The new 12-sided £1 coins have been in circulation for nearly two weeks, and some are already selling for a small fortune online.
That’s because more than 200,000 “trial coins”, were issued to businesses and retailers in preparation for the official release on 28 March and collectors are now desperate to get their hands on them.
"The aim was to provide these manufacturers with additional levels of confidence of the compatibility of their equipment ahead of the introduction of the new £1 coin, which is standard practice when a new coin is being introduced," the Royal Mint said.
The Royal Mint made it clear that these coins don’t have legal tender status and have no redeemable value, but that doesn’t seem to be dampening demand.
On eBay, bidding for the coins is starting at between £150 and £250 with some selling for up to £6,000.
Sellers attribute the inflated prices to “errors” such as the “wrong” release date.
Money expert Alex Cassidy, from price comparison website GoCompare's ‘Coining It In’ section, which specialises in collectable coins, says some features could make a coin a special edition model.
"As with the current £2 coins, the 2017 £1 coin is bi-metallic - in this case an outer 'gold' coloured nickel-brass band with an inner 'silver' coloured cupro-nickel disc," he told The Mirror.
“Punters should pay attention to both the floral crown on the reverse side for any rotations, as well as the Queen’s head, which should sit directly above the new bevelled edge,” he added.
It may also be sensible to hold off rushing to the bank to exchange the old round pound coins for new ones before they cease being legal tender on 15 October.
Many collectors are still desperate to complete a collection of all 24 designs of the old coin.
The 2016 banknote beauty pageant
In its “Scarcity Index”, Change Checker, a coin collectors website, has identified two dozen of the rarest £1 coins to have ever been used in circulated the UK and some are worth as much as £50 each.
The rarest coin in the index is the Edinburgh, which is already achieving prices of between £10 and £15 on eBay and could soon be fetching between £25 and £50, according to the website.
The 2011 Cardiff City £1 coin – second on the scarcity index – is selling for £20 on eBay with Change Checker predicting its value will also climb.Reuse content