Fancy serial numbers on currency are when there is something special about the numbers. Although some third-party grading services recognize several different varieties, the generally recognized as collectible fancy serial numbers are:
- Binary Numbers: A serial number that contains only 0 and 1
- Ladders: Serial numbers that increase or decrease in order
- Low Numbers: Serial numbers from 1 through 9 are considered the most collectible
- Liar’s Poker: A game that uses the serial numbers in the currency as a poker hand. Each player uses their currency notes and bets who has the better hand. The better the hand, the more the serial number is worth
- Radars: Serial numbers that read the same backward and forwards like 12344321
- Repeaters: Serial numbers that repeat like 12121212 or 12341234
- Rotators: Serial numbers that can be read if you turn the note upside down. The only numbers in rotators are 0, 1, 6, 8, and 9
- Solid Numbers: Serial numbers that use all of the same numbers like 11111111
- Combinations: Any combination of the types, such as 101101 being a binary repeater.
There are other ways to collect serial numbers. One way would be to try to find your birthdate on the currency. For example, if you were born on July 4, 1976, you can look for the serial number 19760704 or 07041976. Some years may be challenging to find since the Bureau of Engraving and Printing has created premium collectibles using the year as the first four numbers of a serial number.
If you do not have a number that can be identified as one of these fancy numbers, does it have a “cool factor?” Grab your currency and go to the Fancy Serial Number Checker. Enter the 8-digit serial number and see what it says.
I found a $1 Federal Reserve Note with a serial number reading 82838374. The site told me that it was “so-so.” It was the best ration I found from the money in my pocket!
You can also play with the number. I was curious about what it would say if the first “2” in the serial number were a “3?” As I suspected, the serial number 83838374 is cool!
Depending on how much cash you have in your pocket, it will give you and your children something different to do!