What New Zealand Coins Are Worth Money?

Collecting coins is a hobby that combines history, art, and investment. In New Zealand, the unique blend of indigenous Maori culture and colonial history has produced a fascinating array of coins that appeal to collectors worldwide. Some New Zealand coins, whether due to their rarity, historical significance, or unique design, are worth significantly more than their face value. This guide delves into the world of New Zealand coins to help collectors and investors understand which coins are worth money and why.

The History of New Zealand Coins

Early Coinage (Pre-Decimal Era)

Before the decimalization of the currency in 1967, New Zealand used a system similar to the British pound, shilling, and pence. This period saw the introduction of many coins that are now highly valued by collectors.

Key Coins from the Pre-Decimal Era

1935 Waitangi Crown: Perhaps the most famous and valuable of New Zealand’s pre-decimal coins, this crown was issued to commemorate the Treaty of Waitangi. Its limited mintage makes it highly sought after.

1933 Florin: Known for its rarity, the 1933 florin is another pre-decimal coin that commands a high price among collectors.

Decimalization and Modern Coinage

In 1967, New Zealand switched to a decimal currency system, introducing a new range of coins. Some of these coins have become valuable due to their limited mintage, errors, or special designs.

Notable Decimal Coins

1967 Decimal Issue: The first issue of decimal coins in 1967 included the one cent, two cent, five cent, ten cent, twenty cent, and fifty cent pieces. Some of these coins, particularly those in uncirculated condition, are valuable to collectors.
2006 New Coin Series: In 2006, New Zealand introduced a new series of coins. Certain coins from this series, especially those with errors or in pristine condition, have become valuable.

Factors That Influence Coin Value


Rarity is the most significant factor influencing the value of a coin. Coins with low mintage numbers or those that were only in circulation for a short period tend to be more valuable.


The condition, or grade, of a coin also plays a crucial role in its value. Coins are graded on a scale from poor to mint state (MS), with those in mint condition being worth significantly more.

Historical Significance

Coins that commemorate significant historical events or figures often have higher value due to their historical importance.

Errors and Varieties

Coins with minting errors or unique varieties can be highly sought after by collectors. Examples include double strikes, off-center strikes, and coins with missing elements.

Valuable New Zealand Coins to Look Out For

Pre-Decimal Coins

1. 1935 Waitangi Crown

The 1935 Waitangi Crown is one of the most famous and valuable New Zealand coins. It was issued to commemorate the Treaty of Waitangi, a pivotal event in New Zealand’s history. Due to its limited mintage, this coin is highly sought after by collectors.

Value: Depending on its condition, a 1935 Waitangi Crown can fetch thousands of dollars.

2. 1933 Florin

The 1933 Florin is another valuable pre-decimal coin, known for its rarity. It was part of the series of coins issued during the reign of King George V.

Value: This coin can be worth several hundred dollars, especially in higher grades.

3. 1937 Crown

The 1937 Crown was issued to commemorate the coronation of King George VI. This coin is valued for both its historical significance and limited mintage.

Value: Prices vary, but high-grade examples can be quite valuable.

Decimal Coins

1. 1967 5-Cent Coin

The 1967 5-cent coin is notable because it was part of the first decimal series. Coins from this initial run, especially in uncirculated condition, are valuable to collectors.

Value: Uncirculated coins can be worth several times their face value.

2. 2006 New Zealand $1 Coin

In 2006, New Zealand introduced a new $1 coin featuring the image of a kiwi. Some of these coins, particularly those with minting errors, are highly prized by collectors.

Value: Depending on the error and condition, these coins can be worth significantly more than their face value.

3. 2004 Silver Fern Dollar

This limited-edition coin was issued as part of a commemorative series. Its unique design and limited mintage make it a valuable addition to any collection.

Value: High-grade examples can fetch substantial prices at auction.

Commemorative and Special Issue Coins

1. 1990 Commemorative Dollar

To celebrate New Zealand’s 150th anniversary, a special dollar coin was issued in 1990. This coin is valued for its historical significance and limited mintage.

Value: Depending on condition and demand, it can be worth more than its face value.

2. 2003 Lord of the Rings Coins

Issued to commemorate the filming of the Lord of the Rings trilogy in New Zealand, these coins are popular among both coin collectors and fans of the films.

Value: The value can vary widely based on condition and collector interest.

How to Determine the Value of Your Coins

Coin Grading

Professional coin grading is essential to determine the value of your coins accurately. Grading assesses the coin’s condition, with higher grades indicating better preservation and higher value.

Grading Scale

Poor (P-1) to Mint State (MS-70): Coins are graded on a scale from 1 to 70, with higher numbers indicating better condition.
Common Grades: G (Good), VG (Very Good), F (Fine), VF (Very Fine), EF (Extremely Fine), AU (About Uncirculated), MS (Mint State).

Professional Appraisal

For valuable or rare coins, a professional appraisal from a reputable dealer or grading service is recommended. This can provide an accurate assessment of your coin’s value and authenticity.

Auction Prices

Researching recent auction prices for similar coins can give you an idea of what collectors are willing to pay. Online auction sites and numismatic auction houses are good resources for this information.

Tips for Collecting and Investing in New Zealand Coins

Research and Education

Understanding the history and significance of New Zealand coins is crucial for making informed decisions. Numismatic books, online resources, and coin collecting forums can provide valuable information.

Start Small

If you are new to coin collecting, start with more affordable coins to build your knowledge and experience. Gradually move on to rarer and more valuable coins as you become more confident.

Buy from Reputable Sources

Purchase coins from reputable dealers, auction houses, or certified numismatic organizations. This ensures that you are getting authentic coins and reduces the risk of fraud.

Proper Storage

Store your coins properly to maintain their condition. Use acid-free holders, albums, or coin capsules to protect them from damage and deterioration.

Stay Informed

Keep up to date with the latest trends and developments in the coin collecting world. Attend coin shows, join collector clubs, and subscribe to numismatic publications to stay informed.

See Also: Ordering New Zealand Dollars Online: A Simple Guide


New Zealand coins offer a rich tapestry of history, culture, and artistry. Whether you are a seasoned collector or just starting, understanding which NZD coins are valuable and why can enhance your collecting experience and potentially lead to profitable investments. From the rare and highly coveted pre-decimal coins to the modern decimal issues and commemorative pieces, New Zealand’s coinage presents numerous opportunities for collectors. By researching, educating yourself, and staying connected with the numismatic community, you can build a valuable and rewarding collection of New Zealand coins.

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