The 20 pence coin is a form of British sterling coinage worth ⅕ of a pound. This denomination has been around since 1982, and has a current standard value as well as collectible value for certain varieties.
In most instances, the value of a 20 pence coin in dollars directly depends on the current exchange rate between the Great British Pound (GBP) and United States Dollar (USD). A 20 pence coin from a pound-dependent country is usually worth more because of its novel design.
Keep reading to learn how to calculate the value of a 20 pence coin in dollars as well as which 20p coins to keep an eye out for.
Calculating the Value of 20 Pence in U.S. Dollars
Unless you’re dealing with a particularly valuable 20 pence coin, it’s only worth the current exchange rate. This changes from day to day depending on a number of conditions, but you can usually find the current rate with a simple web search.
Usually the exchange rate you see is in terms of pound sterling to the U.S. dollar. A pence is 1/100th of a pound, so you will actually multiply the exchange rate by “0.20”.
The general formula for calculating coin value based off exchange rate is:
- Starting Amount x Exchange Rate = Ending Amount in Foreign Currency
For this situation:
- Amount (GBP) x Exchange Rate (£/$) = Amount (USD)
As of June 12, 2023, £1 is equal to $1.25. This exchanges at a rate of 1.25, meaning you would multiply your GBP by 1.25 to get its value in USD. Because 20p is 20/100 of a pound, you actually calculate this like so:
- £0.20 x 1.25 = $0.25
Remember that the exchange value of currency between two countries is always subject to change, and this number can go up and down as time goes on. The value that you calculate on any given day is not guaranteed to stick overnight.
This also doesn’t take into consideration any 20p coins that are worth more than their face value. Proof coins, which are minted using a particular process and sold for collection, are always worth more than face value. Collectors will also pay a premium for error coins and any other rare varieties of the 20p you may come across.
Valuable Errors on 20 Pence Coins
While a circulated 20p coin is not particularly valuable, one with a verified Mint error will often bring in more. These coins should be properly certified to make sure they aren’t fakes or the product of post-mint damage, but they’re often worth a small premium.
Rare and most valuable 20p coins that could be worth up to £750
The most well known examples include:
- Blank 20 pence coins
- Dateless 20 pence coins
- Bronze 20 pence coins
These are often accepted as legal tender, but you’re better off stashing them away.
Blank 20 Pence Coin
A blank 20 pence coin once sold for £430 ($537.97) on eBay. This coin was likely struck on both its obverse and reverse like normal, but stuck to the reverse die. When the next coin was struck, it removed all details on the tail side.
For this to happen, there would need to be another coin out there with details missing on the opposite side (although none have yet appeared). Finding the matching coin would likely result in an energetic auction and a higher final bid.
Dateless 20 Pence Coin
The date on the 20 pence coin was moved from the back to the front in 2008, but a small Mint error caused several of these coins to enter circulation without a date. An estimated 50,000 to 200,000 coins were struck with the old obverse and new reverse, eliminating the date completely.
These were the first undated British coins in over 300 years, but they’re still acceptable legal tender. You’re unlikely to see them in circulation due to their rarity, and they now sell for about £60 (about $75).
Bronze 20 Pence Coin
A bronze 20 pence coin refers to a 1p coin blank that somehow ended up in the 20p press. These coins have the composition of the penny but the design of the 20p planchet.
These show up very rarely, and it’s estimated they’re worth about £750 ($938.45) right now.
If you’re considering buying, selling, or trading coins, we suggest using a tool like Coin Value Checker to determine its worth.
United Kingdom 20 Pence Coin Designs
To date, the 20p coin has had 4 obverse portraits of Queen Elizabeth II:
- Machin portrait (1982 to 1984): Queen Elizabeth II wears the Girls of Great Britain and Ireland tiara
- Maklouf portrait (1985 to 1997): Queen Elizabeth II wears the George IV State diadem
- Rank-Broadley portrait (1998 to 2015): Queen Elizabeth II wears the Girls of Great Britain and Ireland tiara; initials IRB below her portrait
- Jody Clark portrait (2015 to 2021): the final portrait of Queen Elizabeth II again wearing the Diamond diadem; created without a sitting and using computer-aided design software
The original reverse by William Garden exists on coins minted prior to 2008 and features a crowned Tudor rose with “20” below the rose and the inscription TWENTY PENCE along the top curve.
The current reverse design is part of a matching set designed by Matthew Dent. When combined, the denomination coins form a Royal Shield. The 20p shows where the second and fourth quarters of the shield would meet, including part of the lion rampant of Scotland and the lion passant of England.
Different 20 Pence Coin Varieties
There are several varieties of the 20 pence coin in existence today created by crown-dependent regions. While these coins are not considered legal tender in the United Kingdom, they pop up from time to time and are valuable to some collectors.
- Gibraltar pounds
- Manx pounds
- Jersey pounds
- Guernsey pounds
These coins feature the same portraits of the U.K. coins but have different reverse designs. There are also several proof examples in differing compositions, making it difficult to construct a definitive list of values.
Gibraltar 20 Pence Coin
Sterling coins were made the sole legal tender of Gibraltar in 1898, and the territory has issued its own coins since 1988. These coins have the same composition, size, and shape as the equivalent British coin, but they’re not legal tender in the United Kingdom.
The obverse of the Gibraltar 20 pence coin features a portrait of Queen Elizabeth II, while the reverse design changes depending on the year.
- Our Lady of Europe
- Discovery of Neanderthal Skull in Gibraltar (Tercentenary coin)
- The Keys of Gibraltar
- Gibraltar Coat of Arms with “FIFTIETH ANNIVERSARY OF THE REFERENDUM” inscription
The coin value differs depending on who you’re selling to or buying from, but they’re not particularly scarce or invaluable.
Manx 20 Pence Coin
The Manx pounds from the Isle of Man were minted by the Pobjoy Mint from 1971 to 2016 and the Tower Mint from 2017 onward. They appear similar to the pound sterling, but are not legal tender in the United Kingdom.
There are several examples of reverse design on the Manx 20 pence coin. These include:
- Medieval norse armory
- Three atlantic herrings
- A combine harvester (and another with a thick border)
- A rally design featuring a Subaru Impreza and a Ford Escort Cosworth
- Rushen Abbey
- Rushen Castle
- A longboat from the viking era
The Manx International Rally design is particularly valuable and worth about £13.50 ($16.89), but any of these coins seem to command a premium on the pound sterling due to their novel designs.
Jersey 20 Pence Coin
The Jersey 20 pence coin was first produced in 1982. The coins feature the portrait of Queen Elizabeth II on the obverse and the La Corbière Lighthouse on the reverse.
These coins match the composition, size, and shape of the British coins.
Guernsey 20 Pence Coin
Guernsey decimalised along with the rest of the British Isles in 1971 and immediately offered a full range of coins as they were introduced, including the 20 pence in 1982. These first decimal coins featured Raphael Maklouf’s portrait of Queen Elizabeth II, but they switched to the Ian Rank-Broadley portrait in 1998.
There are two Guernsey 20 pence reverses. From 1982 to 1984 the coins featured a Guernsey milk can with the date below. The more popular and recent design is the cog and map of Guernsey on all 20p from 1985 onward.
The 20p coins from Guernsey are worth about £5 ($6.26).
Checking the Value of Your 20 Pence Coin
While the 20 pence coin hasn’t been around nearly as long as other coins, there are plenty of variables that may affect the value of yours.
This takes all details of the coin into consideration, including rarity, condition, and market demand, to provide the most accurate estimate. Unlike other tools and estimates, Coin Value Checker updates these prices daily to make sure you have the most relevant information.