From glitzy 1920s Monaco to wholesome 1950s Yorkshire, demand for artworks capturing a bygone era of travel is growing. Thankfully, it’s easier and cheaper than ever to pick them, with hundreds of sites selling original and replica vintage travel posters online.
While the Ancient Egyptians may have had their own version thousands of years ago, posters didn’t really take off until the late 19th century. In the early 20th century, railway companies would hang posters in stations to promote new destinations and when the commercial aviation industry took off, airlines followed suit. As travel democratized, so did its artwork, and thus began the Golden Age of Travel. As well as offering a glimpse into yesteryear, vintage travel posters are a stylish – and often affordable – way to bring some colour and personality into your home. We’ve selected five of the best places to buy vintage travel posters online, based on range, price and reviews.
Vintagraph offers an extensive range of custom fine-art posters and prints focussed on WWI, WWII and WPA posters, but it’s their vintage travel poster collection that really sets them apart. The collection features vintage posters from Europe, South America, the American West and the WPA, all printed on museum-quality paper. Posters are restored from scans of the original artwork, sourced from posters they own or from public sources such as the Library of Congress. Artwork undergoes digital restoration before going public too, ensuring that every poster pops. Highlights include the Air France collection from the 1940s and a wide selection of US National Parks posters.
Find out more at Vintagraph.com. Prices from $15.
My Retro Poster
My Retroposter offers a staggering range of vintage posters, with over 1,000 different designs available in a variety of sizes. The store offers ready-made frames and poster panels for added convenience too. Unlike many online stores, My Retro Poster creates the artwork themselves, so they’re technically vintage-inspired, rather than replicas. That means you can pick up an original piece of artwork for a pretty price. You can commission custom-made vintage travel posters too, with options to add your family to the advert or create artwork for the most specific and special destinations.
Find out more at MyRetroPoster.com. Prices start at €25 per poster.
International Poster Gallery
If you’re looking for original vintage travel posters online, International Poster Gallery boasts one of the internet’s most exhaustive collections. Currently, there are over 550 full-size posters, baggage labels and mini-posters dating back as far as 1880. For the undiscerning eye, it’s important to source your original posters from sources you can trust. This Boston-based business hosts highly acclaimed exhibitions and source works for museums and galleries across the world, so you know you can trust them too. You’ll find iconic works for blockbuster cities like New York, Paris and London, as well as more obscure posters for the Soviet Union.
Find out more at InternationalPosterGallery.com. Prices from $20.
Vintage Posteria sells a range of retro posters, but their destination posters are the biggest hits. With over 250 different designs ranging from old-school maps of New York to 1950s Cornish railway adverts, it’s practically impossible to leave the site empty-handed. Best-sellers include a Las Vegas Fly TWA David Klein poster, a Montreal Olympics 1976 poster and a poster for French Air. Artwork is printed on high-quality canvas, rather than paper, and colour-matched to the original works. Posters come in the standard 8x10in, 12x14in, 20x24in and 24x36in, but you can also order a selection in custom sizes if you’re looking to fill a specific space. Prints can be purchased with a class or clip frame too.
Find out more at VintagePosteria.com. Prices from $25.
Pimlico Prints is based in London but it offers shipping worldwide at reasonable rates. The collection encompasses illustrations, contemporary photography, Victorian art reproductions and a spectacular selection of vintage travel posters. You’ll find everything from classic 1920s adverts for the Cote d’Azur to adverts promoting swinging sixties England, as well as specific landmarks like La Sagrada Familia. You can also purchase frames from the site at the same time, and they even have a handy inspiration page with tips on creating the perfect gallery wall.
Find out more at PimlicoPrints.co.uk. Prices from £4.48 ($6.20)