So how rare is a specimen? Well, if you collect Ukrainian banknotes not very. I've been looking at Ukrainian specimen notes for a while now, over a year, and one of the initial observations was that "wow, there are a lot available". Meaning that they are not hard to find and they are not hard to find a reasonable prices. For the modern issues anyway, 1991 to date. A quick search of ebay, lazily typing in UKRAINE SPECIMEN, nets 281 hits, of which I would say 50-75 are actual banknote specimens, seems like a lot to me. If I type in Venezuela specimen, boom, tons of hits, I can buy a complete run of 2018 Bolivares Soberanos specimens for $150. A quick search of the PMG population report for Ukraine shows 54 specimens have been graded (including samples and proofs) out of 1,815 notes, hmm ok seems high. So how does this compare to other countries, Zimbabwe has 6 graded specimens out of 13,988 notes, Venezuela 823 of 3,917 (wow), Belarus 22 of 1,497, Lithuania 333 of 3,246, Latvia 26 of 812, Estonia 296 of 1,889 (what) and Disney Dollars 67 of 7,740 . Ok, so nothing really correlative there, just some fun statistics. Still it seems that Ukrainian specimens are easy to come by, so much so that PMG felt it prudent to create specimen sets for the registry. There is really no way to statistically determine the rarity of a specimen unless I have the number of specimen's printed, the # destroyed and total notes issued, at least as I type this I think that would be the most accurate statistic. In most cases, yes, specimens are more desirable than regular issues but don't get crazy when you see one because, yeah it's pretty much just a specimen.
Ok, now that I'm done dumping on specimens, here's a few of mine.
I will say this about collecting world notes and even more so, world notes that don't have a big collector base. You get the opportunity to add harder to find notes and have more comprehensive collections. You don't have nearly the struggle, competition or cost to acquire some really great notes (graded and raw). I'm not sure if there is a specimen U.S. set of any type but I bet it would be very difficult and expensive for someone to try for a set like that. I'll stay here in the cavernous shadows of the world registry for now, I'm just having too much fun to leave at the moment.