Individually, tissue and soluble markers involved in the programmed cell death protein 1/programmed death-ligand (PD-1/PD-L) axis have been described as biomarkers with clinical value in classical Hodgkin lymphoma (cHL). In the context of the success of immune checkpoint blockade therapy in cHL, it is interesting to discover whether plasma levels of proteins in the PD-1/PD-L axis are a reflection of expression by the corresponding tissue. Paired tissue and plasma samples of cHL patients were collected and analysed for PD-1, PD-L1 and PD-L2 levels. In addition, vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and CD83, molecules regarded to influence the expression of PD-1, PD-L1 and/or PD-L2, were included. PD-L1 was upregulated in the plasma of cHL patients compared to healthy controls and correlated well with several clinical parameters. Strong PD-L1 expression in the tumour microenvironment contributed to high soluble (s)PD-L1 levels, although there was no direct correlation between plasma PD-L1 levels and total expression of PD-L1 in corresponding cHL tissue. Interestingly, we observed a positive correlation between VEGF and PD-1 levels in both tissue and plasma. In conclusion, although PD-L1 is a promising soluble biomarker in cHL, its levels do not reflect the total tissue expression. Future studies focusing on PD-L1 as a predictor for immune checkpoint treatment response, should include both biopsy and plasma samples.