How to get free Pokécoins in 'Pokémon GO'

‘Pokémon GO’ wants you to spend your hard-earned cash on Pokécoins, but there’s a pretty simple way to earn them for free.

You'll have to be above level 5 to take advantage of this, because it requires that you have one of your Pokémon defending a gym that your team controls.

Niantic/The Pokémon Company

To do this, you'll have to leave one of your Pokémon behind to defend a friendly gym -- one that's controlled by the team you belong to. There are two ways to do this.


Method one: Raise the prestige level at a friendly gym.


Once you win enough battles at a friendly gym, you'll raise its Prestige level. The gym's level directly corresponds to how many Pokémon are guarding it. In this case, the gym is level 3, so it has 3 Pokémon guarding it.

Once you level up your gym, there will be a free space where you can place a Pokémon to defend your gym against rival teams.

Method two: defeat an enemy gym.

The Pokemon Company

By totally defeating an enemy gym, you will be able to leave a Pokémon behind to defend the gym that's now controlled by your team.

If you choose this method, go for a gym that has a relatively low level so you only have to defeat a few Pokémon and be sure to check out our full guide to battles in 'Pokémon GO.'

For every day your Pokémon guards a gym, you'll earn some free Pokécoins! No need to spend real money on them. Your Pokémon will stay there and continue to earn coins until your gym has been defeated by another team.


All you have to do is click the shield icon in the upper right corner of the 'Shop' window. If there's a number other than zero within the shield icon, tap it to claim your free Pokécoins. You can do this once per day. Yay!

Niantic/The Pokemon Company

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