The coins Pokémon Go are paid in-game currency used to purchase new items and upgrades in Pokémon Go.
While you can get a lot of consumable items through normal play, some items (like clothing for your Trainer or permanent storage upgrades) can only be purchased with Pokémon Go Coins.
There are two ways to get Pokécoins. One is paying real-world money (the game’s monetization method) and the other is interacting with Gyms.
How to get free Pokécoins in Pokémon Go
To get Pokécoins without paying real money, you must interact with Gyms, which are available from Trainer level 5.
These huge monuments (not to be confused with the smaller PokéStops) can be conquered by one of the three Teams and can be defended by placing Pokémon inside.
Since 2017, this is how the defense of Gyms works:
- You earn 6 Pokécoins per hour defending a Gym (1 Pokécoin every 10 minutes)
- There is a limit of 50 Coins per day, no matter how many Gyms you are defending.
- Your winnings will come to you automatically when your Pokémon is eliminated from the Gym. If your Pokémon stays in the Gym at the end of the day, you won’t win any Pokécoins.
The latter is a change from how Gyms functioned the first year. Back then placing a Pokémon in a Gyms gave you 10 Coins per creature (with a 21-hour wait each time you collected winnings) so, in theory, you can easily get 50 Pokécoins at the same time.
In short, the longer your Pokémon spends in a Gym, the more Pokécoins it will earn. However, you can only earn 50 PokéCoins per day, even if all of your Pokémon are eliminated from the Gyms you are defending at once.
Also, if your Pokémon has been in a Gym for several days, it will only give you 50 Coins in total when they return to you. That means that if other Pokémon return on the same day, you will no longer receive Coins, as you will have reached the daily limit.
For this reason, it is better to organize yourself so that your Pokémon returns from the Gyms in a staggered manner instead of leaving them alone for a long time, this will maximize your profits.
It is also important to note that you can only have one Pokémon in the same Gym at the same time. Although you can have Pokémon in several different gyms, you are limited to 20 Gyms with your creatures inside.