There are two ways to get PokéCoins. One is through paying real-world money (the means of which the game is monitised) and the other is by interacting with Gyms.
With the substantial summer 2017 Gym rework, the way you earn and received Coins has changed – for the better and worse.
How to get PokéCoins and collect them in Pokémon Go
To get PokéCoins without paying real-world money, you must interact with Gyms, which are available from Trainer level 5.
These are towering, spinning monuments (not to be confused with regular PokéStops) that can be taken over by one of the game’s three Teams and must defend it by placing Pokémon inside.
This is how Coins work following the 2017 Gym rework:
- For every 10 minutes you have a Pokémon in the Gym, you gain 1 PokéCoin.
- Your earnings will be delivered to you automatically when your Pokémon has been removed from the Gym.
- There is a cap of 50 Coins per day you can receive across all Pokémon and Gyms.
The cap was initially mentioned on the official support page and later removed, but appears to still be in place, according to the Silph Road sub-Reddit.
This is different to how Gyms worked in the game’s first year, where placing a Pokémon in a Gym would get you a flat rate of 10 Coins per creature (with a 21 hour cooldown period whenever you cash out) so in theory, you can now easily earn 50 PokéCoins in the same period.
However, if your Pokémon has been in a Gym for several days (accruing more than 50 coins), they will only provide 50 coins in total when they come back to you. It also means that, if other Pokémon come back to you on that same day, you won’t receive any more Coins – as you’ve already hit the cap for that day.
As such, it is probably better to have your Pokémon return from Gyms on a regular, staggered basis, rather than over long periods and all at once to maximise your gains.
It’s also worth noting you can only have one of your Pokémon in one Gym at a time, you can still have Pokémon in multiple Gyms. There is now a cap of 20 Gyms you can place creatures inside.
So it’s a similar system but with a few key differences. If you previously kept creatures in Gyms for days on end then you could see fewer Coins rewarded, but it otherwise gives you more opportunities to earn Coins more often.
If you want to read general advice on how to keep Pokémon in Gyms for longer, then read our complete Gym rework guide page, as well as our tier list of best Pokémon you should be looking to train.