Now that we've explained and how Pokémon Go works, as well as outlined some safety precautions to take while playing Pokémon Go, it's time to talk about how much Pokémon Go costs to play. Don't worry; you can download, install, and play the game without ever spending a dime on it, but we'll show you some ways to get ahead in the game… if you're willing to pay.
Is Pokémon Go free?
Most aspects of Pokémon Go are free of charge. It costs no money to download and install the game, nor does it cost money to sign up for an account. The only thing that costs money in Pokémon Go is buying extra items through the use of PokéCoins. This is an in-game currency that can be bought or earned.
How does Pokémon Go make money?
The majority of money made from Pokémon Go is from the sale of PokeCoins. Nintendo and Niantic, the creators of Pokémon Go, are also considering the sale of peripheral devices, as well as a form of affiliate advertising, with businesses paying to have PokéStops and Pokémon Gyms located at their premises.
How much does Pokémon Go cost?
Pokémon Go doesn't cost any money to download or play, but it will cost you money to get PokéCoins (in most cases). These can be exchanged at the in-game shop for various items. For example, if you spend $10, you get 1200 PokéCoins, which you could exchange for 8 Lucky Eggs, 4 Egg Incubators, and 4 Lure Modules.
The real-money prices of PokéCoins, as well as the PokéCoin costs of various items, are listed below.
Prices of PokéCoins
- 100 PokéCoins — $1
- 550 PokéCoins — $5
- 1200 PokéCoins — $10
- 2500 PokéCoins — $20
- 5200 PokéCoins — $40
- 14,500 PokéCoins — $100
(NOTE: All of these prices are in U.S. dollars. They may change according to the value of your local currency.)
Prices of in-game items
- 20 Poké Balls — 100 PokéCoins
- 100 Poké Balls — 460 PokéCoins
- 200 Poké Balls — 800 PokéCoins
- 1 Incense — 80 PokéCoins
- 8 Incenses — 500 PokéCoins
- 25 Incenses — 1250 PokéCoins
- 1 Lucky Egg – 80 PokéCoins
- 8 Lucky Eggs – 500 PokéCoins
- 25 Lucky Eggs – 1250 PokéCoins
- 1 Lure Module – 100 PokéCoins
- 8 Lure Modules – 680 PokéCoins
- Egg Incubator (3-use) – 150 PokéCoins
- Bag Upgrade (50 more items) – 200 PokéCoins
- Pokémon Storage Upgrade (50 more Pokémon) – 200 PokéCoins
How to access the shop in Pokémon Go
From the game's main map screen, tap the main menu icon (it looks like a Poké Ball) in the bottom-middle portion of the screen.
From the main menu screen, tap Shop.
On the shop screen, tap the item that you would like to buy, and then tap Exchange to exchange your available PokéCoins (shown at the top of the screen) for that item. If you attempt to buy PokéCoins, you will need to set up a method of payment with your Google or Apple account in order to pay for them (if you haven't already)… and maybe get your parents' permission first!
There is a way to earn PokéCoins, as well. Note the shield icon in the top-right corner. If you tap this while you have at least one Pokémon stationed at a friendly Gym, you will earn 10 PokéCoins and 500 Stardust (see the "Battling at Gyms" and "Strengthening your Pokémon" sections of our How to Play Pokémon Go tutorial for more on Gyms and Stardust) for every Pokémon that you have stationed at a friendly Gym. Note that you can only collect this bonus once every 21 hours, so try to balance between how many Pokémon you have stationed at Gyms versus how long you expect them to last there.
One more thing: tap the "X" at the bottom-middle of the screen to exit the shop.
Well, that's a short explanation of the potential costs associated with playing Pokémon Go, and how to use the shop in the game. Next, we'll review the game's pros and cons.