A guide to Friends, Trading and Gifts in Pokemon GO

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Trainers, this is not a drill – Niantic has just announced that three new features are coming to Pokemon GO:

Friends and Friendship Levels

You will soon be able to connect with your real world friends via Pokemon GO and see their in-game activities on the Friends List. When you raid or gym with people from your friends list, you raise your Friendship Level. You earn the following bonuses with higher Friendship Level:

  • You deal more damage when raiding with friends
  • You get more balls and items from raids when raiding with friends
  • Your trades are discounted when trading with a good friend
  • You exchange your Trainer Code to make friends
  • Trainer Codes are unique ID numbers given to each player, and once you enter a friend’s code, they will be sent a Friend Request.
  • You can increase your Friendship level once per day per friend.

There are four levels of Friendship:

Level Time Trading effects Raiding and gym effects
Best Friend 90d
  • Trade all Pokemon except Mythicals
  • 3x discount on Trading
  • 3x Attack Bonus
  • +4 extra Premier Balls with that friend
Ultra Friend 30d
  • Trade all Pokemon except Mythicals
  • 2x discount on Trading
  • 2x Attack Bonus
  • +2 extra Premier Balls with that friend
Great Friend 7d
  • Trade all Pokemon except Mythicals
  • 1x discount on Trading
  • 1x Attack Bonus
  • +1 extra Premier Ball with that friend
Good Friend 1d
  • Trade all Pokemon except Mythicals

It is strongly encouraged to raise Friendship levels with your local players quickly, as these bonuses work on top of the existing Weather and Team based damage / ball bonuses. However, only the highest friend bonus is applied – they do not stack up.


Pokemon GO GuftsWhen you spin a PokeStop / Gym, you will be able to receive a special Gift. You can’t open the gift yourself, but a Friend from your Friends List will be able to open it up. Gifts are special, as they can contain rare items, such as an Egg that hatches into an Alolan form of a Pokemon discovered in Kanto.


  • You can’t open the Gift yourself, you need a friend to open it
  • Each gift contains a postcard, showcasing where the Gift was picked up
  • Gifts can also contain a special surprise: a special 7 km Egg that, when hatched, reveals an Alola form of a Pokémon originally discovered in the Kanto region!


Pokemon GO TradingThe level requirement for Pokemon GO trading is Level 10 and higher, and it costs Stardust to trade Pokemon. Additionally, trading Pokemon that were caught far away will award extra Candy. By raising your Friendship level, the Stardust cost decreases.


  • You need to be within 100 meters of a friend to trade
  • IVs are re-rolled when you transfer Pokemon, do not trade your 100% IV Pokemon
  • Regular trades cost 100 Stardust a piece
  • Candy Bonuses depends on the distance between locations where Pokemon were caught
  • You get maximum Candy Bonuses when you trade Pokemon that were caught at 100 KM distance apart (and higher)

A note on traded Pokemon IV rerolls and level

The following rules apply when trading Pokemon:

  • the trading screen shows the range of CP and HP the Pokemon can have after trading.
  • the range adjusts based on your Friendship level and the level of players in the trading process
  • IVs can be rerolled randomly, anywhere from 0% to 100%, ensuring a fair trading system for everyone
  • moves while trading remain a mystery at this moment

Special trading

Special trading rules apply when trading Legendary, Shiny or not yet caught Pokemon (regionals, for example):

  • Special Trading costs Stardust and are unlocked only with Great or Best Friend trainers
  • Special Trades are only available for
    • Legendary
    • Shiny
    • Not yet caught Pokemon
  • You can only make one Special Trade a day and they cost around 40k Stardust per trade (best friend) all the way up to 1M Stardust on lowest friendship level.

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Zeroghan started the Hub in July 2016 and hasn't had much sleep since. A lover of all things Pokémon, web development, and writing.

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