Increasing your Trainer level by gaining XP is one of the most important things you can do in Pokémon Go. Later Trainer levels increase your chances of meeting higher CP Pokémon out in the wild - increasing their effectiveness in Gym battles - and will also increase your chances of discovering rare Pokemon.
Not only that, but each new Trainer level will also give you a series of items, which become more lucrative the higher your level, unlocking more powerful Pokéballs and more.
If you want to gain XP quickly, then there's a number of smart ways in doing so - including a way to get a staggering 60,000 XP in 30 minutes.
Get XP fast in Pokémon Go by Pidgey, Weedle and Caterpie farming
The fastest and most effective means of gaining XP is by evolving Pokémon one after another while a Lucky Egg multiplier is active.
While you can evolve any Pokémon within that window to gain 500 XP per evolution - or 1000 XP with the Lucky Egg multiplier - you specifically want to target Pidgeys, Weedles and Caterpies. This is because they're very common, and the Candy required to evolve them is less than other Pokémon - a scant 12 Candy compared to the usual 25 or 50 of other creatures.
As a comparison, you need 25 Candies to evolve other common creatures such as Rattata, Eevee or Oddish - we've assembled some tips on how to get Candy effectively from across the game, including Pokémon Go's Buddy system, if you need them. If you need help farming specific Pokémon or certain types, then use our how to find Pokémon nearby and how to locate Pokémon by Type pages.
To get the most out of this method, capture as many Pidgeys, Weedles and Caterpies as you can, with each capture giving you Candy and a potential creature to evolve. Remember you can get bonus Candy by transferring them back to the Professor, but make sure you have enough to actually evolve. Thankfully, there's a handy online calculator named PidgeyCalc that will work out exactly how many you need to transfer to maximise your time, and how long it will take.
If you prepare this method correctly, and have the exact right amount of Pokémon and Candy when you use the Lucky Egg, it's possible to evolve up to 60 Pokémon within 30 minutes - earning you a staggering 60,000 XP - or even more if you manage to combine it with a season event that increases your XP finds, such as the Thanksgiving update.
Pokémon Go XP sources list
If you don't have enough Pokémon for a mass evolving spree, and you still want to gain some easy (though admittedly not as lucrative) XP, then there are many other activities that can get you what you need.
As a reminder of what activities gain you how much XP, here's a run down to help you plan your activities, especially if you have a Lucky Egg at hand, which will double all XP gains for the next 30 minutes.
|Activity||Normal XP||2x XP with Lucky Egg|
|Capture any Pokémon||100 XP||200 XP|
|Catch a new Pokémon||500 XP (+ 100 XP)||1000 XP (+ 200 XP)|
|Catch a Pokémon with a Curveball||10 XP||20 XP|
|Catch a Pokémon with a Nice throw||10 XP||20 XP|
|Catch a Pokémon with a Great throw||50 XP||100 XP|
|Catch a Pokémon with an Excellent Throw||100 XP||200 XP|
|Evolving a Pokémon||500 XP||1000 XP|
|Evolving a new Pokémon||500 XP (+ 500 XP)||1000 XP (+ 1000 XP)|
|Hatching a 2km Egg||200 XP||400 XP|
|Hatching a 5km Egg||500 XP||1000 XP|
|Hatching a 10km Egg||1000 XP||2000 XP|
|Hatching a new Pokémon||500 XP (+ 200 / 500 / 1000 XP)||1000 XP (+ 400 / 1000 / 2000 XP)|
|Interact with PokéStop||50 XP||100 XP|
|Daily Bonus for PokeStop||500 XP||1000 XP|
|Daily Bonus for PokeStop on day seven||2000 XP||4000 XP|
|Daily Bonus for catching Pokémon||500 XP||1000 XP|
|Daily Bonus for catching Pokémon on day seven||2000 XP||4000 XP|
|Winning a Gym battle vs one Pokémon||150 XP||300 XP|
|Winning a Gym battle vs two Pokemon||250 XP||500 XP|
|Winning a Gym battle vs three Pokémon||350 XP||700 XP|
|Winning a Gym battle vs four Pokémon||450 XP||900 XP|
|Winning a Gym battle vs five Pokémon||550 XP||1100 XP|
Other ways to get XP fast in Pokémon Go
As mentioned, a Lucky Egg is the best thing to use when going on an XP run. A Lucky Egg is a guaranteed drop as a Trainer level reward at 9, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30, 35 and 40. They can also be purchased with PokéCoins in the game's shop.
If you don't have enough Pidgeys or other common creatures to go on a mass evolution spree, then your best bet is exploring an area filled with PokéStops and Pokémon.
In the right areas of cities such as London, Brighton or Birmingham, you'll find streets filled with them, making it a great opportunity to use a Lucky Egg as you explore, since many come one after another. Otherwise, find an area where you can loop back round and revisit older ones after the five minute expiry to use them again.
You can combine this with catching Pokémon along the way (you can get a little extra from special throws, remember that any new catches are worth more, if you're lucky to find them on your route) then the XP soon adds up, especially if you use an Incense to attract Pokémon to you, or if you find yourself returning to the same PokéStops, then dropping a Lure there could be particularly useful.
Want more help with Pokémon Go? Read our Pokémon Go tips, tricks, cheats and guides for insights on how to improve your skills, how to choose your Eevee evolution, and how CP works. Plus details of Pokémon Go's secrets and Easter Eggs, how to get the new baby Pokémon, a guide to Egg groups, charts, and Egg hatching, details on the Daily Bonuses, finding Ditto, and even which team to join from Team Valor, Mystic, and Instinct.
What's good about this method is with the right route, you won't find a shortage of PokéStops to interact with, giving you a steady stream of XP for the duration of your journey. While it's not as fast as the evolution method, it's a lot easier and in the right area can be performed at anytime. At lower levels, it's easily enough to take you to the next Trainer level.
You can also try attempting to time an egg hatching during that 30 minutes to give you bonus XP, evolving creatures you've yet to discover for an additional 500 XP bonus, and taking on a rival Pokémon Gym is also good for XP gains.
Filling 30 minutes with Gym battles would be difficult, especially if you have a team good enough to topple it quickly, but might be good to integrate into the above route. You can think of this method as a bonus way to farm common creatures that you can one day use for the evolving XP trick above, so catch everything you see!
Finally, an update to the game introduced a Pokémon Go Daily Bonus, whereby you receive an additional 500 XP for your first catch of the day, and much more if you catch creatures seven days in a row.