Trading Pokémon can be done between two friends that are in 100 m from each other in real life. All trades require both trainers to use Stardust. If swapping Pokémon already found within their Pokédexes, only a minimal amount of Stardust is required. This allows Trainers to freely trade most Pokémon that they encounter within reasonable limits, as Stardust is an important resource. Trading is special, and although several mechanics are in place to ensure that Trainers don’t take unfair advantage of it, there are also plenty of rewards to make these mechanics feel unique and personal.
Trainer level 10 is required for trading.
The stats of the Pokémon will change randomly within a range when traded. Before a Trainer completes a trade, they will see the range of CP and HP that the Pokémon could potentially have when the trade is complete.
There's a thoughtful calculation to deciding that range:
- Check Friend's Trainer level to confirm the Pokémon is not powered up past what would ordinarily be obtainable for someone at that level.
- Assign new, fully random stat values with a minimum based on Friendship level, and that base increases the higher that level is.
In other words, as a Trainer's Friendship level increases with a friend, they will have a slightly better chance of receiving a strong Pokémon when trading. A Pokémon that may not be great in battle may excel in battle once traded to a friend, or it could become even worse.
Possible IV Ranges post-trade
- Good Friends: 1-15
- Great Friends: 2-15
- Ultra Friends: 3-15
- Best Friends: 5-15
- Lucky Friends: 12-15
In order to bar Trainers from continually re-rolling a Pokémon's stats through trade, a traded Pokémon cannot be traded again. This feature promotes trading without giving a significant advantage to one Trainer over another. Trainers are currently limited to 100 trades per day.
Special trades are all trades involving Legendary Pokémon, Shiny Pokémon, Purified Pokémon and Pokémon that have not been registered in the Pokédex.
Special Trades can only be done once per day to limit the number of times a single Trainer can make Special Trades with all of their friends. Special Trading does become more accessible over time. As the Friendship level between two Trainers increases, the amount of Stardust needed to complete a Special Trade will significantly decrease.
New friends, making high-value Special Trades of Legendary Pokémon, Shiny Pokémon, and Pokémon not currently in a Trainer's Pokédex, will have to spend a large portion of their Stardust to prevent exploitation and the creation of a black market, which would devalue the hard work of Trainers who have managed to encounter and catch rare or powerful Pokémon.
- Mythical (except Meltan & Melmetal)
- "Slashed" (Pokémon acquired by spoofing or botting)
- Current Buddy Pokémon
- Pokémon currently defending gyms
- Fainted or not at full health
- Unhatched eggs
- Shadow Pokémon
- Pokémon that were already traded
- Main article: Lucky Pokémon
When trading Pokémon, there is a chance that Pokémon can become a Lucky Pokémon. Lucky Pokémon require less Stardust to power up.
When you trade away a Pokémon, you get 1 of their candy as if you transferred it to the professor. Candy increases if the Pokémon were caught far apart. 2 candies are given if caught at least 10 km apart, and 3 candies over 100 km (which is the maximum; you do not get any more no matter how further they were caught apart).
Below there is a table with all possible costs for Pokémon trades.
Regular Pokémon term includes regular Pokémon, region-exclusive Pokémon, baby Pokémon and starter Pokémon.
New Pokémon term means that Pokémon is not registered in trainer's Pokédex prior the trade. It also includes Pokémon's particular form — new letter form of Unown, event costumed Pikachu, Alolan form of Pokémon or Castform weather form. A shiny that has not been registered also count as new; the cost is the same whether you have registered the base form.
|Level||Regular Pokémon||Shiny or Legendary Pokémon|
It is noticeable that costs for not registered regular Pokémon are the same as for already registered Shiny or Legendary Pokémon. Additionally, the friendship discount applies only to special trades and the value of regular trade is 100 regardless the friendship level.
Trading lower evolution (e.g. Machop) first also applies to this benefit.
Following Pokémon can evolve with the trade discount:
Following tips are displayed on the trading page during the waiting for another trainer to connect the trade.
- You can only trade with friends who are nearby.
- Special Trades can only occur once a day.
- You can't trade a Pokémon that has been traded previously.
- The stats of the traded Pokémon will randomly change after trading.
- You can find the trading rules using the Help button located above.
- If your friend’s Trainer level is lower than yours, the traded Pokémon’s potential CP and HP will be adjusted.
- Pokémon not yet registered in your Pokédex require a Special Trade.
- Your Friendship level must reach Good Friend in order to complete a Special Trade.
- You'll receive bonus Candy if the locations where the traded Pokémon were caught are far apart (up to around 100 km).
- The amount of Stardust required for trading drastically reduces as your Friendship level increases.
- Shiny Pokémon, Legendary Pokémon, and Pokémon not currently in your Pokédex require a Special Trade.
- Completing a Special Trade requires a large amount of Stardust.
- Your Friendship level with a friend increases when you trade Pokémon to each other frequently.
- Mythical Pokémon can't be traded.
Trading has existed in the game's data as early as August 2016, where it was interpreted as an "online marketplace".
- Trading a Legendary Pokémon to a Friend can lower one or more of its Individual Values below 10. This also includes Egg (baby Pokémon) and Raid-exclusives.
- Pokémon received through trading count towards progress such as medals for catching that type of Pokémon.
- Searching the phrase "traded" and "tradeevolve" in Pokémon search return the list of all traded Pokémon and Pokémon eligible for trade evolution bonuses respectively.
- From November 12th to 16th, 2020, a limited-time test allowed trading distance to be 12 km at max. The exact distance is only mentioned in Korean blog post.
- From November 18th to 23rd, 2020, another limited-time test allowed trading distance to about 50 km at max.
- It was extended to November 30th, 2020.
- GO Hub. (2016, August 25). Trading, Legendary Pokemon and new Incense Types referenced in the Game Code. Pokémon GO Hub. Retrieved on 2016-08-25.
- Frank, A. (2017, March 1). Pokémon Go trading won't solve rural players' biggest problem. Polygon. Retrieved on 2017-03-05.
- Developer Insights: Inside the Philosophy of Friends and Trading. Pokémon GO Live. Retrieved on 2018-06-22.
- Pokémon GO 0.107.1 APK tear down: trading, new badges, Hydro Cannon, new loading screen, player reputation and more. Pokémon GO Hub. Retrieved on 2018-06-19.
- Trade Evolution and more Pokémon originally discovered in Unova are here! Pokémon GO Live. Retrieved on 2020-01-10.
- PokemonGoApp. We're excited to announce that friends, gifting, and trading are coming soon to Pokémon GO! Twitter. Retrieved on 2018-06-18.
- Make Way for Friends, Trading, and Gifting in Pokémon GO! Pokémon GO Live. Retrieved on 2018-06-18.
- Trading legendaries can get IV below 10/10/10. /r/TheSilphRoad. Retrieved on 2018-06-22.
- Limited-time test: Trade range increased until Monday, November 16, 2020, at 10:00 a.m. PST (GMT −8) Pokémon GO Live. Retrieved on 2020-11-13.
- PokemonGoApp. Surprise! Trade range has been greatly increased until November 23 at 4 p.m. PST!. Twitter. Retrieved on 2020-11-19.
- PokemonGoApp. Trainers, our limited-time test of a greatly increased trade range has been extended until next Monday, November 30th at 1 p.m. PST!. Twitter. Retrieved on 2020-11-24.