How to trade pokémon in Pokémon Go

a fire type, grass type and water type starter in Pokemon Go
(Image credit: Pokemon company)

Quick steps

  • Be within 100 meters of a friend
  • Use the game's Trade button to begin the trade
  • Complete the trade by choosing the Pokémon you want to send

How to trade in Pokémon Go

Pokémon Go requires you to go outside and find Pokémon situated in real-world locations. However, you likely won't be able to catch every one if you stay in your local area.

That's where trading comes in, which allows you to exchange creatures with a nearby friend in order to get your hands on the creatures you need.

Tools and Requirements

  • Pokémon Go app
  • A nearby friend with the Pokémon Go app
  • Stardust

Pikachu, Squirtle and other Pokemon

(Image credit: Niantic)

Trading in Pokémon Go is important, especially when you consider that some Pokémon can only evolve when you trade. However, there are a few hoops you're going to need to jump through to make it happen. 

Here's a step-by-step guide on how to swap Pokémon with a friend. It won't require a Link-Cable like in the days of Pokémon Red and Blue, however, it will require a friend and some spare Stardust.


  • Become friends with a player. To trade, you'll need another trainer on your friend list. To do this, you'll need to exchange Trainer Codes and confirm the friendship
  • Be within 100 meters of your friend and select trade. This will open up a series of tabs that will walk you through several nuances like, how much trades cost, how much you can trade, and what special trades are
  • Select the Pokémon you'd like to trade. Your friend will have to do the same for their own
  • Confirm the trade. You will both be at a screen that tells you the stat range your friend's Pokémon will come at, as well as how much Stardust the trade will cost to complete
  • Enjoy your Pokémon. Each of your Pokémon will now be traded, and you can start using it like any other (although you can't trade the same Pokémon twice)

Final thoughts

Trading is a key part of Pokémon's identity, and it's no different in Pokémon Go. This is a powerful tool in rounding out your Pokedex but also in getting Pokémon you may need for leveling. 

One thing to keep in mind is that trading is influenced by the Friendship Level you have with the other player, affecting everything from the variance in their stats to how much the trade costs. So, if at all possible, trade with the people you have the highest Friendship Level with. 

Also worth noting is that you can do up to 100 trades in a day, but only one can be a special trade. These are trades involving Legendary, Shiny, or unregistered Pokémon (Pokémon not currently in your Pokedex).

You're now equipped with what you need to know about making trades happen, so get out into the world and find new creatures to send to your friends and family.

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Patrick Dane
Gaming Guides Editor

Patrick Dane is TechRadar Gaming's Guides Editor. With nearly a decade in the games press, he's been a consistent voice in the industry. He's written for a plethora of major publications and travelled the world doing it. He also has a deep passion for games as a service and their potential to tell evolving stories. To wit, he has over 2000 hours in Destiny 2, over 1000 in Overwatch and is now deeply into Valorant.