Almost everything you do in Pokémon Go gains you XP which increases your Trainer Level, unlock new items and lets you find stronger Pokémon in the wild. For a full list of what you unlock on each level check the Trainer Level unlocks.
This is a list of how much XP you will gain from certain actions in Pokémon Go.
- Capture any Pokémon 100 XP
- Catch a new Pokémon 500 XP
- Throw accuracy bonus:
- Curveball 10XP
- Nice Throw 10 XP
- Great Throw 50 XP
- Excellent Throw 100 XP
PokeStops and Gyms:
- Interacting with a PokéStop 50XP
- Winning a Gym battle vs one Pokémon 150XP (plus 100XP for additional defeated Pokémon)
- Winning a Gym training session in your gym Varies (relates to CP difference)
Evolving and hatching Pokémon:
- Evolving a Pokémon 500XP (Plus a bonus for new Pokémon of 500XP)
- Hatching a Pokémon 200XP (Plus a bonus for new Pokémon of 500XP)
All of these actions earn you double XP while using a Lucky Egg
Evolution is the key
Catching Pokémon and evolving them will be your primary source of XP in Pokémon Go. Every evolution needs two things; a Pokémon to evolve and enough Candy to do it. Every time you catch a Pokémon you gain 3 candies for that Pokémon (including it’s evolutions). You also gain 1 extra Candy by transferring the Pokémon to Professor Willow.
Some Pokémon like Magikarp need 400 Magikarp Candy to evolve into Gyarados, while others like Paras need only 50 Paras Candy to evolve into Parasect. Despite the difference of 450 candies each is worth the same 500XP.
This is why Pidgey, Caterpie and Weedle are your new best friends. Each of the Pokémon need only 12 Candy to evolve. Let’s focus on Pidgey; catching just 4 Pidgeys will net you 12 Pidgey candies.
Basically build up an inventory of Pidgeys, Weedles and Caterpies, Transfer the excess for more Candy and keep enough for a massive evolution sessions when using a Lucky Egg (see below). Every Pokémon is worth capturing for XP, Stardust and Candy, but those three will gain you levels faster than any other.
By far the quickest way to level up is by using a Lucky Egg. Using one of these items boosts your XP gain by 100% for 30 minutes, so for example one evolution will gain you 1000XP instead of the usual 500XP.
A basic leveling up strategy is to use a Lucky Eggs when evolving a group of Weedles, Caterpies and Pidgeys who, as mentioned above, have the lowest Candy requirements for evolution of any Pokémon. Lucky Egg XP boosts counts for all XP related actions including egg hatching, gym battles and visiting PokéStops, so plan ahead before using one.
You get one Lucky Egg for free at level 9, 10, 15 and 25, plus two Lucky Eggs at level 20, and three Lucky Eggs at level 30. That’s 9 free Lucky Eggs in total. Additional Eggs can be bought for 80 Pokécoins in the Shop (see Getting and spending Pokécoins).