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Pokémon GO – How to Level Up Fast and Reach Level 40

Earn lots of XP by following this guide

by Kyle Hanson


Pokémon GO players around the world have spent the last four and a half years trying desperately to level up to the current level cap of 40. Many have reached that point over the years, but many more haven’t. With the level cap set to rise to 50 later on this year, trainers are definitely wanting to focus on raising their XP to reach that lofty goal of reaching level 40. And you’ll want to do it fast since there’s rewards for hitting it by the end of the year. To help, here’s how to level up fast and reach level 40 in Pokémon GO.

How to Level Up Fast

To start, now is the perfect time to level up fast in the game as a new event will begin on November 18th at 1pm PT that offers extra (up to double) XP for almost everything you do. XP is gained in many ways as you play Pokémon GO, but some are far better than others. Catching and evolving Pokémon, hatching eggs, and earning a new Pokédex entry are all boosted starting later today and until the end of the year, so simply playing the game more during this time will be a huge help.

Catching Pokémon during these last couple of months will be a great way to casually earn a lot of XP fast, especially since they’re likely to offer double the usual amount. If you have a Pokémon GO Plus device or the Poké Ball Plus then try to keep it active and connected as much as you can (and use a Lucky Egg if you have extra). They’ll also spin Poké Stops for you, which earns a little bit of XP. When you’re trying to reach such a high level as 40, every little bit helps. If you can visit high traffic areas safely, especially ones you’ve never been to so that you get the new Poké Stop bonus, you can rack up a lot of experience fast.

Besides the bonuses, there are lots of ways to earn tons of XP fast. The most well known is the mass evolve method. This is where you save up cheap evolutions for easy to catch Pokémon, such as Pidgey, Rattata, Caterpie, and Weedle, or their later gen equivalents. Just store up enough that it seems like it will take you about 30 minutes to get through them, use a Lucky Egg, and try to rush as many as you can. Entering “evolve” into the search area of your Pokémon screen will show you any that are able to be evolved, shortening the time it takes to sort through them all.

One thing you’ll definitely want to do is keep an eye on your friendship levels. Reaching Best Friend status earns you 100,000 XP (Ultra Friend earns 50,000). If you can watch this and time it right you should use a Lucky Egg before completing the last gift transaction or other interaction so it doubles. Then just finish out the egg with some evolves. During the 12 Days of Friendship event these levels will rise faster than normal, offering lots of ways to get XP.

Raids are also a source of tons of XP (especially during the 12 Days of Friendship event). Using a Lucky Egg before one of these will give you a lot of extra experience, especially if you can chain raids together, such as during a Raid Hour or other event. Legendary raids offer the most, so try to focus on them or other high level opponents. Tackle as many as you can, making sure to check out our counter guides if you need help, and you should earn a lot of XP. In short, the way to level up fast right now is to focus on accomplishing any tasks that you can. Catching, evolving, battling, and winning raids are the best options. Supplement them with Lucky Eggs for even bigger bonuses than normal. But how much do you need to reach level 40?

How to Reach Level 40

Each new level in Pokémon GO requires a lot of additional XP to level up. It’s not a linear progression, so hitting level 39 might seem like you’re close but you still have a long way to go. In total you will need 20 million XP to reach level 40 in the game. The last step is to earn 5 million experience after hitting level 39, which only required 3 million XP for its level up at a total of 15 million. So one fourth of all the XP you need to gain in the game comes from level 39 to 40. The XP boosts at the end of this year will be a big help here, making it feel less like a steep climb and more of a steady progression, but you still have your work cut out for you, depending on where you are currently. Here’s the last 5 levels and how much XP they require…

Level 36 – Earn 1.5 million XP
Total XP – 7.5 million

Level 37 – Earn 2 million XP
Total XP – 9.5 million

Level 38 – Earn 2.5 million XP
Total XP – 12 million

Level 39 – 3 million XP
Total XP – 15 million

Level 40 – 5 million XP
Total XP – 20 million

Hopefully this explains how to level up fast and reach level 40 in Pokémon GO.

- This article was updated on:November 18th, 2020

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