PokéCoins are the currency used in the Pokémon GO store and they can be pretty hard to come by if you’re not willing to spend real money. Luckily, there are ways to earn coins for free.
Station your Pokémon at a gym
Earning power: 10 PokéCoins and 500 stardust per day per Pokémon
Once you reach Level 5, you earn the right to battle your Pokémon at gyms. Reaching Level 5 comes with an important responsibility: choosing your team. Gyms are colored according to the team that is stationed at the gym.
Gyms can house a maximum of 10 Pokémon, depending on its prestige level. If a gym has a level 3 prestige, it can house up to 3 Pokémon. If the gym has fewer Pokémon than its prestige level allows, and it is a friendly gym (i.e. it is occupied by the same team that you chose), then you can station your Pokémon there. For each day that your Pokémon fends off enemy trainers, you will receive a Defender Bonus of 10 PokéCoins and 500 stardust.
Beware: if you station a Pokémon at a gym, you won’t be able to use that Pokémon in other battles until it has been defeated. Once your Pokémon has been defeated, the Pokémon will be returned to your collection.
Keep your eyes peeled for special events that might come up in your area. Events may offer free PokéCoins as a prize for attending and winning events. Check the official Pokémon events page and Pokémon GO website for more details.
Cheats and Hacks
Some sites have offered insights into how to cheat to get free coins, but this is definitely not advisable. Niantic Labs, the developers of Pokémon GO, have already patched cheats and banned members for trying to scam free coins.