Pokemon Go Gift Management Advanced Guide

by SandheepNair

Hey guys, I noticed there isn’t really a comprehensive explanation on the best or most efficient way to send and open gifts in the game. I’ve created a guide below and would appreciate your help to improve it with your input. I’m a returning player (came back in September) so I may have gotten some details wrong. Appreciate the help.

Disclaimer: This guide is for the average city player (casual or hardcore) that has relative ease in spinning pokestops every day. If you’re a rural player, the content of a gift is more important that any gift giving guideline. Nevertheless, it may be good for to understand the gifting habits of some of your friends on Pokemon Go.

Intro

Gift giving and opening is an essential part of the Pokemon Go game for a few key reasons. Primarily, it’s the single quickest way to gain XP and level up in the game. Trainers generally combine a friendship milestone (usually ultra friends and best friends) with lucky eggs to maximize XP gains. However, many new and returning players are often confused as to what is the gift sending and opening etiquette. Is it mean for me to open a gift and not give one back? Would people be offended if I don’t give them gifts regularly. This guide will help you build your friendship in the fastest and most efficient way possible (while not offending your friends).

Prioritize Getting the Blue Orb 

The most important thing to remember in efficient gifting is to get as many people as possible to have the blue orb around their avatar daily. The blue orb means that you have interacted with that person via a gift, trade, raid, exraid invite, battling together in gyms or PVP battle that day. This means no matter what else you do with that person today, you will not “improve” your friendship level.

In terms of gifting priority, be aware of any rural players in your friends list. If you’ve added someone and they’ve informed you that they rely on gifts for balls because they have no pokestops, prioritize these folks for gifts. I usually give them the nickname “rural player” in my friends list. These players are almost guaranteed to open your gifts daily and will also likely rarely return a gift (which is not a big deal for a city player, more on this later).

Give Gifts Throughout the Day, But Only Open at Night (After Raids End) 

The best way to maximize blue orbs is to make sure as many people open your gifts as possible. There is a gift opening limit of 20 but a 100 gift giving limit. What I do is open my friends list and arrange by gifts. From the beginning of the day, I will give gifts to friends who have given me gifts without opening their gifts. You will have to regularly do this as you can only hold a maximum of 10 gifts at a time. By the end of the day, some (or many) would have opened your gift and you’ll see the blue orb around their avatar. For these people, you don’t need to open their gift (saving you some slots in your 20 gift-opening limit).

The best way to maximize blue orbs is to make sure as many people open your gifts as possible. There is a gift opening limit of 20 but a 100 gift giving limit. What I do is open my friends list and arrange by gifts. From the beginning of the day, I will give gifts to friends who have given me gifts without opening their gifts. You will have to regularly do this as you can only hold a maximum of 10 gifts at a time. By the end of the day, some (or many) would have opened your gift and you’ll see the blue orb around their avatar. For these people, you don’t need to open their gift (saving you some slots in your 20 gift-opening limit).

De-prioritize Family & Local Community Members 

This is a common mistake even experienced players make. If you’re involved in an active local community, chances are you may increase your friendship at some point in the day via raids, trades, battling together in gyms or PVP battles. That means that you may not even need to send gifts to each other that day. Keep that in mind when building friendship with people in the local community. Keep gift opening as close to midnight as possible and if possible, avoid it altogether by interacting in other ways.

Don’t be Nice and Do it at Night.

A common “etiquette” among newbies and returning players is to always return a gift when you open one. And if you don’t have a gift to return, you shouldn’t open the gift. I had this philosophy as well when I was a returning player, but the truth is that it just isn’t very efficient. It relies on every player having regular access to pokestops. Daily players (or “hardcore” players) are perfectly fine with you not giving them gifts regularly, as long as you open their gifts regularly.

So at the end of the day, arrange your friends list by gifts and open 20 gifts from people who don’t have blue orbs around their avatar. Pay careful attention to friendship levels that are about to become ultra or best friends. I usually mark these people with “1 day left” as a nickname and try to coordinate with the player on when to open it so we can both pop a lucky egg. If you don’t know the player in real life and have no way to communicate with them, you can either 1) give them a gift and let them decide when to open it, or 2) rename your buddy to when you will be popping the lucky egg to maybe give them a hint. I usually put “LEgg9pmPST” and open it the following night at 9pm for example.

The only reason you shouldn’t hit your daily limit should be because you don’t have that many gifts to open from avatars with no blue orb. If your bag is full, dump any berries you dont need at a gym for stardust, delete all your low healing potions and revives (if you’re a higher level, you only need max potions and max revives) and dump your pokeballs (red balls) because chances are the next gift will also give you balls. [NOTE: This does not apply to rural players that absolutely should not let anything go to waste]

Exceptions to the Rule

As mentioned earlier, rural players can ignore this completely as gifts are an important tool in the game.

Long-distance 7km eggs is also a relatively good reason to ignore the blue orb and occasionally open a gift from someone further away. Best practice though would be to have a few long-distance friends to minimize this issue. Another way around this issue is if you can predict when you’ll need that 7km egg, don’t give them a gift that day until you’ve opened their gift.

Another occasion to ignore this guide is during a hatch event. During this period, people tend to load up on 7km eggs and will likely use up their entire 20 gift openings trying to get 7km eggs. And this can happen at completely random times of day (depending on when their eggs hatch). If you have to resort to opening a gift from someone with a blue orb, then this is a good excuse to do so.

Other Minor/Major Pet Peeves

Here are some things to take note of.

  • If you hold the last gift in order to trigger ultra or best friend and have no way to coordinate with the other player, don’t hold on to that last gift for too long. General rule of thumb is to not hold it beyond the next Community Day (which is a good time to pop a Lucky Egg anyway and open the gift).
  • Don’t distribute your trainer code if you cannot commit to gift giving/opening. If your code is on some mega list that you can no longer track, go to your trainer code screen and reset for a new trainer code (this will not remove any friends but just means anyone who has the old number wont be able to add you).
  • Do not delete someone directly after reaching ultra/best friend status. This is a MAJOR issue. The other person will not receive the XP if you delete them before they open Pokemon Go and get the notification. Best thing to do is to not delete them at all, but if you need the space, wait a few days until you are sure they’ve been online (they caught a pokemon, changed buddies, etc).
  • If you accidentally open a gift that triggers ultra/best friend status, don’t keep quiet about it. Contact the player and inform them. If they’re lucky, they will be able to open the game and quickly add a lucky egg before they receive the notification about the friendship increase.
  • Don’t prioritize gift opening/giving by friendship level. You may end up going weeks without giving or opening gifts from lower level friends which will probably lead them to deleting you due to lack of interaction.
  • Finally, be forgiving of your friends’ errors when they happen. Occasionally, mistakes happen between friends, even with the best of intentions.

My hope is to continually update and amend this guide as new features are added to the game. Please let me know your thoughts and if my guide makes sense.

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