You can go to the shop area at any time to see if the bonus is ready to collect. It will even show as ready even if you hold zero gyms; you just won’t be able to collect anything at that point. But that means that you will be able to immediately go and take gyms, or station your Pokémon at your team’s gyms, and be able to collect the bonus immediately afterwards.
So once your bonus is ready to collect, even if you have a gym, don’t collect it right away. Take note of the gym locations in your area (or whatever area you happen to be going to that day). Go and start raiding or training gyms and getting your Pokémon stationed in as many gyms as possible. THEN collect your bonus before anybody has the chance to kick your Pokémon out of a gym.
To ensure that you hold a gym for longer, train the gym over and over after your team takes it. Increase the prestige to as high of a level as you can get it. Even better, bring other members of your team to the same gym for a mass training session. This means that other teams will have to fight more and more battles, and defeat more Pokémon in order to take away the gym, helping to secure timed bonus Pokecoins for you and your team.
If you are part of a team group on Facebook or some other medium, and you are part of a high-prestige gym with open spots, put notifications out there for your teammates to come and station Pokémon at the gym. Or use the medium for what was discussed in the last paragraph; opening new spots by leveling up the prestige level of the gym.
Niantic and Nintendo are expected to hold plenty of special events in the future, and coin giveaways are included as part of that event. Log on whenever you see a good giveaway happening and play for the prize.
Or, just visit a ton of Pokéstops in order to regenerate your storage of items. You can get so much from them that it essentially takes away the need for coins. The only things that you can buy with coins that you can’t get at a Pokéstop are storage upgrades and bag upgrades.
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