Pokémon GO Soft Ban: How to Avoid and Remove Soft Ban

by Aaron Roussey Updated On Oct 26, 2023 Published On Sep 28, 2021 Tips

This article will show you the what is the soft ban issue in Pokémon GO; how you can tell if you've been banned and how to avoid and remove the soft ban. Let's get started.

What is a Pokémon GO Soft Ban?

A soft ban is a sanction placed by Niantic on the player in the Pokemon Go game if they determine that the user has been cheating. This cheating involves the use of a spoofing tool to change locations within the game to unlock rewards quickly compared to the normal way.

Besides the location-changing tool, if the users play the game while driving or just traveling faster than normal to hatch an egg and attain other features, it also results in a soft ban. How do I know if my account is soft banned? The best indicators are:

  1. Traveling to a Pokestop and tapping on it to spin. Instead of getting items, you will get an error message Try Again Later over and over again.
  2. When trying to catch a Pokemon (which this game is all about), the Pokemons will run away. The Pokémon will flee and you will not be able to catch them until the soft ban is lifted.

pokemon go soft ban

The Duration of a Pokémon GO Soft Ban

Normally, a soft ban in Pokémon GO will last for about 12 hours, after which the ban is lifted and you can continue to play the game.

Note, however, that Niantic may choose to impose a stiffer penalty if you get soft banned repeatedly. On average it takes about 3 soft bans for your account to be banned permanently.

How Many Times Can You Get Soft Banned in Pokémon GO?

If it is your first offence, then you may get soft banned once for 12 hours. Repeat offenders can get banned for 24 hours, then a week and then a month.

While Niantic doesn't offer clear guidelines of how many times you can be soft banned before receiving a permanent ban, there are cases of individuals who got soft banned just 4 times before getting a permanent ban.

What Can Get You Soft Banned?

While Niantic has not shared a list of offences that can get your account soft banned, many people have found themselves in this situation after doing the following;

  • Using GPS spoofing apps without restrictions to play the game
  • Logging in on a device in another zone or country faster than it would take to travel to the new location
  • Using the same account on multiple devices
  • Playing the game while moving at a high speed of more than 50km/h

It is also not clear which one of these offences is more serious than the other, but it seems like jumping to a new continent and GPS spoofing attract a far stiffer penalty of more than 12 hours sometimes.

What Happens If You Get Soft Banned in Pokémon GO?

Though a soft ban in Pokemon Go isn't a strike put in place to your gaming account, it may still disrupt your gameplay. The most significant impact of a soft ban in Pokemon Go is that you wouldn't be able to catch wild Pokemon. Moreover, looting Pokestops would be banned.

Furthermore, the soft ban generally varies, depending on your offense type. However, it lasts for 12 hours. Normally, a soft ban will cause the following to happen;

  • Any Pokémon that you try to catch will instantly flee from you
  • Stored quest rewards will flee from you
  • You will not be able to get any rewards from PokéStops
  • You can still catch Raid Bosses
  • You can still spin PokeStops
  • On a rolling basis, the maximum is 3500 Pokemon/7 days
  • Players can start a battle and then catch the Pokemon later (3 to 4 hours)

How to Avoid Soft Ban in Pokemon GO

Tip 1. Follow a Cooldown Time

Performing an action marks the location in the game and you're put under the cooldown. The distance between the location and the action performed determines when you need to wait for the cooldown.

So the cooldown time will not start until you haven't performed an action in the game. You will need to wait for the cooldown time to finish before performing another action or teleport to a new location.

You can follow the cooldown chart below and be safe from getting a soft ban. If you cannot figure out the exact time, then choose the nearest time mentioned in the chart. This will help you to take extra precautions.

Distance Cooldown
1 Km 1 min
2 Km 1 min
4 Km 2 mins
10 Km 8 mins
12 Km 9 mins
15 Km 11 mins
20 Km 13 mins
25 Km 15 mins
30 Km 18 mins
40 Km 22 mins
45 Km 23 mins
60 Km 25 mins
80 Km 27 mins
100 Km 30 mins
125 Km 33 mins
140 Km 34 mins
150 Km 36 mins
180 Km 39 mins
200 Km 42 mins
250 Km 46 mins
300 Km 50 mins
350 Km 53 mins
400 Km 56 mins
500 Km 64 mins
600 Km 72 mins
750 Km 82 mins
800 Km 86 mins
900 Km 93 mins
950 Km 97 mins
1000 Km 100 mins
1150 Km 111 mins
1200 Km 115 mins
1250 Km 118 mins
1266+ Km 120 mins

Tip 2. Spoof Safely for iPhone

Follow these steps to teleport and avoid soft ban:

  1. Enter in the coordinations and teleport your GPS using iOS GPS changer such as MockGo.
  2. Log in to Pokemon GO.
  3. You can now raid and snipe in the game. However, it would be best if you stayed in the area by using local live maps. Refer to the cooldown chart when you want to snipe. We usually use live real-time maps to teleport Chicago, London, Sydney, Singapore, and Las Vegas.
  4. Log out from Pokemon Go.
  5. Wait for a while before going back into the game. Refer to the wait time from the cooldown chart (distance traveled). We recommend waiting for 2 hours which is the maximum wait time.
  6. Enter in the coordinations and teleport again.
  7. Log in to Pokemon Go.
  8. Repeat the steps from 3 - 5.

Tip 3. Teleport safely without getting banned with MockGo

You can use the MockGo iOS location spoofer's teleport feature with a cooldown timer to help you avoid a soft ban.

  • 1. Select a location on the map of MockGo and search the address or coordinates using the search bar.
  • 2. When the location is showed on the map, click on Move Here button from the pop-up window.
  • 3. Your GPS of your device will be teleported immediately. The program will also calculate the cooldown time automatically you need to wait before next move.

set a desired location

If you follow the instructions without deviating, then the likelihood of getting a soft ban is very low. Otherwise, you will get soft banned and have to wait for 2 hours before logging back in. Constantly getting a soft ban can result in a permanent ban.

Tip 4. Spoof Safety for Android

To start spoofing in Pokemon Go, you will need first to set up a spoofing method. Setting up a method for spoofing allows you many advantages. There are multiple methods which have their pros and cons.

The two methods that we are going to talk about are widely used for spoofing on Android devices. One of the methods is easy to execute, while the other method is hard.

Easy Method - You do not need to root your device. We are going to use a PGSharp modified app.

Pros:

  1. It is easy to install and supports most Android devices running the OS Android 11.0
  2. The Pokemon GO modified app comes with a built-in joystick and many features. One of the features gives you the ability to throw an all-time 100% excellent curveball.
  3. The app has a free version with limited features. The paid version gives you access to all of the features.

Cons:

  1. Getting a strike from Niantic has a higher chance
  2. It is annoying to buy and spend Poke Coins.
  3. There is no update (currently of writing) from the PGSharp developer for improvements.

To use the app, first, you would need to uninstall the Pokemon Go app and then install the PGSharp app.

Difficult Method - You would've to root your Android device. Use Smali Patcher to spoof location in Pokemon GO. You can use this method on the Pokemon Go app and would not need a modified version of the game.

Pros:

  1. The chances of getting a strike from the game devs are low.

Cons:

  1. Cannot have access to special features available on PGSharp.
  2. Requires the player to unlock the bootloader and root the device.
  3. You can always buy a pre-rooted Smail patcher device and save the hassle
  4. Rooting a device can be complicated. So if you have decided to root the device, then you need to understand the following:
  • It can void your official warranty
  • Instructions to root a device can be unclear
  • There are many hit-and-trial
  • It can damage the firmware of your device
  • It can result in the loss of data or a privacy breach

Other Tips for Avoiding a Soft Ban

  1. Travel around a location with normal walking speed. If you want to increase the speed, we recommend it be closer to a biking speed.
  2. Wait for the time it takes you to fly to another country (if you're teleporting to that country). Don't jump between countries in seconds.
  3. Teleport back to your original location during sniping.

How to Remove Pokémon GO Soft Ban

To remove a soft ban, you first of all need to figure out what you have done wrong to cause the ban.

If you jumped to a new country or region too fast using a location spoofing tool, you should set the location back to the original before opening Pokémon GO again.

Of course, it is often best to avoid getting banned in the first place. If you choose to play the game using a location spoofing tool, you should consider choosing a location spoofer that is fully functional and one that will not expose your activities to Niantic.

We have listed other effective ways to remove it from your gaming account here:

Creating a new account

If you have been soft-banned and cannot catch a Pokemon or participate in Gym battles, then start by creating a new account and uninstalling Pokemon Go on your phone.
Next, reinstall the game, run it, and enter our original account credentials to remove the soft ban.

Visit a PokéStop multiple times

Another way to get out of a soft ban is to go to a PokéStop and spin it and close it about 40 times. This solution may seem a bit hectic and you will not get any rewards from it, but most people find that this is a good way to get out of a soft ban.

Wait out the soft ban period

This is probably the simplest approach. Just wait out the soft ban period and let it be lifted from your account automatically, which only lasts a few hours. Once your ban is removed, use precautions to avoid any such incident from happening again. You can still use a spoofer but do not change your location too often, which may bring your account under Niantic's radar.

Getting soft banned shouldn't be taken lightly. It renders the game unplayable for an uncertain amount of time and that can really get annoying. The biggest violation happens if you're caught using GPS spoofers and external software carelessly, which the game will detect as suspicious activity.

This can be avoided by using the right tools such as MockGo, an app that simulates walking instead of teleporting to other cities in a blink of an eye, the latter of which Niantic will tag as suspicious activity.

If you have any comments and suggestions about the article, please feel free to talk to us through the comments section below!

Aaron Roussey
Meet Aaron, the tech-savvy and team member who has touched more grass than all of us combined because he cannot miss a Legendary raid in Pokémon GO. And when he's not trying to catch them all, you can find him on his computer writing all you need to know about phones, games, computers, and everything tech!
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