Avoiding the Pokemon Go Your Bag is Full Message

After you’ve been playing Pokemon Go for a while, you’ll start to figure out Pokestop routes, and at first you’ll be swimming in Pokeballs. In fact, the first time you see the dreaded Pokemon Go “Your Bag is Full” message, you might not be that worried about it since you’ll probably have hundreds of Pokeballs at that point. Time will pass though, and eventually you may find that the “Your Bag is Full” problem will become more and more of a nuisance that prevents you from catching all the precious pokemon your heart so desires. Read on below and we’ll explain how to manage your backpack so that you always have plenty of what you need to catch ’em all.

First World Problems

It turns out that either by random chance, or a stroke of brilliance, Niantec injected an interesting bit of “scarcity friction” into Pokemon Go by limiting the amount of items you can carry in your Backpack and giving you an increasing variety of items that can drop from Pokestops as you level up. This makes pokeballs at first seem ubiquitous, and then gradually seem incredibly scarce, until you figure out that a) you are getting fewer pokeball drops from each pokestop (because you are getting other things instead) b) your bag is full of other items you don’t use as much, limiting the space for pokeballs. Since backpack space is limited, I suggest the following prioritization:

  • Low Priority – Potions and Revives – These items are pretty much only needed for Gym battles, and in the early game you won’t be doing that much. I reserve between 60-100 spots for these items, but I don’t battle that actively yet. Unless you are in Gyms constantly, don’t let these items fill up your bag.
  • Medium Priority – Pokeballs and Razz Berries – These should make up the meat of what fills your bag. Depending on your access to Pokestops, you may want to allow for a larger quantity so that you can use your extra stock as buffer until the next time you can make a Pokestop run. You should keep enough Razz Berries to use them liberally when capturing elusive pokemon, but 50-80 is normally plenty and you can get by with less.
  • High Priority – Incense, Lures, Lucky Eggs – While you can buy these items, the number that you get for free is very limited. They don’t take up much space, so they aren’t anything to worry about. Don’t throw them out.

In case you didn’t realize, you can throw away any consumable just by opening your Backpack and tapping on the “trash can” next to the item you want to thin out. A dialog will open where you can specify the quantity you want to purge, and then you’ll be asked to confirm before they get erased.

Pro Tip To avoid the dreaded “Your Bag is Full” message, make sure to check your bag status before hitting a Pokestop. Its especially important to check after a level up because the “level up rewards” can often push you way negative on bag space, often with low priority items. Chuck the stuff you don’t want, and make space for more precious pokeballs!

Refueling and Remixing

For most active Trainers, there will come a time when you run out of pokeballs. Don’t be embarassed Trainer, its a natural part of free to play and it happens to us all sometimes. The solution is to hit some Pokestops, but in fact it is not quite that simple. If you visit just one Pokestop and camp out, you will get 3-4 items about every 5 minutes if you are really on top of things. The catch is, as you level up those 3-4 items could be exclusively non-pokeballs. This means that for refueling you are going to want to keep two things in mind:

  • Pokestop Density – When you are really low on pokeballs, most of the time a single stop isn’t really going to cut it unless you are hanging out for hours. You need to search your area for a place where several Pokestops are in close proximity. Pokestops tend to be near historical sites or landmarks, so even if you live in rural areas you can still often find a cluster near points of interest. There are various Pokestop maps online that can also give you a hand.
  • Remixing – It is essential that you throw away items that you don’t need, or won’t need soon. If you are planning to do a lot of gym battling, you might keep some potions and revives in reserve, but if not than make sure you are cleaning them out regularly. Also, as your bag gets full be sure you are chucking the lowest form of items first. Regular potions go in the trash for me now almost instantly.


If you are in it for the long haul, it is possible to upgrade your bag for 200 coins. This won’t completely solve the problem, but it will create some relief especially earlier in the game when you are leveling up more often. Earning the coins at lower levels will be a labor of love likely spread over the better part of a month, or of course, you can just buy them.

Hopefully with these tips, the Pokemon Go “Your Bag is Full” message will no longer keep you down. Do you have any other Pokemon go questions or tips? Let us know in the comments section!