Great Foursquare Cheats

I recently had someone accuse me of cheating on Foursquare.

I was accused of this because I cheated on Foursquare. So it was  a fair call. A while back I wrote a post explaining why I cheat at Foursquare, so I don’t want to go into that again.

All I’ll add is that there isn’t much to Foursquare, and too many people are invested in it. I refuse to legitimize people’s obsession with Mayorships and Badges by obeying rules that are meaningless and easily broken. If your day is really made or broken because someone takes your Mayorship, please, put down your phone and get a puppy. I swear, puppies are a lot more fulfilling in the long run.

But since I know a lot of people are more interested in gaming Foursquare than using it the way they are supposed to, (because how fun is that?) here are some of the things I’ve done that work, make enemies, and go against both the rules and spirit of Foursquare. Enjoy!

1) Faulty GPS Checkins – My phone’s GPS isn’t the best. For some reason, it often thinks I’m miles away from where I really am. This used to frustrate me when I would try to check into a place I was actually at.

If you see this happening, it means you can actually check into a LOT of places you aren’t at! If this happens to you a lot, try looking at what is close by according to Foursquare. If you’re at home, and it thinks you’re a couple of miles away, start checking into those places. You could become Mayor of an ass-ton of venues, without even leaving your couch. This is how I managed to become mayor of my work place – much to the chagrin of my boss. 🙂

Remember, checking into a place a bunch of times won’t make you Mayor. Only checking into a place the most days in a month will get you a Mayorship. So just set a time each day to check into places you aren’t at, and eventually you’ll get a lot of those tiny yellow crown symbols.

2) Make stuff up – This is a no brainer. If you want to be Mayor of more places, start creating them! A lot of people invent venues for public bathrooms, their parking space, or homes. No one else is going to bother checking into “Don Noodlemeyer’s Bologna Factory,” so you can become Mayor of that pretty quickly. (And remember, 10 Mayorships and you get a badge!)

3) Moving the location pin – This is probably the sneakiest way to get a check-in, and frankly I’m surprised Foursquare hasn’t done anything about it.

When you reach a certain level on the site, (and I swear, I don’t know how I got to this level myself,) you have the ability to edit locations. On a Google-generated map, you can grab the red location pins and move them somewhere else.

That means, if you want to be mayor of the Eiffel Tower, all you need to do is go to the Eiffel Tower’s location on the Foursquare site, pick it up, and drop it in your area. Then zoom into it on the map, fine tune a little by dropping it closer and closer to your home… and presto! The check in for the Eiffel Tower is now in your living room. Check into it as many times as you can in a month, get the mayorship, then put it back. Or don’t! Who cares? Obviously Foursquare doesn’t, or you wouldn’t be able to do this in the first place.

4) Badge Lists – Foursquare isn’t all about Mayorships, it’s also about badges. Making that happen means knowing which ones are available. There are a lot of lists of available badges and the ways you can get them. This is a good list from The Kruser to use as a reference.

Armed with this, you can see what you’ll need to do to get some of these. For instance, the Pizza badge needs 20 check ins at pizzerias. So anytime you’re anywhere, look around to see if you’re near a pizzeria and check your ass in!

You can also check for places with a lot of check-ins, check into it yourself, and get the Swarm badge! Or schedule a reminder for yourself to do some shout out that got people a badge for something in the past… It’s all about being prepared with the instructions that worked for others before.


  1. Expect a hit team to be dispatched from Foursquare any day now, not that you should worry because

    A) they are only paying them with “Badges” so how good could they be?

    B) they are using the app to find you, so even if they are pro’s most likely your neighbor will get whacked instead of you.

    C) since they are foursquare fanatics they will most likely just drive close enough to claim their prize and then be done with it.

  2. I think I got banned or something, for about 10 days or so I’ve been unable to get points from check ins and appear to have 0 mayorships instead of 150ish. I’ve even taken gaps of 2 days here and there between attempts and no dice. And yes I cheated.

  3. my friend got the foursquare kibosh. they took away all his mayorships and badges. they e-mailed him telling him they were going to do so and he e-mailed them back asking if he could play again and they e-mailed back saying “mmmm, maybe”

  4. love the article! I actually got so pissed at this stupid girl in my neighborhood checking into the most stupidest things like “The Stairs to ___ road”, “Her Bathroom”, “Bedroom”, “Livingroom” that I made up a new foursquare identity and started checking into her rooms… stole all her mayorships and continued to check into her rooms every day.. i wake up every morning at 5:30am to yoga, eat breakfast and check into her rooms. It’s hysterical.. you should see the comments I put.. “Ho needs to clean this place up”. “Used condoms everywhere, watch out”.

    It’s amazing how many losers take foursquare so seriously and take their mayorships so seriously. I think it’s hysterical.. pick a loser victim with 100 + mayorships and start checking into their turf… watch them go nuts!

    OOH, the best part of this story is the girl had an actual FACE photo of herself (now she’s removed it) as her foursquare badge.. I screenshot the photo and created my own version… and i’ve been checking into the most random locations in the neighborhood and leaving behind her photo.

    now THAT’s how you have fun on foursquare! 😉

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