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How to Get Bells Fast in “Animal Crossing: New Horizons”

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Poppy is the author of "A Bard's Lament." She lives in Enoshima and likes to read novels and play video games, especially open-world RPGs.

New Horizons is the latest in the cute animal-themed simulation series Animal Crossing by Nintendo, released for the Switch in March 2020. Players are enjoying crafting, fishing, customizing, building, and exploring to make their islands unique and beautiful.

There are two types of currencies in New Horizons. Nook Miles can be gained by completing tasks and can be used to get new items and travel to other islands. The other currency, also featured in previous Animal Crossing installments, is Bells.

Bells are used to buy furniture and items and pay off loans accumulated by building and expanding your home and adding infrastructure to your island. You can never have too many Bells, so here are some great ways to quickly get rich (without cheating) in Animal Crossing: New Horizons.

1. Sell Shells, Bugs, and Fish

The easiest and most obvious way to make Bells in this game is by selling all the shells and creatures you find to Tom Nook's kids, Timmy and Tommy. They're in the main public tent at the beginning of the game, and later in the shop, Nook's Cranny. Shells can be found near the sea on any beach on your island.

How to Catch Bugs and Fish

  • To catch bugs (butterflies, centipedes, locusts, praying mantises, etc), you'll need a Flimsy Net (using five tree branches) or a Net (using a Flimsy Net and one iron nugget). Craft one of these at a workbench and hit A near a bug to catch it.
  • To catch a fish, craft a Flimsy Fishing Rod (using five tree branches) or a Fishing Rod (using one Flimsy Fishing Rod and one iron nugget) at a workbench and look for the shadows of fish on your island, either in the sea or the river. Press A to make the line land just in front of the fish. When it grabs on (pulling the line under the water), hold A to catch it.

Be sure to donate new creatures to Tom Nook (or Blathers, once the museum is opened). Once that creature has been registered, feel free to sell any more to Timmy and Tommy for a quick profit!

Making Extra Bells

If you don't mind waiting a few days, you can stockpile your bugs and your fish to make a bigger profit when certain characters visit your island. Keep in mind you may need to complete certain story milestones before you can meet them.

  • Flick visits your island on random days and will pay 1.5x as many Bells for any small creature or bug you sell him. This includes hermit crabs as well as insects. This bonus means that if you sell him a highly-priced bug such as a scorpion or tarantula, he'll pay 12,000 Bells instead of 8,000, netting you a fantastic bonus of 4,000 Bells!
  • C.J. also shows up on your island randomly, and will wander around the same spot. Unlike Flick, you'll need to complete a short task for him before he's available to buy from you, but when it's complete, he'll also pay 1.5x as much for any fish you have to sell to him.

Though you may not want to wait around for Flick and C.J. to make their appearances, it's well worth stockpiling and making a killing when you meet them.


Fishing in Animal Crossing: New Horizons

Fishing in Animal Crossing: New Horizons

2. Seek the Money Rock

You may see rocks all over your island that spit out goodies when you hit them with a Shovel (craft a Flimsy Shovel with 5 hardwood and a Shovel with one Flimsy Shovel and one iron nugget at any work station). Once per day, a rock holding Bells will appear on your island. Be sure to find this daily and reap its rewards!

Tips for Hitting the Money Rock

  • Be sure your character hasn't eaten any fruit (it'll appear as 0/10 in the corner of the screen). If they've eaten fruit, they'll be strong enough to break the rock right away, which you don't want for now.
  • It's helpful to build a fence or dig a hole near the rock. Your character is pushed backwards after hitting the rock once, and you need to hit it quickly many times for it to drop all the potential items. Stand between the fence and the rock/hole so this doesn't happen.
  • Hit the rock over and over with your shovel until nothing more falls out. If you do it right, you'll be quickly picking up thousands of Bells!
  • After all the items have been dropped, feel free to eat a fruit and break it to find one more item.
Finding the money rock

Finding the money rock

3. Check Out the Hot Item of the Day

Once Nook's Cranny is up and running, Timmy and Tommy will be paying double for a random item for that day. Always ask what the hot item of the day is so you can sell it for profit.

It's always a good idea to store materials in your house so they can be quickly accessed to craft many of these hot items. If you're lucky, it'll be something you can craft a large number of, quickly netting you tens of thousands of Bells!

4. Grow and Sell Foreign Fruit

When you get your island, the native fruit will either be apples, cherries, oranges, peaches, or pears. You can sell the native fruit to Tommy and Timmy, but foreign fruit nets way more Bells (500 Bells apiece).

You can get your hands on foreign fruit in a number of ways. Firstly, you can buy a Nook Miles Ticket and fly to a random empty island. If you're lucky, you'll come across an island with fruits different to your own. Grab as many as you can and plant several of them on your island.

Another way is by visiting your friends' islands, if you have Nintendo's Online Service. You can trade, pick your own, or ask them to bring their own island's fruit or send them to you by post. Once you have all five on your island, you can plant and grow them, accumulating a daily profit.

Trade fruit with your friends

Trade fruit with your friends

5. Shake Trees

This isn't a super quick way to find Bells, but it's an extra task you can do. Sometimes, when your character shakes a fully grown tree (be sure to put away any axes or shovels you're carrying), some Bells will fall out. This can be a nice little bonus. Just watch out for wasps!

6. Find the Buried Treasure

Once a day, there will be 1,000 Bells buried somewhere on your island, in a different spot every day. Approach it and dig up the treasure with your shovel. Easy money!

Finding 1,000 Bells in Animal Crossing: New Horizons

Finding 1,000 Bells in Animal Crossing: New Horizons

7. Sell Turnips for Profit

Every Sunday morning from 5 AM until noon, Daisy Mae will visit your island, selling turnips. Though it does involve a little gambling, it's a great way to make Bells easily. Here are some tips.

  • Save up some Bells for Sunday. The more you have to spend, the higher your profit potential!
  • Find Daisy Mae on your island. She'll be wandering around somewhere. She'd easily identifiable by the fact she's carrying turnips on her head.
  • Make a note of the price of turnips. This should be between the 90-110 Bells range. If it's higher than that, it might not be the best idea to buy because it'll be harder to make a profit.
  • If the price is good, buy as many turnips as you can. Keep in mind you can't store these vegetables in your house.
  • From the next Monday to Saturday, you'll be able to ask Tommy and Timmy about turnip prices. These will be different from the morning to the afternoon. It's up to you whether you're happy with the price or want to wait for another day to sell - just be sure the price is higher than what you paid!

For many Animal Crossing: New Horizons players, turning over turnips is one of their biggest sources of income. Try it out and see how many Bells you can make from Daisy Mae's turnips.

Help, the Turnip Prices are Too Low!

You might find you've paid 90-something Bells per turnip only for Tommy and Timmy to be offering 40! If this happens, ask your friends what their prices are and visit their islands. There's always a different price depending on where you are, so be sure to find who's selling at the highest price and head on over.

8. Grow a Money Tree

Remember those glowy holes that appear once a day on your island to yield 1,000 Bells a day? After digging them up, you can deposit more Bells to grow a money tree!

It's best to bury 10,000 Bells (go to your wallet and select it, and choose "10,000 Bells" from the menu) then bury them in the glowing hole. After a couple of days it'll grow into a money tree, yielding you an easy profit of 20,000 Bells!

Money tree in Animal Crossing: New Horizons

Money tree in Animal Crossing: New Horizons

9. Buy and Redeem Bell Vouchers

Got loads of Miles but low on Bells? At the Nook Stop in city hall, you can redeem Miles and get Bell Vouchers. These are 500 Miles each and can be sold to Tommy and Timmy for 3,000 Bells.

Take care with this method, however, as many players would argue that Miles are much more valuable.

10. Farm Tarantulas and Scorpions

Did you know that you can easily make 300,000 Bells per Nook Miles trip by farming tarantulas and scorpions (depending on the time of year and which hemisphere you're on)? This is a great way to quickly make Bells and pay off your debts. Check out the video guide below for more information!

This peaceful and sweet game is turning out to be a huge hit! Though making Bells is only a small part of New Horizons, it's a necessary endeavor that'll allow you to expand your home, build more infrastructure on your island, and net you some amazing items. Have fun!

© 2020 Poppy