7 ways to earn credits fast in Starfield

Starfield credit sticks.
(Image credit: Windows Central)

If you literally want to get far in Starfield, you're going to have to learn how to make some serious credits. Starships cost a ton, and so does the best gear and weapons. Thankfully, there are plenty of vendors willing to sell premium items to you, but you have to meet their prices if you want to acquire especially useful goods and spacecraft. 

Here are the best ways to earn credits fast in Starfield, starting with the methods that you should start working on first. The sheer options available help make Starfield one of the best Xbox games and best PC games out there.

1. Rank up your Commerce Skill

You can earn more from your sales if you unlock and rank up your Commerce Skill. (Image credit: Windows Central)

You can pick up almost anything and everything in Starfield and then proceed to sell it. But it isn't worth doing until you unlock and rank up your Commerce Skill. You see, even though an object's value is shown when looking at it in your inventory screen, you won't be able to sell it for its full value unless you have high Commerce. 

2. Pick up Credit Sticks and valuable goods

You can find valuable items or helpful ones by looking around. (Image credit: Windows Central)

While wandering around various locations, you'll find plenty of items that you can pick up and carry with you. Once you've actually increased your Commerce Skill, work on taking the most valuable items back to your ship and then selling them ASAP. If you're encumbered (have too many items) your oxygen will disappear faster, and you won't be able to travel as quickly. So you don't want to hang on to items for too long. 

Just so you know, the Frontier (and most other ships you can buy) have a captain's locker near the pilot's seat. You can store things in here if you need to make more room in your inventory.

If you need help knowing what to drop and what to keep, check out our Starfield inventory management guide.

3. Have digipicks and use them whenever possible

Successfully solving digipick puzzles allows you to open locked door and boxes so you can claim rewards. (Image credit: Windows Central)

From the start of Starfield, you can have digipicks in your inventory. These small, weightless items make it possible for you to pick locks as long as you successfully complete a small puzzle first. I've personally been able to grab a good chunk of credits behind previously locked doors or within locked boxes this way. So make sure to stock up on more digipicks whenever possible, and constantly be checking every box or door in an area to see if you can open it. You can even hack into GalBank kiosks this way, although you will have to deal with the bounty that gets put on your head afterward. 

If you need help, you can check out our guide on how to solve digipick puzzles.

4. Create a manufacturing outpost and sell your goods

You can create an outpost as long as you have the necessary materials. (Image credit: Bethesda Softworks (screenshot))

If you have the resources required, you can create outposts on the planets that you explore. You can even create workbenches or manufacturing robots to produce valuable components. Instead of using them for yourself, gather these products and take them to a vendor and sell them. 

5. Resort to pickpocketing

You can pickpocket NPCs in Starfield. (Image credit: Windows Central)

This is yet another Skill that you have to unlock before you can actually use it. But as you rank Pickpocketing up, you'll be able to get more valuables for your efforts. Just note that this can put a target on your back as bounties are heaped upon you for bad deeds.

6. Smuggle prohibited goods onto planets and sell them

You can bring contraband onto planets as long as you have  (Image credit: Ubisoft)

Pickpocketing not enough for you? You can make a ton of credits by smuggling contraband onto planets and selling to the right vendors. You get scanned when approaching most settled planets, so you'll need to invest in shielded contraband cargo holds, so the scanners can't detect what you're carrying. Aurora or Blend are good prohibited items to start with earlier on, and both can be obtained on Neon. 

7. Complete faction quests

Crimson Fleet is a faction of pirates.  (Image credit: Bethesda Softworks)

There are several different Starfield factions to join including the Crimson Fleet, Freestar Collective, and United Colonies. Whenever you successfully complete a mission from one of these factions, you'll be paid a significant number of credits. Take on more missions of this sort to gain large chunks of money in one go. 

Rolling in credits

Money talks, regardless of what planet you're on. You're going to want to make sure your wallet is flush with credits if you want to have the best gear, spaceships, and weapons available in Starfield. There are a number of ways to acquire credits, but if you want to make a good chunk in one go, you'll need to work on ranking up your Commerce Skill and taking on large missions from factions. 

Of course, keeping an eye out for wayward credit sticks and valuable items that you can resell when back at a vendor is a guaranteed way to have a steady income of cash. Just make sure no one catches you stealing if that's the way you want to go about things. 

Rebecca Spear
Editor and Reviewer

Self-professed gaming geek, Rebecca Spear, is one of Windows Central's editors and reviewers with a focus on gaming handhelds, PC gaming, and laptops. When she isn't checking out the latest games on Xbox Game Pass, PC, ROG Ally, or Steam Deck; she can be found digital drawing with a Wacom tablet. She's written thousands of articles with everything from editorials, reviews, previews, features, previews, and hardware reviews over the last few years. If you need information about anything gaming-related, her articles can help you out. She also loves testing game accessories and any new tech on the market. You can follow her @rrspear on X (formerly Twitter).