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11 Best Ways To Get XP in Payday 2

11 Best Ways To Get XP in Payday 2

11 Best Ways To Get XP in Payday 2 Thumbnail

If you are looking for a fun online game to play, Payday 2 is a fantastic option. Overkill Software's multiplayer heist game still has a robust online community, with an average of about 25,000 PC players a day over the past month. But getting access to higher-level heists with other players will require some leveling up on your part.

The best ways to get XP in Payday 2 are grinding and playing heists with high payouts. Take advantage of stealth and heist bonuses, secure loot bags, and raise your infamy level to make the most of your XP farming. Earn fast XP by playing Election Day (a 20% bonus) and Cook-Off (up to 1,200 bags).

Are you ready to exit the noob stage and start piling up XP? Read on to learn 11 great ways you can raise your XP in Payday 2.

Best Ways To Grind XP

Grinding is an all too familiar part of a gamer's life. Payday 2's reputation system is no different. While the first level takes less than 1,000 XP to reach, higher levels require more and more XP. Grinding to level 100, which requires 1,000,000 XP, takes a lot of work and time.

If you wish to grind effectively, it is vital to know how you can work your heists to your advantage. Here are the best ways to grind up in Payday 2:

Stealth Bonus

You can gain stealth bonuses by playing through stealth-able missions without setting off any alarms. Heists that offer these bonuses have a small ghost-shaped icon next to them when you pass your cursor over them on Stealth bonuses carry over to the next heist you do, so it is wise to use your stealth bonus to increase your gains from high-experience missions.

Heist Bonus

Payday 2 keeps players on their toes by using heist bonuses and heist penalties to incentivize pursuing a variety of missions rather than playing the same one over and over again. When perusing the menu, heists with a bonus glow yellow while heists with penalties glow red.

Heist bonuses and penalties can occur at random. Still, they usually correspond to which heists you have been playing the most frequently.

Heist boosts occur when you play a mission that you have ignored for an extended period. Once you have played a heist too much in a short period, a penalty gets applied to the task. This boost/penalty assignment is the Heat system. Gaming the 'heat' system to your advantage by mixing up heists helps you avoid penalties and rake in bonuses.

Play Quick Heists

There are a certain amount of risk vs. reward options in Payday 2. For instance, is it worth playing that extended, more challenging mission to rake in more points? Sometimes it can be. For example, banking a stealth bonus in a shorter mission and carrying that over to a multi-day heist like Framing Frame can bank some significant XP.

However, sometimes the best strategy is taking in the short quick wins and building them up. Playing short heists can save you the grief of playing through an arduous job while conserving your resources and time. Some examples include Diamond Store (Normal), Hardware Expert (Basic), and Four Stores.

Secure Bags

Loot bags are the primary source of income in Payday 2, and the more bags you acquire, the more money you make. Bags get classified by weight. Furthermore, as the bag gets heavier, your character loses physical abilities that limit movement.

However, if you can manage the risk, the reward is often worth it. Securing as many loot bags as possible raises the XP you gain after completing the heist.

Raise Your Infamy Level

Payday 2 introduced the infamy system as a way to extend replayability. Once a player meets the requirements, they can choose to raise their infamy at the expense of their reputation level, skill set, and spending money. However, the perks of raising infamy can make up for it.

The infamy system has changed plenty since its inception. Initially, raising infamy gave players skill points they could spend towards player rewards and boosts. The next infamy update changed the interface to a grid.

Presently, the infamy system is linear, with set boosts and bonuses at each tier. Each tier gives the player an experience requirement reduction. This boost comes up as an infamy bonus on a payday.

In sum, sacrificing your leveling progress early on may be worth it for the experience boosts provided by raising your infamy.

How To Get XP Fast

We talked about how you can make your grinding more productive, but what about those quick XP fixes? Certain heists in Payday 2 may not pay out the most experience.

Still, they will give you quick and easy XP payouts, which is just as valuable. Here are some heists that will provide you fast XP.

Four Stores

Players consider Four Stores one of the easiest heists to clear. Furthermore, it offers a stealth bonus that you can carry over to another mission. There are certain things you can do to ensure success. When playing the heist on 'Overkill' difficulty, the best way to accomplish a quick run is to bring an ECM jammer, break the ATM, and get out as quickly as possible.

Election Day

If you are looking for an even higher stealth bonus, play Election Day, which offers a 20% bonus upon a stealthy completion. Here's a tip that will heighten your efficiency: four of the trucks you search on the heist's first day are copies. Therefore, you will still have a fifty percent chance of tagging the right truck if you ignore them. Furthermore, the second day does not require any bag carrying.

Golden Grin Casino

Speaking of heists that do not require bag carrying, another option is Golden Grin Casino. Yes, there is one required bag to carry on this mission. However, you can skip the loot bags in the basement since they do not give you any XP. As long as you focus on getting the dentist's bag, you will get that quick XP you seek.

Hoxton Breakout

Hoxton Breakout, a two-day heist, is one of the most straightforward missions you can play. You only carry one loot bag, which is the server, and the rest of the tasks leading up to that loot grab are linear and relatively simple.

Safe House Raid

I recommend playing Safe House Raid every time the heist pops up on the menu. While the mission does not offer a significant payout money-wise, you will gain a heaping helping of XP as well as six continental coins upon completion. If you are starting a new campaign, continental coins are highly elusive, so any chance to farm them is worth taking.


The most notorious XP farming heist known amongst the Payday community is 'Cook-Off.' In this mission, you and your crew are responsible for cooking and securing meth. The amount of meth you can gather in this mission is practically limitless. It is possible to attain up to 1,200 bags of meth, theoretically speaking.

At $325k a bag on Normal difficulty alone, you can make a lot of money playing Cook-Off. However, relying solely on this heist can lead to penalties.

Final Thoughts

In short, building your XP in Payday 2 can become less challenging when you know how to game the system. One strategy you can use is finding the best bonuses and skill boosts to level grind as effectively as possible. Another point of attack is targeting the heists that payout the most XP with the least amount of effort. Lastly, it is essential to stay up to date with patches. If you don't know the latest updates' effects, you'll waste time on tricks that no longer work.

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