Guide: CS:GO Trade Up Contracts


Sacrifice ten skins and get one cooler back. Sounds profitable? Yes! This is exactly how trade up contracts work in Counter-Strike: Global Offensive. CS.MONEY Blog describes how good they are and if it is possible to make money on trade-up contracts in CS:GO.

Need skins to complete Trade Ups? Just come to CS.MONEY and set up the filters. We’re the easiest way to buy skins!

How Trade Up Contracts Work: Mechanics

Contracts work as follows: pick ten skins of the same type and rarity, press the button and receive one skin of a higher rarity (one grade better). So out of ten Classified skins, you can get one Covert skin. But as always, it has a couple of nuances: you can’t throw in ten R8 Revolver Skull Crushers (two bucks each) and get back M4A1-S Printstream (four hundred bucks).

Important: a contract-made skin will always belong to one of the collections of the skins you applied to the contract. In the example above, ten R8 Revolver Skull Crusher from The Prisma collection can turn into one M4A4 The Emperor or Five-SeveN Angry Mob and nothing more. If you mix skins from different collections in one contract, you will have a chance to get one or another skin corresponding to the mixture of collections put in.

Too complex? Watch our hands. Instead of ten R8 Revolver Skull Crushers, we pick five Skull Crushers and five MP9 Airlock from Gamma 2 Collection for a Trade Up Contract. So, you will get one of the following four skins with equal chances: M4A4 The Emperor & Five-SeveN Angry Mob from The Prisma Collection or AK-47 Neon Revolution & FAMAS Roll Cage from Gamma 2 Collection. 

That is, possible outcomes of each contract can be pre-calculated because only you decide which skins to put into it.

CS:GO Trade Up Contract Restrictions

Trade Up Contracts in CS:GO have two significant limitations. 

  • First, you can’t mix normal skins and Stattrak skins. All ten entry skins must be either without or with a kill counter. 
  • Second, contracts can only create weapon skins. You can’t take ten MP7 Bloodsport for three bucks each, throw them into a contract and get a knife or gloves—only weapon finishes.

But actually, there’s another restriction: crafting skins from different collections. Skins that do not have upper-rarity skins in their collections cannot be used for a contract. So, P250 Franklin is the rarest from The Bank Collection; therefore, it cannot be used to craft other skins.

P250 Franklin

What affects float in Trade Up Contracts? 

If you were ever interested in AWP Dragon Lore, you might know that the rarest and the lowest float it has is… pretty odd. Exactly, AWP Dragon Lore’s lowest float is 0.00001337420690. It’s like someone just opened a jar of the internet’s best memes and spilt the insides on a weapon finish. But here’s a thing: it’s not just a coincidence. OGSwagster69, the original creator of this skin, the person who crafted it, to be precise, knew what he was doing and how a crafted skin’s float is calculated. He specially selected the skins for the contract to form this float. 

Fortunately, trade up contracts float is not some sort of a secret knowledge. It is calculated using this formula:

average float of skins in the contract * possible range of float of the resulting skin + minimum float of the resulting skin = trade up contract skin float

Examples make it simple. Let us explain. Take five P2000 Amber Fade and five P250 Splash. We are very lucky because all five P2000s have a float of 0.13, and all P250s have a float of 0.11. Therefore, it is elementary to determine the average float of these skins: five skins with 0.13 and five skins with 0.11 divided by 10. (5*0.11+5*0.13)/10 = 0.12. This is our average float.

Now let’s determine the possible float range of the skin we want. In our case, it’s AWP BOOM, and its float ranges from 0.06 to 0.28. Subtract big from small: 0.28 minus 0.06 brings us 0.22. So, we have all three variables: average float, possible range, and the trade-up’s minimum float. Use them in the formula to get:

0,12*0,22+0,06 = 0,0864

Thus, a trade up contract with the above skins will bring us AWP BOOM with a float of 0.0864.

Profitable CS:GO Trade Up Contracts

Long story short, most trade up contracts in CS:GO will not be profitable. Still, a couple of them will allow you to benefit from such an operation. Unfortunately, we can’t provide examples of profitable contracts here due to constantly changing skin prices. Those contracts that bring money today may go negative in a week.

In addition, almost all Collections have several skins of maximum rarity, which means that single contracts are more like a roulette. Feeling lucky? Fortune can bring an M4A4 bringing $20 of profit. But if luck turns, it’s Glock-18 and a total of $30 in losses. To reduce such impacts, you need to make dozens of contracts.

Five Tips on How To Profit From Trade Up Contracts

profitable trade up contracts guide and skins

Tip #1: Study the Market

The first and most crucial step is to study skins prices on the Steam Marketplace or among skin-selling platforms. Then, you need to find the right ones. Most contracts are not very profitable, but by choosing the right float and suitable skins, you can benefit from a Trade Up contract. But, well, to be more precise, you might benefit.

Tip #2: Quantity over quality

No Trade Up contract gives a guaranteed result. Let’s say you want an anime CS:GO skin for your M4A4 from the recent Revolution Case, M4A4 Temukau. Here, you need 5 FT UMP-45 Wild Child and five more 5 MW Classified skins. This way, you might get one of the four-five options. Besides M4A4 Temukau and AK-47 Head Shot from Revolution Case, you can get two-three skins from other collections.

Moreover, profitable are only M4A4 Temukau and AK-47 Head Shot. That is, if you make one contract, it’s 50/50: you will either profit or lose money. But if there are 20, 50 or even 100 such contracts, the chances of profiting are very high. Why? Because your average benefits from such contracts, with a correct selection of skins, could be $10 or even higher. Therefore, when trading up for contracts, always remember that the more, the better.

Tip #3: Patience

Even though Trade Up contracts might seem completely random, it’s not true. You can have a predictable result. Therefore, in order to execute a proper contract and get what you want, follow the float of the skins you invest. But it’s one hell of a job: collecting skins with the right float can be a lengthy task. Therefore, if you decide to engage in contracts, it is better to be patient and not rush things. The cheaper you get skins for your contract, the more profitable it will be.

Tip #4: Take advantage of market opportunities

Skins prices are constantly changing. Still, it’s not complete chaos: as with any market and investments, the CS:GO skins market has predictable decrease or increase points. For example, prices for popular skins are reduced during Steam Sales or when Valve release new operations for CS:GO. At this time, players are trying to get rid of old skins in order to buy something new. More skins on sale lead to a supply increase, and the higher the supply with the same demand, the lower the price.

Surely, you can snatch opportunities with events here at CS.MONEY. We regularly hold events where you can buy skins with profit, including trading. Subscribe to our socials, Twitter, for example, so as not to miss such opportunities.

Tips Five: Calculate Different Options

Finally, consider different options for Trade Up contracts. Maximizing the chances of getting the most expensive skin is not always the best strategy. Perhaps, it could be better to change what you dump into the contract so that the most expensive skin has a lesser chance of dropping, but the contract itself will be much cheaper. At a distance, such a combo will be more profitable than racing for a chance to get a $100 skin. Therefore, when investing in a contract, calculate different combinations of skins in search of the most profitable one.

Contracts in CS:GO are an excellent way to get rid of skins you don’t need. Also, they are suitable for those who want to make money on skins. Finding successful contracts is not the easiest thing to do, but it pays off with a relatively predictable result. Still, you can always sell your skins in our new section, CS.MONEY Market. It has a low fee, you can withdraw cash easily, and there are no trading bots!


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