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Not everyone wants to have their credit card or debit card linked to their Apple ID. Some people are afraid of having their financial information tied to online merchants and digital content stores because of the unfortunate reality of identity theft and unauthorized purchases.

With that in mind, what should you do if you don’t want a credit card that you’ve already linked to your Apple ID to be there, but the ‘None’ payment method option isn’t showing for you?

We’ll talk about that in this post and explain why the option isn’t available to you.

It is 100% possible to set up an Apple ID without a payment method. My colleague Sebastien talked about how to do that in a tutorial published last year, but there is still a considerable niche of people who have been having trouble removing their payment information after they’ve already added it.

Normally, you would just select “None” as a payment method and use iTunes Store gift cards to purchase content or stick to free downloads, but there are some rarer situations where the “None” option won’t be available.

Unable to remove a payment method from your Apple ID?

There are a number of reasons why Apple might be preventing you from removing your payment information from your Apple ID. Apple says that one the following reasons are likely the cause:

You may owe Apple money

If you owe a balance on something you’ve purchased from the App Store or iTunes Store, but Apple has been unable to charge you for it, then Apple may not allow you to remove a payment method from your Apple ID until that balance is paid off.

This might happen if your linked credit card was shut down, or suspended before Apple had a chance to bill you, and as a result, Apple hasn’t gotten their money yet and is patiently waiting to collect their toll.

Once the balance is paid off, you can go into your Apple ID settings and easily select the “None” option for a payment method, which effectively removes your credit card from Apple’s online system.

Are you subscribed to an auto-renewal service?

If you are subscribed to a service that is set to automatically renew every so often, then Apple will not allow you to remove your payment information because doing so would mean you wouldn’t have a way to pay for your automatic renewal.

Among the things that you may have automatic renewal enabled for are:

  • Apple Music
  • Magazine subscriptions
  • Newspaper subscriptions
  • And more

Once you disable automatic renewal for any of these services that you may be subscribed to, you can easily set your Apple ID payment information to “None.”

Keep in mind that if you cancel your renewal within 8 hours before the renewal is scheduled to renew, then you may still be charged one more time before it cancels.

Do you use Family Sharing?

If you’re utilizing Family Sharing on your Apple ID, then you will be required to carry the burden of having a payment method associated with your Apple ID and will be unable to remove it.

This payment method is used by all Family Sharing members at the discretion of the account organizer. There is no way to retract the payment method without first disabling Family Sharing.

Did you move to a new country or region lately?

If you’ve moved out of your home country or region, and are trying to use a valid Apple ID that you set up on another country or region, then you will need to associate a new payment method with that Apple ID at least once.

You will always have the option to go back and remove it later on by selecting “None” from the payment options list in your Apple ID settings from a computer.

Has your Apple ID ever downloaded from the App Store before?

If you managed to make an Apple ID without a credit card, then kudos to you! But Apple may require you to provide a payment method the first time you attempt to download an app or a song from one of its digital content stores.

Of course, you can always remove it later on from your Apple ID settings.

Wrapping up

This information applies to Apple ID users who are using the App Store, Mac App Store, iTunes Store, iBooks Store, or any of Apple’s digital content stores that use your Apple ID to make purchases or keep a running history of your downloads.

Keep in mind that it’s typically a good idea to keep a credit card on file just in case you want to make a purchase some day, but we do understand that some people are deathly afraid of managing finances online for security reasons, so if you’re one of these people, then more power to you.

Also read:

Did this piece answer your question as to why you couldn’t select “None” as a payment method for your Apple ID? Share in the comments!

  • Daniel Amir

    I was on the US Store then i changed it to the Egyptian Store so i would be able to enter my visa credentials to buy an app,(because on the US Store it didn’t accept my credentials because this is an egyptian credit card) but after i bought it i wanted to go back to the US Store, but i can’t because i don’t have a NONE option so i tried entering my visa credentials(Egyptian) it keeps telling me my Credit Card was declined, so i can’t change to the US Store anytmore. and i made sure that i don’t owe Apple money and i’m not on family sharing or anything.
    So…can anyone help?

    • Chloe Elizabeth Wade

      Ik if u set it with none up by downloading an app u can put none but after the fact u can try this Tap Settings > iTunes & App Store.
      Tap your Apple ID, then tap View Apple ID. You might need to sign in.
      iOS iTunes and App Store Settings
      Tap Payment Information. If you’re using Family Sharing, only your family organizer can update the payment information.
      Change or remove your information. To remove your payment method, select None. Get help if you don’t see None or can’t select it.

      Tap Done.

    • Chloe Elizabeth Wade

      I don’t know if it works personally coz I don’t have a card linked coz I don’t need to I just gift cards to pay my $4.99/month apple music (I’m a student) if I needed to link a card for apple music I would coz I love my apple music

      • Chloe Elizabeth Wade

        Well technically I haven’t paid anything for it yet coz I still have free trial till 08/11 coz I only signed up earlier this month

    • Chloe Elizabeth Wade

      Obvs I get other stuff as well but I’ve bought most stuff I want now

  • Chloe Elizabeth Wade

    I just get gift cards never had a card on my account I would probably get one if I needed to for apple music but I don’t

  • Barry Marshall

    When I first got my Apple ID it was frustrating to say the least, but I have never given Apple a credit card #, probably because I don’t have one. Only use the cards since if I can’t afford it then I don’t buy it.

  • Hussain Alsanona

    And why I can’t add another one ?

    • TJ

      I always wondered that too, I think its stupid, Apple aways does stuff that makes no sense.

  • Colin Steiger

    I’m the organizer in my family, subscribed to over 10 things, and honestly I can’t even imagine why I would ever want to remove my payment method from my Itunes account.

    • Debbie33499

      Then why are you replying here? Because you do NOT want to remove your payment method? Senseless.

  • Nathan Anderson

    I don’t owe Apple money, I don’t subscribe to anything that has a fee, I haven’t changed the country i live in, i have used my apple ID hundreds of times to download from the app store, I am not using family sharing. None of the possible reasons why a ‘none’ option is not given apply to me. NONE! But still, there is no ‘none’ option. I added a debit card (prepaid Amex serve card) last week to use the last dollar on it for a 0.99 cents in app purchase. Now the card has a zero balance & I have already cut it up and thrown it away. It will not accept the card info, pressumably because there is a zero balance. I do not own another card account. And I cannot remove this destroyed cards info or select a ‘none’ option. I need to update my apps, the only apps i have are free apps. What can i do? Short of getting another prepaid card and adding its info. This is crazy! What is Apple trying to force?

    • Alisha Wilton

      I’m having the same problem did you event figure it out?

    • Devan Shaw

      yes im having this same issue , all i want to do is download a free app and it wont let me, i dont owe nun, no subs, no family sharing either

    • Rabah Al Ali

      same problem !!!
      disgusting tbh …

  • Debbie33499

    > Has your Apple ID ever downloaded from the App Store before?

    Years ago, yes. Why would that have ANYTHING to do with the topic of the article “can’t remove payment methods”????

  • Kathy Cook

    I’m calling the Apple store

  • Isabella Bradshaw

    i used a a walmart prepaid gift card twice, i used up the money now i cant pick none because i had cards on my account. i have had to change my apple id twice because of this crap!! help! no i dont have any of the reasons stated about in the page, only this reason. wtf!

  • sizzlin7gal

    I still have this problem. No money is owed. No subscriptions. Nothing. None does not appear as an option! This is really sad. This problem needs fixed!