I'd like to switch the payment method of my iCloud+ and Apple Music subscription to Apple Pay. It is currently PayPal. I was under the impression that adding Apple Pay to the top of my list with payment methods would make it switch automatically the next billing. But that doesn't seem to be the case. I also cannot remove the PayPal method: "Unable to Remove. There is an active subscription on this account that requires at least one payment on file."

Do I have to cancel the subscriptions first?

  • You shouldn't have to cancel the subscription. I would recommend contacting Apple Support as this may be an issue with your account that they would be better equipped to resolve.
    – Ezekiel
    Oct 6, 2021 at 16:20

2 Answers 2


I contacted Apple Support, and it turns out I had to add my credit card separately under Settings > [Name] > Payment & Shipping. I was then also able to remove PayPal.

I assumed this wasn't necessary since the credit card was already added in Apple Pay (the Wallet app). Though this worked for App Store purchases, it apparently does not work for subscriptions.

Out of curiosity: does anyone actually have a subscription via Apple Pay itself?

  • Thx for the update! Have you now removed Apple Pay altogether or is it listed among the payment methods associated with your Apple ID along with the credit card? Have you now been able to remove PayPal? Apple needs to correct this Apple Support page (support.apple.com/en-us/HT202631) which says Apple Pay is an acceptable payment method to be associated with an Apple ID and no type of purchase seems to be listed as an exception.
    – Alper
    Oct 6, 2021 at 20:50
  • Yes, I was able to remove PayPal. I didn't remove Apple Pay because I think it's still used by the App Store. In any case, it can't hurt to have it at the top. But the distinction between App Store purchases (credit card via Apple Pay) and subscriptions (credit card directly) is what makes it confusing. Indeed, I haven't seen this distinction documented anywhere.
    – Daan
    Oct 6, 2021 at 21:12
  • The payment method I see in the App Store invoice is "MasterCard ... (Apple Pay)". So I'm curious to see if the iCloud+/Apple Music invoice will have the "Apple Pay" omitted.
    – Daan
    Oct 6, 2021 at 21:22

You don’t need to remove an existing payment method or cancel any existing subscription to make a new payment method the default.

On your iPhone, get into Settings -> (your name) -> Payment & Shipping and tap Edit. Than move the order icon (three parallel bars) for your preferred payment method to the top.

You can find more information on adding or removing payment methods through various Apple devices on this Apple support page.

  • I have Apple Pay at the top in my payment methods. But with the last billing, neither subscription switched to it.
    – Daan
    Oct 6, 2021 at 16:26
  • Do you have any paid subscriptions associated with your Apple ID in addition to iCloud+ and Apple Music? Has your Apple Pay account been charged for any of them after the change to your default payment method?
    – Alper
    Oct 6, 2021 at 16:36
  • Yes, but they're all yearly subscriptions that only bill next year. Apple Pay hasn't worked for any subscriptions; just for App Store purchases.
    – Daan
    Oct 6, 2021 at 16:43
  • When did you get Apple Pay? Have you successfully made any payments through it recently?
    – Alper
    Oct 6, 2021 at 16:45
  • I got Apple Pay a few years ago. I purchased an app via Apple Pay a few days ago. I do Apple Pay purchases via Safari on the Mac all the time.
    – Daan
    Oct 6, 2021 at 16:52

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