How App Store and iTunes Store purchases are billed

When you buy something with your Apple ID, your payment method will be charged either at the time of purchase or within a few days.

How purchases are grouped

Some purchases might be grouped together onto a single charge, so if you don't recognize a charge, check your purchase history. You can also look for the receipts in the email account that's associated with your Apple ID.

Single item

Purchase History on iPhone showing a single subscription that was purchased.

Some purchases and subscriptions are billed individually.

Grouped items

Purchase History on iPhone showing several purchases on one bill, including a movie, some songs, and some apps.

Purchases that you make in the App Store, iTunes Store, or through other Apple services might be grouped together on one bill.


Which payment method is charged

This is the order in which Apple attempts to charge your payment methods:

  1. If you have an Apple ID balance, Apple attempts to use your Apple ID balance to cover the full amount of the bill.
  2. If you don't have an Apple ID balance or you don't have enough balance to cover the full amount of the bill, Apple attempts to charge your primary payment method. Your primary payment method is the payment method that's listed at the top of your Manage Payments page.
  3. If there's a problem with the primary payment method, or if the primary payment method can't be charged for the full remaining amount, Apple attempts to charge your other payment methods in order from top to bottom. When there is a problem with a payment method, you might see red text next to it on the Manage Payments page.

An iPhone showing multiple payment methods, one of which has an error, and an iPhone showing Purchase History with a purchase that was billed to both Apple ID balance and one of the payment methods on file. The primary payment method could not be billed, so the remainder after the Apple ID balance was charged was billed to the second payment method in the list.

If a purchase fails to charge to all of the payment methods that you have on file, a negative balance is applied to your Apple ID. You won't be able to make any new purchases or update your apps until you update your payment methods. After you update your payment methods, the negative balance charges immediately to your updated primary payment method.

If you change your primary payment method, purchases that you haven't paid for will be charged to the payment method that was your primary when you authorized them.

More about charges to Apple ID balance

Subscriptions might not be charged to your Apple ID. And in the following situations, your Apple ID balance won't be charged:

  • When a family member in a Family Sharing group makes a purchase, their personal Apple ID balance is charged. If there isn't enough balance to cover the purchase, the remainder is charged to the primary payment method on the family organizer's Apple ID.
  • If you gift money, an app, or other items with your Apple ID, any Apple ID balance that you have will be skipped, and the purchase charges to your primary payment method.


Get more help with billing

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