Why Does Apple Pay Say Pending and What to Do

The most common reason Apple Pay says payment pending is that the recipient of the money you sent has yet to accept it. When they accept it, the pending status will disappear. The recipient might need to set up Apple Cash if they haven’t done so yet.

This post will explore why Apple Pay says pending or payment pending when you attempt to send funds through Apple Cash. I’ll explain why this happens and what you can do to help the payment go through and not be pending any longer. 

Let’s dive in. 

Key Takeaways

  • Apple Pay will say “pending” when the recipient of funds you try to send through Apple Cash has yet to accept the funds. 
  • When a recipient accepts the funds you send, the pending message should disappear. 
  • You might also see this message if there are issues with your Apple Pay app, such as a glitch or outdated software. 
  • A recipient of funds through Apple Pay needs to set up an Apple Cash account to accept the money and get rid of the pending status on the sender’s end.  

Why Does Apple Pay Say Pending?

Apple Pay makes it very easy to send and receive funds as long as you send money to people who have an Apple Cash account. You can send money to almost anyone with a few taps on your iPhone. 

But sometimes, you might try to send money through the payment app and see a “pending” or “payment pending” message. This is nothing to worry about and typically just means that the recipient of the funds hasn’t accepted the money yet. 

Whenever you send money through Apple Pay, the transaction needs to be confirmed by both the sender and the recipient. When you are the one sending the money, you make the confirmation during the sending process. 

After doing this, the person on the other end of the transaction also needs to accept the money. You’ll see a “pending” status until they do this, and the payment won’t be completed until the recipient accepts it. 

This “pending” message is almost always caused by the reason I just mentioned – waiting for a recipient to accept it. But there is a chance you might see it for a few other reasons. 

A random bug or glitch with your iPhone might cause a “pending” message, as can software issues when you are running an outdated version of iOS. Both of these issues are easy to fix, and I’ll address them in the section below. 

What to Do When Apple Pay Says Pending? 

The most common way to get rid of the “pending” message when sending money through Apple Pay and Apple Cash is to have the recipient of the funds accept the payment. 

Whenever someone receives a payment through Apple Pay, they’ll get a notification of the transaction and have the option to accept or ignore the payment. Once they tap accept, the payment will go through, and the pending issue will be resolved. 

If the recipient of the funds is new to using Apple Pay and Apple Cash, they will need to set up their accounts associated with the App before receiving any funds. This is a simple process, but everyone must do it to use the app. 

The Apple Pay app should walk you through all the steps to get set up with an account, which is very easy to do. You’ll be asked to verify your identity and provide some personal information, like a bank account, for the funds to go into. 

Once all of that is set up, you’ll be an active Apple Pay user, and you can receive and send payments quickly and easily. 

If you are already an active Apple Pay user and are running into “pending” messages even when you try to accept a payment, you might have a bug or software issue going on. 

If this is the case, the best first step is to restart your iPhone. This often fixes random bugs and glitches and can resolve the issue of a pending status that you can’t figure out. Just turn your iPhone off and back on and attempt to accept the payment again. 

You should also ensure you have the most recent iOS installed on your iPhone. If you are running an outdated version, this also might cause issues with sending and receiving money, such as the pending message. 

You can update the software on your iPhone from the Settings app. It can take a while to download and install completely, and you need to be connected to WiFi and have your phone plugged into a power source. 

Why Does Apple Pay Say Pending when Receiving Money?

If you are on the receiving end of an Apple Pay or Apple Cash transaction and see the “pending” message, you just need to accept the payment for it to be complete. You’ll see this message until you accept it. 

Again, if you are new to using Apple Pay or Apple Cash, you need to set up an account. Follow the prompts from the Apple Pay or Wallet app on your iPhone to make this happen. It typically only takes a few minutes. 

How to Accept Pending Apple Pay

Accepting pending money with Apple Pay is very simple. You should see a notification whenever someone sends you funds through Apple Pay or Apple Cash. Just tap “Accept” in this message, and you’ll receive the funds. 

You need to set up an Apple Pay or Apple Cash account to make this happen. You’ll likely see a pending status or message with the payment notification until you set up this account. You can set it up through the Wallet app. 

You can also set up your Wallet to accept payments automatically, which can help you avoid the “pending” status altogether if you don’t want to deal with it. Tap the Wallet app on your iPhone to get started with this. 

Once you open the Wallet app, tap on the Apple Cash card. Then tap the More button, which looks like three dots on the upper-right-hand part of the screen. You should see an option to “Automatically Accept Payments.” 

Manually accepting payments can be a good security measure that can help prevent some types of fraud or receiving cash from senders you don’t know. Keep that in mind before selecting the Automatically Accept Payments option in Apple Pay. 

How Long Does Apple Pay Stay Pending? 

An Apple Pay or Apple Cash payment will stay pending until the recipient of the funds accepts the payment. This can take a few seconds, days, or longer, depending on when the person sees the payment and accepts it. 

If you send money through Apple Pay to someone you know and see a “pending” message for an extended period, you might want to contact them directly to see what is happening. They may have missed the message. 

When the person does accept the payment, the pending message will disappear. You don’t need to take any other actions for the payment to go through, as the transaction will be complete. 

How to Cancel Pending Apple Pay

While an Apple Pay transaction is pending, you’ll have the option to cancel it. As the sender of the money, you can cancel the payment directly through your Wallet app up until it is received and accepted. 

You can simply tap Cancel Payment in your transaction history on the Apple Cash card in the Wallet app. You might need to scroll through your recent transaction to find the payment you want to cancel. 

Once someone accepts the payment, you can no longer cancel it. Keep this in mind whenever you are sending money to someone you don’t know. Always check that your payment is to the correct recipient before clicking send. 

Final Thoughts

Whenever you see a “pending” message while using Apple Pay, it most likely means that the recipient of the funds hasn’t accepted the payment yet. When they accept it, this message will go away, and the transaction will be completed. 

Remember that anyone who wants to use Apple Pay and Apple Cash needs to set up an account before they can receive or send money. A payment pending message won’t go away until this account is set up. 

Have you ever seen a “pending” message when using Apple Pay? How long did it take to go away? Let me know in the comments below. 

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  • Yrah Angelica Patoc

    Since yesterday it’s say that pending I was shock cause every time I use Apple Pay / Apple Cash it’s automatic I received the payment but now it’s say That restricted or locked how to get the payment?

    • Jerry Romero

      Hi Yrah,

      Your transaction might be pending because the recipient of your funds has yet to accept them. You’ll see a pending message until this happens. If you send money to someone you know, you can contact them to see if they received a notification. If you are seeing a pending message for funds you were given, you might need to reach out to Apple Customer Service or your bank for more information.

  • Dian Eddleman

    My Apple Pay I sent says pending and has been taken out of my account but nothing shows up on his end. Should I cancel and re-do the entry?

    • Jerry Romero

      Hi Dian,

      If the recipient doesn’t see the payment and it still says pending, you might need to wait a few minutes or hours for the transaction to go through. If it’s already out of your account and the recipient doesn’t see it after waiting, I would cancel and resend. But make sure the money doesn’t get pulled out twice from your account. You might need to contact Apple customer service for more assistance if that doesn’t work. Hope that helps.

  • Rose

    I have a pending transaction in my wallet for a payment I made to Tim Horton’s and asking me to pay with Passcode/scan reader. The payment has been charged to my Credit Card, which means Tim Horton’s got it, but I can’t figure out any way to get this trx off my app. and not sure if I’ll be able to use for a different trx while this still shows. Thoughts?

    • Jerry Romero

      Hi Rose,

      Try to close out of the Wallet app completely or restart your iPhone to see if that clears the transaction. It might just be a residual type of thing, and I doubt it will affect your ability to use Apple Pay for more transactions. You can try another transaction to find out for sure, but it sounds like a simple thing going on and not a big issue. If the vendor received your payment and the amount was pulled from the account associated with your card, everything should be all set. If none of that works, you might need to update the app or your iOS. Keep me posted on how things go, and I hope this helps!

      • Dian Eddleman

        We both have done a restart. My updates are current