I am wondering which version is correct or more popular:

to pay by credit card


to pay with credit card.

Please, tell me which I should choose. Are both of them correct? I will be very grateful for your help. Thank you in advance.

  • 2
    I think the second would be more natural with a possessive - Can I pay with my credit card?, but apart from that both are acceptable. Dec 22, 2021 at 10:05
  • 2
    You normally pay by credit card without a determiner, but you pay with a / with your credit card (both a and your are "determiners"). Dec 22, 2021 at 12:58
  • @KateBunting: That of course is an important change to the question. We accept credit cards, but yours is expired
    – Ben Voigt
    Dec 22, 2021 at 19:46

1 Answer 1


From my experience,

to pay by credit card

refers to the method of payment in a more abstract way. Here, you're talking about the abstract idea of paying with a credit card, not so much about paying with any specific credit card.

On the other hand

to pay with a credit card

refers more to the concrete, realized payment process with a specific credit card. I would use a determiner in this case, like an article

He paid with a credit card.
He paid with the credit card his bank issued to him last week.

or a possessive

He paid with his credit card.

  • Thank you for the answer! Then, for example, should we say "pay by phone" or "pay by PayPal" (as the method of payment) vs "pay with my phone's wallet app", or "pay with my PayPal account"?
    – mirkhosro
    Jan 1, 2022 at 18:45
  • @mirkhosro Basically, yes. Jan 1, 2022 at 19:59

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