Reader Question: remove Suica • PASMO from Apple Pay Wallet but not lose them

A reader question:

What’s the process if I want to remove Suica card from Apple Pay Wallet but not lose the card? I plan to sell my phone but have a commuter pass that’s still valid.

This one is super easy. Go to Wallet, tap Suica•PASMO, tap “˙˙˙” in the upper right corner, scroll to the bottom of the Suica card options, tap “Remove This Card”.

Poof, the card is gone from Wallet, but don’t worry.

This is where the fun begins. Suica and PASMO are automatically migrated from Wallet and stored on the Apple Pay iCloud & Mobile Suica / Mobile PASMO systems where they is safe and ready to be re-added to the same iPhone, a new iPhone or Apple Watch logged in with the same Apple ID at any time with the Balance and Commute Plan intact.

The user does not need a Mobile Suica or Mobile PASMO account to do this. For example, if you add a plastic Commuter Suica card to Apple Pay and remove it from Wallet, simply add it back when you need it. It all works seamlessly because of an arrangement between Apple and JR East / PASMO Association that links Apple Pay and Suica•PASMO together in a special way.

If you take the time to install Suica App or PASMO App and look at your card info, you see something like this:

Let’s say you add a 2nd plastic Suica card to Apple Pay. Look at the Suica App info for the 2nd card and you’ll see something like this:

What’s happening on the system level is that even though you do not have a Mobile Suica account, Apple Pay automatically registers your Apple ID on Mobile Suica Cloud the first time you add Suica card to Wallet, so that you never lose it. If you add a 2nd card it is also registered as Apple ID_1, a 3rd card as Apple ID_2, etc. Each and every Suica card is safe and secure no matter how many times you remove it from Wallet. The important thing to remember is that removing Suica or PASMO from Wallet never deletes the from Apple Pay iCloud or Mobile Suica/Mobile PASMO.

This is the reason why Apple Pay Suica•PASMO cards cannot be migrated to Android Osaifu Keitai or Google Pay. Migrators leaving iPhone for good need to delete all of their Apple Pay Suica•PASMO cards and get a refund in Suica App or PASMO App. This is the only way to completely delete the card from Apple Pay iCloud and Mobile Suica/Mobile PASMO.