How To Edit A PDF Without Adobe Acrobat?

PDF files are used extensively, and Acrobat Pro from Adobe is widely regarded as the best software for editing PDF files. It has all the features required for editing, like inserting images, adding text, and updating tables. Yet, learning to use the software is time-consuming, and many consider it expensive since Adobe charges the user $179 annually or $14.99 for a monthly subscription. Many people would like to find out How To Edit A PDF Without Adobe Acrobat, and some of the free options and inexpensive paid options are discussed below.

How To Edit A PDF Without Adobe Acrobat?

To edit a PDF without Adobe Acrobat, you can use free online editing tools without installation, such as PDFBuddy, PDFescape, Sejda, or even Google Docs. However, if you need professional editing for a large number of PDF files, you can use standalone PDf editing software that is much cheaper than Adobe Acrobat, such as PDFelement for Windows or PDFpen for Mac.

Online editing of PDF files

If the files do not have any confidential information, if they’re only a few PDF files that have to be modified, persons who want to modify the PDF file quickly can use a suitable PDF editor online. The user has to upload the PDF file at the website provided, after which the required changes can be made in the file. Some of the online services are:

  • PDFBuddyOpens in a new tab.– Free tool for editing up to 3 PDF files monthly. Registration is required to save the changes.
  • PDFescapeOpens in a new tab. – user can annotate, edit, or password protect PDF files. Users can fill existing forms or create one or more new forms. Free use for files of size up to 10 MB size, 100 PDF pages.Pdf – the user does not have to register for securing, converting, or editing PDF files. Only 3 PDFs allowed monthly free.
  • SejdaOpens in a new tab. – editing text, filling and signing PDF files. Free usage limited to 3 PDFs per month, maximize file size 50 MB or two hundred pages.

Preview App for Mac PDF editing

Every Mac has the Preview app for opening PDF photos in the Mac, allowing the user to edit the PDF. In the tools panel of the app, there are options to underline, highlight text, annotate text, delete or add pages, compress, fill forms, sign, and password-protect the PDF. It is similar to Adobe Acrobat in features, so the user can modify the PDF without downloading other apps.

Google Docs PDF editor

Many people use Google DocsOpens in a new tab. to create documents and worksheets and use it to make a PDF file editable. The PDF should be uploaded to Google Docs, and then the text can be edited. The images may be lost. After the editing is complete, the edited file can be converted to PDF format and downloaded.

MS word for windows users

Users of a Windows laptop or computer can use Microsoft Office word software for editing PDF files. Any PDF file opened using MS word is automatically converted into an editable word document. The user can edit the images as well as the text in the file like a word document. After the editing is complete, the file can be saved in PDF format. There are several videos and other tutorials available online, explaining all this in great detail.

Using inexpensive editing software for PDF files.

Use Standalone PDF Editing Software (Cheaper Than Acrobat)

Small business owners, professionals, and other individuals who cannot afford Adobe Acrobat can consider purchasing cheaper software, which has the most features. The buyer has to pay the one-time purchase price for this software, which varies from approximately $50-$150. They also have a well-designed user interface. Some better PDF editors are discussed below.

PDFelementOpens in a new tab. is compatible with iOS, macOS, and Windows has almost all Adobe Acrobat features, and is affordably priced. It is recommended for those who wish to make PDF forms that are fillable. The user can edit text/links/images, add forms, combine, convert and organize the PDF files. Paid features include optical character recognition (OCR) for making scanned files editable and searchable, watermarking, encryption. In addition to the perpetual license, subscription plans are also offered.

PDFpenOpens in a new tab. for macOS, iOS users allows the user to edit PDF files easily. In addition to allowing quick editing of text and images, the user can draw, add, delete pages, annotate, password protect, and have OCR features. It has better features compared to the Preview app for editing and an excellent user interface. The basic version is priced at $74.95; the Pro version costs $128.95


Though PDF is preferred to other file formats, it is not easy to alter PDF files, especially password-protected files. Adobe Acrobat can edit PDF files on mobile, Mac, PC, but it is expensive. Hence users should consider the more affordable options listed above.

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