Some people who have an Apple ID will never use it to purchase anything — sticking instead to the free apps on the service. If this is the case, why do you always have to add a credit card just to set up an account? It's not easy, but a workaround does exist to create an Apple ID without entering your credit card.
If you go into the iTunes store and sign up for an account via the regular dialogue box, you'll be forced to put in a credit card to continue. The way to avoid this step is to get through to this dialogue box from a different location.
Instead of clicking 'sign up' from the top bar, go into the iTunes store (not signed into any iTunes account) and find a free app. If you click on this app to 'buy' it, you'll be taken to the login/sign up box again. If you input your details in this one, however, the credit card page will give you a 'none' option for payments.
"If you select None, you will be asked to provide a payment method when you make your first purchase," iTunes says — so as long as you don't want to actually buy anything, you won't have to give them your credit card details.
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