How to combine PDF files on a Mac

How to combine PDF files on a Mac

It’s no secret that PDF (Portable Document Format) files are standard for sharing and preserving documents across different platforms. At times, however, you may encounter situations where you need to merge multiple PDF files into a single cohesive document.

If you’re a Mac user, you’ll be delighted to know that combining PDFs on a Mac is a straightforward process that requires no specialized software. In this step-by-step guide, we’ll walk you through different methods to merge PDF files on your Mac, making combining PDFs a document management breeze.

Method 1: How to merge two or more PDF files on Mac using Preview

Open the “Finder” and locate the PDF files you wish to merge.

Select all the PDF files you want to combine by holding down the “Command” key while clicking on each file.

Right-click on any of the selected files, then choose “Open With” and select “Preview.”

In Preview, each PDF file will appear as a separate thumbnail on the left sidebar.

To rearrange the order of the PDFs, drag and drop the thumbnails into the desired sequence.

Once the pages are in the correct order, go to the “Edit” menu and click “Select All” to ensure that all pages are selected.

Now, click the “Edit” menu again, followed by “Copy.”

Create a new blank document in Preview by clicking “File” and “New From Clipboard.” This will paste all the selected pages into the new PDF.

Save the newly combined PDF by clicking “File” and then “Save.” Give your merged PDF a name, choose the destination folder, and click “Save.”

Method 2: How to merge PDFs on Mac in just a few steps using Foxit PDF Editor

This is one of the most simplified ways to combine PDF files. If you have Foxit PDF Editor installed on your Mac, open it. If you don’t have it, you can download it here. Then follow the instructions at the end of this article to activate it, and come back here for the details you’ll need to combine PDF files on Mac.

Click “Convert” in the Ribbon, and select “Combine Files”.

In the “Combine files into a single PDF” window, click the “Add Files” button and choose the desired option from the drop-down list to add the files you want to merge. 

Arrange the files in the desired order using the “Move Up” and “Move Down” buttons.

Optionally, you can remove unwanted files by selecting them and clicking “Remove.”

Once you’re satisfied with the arrangement, click “Combine” to merge the PDF files.

Save the newly combined PDF to your preferred location by clicking “File” and then “Save.”

Method 3: How to combine PDF files using Automator

Using Automator isn’t the path a busy businessperson should take when figuring out how to merge PDF files on Mac. This way to combine PDF files does work, however. Here’s how you do it.

  1. Launch “Automator,” which can be found in the “Applications” folder.
  2. When Automator opens, click “New Document.”
  3. Select “Workflow” and click “Choose. 
  4. Search for and drag the “PDFs” category to the right-hand pane in the Actions Library on the left.
  5. In the list of actions, find and drag “Combine PDF Pages” to the workflow area on the right.
  6. Click on “Add” in the “Combine PDF Pages” action to add the PDFs you want to merge.
  7. Arrange the PDFs in the desired sequence by dragging them up or down in the list.
  8. Choose where you want to save the combined PDF by clicking “Options” and setting the output folder.
  9. Run the workflow by clicking the “Run” button in the top-right corner of the Automator window.

A new combined PDF file will be created and saved to the specified location.

Method 4: How to merge PDF files on Mac using Finder

From your desktop or a Finder window, you can combine multiple files to create a PDF. Here’s how to combine PDF files in this manner.

  1. Click the icon in the dock on your Mac to open a new Finder window.
  2. Please select files that you’d like to combine in a PDF.
  3. You can also select files from your desktop.
  4. So that you know, the files will appear in the PDF in the order you selected them.
  5. Select the files and then click Quick Actions > Create PDF.

Method 5: Combine PDF files free using online tools with Mac

Foxit Online Tools are available for free if you do not want to install new software on your Mac but need to combine PDF documents. To combine PDF files online for free with Mac, visit the Foxit Merge Tool. Then, to easily combine PDF files using the online PDF merge tool by following these simple steps.

Drag and drop your files into the drop zone.

If necessary, reorder the files.

Click on “START NOW”.

Download the combined PDF.

How to Combine Part of a PDF with Another PDF on Mac

One of the simplest methods to combine PDF files is when you only need part of a PDF inserted into another PDF file. In this case, if you’re using Preview or Foxit PDF Editor, you can select the pages you want to merge from the Pages panel in the first PDF file and drag them into the thumbnails in the Pages panel of the second PDF file. The nice thing is that either method enables you to combine multiple PDF files automatically.

How to combine scanned images into one PDF file on Mac

This option assumes you’re only looking to combine several images from whatever source you choose into a merged PDF file. You can open the images you’d like to combine in PDF using Preview. You can open several images simultaneously to speed up the process.

It may be helpful to change the view mode of Preview to Thumbnails, Contact Sheet, or the View menu on the toolbar to see all your images.

Choose “File > Print…” from the toolbar. Choose “All” Pages and “Save As PDF” in the dialog box that appears.

After you select a location for the PDF files, it will save your images in one PDF.

How to activate Foxit PDF Editor on Mac

Here are step-by-step instructions for activating the Foxit PDF Editor on Mac.

1. In the activation wizard which pops up after launching Foxit PDF Editor, click “Sign In” on the bottom right corner.

Interface showing the prompt screen to Sign in to Foxit PDF Editor Mac.

2. Enter your email address and password into the Sign-In window. Click “Login”.

Interface showing the screen to log in to Foxit PDF Editor Mac.

3. If your PDF Editor is managed by Foxit Admin Console, select the organization to which you belong.

select the organization
Image showing where to enter the Organization you belong to in Foxit PDF Editor Mac.

4. You will be prompted with the message “You have successfully registered your formal licence key.”

5. Click “OK” on the bottom right corner to restart the application.

As you’ve undoubtedly now seen, it’s easy to merge PDF files on a Mac, and you have several methods to choose from. Whether you prefer using the native Preview app, Automator, Foxit PDF Reader, or one of the other methods we’ve outlined to combine PDFs, each approach provides a simple way to combine multiple PDFs into a single document.

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