How to Fill out PDF Forms: Top PDF Form Fillers

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Knowing how to fill out a PDF form is a need when applying for jobs, school, or foreign country visas. Many editors offer the toolkit to fill in PDF forms, however, some may have limitations.

To help you pick the best PDF form filler, we compiled a review of 5 popular programs. All these PDF editors offer form-filling capability. Read on to find one for you!

how we test products

How we tested PDF form fillers

This article describes some of the best software to fill out PDF forms. We took 5 popular programs and tested them with the same PDF form. To rate them, we looked at the following criteria:

  • Simplicity of filling forms with the program.
  • Number of features available for free.
  • System requirements.
  • Cost of the PRO subscription.
  • Languages translated.
  • Operating systems supported.
  • Watermarks being added with a free account.

The review is based on the user's experience who had never worked with any of these PDF form fillers. Hence, it also included how easy it is to navigate the website and get the necessary software installed.

1. Icecream PDF Editor

This is a fairly simple and capable PDF editor that allows you to fill out PDF forms of your documents. There are 4 modes in this program and the "Fill in forms" is one of them.

The other 3 are "Edit", "Annotate" and "Manage pages". Use them to edit the content of your files. add new text, and annotate documents using various tools. Delete, rotate, and add new pages to your files.

In addition, the PDF form filler does not take up much space on your PC and is installed in seconds.

How to fill out a form on PDF

Pros:

  • Free software to fill out PDF forms (can be upgraded for additional functionality).
  • Easy to work with even for beginners.
  • Fast form filling even on low-performance computers and laptops.
  • Includes PDF editor with a user-friendly interface.
  • Ability to delete and insert PDF pages, stamp PDF, and more.

Cons:

  • Only available for Windows PCs and laptops.
  • Adds a watermark in the free version.

The program is translated into 13 different languages. The minimum disk space requirement is 200MB and 2GB of RAM is recommended. The upgrade to PRO is $49.95 for lifetime access.

Rating

Trustpilot 4.7
G2crowd 4.3

2. PDF Studio

The major advantage of using fillable PDF forms is that they are easy to distribute. Many PDF form fillers are compatible with different OS and devices. Moreover, PDF forms preserve the formatting untouched, ensuring consistency when people fill them out. (LinkedIn)

This PDF editor offers plenty of features for working with PDF, including work on fillable PDF forms. It allows you to create and fill out PDF forms that are already in the file. Additionally, you can import them from scans of documents, DOC files, and images.

Another notable feature of this PDF form filler is the built-in OCR, which is very handy for working with scanned files. You can also protect PDF documents, create them from scratch, annotate, split, and merge files, and more.

App to fill in PDF forms - PDF Studio

Pros:

  • Easy to use PDF forms filling software and editor.
  • Ability to share PDF documents via Google Drive.
  • Compatible with Windows, Linux, and macOS.
  • Extensive set of other tools to work with PDFs.

Cons:

  • The free version of the formfill software puts a watermark on the final document.
  • Has to have an Internet connection for product activation.
  • Due to updates, some older computer models may not be able to run the application.

This is a paid program with subscriptions beginning from $99. Although users can download a trial version. It is available in 6 languages and requires no less than 1024 MB of free RAM. 400 MB of free hard disk space is needed. OCR language packs will require additional space.

Rating

G2crowd 4.5
Capterra 4.4

PDF Studio website

3. Foxit PDF Reader

This is quite a simple program for creating and filling out a form in PDF format. There is also functionality to sign and annotate PDF documents. A standard set of options and a clear interface make it easy to operate even for users with minimal experience in working on documents.

All in all, it is a pretty handy PDF form filler if you do not need extended functionality. For a more functional updated version of this PDF reader with editing capabilities, you will have to sign up for an annual subscription.

PDF form filler

Pros:

  • User-friendly and intuitive interface to fill out PDF forms.
  • Does not require high performance of a personal computer or laptop.
  • Annotate, sign and protect your PDF besides the form filling feature.
  • Has versions for Windows, macOS, Linus, and other operating systems.
  • The basic version is free. Can be upgraded to a PDF editor.

Cons:

  • The installation of separate additional plug-ins may be needed (like a spellchecker).
  • Does not include the PDF editing PDF capabilities (change or add text, etc.).

The upgraded software cost starts at $13.25 per month (has options with student discounts). To run, the program requires 512 MB RAM (Recommended: 1 GB RAM or greater) and 1 GB of available hard drive space. It is translated into 40+ languages.

Rating

G2crowd 4.5
Capterra 4.5
Trustpilot 2.2

Foxit PDF Editor

4. PDFescape

PDF fill-in forms are widely used for submitting different types of applications, including filing taxes to the IRS. (Adobe)

This is a fairly easy-to-use PDF editor that also allows you to fill out PDF forms. It works on Windows as an app to fill in PDF forms and has an online version, too. The utility has the ability to share data over the Internet by URL and via cloud storage.

Apart from being one of the solutions to fill out a form on PDF, the program includes other instruments like page rearrangement, printing, saving, and publishing. However, certain features are only available with the premium subscription.

How to fill in forms in PDF in PDFescape

Pros:

  • Great functionality in both desktop and online PDF form-filling versions.
  • Built-in PDF editing tools.
  • The online version is free to use.

Cons:

  • The free version only works with small PDF files (up to 10 MB).
  • Advertisements appear as you work with your file.
  • Only Windows desktop version, users with operating systems have to use the online platform.

The PDF form filler is available only in 4 languages. The Windows software price begins at $2.99 per month. It requires RAW memory of 1 GB and disk space of 100 MB or more available.

Rating

Capterra 4.5
G2crowd 4.1
Trustpilot 1.8

PDFescape official website

5. Nitro PDF PRO

Quite a well-known PDF editor in particular communities with the feature to fill in PDF forms and create them, too. Compatible with cloud storage, where you can upload documents for more convenient work. This PDF form filler has a fairly large set of features, including the ability to create PDF files, sign digital papers, edit, convert PDFs, etc.

There is a 14-day free trial version of the PDF formfill software, so you can see what it can do. However, if your work requires dealing with fillable PDF forms regularly, you will need the PRO version, which is quite expensive.

How to fill in forms in PDF in Nitro PDF

Pros:

  • Software to fill out PDF forms with a user-friendly interface.
  • Compatible with various cloud services.
  • Additional tools included are highlighting, annotating, drawing, and some others.
  • Compatible with macOS and Windows computers.

Cons:

  • Limited free features, compared to other programs listed.
  • On the Mac version, add a watermark to the files.
  • Requires signing up even for filling out PDF forms with the trial access.

The program supports 15+ languages and offers OCR for them. The free trial of the software is available for 14 days. The lifetime license is pricey - from $179.99 per user. The software requires RAM of 1 GB and available hard disk space of 4.5 GB.

Rating

Capterra 4.5
G2crowd 4.3
Trustpilot 4.0

Nitro PDF PRO

Application of PDF form fillers

PDF forms are used by research institutions and universities as a fast method of data collection. (PennWest California)

Understanding how to fill out PDF forms is a useful skill for many people. This knowledge can help streamline processes, save time, and reduce errors.

  • Fillable PDF forms are used in a variety of contexts, from submitting job applications to completing medical questionnaire. Having a reliable PDF form filler will ensure efficiency and can make a big difference when it comes to making sure information is accurate.
  • Understanding the process of PDF form filling equips users to quickly and easily enter data. Users do not have to print out the form, fill it out with a pen or pencil, and then scan it back into the computer. Instead, they can simply write on PDF forms, which saves time and effort.
  • Furthermore, knowing how to fill out a form on PDF enables users to save work progress and come back later. As a result, after taking a break, they can return to it without any worry of losing the information that was have put into the PDF formfill software.
  • Additionally, fillable PDF forms are so common because they are in the universal format that can be opened on virtually any device or platform with no compatibility issues at all. This means that regardless of what device users have, they can easily access and fill in a PDF form.

Overall, getting a program or familiarizing yourself with services for filling out PDF forms is an important skill for professionals across different industries. Learning how to fill in forms in PDF enables them to quickly and accurately complete applications without wasting time or risking data loss.

Why can't I fill in a PDF form?

If you received a form, it does not automatically mean that it is one of the many fillable PDF forms that you can easily complete. Some documents are not designed to be edited or protected from changes. Moreover, not all editors allow filling out PDF forms, and even if they do, you may find that certain fields are unresponsive.

Sometimes you may have an outdated version of the PDF form-filling software that prevents you from using the program to its fullest capacity. Other times, your struggle to fill out a form on PDF is caused by an error in the software you use.

To fill in forms in the PDF format properly, you need a simple yet well-functioning PDF editor. For example, Icecream PDF Editor give you full control over how you edit and save your forms.

Conclusion

In this article, we have shared the top choices of PDF form fillers. Each of them has its own advantages and disadvantages based on the tasks at hand, additional functionality, ease of use, cost, and so on.

Which software for filling out PDF forms to choose and use is up to you to decide. Explore the suggested options and pick the one that works best for you!

Aiden Anderson

Icecream Apps Staff Writer

Aiden Anderson, a talented tech writer, serves as a staff writer at Icecream Apps while also contributing articles to Video Candy and Resume Trick. At Icecream Apps, he delivers compelling content with his expertise in the tech industry. With a diverse range of topics under his belt, Aiden ensures readers across these platforms receive valuable and informative articles.
6 min read
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