How to Enjoy UK TV Channels in USA

Last Updated on December 15, 2023

Simple Method to Enjoy UK TV Abroad

This article is going to demonstrate how it’s possible to access UK TV channels in the USA without investing in expensive subscription plans to cable and satellite TVs.   You can in fact access everyone of the UK’s TV stations online from the US with little cost and no real technical knowledge.

First of all let’s remind ourselves of the main UK TV channels which are available for free online –

  • BBC – arguably the best, has 12 live streaming channels 24 hours a day plus a huge archive called BBC iPlayer.  All without any adverts at all and funded via the UK television license – BBC iPlayer
  • ITV – UK’s largest commercial TV channel which also broadcasts the majority of it’s programmes live on it’s website.  Famous for many world class dramas like Downton Abbey and some great reality TV shows like Love Island, The X Factor –   ITV Hub .
  • Channel 4 – another popular commercial TV station which broadcasts live online.  Their archive is also very impressive and there’s some great comedies, documentaries, arts programmes and of course lots of reality TV shows too like the quirky Gogglebox – Channel 4.
  • Channel 5 – is the newest UK commercial station yet has quickly established a large audience.  Probably directed at the slightly younger audience, there’s lots of documentaries, soaps, comedies and reality shows.  Not all shows are broadcast live but most are available in their archive which you can access for free supported by advertising – Channel 5.

Every one of these channels is available entirely free of charge over the internet, with one small catch – only if you’re in the United Kingdom.  Like most major media companies, the UK Television companies only allow unrestricted access to their domestic markets.  For anyone else they’ll be greeted with a meeting similar to this –

 UK TV Channels in USA Message

What’s happening is behind the scenes, a profile is being built up about you when you connect.  This profile includes your location which is largely determined from your IP address.  This is the unique network address that every device needs when you’re connecting to the internet.  Everything you use online has one of these addresses – laptops, PCs, smart phones basically any internet enabled device and unfortunately they cannot be changed.

So if you’re restricted based on your location and you can’t change the IP address that determines this then what’s the solution?

How Anyone Can Watch UK TV Channels in USA

Fortunately there’s a way to bypass these restrictions and in truth it’s not very difficult.  In fact, it’s so simple that literally millions of people use the following method to enjoy all the UK TV channels from the USA and anywhere in the world.  The method doesn’t involve changing your IP address (which is actually extremely difficult to do) rather hiding your address through a third party.

All you need to do is to route your connection through a computer located in the United Kingdom for this to work.  This isn’t as difficult as it sounds, indeed it can be achieved with a single click if you use the right software.

Here’s an example of how

In the video, access to the BBC and all the other UK TV channels is achieved by connecting through a VPN service.  The VPN (Virtual private network) is a method of securing your internet connection which also grants complete privacy online too.  Many of us have used these with our work computers and laptops, yet now they’re used all over the world as a simple method to bypass all these country based locks and restrictions.   As you can see in the video, although it sounds technical it just really involves clicking on the right country and waiting for it to connect.

As soon as you’re connected to a VPN server, then you will appear to be from that location.  The websites you visit can’t see  your real location just that of the VPN server, which means it’s an incredibly simple way to access blocked websites all over the world.

In fact although it’s often used by Americans to watch UK Television stations like the BBC it’s usefulness doesn’t stop there.  It can be used when travelling to enable access to US only websites too, as you’ll find exactly the same thing happens to US media sites like NBC when you travel.  What’s more you can switch the VPN to whatever country you like, the encryption remains the same but it can allow you access to any site in that country.  Lots of Americans also use it to watch Canadian TV from the US, and vice versa!

Watch Other TV Channels in USA e.g Indian

It’s hard to express how useful using a VPN is until you’ve used them. Most people get used to the ‘sorry not available in your location’ type messages without a second thought. However as soon as you have a decent VPN to use which has lots of different countries available then suddenly things change.

Suddenly the barriers fall away and it doesn’t matter where you happen to be – your location becomes pretty much irrelevant as the VPN can be used to switch it at will. IN the video below you’ll see how the same VPN can be used to access Indian TV stations which broadcast online like Hotstar.

The method is nearly identical before you visit your intended website simply enable the VPN and click on the country you need.  From that point you’ll appear to be in that location and all restrictions will be removed and you can watch the same sites as a native viewer could.  It’s especially useful for people who travel a lot, expats or simply have interests in other locations across the world.  If you’re against restrictions and censorship then you should certainly be using some sort of VPN that’s for sure.

When you’re picking a VPN for bypassing geo-restrictions then remember that it’s primarily the IP addresses that are important.  If you’re primarily interested in streaming UK TV channels then your priority has to be UK IP addresses, make sure they’re plentiful and work properly.  Overuse of IP addresses is the primary reason that VPNs don’t work, if a service has a couple of British IP addresses shared among thousands of users then they will get blocked.  It will happen occasionally even with the most extensive VPN network providers but the best ones ensure that you have plenty of other IP addresses to choose from.

For example with Nord VPN they have hundreds of UK IP addresses and servers so you’ll always be able to connect.  However knowing the popularity of being able to access the BBC they have even optimized many servers specifically for this purpose. If you want to watch the BBC and you’re using NordVPn then make sure you read this post about which servers to use for maximum reliability.



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