How to watch BBC iPlayer from abroad

Updated on: 11 June 2019
Updated on:11 June 2019

Due to licensing restrictions, BBC iPlayer is only available from within the UK. While there are plenty of other content services you can use overseas, for many there is nothing quite the same as watching UK TV shows from the BBC on iPlayer.

Let’s jump straight in.

1. Watch BBC iPlayer abroad

Step one: Sign up for NordVPN and install the VPN

Follow this link to NordVPN and click “Grab the deal”

Watch BBC iPlayer abroad with NordVPN

Choose the plan you want. If you’re living abroad and will want to use iPlayer and other services regularly, then you can save a lot of money by signing up for longer.

NordVPN pricing options

Enter your email address and payment info and click “Continue”.

Once your payment has gone through, you’ll get a confirmation link and will be able to log in to the website to download the VPN software.

Click the downloads tab on the page and the website will identify your device type and recommend the correct software. Click Download.

Download the app

When the download is complete, open it and agree to the terms of service.

Step two: Sign in to the VPN and choose a server in the UK

Load up the VPN software (Search for NordVPN in Windows search if you don’t see it) and enter your email address and the password you chose when you signed up.

The great thing about NordVPN is that they have loads of set up options to keep nerds entertained, but the software comes preconfigured so you don’t actually have to change anything the first time you use it.

Simply find the UK on the map, click the arrow and NordVPN will connect.

If you want to know more about the advanced features, check our full NordVPN review here.

UK server to watch BBC iPlayer abroad

Step three: Access BBC iPlayer

Now follow this link to iPlayer and choose the programme you want to watch.

You’ll need to sign in, or register if you haven’t used iPlayer before. If you’ve recently moved away from the UK just use your old postcode.

And that’s it. You can now watch BBC iPlayer from anywhere in the world without restrictions.

2. Why is BBC iPlayer blocked outside the UK?

BBC iPlayer uses geo-blocking to prevent users located outside the UK accessing the service. This is done by reading the public IP address used by the person trying to connect, and checking its geographical location.

If you are trying to access BBC iPlayer from outside the UK you will get a message that access to the site has been blocked.

So in order to access BBC iPlayer from anywhere, you need to use a service that will provide you with an IP address within the UK to cloak your true location. Using this method you can also watch ITV from the USA or anywhere else in the world.

Whilst it may sound daunting, it’s actually very simple to set up and use.

Access to BBC iPlayer is made easy with a VPN, regardless of where you are located and what device you are using.

3. Using a VPN to Watch the BBC Outside of the UK

Watching BBC iPlayer when abroad is easy with a VPN. The best VPNs start from as little as $3 per month and require no technical expertise to set-up and start using.

Once you choose the right VPN for you, simply sign up for a subscription and download their software. This takes a matter of minutes and is a very straightforward process.

Once you have the VPN in place, you simply open the it and choose the country you wish to connect from (which in this case would be the UK).

Now you have full access to content from the UK as if you were actually there.

That’s it. It really is this easy to use a VPN to watch BBC iPlayer.

Written by: Elizabeth March

Advanced ITSEC Specialist Based in Cambridge, England, Elizabeth has held notable positions for a range of high-profile vendors and clients in the European IT Security and Communications Sector. As a former IT Trainer, Technical Specialist, and Product Manager; she transitioned into the role of an expert IT Copywriter in 2015. Since then, her works have been published globally, and she continues to help people easily decipher complex technical challenges and make informed decisions about their digital lives.

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