How to watch British TV in France

UK and France flags

In this article we’re going to show you how you can watch British TV in France.

For those of you lucky enough to live in France or travel there then you’ll already know the great sights, the amazing food and the atmosphere that France has.

Who can deny the quality of the lifestyle there especially if you now live there regularly. Even if you only travel there for a holiday you can definitely appreciate the way of life.

While France is a great country and over a quarter of a million Brits now call it home with countless more visiting for shorter periods of time one thing most of you often miss is British TV.

Although TV in France has some good offerings there is nothing like watching TV in your mother tongue with humour that only us Brits would understand.

This has become even more an issue since the UK left the EU and EU portability rules no longer applied meaning UK TV is again inaccessible.

So today we’re going to show you how you can keep up with home and watch British TV in France using a service called a VPN.

Allowing you to watch everything from soaps like Eastenders to documentaries from the likes of David Attenborough and everything in between.

What you’ll need to watch UK TV in France

The UK has some of the best online coverage for TV services in the world with the likes of BBC iPlayer, ITV PlayerAll 4 and Demand 5 covering the terrestrial channels. The initial three have both live and catch-up services available online.

Online streaming also extends to subscription services like Sky Go from Sky and Virgin TV Anywhere from Virgin Media allowing you to watch premium pay for TV online.

Unfortunately, one downside of every service mentioned there is they are only accessible from within the UK and as soon as you travel outside they’re blocked. If you try to access them outside the UK you’ll see a message similar to the following:

Blocked TV

The great news is it is possible to bypass these blocks with the aid of a VPN and watch all of the services mentioned above.

A VPN allows you to disguise your location and virtually reside in any country. For the purpose of watching British TV in France, you want to appear as if you’re in the UK.

A VPN takes your connection and feeds it through the UK making the services think you are in the UK. Once you’ve finished watching you can simply disconnect and your internet connection reverts to normal.

Below I’ll show you where you can get a VPN and how to use it to watch British TV in France.

Where can I get a VPN

A quick search of Google will produce thousands of VPN services from various companies around the world.

The first feature to look for is that they have a VPN server in the UK. Most VPN services do so it won’t be hard to tick this box.

The second feature to look for is a fast VPN provider because streaming video from the UK to France requires good speeds. As France isn’t too far away it isn’t overly important but if you live or are staying rurally then a fast VPN provider can make the difference between smooth playback and buffering.

A good VPN service should cost no more than about £4-£7 per month depending on how long you sign up for.

Below are our three recommended VPN providers to watch British TV in France.

  1. ExpressVPNRecommended!
  2. NordVPN
  3. CyberGhost VPN

How do I use the VPN to watch British TV in France

The next stage after signing up is to download the required software or app for your device.

If you’re using a PC or Mac desktop or laptop then the process is simple. Just download the software for the VPN service you signed up to, connect to the UK and then visit the required streaming website.

Rather than being hit with a block message you’ll be able to stream live and catch-up TV.

If you want to watch streaming services on your tablet or phone then you must have that streaming service’s app installed on your tablet while you’re in the UK. For example, you will need the BBC iPlayer app installed on your mobile device already to watch it in France.

The process is exactly the same on a tablet or phone. Just download the VPN provider’s app from the app store either the Google Play or Apple App Store and then connect to the UK.

Once you’re connected run the app for the streaming service you want to watch and again instead of seeing a block message you’ll be able to stream whatever programmes and shows you want.

If you’re wondering if the process will be hard then you’ll be pleasantly surprised. Just take a look at the example screenshot of the Windows VPN software from ExpressVPN below.

All you have to do is select United Kingdom (1.) and then press Connect (2.).

Once it’s connected you can now watch any British online TV streaming service.

ExpressVPN connecting to the UK

Use ExpressVPN to unlock UK TV in France.

Some TV services you might want to try with your new VPN service are below.

Free to view:

Subscription Services:

Enjoy watching British TV in France!

30-day money back guarantee

Author: Christopher Seward

Having used the internet since 1994, Christopher launched one of the very first VPN comparison websites in 2013. An expert in the field his reviews, testing and knowledge have helped thousands of users get the correct VPN for their needs.


  1. pausten

    Thanks for your roundup: I currently subscribe to pure VPN, but actually, not happy:
    I always intended to use it to watch TV on the, err, TV.
    However, it works fine on the P.C. but was involved to set-up on the router.
    Having purchased a new TV for Christmas, I sat down & tried to program my router, only to discover that Pure VPN does not support Linksys Genie routers, running Linksys original software.
    QUESTION? – Will IPVanish?

    • VPNCompare

      Hi Pausten,

      Does the router have VPN capability built in? I’m not familiar with that exact router.

  2. pausten

    Thanks for your speedy reply.
    Yes. See screen shot below:-

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