How to watch Christmas TV from Britain while abroad

British Christmas TV

Christmas is less than a week away and if you’re looking to watch Christmas TV programmes from Britain while you’re abroad then you’ll be pleased to know it’s possible and I’m going to explain exactly how you can achieve that in the easiest and cheapest way.

Christmas is a great time to watch TV especially TV from Britain. There are loads of great films, comedies and more on TV at Christmas and let’s not forget all the specials.

While it might not be for everyone some of the biggest draws this Christmas will be the soap Christmas specials from the likes of Eastenders and Coronation Street and if they’re not on your radar then how about the Downton Abbey Series 6 Finale or even Dr Who which will grace our screens on Christmas Day.

The British Christmas TV period stretches all the way from now until a few days after New Years Day and with programmes like the new series of Sherlock on New Years Day plus a whole lot more it’s a great time to watch British TV while abroad.

All of the main TV stations have online streaming solutions with both live and catch-up TV and some of the favourites include BBC iPlayer from the BBC, ITV Player from ITV, All 4 from Channel 4 and Demand 5 from Channel 5.

If you have a subscription service like Sky, BT Sport or Virgin then you can also keep up with your premium TV channels while abroad and below I’m going to show you exactly how you can watch all this Christmas goodness abroad no matter where you are in the world this festive season.

How to watch Christmas TV from Britain while abroad

If you’ve tried to watch any of the streaming services both the free ones and the subscription ones then you’ll know it’s not possible outside Britain. This is really disappointing especially if you’re an expat, on holiday or just away from Britain for a period of time over Christmas.

You’ve no doubt already tried and seen a block message similar to the one below which is why you’ve ended up searching out this article.

BBC Blocked Example 2015

Rather than missing out on all the Christmas TV from Britain there is a simple way to watch Christmas TV from any country.

What you need is a service called a VPN or Virtual Private Network to use the full name.

A VPN is simple to use and comes in software and app form for most computers and tablets/phones. What a VPN does is send your internet connection via a third party location.

For example you visit BBC iPlayer, firstly your request gets sent to a VPN server in the UK which then passes it on to BBC iPlayer. BBC iPlayer sees a UK connection so sends back the programme you’re trying to watch to the VPN server which then passes it on to you wherever you are in the world. All this is done seamlessly without you even noticing.

It acts sort of like a middle man and while it sounds incredibly complicated you’ll be really shocked just how easy it is.

Where can I get a VPN for Christmas TV

Most VPN providers offer software for PC and Mac and apps for Android and iOS which require you to make one or two clicks to get set-up and nothing more.

You can get VPN services from hundreds of different companies these days. There are plenty of good ones and then some who aren’t so good.

The most important feature required is speed because you’re transferring video so I’ve put my three recommended providers below. All you have to do is click on their name, sign-up, download their software and then you’re ready to watch as much British Christmas TV while abroad as you want.

  1. IPVanish
  2. ExpressVPN *
  3. VyprVPN **

* Doesn’t work for BBC iPlayer.
** Doesn’t work for BBC iPlayer or Sky Go.

What do I do now?

When you’ve signed up to one of the providers above you’ll either receive your login and password in an email or you’ll have selected them yourself when signing up.

The next thing to do is download the software or app for the device you’re going to use. All three providers above have software for Windows and Mac computers and laptops and they also have apps for Android and iOS so if you have a tablet or phone you’re covered too.

You can switch between their software and apps with the one account. So feel free to install on both your computer and mobile device.

Next you simply select their UK option which is also known as a “server” and then press connect.

Wait a few seconds to connect and once connected you can access all the UK streaming services and watch British Christmas TV abroad.

Take a look at my example video below in which I use IPVanish on a Windows 10 PC to watch BBC iPlayer and below that find a list of the most popular British streaming channels that you can watch Christmas TV on.

Streaming channels to use with your VPN

Below is a list of the most popular and well-known services you can use with the VPN service. Just click any of the links once you’re connected to the UK.



Image courtesy of imagerymajestic at

Christopher Seward

Author: Christopher Seward

After 25 years of using the internet, 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.

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