How To Watch Sherlock: The Abominable Bride outside the UK

Sherlock Magnifying Glass

Great news! Sherlock is back for a Christmas Special called The Abominable Bride.

If you’re outside the UK and you try to watch Sherlock at the same time as it is shown live in the UK then you’ll be disappointed as it is blocked. In this guide I’m going to look at how to watch Sherlock: The Abominable Bride outside the UK in any country in the world.

Sherlock: The Abominable Bride will be shown on British TV on BBC 1 in the United Kingdom on January 1st, 2015 at 21:00. It will also be shown on their online service BBC iPlayer at the same time and available later on the catch-up service.

This special episode is set to be an exciting one with Mrs Ricoletti’s ghost causing all sorts of problems as she is rumoured to be prowling the streets of London.

From the trailer it looks like a scary one so might be worth hiding behind your sofa. Although with a gun carrying ghost it might not be all that it seems, I’m excited to find out.

Let’s take a look at how you’ll be able to watch Sherlock: The Abominable Bride outside the UK on January 1st.

Watch Sherlock: The Abominable Bride outside the UK

The special will be shown on BBC iPlayer that is the online streaming service from the BBC. If you try to watch outside the UK then it checks your internet connection to see your location and when it sees you’re outside the UK it blocks you.

BBC iPlayer blocked March 2015

To bypass this block, you need to sign up to a service called a VPN. A VPN allows you to disguise your online location and appear in another country. To watch Sherlock: The Abominable Bride you’ll use the VPN service to appear as if you are in the United Kingdom and then you won’t be blocked.

VPN services are really easy to use and involve downloading a small program to your computer and then clicking to connect to the UK. The software then takes care of the rest of the work for you. There are also apps available for Android and iOS meaning you can watch either on your computer, tablet or phone.

To stream video content from BBC iPlayer it requires a premium VPN service which luckily doesn’t come with a premium price tag. From just £4-5 (US$5-10) per month you can get one of the better VPN services suitable to watch Sherlock and if you only want to use it to watch Sherlock then you’ll only need a 1 month account.

I’ve been testing VPN services for as long as I can remember so have put together a list of three of the best for watching the Sherlock Christmas special. I personally use IPVanish to watch BBC iPlayer as I find them the fastest and cheapest but feel free to check out the others too.

  1. IPVanish
  2. TorGuard
  3. LiquidVPN

Once you’ve signed up keep reading as I’ll show you how easy it is to use the VPN to watch Sherlock.

How do I use the VPN to watch Sherlock?

After you’ve signed up to one of the VPN providers suggested above just download their software for your computer, either PC or Mac or if you have a tablet or phone then download their app from the relevant app store.

The next stage is really simple, load their software or app and connect to their UK option. With IPVanish this is under Server Selection and then by pressing UK Media or Gaming as can be seen in the image below. The process is much the same with the other providers too.


IPVanish UK Media or Gaming

When the software or app tells you it is connected you can now visit the BBC iPlayer website.

Read below to find out when Sherlock is on live in your time zone and what to do if you miss it.

When is Sherlock: The Abominable Bride on in my time zone?

Just to recap Sherlock will be shown on 1st January 2016 at 21:00 in the UK which is the GMT/UTC time zone. If you miss this live showing then you can catch-up using the same VPN for up to 30 days afterwards on BBC iPlayer.

If you want to watch live then the following times should give you a guide on what time to tune-in in your country.

Sydney (Australia – New South Wales)Saturday, 2 January 2016, 08:00:00AEDTUTC+11 hours
Beijing (China – Beijing Municipality)Saturday, 2 January 2016, 05:00:00CSTUTC+8 hours
Toronto (Canada – Ontario)Friday, 1 January 2016, 16:00:00ESTUTC-5 hours
New York (U.S.A. – New York)Friday, 1 January 2016, 16:00:00ESTUTC-5 hours
Los Angeles (U.S.A. – California)Friday, 1 January 2016, 13:00:00PSTUTC-8 hours
Berlin (Germany – Berlin)Friday, 1 January 2016, 22:00:00CETUTC+1 hour
Cape Town (South Africa)Friday, 1 January 2016, 23:00:00SASTUTC+2 hours
Auckland (New Zealand)Saturday, 2 January 2016, 10:00:00NZDTUTC+13 hours

What to expect from the Sherlock special

There isn’t too much information about what the new special episode will entail, but one thing is for sure from the trailer that Sherlock and Watson get more than a few scares from the ghost of Mrs Ricoletti and it promises to be one of the most thrilling episodes of the show yet.

Take a look at the trailer to wet your appetite until the 1st January.

Image courtesy of Master isolated images 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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