How to watch UK TV in Portugal

Watch UK TV in Portugal

In this article, we’re going to look at the easiest method to watch UK TV in Portugal. It’s so easy in fact you’ll be able to achieve it in just 6 simple steps.

If you’re a novice computer, tablet or phone user then you need not worry either as it’s extremely beginner-friendly.

If you’re an ex-pat in Portugal, on holiday in Portugal or for whatever other reason you’re in Portugal then you’ll probably already know that UK TV services are blocked.

The easiest way to access UK TV in Portugal is to use online streaming services such as BBC iPlayer and all you’re going to need to do that is a simple app called a VPN. Below we explain all.

How to get British TV in Portugal

If you’re already in Portugal and you’ve tried to access one of the UK streaming services like BBC iPlayer or Sky Go then you’ll already know you’re blocked from viewing.

Rather than being able to stream the TV you want to watch you’ll see a block message that looks something a little like this:

BBC iPlayer blocked July 17

To avoid this block you need to get yourself an app called a VPN.

VPN services are available for Android, iOS, Windows and Mac which we cover below. They’re also available for the Amazon Fire TV and SmartTV’s which we’ll cover later in this guide.

A VPN will set you back between £3 – £7 depending on how long you sign up for. The longer you subscribe, the cheaper the price.

To get yourself a VPN for Android, iOS, Windows or Mac just follow the simple instructions below:

Steps to get started:

  1. Visit the VPN provider ExpressVPN and then sign up.
  2. Select a package length and enter the required personal and payment details.
  3. Once sign-up is complete go back to the main ExpressVPN website and click Products.
  4. Select the correct app for your device, download and install it.
  5. Run the app and login when necessary.
  6. Click Selected Location and select United Kingdom on the map and press Connect.

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Below you can see examples of how to connect on both a mobile device and a desktop or laptop.

Android / iOS:

ExpressVPN UK Android

Watch on your mobile device.

Windows / Mac:

ExpressVPN connecting to the UK

Watch on a computer or laptop.

After about 15 seconds the app should inform you it has connected.

When you visit websites they’ll now think you’re in the UK even though you’re actually in Portugal or anywhere else in the world for that matter.

All that is left to do now is visit your favourite UK TV streaming service and rather than be blocked like before you’ll now be able to watch anything.

We’ve rounded up a few of the best UK TV streaming websites at the bottom of this article.

When you’ve finished simply disconnect and your internet connection returns to normal. You can reconnect at any time as long as you have a subscription to ExpressVPN.

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Watch UK TV in Portugal on a Smart TV

If you’ve got a Smart TV then the process is a little different and there are two options. One is cheaper and available on only some Smart TVs, the other is more expensive but is available on all Smart TVs that have WiFi capability.

Process 1 (The cheap method)

You’ll first need to check if your Smart TV allows you to change the “DNS Settings”. You can find out if this is possible or how to do it by referring to your user manual.

You’ll also need to sign up for a different VPN provider that comes with a SmartDNS service included.

Below we’ll use the Samsung Smart TV as an example:

  1. Visit StrongVPN and press Join Now to sign-up.
  2. Select a subscription length and enter the required personal and payment details.
  3. Once sign up is complete go to your Smart TV.
  4. Press Menu and go to the Settings Menu.
  5. Scroll down to the Network section and select Network Settings.
  6. Press Start on the next screen. Select your Internet connection and if using Wi-Fi enter your Wi-Fi password.
  7. Select IP Settings. Find the option DNS Settings and enter the following:

Press Next and wait for it to test the settings.

You can now switch your TV off and on again and try and access the various apps for UK TV services.

Process 2 (The all else fails more expensive option)

If you can’t change the DNS settings on your Smart TV but it has Wi-Fi access then you’ll need to buy a hardware device called an Invizbox 2.

The Invizbox 2 handles the VPN connection for you and enables TVs or other devices that don’t have VPN capability.

Once your Invizbox 2 arrives configure it to access the United Kingdom as per the included instructions and then connect to the new Wi-Fi hotspot.

You’ll now be able to access the TV services via the apps.

UK TV Services

A VPN and SmartDNS work with both free to air and subscription services.

Below we’ve listed a few of the best that you can now watch in Portugal. You’ll of course need a subscription in the UK to access the subscription services though.


  • BBC iPlayer
  • ITV Player
  • Channel 4
  • Channel 5


  • Sky Go
  • Virgin TV Anywhere
  • BT Sport
  • Sky Sports
  • Eurosport

Don’t forget, all you need is a VPN which you can get by clicking the link below and following the instructions earlier in this guide.


If you’re looking to access UK TV while you are in Portugal, you’ll need to bypass the regional restrictions that are in place on British television.

To do so, you will need a VPN such as ExpressVPN. Set yourself up now and watch all of your favourite UK channels while sitting on your balcony in the sun.

Start watching in Portugal now

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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. David Clifford

    Hola. Will your instructions work on Madeira Island. We are moving to Madeira in late January 2022. Do we just carry on subscribing to Sky in the UK. The receiver box belongs to Sky as per our contract which still has a few months to run. We will probably have to let the 18 month contract run in any case. In information would be very welcome
    Many thanks Dave Clifford

    • Christopher Seward

      Hi Dave,

      If you kept a contract in the UK then you could use a VPN app to use the Sky Go app while in Madeira, or anywhere else in the world for that matter.

      You wouldn’t, however, be able to use the receiver box on your TV in Madeira. If you wanted to watch on a real TV you would need to buy some kind of cable to link a laptop or tablet
      to your TV and use the Sky Go app + VPN.

      Let me know if you need any other help and enjoy Madeira, Funchal is lovely!

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