How to Watch BBC iPlayer outside the UK [October 2021]


Looking for a way to watch BBC iPlayer outside UK? All you need to do is subscribe to ExpressVPN so you can watch top trending shows like “I May Destroy You,” “Doctor Who,” “His Dark Materials,” “Fleabag,” or a list of all Adam Curtis’s documentaries on BBC iPlayer.

It is a top-notch English streaming service. However, only UK residents can access the BBC iPlayer TV service because of content geo-restriction and copyrights agreements.

Therefore, if you live outside of the United Kingdom, you will receive the following geo-location error message on your screen:

“BBC iPlayer only works in the UK. Sorry, it’s due to right issues.” 

BBC iPlayer error outside UK

How to Watch BBC iPlayer Outside the UK[Quick Steps]

Here is how to watch BBC iPlayer outside the UK in 2021:

  1. Subscribe to ExpressVPN (our top recommended).
  2. Set up and log into the VPN app.
  3. Connect to the British servers from the list.
  4. Now go to BBC iPlayer, sign in, and access BBC iPlayer outside UK.

Note: BBC will ask you if you have a TV license, just click on “I Have a TV License. Watch Now”. Use Postal Code EC3A 8BF for London, E1 OAA for East London, and E16 2JE for Docklands.

If you don’t know how to sign up for BBC iPlayer –> Jump straight to the steps mentioned below.

Best VPNs to Watch BBC iPlayer Outside UK (In-Depth Analysis)

Team ScreenBinge tested 50+ VPN services for unblocking BBC iPlayer outside UK, among which the 3 best include:

1. ExpressVPN – The Best VPN to Watch BBC iPlayer Outside UK

ExpressVPN is the best VPN for BBC iPlayer outside the UK, due to its fast speeds. On a 100Mbps connection, it averages at 89.99Mbps in downloads. This is owed to its huge server count of 3,000+ servers in 90+ countries.

For unblocking BBC iPlayer, you have access to 4 servers in 3 UK cities (Docklands, London, and Wembley)These can also come in handy to stream Eurosport outside the UK.

It allows up to 5 simultaneous connections per account which cost £4.83/mo and comes with an exclusive offer of 12 + 3 months free on their yearly package, along with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Recommended servers for BBC iPlayer: Docklands & East London.

2. Surfshark – Low-Cost VPN to Watch BBC iPlayer Outside UK

Surfshark is the most affordable choice for accessing BBC iPlayer outside the United Kingdom. It comes with an affordable 2-year plan with a tag of £1.8/mo and also offers a 30-day money-back guarantee.

The best part of all: streamers enjoy unlimited simultaneous connections on a single subscription, which comes in handy for unblocking BBC iPlayer and other channels like ABC in the UK.

For connectivity, users have access to 3,200+ servers in 65 countries, among which 3 servers are available in 3 UK cities (Glasgow, Manchester, and London). Users also have access to 5 static IPs in the United Kingdom.

The test showed that Surfshark can also unblock the Voot app UK.

Recommended servers for BBC iPlayer: Glasgow & London.

3. NordVPN – User-Friendly VPN to Watch BBC Player Outside UK

NordVPN is perhaps the most user-friendly service for accessing BBC iPlayer outside the United Kingdom. Its applications are quite intuitive and responsive. The interface allows for easy selection of servers for unblocking.

For bypassing geo-restrictions, users have 5,200+ servers in 59 countries, among which 440+ servers are located in the United Kingdom. These come in handy for watching this service outside the UK.

It can also be used to access Paramount+ in the UK. As a plus, users also enjoy 6 simultaneous connections per account with prices starting at £2.39/mo (VPN Awareness Month - 2 year plan at 72% off + 3 months FREE) on a 2-year plan.

Recommended servers for BBC iPlayer: London.

Why You Need a VPN to Watch BBC iPlayer Outside the United Kingdom

BBC iPlayer is geographically restricted to the UK location. Therefore, you will need a VPN to change your local IP address into UK IP address to access it anywhere outside the UK.

Your internet connection has your public IP address. And streaming services like BBC iPlayer use an IP address location tracking system to block the users who try to stream their content outside the UK.

Therefore, when you try to access BBC iPlayer outside the UK or anywhere except the UK. It shows you an error message. This is because the service tracks your local IP address and instantly restrains you from accessing the content.

But if you use ExpressVPN, it will allow you to change your local IP address with UK IP address. This will trick the service that you are residing in somewhere in the UK and allows you to stream its content from anywhere.

Also Read: How to unblock BT Sport outside the UK with a VPN

Can a Free VPN Works to Unblock BBC iPlayer

Yes, a free VPN can unblock BBC iPlayer outside the UK. However, I would never recommend you to use a free VPN service after what I experienced to watch BBC iPlayer outside the UK.

First, these free VPNs offer terrible speed to stream the BBC outside the UK or any other geo-blocked services as they have limited servers and many users.

Second, if you surprisingly find any free VPN that can unblock BBC iPlayer, you will face serious buffering issues and poor video quality because these Free VPNs offer restricted data limits.

Lastly, according to recent studies, 18% of free VPNs use no encryption protocols, almost 40% contained malicious malware, and 84% are vulnerable to IPv6 leaks. So, in short, there is no free VPN for BBC iPlayer that I would recommend you for watching outside the UK.

Also Read: How to stream Sky Sports outside UK

How to Sign Up for BBC iPlayer Account from Outside the UK [Step by Step]

Creating a BBC account is so easy. Follow these steps to sign up for the BBC iPlayer account:

  1. First, head to the BBC iPlayer website and click on the “Sign in” option.
  2. A new page will appear; click the “Register Now” option.
  3. Now it will ask about your personal information, including your age, dirt of birth, name, email address, and postal code. For Postal Code, we use SW1A 1AA for London, E1 OAA for East London, and E16 2JE for Docklands.
  4. Enter all these details and select the “Register” option, verify your email, and you are done.

Note: While you start watching something on BBC iPlayer, there is a possibility that you get a notification that asks you if you have a TV license since, according to British law, you must have a TV license to watch BBC iPlayer.

However, there is no check and balance by BBC iPlayer whether you have a TV license or not. This means if you click the “Yes” option, it will allow you to access the content on an immediate basis without inquiring about further information.

How to Download BBC iPlayer App Outside the UK [Easy Steps]

To download the BBC iPlayer App on your device, you must follow this BBC iPlayer download hack which requires you to connect to a VPN first, and then using a different Google account, visit the PlayStore and get the BBC iPlayer app, or else the app won’t show up on your regular account.

For Android Users

Follow the steps below to get the BBC iPlayer App for Android:

  1. But, first, sign in to Google Play Store with two or more different accounts on your Android device.
  2. Now close the Google Play Store, open the VPN app (I highly recommend ExpressVPN), and connect to any British server.
  3. Now go back to the Play Store app and search for BBC iPlayer with the existing account you are already logged in to. It won’t show you the BBC iPlayer app but don’t panic.
  4. Without closing the Play Store, switch to another account.
  5. Now search again for the BBC iPlayer app, and this time, the app will appear on the screen.
  6. Download and install the iPlayer app and start watching outside the UK.

For iOS Users (iPhone and iPad)

  1. Go to “Settings” on your iOS device and then click on your Apple ID profile.
  2. Now tap on the “Media and Purchases” option > select “Country/Region” > tap “Change Country or Region” > select “United Kingdom” and then on the “Terms and Conditions” page tap “Agree.”
  3. Now enter all the required details, and for the UK locations, you can provide any address and number from the internet since Apple does not verify it.
  4. Once your region change to the UK, head to App Store and search for the BBC iPlayer app.
  5. Now download the app and start watching BBC outside the UK.

What BBC iPlayer Shows to Must Watch Outside the UK

Here’s a list of all the different BBC Channels and shows you can watch on this service:

  • Strike
  • The Missing
  • Death in Paradise
  • The Serpent
  • Fleabag
  • Cuckoo
  • Doctor Who
  • The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air
  • Peaky Blinders
  • Inside No. 9
  • Luther
  • Killing Eve
  • Fleabag
  • The Cry
  • The Salisbury Poisonings
  • Great British Bakeoff
  • The Nest

BBC iPlayer Showing Geo-blocked Error Outside the UK- Troubleshooting Tips

Sometimes, you may face geographical restrictions even though the VPN is enabled.

At times like these, you are advised to perform the following troubleshooting tips:

  1. Clean your browser’s cache, cookies, and history, then try again.
  2. Disable your phone’s GPS or location service.
  3. Switch to a different VPN server.
  4. Get in touch with your VPN provider’s customer support team.


Yes, you can watch BBC iPlayer outside the UK for free. The streaming service doesn’t require any premium subscription but it does need you to register for an account.

Watching BBC iPlayer Outside the UK is only possible through a VPN that is not illegal by any means. However, to follow the geo-blocking policies and content copyrights agreements, the BBC does not favour using a VPN to access their streaming service outside the UK.

Yes, you can watch iPlayer without a VPN. Popular unblocking tools such as proxy extensions and Smart DNS features are alternatives to a VPN for watching BBC iPlayer outside the UK.

Wrapping It Up!

With one of the above-mentioned VPNs and steps, now you can easily watch BBC iPlayer outside UK.

While all the listed VPN providers are fully capable of granting you access to BBC iPlayer, if we had to pick the most reliable, optimized, fast, and efficient VPN for the job, it would be ExpressVPN.

Preston Nolan

Preston is a lively person who is always excited for traveling and discovering new things. He is a seasoned content writer for entertainment industry. Whether it's an event or release of a new movie he keeps himself updated with new trends and affairs of the glamour world.

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