BBC iPlayer is a free online streaming service that users in the UK can use to watch TV shows and programs. Unfortunately, the geographical availability of the service is only confined to the UK.
You can make iPlayer globally available through the best VPN for BBC iPlayer. If you are unsure about which VPNs are capable of bypassing geo-restrictions and grant you access to the iPlayer from anywhere in the world, read on below to find out!
Why You Need a VPN on BBC iPlayer?
There are numerous places to watch best shows from UK, but nothing beats the BBC iPlayer. Its illustrious content library extends deep into popular TV shows, movies, cartoons, sports, and much more
Unfortunately, the iPlayer app is not your run of the mill media streaming service – it has a fine print. Due to copyright agreements, content on iPlayer is only accessible from the UK.
This means that you will only be able to access the service if you have a UK IP address. Otherwise, you will receive the following error:
You might be wondering that this is a hopeless cause if you are living abroad, but you couldn’t be more wrong!
Because VPN services can give you IP address from anywhere in the world with a single click. VPNs operate a multitude of servers located across various countries that you users can connect to.
By doing so, your visible IP address on the Internet will turn to an IP from that country, giving you access to the Internet as a local resident from that location would experience.
So, you can use a VPN to acquire a UK IP and unblock iPlayer irrespective of what your actual location is.
5 Best BBC iPlayer VPNs in 2018
Watch BBC iPlayer Outside UK with the top 5 VPN services described as follows.
To watch the famous BBC player at your desired location, you need to juggle your IP address – something a VPN does by nature. Now, when it comes to selecting a VPN for iPlayer, make sure that it offers servers in the UK.
The same goes for PrimeWire since you can attain your unblocked objective with a VPN. Here are some of the best VPN services for accessing iPlayer content from anywhere:
|Rank||Providers||Price ($)||Discount||More Info|
| 88% Off |
5 Years for $1.32/month
| 75% Off |
3 Years Plan
| 83% Off |
2 Years Deal
| 73% Off |
6 months Free
| 35% OFF |
No Exclusive Offer
1. PureVPN – The Fastest VPN App for Media Streaming
PureVPN outshines a large number of VPN providers available in the market. With a wide range of servers spread across the UK, PureVPN is a highly recommended VPN to watch BBC iPlayer abroad.
It allows access to iPlayer from anywhere in the world. At the moment, the service offers servers in the Manchester, Leicester, Maidenhead and Gosport. Subscribers can freely connect to one of these locations and stream iPlayer on Android, iOS, Mac or Windows devices.
- Offers Internet Kill Switch and Nat Firewall
- Up to 5 multiple logins
- Accepts anonymous payments (Bitcoin, PayPal and much more)
- Transparent zero activity log policy
- The service does not offer free trial
Also, PureVPN servers support PPTP, L2TP/IPSec, SSTP protocols, ensuring elite streaming experience to on-demand entertainment enthusiasts.
Fortunately, you can access your desired streaming service even if you live outside the UK. This is because PureVPN offers 56 dedicated UK servers for better iPlayer streaming outside United Kingdom. You are just one click away from watching tons of unlimited entertainment instantly.
PureVPN Not Working Solution
If you are facing issues while using PureVPN to unblock iPlayer app outside the UK, you should connect to another UK server. PureVPN offers a comprehensive list of UK servers to its subscribers. Therefore, you can select any UK server of your choice to continue enjoying the BBC media coverage through iPlayer.
2. NordVPN – The Instant Unblocker
NordVPN is an excellent iPlayer unblocker. With an extensive range of features, NordVPN for iPlayer keeps users’ identity secure while offering one-touch access to BBC iPlayer from abroad.
NordVPN offers 578 servers in the UK alone. Also, a three-day trial offered by Nord allows subscribers to take a test drive service before final subscription. This is why the VPN is definitely worth considering if you want to access iPlayer from broad.
For further details, view our NordVPN Review guide of 2018.
- The provider is based at Panama
- The service has more than 5,000 servers
- Six simultaneous connections
- Allows P2P
- The users may experience connectivity issues during peak hours
Surfshark is a British Virgin Islands based provider that has recently made entry into the VPN industry. Do not be fooled, however, because the service is already performing extremely well in terms of both security and ability to bypass geo-restrictions.
With Surfshark, you can easily gain access to BBC iPlayer by connecting to one of its UK servers. The user-friendly logging policy ensures that you can do so without the knowledge of your ISP.
You can find out more about this service in our latest Surfshark review.
- Allows unlimited simultaneous connections
- Uses AES 256 encryption
- No-logging policy
- Unblocks BBC iPlayer, Netflix, and other streaming services
- No dedicated apps for Linux and Mac
CyberGhost sets itself apart from other VPNs by its ability to unblock streaming sites with ease. This is a VPN service that has improved considerably over time in terms of features offered and speed. It has over 3,000 servers worldwide with almost 350 of them located in the UK and offers dedicated servers for unblocking BBC iPlayer.
To learn more about the service, check out our CyberGhost review.
- BBC iPlayer dedicated servers
- Up to 7 multi-logins allowed simultaneously
- Supports torrenting
- Based in Romania (privacy-friendly region)
- Limited security features
5. ExpressVPN – Multiple Servers in the UK to Access iPlayer
ExpressVPN is a pioneer in VPN industry. Although Express doesn’t offer dedicated IP address, it provides instant access to iPlayer live streaming to the fans around the world. The fast speeds and stable server infrastructure allows for a seamless streaming experience no matter where you are in the world.
For further details, view our ExpressVPN Review guide of 2018.
- Unblocks BBC iPlayer
- Fast server speeds
- More than 2,000 servers all over the world
- Users have to deal with the higher pricing plans
Following are some more advantages about using Express VPN for iPlayer.
• Available across multiple platforms
• Offers L2TP/IPSec, PPTP, OpenVPN and SSTP
• Up to 3 simultaneous connections
• 24/7 live tech support
ExpressVPN provides its servers in the UK that allow the BBC iPlayer fans to enjoy the service outside the UK. Thus, you can connect to any UK server of your choice to start watching your favorite TV show from anywhere straightaway.
ExpressVPN Not Working Solution
If you are facing the Express VPN not working on your devices, you should not worry. Try a different UK server and then open BBC iPlayer again. If that still doesn’t work, you can play around with protocol settings.
Change protocol to SSTP or PPTP and try accessing BBC iPlayer. This should work in most cases. If not, contact customer support for assistance.
How to Choose the Right VPN for BBC iPlayer?
While choosing a VPN service many factors have to be taken into account. These are:
- Number of servers
- Protection of personal data
- Encryption protocols
VPNs that do not work with BBC iPlayer
As per the tests we conducted, the following VPN providers do not were not able to unblock BBC iPlayer:
- Private Internet Access (PIA)
Even though the above mentioned providers may not be able to unblock BBC iPlayer for you but they may prove to be very beneficial for other online activities.
What if you don’t have a UK TV License?
Luckily the BBC iPlayer works on the honor system, which means it will only ask if you have a TV license rather than actually verifying if you actually do have one. However, you do need to provide a valid UK post code, which again is not verified.
What to Do If Your VPN Stops Working?
One thing that you can consider doing is getting a dedicated VPN IP address. For the IPlayer, which should be in the UK.
A dedicated IP address means you will no longer be sharing one with hundreds of other people, meaning better performance as well.
While BBC is trying its best to block VPNs, there are some that still work, try different services. Once you choose the right service and understand how to use it, then watching the BBC iPlayer over a VPN works smoothly.
However, it is also possible that the problem is not with your VPN but with your Internet connection. If you are trying to access it with Wi-Fi, connect to the Internet with Ethernet cable and try watching streams on the iPlayer again.
Another problem could be that you are using an outdated iPlayer app. If that is the case, download the updated BBC iPlayer from the following links:
You can check if there are pending updates which you have not followed through for your BBC iPlayer apps.
This is how:
- Android Devices – Settings > About Device > Software Update
- iOS Devices – Settings > General > Software Update
If the BBC iPlayer continues to give you problems, check out more tips and tricks on our blog BBC iPlayer not working through VPN?
How to Watch iPlayer on Android?
To start with, you will first need to subscribe to and download a VPN service on your Android device. Follow the steps below to get one and access the large variety of shows available on the iPlayer:
- Download and Install a VPN service of your choice from the Play Store
- Open the app and sign up to subscribe
- After successfully subscribing, enter your login details in the app
- Now connect to a UK VPN server
- Minimize the app and gain access to iPlayer without restrictions
Just make sure you’re on your Wi-Fi, or you’ll be using up your mobile data pretty fast.
How to Watch iPlayer on iPhone/iOS?
Getting access to iPlayer through on iOS from outside the UK is a little trickier. This is because the iOS does not allow the use of any DNS other than the original one associated with the user.
As such, even if you turn on a VPN on iOS, you still won’t be able to access iPlayer because your DNS still belongs to your actual location. To get British streaming service working, you will need to access iPlayer through a Chrome using VPN extensions for the browser.
A Chrome VPN extension will only allow you to bypass geo-restrictions on site if you visit them through Chrome. So if you find yourself unable to watch streams through iPlayer app on iOS, try using a Chrome VPN and visiting the BBC iPlayer website through it.
How to Watch iPlayer on Chromecast?
Chromecast is a small media streaming device similar to Amazon Fire TV and Roku. Chromecast can be used to view videos on a TV, computer, or smartphone.
If you want to stream shows through Chromecast via your PC, follow these steps:
- Connect your PC to the same Wi-Fi as your Chromecast
- Open Chrome on your PC while having Chromecast extension installed on it
- Visit BBC iPlayer official site and play the recorded stream of any show of your choice
- Click “Cast” (The TV icon) on the control bar
- Watch the stream on your TV
Make sure that you have a VPN running in the background or you won’t be able to access iPlayer from abroad.
- Ensure the Chromecast and Smartphone are connected to the same Wi-Fi
- Launch a VPN service
- Open the BBC iPlayer app and wait for it to detect Chromecast
- When the icon turns blue, select a show of your choice
- Watch stream on the TV the Chromecast is plugged into
How to Access iPlayer from Abroad Straightaway?
Once you have chosen a VPN service, you are all set to watch your favorite BBC shows on iPlayer. Here is a step by step guide to help you out.
*NOTE: We used PureVPN as an iPlayer VPN for our demonstration as it offers multiple servers in the UK.
• Launch PureVPN application or any other VPN software on your chosen device
- Connect to a server located in the UK
- After successful connection, you should get an UK based IP address
- Now, launch iPlayer and access your favorite show. You will be shown the following prompt, just select ‘I have a TV License’ and you’re good to go
- Enjoy unlimited streaming on BBC iPlayer outside UK
TV Shows Available on BBC iPlayer Until November 2018
Until November 1st
The Bank That Almost Broke Britain
Until November 3rd
Drowning in Plastic
Until November 11th
Beats, Bass and Bars – The Story of Grime
Until November 13th
Until November 17th
Our Girl: Season 1 to 3
Until November 18th
Black Hollywood: “They’ve Gotta Have Us”
Until November 20th
Feud: Bette and Joan
Until November 25th
Bowie at Glastonbury
The Mash Report
Until November 27th
Inside No. 9 Live: Dead Line
Until November 28th
Black Earth Rising
Movies Available Until November 2018
Until November 3rd
The Curse of the Were-Rabbit
Until November 4th
Until November 5th
Until November 13th
Until November 21st
A Woman Captured
Until November 27th
VPNs and iPlayer: an Ongoing Battle
British Broadcasting Corporation iPlayer is following the footsteps of other popular streaming services such as Netflix and Hulu and has tried blocking VPN users. A VPN allows you to bypass geo-restrictions and access content from any region you want. However, BBC doesn’t want anyone outside the UK to access its content available on iPlayer.
That said, their attempts to block VPN users has not been successful so far. All the VPN providers we have mentioned in this post are working perfectly to unblock iPlayer content. We tested each provider, and its UK servers have positively responded in accessing the streaming service.
BBC iPlayer Ban on VPN (iPlayer App Detecting VPN)
VPN services are blocked by several media streaming sites, including iPlayer. As a result, on some occasions, users are unable to access BBC iPlayer even through a VPN.
However, it is only those VPNs that use weak and outdated protocols that are detected by iPlayer and subsequently banned. Leading premium services have the resources to maintain server functionality and use obfuscation technology to pass through BBC iPlayer without getting banned by the service.
This means that you should carefully select a VPN that performs reliably well when it comes to accessing BBC iPlayer. Consult the list of VPNs provided above to ensure you choose the right VPN.
How to Evade VPN Detection by BBC iPlayer?
The BBC iPlayer suspects that a VPN is being used if too many users visit the website from the same server using shared IP addresses. In response, the service bans the servers associated with the VPN, leaving users deserted at the gates of the iPlayer.
If your VPN has been blocked by BBC, you can try the following steps:
One of the first things you should do if your VPN has been blocked from iPlayer is to switch servers. However, to be able to do that, having a VPN with multiple UK servers is the prerequisite. If you a VPN like ExpressVPN or NordVPN, you can easily switch between servers within the UK and gain access to iPlayer.
Use Dedicated IPs
A dedicated VPN IP is assigned to only one user. The suspicion alarms of iPlayer are raised when it detects various users trying to gain access with the same or similar IPs. You can totally forget about that happening by using a dedicated IP VPN.
How a VPN Helps to Enjoy iPlayer Streaming After Unblocking?
I’ve reviewed a number of streaming websites, and the BBC iPlayer is one of the best streaming services there is. However, you will need a good bandwidth to stream content on iPlayer.
The website is bandwidth intensive and chooses to take the high road by refusing to stream for you if you are not equipped with the bandwidth to adequately stream and enjoy the content.
There are two ways to go about if you fear running into this notification:
Option A – Ask your Internet Service Provider to upgrade your package
The old-school technique is to upgrade to a heavier and more expensive subscription. Clarify to your Internet Service Provider that the reason behind your shift in a plan is to stream frequently. Your internet service provider may have some tips to help you boost internet speed without experiencing heavy additional costs.
Option B – Choose an iPlayer VPN service that facilitates streaming fanatics
VPN service providers know that subjecting data traffic to the whole encrypt-tunnel-decrypt process can have a bit of a drag on speed/bandwidth. That is why most VPN services for iPlayer choose to go the extra mile for streaming fanatics by providing add-ons – some for free, and others at low cost.
Boosting Stream Quality for iPlayer
You can use various add-ons offered by a VPN to enhance your streaming experience. Below listed additional features will allow you to watch iPlayer content outside UK without compromising streaming quality.
A feature rapidly gaining popularity amongst the streaming-addicted VPN community is split-tunneling. This feature allows users to control only their streaming traffic to pass through the VPN while other data travels through regular Internet. The upshot is that the VPN bandwidth is saved for streaming, enabling better performance.
2. Speed Boost
Some VPN service providers offer low-cost high-impact speed boosts. These speed boosts will pump up your speed significantly and allow you to watch BBC iPlayer outside the UK without ever experiencing the discomfort of buffering lag.
3. BBC iPlayer Dedicated Servers
Some VPNs have servers specifically reserved for streaming on BBC iPlayer. These servers deliver great performance, since they are optimized for iPlayer. CyberGhost and ExressVPN are examples of providers that offer dedicated servers for BBC iPlayer.
Accessing BBCiPlayer with a Proxy?
There are various proxy websites that you can find by a single search through Google. However, most of these are insecure and are simply unable to pass the iPlayer website. Those that can bypass the block deliver poor performance with constant buffering and low quality.
Therefore, I don’t recommend using a proxy for accessing BBC iPlayer.
VPN for BBC iPlayer – Reddit Reviews
Reddit is one of the most popular interactive platforms that allow the users to get awareness about different stuff instantly. Fortunately, iPlayer has a huge fan following on Reddit that suggests the online streaming has grabbed the attention of the users worldwide. Still, the Reddit users differentiate between the iPlayer VPN and Reddit VPN to determine which one works best for them.
Here is the response of one Redditor indicating that he has been able to access blocked sites with a UK VPN:
Another user discusses how BBC iPlayer manages to block IP addresses:
One Reddit user recommends NordVPN particularly for unblocking iPlayer:
Popular Available Channels on BBC iPlayer
BBC iPlayer offers various channels for British users to enjoy. You can switch through these channels at your leisure, provided you have UK IP, which can be obtained with a VPN.
Here are some of the most popular channels on BBC iPlayer:
- BBC One
- BBC Two
- BBC Three
- BBC Four
- BBC Radio
- BBC News
- BBC Alba
- BBC Parliament
Popular Alternatives for BBC iPlayer
Although BBC iPlayer is a great streaming service, it only has content from the UK, which limits the choice users have for the shows they can view. If you have gotten bored with BBC iPlayer, you can check out the following alternatives to access much wider libraries of video content:
- Amazon Prime
- PlayStation Vue
However, most of these services are subscription-based, unlike BBC iPlayer which is completely free!
Can You Get BBC iPlayer in Ireland?
Being located just a few miles away from British mainland, the Irish people cannot access the stream of BBC-iPlayer from within Ireland. With that said, various fans from Dublin have inquired on the internet about a suitable solution to stream the iPlayer app abroad.
Considering the imposed geo-restrictions on iPlayer, a VPN for BBC iPlayer is the perfect solution to achieve one-click access to the stream including exclusive shows, movies and great media from within Ireland and other countries.
Yes, BBC iPlayer is completely free.
Not if you directly try to access it. You will need a VPN to first obtain a UK IP address and then you can access it from the US.
These are some of the popular VPNs that work with iPlayer
Best VPN for BBC iPlayer: Conclusion
BBC iPlayer is a brilliant media streaming service for the UK, especially since it is available for free. It is a shame that users outside the UK are barred from accessing this great service. Thanks to the VPN, as you can unblock iPlayer and all your desired channels in any region just with a single click and entertain yourself to no end.