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If you’re saving some bucks this month but still desire to watch BBC iPlayer, then fret not, this guide is meant for you. Instead of some budget-friendly options, we’re going to list down every Virtual Private Network that you can use for free to unblock BBC iPlayer in your country.

BBC iPlayer is, unfortunately, locked due to geo-restrictions in the world except for the UK, where the iPlayer is based itself. This means that you will require a UK IP address to stream this popular service on your device.

BBC iPlayer offers some amazing binge-worthy content for users to watch. From Doctor Who to Peaky Blinders, you can stream anything you like. But, there’s a catch. Free VPNs aren’t as safe as they claim to be and there are plenty of risks attached to them.

Why are free VPNs for BBC iPlayer risky to use?

Free VPNs have a certain set of limitations which include their inability to unblock geo-restricted content. Let’s look more into the risks that free VPNs pose:

  • Collect user data and sell it to third party advertisers.
  • Offer a few servers and below-average speeds.
  • May collect logs and leak IPs.
  • Offer limited data to users.

Paid VPNs are the complete opposite of free VPNs. While the goals are the same, they both offer completely different services. Paid VPNs offer unlimited data and thousands of servers for users to choose from. These VPNs are efficient in unblocking geo-restricted websites and streaming services like Netflix. With the best security features, paid VPNs are easy to trust and more reliable than free VPNs.

As mentioned above, paid VPNs are a way better solution to unblock and watch BBC iPlayer. Before we get back to free VPNs, let’s look at the best paid VPNs and what they offer:

1. ExpressVPN – Top choice for streaming BBC iPlayer:

ExpressVPN is highly recommended for BBC iPlayer. This VPN offers top-notch security features, 3000+ servers, unlimited data, and efficient 24/7 live chat support to all users. It also offers a risk-free 30-day money-back guarantee and a 3-month free subscription on its 12-month plan for users to enjoy BBC iPlayer without any hassle.

2. Surfshark – Easy-to-use VPN for BBC iPlayer:

Surfshark is a multi-device VPN that offers a highly encrypted connection with its AES 256-bit encryption protocol. This VPN offers 3200+ servers globally and unlimited simultaneous connections on a single Surfshark account. You can avail Surfshark’s discounted 2-year plan any time to unblock and watch BBC iPlayer anytime.

3. NordVPN – Reliable VPN for BBC iPlayer:

NordVPN is another top service that offers over 5500 speedy servers for users to enjoy BBC iPlayer without any lags. To use its ultimate security features, you can subscribe to NordVPN’s discounted 2-year plan.

But first, let me give you an overview of the best free VPNs for BBC iPlayer:

1. Windscribe – An all-rounder for BBC iPlayer

2. Tunnelbear – A reliable free VPN for BBC iPlayer

3. Speedify – Speediest VPN to unblock BBC iPlayer

What aspects did we look for when selecting the best free VPN for BBC iPlayer?

When choosing the best free VPNs, we tested the VPNs according to the following criteria:

1. Servers:

The best VPN for BBC iPlayer should offer servers in the UK to unblock this UK-based streaming service. And not just one server; it should offer multiple servers so you face no traffic overload and can easily stream BBC iPlayer. This is what we checked when we listed the VPN above.

2. Speed: 

Speed is one crucial factor when looking for the best free VPN for BBC iPlayer. We conducted speed tests of all the popular UK servers of the VPNs mentioned in this guide. These VPNs offered good speeds on their UK servers, and the BBC iPlayer did not buffer when we tested them together.

3. Compatibility with devices:

We made sure that the VPNs are compatible with all popular devices, so you have multiple choices to stream BBC iPlayer on. You can connect these VPNs to Android, iPhone/iPad, Mac, Windows, Smart TVs, etc., to stream BBC iPlayer.

What are the best free VPNs for BBC iPlayer?

The best free VPNs to unblock BBC iPlayer in any country are:

1. Windscribe – An all-rounder for BBC iPlayer:



Servers: 2 free in the UK

Unblocks geo-restricted services: Yes

Customer support: Offers a live chat support

Windscribe is an all-rounder free VPN offering two servers in the UK for users to unblock BBC iPlayer.

This VPN offers free data of 10GB/mo, which would restrict your BBC iPlayer binging idea but will allow you to stream around six movies in Standard Definition (SD). But to make it more fun, you can unlock free data of 5GB only by tweeting about Windscribe. Sounds cool, right?

While this sounds completely irrelevant to mention right now, but Windscribe also offers P2P optimized servers for torrenting.

This VPN offers decent speeds and can bypass geo-restrictions through its robust security features. Just ask your queries at its live chat, and they’ll provide you with an effective customer support service.

Why is Windscribe the best: Winscribe is an ad-free VPN service that can unblock BBC iPlayer with its UK servers and offer decent speeds to users even with a data cap.

2. Tunnelbear – A reliable free VPN for BBC iPlayer



Servers: Multiple servers in the world and the UK

Unblocks geo-restricted services: Yes

Customer support: Yes

Tunnelbear’s free service is an amazing one to use for BBC iPlayer. While this service offers servers in the UK and other major countries like the US, Canada, etc., its service comes with a data cap.

This means that Tunnelbear offers most of its security features for streaming at a limit of 500 Mb/mo. This data limit only lets you stream BBC iPlayer for around 30-40 minutes, which is relatively less. This data limit is plain sad, even for occasional binge-watchers out there.

But if you want to test the service and later opt for a paid version, then this free version of Tunnelbear is the right deal for you. Remain unidentified over the internet and make the most of BBC iPlayer with Tunnelbear’s services.

Why is Tunnelbear the best: Good and reliable features with servers proven to unblock BBC iPlayer. You can enjoy its free version and opt for the most affordable plan when you’re ready.

3. Speedify – Speediest VPN to unblock BBC iPlayer:



Servers: 430+ globally, 6 in the UK

Unblocks geo-restricted services: Yes

Customer support: Offered.

One VPN that offers six super-fast UK servers is Speedify and over 430 servers in the world for you to enjoy BBC iPlayer along with other popular streaming services.

This VPN offers a data limit of 2GB/mo, which might let you stream BBC iPlayer for around three hours. It might sound less to you, but at least we have something on the plate.

Speedify prioritizes offering a speedy connection to users like its name already suggests and offers encryption protocols like AES 128-GSM for all latest devices and ChaCha for the older ones.

This VPN service lets users effectively unblock all streaming services on many significant devices. You can watch Netflix using Speedify, too, if you want. It also keeps no logs and ensures that your IP address is entirely masked.

Why is Speedify the best: A better data limit than most free versions of VPNs out there. It offers no-logs, torrenting, and keeps you secure. It also lets you bypass geo-restrictions easily.

While these free VPNs work effectively for BBC iPlayer, you can also use them to access other streaming services:

Get free VPNs for these streaming services:

How do I get BBC iPlayer to work with a VPN?

Here’s how you can get BBC iPlayer and watch it on your device:

1. Sign up for your chosen free VPN (We highly recommend ExpressVPN).

2.Download it on your device and launch the app.

3. Select a UK server and connect to it.

Selecting ExpressVPN UK server for BBC

4. After you know you’re connected, visit BBC iPlayer’s website. 


5. Choose your favorite show to binge and enjoy!

How do free VPNs limit you?

Free VPNs do come with certain limitations as they’re free. They are:

1. Free VPNs offer limited servers in their free version, while the paid versions offer a wide range. Less number of servers automatically leads to extra traffic on them, further leading to slow streaming.

2. Free VPNs are not compatible with all devices. You might be able to connect your free VPN to your Android phone or your Mac, but when it comes to Fire Stick or Nvidia Shield, a compatible application might not be offered.

3. Trusting a free VPN is one significant risk a user takes. Even though these VPNs claim to be harmless, can one be sure that someone might offer you a service without collecting anything in return? Sounds fishy to me.

4. Geo-restrictions are not easy to bypass. Many free VPNs find it extremely hard to get past those, not because they can’t, but because streaming services can detect VPN servers. Limited servers lead to multiple people connecting to one service through a single IP that can make the service suspicious and lead it to block you from watching anything on the service. Premium VPNs are also recommended for streamers in China looking for ways to get BBC iPlayer in China.

You can only expect limited services from them even though they promise you many impressive services and features. And, I guess I’ve mentioned enough reasons for you to understand that a paid VPN is always a better and safer choice to get around geo-restrictions and finding your way into a streaming service that isn’t available in your country.

What VPNs do not work with BBC iPlayer?

We tested many VPNs and their UK servers to know if they can unblock BBC iPlayer or not. The VPNs that don’t unblock BBC iPlayer are:

1. IPVanish:

IPVanish was ruled out as one of the VPNs that don’t work for BBC iPlayer during our testing. While this VPN offers a good range of servers and fast speeds, it’s still a question why it was unable to unblock this popular streaming service.

2. Private Internet Access (PIA):

While we suggest PIA for unblocking Netflix’s geo-restricted libraries, it’s pretty useless for BBC iPlayer. None of its UK servers could unblock BBC iPlayer for us.

What’s good on iPlayer at the moment?

Some popular TV shows you can watch on BBC iPlayer are:

  1. The Victim
  2. Doctor Who
  3. Our Girl
  4. Merlin
  5. EastEnders
  6. Killing Eve
  7. Normal People
  8. The Nest
  9. The Graham Norton Show
  10. Ghosts
  11. Heroes
  12. Harlots
  13. Planet Earth
  14. A Suitable Boy
  15. Atlanta


Why is my BBC iPlayer not working?

Here are some troubleshooting tips to solve your BBC iPlayer not working problem:

  1. Switch to an alternate UK server to watch BBC iPlayer.
  2. Refresh your internet connection.
  3. Update your VPN app.

Can a free proxy be used to unblock BBC iPlayer?

We don’t think so. Free proxies are easy to detect, and you’re likely to get blocked from BBC iPlayer if you use them. Streaming services like BBC iPlayer can detect proxies and VPNs easily. Therefore, you need the best VPN with many UK servers to access BBC iPlayer.

How does iPlayer detect VPN?

VPNs offer limited servers in the UK to users. When hundreds of users worldwide connect to one server and unblock the BBC iPlayer, iPlayer’s technology immediately detects it as a VPN and blocks the IP address. BBC iPlayer’s geo-restrictions are challenging to bypass and can only be done using premium VPN features.


Our guide to using a VPN to access and enjoy BBC iPlayer is now ending. BBC iPlayer is the best streaming service in the UK. Maybe that’s the reason it’s geo-restricted. They must’ve wanted to keep the service to themselves instead of sharing it with the world.

But to access this service from anywhere in the world, use a VPN. If you’re unconvinced about a free VPN, then we highly recommend you choose the best VPN for BBC iPlayer while spending some cash to enjoy its services.

Paid VPNs are better in terms of security anyway. For example, paid VPNs offer secure HTTPS browsing, while free VPNs may or may not offer it. We highly recommend ExpressVPN for BBC iPlayer. You can subscribe to its risk-free 30-day refund policy or opt for its 3-month free subscription on its annual plan.

But in case free VPNs are really your deal, then just use our guide for the best free VPN for BBC iPlayer.