Stream US Television

How To Watch American TV Shows Overseas

Last updated on October 19, 2020 Comments: 47

If you are an American that travels on a regular basis, you will be aware as to how hard it is to tune into your favorite US channels while in another country. American ex-pats will also know that due to regional restrictions, most US TV channels that are easy to access in the US are unavailable in other areas of the globe. Living overseas can be incredibly exciting, but at the end of a busy day, one of the biggest comforts is the ability to watch American TV overseas.

Want to know how to watch American TV abroad online? A high-quality VPN is your best solution. Keep reading to find out more.

Why Can’t You Watch US TV Shows Overseas?

Due to geo-restrictions, most US TV shows and channels like ABC, CBS, TNT, Fox, and Hulu are inaccessible to overseas users. Basically, your IP address gives away your location acting as a digital fingerprint. How? An IP address has a fixed location and will communicate which country you’re in currently to the website that you’re trying to access.

Your favorite TV shows are unavailable overseas due to copyright and licensing laws. So, even if you are a US citizen that has purchased a TV subscription, you won’t be able to tune in, because your IP address will expose your location.

Annoying, isn’t it? It’s not all bad news though. With a VPN, you can watch American TV overseas in no time.

Use a VPN to Watch American TV Abroad

A VPN is your best friend if you wish to watch American TV overseas. This is because it reroutes your online connection through to another server in the country of your choice, therefore masking your IP address. Basically, you can be sitting in Sweden and it will appear as though you’re on your couch at home in New York.

In our experience, the most effective VPN for watching US TV online from anywhere in the globe. It gets around the toughest restrictions and is so fast, you won’t even notice you’re using one.

You can use ExpressVPN on as many as five devices which should have you covered to watch American TV overseas on the go, and it even works in China.  Remember that if you do wish to use it in China, you should download the app prior to going.

Here’s How to Watch US TV from abroad with ExpressVPN

Getting the right VPN is imperative for being able to easily watch American TV from anywhere.

We highly recommend ExpressVPN as the all-around best VPN for streaming US TV, as it boasts the fastest speeds which will keep your streaming experience buffer-free. It’s as simple as signing up for an account on the ExpressVPN website, installing the appropriate app on your computer, and any other devices you plan on using.

The following instructions will allow you to start watching American TV ASAP:

  1. Open up ExpressVPN and click on the three dots by the country name.
  2. As soon as that opens you should see a list of countries, the US is one of them.
  3. Click on the US to get the fastest server available.
  4. Alternatively, you can also select the arrow by the United States to view a list of cities that you can choose from.
  5. Hit the power button and connect to your selected US server.
  6. Launch your browser and lookup your streaming platform of choice. In most cases, it should work instantly. However, some US services, such as NBC, will require you to enter additional details (such as US satellite or cable supplier) before you can connect.

Best VPN Providers to Watch American TV Overseas

#1 ExpressVPN – The best all-round VPN service for watching American TV overseas

Streaming Services Unblocked: Netflix, Hulu, Sling TV, HBO, DAZN, Amazon Prime Video, BBC iPlayer, Disney+, ITV Player, ESPN, YouTube TV, Fubo, beIN Sports, Sky Go, Vudu, Showtime, Hotstar, Crackle, Zattoo, Quibi, Direct TV Now

Platforms Supported: Mac, Windows, iOS, Android, Linux, routers, Chrome extension, Firefox extension | Compatible Devices: Chromecast, Apple TV, PlayStation, Amazon Fire TV, Android TV, Roku, Xbox | Number of Servers: 3,000+ | Server Locations: 160 | Maximum Devices Supported: 5  | Trial Period: 30 days | 24/7 Live Chat Support: Yes

While many VPN service providers claim to be able to get around geo-blocks, the truth is, only a handful can. With so many hit and miss options out there, ExpressVPN seriously stands out from the pack in terms of circumventing those blocks.

Not only that, but it is also compatible with a vast number of devices. There are apps available for Windows, macOS, iOS, Android, Linux, Kindle Fire, and more. While most VPNs work only with selected TVs, ExpressVPN covers Samsung smart TVs, Apple TVs, Amazon Fire TVs, Roku, Google Chromecast, and Android smart TVs.

When watching American TV overseas, using a VPN can slow your connection down by as much as 70%, but this isn’t the case with ExpressVPN, as it comes with a 99.9% uptime guarantee.

ExpressVPN also offers a special deal, get 3 months free and 49% savings with their annual subscription plan!

With headquarters in the British Virgin Islands, you can be sure that your online privacy will never be compromised.  You can learn more about ExpressVPN in our expert review.

Visit ExpressVPN

#2 NordVPN – Best for security and number of servers available

Streaming Services Unblocked: Netflix, Hulu, Sling TV, HBO, DAZN, Amazon Prime Video, BBC iPlayer, Disney+, ITV Player, ESPN, YouTube TV, Fubo, beIN Sports, Sky Go, and more

Platforms Supported: Mac, Windows, iOS, Android, Linux, routers, Chrome, Firefox | Compatible Devices: Chromecast, Apple TV, PlayStation, Amazon Fire TV, Roku, Xbox | Number of Servers: 5,000+ | Server Locations: 80+ | Maximum Devices Supported: 6 | Trial Period: 30 days | 24/7 Live Chat Support: Yes

NordVPN is our second choice for streaming American TV overseas as it comes with excellent streaming speeds as well as strong unblocking capabilities. Not only can you watch your favorite channels, but you can also unblock various streaming platforms like Netflix and Hulu.

Based in Panama, NordVPN offers users military-grade encryption as well as a range of powerful security protocols. With protection against DNS leaks IPv6, WebRTC, NordVPN also comes with a dual-VPN feature, automatic ad-blocker, application-specific kill switch, and a malware scanner. There is also the ability to contact customer service any time of the day (or night), via the 24-hour online chat platform. Find out more about NordVPN in our detailed review.

Visit NordVPN

#3 Surfshark – Best for its unlimited simultaneous connections available

Streaming Services Unblocked: Netflix, Hulu, Sling TV, HBO, DAZN, Amazon Prime Video, BBC iPlayer, Disney+, ITV Player, ESPN, YouTube TV, Fubo, beIN Sports, and more

Platforms Supported: Mac, Windows, iOS, Android, Linux, routers, Chrome, Firefox | Compatible Devices: Chromecast, Apple TV, PlayStation, Amazon Fire TV, Roku, Xbox, Chrome, Firefox | Number of Servers: 1,700+ | Server Locations: 100 | Maximum Devices Supported: Unlimited Trial Period: 30 days | 24/7 Live Chat Support: Yes

Although not on the market as long as ExpressVPN or NordVPN, Surfshark has surprisingly fast speeds and can get around regional blocks set in place by major TV channels and streaming services like Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, and Hulu. The best part is that Surfshark has no connection limit meaning that you can safely browse and stream on every single device you own.

In terms of privacy, there is 256-bit encryption – the strongest and most secure encryption available at the moment. There is also a kill switch, traffic scrambling, and DNS leak protection. If you prefer to stay anonymous online, you can sign up using a burner email address and pay for your subscription with cryptocurrency. For any technical problems that might arise, there is always round the clock live chat support available. More about Surfshark, in our detailed review.

Visit Surfshark

Conclusion

Many people going overseas for the first time are shocked to find out that even though they might have subscriptions to their favorite TV channels, are unable to watch them when outside of the US.

This can be especially tough for those starting working or living overseas, as it can be a source of comfort watching familiar content from home. This is because US TV networks and streaming services restrict people from viewing TV shows and movies if they’re located outside of America.

The good news is that all is not lost. In fact, anyone living in any corner of the globe can tune into their favorite US shows with a VPN. This fantastic online tool helps you get around restrictions by tunneling your connection through to a server in the US.

Don’t let local censorship laws hold you back from watching American TV abroad. Invest in a top-notch VPN service like ExpressVPN, sit back, and enjoy the show.

Article comments

47 comments
GT says:

I just received a Nvidia Shield Pro tv device today. I installed Kodi and Express VPN. I work in Saudi and want to make sure that I am able to view Kodi add-ons while there. Are there any settings that I will need to change to get the best performance out of the Express VPN?

Lola Olsen says:

Hi GT,

You can read more about the risks of using Kodi Add-ons while abroad here: https://securethoughts.com/best-kodi-apps/
You should also make sure that your kill switch is turned on, especially while in Saudi Arabia, which will shut you down if anything should go wrong with your VPN while streaming your shows.

Nadia Ross says:

Currently in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Don’t have a laptop only Apple devices. My main tv source is Apple TV. Will a VPN allow me to watch American TV on it specifically Hulu and Disney+?

Lola Olsen says:

Hi Nadia,
You should try subscribing to a VPN service that works on your mobile device. Check out our article here: https://securethoughts.com/best-vpns-iphone-ios-devices/

Dawn says:

I have a vpn but still can’t get access us shows still. Why?

Lola Olsen says:

Hi Dawn,
Which VPN do you have? You can check out our list of tested and approved VPN providers and see if one of these would work better for you: https://securethoughts.com/best-vpn/

Dawn says:

I am in Belize and would like to access US tv shows how do I do this from here?

Lola Olsen says:

Hi Dawn,
Try subscribing from one of the wonderful VPN providers that we’ve tested, here: https://securethoughts.com/best-vpn/. Then, you can use your VPN to jump to a US IP address which will make it look like you’re located in the United States.

Earl says:

i am currently in the USA and I want to start streaming US tv to my home in the Dominican Republic where i live with my family, can i set up the VPN while i am in the US and give the information to my family prior to me returning home and if so will it work while im still in the states ?

Lola Olsen says:

Hi Earl,
You can purchase and set up your VPN from the US, and have your family download the VPN on their own devices at home. They can use your login information and you will be able to stream US TV from DR.

Paul in NYC says:

Hi – I’m going to be in Ireland for the last episode of Game of Thrones…which you can understand I CANNOT miss! The hotel unfortunately doesn’t have HBO (another story). Do you know – Will Express VPN work with iPad or laptop versions of FiOS (Verizon’s TV service) or the HBO app?

Lola Olsen says:

Hi Paul,
ExpressVPN should work with each of these. Good luck!

Jay says:

I am a US Citizen that accepted a professional opportunity in Singapore a year and half years ago, in the beginning, I was using ExpressVPN with great success, I even purchased two ExpressVPN Routers from Flashrouters.com to provide 1 access point for all devices. My main source for watching tv was Apple TV and then using Provider Apps, originally connected through ExpressVPN Router, but that stopped working so I then I programmed my Apple TV using Express VPN instructions, that still does not work for most Apps. I have reached a point of frustration because most apps don’t work anymore. The Apps I was using that ARE NOW BLOCKING ACCESS: ESPN+, Fox Sports Go, NBC Sports, Direct NOW, Starz, Sundance Now, CBS, NBC, A&E, AMC, TBS, TNT.
Is there any way to invest and create my own personal access point from my house in the US. Connect from Singapore to my Personal Home Network in my house US, providing the perception that I am using my Apple TV in my house in the US? Am I being red flagged by the network apps because I am using a VPN service like ExpressVPN with hundreds of thousand users, is it easy for the TV App providers to now detect services like ExpressVPN?
How can I create my own private network tunnel / path to the USA to have access to all my content. I should note I have subscriptions to all these apps through either direct purchase (ESPN+, Direct NOW, Starz, Sundance Now, CBS) or access through my TV Subscription through Directv NOW).
If anyone has any ideas or can direct me to a site / link on creating my own stand-alone system, I would greatly appreciate it!! I need a solid solution long term.

Lola Olsen says:

Hi Jay,
It seems that your problem is coming from your network, and not from the VPN. If you were using a PC, you would be going directly through your browser, giving you full control of your IP address location (which is the only way to locate you). However, when you go through the app store, you now have your Apple ID also giving away your location. Through these multiple location verification points, you are being tracked to your actual location in Singapore.
Hope this helps.

Duane says:

Does this technology – VPN – work while at sea on a cruise ship – especially in Europe or mid Atlantic ocean – using the cruise ships internet? If not do you know of anything that does.

Lola Olsen says:

Hi Duane,
As long as your cruise ship has a strong enough internet connection while out at sea, your VPN should work just fine from anywhere in the world. So that will mostly depend on the ship’s internet strength, rather then the VPN.

Bill M says:

Which of these will work on a Roku streaming device for NFL channel, Amazon Prime and Hulu? I know that I need to configure the router to the vpn. Nordvpn.com said that I would have to watch through my PC and that are having trouble with Amazon and Hulu.

Lola Olsen says:

Hi Bill,
We’d recommend ExpressVPN for streaming NFL, Amazon Prime, and Hulu. You can read more about it here: https://securethoughts.com/express-vpn-review/

John says:

The one thing this article does not address is that many TV providers are getting VPN smart and making it harder and harder to stream live TV. Also, if you are into live sports it is even harder.

Lola Olsen says:

Hi John,

You’re correct in saying that some providers are becoming smart to certain VPNs. The VPNs we list here are still currently working fine with streaming most TV shows while abroad. But, before purchasing, you should always make sure that your VPN works for what you want to stream.

James Byrd says:

I am planning on traveling to Israel, will I be able to use ExpressVPN?

ST Editor says:

Hi, and thank you for your question! One of the best things of any VPN, including ExpressVPN, is that they’re designed to help you remove geographic barriers. VPNs are legal to use in Israel, and there have been no reports of ExpressVPN not working. If you’re planning on keeping up with your favorite US TV shows, then you should definitely keep your subscription and always use your VPN! We hope this helps!

Presley says:

I am a frequent traveller and each time I wish to stream a TV show irrespective of my location, ExpressVPN never disappoints me.
Speed and latency are a deal breaker for many users. So, a top VPN service should never compromise on that part. The overall web browsing experience when connected to ExpressVPN has always been great. I didn’t notice any degradation in browsing speed in comparison to my regular connection.
Also, the availability of 24×7 support through live chat always helps users in need. Netflix and other streaming services too work, which is a must-have for many users travelling overseas like me.

Maurice W. says:

ExpressVPN is the second VPN I’m using. Compared to my previous mediocre VPN, Express, is heaven on earth. It’s really fast and actually quite unbelievable.

Britney says:

I need to know which of these VPN’s DEFINITELY work in Russia. I hear they are getting as strict with blocking VPNs as China and I am getting ready to go there for business soon. I don’t want to get there, find out my VPN doesn’t work and then not be able to download another because the sites are blocked.

Also, are special configurations I need to do to make sure the VPN service works in Russia or is that automatic?

Ilana says:

Hi Britney,
I completely understand your concern, especially with all the bans inflicted lately by Russia and China.
The best thing for you to do is contact the VPN provider of your choice – ExpressVPN, NordVPN, SaferVPN – answer their questions regarding your device (OS, version, IP, etc.) and future location plans and they will be able to answer all your questions very effectively.

Eli says:

VPN is a very good technology by which we can easily watch our favorite shows when we travel from one country to other country.I love to watch few TV Shows and by using vpn i don’t miss these shows.

Janet says:

What is the best option if I’m just going to be abroad for a few months? I want to make sure I won’t miss my Netflix shows but also don’t want to have to make a long term commitment because I won’t need a VPN when I go back to school. Leaving soon so need a quick response, thanks

ST Editor says:

Hi Janet,
ExpressVPN have a 6-month plan if you don’t want to commit to a year. Just FYI, we get a lot of students subscribing to the VPN services once they get to school because of blocked access once in school campus. I would consider taking the 1-year subscription so you won’t have to subscribe again in case you need to access social media or streaming sites in school, plus, you save up significantly.

Faik Ali says:

I am in Pakistan and Express VPN is slow over here, is it normal or I figured it wrong? Please help me out. It was working fine when I was in Russia. Do I need to buy a different service of what?

ST Editor says:

Hi Faik,
I would just contact them via their live chat for them to troubleshoot with your OS and IP and find the solution for you. ExpressVPN is very quick and effective at assisting.

Marcos says:

Thanks for sharing. I actually use VPNs whenever I travel to access Amazon Tv stream and Netflix. I just happen to be a television freak

LIZZY says:

Why do I need a VPN to stream US televison shows while on travel abroad?

Ilana says:

Hi Lizzy,
You need a VPN since depending on your location when overseas, you won’t have online access to the US TV shows you want to stream. The VPN provider will enable you to spoof your location and connect to a remote server, therefore allowing to connect to your show of choice. The service providers listed above, like ExpressVPN or NordVPN, are very reliable in terms of connection speed and support if ever you need help troubleshooting.

Costa Gerrad says:

I really need this but I need to know the best VPN for US video streaming. A friend reported series of disconnection. Please Tell me the best to use so as not to make the same mistake as my friend. Besides, Can I use it in Spain?

Ilana says:

Hi Costa, I would go with ExpressVPN as #1 and NordVPN as second choice, although opinions are mixed with these 2 as to which is the best. They’re both highly reliable and a fast services.

Darius says:

It’s really nice to know that there a lot of options I can use to watch US tv shows when I travel out on trips. Which is the fastest and most secure VPN?

Janelle says:

It’s great to see that there are so many options for watching my favourite shows when I’m abroad. Thank you for this information.

Avi says:

I live in the UK and I can already access Netflix. Is there any point in getting a VPN? Can I get different shows?

ST Editor says:

Yes, exactly. Although UK subscribers enjoy an extensive catalog, it does not match the reams and reams of extra shows in the US. You can also access other Netflix catalogs if you’re interested in foreign film – as well as alternative streaming services that experience content blocks.

BrianG says:

Unfortunately, Hulu and HBO apparently have enhanced their ability to detect where you are in the world blocking you even when you have VPN. I use ExpressVPN and on my iPad, the only way I have found to watch Hulu and HBO is to completely disable Location Services in addition to connecting through an ExpressVPN server. If anyone has found a better way, would love to hear from you!

karen winstead says:

Will I be able to access us tv channels and series?

John says:

Yes, as long as they have an online service that you have access to like DIRECTV NOW.

Kelly says:

I bought it, it was nice.

Edie Mitchell says:

Nov 22, 2016 Tuesday
Hello. I have express vpn on my android galaxy note 4. However your company states I can use this product on 3 devices, including my Samsung Smart TV.
However after several attemtd I am unable to get Express VPN into my TV although it is installed on my Galaxy Note 4. Help plz.

Lyndon Seitz says:

Hey Edie,

Did you try contacting ExpressVPN’s customer service department? They’re incredibly helpful and should be able to help you with your problem.

Best,
Lyndon

adele samantha says:

Thanks for sharing! I love Hulu plus especially because I can watch the latest episodes 1 day after they air.