If you are after the latest guide on how to watch ESPN from outside of the US including Canada, then you’re in the right place.
This is important:This guide will not only show you how to stream ESPN from anywhere but also ESPN+.
The first thing you need to understand is that the sporting channel has its own dedicated online streaming service. That streaming service conveniently goes by the name of “ESPN,” but it used to be called “WatchESPN.” There is also ESPN+.
Just so that we’re all on the same page, let’s first answer a couple of questions:
What’s the Difference Between ESPN, the ESPN App and ESPN+?
The app (formerly WatchESPN) and ESPN+ are two different things, and they are also different from the regular channel.
To simplify, ESPN stands for the “Entertainment and Sports Programming Network”.
Its content is sold to cable TV networks around the world and it has the best sports available to watch. The regular channel is not available on its own without a cable TV subscription.
The app is the official free website/app where you can stream and check out free clips and short videos of the sports that the channel covers. And if you have a cable TV subscription with the ESPN channel, you can enter your account details and access ESPN channels from here—just as if you were watching from your cable TV.
ESPN+ is a low-cost add-on to the free version of the app where you can watch special live stream sporting events that are not available on regular ESPN, such as UFC fights.
Note:This is also geo-blocked to everyone outside of the US, but don’t worry: We have a way around it.
In summary, ESPN is great. There is no doubt about that as it has a tremendous catalog of sports content. Most of all, it continues to improve despite leading the competition in terms of quality and quantity of content.
Will the ESPN App Work Overseas?
First, you need to know why you can’t watch ESPN outside of the U.S.A. This is because the company’s owners (Disney) have placed many geo-restrictions on its content. These geo-restrictions basically prevent people who live outside the US from accessing its content and all its services.
Warning:If you try to open the official website/app and you’re not in the U.S. it will detect your IP address and location (just like below, then you will either get a completely different version of the site (with much less content) or an error message: “ESPN not available in your country.”
Checking Your IP Address...
It doesn’t matter which citizenship you hold. Even if you are an American living in another country, an American ex-pat or are traveling outside the US for business, you can’t watch ESPN abroad without an expensive cable subscription where you are paying for tons of channels you don’t want or use. And that is assuming you live in a country that actually has a cable TV company with access to ESPN.
Countries in which the full version of ESPN isn't available include (but not limited to):
Don’t get too disheartened, there are many ways to watch it online, not just one.
How to Watch ESPN Without Cable With a VPN Service
VPN services are awesome if you want security along with the ability to unblock streaming sites. A VPN (which stands for Virtual Private Network) is the best way to stream ESPN outside of the US There is no other better method. Of course, depending on your circumstances you may or may not use a VPN service—but hear us out.
The website/app prevents all non-U.S. users from accessing the company’s online content via its streaming devices.
But how does a website/app know where a particular user is coming from?
A VPN service provider gets around this by providing you with the tools to change your computer’s IP address to another IP based in another country.
So, since you want to watch ESPN from outside of the US, you have to change your IP address to the U.S. That way, it appears as if you’re accessing the site from the US. Once you’ve set up a Virtual Private Network on your streaming device (like your laptop, phone or tablet), all you have to do is connect to a VPN server that is located in the U.S. And that’s pretty much it.
A VPN service not only unblocks ESPN outside the US for you, but it also protects your data and online privacy by encrypting everything.
There are a ton of VPN service providers on the market. With so many options to choose from, how to do you know which one should you go with? We’ve put together a separate guide with the top 10 best VPNs available today.
This is important:Through our testing, we found that NordVPN is the best VPN service provider for watching ESPN outside the US
And there are good reasons for this. NordVPN is:
- 30-day money-back guarantee.
With the right tools, you can stream a lot more than just sports (think Netflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime Video, NFL, NBA—you name it).
- First, sign up for a good VPN service provider of your choice that has servers in the U.S.
- As mentioned before, our research shows that to stream ESPN outside the U.S., NordVPN is the best VPN service provider.
- You’ll need to sign up on NordVPN’s website here.
- Download the VPN and install the VPN app on your favorite device.
- Run/start the application.
- Enter your credentials in the login screen.
- Find/search for a VPN server located in the U.S. from the server selection menu.
- Hit Connect.
- Go to https://www.espn.com/ to stream ESPN on your laptop.
- If on iOS or Android then go to your App Store/Google Play Store and install the official app.
- Open the app and enjoy being able to watch ESPN online for free (while VPN running).
- If you already have a U.S. cable TV subscription with the channel, then you can enter your details to unlock all the sports content except for ESPN+.
- If you want the full experience (including all UFC fights, then follow the guide below to add ESPN+ to your app.
And that’s it, you’re streaming the latest sports.
How to Stream ESPN+ (ESPN Plus) Outside the U.S.
- First, you need to follow the instructions above to get a VPN and install the US version of the app on your desired device.
- Make sure your VPN is turned on and connected to a server that’s based in the U.S.
- Go to the official ESPN+ website here.
- Sign up for the subscription package.
- Open your ESPN app and then enter your login details.
- Go crazy watching sports!
How to Watch ESPN in Canada
If you want ESPN streaming in Canada for your favorite sports, then your choices are limited. Canada only has the “classic” version available through TSN. It mainly shows hockey, Canadian football, basketball, curling and other sports aimed at the Canadian audience. You will need to have a cable TV subscription to watch this version of the channel.
In order to have the best ESPN streaming experience in Canada, you will need to follow the guide here to get around these restrictions so you can watch more sporting content as if you’re located in the U.S. on services like ESPN plus Canada (ESPN+ Canada).
How to Watch ESPN in the U.K.
If you are in the U.K. and want to access ESPN, then you’ll need a cable TV subscription to BT Sport. The U.K. version is slightly different from the U.S. version and will not have anywhere near as much content. If you don’t have a BT Sport subscription or want to unlock more U.S.-exclusive content, then just follow the guide here.
How to Watch ESPN in Europe
If you’re in Europe and want to stream ESPN, then you need to check if the cable TV companies in your country have the channel and how different they are to the U.S. version. Usually, they are very different and have much less content. If you already have a subscription and in your home country, then just enter your details in the ESPN app and it should work.
Alternatively, you can use the guide here to unblock ESPN and access more content as if you were living in the U.S.
How to Watch ESPN in Australia
For those of you living “down under,” the normal way to watch ESPN Australia is with a subscription to Foxtel, but then you can only watch what they choose and when they want to show it. A Foxtel sports package starts at over $50 per month, so to get it and ESPN plus Australia, you’re better off getting a VPN and then getting ESPN+ for $4.99. Follow the instructions here to do that.
Which Devices Can I Use to Stream Content From ESPN’s Online Streaming Service?
You stream ESPN online using the following devices:
- LG Samsung Smart TV
- Apple TV
- Amazon Fire Stick and FireTV
As mentioned before, VPN services don’t just allow you to access all of ESPN’s content from outside of the US They have lots of other benefits as well.
They can also unlock other US-only online streaming services, such as:
- Hulu Plus
- NBA Game Time
- Fox Soccer 2Go
- Fox Sports Go
- Amazon Prime Video
- HBO Go
Which VPN Service Should You Sign Up For?
As we’ve stated above, we’ve found that NordVPN is the best Virtual Private Network (VPN) service provider if you want to watch the best sports on services like ESPN outside of the US.
NordVPN is the top-ranked VPN service on our list for many reasons. Namely, it doesn’t keep any logs of user data, it offers a large pool of VPN servers to choose from, it comes at a decent price and it offers extra features such as ad-blocking.
As you can see, there are plenty of options you can use to watch ESPN outside of the U.S. Ultimately, it all comes down to you. How do you want to consume your content? And how much safety and security do you want while you do that?
If you have any questions, as always, send them to us via our comments section below.