How to watch EastEnders outside the UK

If you’re trying to watch EastEnders outside the UK, and the country you’re in doesn’t broadcast the show, don’t panic, there’s an easy way to watch every episode of EastEnders anywhere in the world.

All you need to do is gain access to the free UK streaming service BBC iPlayer. To do that, you need a VPN that can work with BBC iPlayer.

This article will explain how to watch EastEnders outside the UK using a reliable VPN.

See also:

How to watch EastEnders outside the UK: Quick Guide

To watch EastEnders outside the UK, you need to gain access to the UK streaming service, BBC iPlayer.

The problem is if you’re outside the UK, BBC iPlayer won’t work.

To get BBC iPlayer to work outside the UK, follow these steps:

  1. Create a new account with ExpressVPN ($6.67/month).

  2. Download and install the new VPN app

  3. Select a UK server

  4. Create an BBC iPlayer account if you don’t have one (see below)

  5. Visit BBC iPlayer

  6. Watch EastEnders anywhere in the world

How to make a BBC iPlayer account outside the UK

BBC iPlayer is a free streaming service, so making an account outside the UK is incredibly easy. For a more comprehensive tutorial you can read our how to make an BBC iPlayer account outside the UK article.

Making an BBC iPlayer account outside the UK is simple, you don’t need a UK credit card or payment method. All you need is a VPN that works reliably with BBC iPlayer (we recommend ExpressVPN ($6.67/month), an active email address and a UK ZIP code:

  1. Download and install ExpressVPN ($6.67/month)
  2. Connect to a UK server
  3. Visit Sign In – BBC iPlayer
  4. Click Register
  5. Input your email address and password
  6. When it asks for a UK ZIP code or address, you can get one here
  7. Watch EastEnders on BBC iPlayer anywhere in the world

How to download the BBC iPlayer app outside the UK

If you’re outside the UK you won’t be able to find the BBC iPlayer app on the Apple or Google app stores.

Below is a step-by-step guide on how to get around this:

Apple

  1. Download ExpressVPN ($6.67/month) and connect to a UK server
  2. Create a new iCloud account for free
  3. Login to your new iCloud account
  4. Open your account
  5. Select Media and Purchases
  6. Select View Account
  7. Tap Country/Region and select the UK
  8. You’ll now have access to the UK version of the App Store
  9. Download BBC iPlayer

Android

  1. Create a new Google Play account and login to it on the Google Play store
  2. Download and install ExpressVPN ($6.67/month) on your Android phone
  3. Connect to a UK server on ExpressVPN ($6.67/month)
  4. Open up your Google Play Account
  5. Click Settings
  6. Click General
  7. Click account and device preferences
  8. Change your location to the UK
  9. Put in your credit card details
  10. Close Google Play and open it again
  11. You’ll now be on the UK version of the Google Play Store
  12. Download and install BBC iPlayer
How to watch EastEnders outside the UK

Why can’t I access BBC iPlayer outside the UK?

The reason you can’t watch BBC iPlayer outside the UK is because the streaming service only has the rights to broadcast its content in the UK.

If BBC iPlayer made itself available outside the UK it would be breaching copyright and licensing agreements already in place with other streaming services and content providers in certain locations.

These sorts of breaches are illegal and would result in BBC iPlayer being heavily fined.

To prevent this from happening, BBC iPlayer blocks anyone outside the UK from accessing its content. This is why you can’t access the streaming service when abroad.

How does BBC iPlayer block my connection outside the UK?

Whenever you go online, you’re allocated a unique IP address. This is used by your device to communicate with the online service you’re visiting, in this case BBC iPlayer.

You need an IP address to go online, there’s no way to turn it off. This can create a problem when trying to watch BBC iPlayer outside the UK because in order for this communication to work it needs to contain information about your physical location.

For example, if you’re in the US your IP address will show you’re in the US, if you’re in Canada your IP address will show you’re in Canada and so on.

When you connect to BBC iPlayer your IP address is sent to the streaming service’s servers. Here it’s scanned by BBC iPlayer and if the location information stored on your IP address shows you aren’t in the UK, BBC iPlayer will block your connection.

How can I watch BBC iPlayer outside the UK?

To watch BBC iPlayer outside the UK you need to get around the streaming service’s location-based blocks.

The easiest way to do this is to change your IP address to one based in the UK. This way, when BBC iPlayer scans your IP address, it will think you’re located in the UK and you’ll be able to access all of its content including EastEnders.

The good news is changing your IP address isn’t hard. All you need is a reliable VPN that works well with BBC iPlayer.

The best VPNs for BBC iPlayer are ExpressVPN ($6.67/month) or Private Internet Access ($2.03/month). These VPNs allow you to change your IP address instantly. All you need to do is download one of these apps, they’re available on almost any device you can think of, connect to a UK server and within seconds you’ll have a UK IP address.

How to watch EastEnders outside the UK

Will any VPN work with BBC iPlayer?

Because VPNs are becoming increasingly more popular, BBC iPlayer is aware that they can potentially allow people to watch its content outside the UK.

Someone using a VPN to watch BBC iPlayer outside the UK could result in the streaming service getting fined for being available in a location where it doesn’t have the rights to broadcast its content. To prevent this, BBC iPlayer has started to block VPNs.

These blocks are incredibly hard to get around and there’s a huge number of lesser VPNs that can’t beat them. This means they won’t work with BBC iPlayer and it could mean you waste money on a VPN that won’t work.

Fortunately, there are VPNs out there that have measures in place to ensure they can get around these blocks. Both ExpressVPN ($6.67/month) or Private Internet Access ($2.03/month) play a game of cat and mouse with BBC iPlayer meaning if an IP address provided by ExpressVPN ($6.67/month) or Private Internet Access ($2.03/month) gets blocked by BBC iPlayer, these VPNs will close that IP and open a new unblocked one.

This will allow you to watch BBC iPlayer reliably outside the UK, and therefore allow you to watch EastEnders all over the world.

The best VPNs for BBC iPlayer

1. ExpressVPN 🥇

Why You Should Use ExpressVPN? It’s the fastest and MOST reliable VPN of 2023

ExpressVPN UK screenshot

Pros

  • ✅ Fast servers
  • ✅ Thousands of IP addresses
  • ✅ 10-simultaneous connections
  • ✅ 24/7 Live Chat
  • ✅ Easy-to-use app
  • ✅ 30-day money-back guarantee

Cons

  • ❌ Expensive
Best VPN list - ExpressVPN

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Number of servers: 3,000+ | Speed: >80% | Bandwidth: Unlimited | IP locations: 160 in 94 countries | Devices supported: 5 | Live chat: Yes | 30-day money-back guarantee: Yes

  • $6.66/month for 15 months
  • $9.99/month for 6 months
  • $12.95/month for 1 month
  • Netflix icon
  • BBC iPlayer icon
  • ESPN icon
  • Hulu icon
  • HBO Max icon
  • Disney icon
  • Amazon Prime Video icon
  • YouTube TV icon
  • Apple TV Plus icon
  • FuboTV icon
  • ShowTime icon
  • Discovery Plus icon
  • ABC icon
  • All 4 icon
  • NowTV icon
  • CBS icon
  • NBC icon
  • Sky Sports icon
  • BT Sport icon

ExpressVPN ($6.66/month) is still the best VPN. And importantly, it ALWAYS has servers that are open with major streaming sites such as Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Hulu, Disney+, HBO Max, Paramount+, Amazon Prime Video, etc.

ExpressVPN is usually very good at playing Cat and Mouse with online streaming sites. Meaning, whenever one of its servers is blacklisted it creates a new one – giving its users a constant stream of servers that aren’t blocked. Needless to say, this is a valuable attribute if you’re looking for a VPN to unblock streaming sites.

Its app is easy-to-use and free to download on pretty much any device you can think of. Mac, Windows, iOS, Android, FireStick, Android TV, Roku, PS4, Xbox, Linux, even Apple TV (with a workaround). It’s got it all covered.

The app is another main reason this VPN is so good at unblocking TV streaming sites (that claim they block VPNs) is that its software takes a pragmatic approach to user management. While other VPNs tempt customers by promising them access to hundreds/thousands of servers in multiple countries, ExpressVPN does things differently.

With ExpressVPN you only have a handful of server locations to choose from. Once you select your location the app takes care of the rest. Assigning you to the fastest available server that’s not oversubscribed. This simple technique is so important, as it keeps ExpressVPN’s servers operating at lightning-fast speeds and prevents its IPs from getting blacklisted for “abnormal” usage in the first place.

Check out our full ExpressVPN review.

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2. NordVPN 🥈

A very quick and trustworthy VPN

NordVPN US screenshot mobile

Pros

  • ✅ Fast servers
  • ✅ No logs
  • ✅ Thousands of IP addresses
  • ✅ 6-simultaneous connections
  • ✅ 30-day money-back guarantee
  • ✅ Easy-to-use app

Cons

  • ❌ No refunds for purchases from iTunes/App store
Best VPN list - NordVPN

Special Offer for you!

Sign up for a 3-year plan with Private Internet Access and save 83% + 3 months free. That works out at $2.03/month.

Number of servers: 5,000+ | Speeds: >80% | Bandwidth: Unlimited | IP locations: 62 countries | Devices supported: 6 | Live chat: Yes | 30-day money-back guarantee: Yes

  • $3.49/month for 2 years
  • $6.99/month for 1 year
  • $11.95/month for 1 month
  • Netflix icon
  • BBC iPlayer icon
  • ESPN icon
  • Hulu icon
  • HBO Max icon
  • Disney icon
  • Amazon Prime Video icon
  • YouTube TV icon
  • Apple TV Plus icon
  • FuboTV icon
  • ShowTime icon
  • Discovery Plus icon
  • ABC icon
  • All 4 icon
  • NowTV icon
  • CBS icon
  • NBC icon
  • Sky Sports icon
  • BT Sport icon
  • ITV Hub icon
  • Spark Sport icon
  • CBC Gem icon

NordVPN is the most widely-used VPN in the world. And it’s easy to see why. It’s a polished app that delivers fast connections (more on this later) to a massive network of VPN servers.

It’s the most reliable at unblocking popular streaming services too – US Netflix, Hulu, Disney+, BBC iPlayer, HBO Max, Amazon Prime Video, etc. This is because NordVPN hired a full-time technical team (that’s responsible for monitoring its servers’ connections with popular TV streaming services) and has been aggressively investing in its network of IP addresses in key locations.

Another interesting thing to note is that NordVPN is an industry leader in its development of Nordlynx technology. Nordlynx is built using the WireGuard, a new VPN tunneling protocol designed to outperform current standards (OpenVPN and IPSec). The benefits, according to NordVPN, are dramatically faster transfer speeds while connected to a VPN. My tests – New Zealand to London – confirm that Nordlynx is currently the fastest VPN on the market. However, the difference isn’t dramatic, a few Mbps is all.

Read our NordVPN review.

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3. Private Internet Access

The BEST low-cost VPN for streaming!

Best VPN list - PIA

Pros

  • ✅ Fast and reliable servers
  • ✅ Thousands of IP addresses
  • ✅ 10-simultaneous connections
  • ✅ 24/7 Live Chat
  • ✅ 30-day money-back guarantee

Cons

  • ❌ Only 48 server locations
Best VPN list - PIA

Special Offer for you!

Sign up for a 3-year plan with Private Internet Access and save 83% + 3 months free. That works out at $2.03/month.

Number of servers: 25,000+ | Speed: >75% | Bandwidth: Unlimited | IP locations: 70 in 74 countries | Devices supported: 10 | Live chat: Yes | 30-day money-back guarantee: Yes

  • $2.03/month for 3 years
  • $7.50/month for 6 months
  • $11.99/month for 1 month
  • Netflix icon
  • BBC iPlayer icon
  • ESPN icon
  • Hulu icon
  • HBO Max icon
  • Disney icon
  • Amazon Prime Video icon
  • YouTube TV icon
  • Apple TV Plus icon
  • FuboTV icon
  • ShowTime icon
  • Discovery Plus icon
  • ABC icon
  • All 4 icon
  • NowTV icon
  • CBS icon
  • NBC icon
  • Sky Sports icon
  • BT Sport icon

Private Internet Access is one of the leading no-log VPN services with over 1-million paying customers.

This VPN is one of the best in the industry at beating streaming sites’ VPN bans. It provides reliable connections with US Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Hulu, HBO Max, Disney+ Amazon Prime Video, etc. It also allows 10 simultaneous devices to be connected to its servers at the same time, so you can share the account with your close friends.

If – for whatever reason – you’re not happy with Private Internet Access, there’s a 24/7 live chat support available to assist you with your problem. PIA also offers the industry-standard 30-day money-back guarantee.

From my tests (from New Zealand) I was able to get download speeds of 70 Mbps while connected to a UK server using the Private Internet Access VPN (my non-VPN speed is 100 Mbps).

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4. Ivacy

A very quick and trustworthy VPN

Ivacy US screenshot mobile

Pros

  • ✅ Fast servers
  • ✅ Thousands of IP addresses
  • ✅ Dedicated streaming servers
  • ✅ 5-simultaneous connections
  • ✅ 30-day money-back guarantee
  • ✅ 24/7 Live Chat

Cons

  • ❌ Only 5 devices
  • ❌ Sometimes runs slow
  • ❌ Occasionally block by streaming sites for several days
Best VPN - Ivacy on Mac

Special Offer for you!

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Number of servers: 1,000+ | Speed: >65% | Bandwidth: Unlimited | IP locations: 275 in 100 countries | Devices supported: 5 | Live chat: Yes | 30-day money-back guarantee: Yes

  • $1.16/month for 5 years
  • $3.50/month for 1 year
  • $9.99/month for 1 month
  • Netflix icon
  • BBC iPlayer icon
  • ESPN icon
  • Hulu icon
  • HBO Max icon
  • Disney icon
  • Amazon Prime Video icon
  • YouTube TV icon
  • Apple TV Plus icon
  • FuboTV icon
  • ShowTime icon
  • Discovery Plus icon
  • ABC icon
  • All 4 icon
  • NowTV icon
  • CBS icon
  • NBC icon
  • Sky Sports icon
  • BT Sport icon
  • ITV Hub icon
  • Spark Sport icon
  • CBC Gem icon

If you’re looking for an excellent VPN, with an even better price tag, Ivacy ($1.16/month) is a great option.

This VPN has all the features you need to stream BBC iPlayer, in HD, from any country in the world. I’ve been testing the app recently on Mac, PC, Android, iOS and FireStick and the results have been impressive – unlocking BBC iPlayer, US Netflix, Hulu, Disney+, HBO Max, Amazon Prime Video, etc. with ease.

The Ivacy app is a little different in regards to its UX (user experience). Instead of just selecting a UK server, you need to select the specific BBC iPlayer server. Don’t worry, this isn’t a bad thing – by connecting to a dedicated BBC iPlayer server, it simply means that you’re connecting to an IP address that Ivacy knows works with BBC iPlayer.

For an extra $1.99/month (£1.74) you can add-on a dedicated IP. This will buy you sole access to an IP address in a country of your choice, meaning you won’t have to share your IP (and speeds) with any other use. I don’t recommend this though, using the regular Ivacy servers is enough 95 per cent of the time.

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5. CyberGhost

A very quick and trustworthy VPN

CyberGhost UK screenshot

Pros

  • ✅ 1-day free trial
  • ✅ Reliable servers
  • ✅ Thousands of IP addresses
  • ✅ 7-simultaneous connections
  • ✅ 30-day money-back guarantee
  • ✅ Easy-to-use app

Cons

  • ❌ Expensive
  • ❌ Average speed scores
CyberGhost
CyberGhost

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Number of servers: 1,000+ | Speed: >65% | Bandwidth: Unlimited | IP locations: 275 in 100 countries | Devices supported: 5 | Live chat: Yes | 30-day money-back guarantee: Yes

  • $2.75/month for 3 years
  • $3.69/month for 2 years
  • $5.99/month for 1 year
  • $12.99/month for 1 month
  • Netflix icon
  • BBC iPlayer icon
  • ESPN icon
  • Hulu icon
  • HBO Max icon
  • Disney icon
  • Amazon Prime Video icon
  • YouTube TV icon
  • Apple TV Plus icon
  • FuboTV icon
  • ShowTime icon
  • Discovery Plus icon
  • ABC icon
  • All 4 icon
  • NowTV icon
  • CBS icon
  • NBC icon
  • Sky Sports icon
  • BT Sport icon

CyberGhost is one of the more established VPNs on the market. It has a well-established, and well-tested global network of servers that perform well.

From my tests over the past several months, CyberGhost has no trouble at unblocking major streaming services – US Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Hulu, Disney+, Amazon Prime Video, HBO Max etc. This VPN performed well at maintaining download speeds, well above 65 per cent of my regular (non VPN) ISP speed.

That said, there’s nothing really unique about the service. Which forces you to look at its price-point. And there’s nothing special here. Its short-term $12.99/month price tag puts is well above the industry average of $10.10/month. Similarly, its long-term $2.75/month for 3 years deal isn’t much of a “deal” either.

Oddly, CyberGhost’s most unique feature is its a 1-day, no obligations, free trial. This is an appealing offer to customers who are new to VPNs. However, it’s important to remember that most reputable VPNs will offer customers a 30-day money-back guarantee, so try not to be too seduced by the offer.

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Is watching BBC iPlayer with a VPN legal?

There are only a handful of countries (spot the authoritarianism link) where using a VPN is illegal; these are: China, Russia, Iran, Turkey, United Arab Emirates, North Korea, Iraq, Belarus, Turkmenistan, Egypt, Eritrea, Seychelles, Suriname, Namibia, Slovenia, Nicaragua and Tajikistan.

If you’re outside these countries and are using a VPN, you’re legally allowed to do so. However, it’s important to know that using a VPN with BBC iPlayer may breach the service’s terms of use.

In here it states: “You need to be covered by a TV Licence to watch or record live TV programmes on any channel, or to watch or download BBC programmes on iPlayer when you’re in the UK, the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man. If you’re outside these areas you need to check if your country has its own TV licensing scheme.”

What this means is if you’re accessing BBC iPlayer in a location that doesn’t have a TV licensing scheme with a VPN, then the BBC is within its rights to ban/block your connection or account.

However, with BBC iPlayer being a free streaming service that doesn’t require any sort of subscription, you aren’t obliged to accept a contractual agreement meaning there’s less restrictions when it comes to using a VPN with the streaming service. Also the best VPNs for BBC iPlayeruse military-grade encryption, it’s impossible for streaming services to trace where you’re physically accessing its content from.

This means, although BBC iPlayer will try and stop you from accessing its content with a VPN. It won’t ban your account for using one.

Also, BBC iPlayer has never banned anyone for using a VPN to access its service.

Patch Bowen
Patch Bowen is an accomplished technology journalist with a solid academic foundation, holding a degree from Auckland University. His expertise spans across a range of tech topics, with a notable focus on product reviews, industry trends, and the impact of technology on society. With his work featured on major New Zealand websites like Stuff.co.nz, thebit.nz, and The Press, Patch has established himself as a credible voice in technology media. His articles are known for their detailed analysis and practical insights, particularly in making complex technological concepts understandable for a broad audience. At ReviewsFire, Patch is renowned for his thorough evaluations and clear, informative writing style. He has a knack for identifying and explaining the nuances of the latest gadgets and digital trends, earning him a reputation as a trusted source for tech advice and information.

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