How To Watch Channel 4 Abroad: The No-Nonsense Guide for 2021
You’re out of the country but still want to catch up with your favourite Channel 4 program. Instead of the latest melodrama from Chester with Hollyoaks or a shockingly bad celebrity date, you’re faced with a warning—you’re in the wrong country.
In this 10 minute guide we’ll show you how to unblock Channel 4’s streaming service ALL4, and be able to watch it no matter where you are. Let’s go!
Here's a super quick summary of what you need to do to get your favourite streaming service working from abroad.
- Register with a VPN service that will make it look like you are connecting from the UK. Not all work with UK
streaming services but we have tested most and recommend one of the following:
Surfshark (click to see price)
NordVPN (click to see price)
ExpressVPN (click to see price)
- Download the app for the VPN of your choice, login and use it to switch your "Internet country" to the UK.
- Done! You can now watch UK TV channels and use your streaming services from anywhere in the world. You can also use the VPN to, for example, access more Netflix regions, unlock Amazon Prime Video content and watch many local streaming services.
All4 is channel 4’s streaming service. So, if you want to see Celebs Go Dating, or The O.C. This is the place to go. Almost all of Channel 4’s content is available on demand here (with some exceptions due to licensing rights).
All4 also allows you to live stream all of Channel 4’s TV channels, including Film4, E4 and the rest. You can even download some shows for later watching, although this is restricted to mobile devices.
There is also the possibility to watch shows ad free with the All4+ option. For a small monthly fee, you can enjoy all your favourites without being interrupted by those pesky ad breaks.
You’ve been Geo-blocked
TV licensing is based on location. So, if you’re a UK resident, but have headed abroad for any reason, you won’t be able to catch up on your favourite channel 4 programs until you get home. That is—unless you have a VPN.
Yes! It is possible to catch the latest true crime series even if you aren’t in the UK. And in this article, we will show you how to do it. Want to watch Channel 4 from anywhere? No problem.
What is a VPN?
VPN stands for Virtual Private Network, and it’s a way to increase privacy over the internet. A VPN masks your computer from the rest of the world, protecting your privacy by hiding your location and other information from the websites you access.
VPN services are offered by lots of companies, most reputable, one or two less so. By using a reputable service, your computer is hidden from the wider internet. And you can use it to fool a website into thinking you’re somewhere you’re not. Like still being in the UK, when in fact you’re laid out on a hotel bed wishing you could catch up on your favourite program.
Abroad? Unblock All4 with a VPN
By installing an app from a VPN service provider, you can change your internet location to anywhere the VPN provider has a server. Using this app, you can change your internet address to a different country. So, if you wish to watch Channel 4, you use your VPN app to select a server in the UK.
And now it appears to All4, and any other website you access, that you’re in the UK. Channel 4 is no longer blocked, and you can watch Hollyoaks, and all your other favourites whenever you choose.
When not using a VPN, your computer talks directly to the website or service you’re using. This makes it easy to see where you are. VPN companies operate servers all over the world so that you can choose the server in the country you need.
A VPN acts as middle ground between you and, in this case, the All4 server. All4 talks to the VPN server and sees it’s in the UK and therefore thinks you are too.
Step-by-step: how to watch All4 if you're outside the UK
1. Get All4
Super easy. Go here: All4 Or download the app in the Apple or Google Play Stores.
If you don’t have an All4 account, you’ll need to register. You can’t access All4 without an account. And remember, to get an account you’ll need a valid UK address.
First, they’ll confirm your email address and then you can carry on with the registration.
2. Sign up for a VPN service subscription
We know there are dozens of VPN services out there, so we have tested them for you. UK Broadcasters try to deter VPN service providers and attempt to block access. That’s why you need a good VPN provider who has lots of servers.
Most of the good services provide different subscription lengths. This means you can choose if you want a VPN only while you’re abroad or would prefer to keep it and access all sorts of the world’s best TV while you’re at home in the UK. That’s because a VPN isn’t just useful when you’re away. You can use it to access global TV from the comfort of your own home.
If you want uninterrupted service for a reasonable price, we recommend one of these services:
If you choose an annual subscription, it will cost approximately £2 per month but they also provide other, shorter options. Their app is straightforward and customer service is helpful. Surfshark lets you unblock All4 and other UK streaming services. You can stream on an unlimited number of devices, a feature we really like since it makes it easy to share with the rest of the family.
Click here to unblock All4 using Surfshark
NordVPN is reliable, which is why it’s one of the most popular services around. And, if you choose a longer plan, they’re very reasonable. NordVPN works with All4 and other UK broadcasters, and it will also give you access to a few more streaming services than Surfshark (ABC and Eleven Sports for example). NordVPN gives you 6 simultaneous device connections.
Click here to unblock All4 using NordVPN
ExpressVPN is considered the premium service provider by some because it has servers in more countries than the others. So, if you want to watch TV from all over the globe ExpressVPN might be the right option. The server speeds are fast, and the service is reliable. With servers everywhere, it means you get access to more geo-blocked TV than the other options. ExpressVPN will allow 5 devices simultaneously.
Click here to unblock All4 using ExpressVPN
Which one to choose?
If your main reason for choosing a VPN is to stream, then we recommend Surfshark. The good price and the unlimited number of connections makes it a great choice for you and all the family.
All three of these VPN service providers offer 30-day money-back guarantees. Which means you can try them all without risk before deciding which one you want.
3. Set up the VPN on your computer, phone and/or tablet
Once you’ve signed up for a VPN, you just need to install the app onto your computer, phone or tablet (or all three).
All the apps for these VPN’s are easy to install and use:
- Get the app from their website or the relevant app store and install it.
- Log in with the same email and password you used to sign up.
- Once in the app you will find a drop-down list or map showing the servers available. Pick one in the UK.
- Your computer is now running through a UK server.
Finished! All4 is now available to use.
Go back to the All4 website or app to watch any of your favourite Channel 4 shows.
(And, once you’ve caught up, you can now find dozens of other TV channels to watch thanks to your new VPN)
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I use the VPN to unblock other streaming services?
Yes, you can! A VPN subscription lets you access servers all over the world so you can stream TV from anywhere.
For about £2 per month (with Surfshark) you can stream not only Channel 4 but also:
ITV, Sky Go, Channel 5, BBC iPlayer, over 15 Netflix regions (including the UK), Hulu, Disney+, Amazon Prime Video, HBO, Hotstar and many, many more.
Yes! Having a VPN subscription is great value for money because it allows you to stream TV from all over the world.
Can I access All4 without a UK address?
Yes. Although the registration will ask you for a postcode, Channel4 doesn’t check, so as long as you use a valid one the app will let you stream.
Is watching All4 using a VPN illegal?
No, of course not. But if you decide to use a VPN for streaming, it is at your own risk. Most broadcasters say it is against their terms and conditions.
Can I use a free VPN with All4?
In theory yes. But we haven’t found any free services that:
1. Offer consistently good service
2. Allow you to unblock all the major channels
3. Aren’t a security risk. – Free services have a history of selling your information (they have to make money somehow right?)
4. Have decent customer service
But, if you come across a reliable one, please let us know and we’ll add it to our list.
What VPN do you recommend for watching All4 abroad?
For streaming All4 our best recommendations are:
Surfshark, NordVPN or ExpressVPN.
With good subscription options, great customer service and easy to use apps, these three are top. They also all provide a money back guarantee for 30 days.