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Watch American TV in France

This article explains how to watch American TV in France. Learn how to get access to American live TV and on-demand channels from abroad. Check out the video-on-demand streaming services in France and watch your favorite movies. Living overseas doesn’t mean that you have to give up on your favorite American shows.

Disclosure: This site is sponsored by ads and affiliate programs. I may earn money from the companies mentioned in this post.

Let’s start.

Do you Need a VPN to Watch American TV in France?

Most streaming companies restrict access to their servers to users located inside the United States. This is the reason why you get unpleasant messages like this one when you try to access restricted content from abroad.

a VPN unlocks access to restricted content
Use a VPN to unlock streaming services with restricted access

The solution to this issue is to use a Virtual Private Network or VPN. A VPN makes it look like you are browsing the internet from a device located inside the U.S. borders. Read VPN for expats if you’re not 100% sure about how to use a VPN or which one to get.

Some video-on-demand (VOD) platforms, like Netflix, offer one specific catalog per country. When you watch Netflix in France, you do not have access to the American catalog, unless you use a VPN.

Other Video-on-demand platforms like HBO Max won’t let you sign up from outside the United States. For these platforms, using a VPN lets you subscribe to their service.


Even though you can now watch any TV program without cable in the United States, most American TV streaming services won’t let you access their content from abroad. They will either redirect you to their European website if they have one, or they will block you. A VPN will unlock the doors to American TV in France.

How to use your VPN for Streaming

When you are ready to sign up for a streaming service, clear your browser cache and cookies first. Once it’s done, start your VPN and pick a server in the United States. Once connected, sign up to your streaming platform of choice.

How to Watch American TV in France

It used to be that you needed to have cable to watch TV. With Internet Protocole Television or IPTV, you don’t need cable anymore. All you need is a decent internet connection. You don’t even need a TV set as you can watch TV series and shows on pretty much any connected device at any time of the day.

Services that deliver media content over the internet are called over-the-top services or OTT.

Watch TV on your Computer

Watching TV on your computer, phone or tablet is easy and it’s a simple matter of signing in on a TV streaming service webpage. You can both access live TV or on-demand content that was aired earlier.

Watch TV on your TV Set

Most IPTV streaming services in France provide an app that you can install on your smart TV. If you have a regular TV or if your smart TV does not allow you to install a specific app for some reason, you can purchase a streaming device. The most popular streaming devices are Amazon Fire Tv stick, Chromecast dongle or Roku.

Free American TV in France

watch American tv in France with a VPN
Watch the Daily Show for free on Comedy Central with a VPN

Your very first step is to pick a server in the United States on your VPN. Once you’re connected, click one of the TV channel icons to enjoy some free shows.

You likey won’t be able to watch the most recent shows for free but you still have free access to older shows.


Peacock is an ad-supported streaming service from NBCUniversal that lets you watch movies and TV shows for free. When you are tired of the ads, you can switch to Peacock Plus (ads-free) for $10 a month.


Tubi is Fox’s ad-supported TV platform and it has a selection of over 35,000 movies.

Premium IPTV Services

You can stream most of the American live TV channels with a subscription service. Since there are many IPTV services, I will talk about the most popular ones.

Sling TV

Sling TV is an American TV service that offers a monthly subscription. Like Netflix, Sling TV has different packages for one up to four simultaneous devices. You can install the Sling TV app on your TV, Amazon Firestick, Chromecast or Roku. Sling TV is one of the most affordable IPTV services, starting at $35 a month.

YouTube TV

YouTube TV is a paying streaming service that lets you watch live TV from major broadcast and cable American networks. For $65 a month, you can watch over 85 channels like PBS, Comedy Central, MTV, and Nickelodeon. YouTube TV app can be installed on many supported device and your membership can be used on six accounts.

There is a free trial if you want to check it out. You need a VPN to use YouTube TV from overseas.

Hulu + Live TV

Add live TV to your Hulu subscription to include ESPN+ and Disney+ and many more channels.

Hulu + live TV gives you access to over 75 TV channels

Apple TV+

For $5 a month, Apple TV+ is a good deal and you can watch Apple Originals for a (Netflix) change. Apple Tv doesn’t have a lot of content yet but the quality is worth a try (try Severance from Ben Stiller!). Your region works with your Apple ID. If you still use the Apple ID you created in the United States, you have access to the American selection of movies without any VPN. There is a seven day free trial, check it out!

Fubo TV

If you’re into live sports, Fubo TV might be a good option for you, although an expensive one at $69 a month.

Direct Tv Stream

At $69 a month, Direct TV Stream (previously AT&T TV Now) is also quite an expensive option. There is a five-day free trial if you want to see if it’s worth the price.

VOD Premium Services in France

Let’s take a look at which video-on-demand services with American content are available in France.

Amazon Prime Video

You need to create a new French Amazon Prime account if you want to have products delivered to France (you might cry because of the shipping costs if you don’t). Your French Amazon Prime account gives you access to the French Prime Video catalog. The movies you are allowed to watch are determined by your Amazon Prime membership and using a VPN will not give you access to extra streaming, unfortunately.

Amazon Prime CHANNELS is an additional service that gives you access to specific TV channels such as OCS.


Unlike Amazon Prime, Netflix lets you use the same account worldwide. Your U.S. subscription still works in France but the movie selection is different. You can easily access the U.S. catalog with a VPN. Simply pick a server in the United States on your VPN and voila!


You cannot sign up with Hulu in France unless you use a VPN. Hulu offers a bundle with Disney+ and ESPN+.

Peacock Plus

Peacock Plus starts at $10 a month. Try it for free first to figure out if it’s worth the price. Peacock premium plans include live sports and events.


If you’re under twenty-six, you are in luck as you can get a subscription to MyCanal at half the regular price. MyCanal is a French subscription TV and VOD platform that offers seven Canal+ channels: Canal+, Canal+ cinéma, Canal+Grand écran, Canal+ séries, Canal+ sports, Canal+ Docs and Canal+ kids. There are different bundles available at various prices depending on your interests.

You can watch some Disney+ movies with a $20/month subscription.

French VOD platform Canal+ offers exclusive access to Disney+
French Canal+ offers a Disney+ package subscription


Starting at $10/month, OCS is a French TV network that offers four TV channels: OCS max, OCS choc, OCS city and OCS géants. OCS also offers streaming services with many American series. It has a French exclusivity on HBO series and movies.

OCS has HBO exclusivity in France
OCS has HBO exclusivity in France

Enjoy your HBO access while it lasts because HBO exclusivity contract with OCS finishes at the end of 2022.


HBO max is not in France yet but it is supposedly coming to France in the very near future, fingers crossed. You can still access it through a VPN for now. This is what I get when I try to sign up in France without a VPN.

American streaming services restrict their access to servers inside the United States

And this is what I get when I sign up in France with the help of a VPN.

a VPN unlocks restricted access to American streaming services
A VPN successfully unlocked my restricted access to HBO Max

HBO Max start at $10 a month and has a great selection. You can also watch HBO Max as an add-on to Hulu.

Watch British Television in France

If you are interested in watching British TV, you can use a free satellite TV service like Freesat or Freeview to receive Free-to-Air channels. To receive satellite TV, you need to have a satellite dish professionally installed or use your existing dish if you already have one.

Both Freesat and Freeview give you access to over a hundred british channels (BBC channels and more).

I hope this article helped you find American shows you’ll enjoy watching in France. Why don’t you go ahead and share your favorite series with us on the forum?

Nathalie Nahmani

About Nathalie Nahmani

Nathalie is the creator of ma French Life. She moved back to France after living in Los Angeles for 20 years. She writes practical articles to help expats in France. Nathalie lives with her family in the French Alps near Grenoble.

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