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How to watch ESPN online with a VPN without blackouts


Since there are blackout restrictions, even users who subscribe to ESPN and ESPN+ via cable TV or compatible Internet connection can only view ESPN whilst in the USA. However, a VPN can help you bypass any blackout or geo-restrictions and stream ESPN online – regardless of your location.

This works because a VPN masks your real location, allowing you to unblock region-locked streams. So sports fanatics who love spending the night watching NBA, MLB, or NHL games can watch ESPN outside the US.

But it’s worth mentioning that not all VPNs will work, as ESPN actively blocks some of them. In this article, we’ll take you through the list of best VPNs for ESPN and show you how to watch it from anywhere in the world.

How to watch ESPN from anywhere

Why do you need a VPN to watch ESPN?

ESPN is available in many countries all over the world. However, some of the most popular live sports content is only available on the US channel.

ESPN unavailable

So here are the main reasons why you need a VPN to watch ESPN:

  • Circumvent region-based ESPN restrictions in the US. Even in the US itself, there are often regional blackouts that stop people in particular parts of the US from watching live games. As such, you will need a reputable VPN to access the specific branch of this network if you are in the wrong part of the US.
  • Bypass ESPN blackouts while traveling. Additionally, ESPN is not available for people who are outside of the US. So if you’re on holiday or a business trip and don’t want to miss the next big sports game, a VPN can help you watch the matches even when you’re abroad.
  • Get access to other popular streaming services. In a nutshell, a VPN helps to bypass geo-restrictions put in place by multiple streaming services. A VPN will change your virtual location and make it look as if you’re using the Internet elsewhere. This means that you’ll be able to access Netflix US and other regionally restricted content.
  • Improve your privacy and security. VPNs provide numerous security benefits. These include data encryption, split tunneling, and a kill switch to secure your browsing activities and help prevent ISP tracking.

Best VPN to watch ESPN online

  1. NordVPN – all-time best VPN for ESPN
  2. Surfshark – top-class and affordable ESPN VPN to watch sports
  3. IPVanish – fast and secure ESPN+ VPN
  4. Atlas VPN – great VPN for watching ESPN online
  5. PureVPN – solid ESPN VPN with many features

There is a wide range of VPN services available on the market. To help you decide which is best for you, we’ve compiled a list of our favorites below.

1. NordVPN – best VPN for ESPN

🌎Based in:
Panama
🖥️Servers/countries:
5500+ servers in 59 countries
🍿Unblocks Netflix:
Yes
🔥Coupons:
NordVPN coupon 68% OFF

NordVPN is the best VPN for ESPN and ESPN+. It has over 5500 servers around the world – almost 2000 of which are in the USA. This ensures you’ll have a wide choice of servers to connect to when watching ESPN.

NordVPN promises super fast speed and comes with unlimited bandwidth. This makes it ideal for streaming live sporting events. The service also incorporates extra security features like a 256-bit AES encryption, a customizable kill switch, and a double-hop VPN which routes the connection through two VPNs instead of one.

Want to give it a try? NordVPN costs from $2.99/month for 6 simultaneous connections and comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Learn more about this provider in our full NordVPN review.

2. Surfshark – fast and secure VPN to watch ESPN

🌎Based in:
The Netherlands
🖥️Servers/countries:
3200+ servers in 100 countries
🍿Unblocks Netflix:
Yes
🔥Coupons:
Surfshark coupon 84% OFF

Surfshark has over 3200 servers in over 100 countries – including the USA. The service has decent speeds, which makes it suitable for watching live streams without buffering. Surfshark also lets you connect as many devices as you like.

The VPN has plenty of security features in place to keep you safe. With 256-bit encryption, your real IP is always hidden, and there is added protection against DNS, IPv6, and WebRTC leaks. You can even sign up anonymously and use cryptocurrency to pay.

Surfshark is cheaper than many of its competitors with prices starting from $2.05/month for unlimited simultaneous connections. It has apps for iOS, Windows, Android, and Linux.

Read more about this VPN in our detailed Surfshark review.

3. IPVanish – excellent ESPN VPN with many servers

IPVanish banner
🌎Based in:United States
🖥️Servers/countries:2000 servers in 50 countries
🍿Unblocks Netflix:Yes
🔥Coupons:IPVanish coupon 71% OFF

IPVanish is another great VPN for ESPN that offers a wide server selection in the US and other regions. During our tests, it delivered speedy services with the WireGuard tunneling protocol that are suitable for watching sports online without any interruptions.

In terms of security, this VPN offers military-grade AES-256 encryption, an independently audited no-logs policy, as well as DNS, IPv6, and WebRTC leak protection. On top of that, you get a kill switch to protect your data if you encounter Internet connectivity issues.

The pricing starts from $3.19/month for unlimited simultaneous connections. Even though it might seem quite steep, IPVanish includes a 30-day money-back guarantee with each subscription that you can use for a full refund.

Find out more about this VPN in our IPVanish review.

4. Atlas VPN – good VPN offering a free version

Atlas VPN banner
🌎Based in:United States
🖥️Servers/countries:750 servers in 38 countries
🍿Unblocks Netflix:Yes
🔥Coupons:Atlas VPN coupon 85% OFF

Atlas VPN works well with ESPN and even offers a free version with access to two locations in the US – Los Angeles and New York. Thus, you can first try unblocking ESPN for free before commiting to a paid plan.

With the premium version, we’ve used the WireGuard tunneling protocol and managed to enjoy seamless live stream experiences. Also, there are great security features included, like DNS, IPv6, and WebRTC leak protection or the Tracker Blocker.

You can get all of these perks from $1.64/month and use Atlas VPN on as many devices as you need to watch ESPN as it gives unlimited simultaneous connections. If you change your mind, there’s a 30-day money-back guarantee option.

Learn more about this provider in our Atlas VPN review.

5. PureVPN – feature rich VPN for ESPN

purevpn
🌎Based in:
British Virgin Islands
🖥️Servers/countries:
6500+ servers in 78+ countries
🍿Unblocks Netflix:
Yes
🔥Coupons:
PureVPN coupon 87% OFF

PureVPN is a solid VPN for streaming ESPN. It offers a massive list of 6500 – and this includes 13 US locations, going all the way from Seattle to Miami, and New York to Los Angeles.

In our testing, it managed to stream content in super-high definition – no doubt, thanks to the advanced WireGuard tunneling protocol, helping to achieve both maximum security and maximum speed.

PureVPN uses a 256-bit AES military grade encryption, and comes with an integrated kill switch. There are apps for Windows, macOS, Android, and iOS – and you can use PureVPN on up to 10 devices at the same time from $1.49/month.

Find out more about this provider in our PureVPN review.

Best streaming services to watch ESPN live without cable

Shows on ESPN

The good news is that you don’t need cable TV to watch ESPN. In fact, you can learn how to watch ESPN without a TV provider because there are several streaming services that show live ESPN. For that, you will only need to get a VPN to unblock streaming platforms if you’re living in a restricted region.

Here is the list of streaming sites that show ESPN content:

Streaming serviceESPN channels
Sling TVESPN, ESPNU, ESPNews, ESPN Goal
Fubo TVESPN, ESPN2, ESPN3, ESPNU, ESPNews
Hulu TVESPN, ESPN2, ESPN3, ESPNews, SEC Network, and ACC Network
VidgoESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU, ESPNews, ESPN Deportes

With any of these streaming services, you can watch ESPN through the web, mobile smart devices, and TV-connected devices such as Apple TV, Amazon Fire Stick, and Roku. By using your Internet connection and these streaming services, you can stream and watch the same ESPN as that airing on cable TV.

Many of the streaming services will also let you access ESPN’s streaming app – which brings all the ESPN branded channels together. This includes premium content from ESPN+ – if you are a subscriber. If you can’t access ESPN via cable, we recommend trying one of these great VPNs for streaming.

How to watch ESPN on your device

The way in which you watch ESPN will vary depending on your device. In this next section, we’ll share instructions for watching ESPN on some of the most popular devices:

Watch ESPN on your PC (Mac, Windows)

  1. Pick a VPN with lots of US servers (We recommend using NordVPN).
  2. Download your VPN and create an account.
  3. Choose a US server and connect to it.
  4. Subscribe to a streaming service that shows ESPN.
  5. Open the ESPN stream and start watching!

Watch ESPN on your phone (Apple, Android)

  1. Choose a VPN with US servers.
  2. Download your VPN and create an account, then choose a US server and connect to it (We recommend NordVPN for phone users).
  3. Head to the app store or Google Play Store and download the free ESPN app.
  4. Open the app then click on Settings and Login to your ESPN account.
  5. Once logged in, return to the home screen.
  6. Hit the ESPN+ logo, choose a stream, and enjoy!

Watch ESPN on streaming devices

  1. Download a VPN with lots of US servers, and connect to a US server (We recommend using NordVPN).
  2. Subscribe to a streaming service that shows ESPN.
  3. On your streaming device menu, navigate to Search and click OK.
  4. Enter the name of the streaming service you subscribe to in the search bar.
  5. Select the streaming service and click OK, then select Add Channel, and press OK on your remote.
  6. The app is now installed on your device! Open the app and enjoy ESPN.

Watch ESPN on gaming consoles (PS3, PS4, PS5)

  1. Download and install a VPN with US servers, then connect to a US server (We recommend NordVPN).
  2. Start the ESPN app on your playstation and click the settings gear.
  3. Select subscriptions and click subscribe, then login.
  4. Note down the activation code and head to http://espn.com/activate on your computer or mobile browser.
  5. Enter the activation code on your browser and click continue.
  6. Login to your ESPN account or create a new one. Your subscription is now linked to your playstation!

How to bypass ESPN TV provider from your country

ESPN is geo-blocked and unavailable for audiences outside of the US. Even users who subscribe with cable TV can only view ESPN when in the USA. Fortunately, you can use a VPN to bypass ESPN TV provider geo-restrictions and stream it online – regardless of your location.

Not all VPNs work because ESPN actively blocks some of them. In the next section, we’ll show you how to watch ESPN without a TV provider from a variety of locations:

How to watch ESPN in Canada

To watch ESPN in Canada, you’ll need to use a VPN with US servers. Here is a quick guide to help you:

  1. Install a VPN for ESPN. Our top choice is NordVPN.
  2. Connect to a US server.
  3. If you haven’t already got an ESPN account, you should sign up using a US address.
  4. Alternatively, you can sign up to a streaming service that shows ESPN.
  5. Click on Get Started and begin streaming ESPN in Canada.

How to watch ESPN in the UK

To watch ESPN in the UK, you’ll need to download a VPN that has American servers and is capable of bypassing geo-restrictions. For that, follow these instructions:

  1. Get an ESPN VPN. We recommend using NordVPN.
  2. Find and connect to a US server.
  3. Head to the ESPN website and enter a US zip code when creating an account.
  4. Alternatively, you can sign up to a streaming service that shows ESPN.
  5. Begin streaming ESPN in the UK.

How to watch ESPN in Europe

To watch ESPN in Europe, you will need to pick a reputable VPN to circumvent region-based restrictions. For that, follow our instructions:

  1. Install a VPN with servers in the US. A great option for this is NordVPN.
  2. Establish a connection to a US server.
  3. Create an account on the ESPN website and use a US zip code.
  4. You can also sign up to a streaming service that shows ESPN.
  5. You’re ready to stream ESPN from anywhere in Europe.

How to watch ESPN in Australia

In Australia, ESPN is available as part of Foxtel iQ’s pay TV Sports HD pack. If you’re not signed up to this, you’ll need to do the following:

  1. Get a VPN that has plenty of servers in the US, like NordVPN.
  2. Once installed, connect to a US server.
  3. Login to ESPN or a streaming service of your choice.
  4. Find a stream of your choice and start watching ESPN.

Can’t access ESPN with a VPN?

Sometimes, you may find that you are unable to watch ESPN online – even if you have a VPN. Below, we’ve listed issues that can pop up when trying to watch ESPN:

  • Your streaming service has blacklisted the servers used by your VPN.
  • The GPS location of your device and the IP address are not the same.
  • Your actual IP address is leaking.
  • The streaming service has upgraded its geo-blocking protocols and your VPN isn’t working any longer.
  • You have cookies on your device that are letting the streaming service know you’re not in the US.
  • The VPN you are using isn’t capable of unblocking the streaming service.

If met with any of these issues, you can try the following solutions:

  • Contact customer support for your VPN and check to see if the server you’re using unblocks the streaming services that you need.
  • Try a different browser and clear your cookies.
  • Search for the leak protection setting on your VPN and enable it.

If your VPN isn’t working after all, it’s likely that you are connected to a server that is geo-locked by the streaming platform you are using. To fix this issue, you probably need a better VPN.

Unblock ESPN with NordVPN
With approximately 2000 servers in the US and exceptional unblocking capabilities, NordVPN can help you easily access ESPN from anywhere in the world. Also, it includes robust security features to protect your online activities.
cybernews® score
4.9 /5

How to watch ESPN for free with VPN

While it’s possible to watch ESPN with a free VPN, it’s not necessarily a good idea to do so! Firstly, free VPNs are more likely to be blocked by streaming services than reputable VPNs. This means that many free VPNs will be unable to bypass the geo-restrictions put in place by ESPN.

Even if your free VPN does work, it will be a lot less secure than a paid one. Unfortunately, many free VPNs make money by selling customer data to third parties. However, you can try Atlas VPN as it is a safe exception.

Another alternative to a free VPN is using the free trial or the 30-day money-back guarantee of a premium VPN. You’d be surprised how affordable they can actually be. Here’s a quick comparison of the premium VPN prices, free trial options, and features included:

  • NordVPN – enjoy its 5500 servers in 59 locations to watch ESPN and get top-class security features, like AES-256 encryption, a kill switch, and more. The prices start from just $2.99/month and you can try it risk-free with the 30-day money-back guarantee. Alternatively, there’s a free 7-day trial for Android users.
  • Surfshark – get a stable connection and fast speeds when watching ESPN, as well as advanced security and privacy. Subscription prices start from as low as $2.05/month with the 30-day money-back guarantee included. In addition, the provider offers a free trial for Mac, iOS, and Android users that you can enjoy for up to a week.

What can you watch on ESPN?

ESPN is an American multinational cable sports channel owned by ESPN Inc. It was founded back in 1979 and it broadcasts largely from studio facilities in Connecticut.

The service is one of the most successful sports networks around. It is available to almost 95% of all households with paid television in the United States, and it broadcasts in more than 200 countries.

ESPN covers some of the most diverse sporting events on the Internet. You can enjoy up-to-the-minute sports coverage, commentary, and highlights. Also here are some of the most popular sports events you can watch:

EventSport
NFLAmerican football
US OpenTennis
NBABasketball
ICC T20Cricket
MLBBaseball

Bottom line

If you’re a sports enthusiast and live outside the US, ESPN channel is unfortunately unavailable to you. However, using a top-class VPN can help you bypass geo-restrictions and watch popular sports events on ESPN from anywhere in the world.

NordVPN is our best VPN for ESPN since it has numerous US servers, blazing-fast speeds, and user-friendly apps. It’s also capable of unblocking streaming sites that show ESPN content if you don’t have cable.

Have you already tried unblocking ESPN with a VPN? Share your experience with us in the comments below!


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