Does BBC iPlayer Work in Ireland

For a weekend trip to Dublin when the FA CUP is on, this is a crucial question – does BBC iPlayer Work in Ireland!  Now the corporation may have lost most of the premium football games, but they still have the FA Cup, Match of the Day and regional football broadcasts.  So although it’s great to watch some top of the table Premiership clash on Sky, for the average football fan like me who unfortunately supports a team outside the Football league it’s a lifeline.

How to Get BBC Iplayer from Ireland

My favorite Saturday would be a trip to the wonderful city of Dublin, a few quiet beers and retiring to watch Match of the Day and then the BBC News at my hotel.  Which should be easily accomplished using the BBC website, except it doesn’t work in Ireland at all.   In this post-Brexit, border building world – for some reason Ireland is considered a foreign country and BBC license payers are blocked from watching British TV from there.  If you took a TV and a powerful aerial, perhaps you could watch it on the roof of your hotel but the convenient web streaming version is inaccessible.

It’s something to do with licensing I suppose, however I think a little slack should have been applied to our closest neighbour.  Although interestingly, you can’t watch RTE’s (Ireland’s national broadcaster) web content from the UK either.   Fortunately it’s only blocked by the tediously annoying IP addressing region locking which seems to be used all over the web.

That is if you don’t have a UK IP address then you can’t access BBC iPlayer and the live streams.  So you just have to pretend you’ve got a UK address and you’ll be fine – here’s how it’s done:

The video will show you how to get BBC iPlayer in Ireland or any other country outside the UK for that matter.  The technique is fairly straight forward, you just relay your internet connection through a UK based server.  This fools the BBC site into thinking you’re in the UK and everything works fine.  Unfortunately the server needs to be really fast and configured securely so that it can’t be detected but there is a growing industry in VPN service providers who can supply these.

It’s worth getting a VPN service that has servers in other countries too, because you’ll find this irritating behaviour happening all over the place especially in the popular online media sites.  It’s also incredibly common on sites like YouTube aswell where videos can be specified to play only in certain countries.

So that’s it, you can travel and enjoy British TV online just use a VPN service to trick them.  It’s not illegal, or breaching copyright as European rules state that streaming media is not the same as buying or downloading it.   Needless to say the BBC don’t like you doing it much and do block loads of these services regularly but if you choose a decent secure one like Identity Cloaker then you’ll be fine.