How To Watch Your Favourite TV Shows As You Travel
For some people, travelling can be a chance to get away from the TV. For others, it can be the perfect chance to catch up – those long flights and lazy hotel evenings could be the perfect time to finally binge through those TV shows you've been planning to watch.
But just how do you watch your favourite TV shows as you travel? First of all, you'll need a tablet, a laptop or a phone. From here, there are a few different options for accessing your favourite shows on the go. We've tried to stick to legal options here (no dodgy online streaming sites). Check them out below.
Download them before you go
Internet access is improving around the world, with many countries now offering free public Wi-Fi. However, there are times when getting connected isn't so easy. Some remote areas may not have free public Wi-Fi and using hotel Wi-Fi may require you to pay a fee. Meanwhile, you generally can't access the internet on a plane.
Even if you do get connected, there's also the issue of content restrictions. Some countries don't allow you to stream certain content. For example, Netflix content varies from country to country.
Downloading TV shows before you go could allow you to stream them offline. This allows you to stream your favourite shows wherever you are, whether it's during your flight or camping on a mountain.
You can download TV series through the likes of iTunes and Amazon to stream offline. Alternatively, if you have a Netflix account, you can download TV shows from the app to view offline.
Consider using a VPN
While downloading shows can be a solution, these files can take up a lot of space on your devices. The likes of Netflix may also not allow you to watch content in other countries where it is restricted even when it's downloaded onto your device! As soon as you connect to the local internet, you could find that your downloaded files become blocked.
Fortunately, there are legal ways to get around these content restrictions. One solution is to learn how to change IP address. A VPN (virtual private network) can help you to do this. VPNs help to conceal your data while connected, which not only allows you to watch content from around the world, but also keeps your connection secure from potential hackers.
VPNs are cheap to use and can be downloaded onto any device. Be wary that some countries have banned VPNs (largely countries where internet freedom is heavily restricted like China and Russia). However, in most countries, this is not the case.
Invest in a portable internet connection
A VPN may help you to stream the content you want, but what if you can't get a good internet connection? As mentioned already, there may be some places where you can't get public Wi-Fi. In fact, you may not even be able to use your mobile data in some very remote areas.
A portable internet connection could be one way to keep you connected. There are a few types of portable internet connection that you can use. One is to use a hotspot on your phone (although this does require you to have data coverage). Another option is to invest in a portable router – these are pocket-sized routers that you can connect all your devices to. Finally, there's the option of renting a satellite internet hotspot for those very remote locations. In all cases, it's worth comparing fees to see how much you'll be paying.
Go old-skool with DVDs
Before smartphones and tablets, portable DVD players were the way to go. You can still buy these machines online (or, if your laptop has a CD player, you can use this). Meanwhile, many classic TV series are available as DVD box sets.
This option clearly has its downsides: DVDs are expensive to buy and could take up a lot of luggage space, plus you won't be able to buy many new or ongoing series. However, you don't have to worry about having an internet connection. If you're looking to view a classic series, it's often one of the best options. Just be wary that certain DVDs may not be allowed into certain countries with strict censorship laws.