The world of online streaming services just keeps getting bigger – and new kid on the block, Disney+, is following the growing trend of offering exclusive deals to entice subscribers. There’s just one problem: it’s only available in 5 countries (which will become 10 by the end of March 2020).
That doesn’t mean you can’t become a subscriber and start watching right away, though. We’ll show you exactly how to do so, no matter where you are in the world!
What is Disney+?
There’s a good chance you already know the answer. But just in case you stumbled across this post because the Google algorithm is giving unrelated results to your original search term…
Disney+ is basically Netflix for Disney content. Some believe that – even though it’s only recently been launched – Disney+ is likely to be the streaming giant’s biggest competitor.
The principle is the same: you sign up for a Disney+ account and get to stream its library of shows, movies, and original content.
Of course, unlike Netflix, Disney+ has a major focus on content owned by Disney. Which is no small amount, mind you.
In addition to the hundreds of movies and shows Disney has produced over the company’s history, the conglomerate also owns Lucasfilm (so the Star Wars franchise), ESPN (with an 80% stake), Pixar, Marvel, and The History Channel (50% equity).
Here’s an infographic from TitleMax.com showing the huge number of companies Disney currently owns:
The only one that seems to be missing is 21st Century Fox, which Disney owns the majority share of.
To be fair, not all of these companies’ content will be available on Disney+. But Pixar’s library is confirmed to be included, as is Star Wars, the Marvel Studios films, and The Simpsons. Disney has been pulling this content off of other streaming service so they can offer it exclusively on Disney+!
Where is Disney+ Currently Available?
At the time of writing, Disney+ is only available in Australia, Canada, the Netherlands, New Zealand, and the US. The service was launched simultaneously in Canada, the Netherlands, and the US, with Australia and New Zealand following a week later.
But everything’s in the works for France, Germany, Italy, Spain, and the UK to join those ranks on March 31 2020. It’s uncertain which countries will be added next, or when, but there are reportedly plans for Disney+ to become available globally within 2 years.
Until then, subscribers are limited to the handful of countries already listed.
How Do I Watch Disney+ From Anywhere in the World?
The geo-location blocks Disney put up work by reading your IP address, which tells them where you’re trying to connect from.
Unless you use the method we’ll be introducing in this post, if you try to connect from a country where Disney+ isn’t available yet, you’ll get the following screen instead:
You could try logging in if you have a Disney+ subscription… but it won’t do you any good (even if you already paid).
So what do you do if you don’t want to wait up to 2 years for your favorite Disney-owned content to become available in your country? Or, for that matter, if you want to keep watching while traveling abroad?
You use a Virtual Private Network – or VPN for short. Get up to speed with our VPN for beginners guide.
Step 1: Choose Your VPN
If you don’t already have one, you need to purchase a VPN subscription. For Disney+ aspirants living outside of the available countries, you’ll need to do so before signing up for the streaming service.
We get it, though: the VPN industry can be a little daunting as a newcomer. There are so many VPN technical terms you don’t know the meaning to, not to mention the sheer number of VPN providers currently available. Which should you choose?
Don’t worry – we can help with that!
The first thing you should know is VPNs aren’t created equal. Some, like PureVPN, will sell you out to the highest bidder. Others, like the free Opera VPN, are fake.
But there are plenty of good VPNs available. They just cost a little more, but will protect your online privacy and – more to the point – mask your location by changing your IP address.
That last bit is the important one if you want to watch Disney+ from anywhere in the world. By connecting to a VPN server located in a country where Disney+ is available, you can trick the system into letting you in (if you have a subscription, of course).
As far as we know, it isn’t confirmed that Disney+ will be using the same kind of anti-VPN proxy detection technology as its competitors. However, it’s a safe bet to assume the streaming service probably will – and some users have already reported getting proxy errors.
This makes it even more important to choose the right VPN, as only some can get through that software.
Our top recommendations for VPN services that will most certainly work with Disney+ are as follows:
This isn’t to say these are the only VPNs that will work with Disney+. But they are our top 3 recommendations, not only for streaming but as among the best overall VPN services too.
Step 2: Sign Up for Disney+
Obviously, you can’t stream Disney+ content without a subscription!
If you live in Australia, Canada, the Netherlands, New Zealand, or the US, then you don’t have to wait until you have a VPN to do so. Ditto if you live in France, Germany, Italy, Spain, or the UK and don’t mind waiting until the end of March.
But, as previously mentioned, if you live anywhere else in the world, you’ll need a VPN first.
We recommend signing up for a US-based Disney+ subscription, as this makes paying a lot easier. Which sounds strange considering you need a US credit card (or a Verizon Unlimited, Fios, or 5G account, in which case you can get a year’s subscription for free).
However, there’s an easy workaround: using your smartphone.
After connecting to a US server via your VPN, create a new Google account, complete with a new email address. Then head over to Amazon and buy yourself a Google Play Gift Card.
Disney+ costs $6.99 per month for US subscribers, so a $25 gift card (the minimum available) will get you 3 months. Alternatively, you can spring for a $75 gift card instead, as a year’s subscription to Disney+ costs $69.99 in the US.
Make sure you send your gift card to your new email address, not your normal one! You’ll need to redeem the gift code to your new Google account. Simply search for a valid US ZIP code (it especially helps if you know which city the VPN server is in, but this isn’t absolutely necessary) to use when prompted.
Once that’s done, launch your Google Play Store app and register the new account. Log in using it before installing the Disney+ app.
Now all you need to do is create a subscription. Go ahead and take advantage of the 7-day free trial too! So long as you use your new Google account to sign up, your gift card will automatically be redeemed as payment.
The process here is almost the same as for Android users, only instead of a Google Play Gift Card, you’ll be purchasing an App Store & iTunes Gift Card from Amazon.
Next, register a new App Store account using your newly created email address and log in. Head to your profile to redeem the gift card before installing the Disney+ app.
Click on “Start Free Trial,” choose a subscription, and create your account. It’s as simple as that!
Disney+ promises to be an exciting new addition to the world of online streaming – even if it is frustrating that all of these services have exclusive content.
But thanks to our guide, you won’t have to wait up to 2 years to be able to watch Disney+ from anywhere in the world!