How to Watch Top Gear Online with a VPN

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The British motor vehicle review show, Top Gear, has been running for decades. This BBC mainstay first aired in 1977 and through a format revamp in 2002, is still going strong to this day. It is now the most widely-watch factual TV show in the world, with re-broadcasting occurring in 212 countries.

The show doesn’t export around the world in its original format. It needs to be dubbed or subtitled for foreign-language markets and its content has to be checked and edited to ensure that it complies with the legal requirements of each jurisdiction.

The presenter most closely associated with the show is grumpy hothead, Jeremy Clarkson. Other past presenters include Friends star, Matt LeBlanc. Today, the show still achieves top ratings and is up to season 28, led by Chris Harris, Paddy McGuinness and former cricketer Freddy Flintoff.

Watch Top Gear online

As Top Gear is a BBC show, the BBC iPlayer is the place to go in order to watch the show live or to stream previous episodes on catch up. The library of the iPlayer currently makes seasons 24 to 28 available online.

The BBC iPlayer is free to access. However, videos will only play when requested by web users who are located in the UK. The accessor also has to set up an account and be the owner of a TV license.

The UK TV licensing system is going through a lot of controversy at the moment and many people have chosen to opt-out of the system. Such people would be severely fined if they get caught accessing the BBC iPlayer. So, many people have difficulties in accessing Top Gear online through the BBC.

Where else to watch Top Gear

Netflix also carries old episodes of Top Gear. These are the classic seasons of the show that feature firebrand Jeremy Clarkson, who fell out with his BBC producers and walked over to Amazon Prime, where he now makes The Grand Tour.

Netflix carries seasons 7 to 26, so the binge-watching opportunities of this library are epic. However, if you don’t have a Netflix subscription and you would rather watch the show anonymously on the BBC iPlayer, there is a solution.

A VPN can get you into the BBC iPlayer without them knowing who you are or where you are. So, if you are not in the UK, you can make it seem that you are by accessing the BBC website through a VPN server that is in the UK. When you first turn the VPN client on, you need to choose a server to connect to. The VPN system that you join will give you a list of server locations, so you need to make sure you choose a location in the UK to get full access to the iPlayer.

If you are an anti-TV license protester that lives in the UK, you can still access the BBC iPlayer without the BBC finding out who you are. By using a VPN, your connection is untraceable.

Access to the iPlayer requires an account. However, this is free to set up. You will need an email address to which you have access because the account set up process requires email verification. However, you can create a free online email account with Outlook, Yahoo, or in order to satisfy this requirement without having to use your regular email address. You will need to give a valid postcode in the UK. However, just search for any business in the UK and give the postcode you see in their address. Once the account is set up and you have verified your email address, you will be asked whether you have a TV license. Just lie and click the Yes button.

How to stream Top Gear from outside the UK with a VPN

  • Set up an online email address
  • Subscribe to a VPN provider with US servers (such as ExpressVPN)
  • Download and install the VPN client onto your devices
  • Connect to a server in the UK
  • Go to the BBC iPlayer website in your browser
  • Click on Sign in on the top menu bar
  • Scroll down in the Sign In page to the Register now link
  • Fill in the forms over the next few pages giving your fake postcode and temporary email address
  • Go to your email account and open the new email from the BBC
  • Click on the button in your email to verify the address
  • Click in the search box in the top menu of the screen and search for Top Gear
  • Click on an episode you want to watch
  • Click the button to say that you have a TV license and watch the video

You might not be able to watch a video on the BBC iPlayer site because the BBC has recently tightened up its access detection systems. The next section of this guide will explain how to deal with that problem.

VPNs for Top Gear

The BBC iPlayer doesn’t just block access from outside the UK. It also scans incoming requests for signs of VPN protection and it blocks any of those access attempts. Very few VPNs can actually get into the BBC iPlayer.

You might find a free VPN. However, your chances of getting into the BBC iPlayer with it are very slim. You need a top quality VPN that has detection avoidance measures. The fact that people waste time and money signing up for VPNs that can’t get into the BBC iPlayer is the inspiration behind this guide. Check out our list of recommended VPNs for the BBC iPlayer so that you can get in and watch Top Gear anonymously from anywhere in the world.

Even very good VPNs sometimes get detected by the BBC iPlayer. If this happens. Close the BBC tab in your browser, disconnect the VPN, reconnect the VPN and open a new tab and go to the BBC iPlayer site again.

Our recommended VPNs for Top Gear

1. ExpressVPN

  • More than 3000 servers in 94 countries
  • Gets into HBO Go, Sky Go, Netflix, Disney+, BBC iPlayer, Hulu, and Amazon Prime Video 
  • No data limits
  • Gets past VPN detection systems
  • 30-day money-back guarantee
  • An allowance of three simultaneous connections
  • Good speeds for video streaming
  • $8.32 a month with the one-year subscription plan

2. Surfshark

  • More than 1040 located in 61 countries
  • Gets past regional restrictions on streaming services
  • No data caps
  • Ad and malware blockers for included for free
  • 30-day money-back guarantee
  • No limit to simultaneous connections
  • Fast speeds
  • Only $1.77 per month plus 3 extra months free on the two-year plan.

3. NordVPN

  • More than 5600 servers in 58 countries 
  • Six simultaneous connections per account
  • Unblocks Netflix, Hulu, Sky Go, HBO Go, ITV, and ABC
  • No bandwidth or download restrictions
  • 30-day money-back guarantee
  • 24/7 customer support
  • SmartPlay feature improves video transfer speed
  • Only $2.99 a month with the purchase of a 3-year plan

4. Cyberghost

  • More than 5600 servers in 90 countries
  • An allowance of seven simultaneous connections
  • No data throughput limit
  • Dodges detection at HBO Now, Hulu, Netflix, BBC iPlayer, and Disney+ 
  • Evades national internet censorship
  • 45-day money-back guarantee on annual plans
  • Good speeds for streaming
  • $2.75 per month with the 3-year subscription plan

5. IPVanish

  • More than 1300 servers located in 53 countries
  • Allowance of 10 simultaneous connections
  • Strong security measures
  • No data throughput limits
  • Evades detection at all major streaming services
  • 7-day money-back guarantee
  • Very fast speeds
  • Priced at $6.49 per month on the one-year plan.
Alex Grant

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