How to Watch Canadian TV in USA Using a Proxy Server

Most of the blocks, bans and filters online are based on your location. It’s slightly ironic that the internet was meant to bring us all together, yet most of the world’s media sites are working out ways they can block people from different locations.

how to watch canadian tv in usa

Anyway the vast majority of these sites simply look up your IP address when you connect before deciding if you watch or not. So for example to watch CTV the Canadian broadcaster, you’ll have to be based in Canada or connect from a Canadian IP address.   They may be close but it actually can be quite difficult to learn how to watch Canadian TV in the US, even when you’re just across the border!

Unfortunately it’s difficult to control your real address as this is assigned to you when you connect to  the internet by your ISP.  Although it will sometimes vary, it will always be linked to the country you are connecting from.  However if your address is not registered as a Canadian one then you can forget being able to watch Canadian TV online live streaming, it simply won’t happen.

Fortunately, you can hide your real IP address by connecting via an intermediary – often known as a proxy or VPN server.  So for example if you want to know how to watch Canadian TV from anywhere you just need to use a VPN provider with a Canadian based server.

How to Watch Canadian TV in USA

Anyway the easiest way to see how it’s done is to watch this short video.


That’s all there is to it. Using a program like NordVPN means you can swap your IP address with a click of the mouse whenever you like. You can access these free streaming services anywhere in the world. Switch to a Canadian one for CTV, then back to a US address for Hulu followed by a British IP address for the wonderful BBC iPlayer.  Whether you want to stream Canadian shows or open up a global range of entertainment, it’s just a matter of clicking on the right country and hiding your location obtained from your internet service provider.

If you want to do it for free, you’ll need to find a free Canadian proxy you can use and modify your browser settings to use it instead. It’s not hard to do but unfortunately it’s difficult to find the servers, proxies and VPN servers are very expensive things to run.

You can try it out by checking out  the NordVPN Discount Page  – Give it a try and enjoy  CTV, BBC iPlayer, Hulu or whatever you need to check it works for a few dollars – for the price of a coffee and sandwich you’ll be impressed I’m sure!

2020 Update and How to Watch CBC Online in USA

Over the years since this post was first written there have been some changes in how you can access online content in different countries, especially for some reason Canadian TV channels. There are a few issues, including many sites blocking well known proxy IP addresses and instigating other counter measures to enforce their geo-blocking.

Some of these are methods which do stop you using proxies for example when the site requires validation of your cable subscription/viewer number. Of course, no proxy will enable you to bypass this, although if you do have a friend or acquaintance in Canada who will lend you theirs it’s certainly solvable. Other sites have made access subscription only removing their free content and introducing a paid plan only.

This means that there are some Canadian TV sites which can be difficult to access from the USA or anywhere outside Canada. However plenty do still work and a decent VPN like NordVPN will still allow access to many. For example I’ve just double checked CBC and that still works fine although you do have to now create a free account to watch on CBC Gem. This is very easy to do and all you need is to input a valid Canadian postcode into your details, there are plenty of sites who can produce this or just copy a valid Canadian address from somewhere.  Much of their content is only available on their premium subscription although you can upgrade to this if you’re using a VPN to access.

It is important to check whether the TV stations you need are available online and whether their accessible with your chosen VPN.  NordVPN does have plenty of Canadian servers so doesn’t get blocked easily but if you’re trying to access a site which is restricted by cable account numbers it won’t actually help you on it’s own.  Service in other countries for the most still work fine, certainly all the UK ones like the BBC iPlayer still stream perfectly with NordVPN although many VPN providers are indeed blocked.

So check out the subscription first (they have a 30 day money back guarantee) or on whatever VPN service you select, there’s still loads of Canadian TV channels easily accessible  from the USA or the rest of the world, but it’s best to check first.

A Proxy Now isn’t Enough Canadian TV – CTV

I first started watching Canadian TV online a few years ago, for a couple of reasons – first a few of my friends went to live there and kept telling me how great it was.   The second was because the biggest channel CTV.CA, had some great shows which weren’t available on other online channels in the UK.  One of my favorites was called Ice Pilots about this company who flew across the Artic and you could only get it on the Canadian History channel for some reason.

I was able to watch it by selecting one of the Canadian proxy servers in my subscription to Identity Cloaker.   I don’t think that many people used the Canadian proxies, as they were always seriously fast and streamed video without as much as a stutter.   This worked by routing my connection through the Canadian proxy server which meant I appeared to have a Canadian IP address and so didn’t get blocked.

Used to work like a breeze –

This is what happens now –

candianproxy-ctv

You need to login to your Cable provider before getting access to the live streaming section of CATV, which means that a proxy is not enough any more or indeed hiding your IP address like this. It’s an interesting development and the first time I’ve seen this method used anywhere to stop geo-blocking avoidance techniques. Most companies are not actually that bothered about VPNs and proxies as long as they are seen to be doing something to block them, but perhaps this might herald a change in attitude.

The BBC for example only do single checks at the beginning of the programme which means that you can effectively disconnect the proxy after you’ve started and it will still work. They don’t currently do any real checks and blocks and even a simple proxy will work with BBC iPlayer.