HBO Max is only a few days away from launching, and whilst US viewers can get excited for all the shows and films on the way, international viewers will sadly miss out on this new streaming giant that has the likes of Friends, the Studio Ghibli movies and the DC catalogue.

Fortunately, there are ways to watch US streaming sites. We’ve managed to find workarounds for the likes of Hulu, The CW and Netflix US – through using a VPN.

Here’s how you can access HBO Max from the UK. We also recommend taking a look at how to watch HBO Max for free, and the differences between HBO Max, HBO Now and HBO Go.

Watch HBO Max using a VPN

Please note that we haven’t yet tested this method, we are recommending it based on our experience of accessing HBO Now from the UK. We will update this article on the launch date (27 May 2020) once the platform goes live.

Whilst pre-sign ups are now live on the HBO Max website, you won’t be able to open the website on your normal UK browser due to the site only being available in the US. However, this is easily overcome through the use of a VPN.

Having a VPN (virtual private network) allows you to change your IP address so you can browse the internet as if you’re based in another country. For HBO Max, you would need a US server. For the best performance and pricing we recommend either NordVPN or ExpressVPN. You can also take a look at our list of the best VPNs for HBO Max.

Once you’ve chosen your VPN, you’ve got past the first hurdle of watching HBO Max. The next will likely be when you need to input your payment information.

Billing information for HBO Max

For the next step, you’ll need the HBO Max app. This isn’t available yet, but should launch on 27 May 2020 to coincide with the full launch. Again, we’ll update this article to confirm the steps once we’re able to. 

Once you’ve signed up for your VPN of choice, you’ll need to download it on either your iOS or Android device. The HBO Max website currently only allows you to sign up on early bird if you have a payment card that’s tied to the US. If you don’t have that, here’s the steps you should be able to take after the launch date:

  • Launch your VPN on your iOS/Android device and connect to a US server
  • Create a new Apple ID/Google Play account in your browser that’s tied to the US (leave phone number and country blank)
  • Register your new account on your iOS/Android device app store
  • You should now have access to the US app store – download the HBO Max app
  • Create a new account with your email address and password
  • Use Paypal as your method of payment (this can be a UK account)
  • Once your account is verified, you can sign in from any device

You should now be able to watch HBO Max as if you were in the US, providing you have a VPN on the device you’re using

As always when using a VPN to access content abroad, be aware that you’ll be in violation of HBO Max’s terms of use, so the company could theoretically cancel your account if it realises you’re using a VPN. Proceed at your own risk.