How to get (almost) a year of free streaming
If you try out all the free trials streaming services offer, you can stream for nearly 12 months without paying a cent.
As the cost of living increases, with everything from power prices to interest rates on the way up, it would be nice to have access to some free streaming, right? Well, Finder's got you. While you might not want to (or can even afford to) pay $10, $20 or more a month for streaming, we're offering you a way to get nearly a year of free streaming.
How? It's easy, follow the free trials. We calculate that of all the free trials we could find currently out there, you could have 345 days of free streaming. That works out to be just a tick under a year.
What's the catch? Well, for a start you'd need to be completely new to these streaming services. So if you're already a subscriber to some of these services or have previously used them, you'd need to shave a few days here and there off the list. Also, you'd need broad interests to take full advantage of this. Like, very broad. We'd strongly recommend you be into sport as well. If sport is not your thing, you'd get off early on the free ride by 107 days, but you'd still get nearly 8 months at no cost. Anyway, strap yourselves in to see how you can have a free ride for a year.
How can I get free general entertainment streaming?
While the big guns of streaming such as Netflix and Disney Plus don't offer free streaming trials, there are a lot of services that do. The most generous streaming free trials in this category belong to Stan and Prime Video, which both offer 30 days for nothing. The latter also gets you the benefits of Amazon Prime like free or expedited shipping, exclusive deals, free reading, free music and more.
Recent highlights of Prime video include season 3 of superhero hit The Boys, James Bond film No Time to Die and nearly all other Bond movies, and miniseries Conversations with Friends. On Stan you could look out for the first part of Better Call Saul's last season and Hacks.
Also generous with 14 days for free is BINGE. This service is good to investigate especially if you like HBO content such as recent originals The Staircase and The Time Traveler's Wife. Foxtel's streaming service Foxtel Now offers a 10-day free trial, and it has similar content to BINGE. Some things are exclusive to Foxtel Now though, such as the recent documentary Gamestop: The Wall Street Hijack.
There are a good number of streaming services that offer a week-long free trial. Paramount Plus offers a 7-day free trial and it's home to the Star Trek universe as well as South Park, including their exclusive specials. Apple TV Plus also offers the same length for a free trial, where you can watch recent drop For All Mankind and Academy Award Best Picture winner CODA. Starzplay, MGM and AMC+ also have free trials for a week.
Free streaming days so far: 119
How can I get free special interest streaming?
While the above mentioned streaming services have a wide variety of shows on offer, many only offer niche programming and only focus on a single genre. For fans of British shows for example, BritBox offers a 7-day free trial, as does Acorn TV if you sign up for the first time. If you like documentaries, iWonder offers a 14-day free trial, likewise for DocPlay.
If horror doesn't scare you, check out Shudder with its 7-day free trial. For films curated by lovers of the art form, you can get MUBI for a week at no cost. For those who'd like a double dose of anime, you can access Funimation and its 14-day free trial, with the same for Crunchyroll. These 2 services will soon merge though, so take advantage of the separate trials while you can.
LGBTQ+ streaming service OUTtv and Love Nature, offering stories from our natural world, are 2 more services offering a week's free trial. If you want to stream over 25 global and local news channels in 1 place, then take advantage of Flash's 14-day free trial. Finally for more reality than even a Kardashian could keep up with, hayu offers a 7-day free trial.
Free streaming days so far: 238
How do I get free sports streaming?
Here's where your free ride could come to a grinding halt if you have no interest in sports. But, if you dig the smell of the leather, the sound of a crack on willow or more, then you can keep on trucking to get nearly a year of free streaming.
You can also get a 14-day free trial on beIN SPORTS CONNECT. It features general sports like ATP and WTA tennis events, some international football leagues and more.
There are a lot of specialty streaming services that focus on only 1 sport too. FITE Plus offers events from boxing, MMA, pro wrestling and other combat sports. Plus there is Golf TV, UFC Fight Pass, NBA League Pass, NFL game pass, AEW Plus – all streaming services for their respective sports/organisations and all offering 7-day free trials. Impact Plus focuses on wrestling and comes with a 30-day free trial.
While not specifically sports streaming services, keep in mind that other previously mentioned entertainment services have sports content. Paramount Plus has the A-League and FA Cup for example, Prime Video has Australian swimming events, Apple TV has baseball and Foxtel Now has access to multiple sports channels.
Free streaming days in total: 345
Here are some final tips for free streaming
We've obviously mentioned a lot of streaming services, so how would you go about starting your free streaming experience? Well, we've got some tips that might help you along the way.
- Know what you like and plan your free trials around what content you might want to watch. Have a date for when your favourite TV show is streaming? Plan to get your free trial in that week so you can binge it. Or, if you follow a particular sport, aim to have your free trial during its season so it doesn't go to waste watching sports you don't care as much about. Finder has plenty of guides on where to watch certain TV shows or sports, so do a deep dive on those before committing to dates.
- Some streaming services are only available as either Prime Video or Apple TV channels. That means you'll need to be subscribed to either Prime Video or have an Apple TV to watch. For example, AMC+, Starzplay and MGM are accessible via Prime Video channels. That means you'd need to be a member of Prime Video to access them. Keep that in mind when planning your free trial for those specific services.
- Subscribing to AMC+ also gets you access to Shudder and Acorn TV. So you could start a free trial there, suss out content on the other services, then you can hit the ground running when you start your free trial with the others.
- You get 3 months free of Apple TV Plus when you buy an eligible new iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, Apple TV or Mac. So that would add around another 84 days of free streaming! Of course you would actually need to shell out money for your new device, which kind of defeats the purpose of not spending a cent to get streaming. But, if you were already planning on upgrading, it could be good to co-ordinate to take full advantage of the offer.
- Foxtel Now and BINGE content will likely overlap. So, you can plan to watch them back to back, or maybe separate them depending on if you feel you need a break.
- Most importantly, remember to cancel your subscription before your free trial is up. Otherwise you will be charged and your free streaming ride will derail!
What else can I stream for free?
While we've given a bunch of options to access paid streaming services for free, there are ways you can watch movies and TV shows at no cost all the time, with no free trial time limits.
Firstly there are the streaming services of the free-to-air TV networks. ABC iView, 7Plus, 10play, SBS On Demand and 9Now are all available to watch for nothing, though the pay-off is you will have to view ads on all except iView. All that's required is to create an account. For 9Now for example, you can register an account here.
Another streaming service is Tubi, though again, its free price tag comes with you having to view ads.
There are other streaming services such as Kanopy or Beamafilm that are no cost to view as well. However, in both these instances you will need either a library or university membership card to take advantage. Plus, it will depend on if your local library or university chooses to participate, so they might not be as readily available to you.