How to Watch Internet Streaming Video While You're Abroad
You know what sucks? It sucks when you're abroad and craving a little TV episode catch-up or you're telling a new friend about a certain episode and can't pull it up on your computer because legal stuff keeps sites like Hulu, Comedy Central and Netflix from streaming there. Well, thanks to the magic of the internet, there is a way around it and it's called Hotspot Shield.
Credit for our discovery of Hotspot Shield goes to travel writer Paul Brady, who told us about it during a dilemma we had in London. While trying to watch a TV clip embedded on a site for a story, we were blocked by the Comedy Central out-of-country notice pictured above. Hotspot Shield fixed the issue and, since then, it's been our special secret passed on to frequent traveling friends.
A warning before we proceed further: we take no responsibility for downloads and this is not an official endorsement. We're just sharing a tip passed on from traveler to traveler who wants to catch the newest 30 Rock while relaxing after a day thousands of miles away.
The trick is to get Hotspot Shield (here's a link to the CNET review and download). It's free and only occasionally after install and use does an ad pop up, and even then it's for Hotspot Shield Elite. Still, after installation (works for both Mac & PC and we've had no problems with it on our Macs), restart your computer and fire up Hotspot Shield. On a Mac, the red shield in your taskbar turns green when it's activated. Hotspot Shield is a VPN and it hides your location. Thus, Netflix and other sites don't know that you're not in the United States.
Top Gear marathon while in a cabana poolside? It's now possible.
Update: Jaunted contrib Max Graham chimes in with his recommendation: "I use this to watch sports from the UK and found it much better than Hotspot Shield: hidemyass.com."