How to watch Euro 2024 legally without £169.50 TV Licence

England fans
-Credit: (Image: (Image: PA))


The much-anticipated TV event of the summer is set to be England's opening match against Serbia in Euro 2024, with viewers eagerly tuning into their screens and streaming platforms.

The broadcasting rights for Euro 2024 are shared between BBC and ITV, due to a government mandate that requires UEFA European tournaments to be aired on free-to-air terrestrial television channels. This is why Sky has never been able to secure the rights to broadcast the Euros or the World Cup.

England's first match against Serbia on Sunday, June 16 will be available on BBC One and BBC iPlayer. The subsequent matches against Slovenia and Finland will be broadcasted on ITV1 and ITVX.

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But what if you want to watch these games on BBC or ITV without a TV Licence?

Legally, a TV Licence is required to watch any live TV on any channel. This means that without a TV Licence, it would not be possible to legally watch England's Euro 2024 games live from home, reports the Express.

Recording the game to watch later or watching it on catch up on BBC or ITV is also not allowed. However, there are some completely legal alternatives to watch Euro 2024 games if you don't have a TV Licence:.

Head to the pub

If you don't have a TV Licence, simply go to a pub or bar that is showing the game. Not only is this completely within the rules, but it also supports your local businesses, providing them with a much-needed boost after the challenging past few years.

Pubs have been granted special legal permission to extend their opening hours for the Euros, with establishments permitted to serve beer until 1am, instead of the usual 11pm last call.

Find a friend

If you're without a TV Licence, there's no law preventing you from watching the match at a friend's house who does possess one. As long as they aren't setting up an outdoor cinema and charging admission, it's completely legal for someone with a TV Licence to invite friends over to watch a game, regardless of the guests' legal status concerning a licence.

Be a student

Interestingly, there is a loophole that allows students to watch live TV without a TV Licence. Typically, even students are required to have a TV Licence at their residence, including each individual flat if they have separate door numbers.

However, students whose parents or guardians have a TV Licence can watch live TV and BBC iPlayer on a smartphone, tablet or laptop that isn't plugged in or charging at the time, without needing their own Licence. Strangely, the rules state that if the device is 'powered solely by its own batteries', you can legally watch live TV on it while you're away at halls or uni, provided your parents have a TV Licence at home.

Senior citizens aged 75 and over receive free TV Licences. If you have a senior citizen over 75 living at home, they won't be required to pay for a TV Licence, saving £169.50.

What about YouTube?

Some individuals attempt to circumvent TV Licence laws by viewing Euro 2024 matches on YouTube. However, this remains unlawful as the law stipulates that any live TV on any platform, including YouTube, is subject to the TV Licence.

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