How to Watch the Olympics without Cable or Satellite
The 2018 Winter Olympics officially start on Thursday. If you’re like many people, you’ve given up your cable or dish satellite subscription to save money which means you have to come up with another viewing configuration to watch the Olympics.
Never fear. There are a handful of ways that you can still get your Olympics fix without starting up a cable subscription and without breaking the bank.
First off, all Olympics coverage is brought to you by NBC which will broadcast the Olympics on NBC, NBCSN, CNBC, MSNBC, and USA Network.
Here’s how you can watch the Olympics without cable or satellite:
Use an antenna to get NBC in HD for FREE over the airwaves.
There are a TON of events scheduled to broadcast right on NBC, but you’ll most likely need a high quality antenna to get a solid signal.
This is the antenna we use and it’s been working perfectly for us for over five years (and it will ship in two days with Amazon Prime).
NBC is broadcasting events throughout the day (you can see a full schedule of NBC’s coverage HERE). Almost all the events on NBC will be recorded, so you’re not watching much of anything live with this option.
This is a great option if you are a casual Olympics watcher or if you do not have internet service in your home.
Stream online with the NBC Sports App.
You can watch events through NBCOlympics.com and the NBC Sports App but you’ll need to log into an existing TV provider account. Full access is only available to people who subscribe to the NBC paid channels “through a participating cable, satellite or telco provider that includes NBCSN.”
This means you need to log into an existing cable or satellite account or one of the streaming options listed below.
Stream the paid NBC stations through a paid streaming service.
While you’ll be able to watch some Olympic events on NBC, there are hundreds of hours that will be broadcast on the NBC pay channels. For the first time, there are several options that will allow you to stream Olympics coverage for a relatively small amount of money.
Fubo carries all the NBC cable channels you need to watch the Olympics (including the Olympic Channel) plus my local NBC station (KGW in Portland — you’ll have to check the channel’s list to see if your local NBC affiliate is included).
Fubo works with your existing streaming device (Roku, Amazon Fire TV Stick, Apple TV, Chromecast, or your smart TV system), on your Apple or Android phone (just download the app), or your computer.
You can get a FREE 7-day trial of Fubo HERE and then pay $19.99 for your first month. There are no contracts, so you can cancel after the Olympics and only pay $20 total.
Sling carries all the NBC streaming channels so you can watch all the Olympics you want (plus other non-Olympic broadcasting channels) with the Sling Blue package for $25 a month. The Sling Orange is $20 but doesn’t have any of the NBC sports channels.
Sling works with your existing streaming device (Roku, Amazon Fire TV Stick, Apple TV, Chromecast, or your smart TV system), on your Apple or Android phone (just download the app), the XBOX One, or your computer.
You can sign up to get a FREE 7-day trial of Sling TV HERE but make sure you select the Sling Blue package. You can add additional channels including the premium channels to your free trial, but note that you get to pay for them once your trial is finished. You get to stream on three devices with Sling Blue.
You can get the Olympic Channel for an additional $10 a month after your trial, but it doesn’t have any actual event coverage so I would skip it.
There are no contracts, so you can cancel your subscription after the Olympics are finished and only pay $25 total.
Other Streaming Services
There are a number of other streaming services that will allow you to stream the Winter Olympics:
Hulu with Live TV ($39.99/month after your free trial)
PlayStation Vue ($44.99/month after your free trial)
YouTubeTV ($35/month after your free trial)
All of these offer a FREE 5-7 day trial, but the monthly price after the trial is more than Fubo or Sling. So, unless you’re already a subscriber, I would do Fubo if you only want to pay for one month or Sling if you want to continue getting the channels after the Olympics are finished.
Our family already has Hulu with Live TV so we can watch Portland Trailblazer games (Sling doesn’t offer the specific channel we need), so we’re going to stick with Hulu to watch the Olympics.
You can get a FREE two-week trial of Hulu Plus HERE if you just want to give Hulu a try without the live TV component.
If you want to watch the Winter Olympics for free, you need an antenna and you’ll be limited to what your local NBC station broadcasts.
If you want more coverage and options, you’ll pay $20 with Fubo (sign up for your free 7-day trial of Fubo HERE). Just remember to cancel your membership if you don’t want to continue with the streaming service after the Olympics are finished.
Make sure you read our big guide on how to ditch cable and still watch your favorite TV shows HERE.
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