12 Of The Best Alternatives To Sky TV – Cut That Expensive Subscription

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At Generation Money our purpose is to help you make better financial decisions. All of our articles are independently written and/or edited by finance professionals and adhere to strict editorial guidelines. This post may contain links which, if clicked, could result in a payment to the site. These links never impact our editorial policy and all rankings and product recommendations remain unbiased. For more details, read how this site is financed.

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Alternatives to Sky TV

With household finances being squeezed, cutting your TV bill is one of the obvious steps to save some money every month. This is my guide to the best alternatives to Sky TV which could save you some money.

Ditching Sky TV or Virgin Media doesn’t mean you’ll lose out on watching great content that you’ll enjoy. The rise of streaming services means that there are plenty of cheaper alternatives to the traditional TV subscriptions like Sky, Virgin Media and BT.

Free TV services, such as Freeview, also offer lots of channels – at no monthly cost. 

Top 3 Alternatives to Sky TV

You can read the full list of our cheaper alternatives to Sky TV below. But if you’re in a rush, here’s our top 3 picks for the best cheaper alternatives to Sky TV and Virgin Media:

  1. Amazon Prime Video – Massive content library of TV shows, films and, increasingly, live sports to choose from. You also get Amazon Prime delivery which is great if you regularly shop at Amazon. £8.99 per month.
  2. Netflix – Also has a huge amount of content, including lots of original TV shows and films. Now offers a ‘Basic with ads’ package for £4.99 per month, otherwise up to £15.99 a month for premium.
  3. NOW TV – A much more flexible way of watching Sky TV. It comes without a long contract and allows you to add or remove packages easily, such as Sky Sports, movies and entertainment. Prices depend on which packages you choose.

Read on for a roundup of the best alternatives to Sky TV, or skip ahead using the links below.

Best Alternatives to Sky TV

Freeview

What is it?

Freeview is a digital TV service that you don’t need to pay a monthly subscription for and comes with lots of channels. 

These include comedy channels, like Dave, as well as movie channels such as Film4 and Great Movies. So you may not miss that Sky Movies package too much if you switch to Freeview as you’ll still have a decent choice of movies to watch.

Including radio channels there are over 100 channels now on Freeview, including HD versions of terrestrial TV channels – BBC1 HD, ITV HD etc.

How much does it cost?

There’s no monthly fee or charge for watching Freeview! However, older TVs will need a Freeview box, which costs around £40-50, to enable Freeview. But that’s a one off price to pay so there are no further costs, making Freeview a good, cheap alternative to cable/satellite TV.

Most new TVs now come with Freeview built in, though, so you just need to connect to an aerial to get started.

Who is it for?

Freeview is best for you if you really want to save on monthly subscription costs. If you want a good basic range of channels to watch for free, then Freeview is the lowest cost alternative to Sky TV.

But, there’s not so much in the way of sports channels included with Freeview. So if you love watching sports you might prefer one of the alternatives to Sky TV that still has sports included. Keep reading to find out which alternatives to Sky include sports below.

Amazon Prime Video

What is it?

Amazon Prime Video is the streaming service you can access as an added benefit to being an Amazon Prime member.

On the platform, you can watch anything labelled with ‘Prime’. There is a lot of great content included in your subscription, and if you want to watch something in the premium content (which is almost anything), you could rent or buy it for a few pounds more. 

How much does it cost?

Amazon Prime Video is one of the best value streaming alternatives to Sky TV. It only costs £8.99 a month, which gives you access to Prime Video, Amazon Music and free next day delivery.

You don’t need to sign up for a minimum term contract, and you can cancel your subscription at any time. You can also get a 30-day free trial to test it out. Just remember to cancel if it isn’t for you.

Plus, if you’re a student, you can get 6 months for free, then it’s only £3.99 per month.

Right now, you can get a 30-day free trial of Amazon Prime with no commitment. Click here to sign up for your free 30 day Amazon Prime trial!

Who is it for?

There is truly something for everyone on Amazon Prime. There’s a lot of content, which does take some sifting through, but the quality is high. 

Plus, it often shows different sports, like the English Premier League football matches. So if you’re looking for an alternative to Sky TV to watch football now and again, this is a good choice for you. 

Netflix

What is it?

Netflix is one of the most popular streaming platforms out there. It offers a huge range of TV shows and movies to please everyone. Netflix is super easy to use, which is one of the reasons people love it. 

How much does it cost?

Plans range from £6.99 to £15.99 a month. You don’t need to sign up for a minimum term contract, and you can cancel your subscription at any time. The more you pay, the more devices you can have on your account.

Who is it for?

Netflix has something for everyone. It offers a wide range of genres, from romcom to horror. Netflix also lets you set up different profiles for different people in your household, so each profile will be recommended content suitable for them and what they’ll enjoy based on the content they’ve watched before. 

Netflix is an excellent alternative to Sky TV if you have kids, as you can set up a kids’ profile only to show kids’ content.

While Netflix has a vast library, one of its biggest downsides is that it doesn’t offer very new content unless it’s Netflix’s own stuff. So, if you’re looking for a film that has recently been released, you might need to wait a while until it comes on Netflix.

However, if TV shows are more your thing, then Netflix is a great choice for you. Netflix exclusively hosts some of the biggest TV shows, like Money Heist or Schitt’s Creek. 

Apple TV+

What is it?

Apple TV+ was released in 2019, and it hosts a range of original, exclusive content, like The Morning Show, starring huge names like Jennifer Anniston and Reese Witherspoon.

It doesn’t offer as much content as Netflix or Prime Video, but the TV shows and films on it are high-quality and carefully selected for the platform. 

How much does it cost?

The great thing about Apple TV is that you can get a 3 months for free if you buy (or have recently bought) any Apple product, like a new iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, Apple TV or a Mac.

After that (or if you don’t have a new Apple product), it only costs £6.99 per month. You can also get a 7-day free trial to test it out. 

You don’t need to sign up for a minimum term to get Apple TV+, and you can cancel anytime.

Who is it for?

Apple TV+ has a lot of exclusive content, as well as well-known and popular movies and TV shows like Euphoria or The New Normal.

So if you’re looking for content that isn’t available on other platforms, Apple TV+ is a good streaming alternative to Sky TV for you. It doesn’t, however, currently offer any sports. Unless you count Ted Lasso as a sports offering!

Britbox

What is it?

Britbox is a streaming service offering popular and classic British TV shows from BBC, ITV and Channel 4. It’s now wholly owned by ITV after the BBC sold its stake in the streaming service in March 2022.

How much does it cost?

Britbox costs £5.99 per month. You’re not locked into a minimum contract time, and you can cancel at any time.

It also offers a 7-day free trial to try it out first.

Who is it for?

Britbox is a great choice if you, or anyone in your house, loves classic British TV. But it does also have lots of newer content.

You may be thinking that it seems a little silly to pay for content that you can get for free on their own services like iPlayer, ITV Hub and 4OD. But if you’re like me, and you find the abundance of adverts infuriating, then Britbox is a great alternative to Sky TV.

Disney+

What is it?

Disney+ has seen a lot of success since launching in March 2020. It offers a huge range of content, and despite being one of the newer streaming services on this list, it’s grown massively since launch. This no doubt driven by its massive back catalogue of Disney content. This inludes mega franchises such as Star Wars and the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

Disney+ has regained exclusive rights for a lot of content since its inception, which has affected what is available on other streaming platforms. For example, Netfix used to produce Marvel related content but no longer does now that Disney has its own streaming service.

How much does it cost?

Disney+ is also great value, costing only £7.99 per month, which is similar to its big competitors like Netflix or Prime Video. You can also save more money by paying the annual fee, which costs £79.90, saving around £16, or 16% vs 12 months at the monthly price.

Who is it for?

Disney+ offers different ‘channels’ within it, so there really is something for everyone. The app also allows for different profiles, so you can have separate kids, teens or grown-ups profiles. 

It’s a great choice for kids since of offers the full catalogue of Disney movies and TV shows. You can also set up pins so that kids can’t access inappropriate content. This is standard on many streaming platforms though, but necessary for those that offer such a wide range of content. 

Plus, you can watch all the Marvel movies, Pixar movies, and the whole Star War franchise exclusively on Disney+.

Paramount+

What is it?

A relatively recent entrant to the UK, Paramount+ opened to UK subscribers in June 2022. It’s owned by Paramount Global which also owns Channel 5 in the UK, and the famed Paramount Studios.

This means that it has an extensive collection of movies and TV shows to choose from, including the Star Trek franchise. 

In the US, Paramount+ offers a range of live sports too. So although the UK Paramount+ service is focused on movies and TV shows for now, it could look to add live sports in the future for its UK subscribers. This would help to make it a good alternative to Sky TV if you’re a sports fan. 

How much does it cost?

You can sign up for £6.99 a month and cancel anytime. Or you can pay £69.90 upfront for a year, saving £13.98 vs paying monthly. 

There’s also a free 7 day trial available to everyone.

Who is it for?

As it’s a relatively new streaming service in the UK, Paramount+ is best suited to those who really want access to its extensive back catalogue of movies and TV shows.

These include big names such as Star Trek, Transformers and Mission: Impossible. Having said that, their offering is a little thinner compared to the likes of Netflix and Amazon Prime. 

However, Paramount+ is currently investing in original content and is likely to produce more original TV shows over time.

Google Chromecast

What is it?

A Google Chromecast is a small device that you plug into your TV and allows you to stream TV shows and movies from the app to your TV. 

You can watch lots of free content like BBC iPlayer, 4OD or YouTube on a Chromecast. 

There are over 1,000 mobile apps you can stream to your TV with a Chromecast.

How much does it cost?

The Google Chromecast has a one-off cost of £30-40 to buy the device, depeding on the model. You don’t need to sign up to anything to use a Google Chromecast. It also offers a range of movies and TV shows that you can rent for small costs.

Who is it for?

The Google Chromecast allows you to stream easily to your TV. If you’re looking for a cheaper alternative to streaming sites or a Smart TV, this is a good choice as an alternative to Sky TV. 

Viaplay (Previously Premier Sports)

What is it?

One of the main reasons people are often reluctant to give up their Sky TV is because of the sports. There are very few alternatives that offer the same sports to watch. 

But you can buy Viaplay on its own, which obviously won’t be as expensive as paying for the whole Sky TV package. 

You won’t get Premier League football, which is usually the main reason for a Sky Sports subscription, but there’s a lot of other sport on offer. This includes La Liga, German and Italian Cup football as well as Rugby and Motorsports. It also includes BoxNation at no extra cost which is great for boxing fans like me.

How much does it cost?

The cost of Viaplay is £14.99 per month. You can sign up for a monthly subscription and cancel anytime. Alternatively, you can save money (20%) by signing up for the annual plan.

Unfortunately, it doesn’t offer a free trial, but it’s pretty upfront on what it offers, so you know what you’re getting when you sign up. 

Who is it for?

It goes without saying that Viaplay is the perfect choice for sports lovers who don’t want to pay the full price for Sky TV.

Any boxing fans will also love that BoxNation is included for free.

Amazon Fire Stick

What is it?

The Amazon Fire Stick offers over 7,000 apps and games. You can use Alexa’s voice control to access lots of content and apps like Prime Video, Netflix, Disney+, Now TV, BBC iPlayer and pretty much any other streaming service you could think of. 

It also allows you to watch live TV like Sky News or Eurosport. 

How much does it cost?

The Amazon Fire Stick costs a one-off of around £40. You don’t need to sign up for anything to use an Amazon Fire Stick.

Who is it for?

You don’t need anything but a TV to use an Amazon Fire Stick. You can watch free or live content, so you don’t need to pay for anything else.

You also don’t need to be a Prime member to use an Amazon Fire Stick, but it would open up a lot of content if you are. You can also use it in conjunction with any other Alexa devices you have. 

Now TV

What is it?

Now TV is an excellent alternative to Sky TV as they offer much of the same content. They also offer a few different packages so you can customise yours to suit you. There is the Entertainment package for TV shows, the Movies package and Sport packages. You can sign up for a monthly or daily sports pass.

Now TV offers really high-quality TV programmes and films. 

How much does it cost?

Now TV has different packages for different content. Customising your subscription means you will only pay for what you actually want to watch. 

You can cancel any of the Now TV packages whenever you like, and you don’t need to sign up for a minimum term contract. 

The costs of the Now TV packages per month are:

  • Entertainment (TV shows): £9.99
  • Movies: £9.99
  • Sports: £33.99

Now TV offers a lot of discounts and deals on their packages. For example, they often offer 40% off deals, so you can grab the sports package for £20 for a month. 

You can also save money if you sign up for more packages. So, if you wanted both the Entertainment and Movies package, you would probably get them cheaper than what you would get them for individually. 

Who is it for?

Now TV offers really high-quality TV programmes and films. For example, it’s the only streaming platform that offers HBO TV shows in the UK, like Game of Thrones or Sex and the City. It’s clearly a little more expensive than some of the other streaming platforms, but the TV shows and movies are hard to compare. 

It also offers Sky Sports packages by the month, which is a flexible way of getting your sports fix. So if you’re a sports fan, it’s got a good combination of TV, movies and live sports to watch.

It’s still a great alternative to Sky TV since its cost is much less than a full Sky TV package and you’re not locked into a long contract. Even if it’s a little more expensive than some of the other streaming platforms.

TV Player

What is it?

TV Player is a collaboration of lots of different channels, like Discovery+, MTV and lots of others. It offers a wide range of documentaries and other content. You won’t be able to find most of their content anywhere else. 

Some users complain that its usability isn’t up to par with some other streaming services, but it offers a huge range of shows.

How much does it cost?

TV Player costs £6.99 per month. Or you can sign up for their yearly plan for £69.99 to save around £14. 

You don’t need to sign up for a contract with TV Player, and you can cancel your subscription at any time.

Who is it for?

If you love documentaries, reality TV and cooking shows, you’ll really enjoy TV Player. 

Just beware that it doesn’t offer much in the way of TV shows or films, but what it does do, it does very well.

Which is the Best Alternative to Sky TV?

The best all-rounder alternative to Sky TV is Amazon Prime. It has a host of TV shows and movies as well as live sports including live Premier League football. For £8.99 a month it also includes free next day Prime delivery on Amazon purchases.

For value for money, Netlfix is the best with its ‘basic with ads’ service. It’s only £4.99 a month, but you will have to sit through ads. Overall though, Netflix has a ton of content including lots of original TV shows and movies.

For sports fans, Now TV is the best option. This allows you to sign up for Sky Sports on a monthly basis so you’re not locked in and you can watch most live Premier League games. Now TV also has entertainment and movies options, so you can customise your bundles.

I’d recommend you explore any free trials offered by these Sky alternatives before signing up. Then you can try before you buy and decide which one is best for you.

It’s also worth considering that if you were paying more than, for example £20 per month, for Sky TV or Virgin Media, you can combine some of these alternatives and still save money. Amazon Prime and Netflix together come in at £12.99 per month for the basic options, for example.

Anything Else To Consider Before Ditching Sky TV?

A consideration to make before leaving Sky or Virgin Media is if you have broadband with them and what happens to it if you leave. Check your contract details and see if you can keep broadband only and how much that would cost. You may want to consider switching broadband supplier if it becomes more expensive without a TV package bundled in with it.

You should also check if you’re still tied in to a minimum term in your Sky contract. You may have to wait until closer to your contract expires to cancel more easily and without cost.

As I mentioned above, it’s a good idea to make use of the free trials available before signing up to one of the above streaming services. And don’t forget, with these alternatives to Sky TV there are no minimum contracts so you can leave them anytime.

FAQs

Can you get Netflix on Sky?

Yes, all Sky TV packages have the option of adding Netflix. If you’re signing up to a Sky TV package, you can get Netflix Premium for £8 a month extra, which is cheaper than signing up for it through Netflix directly.

Can you get Amazon Prime on Sky?

Yes, you can now watch Amazon Prime Video on Sky Q, Sky Glass or Sky Stream.

Can you get Sky TV without a satellite dish?

Yes, Sky have recently launched two options that don’t require a dish. The new Sky Stream works over wifi and requires a small box, similar to Now TV. Sky Glass is a TV set that comes with built-in Sky TV and also works over wifi. Both require a contract subscription.

Can I get Sky Sports on Freeview?

No, not that the moment. You’ll need a Now TV pass to watch Sky Sports without signing up to a contract.

How do I cancel my Sky subsciption?

You can cancel by using the cancel service on Sky’s website. Or you can call to cancel over the phone. If you call to cancel, you’ll often be offered a discount or some other offer to stay.

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