In the UK, everyone who records or watches live on any channel on television or an online TV service must have a TV license. Currently a telly license costs £159 for a year and the price keeps hiking year by year.
I personally haven’t been paying for a license for the past 4 years and have a TV. You may be wondering why and how I’ve managed to avoid the fee. There’re still people believing they’ve got to pay, just for having a telly in their home, even if it’s not in use. Some people are not aware that they don’t need to pay for a license, yet still pay out of fear. Those aggressive TV licensing letters threatening with a £1000 fine can be very scary, especially for elderly people.
Let’s have a look how you too can legally avoid paying for a TV license and still watch movies and shows!
When do I need a TV license?
You need a license to watch or record any live television on any channel such as BBC, ITV etc., no matter what device you are watching it from. With internet streaming at our fingertips, live broadcast can be viewed not only from TVs but also on mobiles, tablets, laptops, PCs, games consoles such as Xbox and Playstation etc.. Therefore you’ll still need a TV license even if you don’t have a television and still live stream on other devices.
Even if you intent to record a live broadcast from any channel to watch later, you’ll need to be covered by a TV license.
Do I need a TV license to watch Netflix or other online streaming services?
You can also watch anything on demand or catch up without a TV license on services such as ITV Hub, All 4 and MY5 except from BBC iPlayer.
How I legally watch movies without a TV license
I generally don’t watch much TV. If I do decide to watch a movie, documentary or a TV series, I tend to watch them on Netflix or Amazon Prime Video. Since I’m generally very busy, I don’t get the chance to watch TV often. Hence watching things on demand instead of broadcast live works out perfectly for me.
Since Thrifty Baby Yasmin loves watching kids movies and programmes, I’ve set up a kids profile specifically for her on both my Netflix and Amazon Prime Video accounts. This can keep her entertained without watching something live on TV. By not watching live, it has also saved me a lot of money.
If you are sure that you too don’t need a license, I highly recommend to make a declaration. This then will stop TV licensing sending you numerous threatening letters. The No License Needed (NLN) declaration then lasts for 2 years. After this period, you may want to reply if your viewing habits have not changed.
What happens if I don’t pay for a TV license ?
If you watch live TV, you’ll need to pay for a TV license. However if you got caught watching TV without a licensece, you could get fined up to £1000. The maximum fine in Guernsey is £2000.