Can Roku Devices Be Used Internationally? (Holiday, Traveling etc)

Roku sticks and boxes have become enormously popular streaming devices in the last few years with a huge library of on demand and live content. In fact, they’re so useful that it’s a common thing for users to want to take them abroad when traveling/on vacation/visiting others. But can you do this? Will a Roku device work in different countries?

A Roku device should work in any country, but access to content on certain apps may be limited due to regional content rights restrictions. Using a VPN or setting up another Roku account in the new location may be a better options.

In other words, yes, you can at least connect and use a Roku device pretty much anywhere in the world, but expect less (or at least different) content availability in many countries. You might not get the functionality you get when using it at home.

Let’s dive into the issue in more detail.

Countries That Roku Is Officially Supported In

Let’s start with the easier examples of countries that Roku devices are officially supported in:

  • United States
  • Canada
  • France
  • United Kingdom
  • Germany
  • Argentina
  • Brazil
  • Chile
  • Colombia
  • Costa Rica
  • El Salvador
  • Guatemala
  • Honduras
  • Mexico
  • Nicaragua
  • Panama
  • Peru

This doesn’t mean that you can necessarily access the same apps and content catalogues in all of these countries. It just means that the app is pretty much guaranteed to work in these countries, and there’s more support offered for these countries in terms of local apps/channels.

But if you’re traveling to any of these countries, you should be able to plug in/connect your Roku device, connect to a local network, and at least get some kind of functionality and content access, even if it’s not what you can get at home.

In all other countries, it may work, but expect far less accessibility in terms of content/apps.

Content Accessibility May Be Limited Using a Roku Abroad

In general, it is advised to not expect to be able to access all the content you can normally access on all your Roku apps when traveling abroad. A large amount of them will be blocked, or restricted.

Here are some apps you can expect to be blocked or heavily restricted when traveling outside the country the account was set up in:

  • Amazon Video (may get a basic content library or no access at all)
  • Hulu
  • Netflix (content library may be restricted)
  • Disney Plus
  • HBO Max
  • Most other content streaming apps that are only available in specific countries, or have differing content catalogues in different countries.

Expect different apps to be available in different countries when using Roku abroad

Checklist When Traveling With Roku Devices

Here’s a quick checklist of things to pack or note down when traveling with a Roku device:

  • Roku remote (the Roku app on your phone can act as a backup remote if needed)
  • An acceptable Wi-Fi connection in the place you’re staying (need at least a couple of Mbps to stream properly)
  • New batteries for battery operated Roku devices
  • Login details for various apps like Netflix if not already saved.

Best Roku Apps To Use When Traveling

Here are some recommended apps to use when traveling with a Roku device – ones where you can still get a good use out of them even when abroad (source here):

  • YouTube – Should work fine pretty much anywhere, with loads of content available, even if it’s not so big on movies.
  • Netflix – Again should at least work in many countries, but actual content catalogues will vary from country to country. But that may not be a bad thing – you can try out some different shows you might not normally get in your home country (subtitles are usually available).
  • News Channels – Most international news channels should still stream fine like CBS, BBC World, CNN etc.
  • Tubi – Reported to work mostly fine abroad, with a very strong movie catalogue still available.
  • Popcornflix  – Again reported to have a decent movie library that worked fine abroad. You can find a good older film from a few years ago on here to watch on a quiet night.

Setting Up A New Local Roku Account

When running into this problem of content availability in different countries, it’s often advised by Roku Support to set up a new Roku account in the new country you’re in, and then link that to your Roku device, for best content availability.

Here are the quick steps to do this:

  1. Create a new Roku account here in the country you’re in.
  2. Once set up, factory reset your Roku device
  3. Connect your new local account to the reset Roku device.

Can You Use A VPN To Access Content On Roku?

Another potential way around this problem is to use a VPN with your Roku device to access content from abroad, but it does involve a lot of messing that users might now want to be bothering with, especially on vacation.

Basically, because of how Roku devices work, you’d have to install a VPN on the router in your new location, which would then route all traffic (including the Roku Device’s) through the servers/location you select and  potentially make it appear as though you’re still streaming from home.

To do this, you need a more reputable, advanced VPN service like ExpressVPN or NordVPN which can be installed now just on devices but routers as well (see here for a guide), and go through some setup to get it ready. These VPNs are also not cheap (although you can buy monthly plans for shorter trips abroad), and it’s important to not break any rules regarding content rights/restrictions when streaming abroad.


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