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From Hogwarts to Home: A Muggle‘s Guide to Streaming Harry Potter Movies

From Hogwarts to Home: A Muggle‘s Guide to Streaming Harry Potter Movies

As a longtime Harry Potter fan, I completely understand the craving to revisit J.K. Rowling‘s magical world whenever you need an enchanting escape. Fortunately, with the rise of streaming services, muggles no longer have to wait for acceptance letters from Hogwarts to watch Harry, Ron, and Hermione‘s adventures again and again.

However, knowing where to find the Harry Potter movies online can be trickier than mastering a Switching Spell. Due to complicated licensing deals, the streaming availability changes frequently across various platforms and countries.

In this extensive guide for superfans, I‘ll walk you through exactly where to stream all eight original films and the Fantastic Beasts prequels in 2023. I‘ll also cover how to use a VPN to access Harry Potter from anywhere, tips for purchasing the series digitally or on disc, and even free trial options.

So grab your wands, hop on your Nimbus 2000 brooms, and let‘s dive right into the magical world of streaming Harry Potter!

Where to Watch Harry Potter: Breakdown by Country

Due to licensing agreements varying across regions, the streaming access to Harry Potter shifts often. Here is where you can currently find the movies in the major English-speaking markets:

United States – HBO Max
As of 2023, HBO Max is the exclusive streaming home of Harry Potter in the US. All eight films from The Sorcerer‘s Stone through The Deathly Hallows are available to subscribers. The Fantastic Beasts prequel movies Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them and The Crimes of Grindelwald are also included.

United Kingdom – Netflix
After losing the rights briefly in 2021, Netflix UK regained the entire Wizarding World catalog in February 2023. This encompasses the original saga, Fantastic Beasts films, and several behind-the-scenes specials.

Canada – Crave
Crave holds the Canadian streaming rights for now. The service offers all Harry Potter and Fantastic Beasts titles to subscribers. Access is also included with an HBO add-on.

Australia – Binge
Aussie fans can stream the boy wizard on Binge. As of early 2023, the full collection is available on Binge with the HBO premium add-on.

The chart below summarizes the current streaming availability by country:

Country Streaming Service
United States HBO Max
United Kingdom Netflix
Canada Crave
Australia Binge

Be sure to double check that Harry Potter is still offered before committing to a streaming subscription, as the lineup tends to change every 12-18 months on average when licensing deals expire.

Why Does Harry Potter Jump Between Streamers?

You may be wondering why the Harry Potter streaming rights bounce around so much compared to other major franchises. It ultimately comes down to licensing agreements between the content owner (Warner Bros.) and various streaming platforms.

When a license expires, another service can make a higher bid to become the next exclusive distributor in a given country. With Harry Potter remaining massively popular even decades later, major streamers like HBO Max, Peacock and Netflix have been willing to pay top dollar to add it to their libraries.

According to an Ampere Analysis report, Harry Potter ranked as the third most-watched acquired franchise between 2019 and early 2022, with over 70 billion global minutes streamed. For context, only The Office and Friends generated higher viewing time among non-originals.

The perpetually high demand among generational fans has sustained bidding wars over the streaming rights. Shorter license periods also force services to continually re-up for access. This churn inevitably frustrates loyal fans who can‘t rely on the movies being in one place.

I‘ll highlight how VPNs are an excellent solution to this access instability later in the article. But first, let‘s explore exactly how to watch Harry Potter depending on your country.

How to Stream Harry Potter in the United States

In the U.S., HBO Max is the sole place to stream all Wizarding World movies as of 2023. Here are helpful steps to access Harry Potter on HBO Max:

  1. Sign up for an HBO Max subscription – $9.99/month with ads or $14.99/month ad-free. New users get a 7-day free trial.

  2. Once logged into your account, use the search bar to find “Harry Potter” or "Fantastic Beasts."

  3. The service offers two hubs that compile all the movies in one place. Select either:

    • Harry Potter Movie Collection
    • Wizarding World Movie Collection
  4. Tap on any film tile to start watching instantly in up to 4K quality!

HBO Max has proven one of the most consistent homes for Harry Potter over the years, though the movies have temporarily disappeared at times. Given the competitive market, it‘s possible the rights could shift again soon.

How to Watch Harry Potter in the UK

As mentioned earlier, Netflix UK swooped up the exclusive British streaming rights to Harry Potter in 2023 after a 1-year gap.

Here‘s how to stream Harry Potter on Netflix UK:

  1. Sign in to your Netflix account or start a free one-month trial.

  2. Search for “Harry Potter” or browse the hub labeled The Wizarding World Collection.

  3. Choose from the 8 Harry Potter movies, Fantastic Beasts films, and behind-the-scenes specials.

  4. Click play on any title to start watching!

Netflix also offers the ability to download movies and shows to mobile devices for offline viewing. So UK subscribers can store the Harry Potter collection for on-the-go marathons.

How to Watch Harry Potter in Canada

Canadians can watch Harry Potter and Fantastic Beasts via Crave for now. Access options include:

  • Crave Movies + HBO subscription – $19.98/month
  • Crave Total + HBO subscription – $27.98/month

Steps to stream:

  1. Go to Crave.ca to create an account and purchase a subscription package with HBO.

  2. Search for “Harry Potter” using the tool icon.

  3. Select any movie to immediately start streaming.

  4. Optionally, download titles to mobile devices using the Crave app for offline viewing.

The Total package also includes upcoming House of the Dragon and other HBO Max originals. So it provides extra value for fans beyond just Potter access.

How to Watch Harry Potter in Australia

Aussies also currently have just one option for streaming Harry Potter Down Under. Binge regained the rights in 2022 after some uncertainty.

Follow these steps to watch on Binge:

  1. Sign up for Binge Basic ($10/month) or Premium ($16/month)

  2. Add on the HBO Premium Pack for $6/month with either plan

  3. Search for Harry Potter or Fantastic Beasts using the Binge app or site

  4. Tap or click any movie to start watching immediately

The HBO add-on grants access to the full Wizarding World catalog. So Binge presents the most affordable route compared to having a separate HBO Max subscription.

Using a VPN to Watch Harry Potter Anywhere

As you can see, pinning down where to stream Harry Potter remains a ongoing challenge due to shifting rights. This is where virtual private networks (VPNs) come to the rescue!

A VPN allows you to route your internet connection through a private server located in another country. This makes it appear as if you‘re accessing the web from that location.

So when you connect to a VPN server in the US, UK, Canada, or Australia, you can circumvent geographic restrictions and stream Harry Potter on that country‘s platform.

I recommend ExpressVPN as the most reliable service for unblocking streaming sites like HBO Max and Netflix. In my experience testing leading VPNs as a streaming industry analyst, ExpressVPN offers the best combination of:

  • Fast connection speeds for HD streaming.
  • Easy-to-use apps for all devices.
  • Works consistently to bypass geo-blocks.
  • Robust security features to keep your data safe.

Steps to watch Harry Potter using ExpressVPN:

  1. Sign up for ExpressVPN and download the app for your device.

  2. Connect to a VPN server located where Harry Potter is streaming (i.e. United States).

  3. Launch the streaming platform (such as HBO Max) and log into your account.

  4. Search for Harry Potter and enjoy wand-waving adventures from any country!

Leading services like ExpressVPN cost just $6 to $12 a month and provide endless flexibility. You can switch server locations on the fly to always access Harry Potter, no matter where you live or travel.

I suggest comparing reviews of the top VPNs to choose the best option for your needs and budget. Our experts evaluated providers on criteria like speed, reliability, and security on .

Purchasing the Harry Potter Series Digitally or Physically

Instead of dealing with the uncertainty of Netflix or HBO Max losing rights yet again, many fans prefer having the permanent ability to conjure up Harry Potter on demand.

Below I‘ll compare where to buy the movies digitally across major platforms. I‘ll also cover physical media like Blu-ray box sets for collectors.

Digital Retailers: Full Series & Individual Pricing

Several online stores let you purchase digital copies of the Harry Potter saga. This grants access to stream or download the films to devices anytime without restrictions.

Here‘s an overview of providers and typical pricing:

Full Series Price Individual Movie Price
Amazon Prime Video $99.99 (SD), $119.99 (HD) $14.99 (SD), $19.99 (HD)
Apple TV & iTunes $99.99 (SD), $129.99 (HD) $14.99 (SD), $19.99 (HD)
Google Play N/A $14.99 (SD), $19.99 (HD)
VUDU N/A $9.99 (SD), $14.99 (HD)
YouTube N/A $9.99 (SD), $14.99 (HD)

Pricing tends to fluctuate somewhat during sales and promotions, but this comparison gives you an idea of the relative value across sellers.

I recommend waiting for special discounts around the holidays when digital retailers often mark down movie bundles. For example, Apple TV recently offered the full series in HD for $99.99 over Christmas.

Physical Options: Blu-ray & DVD Collections

Beyond digital, Harry Potter fans can also purchase physical box sets on disc. This is perfect for diehard collectors!

Top options include:

  • Harry Potter 8-Film Collection on Blu-ray – $69.99 (MSRP), often discounted lower.

  • Harry Potter Complete 8-Film Collection on DVD – $42.99 (MSRP), also frequently on sale.

  • Fantastic Beasts 2-Film Collection on Blu-ray/DVD – Around $24.99.

You can typically find these bundles for the best prices at major retailers like Amazon, Target, and Walmart. Blu-ray releases come packed with bonus content like behind-the-scenes footage and extended scenes.

Owning Harry Potter on disc also makes a great gift for any witch or wizard obsessed with the Wizarding World. The collector‘s edition box sets look gorgeous on display.

How to Watch Harry Potter Free or Cheap

I realize not all muggles can splurge to purchase the movies right now. Fortunately, there are a few magical (and legal) options to watch Harry Potter free or cheap.

Streaming Free Trials

Most major services offer free trial periods for new subscribers. For example:

  • HBO Max: 7-day free trial

  • Hulu: 30-day free trial with Hulu + Live TV subscription

  • FuboTV: 7-day free trial with SyFy access (frequently airs HP movies)

The windows are short, but enough time to binge the first few Harry Potter films. Just be sure to set reminders to cancel the trial before getting charged.

One strategy is stacking back-to-back trials of HBO Max, Hulu then FuboTV to extend your total free streaming period. Just make sure the movies are actually available on each during your trial.

Public Library Options

Many local libraries offer DVD loans and free streaming apps. For example, Hoopla lets you borrow movies and ebooks using just a library card. Availability varies, but some libraries‘ Hoopla selection includes Harry Potter titles.

Over-the-air TV

Cable channels like SyFy occasionally air Harry Potter movies. You can watch live using an affordable HD antenna without paying for a satellite or streaming subscription.

Again, access may be limited depending on your region. But an antenna plus free trials can significantly expand options to watch Harry Potter on the cheap.

What We Know About the Upcoming Harry Potter Series

Every true Harry Potter fan is buzzing with excitement about the live-action TV series in early development at HBO Max! Here are the key details revealed so far:

  • The show will debut sometime around 2025, though no firm release date is set yet.

  • It will feature all new characters and storylines set years before Harry‘s arrival at Hogwarts.

  • Iconic author J.K. Rowling is heavily involved in creating the series alongside producers and writers.

  • The show aims to further explore and expand the rich mythology of the Wizarding World.

  • Plot details are still highly secretive, but it will likely showcase fan favorite elements like Quidditch, magic spells, and new professors.

I‘ll be sure to update this streaming guide with any fresh intel about the Harry Potter show as news emerges. The series has massive shoes to fill, but the little we know so far should thrill and reassure fans!

Happy Potter Streaming!

Hopefully this all-inclusive guide better equips Harry Potter devotees to access the magical franchise across platforms and borders.

With the right spells (or VPN), you can reliably conjure up the boy wizard‘s adventures on demand. As a fellow superfan, I understand the sheer joy and nostalgia of revisiting Hogwarts, no matter your age.

If you have any other questions about watching Harry Potter online, feel free to ask! I‘m always happy to help fellow Potterheads find their perfect streaming match. The saga lives on eternally through generations of fans.

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