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TL;DR: March Madness is taking place from March 14 to April 3. You can watch for free with trials of DirecTV Stream, Sling, fuboTV, Paramount+, and YouTube TV.
March Madness is back, and that means intense rivalries, big upsets, and everyone despairing over their failed brackets. We don’t know what it is about March Madness, but it always seems to deliver bucketloads of drama.
If you’re looking for the best way to watch March Madness from anywhere in the world, we have all the information you need.
When is March Madness?March Madness takes place from March 14 to April 3. A lot of backetball is going to be packed between those two dates, so keep this schedule close and don’t miss out:
Selection Sunday: March 12
First Four: March 14-15
First round: March 16-17
Second round: March 18-19
Sweet 16: March 23-24
Elite Eight: March 25-26
Final Four: April 1
NCAA Championship Game: April 3
Write these dates down. Commit them to memory. Do everything you can to remember. We don’t want you to miss a moment.
Can you watch March Madness online?The good news is that fans can follow March Madness 2023 without stepping foot outside. The tournament is being broadcast on CBS, TBS, TNT, and TruTV, meaning the best way to stream March Madness is to subscribe to a streaming service like DirecTV Stream, Sling, fuboTV, Paramount+, or YouTube TV. These popular services get access to live TV streams from a wide range of channels, so you can keep track of everything that’s going on throughout March Madness.
What is the best streaming service for March Madness?It’s always nice to have options, but with multiple streaming platforms hosting March Madness fixtures, it can be difficult to know which service is best for you. It’s important to consider which games are being shown on which service, the cost, and whether or not they offer a free trial. Fortunately, we’ve done that for you:
DirecTV Stream(Opens in a new tab) — You could make the argument that DirecTV Stream is the best way to follow March Madness, because this streaming platform shows CBS, TBS, TNT, and TruTV. The catch? It’s definitely not the cheapest option. The Entertainment Plan (with TBS, TNT, and TruTV) costs $74.99 a month, or you can upgrade to the Choice package (including CBS) for $99.99 a month. Alternatively, you could make the most of the five-day free trial to watch key March Madness moments.
fuboTV(Opens in a new tab) — The Pro package offers live streaming of CBS, meaning you can watch some of March Madness with fuboTV. This plan costs $74.99 a month, but crucially, starts with a seven-day free trial.
Hulu + Live TV(Opens in a new tab) — This popular service includes access to CBS, TBS, TNT, and TruTV. Hulu + Live TV (with adverts) costs $69.99 per month. Hulu + Live TV (without adverts) will set you back $82.99 per month. There is no free trial.
Paramount+(Opens in a new tab) — Paramount+ does not offer the range of the other services in this list, but it only costs $9.99 a month. And better yet, it will offer live streaming of every March Madness game hosted by CBS, including the Final Four and Championship games. That’s pretty appealing, especially when you consider that Paramount+ offers a seven-day free trial.
Sling(Opens in a new tab) — Sling’s Blue subscription comes with TBS, TNT, and TruTV to watch March Madness. This would usually cost $45 a month, but for a limited time, you can save 50% on your first month and get this package for just $22.50. Sling is also offering its Orange subscription at half-price for the first month — this tier offers TBS and TNT, and TruTV with a free trial through March 19. This tier is usually $40 a month, but with the first-month deal, it’s available for just $20.
YouTube TV(Opens in a new tab) — Want to watch multiple March Madness games at the same time? Check out YouTube TV. For a limited time, this service costs $62.99 per month for your first three months ($72.99 per month after the promotional period), and includes access to CBS, TBS, TNT, and truTV. This deal also gets you access to the new multiview feature, which lets subscribers watch up to four games at once. Not convinced? New subscribers are eligible for a 14-day free trial of the basic package.
The best service for you depends on a lot of factors, and it’s something you should think carefully about before committing. You definitely shouldn’t do anything drastic, because you might not need to decide.
Can you livestream March Madness for free?Yes, you can watch a lot of this year’s March Madness for free. You just need to make the most of the free trials offered by leading streaming sites, and think about timings. DirecTV Stream, fuboTV, Paramount+, and YouTube TV all offer free trials, so you could stream plenty of March Madness games without paying anything.
You do you, but we recommend using the YouTube TV, DirecTV Stream, and fuboTV free trials for the first few rounds of the tournament, then sign up to the Paramount+ free trial for the Final Four and Championship games. This is sneaky, but it works.
Can you watch March Madness for free from abroad?Most of the streaming sites offering coverage of March Madness are only available in the U.S., which means anyone connecting from abroad will not be able to make the most of the free trials. The only way to get around this is with a VPN.
By signing up for a streaming-friendly VPN and connecting to a secure server in a location that supports the likes of DirecTV Stream(Opens in a new tab) and fuboTV(Opens in a new tab), you can trick these streaming platforms into thinking you are connecting from an approved location. The process is actually pretty straightforward. Just follow these simple steps:
Sign up for a streaming-friendly VPN
Download the app to your device of choice (the best VPNs have apps for Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, Linux, and more)
Open up the app and connect to a server in the U.S.
Sign up for a free trial of DirecTV Stream, fuboTV, Paramount+, or YouTube TV
Watch March Madness for free on fuboTV
This process is quick and easy with a streaming-friendly service like ExpressVPN.
ExpressVPN(Opens in a new tab) is the best service for streaming, with strong connection speeds, powerful levels of encryption, a built-in password manager, and fast servers in 94 countries. Subscribers also get apps for every platform and can connect up to five devices simultaneously.
A one-year subscription to ExpressVPN(Opens in a new tab) is on sale for $103.78 and includes an extra three months for free — 49% off for a limited time. This discounted plan also includes a year of free unlimited cloud backup and a pretty generous 30-day money-back guarantee. You can use the money-back guarantee to watch March Madness without spending anything.
Watch March Madness for free from anywhere in the world with ExpressVPN.
Joseph joined Mashable as the UK Shopping Editor in 2018. He worked for a number of print publications before making the switch to the glittery world of digital media, and now writes about everything from coffee machines to VPNs.
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