6 Ways to Get Free HBO

Get your premium cable fix without splurging on a cable subscription. All you need is a few free trials and a little patience.
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HBO app on phone

You can get an HBO subscription through your cable provider, via video streaming services, or directly at the source. However, the monthly cost of $14.99 means watching episodes of Lovecraft Country could be a pricey venture.

Want to know how to get HBO for free instead — or HBO Max, specifically? Then read on to see the places that offer an HBO free trial, free content, or HBO Max as an included perk. Plus, you'll learn everything you need to know to get started.

Navigating Free HBO Trials

It's a little complicated to hop from one HBO free trial to another while you try to keep up with your favorite shows. Before you sign up for any trial account, you should take these things into consideration:

  • You'll have to provide a credit card number. You'll need to cancel before the end of your trial period to avoid being charged.

  • HBO free trials are mostly limited to new subscribers. However, in certain cases, returning subscribers can take advantage of an offer. You can sometimes sidestep the new-subscriber requirement with a new email address, too.

Now that you've got the basics, you're ready to sign up.

6 Ways to Watch HBO for Free

Sign Up for an HBO Free Trial on Hulu

Hulu is one of a number of streaming services that offers HBO as an add-on. If you're already a Hulu subscriber, this could be more convenient than creating an HBO account. You'll only get a 1-week trial, though, so this one is better if you're primarily interested in Hulu. After the trial, you'll pay $14.99 per month (on top of your Hulu subscription).

SEE ALSO: Everything You Need to Know About Streaming Video

Sign Up for a Free Trial of Amazon Prime

Prime Video used to offer a full back catalog of HBO shows. There was previously talk that HBO wouldn't renew the deal after it ended in mid-2018, but select shows stuck around afterward. However, now it seems that relationship has ended.

If you want current HBO shows and movies, HBO content is still available as an add-on — and you can sign up for an HBO Max free trial via Amazon, though it's a scant seven days. After the trial, you'll pay the standard $14.99 per month for an Amazon HBO subscription, plus the fee for your Prime subscription.

Call Your Cable or Satellite Provider

Are you still a cable or satellite customer? Then you may be able to work out a sweet deal by giving your provider a call. If your service (or a competitor) is offering free HBO to new subscribers, you may be able to talk them into giving you the same deal. If you aren't opposed to stretching the truth a bit, saying your cable package is too expensive or that you're thinking about switching providers can help you get freebies.

If your cable provider is offering free HBO to new subscribers, you may be able to talk them into giving you the same deal.

You'll often find cable deals that let you get free HBO for up to three months. And DirecTV is even including a year of HBO Max with select plans. (Three months of Showtime, Starz, Cinemax, and Epix are included, too.) What's more, you can stream HBO to all your devices via the HBO Max app, just like you would if you signed up through a streaming service.

So how much is HBO Max and HBO via cable? After the trial, you'll typically pay around $15 per month plus the cost of cable, though some services offer packages that cut the price.

Watch Free Episodes on HBO

HBO offers a ton of content for free on its website. This is typically limited to premiere episodes, so you'll get hooked. That said, it's a good way to get a taste of what HBO has before signing up for a full-fledged subscription (or trial).

Watch Free Clips on YouTube

Although the selection of available content is pretty limited, HBO posts a lot of show clips to YouTube. Along with trailers and previews, you can watch HBO's talk shows without paying a dime. Shows like Last Week Tonight with John Oliver post segments to YouTube — they aren't full episodes, but they do tend to catch the best moments.

SEE ALSO: Your Complete Guide to Amazon Prime Video

Use Select AT&T Unlimited Plans

AT&T wireless customers on the AT&T Unlimited Elite plan can receive HBO Max as an included perk. Plus, some retired AT&T unlimited plans include HBO. If you're looking to upgrade to the Unlimited Elite plan or are already using one of the eligible retired plans, it's definitely a nice bonus.

Readers, how do you save on premium movie channels? Let us know in the comments below!


DealNews Contributing Writer

Originally working in IT, Elizabeth now writes on tech, gaming, and general consumer issues. Her articles have appeared in USA Today, Time, AOL, PriceGrabber, and more. She has been one of DealNews' most regular contributors since 2013, researching everything from vacuums to renters insurance to help consumers.
DealNews may be compensated by companies mentioned in this article. Please note that, although prices sometimes fluctuate or expire unexpectedly, all products and deals mentioned in this feature were available at the lowest total price we could find at the time of publication (unless otherwise specified).

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