How to Watch Amazon Prime in France

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Updated: May 1, 2017

  1. First setup a VPN account
  2. Then download + install the VPN software to the device you will watch Amazon Prime in France on
  3. Next, open the VPN software and connect to a location that you want the Amazon Prime version of (e.g. connect a US-based server to get the US version of Amazon Prime)
  4. Either login to your existing Amazon Prime account or setup a new one for the location you have connected to the VPN through
  5. Enjoy Amazon Prime in France

How to watch Amazon Prime in France

in more detail:

NOTE: I have reviewed almost all of the top VPN providers and for me ExpressVPN has always stood out when it comes to streaming video content, so I have used it to illustrate this article. You can find out more here:


I was pretty excited when the boss asked me to go and run a project out of our Paris office for the next 2 years. I had taken the ‘Missus’ to Paris twice for very successful romantic breaks and she was excited at the chance to get to know the city better. The money was a big improvement on what I was on and a free apartment was thrown in as well.

I was even told my lack of French wasn’t a problem as the office operated in English. Everything was set up perfect for me. The only thing I missed was entertainment. All the TV in France is, understandably, in French and most of the films are either dubbed into French or covered with very annoying subtitles which I have always found distracting.

I agonized for a while over which online subscription service to use to solve my problem. All the French versions were hopeless, so it would have to be the real deal. Then I read some news which made my mind up for me. Jeremy Clarkson and the British Top Gear team had signed up for Amazon Prime. Well if it was good enough for my favorite presenters, it was good enough for me too.

Only problem was, Amazon Prime seemed to be restricted in Paris. A bit of research soon led me to my solution, and it was called ExpressVPN.


Why is Amazon Prime not available in France?

The UK version of Amazon Prime is not available in France because of the issue of rights. The content that Amazon streams is mostly owned by production companies who sell Amazon the rights to use it. These rights are sold by country, so whilst Amazon may hold he rights to show a particular show in the US, it does not mean they have the rights to show the same show in France.

Therefore, they have to restrict access to the site in other countries in order to ensure that they are not broadcasting shows in places where they do not hold the rights to do so.

And to do this they use something known as geo-blocking.


How is Amazon Prime Blocking Access in France?

Geo-blocking is a pretty simple technology that involves websites and streaming services like Amazon Prime analyzing the IP Address of each of their users. An IP Address is a data set which everyone using the internet broadcasts to each and every website they visit. It contains various bits of information, including details of your geographic location.

So Amazon Prime will look at your IP Address and if it indicates that you are located in Paris rather than the US, it will not allow you to access your account and stream content there.

The only way to evade geo-blocking is by changing your IP Address to fool sites into thinking you are in different countries. And the best way to do this is by using a VPN.

VPNs work by rerouting your internet activity via a server located overseas and in doing so changing the IP Address received by websites you visit from your machines to that of the server. Therefore, if you connect to a UK-based server while in France, Amazon Prime will still believe you are in the US, and their geo-blocking will not be triggered. This means you can use Amazon Prime as usual.

The best VPN for streaming Amazon Prime in France is, in my view, ExpressVPN, and if you read on I will explain the very simple steps by which you can do this.


How to Use a VPN to Watch Amazon Prime in France

Step 1: Sign up for VPN

First off you will need to visit the ExpressVPN website to sign up with them. You can do this by clicking any of the links you can see on this page.

Once there, you will need to choose which of their subscription packages you want to sign up for. After making your choice, you will be taken to their payment page where you can follow the simple instructions to pay for your package. Don’t worry too much about this. ExpressVPN offer a 30-day money-back guarantee if you are not completely happy with their service.

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Once you have paid, you will need to click on a link sent to your email address, and they your account will be enabled.


Step 2: Download & Install VPN

Once you have confirmed your account, you will be invited to choose an option from the menu below to download the ExpressVPN software. As you can see they support almost all devices so all you have to do is make the correct choice, click on the link, and follow the simple instructions to download, and then install, ExpressVPN.

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Once the software has downloaded, and installed, all you need to do is open it up.

Step 3: Connect to US-based Server on VPN

When the ExpressVPN user interface opens up, all that is left for you to do is choose which server you want to connect to. If you are looking to connect to Amazon Prime, you will need to choose one of their US-based servers. It doesn’t matter which but if you are in France, East Coast servers will generally be a bit quicker than West Coast ones.

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Click on the connection and wait a few moments while ExpressVPN connects you. Then you are ready to go. Here's how this looks on my Android device:

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Step 4: Setup Amazon Prime Account

If you are already an Amazon Prime user then all that is left for you to do is log into your account as usual.

If you are new to the service, you will need to sign up. This can be done at the Amazon.com website as usual, and the service accepts Visa and Mastercard credit cards from anywhere, so payment is easy. All you will need to do is provide a US postal address, but this can be any address as Amazon are not in the habit of checking.

And once you have done that, you are ready to go.


Conclusion

With this method I have been able to watch anything I like on Amazon Prime… although I am still waiting for Clarkson and Co. to make their debuts.

Please do leave any comments you may have about your experiences using this process in the comment boxes below.

And if you are not sure ExpressVPN is the one for you, there are of course other VPNs you can choose from. Above you will see my pick of the Top 5 VPNs for watching Amazon Prime in France.

5 Answers

  1. madIE
    November 5, 2016 at 10:37 am

    HEj David and thanks for this article. I have been looking into the VPN services for a while, I just didn’t know if my FRENCH AMAZON PRIME, would give me access to the US prime if i was connected via vpn, but i think you have answered that and I will need to make a new subscription altogether. Big thanks once more.
    BTW i found a provider called “private internet access” , not sure you heard of them, but i looked into it a bit and they seem the optimal choice , maybe before i sign up you could have a look at them and share your thoughts?

    Warm regards from Fontainebleau
    Madie

    1. Chris Beattie
      November 7, 2016 at 4:41 am

      Hey Madie, thanks for sharing your thoughts — you’re absolutely right in saying that you will get access to the US Amazon Prime through simply connecting to a US-based server and then setting up a US Amazon Prime account thereafter.

      Private Internet Access is a very reputable VPN provider. We actually conducted a comprehensive review of them, which we constantly keep updated. You can check it out here: https://fried.com/reviews/private-internet-access-review/

      Thanks again, Madie!

      1. MaIE
        November 7, 2016 at 4:50 am

        Hi there and thands for the reply. I will read the review just now, but please note IT DIDN’T WORK.
        I was unable to watch Netflix( I pay for a French subscription, but as I was virtually in the USA I had the American Netflix on ) and Amazon uk, the Amazon showed me a 4601 error and Netflix just Sid I had no rights.
        When I think about this it is more than frustrating, as I pay both the Netflix AND the French Amazon prime. Why would they fight so hard to cut me off, when they have a great excuse to just lay low thanks to the VPNs.
        Please note this problem in your review , to save people time, and feel free to share if you know how to get around their new restrictions…I might have to switch VPN provider though 🙁

        Cheers
        Madie

        1. Chris Beattie
          November 7, 2016 at 5:07 am

          Hi Madie,

          Really appreciate you sharing your experience with this. Sorry to hear that both Amazon Prime *and* Netflix were blocked for you while using Private Internet Access.

          For future reference, we highly recommend you check out our “service specific” guides, like this one: https://fried.com/guides/how-to-watch-netflix-in-europe/ so you know exactly which VPN providers will give you access to which online media services (because like you just, sadly, discovered — some VPN providers are unable to give access to some services.)

          Regarding Netflix, we recommend using BufferedVPN or ExpressVPN, as these are two of the only VPN providers today that still works hard to give users full access to Netflix from wherever you are in the world.

          Can you confirm that you also have an Amazon Prime UK subscription? I ask because in your first comment you only mentioned wanting access to the French and US versions of Amazon Prime. Perhaps not having a UK Prime account setup is giving you the error. Unfortunately there is no way around Amazon’s geo-restrictions without actually purchasing individual accounts for each country you want the version of Prime in.

          I will be sure to update the PIA review to include your experience so future readers are aware that this VPN provider does not give access to Netflix abroad.

          I feel your frustration, Madie. This battle between online streaming services and VPN users is a real pain point, since many users do not even wish to access services remotely — rather just want to protect their privacy with a VPN. It will be interesting to see how this battle concludes!

          1. Madie
            November 8, 2016 at 5:40 am

            Hi and thanks again. I will try the other VPN you recommend.
            Regarding PIA , I must add that I had no problems whatsoever to resign and get a refund ( or at least they told me they issued it, didn’t check yet). I would therefore like to add that my overall experience was quite good. Fast replies and friendly service, easy to install, and seemed to do a fine work protecting me just didn’t work with these two ( Netflix and Amazon) that I needed it to.

            To answer your question: Yes I have a prime in the uk. I am often there and can use it , I just don’t get my head around these restrictions, a truly solid company should instead of putting money into how to block people using VPN this of their clients and put the money on delivering all the content across the borders . After all I pay quite a lot of money for it. If it continues like this I will resign from Amazon all together.

            In France I spend a fortune with them and I still get snotty attitude sometimes; as I keep saying : “you build years to reach a excellent service level and customer trust, but you can fall our of grace in just weeks”.

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