Catching HBO exclusives can be a little tricky here in Australia, especially if you don’t know where to look. While US audiences can simply subscribe to the streaming service HBO Max, Aussies don’t have that luxury since the streaming platform has yet to hit local shores.
There is some speculation that HBO Max might one day be available down under, but until that time arrives there are a few alternative options so you can have access to the latest HBO shows directly on your TV.
If you want to keep up to date with The Last of Us or catch up on popular past titles such as House of the Dragon without relocating to the US, both Binge and Foxtel Now offer local audiences a fast tracked viewing option so you won’t miss out on all the action.
Rather watch your favourite shows directly through HBO Max? Your other option is to use a VPN, though there can be a few hoops to jump through to get this one to work.
If you want to watch all the latest HBO TV shows here in Australia, we’ve got you covered with all the information on how you can enjoy the latest HBO series directly on your TV without having to leave your couch.
How to watch HBO Max shows in Australia
It might be a while until Aussies have direct access to HBO Max, but if you can’t wait there’s still a streaming service option available through Binge. Offering a local home for HBO content, Binge gives Aussie audiences the chance to easily catch exclusive HBO shows without having to bend over backwards while trying to get a VPN to work.
All the most popular HBO shows are available through Binge. Not only can you keep up to date with the newest episodes of The Last of Us as it hits US screens but you can also watch other popular titles including House of the Dragon, Euphoria, The White Lotus, Westworld and many more big titles direct from the US.
While HBO Max offers US audience’s day-one blockbuster titles, this is where Binge falls short. Previously, Zack Snyder’s Justice League, Steven Soderbergh’s Kimi and Megan Park’s The Fallout have had this treatment on Binge, however more recent titles such as Dune and The Matrix Resurrections haven’t.
You’re not just getting HBO titles through Binge though. Offering locally created shows such as Colin from Accounts and picking up exclusives from other US providers such as FX, MTV and AMC, Binge has a big catalogue on offer that can help justify the service’s costs.
Streaming HBO Max content is easy through the Australian streaming service Binge, which gives viewers fast tracked episodes direct from the US and access to HBO Max’s catalogue of TV shows.
While there’s a cheaper ad-supported tier on the horizon in the first quarter of 2023, you can currently get Binge from only AU$10 per month with their Basic subscription that comes with a single stream in SD quality. If you’re after HD streams, then prices are AU$14 per month for a standard subscription with two simultaneous streams and AU$18 per month for four streams in the premium subscription.
Binge currently also offers a 14-day free trial that you can opt out of if the service isn’t right for you. You’ll have access to 10,000 hours of content once you’re subscribed, including over 800 movies plus shows such as The Last of Us, House of the Dragon, The Wire and more from networks including HBO, FX and Warner Bros.
HBO on Foxtel
As an alternative to Binge, Foxtel subscribers also have fast-tracked access to HBO Max's TV shows as they air, either via traditional pay TV subscription or the Foxtel Now streaming service.
That said, Foxtel Now is more expensive than Binge and requires users to first sign up for the base Essentials pack (AU$25 per month after a 10-day free trial), and then pay for additional add-on packs depending on which shows they want access to.
Thankfully, HBO's content is part of Foxtel Now's Essentials (Pop and Lifestyle) base pack, meaning you won't have to pay for extra add-ons in order to watch HBO Max's TV shows on the service.
How to watch HBO Max in Australia via VPN
Using a VPN service to change your IP address and access US servers will allow Aussies to stream HBO Max, however, signing up to the streaming service and making payments to it is another matter entirely..
ExpressVPN - get the world's best VPN
We've put all the major VPNs through their paces and we rate ExpressVPN as our top pick, thanks to its speed, ease of use and strong security features. It's also compatible with just about any streaming device out there, including Amazon Fire TV Stick, Apple TV, Xbox and PlayStation, as well as Android and Apple mobiles.
Sign up for an annual plan now and get an extra 3 months absolutely FREE. And if you change your mind within the first 30 days, let them know and they'll give you your money back without a quibble.
At present, HBO Max will only accept US-based credit cards, meaning your standard Australian credit or debit card won't be of any use to you.
Of course, there are ways to get around this – services such as StatesCard allow you to create a virtual prepaid card with a US address that can be topped up via PayPal.
That said, you will have to pay an additional fee to your chosen virtual card service, on top of the price of your VPN service. For most people who simply want to watch HBO Max's TV shows, we recommend signing up to a local service like Binge.
To access Binge right now, simply select one of the signup options below.
Sign up for Black Friday email alerts!
Get the hottest deals available in your inbox plus news, reviews, opinion, analysis and more from the TechRadar team.
Stephen primarily covers phones and entertainment for TechRadar's Australian team, and has written professionally across the categories of tech, film, television and gaming in both print and online for over a decade. He's obsessed with smartphones, televisions, consoles and gaming PCs, and has a deep-seated desire to consume all forms of media at the highest quality possible.
He's also likely to talk a person’s ear off at the mere mention of Android, cats, retro sneaker releases, travelling and physical media, such as vinyl and boutique Blu-ray releases. Right now, he's most excited about QD-OLED technology, The Batman and Hellblade 2: Senua's Saga.
- Petra PlayerWriter, TechRadar Australia