How to watch MTV VMAs: live stream the 2020 awards and BTS online free from anywhere

watch mtv vmas online live stream BTS
(Image credit: Kevin Winter/Getty Images for dcp)

From Madonna's groundbreaking Like a Virgin performance to Kanye West interrupting Taylor Swift, the MTV Video Music Awards have delivered some of pop culture's most striking moments. While the coronavirus pandemic has unsurprisingly forced some changes for the 2020 edition, the show is very much going on, with a big night of performances from major artists promised. Want to know how to watch an MTV VMAs live stream online featuring BTS, Miley Cyrus and more from anywhere? Read on as we detail how to do just that.

2020 MTV VMAs cheat sheet

The year's MTV Music Awards will air live from New York City on Sunday, August 30, at 8pm ET in the US - that's 1am BST start early in the hours of Monday morning in the UK. The show is set to take place across the city and feature outdoor performances. Full streaming options are below, but if you're abroad and already know how to watch 2020 MTV VMAs online, then simply grab a great VPN deal to tune in like you would at home.

Set to be hosted by Hustlers star Keke Palmer, the likes of BTS, Black Eyed Peas, DaBaby, Miley Cyrus, CNCO, Doja Cat, Maluma and The Weeknd are all somehow going to work around Covid-19 protocols and perform live for this year's show.

In terms of this year's nominees, Ariana Grande and Lady Gaga lead the pack with nine nods each, including a joint nomination for Video of the Year for "Rain on Me" - which the pair are set to perform during the show. The pair are followed by Billie Eilish and The Weeknd who both boast six nominations. with Taylor Swift claiming a not-too-shabby five.

Meanwhile DaBaby, Justin Bieber, Gaga, Megan Thee Stallion, Post Malone and The Weeknd will all be battling it out for the coveted Artist of The Year. But in a departure from previous years and signalling how the current times appear to be drawn from Black Mirror scripts, there are two new categories this year - Best Music Video From Home and Best Quarantine Performance.

Keep reading as we break down how to watch the 2020 MTV Video Music Awards online, no matter where you are in the world right now.

How to watch 2020 MTV VMAs online from outside your country

If you happen to be abroad while the 2020 MTV VMAs are being broadcast – out of the country for work or taking a well-deserved holiday – you don’t have to miss a moment of the VMA's.

Say you wind up in a country where this content isn't available to stream. Downloading a VPN will let you watch the VMA's live, or catch up on-demand, no matter where you’re located. This stellar bit of software alters your IP address, circumventing pesky geo-blocks so that you can access your favorite VoD services just as if you were in your pajamas back home.

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There are hundreds of VPNs you could choose from, but ExpressVPN is one of the best. It's fast, easy to use, and simple to install. It's also compatible with a whole host of devices, which includes Amazon Fire TV Stick, Apple TV, Xbox, PlayStation, and iOS and Android software, among many others.

Express VPN's flexible 30-day money back guarantee is hard to refuse. But even more tantalizing is that you can purchase an annual plan for a 49% discount and 3 months extra FREE – a brilliant offer for an invaluable bit of kit.

Once installed, just click on the location of your home country and press connect. You’ll then be free to watch the 2020 VMA's online, no matter where you are in the world. Check it out.

watch 2020 MTV VMA's online

How to watch the 2020 MTV VMA's online in the US for FREE


As well as this year's show being the first time it will take place outside of an auditorium, the 2020 VMA's will also be the first time in its 36-year history to air live on a broadcast network.

This year the pop extravaganza will simulcast on the free-to-air channel The CW, with the Awards also being shown live across 11 ViacomCBS brands including MTV. 

The CW streams content on its website and companion apps for FREE - no log-in required if you're based in the United States!

As before, if you find yourself out of the country, you can use clever software like ExpressVPN to watch the MTV VMAs online for free with The CW, or through your cable provider, just as if you were at home.

watch the 2020 MTV VMA's in canada

How to watch the 2020 MTV VMA's online in Canada


Somewhat unsurprisingly, the 2020 VMA's will be shown at the same time as the US on MTV Canada from 8pm ET.

You can watch online at or via the MTV iOS or Android apps - this will need you to activate your device and sign in with your TV provider for full access.

If you've already got this sorted but are away from home this week, consider using a VPN to get around those pesky geo-blocking restrictions.

watch 2020 MTV VMA's online uk stream

How to watch the 2020 MTV VMA's online in the UK for FREE


While is set to broadcast the show live, it's currently unclear if that stream will be available for viewers outside of the US.

MTV UK, meanwhile, are once again opting not to show this year's VMA's live, and will instead be showing a playback of the event in its entirety at the more civilised time of 9pm BST on Monday evening (August 31).

MTV UK is available with basic Virgin  Media and Sky packages, but if you're not already a subscriber, streaming service Now TVis also offering live access to MTV. The channel is available as part of the Entertainment Pass – just £8.99 a month currently but £9.99 after August 31. Best of all, if you're. anew customer you’re entitled to a FREE Now TV trial of 7 days, so you'll be able to enjoy the VMA's for nothing.

If you find yourself abroad and unable to connect to your usual streaming provider, consider downloading a great VPN like ExpressVPN. This will let you circumvent regional viewing restrictions and connect to the service you pay for back home.

watch 2020 MTV VMA's australia

How to watch 2020 MTV VMA's online in Australia


Things are little bit more straightforward for folk Down Under  – MTV Australia will be showing the VMA's live and in full at 10am AEST on Monday morning. 

Aussie pay TV behemoth Foxtel provides access to MTV as part of its Essential base package, which consists of over 25 channels for AUS$25 a month and can easily be bulked up further by adding Sports, Movies, and Drama Extra packages at an additional fee. Best of all, there's a 10-day free trial so you can see if it's right for you

It’s worth reiterating too that, if you’re out of the country, a VPN like ExpressVPN will let you connect to your VOD service back home, so you can watch the VMA's live, no matter where you are.

Kevin Lynch

Kevin Lynch is a London-born, Dublin-based writer and journalist. The author of Steve Jobs: A Biographic Portrait, Kevin is a regular feature writer for a number of tech sites and the former Technology Editor for the Daily Mirror. He has also served as editor of and has been a member of the judging panel for the BAFTA British Academy Video Game Awards. Alongside reviewing the latest AV gear, smartphones and computers, Kevin also specialises in music tech and can often be found putting the latest DAWs, MIDI controllers and guitar modellers through their paces. Born within the sound of Bow Bells, Kevin is also a lifelong West Ham fan for his troubles.