Netflix US vs. UK for Fans: The Main Difference Explained
Netflix viewers in the US and UK have access to different content. Read this post to learn more about this difference. Explore which popular movies and shows are exclusively available in these countries and which ones are missing.
Did you know that US and UK viewers have different versions of Netflix? Each of them provides some exclusive content unavailable elsewhere. But many popular movies and shows are missing from both countries’ Netflix libraries. And the difference doesn’t end there. Depending on your location, you may have not only different TV series to watch, but even different pricing plans!
But why is Netflix not the same in various locations, and which version is better? Read this article to learn the difference between Netflix US vs. UK based on library sizes, available content, and other factors.
Why Netflix UK vs. US content varies
First of all, let’s figure out why Netflix provides different content in all countries where it’s available.
In short, it’s due to geographical limitations imposed on the content that belongs to another service provider in a particular country. For instance, the Friends TV show is available on Netflix in most countries globally but not in the US. Why? Because the streaming rights to Friends were acquired by WarnerMedia (HBO owner) in a record-breaking 500 million deal.
The same applies to any other movie or TV show available on Netflix. The service provides most of its content to a limited number of countries. And that is exactly why Netflix catalogs vary in different locations, including the US and the UK.
Now, let’s get straight to the point and clarify the difference between Netflix US vs. Netflix UK.
What is Netflix in the UK vs. US difference?
Both British and American Netflix versions are among the richest in terms of the offered media content. But due to geo limitations, they differ in many ways. Here are the most significant factors distinguishing them from each other.
1. Library sizes
Not long ago, Netflix US and UK provided the greatest number of titles among all libraries worldwide. The US was the king of Netflix TV shows, while the UK version offered more movies.
But this tendency is experiencing constant changes as new releases arrive and content distribution rights shift from one service to another. As of March 2023, the most extensive Netflix libraries are in Slovakia, Bulgaria, Latvia, Estonia, and Iceland (all of them have over 8,000 titles available). The UK Netflix library is also in the top ten, offering around 6900–7500 titles. And the US, which is often considered the leading content provider, is currently not even in the top 20 countries with the richest Netflix catalogs.
But of course, quantity doesn’t always equal quality. Both the US and the UK Netflix versions have a decent number of movies and TV shows unavailable anywhere else and, at the same time, both are missing some popular content – more on that in a bit.
2. Subscription plans
Apart from the library size, Netflix pricing plans in the US and the UK also differ. That difference is due to local economics and market conditions in each country.
Here are the Netflix monthly subscription options in the UK:
- Basic plan with ads – £4.99
- Basic plan – £6.99
- Standard plan – £10.99
- Premium plan – £15.99
Now, let’s look at the Netflix monthly plans in the US:
- Basic plan with ads – $6.99
- Basic plan – $9.99
- Standard plan – $15.49
- Premium plan – $19.99
3. Content quality
Luckily, video quality is the same in all countries where Netflix is available. So you can watch the desired content in 4K and with HDR resolution, no matter whether you’re in the US or the UK.
4. Release dates
The dates of releases are another factor that differentiates Netflix in different countries. Here, it all depends on the movie or TV show you’re waiting for. But many American viewers complain about late releases of their favorite content, while in the UK, the same fresh content may appear much earlier. How come? Most often, this is also due to different media distribution laws in those countries.
US Netflix vs. UK Netflix: the round-up
Now, let’s sum up the difference between the Netflix US catalog vs. the UK at the time this article is written.
|Netflix US||Netflix UK|
|Approximate library size (total number of titles)||6270+||6900+|
|The approximate number of TV shows||2440||2550|
|The approximate number of movies||3830||4350|
|Subscription plan||£4.99 – £15.99||$6.99 – $19.99|
|Content quality||4K, HDR resolution||4K, HDR resolution|
As you see, the difference in the number of titles doesn’t seem huge. Still, the list of popular content unavailable in the US and the UK is quite long. According to some unofficial Netflix search platforms, such as uNoGS and Fixwatch, over 50 titles are missing from these countries’ catalogs.
Exclusive Netflix content in the US and the UK
Let’s take a look at the high-rated movies and shows fans in the US and the UK can enjoy exclusively with their Netflix subscriptions.
Netflix content available in the US but not in the UK
American Netflix is full of comedies, high-rated dramas, and TV shows for every taste. Also, subscribers from America can access popular British series, including Downton Abbey and The Great British Bake Off, and other US Netflix shows not available in the UK since most of them belong to local media services like BBC.
Here, we listed the top 20 Netflix movies and series available in the US but not in the UK.
|Chinatown (1974)||Neo-noir mystery||8.2|
|Casino Royale (2006)||Spy movie||8|
|Rain Man (1988)||Road comedy-drama||8|
|Boogie Nights (1997)||Period comedy-drama||7.9|
|The Outlaw Josey Wales (1976)||Western||7.8|
|Ferris Bueller’s Day Off (1986)||Teen comedy||7.8|
|What’s Eating Gilbert Grape (1993)||Coming-of-age drama||7.7|
|The Machinist (2007)||Psychological thriller||7.7|
|Sir! No Sir! (2005)||Documentary||7.6|
|The Master (2012)||Psychological drama||7.1|
|Downton Abbey (2010-2015)||Historical drama||8.7|
|Friday Night Lights (2006-2011)||Sports drama||8.7|
|The Great British Bake Off (2010- present)||Baking reality show||8.6|
|Schitt’s Creek (2015-2020)||Satirical sitcom||8.5|
|Stargate SG-1 (1997-2007)||Science fiction adventure||8.4|
|30 Rock (2006-2013)||Satirical sitcom||8.3|
|Alone (2015- present)||Survival reality show||8.4|
|TURN: Washington’s Spies (2014-2017)||Historical drama||8.1|
|Into the Badlands (2015-2019)||Action-drama||7.9|
|Happy Endings (2011-2013)||Single-camera sitcom comedy||7.8|
Netflix content available in the UK but not in the US
The American Netflix lacks some popular reality shows and series too, as they belong to other streaming platforms in the US, such as Hulu and HBO Max. At the same time, many of them are accessible to British Netflix fans.
For more information about TV shows unavailable to Netflix US viewers, read our recent blog post. And here are the top 20 IMDb-rated movies and series you can watch on Netflix UK but not the US.
|Roger Waters The Wall (2015)||Concert movie||8.5|
|A Few Good Men (1992)||Legal drama||7.7|
|Adaptation (2002)||Meta comedy-drama||7.7|
|Superbad (2007)||Coming-of-age comedy||7.6|
|Sorry We Missed You (2019)||Drama||7.6|
|Pick of the Litter (2018)||Documentary||7.6|
|Falling Down (1993)||Action movie||7.6|
|Beats per Minute (2017)||Drama||7.4|
|American Graffiti (1973)||Coming-of-age comedy-drama||7.4|
|Green Street (2005)||Crime drama||7.4|
|Rick and Morty (2013- present)||Adult animated sci-fi sitcom||9.2|
|The Office US (2005-2013)||Mockumentary sitcom||9|
|Friends (1994-2004)||Comedy sitcom||8.9|
|It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia (2005- present)||Black comedy sitcom||8.8|
|Archer (2009- present)||Adult animated sitcom||8.6|
|Parks and Recreation (2009-2015)||Political satire mockumentary sitcom||8.6|
|Line of Duty (2012-2021)||Police procedural drama||8.5|
|Staged (2020- present)||Comedy sitcom||8.5|
|Modern Family (2009-2020)||Mockumentary sitcom||8.4|
|Orphan Black (2013-2017)||Science-fiction thriller||8.3|
To sum up, both Netflix catalogs considered in this article have particular benefits. But at this point, you may be wondering whether you can access your beloved content blocked in the country you’re currently visiting – for instance, if you live in the UK and going on a work trip to the US. Luckily, it’s still possible to watch your preferred version of Netflix with a virtual private network (VPN).
Should you use a VPN for Netflix?
A VPN is an excellent solution for those who want to gain a seamless streaming experience wherever they go. Here are the main reasons to stream Netflix with a reliable VPN like VeePN on your device.
- It allows you to stream your favorite content while traveling. A VPN spoofs your real IP address and moves your traffic through an encrypted tunnel. This way, your current location doesn’t matter, as you can connect to a VPN server located in your country (whether the US, the UK, or elsewhere) and watch the desired Netflix content from anywhere in the world.
- It provides privacy and security features. A VPN protects your online activities, account credentials, and communications from the prying eyes of hackers, snoopers, and scammers. With the help of this powerful cybersecurity solution, you can stream your desired content with peace of mind, as your data is invisible to third parties.
- It stops Internet throttling. Internet service providers (ISPs) often slow down users’ connection speed by limiting your device’s bandwidth. This may spoil the fun of watching your favorite Netflix content. Luckily, a reliable VPN stops Internet throttling and returns your device’s capacity to normal.
Here is how to stream Netflix US or Netflix UK with a VPN in a few simple steps.
How to use a VPN for Netflix
- Choose a trustworthy VPN service provider. It’s better not to opt for free VPN services. Such software is often less efficient and lacks some critical features. Moreover, free VPNs may compromise your privacy and share your sensitive data with third parties.
- Sign up for VeePN. Select the most convenient subscription plan that suits your individual needs.
- Download and install the VeePN app on your device. VeePN offers solutions for all major devices and operating systems, including Windows, macOS, Linux, iOS, Android, Android TV, Fire TV, and Smart TV.
- Select the appropriate VPN server location. At this point, your IP address will be hidden, and your traffic will move through a remote server in the chosen country.
- Feel free to start streaming! Turn your VPN on and enjoy Netflix movies and shows of your choice.
For more details on how to subscribe to Netflix with a VPN, read our detailed guide.
How to troubleshoot your VPN connection
Although using VPNs is legal in most countries, some streaming services tend to block server IPs associated with virtual private networks. So it sometimes happens that you cannot access Netflix with your VPN turned on. Here is how to regain your access to Netflix if your VPN isn’t working.
- Change your server location. Most likely, if the server you’re connected to doesn’t provide access to some websites or online services, the other one will do. Luckily, VeePN offers several servers in the US and the UK.
- Clear your browsing data and cookies. Then, restart your device, turn your VPN on, and try to enter your Netflix account once again.
- Choose another VPN protocol. With VeePN, you can access all major tunneling protocols – OpenVPN, IKEv2/IPSec, WireGuard, and Shadowsocks.
Looking for the best VPN for streaming? – Try VeePN!
Need a powerful solution to stream the desired Netflix content while traveling without compromising your Internet privacy? Try VeePN! It’s a reputable VPN service that offers numerous powerful cybersecurity features and protects your data with the advanced AES-256 encryption standard. VeePN provides access to over 2,500 servers across 89 locations in 60 countries, including the US and the UK.
Download VeePN now and enjoy a smooth connection and complete safety when watching Netflix wherever you go.
Is Netflix different in the UK and the US?
Yes, Netflix UK and Netflix US are different. While most of the content is the same, some movies and TV shows available in the US aren’t included in the UK catalog and the other way around. Check out this article to learn more.
What does Netflix UK have that the US doesn’t?
Some examples of Netflix TV shows available in the UK but not in the US are It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, The Office US, Friends, Rick and Morty, Modern Family, and more. Movies you can watch only with a UK Netflix subscription include Roger Waters the Wall, Green Street, Adaptation, Superbad, and so on. To learn more about the difference between Netflix US and Netflix UK, read this article.
What is on American Netflix but not on the UK?
Netflix US has quite a lot of exclusives unavailable in the UK. For example, these are TV shows Downton Abbey, The Great British Baking Show, Schitt’s Creek, Friday Night Lights, Happy Endings, and more. The movies available on Netflix US but not on Netflix UK include Casino Royale, Rain Man, Chinatown, and many others. Read this article to learn more.
Which is better, Netflix US or UK?
The answer depends on your individual tastes. Both Netflix US and Netflix UK offer many exclusive movies and shows. For example, American Netflix has many critically acclaimed British series, such as Downton Abbey and The Great British Baking Show. In contrast, the UK Netflix catalog includes many extremely popular TV shows (Friends, Misfits, Rick and Morty, and The Office US, to name a few). For more details, read this article.