While it may have once again been shifted from its regular spring spot on the sporting calendar thanks to the pandemic, this year's edition of this iconic long-distance athletics event should have a much more familiar feel to proceedings. Read on for your full guide on how to watch a London Marathon 2021 live stream, no matter where you are in the world.
With tens of thousands of amateur and charity-raising fun-runners returning to this year's edition, alongside spectators lining the streets of the UK capital, the carnival-like atmosphere of years past should be back in full effect.
This year's event also promises to be one to remember for followers of elite racing, with 2020 winner Shura Kitata back to defend his title against a field that boasts seven sub-2:04 marathon runners.
It's a similarly strong line up for the elite Women's race, with last year's winner Brigid Kosgei returning in a field that also includes Ethiopia’s Roza Dereje, who finished fourth in the Olympic marathon.
We've got all the info on how to watch the London Marathon 2021 at every stage for free from anywhere. And if you're out of the country and can't access your preferred domestic broadcaster, you can always use a VPN to bypass any geo-restrictions (opens in new tab).
When does the London Marathon 2021 take place?
This year's London Marathon takes place on a 26.219-mile route across the UK capital on Sunday, October 3.
The elite races begin at 9am BST / 4am ET / 1am PT / 7pm AEDT
Read on below for full stage times.
Where can I live stream the London Marathon 2021 for free at every stage for free in the UK?
The brilliant news for athletics fans in the UK is that you can once again watch this year’s London marathon for free live on the BBC.
The BBC's London Marathon coverage gets underway at 8am BST on BBC Two, before crossing over to BBC One at 10am.
BBC is free-to-air, though you should have a valid UK TV license, and you can watch coverage online via the network's streaming platform BBC iPlayer (opens in new tab), which has excellent apps across a number of devices.
- Desktop: Windows, Mac
- Mobiles: iOS, Android
- Streaming devices: Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Roku, Now TV
- Consoles: Xbox One, Xbox One S, Nvidia Shield
- Smart TVs: Samsung TV (2012 and later), FreeSat, YouView (BT, Talk Talk, Sony), Freeview Play, Virgin V6 Box
How to watch the London Marathon 2021 live stream from anywhere
If you're out of the country during any of this year’s stages, you can still get access to a live stream of the the London Marathon 2021 by making use of the best VPN to get past those geo-restrictions.
With most domestic broadcasters locking streaming services to their country, you may hit a wall when it comes to accessing the likes of BBC iPlayer when overseas. However, by getting yourself a handy streaming VPN, you can hop on a server within the US or UK (or anywhere else for that matter depending on where your online content is geo-restricted to), and this will switch your IP address to make it appear as if you're browsing right from the comfort of your own home.
ExpressVPN is the champ of VPN providers (opens in new tab) with its excellent speed, plethora of security features, and, of course, its ability to unlock geo-restricted content, gets us the best seat in the house for the London Marathon 2021.
Better still, it offers new customers a 30-day money back guarantee (opens in new tab), allowing you to give it a shot and find out if it's actually the service for you, before you part with your hard-earned dollar. Better still, right now you can save 49% and receive an additional 3 months with your plan for free.
How to live stream the London Marathon 2021 anywhere else in the world
Athletics fans in the US, Canada and Australia will be able to watch all the action via dedicated online service FloTrack (opens in new tab).
A monthly subscription will set you back $29.99 per month (opens in new tab) while a yearly account costs $210, which will also give you access to coverage of major athletics events throughout the year.
Start time for folk in the States and Canada is at 4am ET / 1am PT.
For viewers Down Under, the runners get under way at the somewhat more convenient time of 7pm AEDT.
Remember, if you're abroad and want to tune into your chosen live stream, download a VPN (opens in new tab) to bypass geo-restrictions and watch as if you were at home.
The London Marathon 2021: Full schedule
- Mini London Marathon at 8.30am BST, 3.30am ET, 6.30pm AEST
- Elite wheelchair race at 8.50am BST, 3.50am ET, 6.50pm AEST
- Elite women's race at 9am BST, 4am ET, 7pm AEST
- Elite men's race and mass start at 9.30am BST, 4.30am ET, 8.30pm AEST
How to use a VPN to unblock any restrictions
If you're outside of your preferred broadcaster's boundaries, you can use a VPN to unblock any geo-restrictions and watch a London Marathon 2021 live stream as if you were right at home. Here's our step-by-step guide on how to do just that.
- VPN - standing for virtual private network - offers security and anonymity as you browse online, using set protocols to encrypt your data and make it unreadable to outsiders.
- As a part of that, you can also switch your IP address, which identifies your location.
- Most VPNs offer a list of locations where its servers are based to join. Connecting to them switches your IP to appear as if you're browsing from that country/city. In turn, you can then access content locked to that country.
- When it comes to finding a VPN, you should make sure you find the best one that's suitable for your chosen device, with VPN providers offering compatibility for a ton of devices, including VPN for Mac, VPN for Android smartphones, an iPad VPN, and even a range of fairly nifty free VPNs.
- Once you've made the decision for the most suitable VPN for your device and your means for using a VPN, sign-up and install it.
- To live stream the London Marathon 2021, all you need to do is select a country showing matches from its list of available servers and connect. You'll then be able to hop over geo-restrictions, with the likes of BBC iPlayer opening its online gates to you.
- We also want to ensure your money is well spent, so we would recommend going for a VPN that offers a risk free trial. ExpressVPN is one of many providers that has a 30-day money back guarantee (opens in new tab).