If you’re thinking of signing up for Disney+, here’s how to save two bucks per month on your new Disney+ subscription.
As we already know, the standard price for a Disney+ subscription in Singapore is $11.98 per month and $119.98 per year. But it’s possible to subscribe at a rate of $9.98 per month and $96.8 per year ($9.49 and $94.99, Android).
Yes, your suspicions are correct: this is effectively the US subscription price. We first discovered this when using ViewQwest’s Freedom DNS service, then proceeded to try it with VPNs through an M1 mobile data service.
We didn’t manage to get Tunnelbear to work but we were successful with Hotspot Shield and Express VPN, so it does work this way as well. This is not an endorsement of streaming performance via these services as we did not perform extensive testing through these VPNs; we merely checked if it was possible to sign up and stream. Just bear in mind that your mileage may vary.
Here’s how to do it
On your iOS/Android app store, log in with your local iTunes/Google Play account. Connect to a VPN (such as Express VPN) and point to the US. Install Disney+ from your local app store. If you have installed Disney+ already, you have to uninstall and do a fresh installation. When you open the app and get to the signup page, you should be able to see the US prices (converted to local currency). Sign up for Disney+ and make sure you choose to connect to your iTunes/Google Play account for the payment. Once confirmed, exit the app, close the VPN and then login again to Disney+.
This is the best way to do it to ensure you can get the price savings and still not be limited by age-restricted content. Here is the complication. If you have a US account already (like our Chief Alchemist Oo Gin Lee) then when you log into the Disney+ Singapore app, you will only be able to view content up to TV-14 rating – this is because, in the US, Disney+ content is limited to the TV-14 rating.
But if you create a new account through the method we described earlier, then you can get the cost savings thanks to the lower US subscription price, and not be limited by content-rating restrictions and geo-locked content (you can access both US and SG content libraries).
One caveat: just remember that VPN or DNS services are an additional cost as well if you aren’t already subscribed to one.
There is one major upside to doing it this way, aside from cost alone: you now have the best of both worlds – turn on your VPNs to access US content, and revert to our local edition when you turn it off. There are some noticeable differences between the two. For example, the categories are slightly different upfront; Singapore gets Ford v Ferrari but the US doesn’t and we get The New Mutants but it is missing on the US version. We’ll delve into more details about the differences once we’ve spent more time with it.
Another alternative is to go through Shopback (without all the VPN hacks), where you can cut your subscription by $1.30 per month or by $16.50 for an annual subscription.
At this point, we have to put out a little disclaimer that we have no idea if Disney will limit this level of accessibility in the near future, so please take that into account before you try this and lock yourself down to a year-long subscription.
[Updated, 24 Feb] – Updated for clarity on US-based accounts and the additional option of using Shopback for a discounted price.
We’ve only tested this to work as shown and cannot vouch for this to work for other countries. E.g. if you want to access the UK content library.
[Updated, 27 Feb] – Disney has restricted access to the US library and this workaround no longer works.