The first thing to know before subscribing to Hulu is that live channels only come with the Hulu + Live TV plans. There are a total of four main plans, depending on whether the on-demand content is ad-free.
This page explains the key differences between these plans and we also dive into the list of channels offered on Hulu.
In a hurry? Try one month for $69.99.
Read on to find out what channels and categories you get with the live TV plans and which networks you need to pay an additional monthly fee for.
Table Of Contents
If we include Hulu’s bundle packages and student discount plan, there are seven plans to choose from. Here’s a brief rundown of how much each of these plans cost per month.
None of them require a contract and can be canceled at any time.
Pricing ranges from as little as $1.99/mo for the student rate for the base on-demand plan all the way up to $153.91 for the live TV plan with every add-on (with well over 100 channels including all the premium ones).
|Hulu On-Demand for Students||$1.99|
|Hulu On-Demand (No Ads)||$12.99|
|Hulu On-Demand with Disney+ and ESPN+||$13.99|
|Hulu On-Demand with Disney+ and ESPN+ (No Ads)||$19.99|
|Hulu + Live TV with Disney+ and ESPN+||$69.99|
|Hulu + Live TV with Disney+ and ESPN+ (No Ads)||$75.99|
Note that Hulu does offer 1-year subscriptions for its Hulu On-Demand plan for $69.99/year. This is a discount of roughly 16%. You do, however, trade the discount for the freedom to cancel the service as you wish. And this discount does not apply to any other plans including those with Live TV.
If you were to buy a Disney+ monthly subscription separately, it would cost $7.99 per month, while the ESPN+ monthly membership is priced at $9.99/mo. With the Hulu bundles, they’re both significantly cheaper. And, of course, they come with Hulu + Live TV.
Hulu On-Demand With or Without Ads
Students can also get the basic ad-supported plan for $1.99 per month.
With the Hulu (No Ads) plan, you’re given access to offline streaming where you can download content from the online streaming library and watch it later. With the exception of a few titles like Grey’s Anatomy, there are no commercials with this plan.
Even the shows exempt from the ad-free plan are played without interruption, and the ads are placed either before or after the stream.
Both on-demand plans come with access to over 2,500 movies, TV shows, and documentaries, including Hulu Originals, FX on Hulu, and a variety of categorized titles. You can also create six user profiles, with which you can use the account on two simultaneous screens.
As we mentioned earlier, the on-demand subscription can also be bundled with ESPN+ and Disney+, with ads for $13.99/mo or ad-free for $19.99/mo. See the add-on section to find out what else you can buy with the on-demand plans.
Hulu + Live TV With or Without Ads
As with the on-demand plans, Hulu + Live TV plans come with or without ads. But this refers only to the on-demand content. By its nature, you cannot skip commercials on live TV. You can, however, record live TV on the included DVR and fast-forward through commercials.
Hulu + Live TV with ads costs $69.99/mo and an extra $6 for ad-free on-demand content, setting you back $75.99 per month. If you’re an on-demand customer, you can upgrade with a few clicks in the “Account” menu.
The Hulu Live TV plans come with unlimited cloud DVR storage where you can record live TV programs and watch them later. They are stored for a maximum of 9 months.
You are allowed to stream on up to two devices at the same time but you can upgrade this to unlimited for $9.99/mo.
Hulu + Live TV Channels
The 85+ channels with Hulu + Live TV have a good range of categories. There are over a dozen sports channels and lots of family-friendly networks. There are many premium channels available as add-ons.
The 4 big network channels are available on Hulu: ABC, CBS, Fox, and NBC. Telemundo and The CW are also widely available. Along with the regional sports networks, the availability of these channels depends on the location where you watch Hulu.
You can check what channels are available in your area on Hulu’s website.
Here’s the non-local channel lineup for the base Hulu + Live TV package:
Sports Channels on Hulu Live TV
The Hulu + Live TV plan gives sports fans access to a fair selection of sports channels you’d pay good money for via cable TV. Here’s the list of sports networks as well as popular sports you can catch with Hulu online without cable.
|Sports Channel||Live Sports and Leagues|
|CBSSN||Baseball, Basketball, Football, Hockey, Lacrosse, Soccer, Ultimate, Volleyball, and Wrestling|
|Golf Channel||Major golf tournaments live|
|ESPN, ESPN2, ESPN News, ESPNU, ESPN College Extra||College Basketball, College Football, Golf, MLB, NASCAR, NBA, NFL, NHL, Soccer, and Tennis|
|FS1, FS2||Boxing, College Basketball, College Football, MLB, NASCAR, Soccer, and USGA Golf|
|NFL Network||NFL games and related content|
|Olympic Channel||Olympic sporting events (region dependent)|
|ACCN, B1G, SECN||College Baseball, Basketball, Football, Golf, Soccer, Tennis, and Olympic sports|
Regional Sports Networks
These sports channels are only available in particular US regions, so use the ZIP Code checker to see if your area is covered.
- NBC Sports Bay Area
- NBC Sports Boston
- NBC Sports California
- NBC Sports Chicago
- NBC Sports Philadelphia
- NBC Sports Washington
- SportsNet NY.
Movie Networks on Hulu
Plus, you get access to plenty of titles in the on-demand library.
If movies are an important part of a good streaming plan for you, there are four premium movie add-ons available.
Family-Friendly Channels On Hulu
There is no shortage of family-friendly channels on Hulu + Live TV. By family-friendly we mean everything from cartoons to travel and nature.
When you create a new profile under “Accounts” > “Profiles,” you can switch on the “kid-friendly” toggle and the profile will only have access to channels considered kid-friendly.
Nature channel lovers will find Animal Planet, National Geographic, and Nat Geo Wild on Hulu. Discovery Channel and Investigation Discovery (ID) are also partially nature-focused channels, though you may consider these as “Travel and Lifestyle.”
Fox Business and MotorTrend are likewise there for the economics and motor-inclined, though the former might not be so interesting for three-to-five-year-olds!
Add-On Networks and Channels
The premium movie network add-ons cover most of what movie fanatics might look for, but for an extra monthly price. These add-ons do not come with additional live TV channels, but a ton of on-demand content.
- HBO Max for $14.99 per month
- Showtime for $10.99 per month
- Cinemax for $9.99 per month
- Starz for $8.99 per month.
As with the movie networks, the ESPN+ and Disney+ add-ons also don’t come with extra live channels, but on-demand content. See the list of bundles and plans for their discounted prices.
There’s more. With the Entertainment add-on for $7.99 per month, there are 16 additional live channels.
These are American Heroes Channel (AHC), BET Her, CNBC World, Cooking Channel, Crime + Investigation, Destination America, Discovery Family, Discovery Life, Magnolia Network, Military History, GAC Family, Nicktoons, MTV2, MTV Classic, Science, and TeenNick.
If you speak Spanish or want to learn Spanish from TV, you can get seven Spanish channels for an additional $4.99 per month. These are CNN en Español, Discovery en Español, Discovery Familia, ESPN Deportes, Fox Deportes, History en Español, and Universo.
If you want to watch live TV from more than two devices at once, there’s the unlimited screens add-on for $9.99 per month. This is especially great for large and diverse households. It also allows you to stream on up to 3 devices away from home.
Hulu + Live TV Channel Comparison
The following table compares the channels that are offered by Hulu + Live TV, FuboTV, and DIRECTV STREAM. A ✔️ means it is included with the base plan, a 💲 means it is available with an add-on or higher-priced plan, and a ❌ means it isn’t available at all.
|BBC World News||❌||💲||💲|
|CNN en Español||💲||❌||✔️|
|Crime + Investigation||💲||❌||💲|
|Discovery en Español||💲||💲||💲|
|ESPN College Extra||✔️||❌||❌|
|Fox Soccer Plus||❌||💲||❌|
|Game Show Network||❌||💲||💲|
|Hallmark Movies & Mysteries||❌||✔️||✔️|
|Heroes & Icons||❌||❌||💲|
|History en Español||💲||❌||💲|
|Home Shopping Network||❌||❌||✔️|
|Law & Crime||❌||💲||❌|
|MLB Strike Zone||❌||💲||❌|
|Nat Geo Wild||✔️||💲||💲|
|NBC News Now||✔️||✔️||❌|
|Next Level Sports||❌||💲||❌|
|Sony Movie Channel||❌||💲||💲|
|World Fishing Network||❌||💲||❌|
The question is, what do you need? If you’re in the market for live TV channels, then the Hulu + Live TV plan for $69.99/mo is worth considering.
Larger families or bigger groups who want to stream on more than two devices will probably stay away from the on-demand plans, since no more than two screens can stream at a time.
The 85+ channels that come with Hulu + Live TV constitutes a full-cable replacement service and a lot more for a very appealing price.
If Hulu + Live TV isn’t quite right for you, check out our reviews of other streaming TV providers: DIRECTV STREAM, FuboTV, Sling TV, and YouTube TV. If your family can live without live sports, check out Philo – it’s only $25/mo!
Are Hulu channels in HD?
Not all Hulu channels are streamable in HD, because live channel quality also depends on the quality of the stream provided by the channel operator. That said, most live channels are available in high definition above 720p. Hulu’s on-demand content library is also available in 720p, 1080p, and 4k at 60 frames-per-second HD. See the internet speed recommendations listed in our review, too.
What live channels are on Hulu basic package?
The Hulu basic package has no live channels because it is an on-demand streaming service with a library of pre-uploaded content accessible online. To get live TV channels with Hulu, see this review of the Hulu + Live TV plan, or refer to the complete live TV channel list further up the page.
How many channels does Hulu offer?
Hulu’s live TV subscription offers access to over 85 channels without cable. The number of available live channels you see in your Hulu channel guide will also depend on your location. Local networks like ABC and Fox are not available in some areas. Similar restrictions apply to regional sports networks. Check what channels are covered under your ZIP Code.
How do I get Hulu with no ads?
There are two main Hulu plans, the on-demand plan and the live TV plan — both come as an ad-free version for on-demand content. This costs an additional $6/mo. When you are ready to sign up to Hulu, be sure to select the plan with the “(No Ads)'” display on the website. If you are already a Hulu customer, look for the “Account” > “Manage Plan” menu and switch to a “No Ads” plan.
Is Hulu free for students?
Hulu is not free for students, but eligible students do get a discounted rate of $1.99 per month for Hulu on-demand with ads. The discount is valid for college students and the plan can still be canceled at any time. Eligible students need to be enrolled at a US Title IV accredited college or university and are verified via SheerID.
Is HBO free with Hulu?
You can get HBO Max with Hulu + Live TV for $14.99 per month extra. This includes all the on-demand content as well as the 7 linear HBO channels: HBO, HBO 2, HBO Comedy, HBO Family, HBO Latino, HBO Signature (focused on female audience), and HBO Zone (focused on a younger audience).
How can I switch plans with Hulu?
If you’re already subscribed to Hulu and want to switch plans, go to “Account” > “Manage Plan.” When you enter this menu, you’ll see the option to switch to Hulu’s solo plans, bundle plans, and discounted 1-year plans. You can also purchase add-ons here. In this menu, you can switch plans with two clicks — or taps on responsive devices.
What devices can I watch Hulu Live TV on?
You can stream Hulu Live TV on Android phones and tablets, selected Android TV models, Apple TV (4th generation or later), Chromecast, Echo Show, Fire Tablets, Fire TV, Fire TV Stick, iPhones, iPads, some LG and Samsung TV models, Nintendo Switch, browsers or browser apps on Mac and PC, PlayStation, newer Roku models, VIZIO SmartCast TVs, Xbox, Xfinity Flex Streaming TV Box, and Xfinity X1 TV Boxes.
For the exact model requirements, see our Hulu + Live TV Device Guide.
What other services have large on-demand libraries?
Netflix is the original, and still one of the largest. Hulu was second, and also remains an industry leader. Amazon Prime Video was a little later to the party, but it’s still been around for a while. Disney+, HBO Max, and Apple TV+ are also other great choices for a wide variety of high-quality video entertainment for all ages.
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