Here’s How to Watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade For Free to See the Tradition in its 95th Year

Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade
Photo: AP Photo/Eduardo Munoz Alvarez.

If the Herald Square floats are a Thanksgiving tradition in your household, you may want to know how to watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade online for free to not miss a moment of the almost-100-year-old holiday extravaganza.

The Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade started in 1924 as a march with Macy’s employees to Macy’s Herald Square, the brand’s flagship store on 34th Street in New York City. The parade saw the employees dressed in vibrant costumes, alongside floats, professional bands and live animals from the Central Park Zoo. Since that first parade, which saw an audience of more than 250,000 people, the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade has become an annual event. As of 2021, it’s tied for the second-oldest Thanksgiving Parade in the United States, alongside America’s Thanksgiving Parade in Detroit Michigan. (The oldest thanksgiving parade is Philadelphia’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, which started in 1920.)

The parade—which runs from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. on Thanksgiving and ends outside of Macy’s Herald Square—has been televised on NBC since 1953. While the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade has grown to include dozens of balloons and floats, Macy’s department store employees still have the option to march in the parade like the very first event in 1924. Since it started, watching the parade has also become a Thanksgiving morning tradition in thousands of households across the United States. So how can one watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade online for free? Read on for our tips and tricks.

When does the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade 2021 start?

The 95th annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade starts at 9 a.m. ET and airs until 12 p.m. ET on NBC.

How to watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade 2021 online free

So how can one watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade online for free? Ahead are various free tricks and tips to stream the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade live at no cost.

Watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade With Peacock’s Free Subscription

Peacock is by far the best option to watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade online for free. For the first time in the history of the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, the parade will be available to stream on Peacock, NBC Universal’s exclusive streaming service. All you have to do is sign up for a free Peacock account. Subscribers can also upgrade to Peacock Premium (with ads) for $4.99 per month or Peacock Premium Plus (with no ads) for $9.99 per month. As for what’s on Peacock, the service has more than 900 movies and 300 TV shows from NBC Universal’s properties including NBC, Bravo and E!. Read on for step-by-step instructions on how to watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade with Peacock, Peacock Premium or Peacock Premium Plus.

  1. Visit Peacock.com
  2. Create an account and sign up for Peacock, Peacock Premium or Peacock Premium Plus
  3. Search for the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade and watch it live

Watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade With XFinity’s Free Peacock Account

If you want to watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade on Peacock Premium, there is a way, but you’ll need to be an Xfinity subscriber or know someone who is. Customers who have Xfinity Flex, Xfinity X1, Xfinity Internet or Xfinity Digital Starter TV accounts can receive a Peacock Premium subscription for free. Yes, free. Peacock has a guide for how to connect your Xfinity and Peacock accounts, but we also listed the steps below. Cox subscribers, who have Cox Internet Customer with Contour Stream Player or Starter Video, also have access to free Peacock Premium subscriptions.

  1. Visit Peacock.com
  2. Create an account
  3. Link your Xfinity or Cox account
  4. Search for the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade and watch it live

Watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade With Hulu+ With Live TV’s Free Trial

Hulu+ With Live TV is another option to watch the the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade online for free. Along with access to Hulu’s library of 80,000 movies and TV shows, the service also offers more than 75 live channels, including NBC to watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, as well as 50 hours of DVR. The best part about Hulu+ With Live TV, however, is that it offers a seven-day free trial. Hulu+ With Live TV costs $65 per month if one chooses to subscribe after their trial ends.

Watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade With Fubo TV’s Free Trial

Another way to watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, online for free is with Fubo TV’s free trial. Fubo TV’s seven-day free trial.  Fubo offers more than 100 channels, including NBC to watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, as well as at least 250 hours of DVR, in case you want to watch the award show again. The service costs $65 per month after your free trial ends, so be sure to remember to cancel your trial before it expires.

Watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade With Sling $10 Deal

For those who want to watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade online live, Sling is an excellent option. Though the service doesn’t have a free trial, Sling has a current deal that offers users one month for just $10. Sling offers two plans: Sling Blue and Sling Orange. (Sling Blue is more suited for news and entertainment, while Sling Orange is better for sports and family.) Both include the $10 first-month deal and cost $35 per month after the deal ends, if one chooses to subscribe. Both also offer 50 hours of DVR and channels like NBC, which is where the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade airs. If you had to choose one, though, we recommend Sling Blue to watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. Not only does the plan include more channels, but it also allows the user to stream on three devices (Sling Orange allows only one), which means that you can split the cost with two other people, who can stream the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade (or other programs) on their own devices. (That’s just $3.33 per person.)

Who are the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade 2021 hosts?

The 95th annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade hosts are Savannah Guthrie, Hoda Kotb and Al Roker.

Who are the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade 2021 performers?

The 95th annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade performers include Carrie Underwood, Jimmie Allen, Kelly Rowland, Rob Thomas, Kristin Chenoweth, Darren Criss, Foreigner, Andy Grammer, Mickey Guyton, Chris Lane and Aespa. The parade will also include performances from the Broadway casts of Six, Moulin Rouge! The Musical and Wicked, as well as the Rockettes and the cast of the upcoming NBC live musical of Annie.

There will also be a float with the cast of Peacock’s of Girls5eva—Sara Bareilles, Renée Elise Goldsberry, Paula Pell and Busy Philipps—as well as celebrities like Nelly, Jordan Fisher and Jon Batiste. Other star include  Miss America Camille Schrier, Muppets from Sesame Street and Blue’s Clues hosts, Steve Burns, Donovan Patton and Josh Dela Cruz.

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