If you haven’t watched Friends, it’s time to jump on the bandwagon. The show follows a group of six friends who live in Manhattan as they attempt to navigate all the fun aspects of growing up — careers, relationships, love, and everything in between. This ten-season sitcom has become an iconic staple in pop culture — let’s be honest, who can’t relate to a bunch of twenty-somethings trying to figure out how adulting works?
Just like our six favorite friends, we’re here for you with everything you need to know about where and how to watch this classic sitcom.
What streaming services have Friends?
As of now, HBO Max is the only streaming service to offer the entire series of Friends. The sitcom was previously available on Netflix for the past 5 years and it was widely popular as one of the streaming service’s most-watched series. In fact, Netflix reportedly paid an extra $80 million to keep the series on its platform for another year. But eventually, WarnerMedia took the license back and planned to launch the series on its (at the time) newly launched HBO Max. So, as of January 1, 2020, Friends left Netflix — leaving a void in our Netflix queues and our hearts.
After leaving Netflix, Friends said “How you doin’?” to HBO Max in May 2021. However, there are a few other ways to spend some quality time with our favorite gang. One option is to buy seasons (or the entire series) on Blu-Ray or DVD, or you can purchase episodes or seasons on platforms like YouTube and Amazon. These platforms require you to purchase an episode or season once, and then it’s yours to stream forever!
Streaming services that offer Friends
|Base Price per Month||$9.99/mo. (with ads)
$14.99/mo. (no ads)
|# of On Demand Movies and Shows||2,000+ movies and 580+ TV shows|
|# of Simultaneous Streams||5|
As we’ve mentioned, HBO Max is currently the only streaming service to offer the full series of Friends. The streaming service does offer two subscription plans, though — one with ads and one without.
Can you watch Friends for free?
Thankfully, yes! Thanks to good old-fashioned television, Friends is frequently aired on a number of cable TV channels like TBS and Nick at Nite. Check your local listings and depending on your cable provider, add it to your DVR so all upcoming episodes will be recorded right to your TV. Could that be any easier?!
What is Friends about?
Friends takes us on a journey of 6 friends living life in Manhattan: Rachel, a spoiled and care-free woman who recently left her fiancé at the altar; Monica, Rachel’s high school friend and a tightly-wound and uptight chef; Phoebe, a quirky and unique musician and masseuse; Ross, Monica’s brother and straight-laced paleontologist; Joey, a struggling actor and womanizer; and Chandler, a sarcastic and witty guy who works in “statistical analysis and data reconfiguration” (it’s a running joke on the show and we’re still trying to figure out what he does for a living!). These six personalities make for interesting friendships that each have their own ways of handling work, love lives, family, and more. The best part about Friends is there’s something for everyone. Each one of us can somehow see a version of ourselves in quirky Phoebe, obsessive Monica, and fun-loving Rachel.
The show originally aired in 1994 and quickly became popular. It maintained that popularity for ten whole seasons — in fact, the series finale in 2004 was the 5th most-watched series finale in history with a reported 52.5 million viewers. Over the course of its run, Friends was widely recognized with 62 Emmy nominations (yes, you read that right…62!) including winning an Emmy award in 2002 for Outstanding Comedy Series.
Upcoming seasons and events for and on Friends
Ever since the series finale aired in May 2004, there has been talks of a reboot, movie, or some kind of reunion. While unfortunately there will be no remake of our favorite show, the cast made our dreams come true with the announcement of a reunion launching on HBO Max in 2019. Unfortunately due to the Coronavirus pandemic, filming was postponed a few times, but in May of 2021, HBO Max finally launched the reunion. The reunion, more of an unscripted documentary, features the entire cast reminiscing of their time on set and their most beloved memories. It also brings in a few special guests like Justin Beiber, Lady Gaga, and Mindy Kaling as they reflect on the show’s impact on their lives.
Best way to watch Friends
If Friends is like your comfort food (guilty!) and you want to watch certain episodes whenever and wherever you want, HBO Max is your best route. Although if you’re uninterested in watching any of HBO Max’s other content, it may be more cost-efficient to purchase certain episodes or seasons on platforms like YouTube or Amazon. Surprisingly, the least cost-effective way to watch will be on DVD! Not only will that require a DVD player to watch, but boxed sets of the series can sell for up to $100 or more. Of course, there’s always the option to record all episodes aired on cable and build up your own collection in your DVR. Whatever way you watch, we recommend watching on a couch as comfy as the one in Central Perk with one of your very own friends.