TV Answer Man, I don’t like that the Thursday Night games are going to be on Amazon. Is there any to watch the Chargers-Chiefs game this Thursday without having to pay for an Amazon subscription? — Frank, New Bern, North Carolina. 

Frank, Amazon this season will stream the NFL’s Thursday Night Football games, starting tomorrow night with the Los Angeles Chargers-Kansas City Chiefs game from Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City. The game, which will begin at 8 p.m. ET, will be an exclusive for Amazon, meaning it won’t be available on Fox or the NFL Network.

The game will be free to Amazon Prime members (available at the Amazon web site and the Prime Video app) but is there a way to watch it without having to pay for an Amazon Prime membership?

Yes, there are actually three ways:

1. Live in Kansas City or Los Angeles
While Amazon’s TNF games are a national exclusive for the streamer, they will still be available on a local channel in the markets where the two teams are based. In this Thursday’s case, Fox 11 (KTTV-TV) will show the Chiefs-Chargers game in the Los Angeles market while KSHB-TV in the Kansas City market will have the game.

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2. Go to a Bar
DIRECTV and Amazon last month signed a multi-year deal that will permit the satcaster to provide Amazon’s Thursday Night Football broadcasts to more than 300,000 bars, restaurants, hotel lounges and other business venues.

This is Amazon’s first year as the exclusive provider of TNF and the agreement between the companies is an acknowledgement that bars and restaurants could have difficulty streaming the games to their patrons. DIRECTV has provided a feed of the NFL Sunday Ticket to commercial establishments for years.

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If you want to find a bar near you that will show the game, DIRECTV has a Sports Bar Finder app that will allow you search your area, select your favorite bars, and filter selections by packages, channels and networks. For instance, the app will note whether the bar has an NFL Sunday Ticket subscription and/or whether it gets ESPN. (If it has ESPN, it will have access to the Amazon TNF games.)

The Sports Bar Finder app is available on Google Play and the Apple iTunes store as well as via this web page. You can see a demonstration of the app below:

3. Get a Free Trial to Amazon Prime or Sign Up For Twitch
An Amazon Prime membership costs $14.99 a month or $139 a year. (A membership plan to only Amazon Prime Video is $8.99 a month.) However, Amazon offers a 30-day free trial to anyone who hasn’t been a member in the last 12 months. That would take you through four TNF games before you have to begin paying or canceling to avoid your first payment.

In addition, Amazon will stream the games for free to Twitch gaming users.

Frank, hope that helps. Happy viewing and stay safe!

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— Phillip Swann