Charlie Brown and Linus in A Charlie Brown Christmas
IMDB/Lee Mendelson Film Productions

How to Watch 'A Charlie Brown Christmas' This Holiday Season

It's not Christmas without Charlie Brown and his tree.

Every family has a festive tradition they're awaiting come Christmastime. It might be whipping up a time-honored recipe, or creating a playlist of favorite Christmas songs. For many broods, achieving holiday togetherness is as simple as putting on a favorite family Christmas flick. And you can't go wrong with the Peanuts movies and their vintage, family-friendly cheer.

The Peanuts films are a staple of holiday cinema, gracing our screens during the most wonderful times of the year. There's "It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown" and "A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving." But the jewel in the Peanuts crown has to be "A Charlie Brown Christmas," which still stands as one of the most beloved films of all time. Families have snuggled up by the TV to watch this Christmas classic every year since its 1965 debut. 2023 will be no different. But this year, the holiday staple won't be coming to cable.

Fear not: There are a couple ways committed Peanuts enthusiasts can tune in to the magic this Christmas. Here's how you can watch "A Charlie Brown Christmas" for free in 2023.

Where to Watch 'A Charlie Brown Christmas' 2023

scene from a Charlie Brown Christmas movie

IMDB/Lee Mendelson Film Productions

For the past few years, "A Charlie Brown Christmas" and the other Charlie Brown specials have all aired on PBS. But, in a tweet last year, PBS announced that "regretfully," they "do not have the rights to distribute the Peanuts specials this year." So where does this leave families in search of this holiday classic? Well, those who happen to be Apple TV+ subscribers are in luck!

"A Charlie Brown Christmas" is currently available to stream on Apple TV+, along with the other popular Peanuts specials. Apple acquired the rights to the Peanuts holiday gallery in 2020. And Christmas may be coming early this year, because from Dec. 16-17, Apple TV+ will make "A Charlie Brown Christmas" available for free, even to non-subscribers. Just sign in to Apple TV+ with your Apple ID (all iPhone users have one) and you can watch this Christmas classic on whichever device you desire. It's a smaller window than was offered in past years, but it's still a great option for non-subscribers.

It's also worth noting that AppleTV+ offers 7-day free trials, so you can sign up to catch the Peanuts gang during your trial week. After that, it will cost $9.99/month for an ongoing plan.

Because of an exclusive deal signed between Apple TV+ and Peanuts Worldwide, "A Charlie Brown Brown Christmas" won't be available on any other streaming platform. That includes Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime and the like. So don't miss out on your chance to pop into this Christmas classic for the umpteenth time. It just never gets old.

READ MORE: The 12 Best New Christmas Movies of 2023 + Where to Watch Them