Hulu Watch Party: What is it & how to use it

Hulu has joined the wave of streaming services trying to make viewing more collaborative with the Hulu Watch Party. Like GroupWatch on Disney Plus, the Hulu Watch Party allows subscribers to watch movies and shows with fellow subscribers in different locations. Here's what you need to know to host or join a Hulu Watch Party.

Products used in this guide

  • Stream with friends: Hulu (From $6 at Hulu)

How to use the Hulu Watch Party feature

According to the Hulu website, you must be at least 18 years old to use the Hulu Watch Party feature. If you meet that requirement, here's what you need to do next.

  1. Go to Hulu.com on a supported web browser.

  2. Navigate to the Details page of the show or movie you'd like to watch.

  3. Select the Hulu Watch Party icon.

  4. Click Start the Party.

  5. To invite others to the Hulu Watch Party, select the chain icon.

  6. Copy the link and send it to other participants so they can join.

If you plan to host a Hulu Watch Party for a specific episode of a TV series, you can also select Watch Party from the Context Menu icon located on the episode page. And if you want to join a Hulu Watch Party started by someone else, use the invitation link you received from the Hulu Watch Party host.

What you'll need to get started

Hulu Watch Parties are currently limited to eight Hulu subscribers, including the host. If potential participants share the same Hulu account, they can still join the Hulu Watch Party through individual profiles. Additionally, if you've yet to subscribe, you can sign up for a Hulu free trial right now.

It's also worth pointing out that the Hulu Watch Party is currently an online-only feature, meaning you won't be able to host or join a session on your smart TV or mobile TV. Despite that restriction, the platform promises that thousands of on-demand movies and shows from its streaming library are compatible with Hulu Watch Party.

To see if a title is available, all you need to do is visit the Details page for the movie or show you want to watch and look for the Watch Party icon. If it's there, follow the above steps and start the viewing party.

How to Host a Watch Party on Hulu

If you meet the criteria, launching a Hulu Watch Party is a simple task. Simply follow these steps:

  1. Go to Hulu.com from your browser.

  2. Select a TV show or movie's details via the top-right corner button (the three vertical dots icon)

  3. Click on the Watch Party button

  4. Press Start the Party

  5. As the host, you can either select the copy party link by tapping the Share button (chain icon) next to the URL bar or at the top of the party chat.

  6. Press Start Party once everyone has joined. This will be indicated by a number at the top of the party chat.

  7. You'll see a countdown before playback occurs.

Once the video starts playing, you can start chatting or sharing emojis with other users. If you have to pause for any reason, Hulu will offer you an option to skip ahead to where the video is live.

Prior to the episode or movie ending, Hulu will also alert you that the watch party is ending soon. Sadly, you can't string together multiple episodes or movies, and you'll have to repeat the Watch Party for each instance.

Overall, if you've used the Netflix Party extension, functionality is very similar. And if you haven't, here's how to use Netflix party to watch movies together online.

How to Start a Hulu Watch Party

To set up the Watch Party, follow this simple three-step procedure:

  1. Make a specific selection from the Hulu catalog.

  2. Move to the right section of the play button. You will come across a button marked: “Watch Party.”

  3. Highlight the button and then click on it. You will get a prompt leading you to the Watch Party. The prompt further leads to a link that allows you to start sharing with others.

Note: you can only share with a maximum of 7 people. Also, keep in mind that those joining the party are required to have either a Hulu (no ads) or a + Live TV account.

A Step-By-Step Guide to Use the Hulu Watch Party

  1. Go to Hulu.com.

  2. Sign in to the Hulu ad-free account.

  3. Go to the icon designated as “Watch Party.” You will find this in the movies and shows the details page.

  4. After identifying the specific item, you wish to watch with your group members, hit the selection button.

  5. Hulu will assign you a link that you can further share with family and friends whom you invite them to the Watch Party. Keep in mind that whoever is invited must have a valid subscription for the Hulu no-ads.

  6. As soon as the invitees join, you will be able to enjoy the show together; moreover, you can start chatting together in the relevant window, located on the right part of the screen.

Alternatively:

  1. On your web browser, visit Hulu.com. Make sure to use a supported browser.

  2. Select an available title on the Watch Party. You will find the group icon located adjacent to a video.

  3. Visit the details page and tap on the icon designated as “Watch Party.”

  4. Tap on “Start Watching.”​

  5. “Go to playback mode.”

  6. To copy the Hulu Watch Party link, choose the chain icon. Send this to the other members, allowing them to join the party.

  7. For those ready to join the Watch Party, simply open the link sent by the host. In case you are using the same account, you may join via the individual profile.

Use Hulu Watch Party for a Virtual Marathon

The moment the movie night kicks off, you will be in a great position to control playback. Thus, if you want to hit rewind or pause, there will be no interruption of the group’s viewing schedule.

To return to the rest of the group:

  1. Tap on the button marked, “click to catch up.” You will get this in the chat window.

  2. Next, you can go to the details page to get the Watch Party icon; it will enable you to browse your favorite movies and shows.

Use Hulu’s Sync-with-Host Feature

Interestingly, rather than act automatically, Hulu Watch Party has a way of notifying you whenever you are out of sync, so you can hook up with your host. This usually happens when either the guest streams or the party host gets out of sync.

This feature comes in handy in case the host taps on the time bar accidentally. It is also helpful in a situation where a participant deliberately engages the fast-forward, trying to reach “the better parts” of the film or movie.

Generally, Hulu Watch Party also gives users a great selection of emojis on the chat bar, from which you can pick. This feature is only available for specific titles found on Hulu.com.

Use Hulu Watch Party with a Supported Browser

Hulu Watch Party is initially available to a select group of fans, including subscribers to the live TV service; such groups can watch it in association with friends and control the transmission process.

Note that, to enjoy this service, you must use a supported web browser, either choosing from Windows 10 Microsoft Edge, Chrome, Safari, or Firefox.