How to Get Past a Paywall to Read an Article for Free

Over recent years, numerous websites have introduced paywalls. These require readers to sign up and pay a subscription fee to access their articles. Some sites employ a “metered” paywall, allowing a limited number of free articles before asking for payment, while others have a hard paywall, necessitating payment for even a single article.

Paywalls are predominantly used by news websites. This shift arises because relying solely on advertising revenue is no longer sustainable, prompting news organizations to seek direct revenue streams like monthly subscriptions. Supporting quality journalism through subscriptions is valuable if you can afford it. However, if you’ve lost your password, don’t have it saved on your device, or are currently unable to pay, there are several methods to bypass paywalls online.

Bypassing Paywalls: Methods and Tips

  1. Google the Headline: Copy the article’s headline and paste it into Google. Many paywalled websites allow free access to readers arriving from Google searches.
  2. Facebook Redirect: Some sites permit free access from Facebook links. Copy the article URL, paste “” before it, and follow the link.
  3. Incognito Mode: Open the article in an incognito or private browsing window. This method works for metered paywalls where you’ve exceeded the free article limit.
  4. Disable JavaScript: Some sites use JavaScript to enforce paywalls. Disabling JavaScript can reveal the content, though it may break other website functionalities.
  5. Reader Mode: Modern browsers have a reader mode that removes ads and formatting. This can sometimes bypass paywalls.
  6. VPN: For sites that limit free articles per month, changing your IP address with a VPN can grant additional free access.
  7. Bypass Paywalls Extension: Install the Bypass Paywalls extension from GitHub for Chrome, Edge, or Firefox. It provides access to over 160 sites.
  8. Browser Add-ons: Extensions like Unpaywall and Postlight Reader help bypass paywalls and clean up web content.
  9. Edit Webpage Elements: If you know some HTML and CSS, you can inspect and hide paywall elements manually.
  10. Use Paste the article link on to view a cached, unpaywalled version of the page.
  11. Similar to, it provides access to over 150 websites.
  12. Use this to archive and access a page without a paywall.
  13. Spaywall: This site redirects you to archived versions of articles, bypassing paywalls legally.
  14. Paywall Bypass Shortcuts on Mobile: Use the Bypass Paywalls Clean extension on Android, or automation routines via Apple’s Shortcuts app on iPhone.
  15. Library Access: Many local libraries provide free access to paid subscriptions of newspapers and magazines through their portals.
  16. Gift Articles: Some publications allow subscribers to gift articles. Ask a subscribing friend or relative to share an article with you.
  17. Blendle App: Purchase single articles for a nominal fee through this news aggregator, which partners with various publishers.

Supporting Journalism

While these methods can help you access content, it’s important to support the journalism you find valuable. Subscribing when you can ensures the sustainability of quality news and information sources.

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