Where to Watch Christmas TV Programs (2019)

It's the most wonderful time of the year, isn't it? The Christmas TV movies have already begun airing. The viewing options for Christmas movies and specials during November and December each year can get a little overwhelming. Let me update you with the details of where to find the best holiday programming for 2019.

Hallmark's Countdown to Christmas block of holiday movies has already begun.

Christmas TV Movies:

For many Christmas TV movie fans, the Hallmark Channel is the network schedule to check first.  In 2019, Hallmark will be debuting 24 new Christmas TV movies, alongside many classics from their archives. If you didn't already know, the movie marathon has already begun--it started Friday, October 25th--and continues all day and all night through the end of December. They typically debut their new holiday movies on Saturday and Sunday nights. HERE is link to a checklist of Hallmark's Christmas TV movie premieres. The daily schedule of their holiday movies can be found on their website HERE.

Click on image to enlarge: the 2019 Hallmark *updated* movie debut schedule. I know it's frustrating--they always make changes.

HMM's *updated* schedule of movie debuts. Click on it to enlarge.

Hallmark's sister channel--Hallmark Movies and Mysteries (HMM)--also airs new Christmas TV movies and older classics. In fact, the older holiday movies they broadcast are pulled from a deeper archive so this is the place to see some of your older Hallmark Christmas TV movie favorites. Between Hallmark and HMM, this company will premiere 40 new movies this holiday season alone. Whew! Have you already started watching them?

Their original schedule had them rolling out their new movies on Thursday and Friday nights. However, and *please note* they have changed this schedule and moved their rest of their premieres to Saturday and Sunday nights (I think they are feeling the heat from Lifetime's debuts). So make sure you follow the updated schedules.

This is the seventh year that HMM is premiering their own new Christmas TV movies--this year they have sixteen new movies.  Click HERE for the checklist of HMM Christmas movies debuts. And, just like the Hallmark Channel, HMM has already begun their holiday programming--which will continue through the end of the holidays.  Click HERE for the link to the daily HMM Christmas movie schedule.

Lifetime is debuting 30 new Christmas TV movies in 2019 as well. I know, right? Those new movies will be airing on Saturday and Sunday nights. Click HERE for more info about each of those. Lifetime is all-in on the Christmas TV movies this year. They also started airing a 24/7 marathon of their new movies and Christmas classics from their archives. You don't want to miss out. I'm looking forward to their new movie "You Light Up My Christmas" which debuts on Dec.1st. It features cast members from the TV series The Facts of Life--I can hardly wait. Click HERE for the daily schedule of Lifetime Christmas movies.

Freeform's 25 Days of Christmas 2019 schedule. Click on image to enlarge.
Freeform is another major source of holiday programming every year. But I didn't need to tell you that, right?  We're all familiar with their marathons of Christmas animation, Christmas movies, and family-friendly entertainment. Freeform's 25 Days of Christmas programming marathon begin Dec. 1st. Click HERE for the on-line schedule.

Click on image to enlarge. 2019 schedule for UpTV.

UP TV Network will also debut 10 new family-friendly Christmas TV movies, as well as showing older favorites too. This year, the schedule looks exciting. I already shared on the website about their new movie "A Christmas Movie Christmas"--a hilarious send-up of the tropes found within Christmas TV movies. See that again HERE.  For more info about UP TV's 2019 Christmas programming, click HERE.

ION Television's schedule is filled with holiday movies too. They begin airing their holiday movies starting Sunday, Dec.1st. Look for the movie premieres on Saturday and Sunday nights. This year, they are debuting six new Christmas TV movies as well as airing favorites from the past. Click HERE for the complete schedule.

OWN is debuting new Christmas TV movies in 2019 as well.

OWN is entering the Christmas TV movie business this year too. Their holiday movies feature African-American characters in the lead roles. This is exciting! They have three new holiday movies each making their debut on Friday nights in November. Don't miss out. Click HERE for the OWN Christmas TV movie schedule on their website. TV One usually debuts a Christmas TV movie or two each year featuring African-American characters in the lead as well. This year's new movie is "Dear Santa I Need a Date" premiering Sunday, Dec. 8th. Here's more info on their website.

And of course, Netflix is debuting six new Christmas movies on their streaming service. Several of those movies have already premiered, including Klaus, an animated feature. So many Christmas movies, so little time, right?

Classic Christmas Specials and Episodes:
Every year one of the MOST EXCITING holiday programming schedules has to be GetTV. They pull out all the stops every year! What I'm most looking forward to watching are the older Christmas TV movies, The Soul & Spirit of Christmas, 2017's A Nashville Christmas special, classic Perry Como Christmas specials, the Mac Davis Christmas Special, classic Johnny Cash Christmas music specials, a best-of Andy Williams Christmas special, and the Father Knows Best Christmas TV movie reunion. There's even a marathon of Bing Crosby Christmas TV specials scheduled for Friday after Thanksgiving--don't miss it! There's so much good stuff on their schedule, I'm overwhelmed--and you should be too. This is an abundance of riches. Check out the 3-page GetTV holiday schedule HERE.

Me TV is rolling out their retro programming's Christmas installments on Sunday afternoon marathons throughout the holiday season. HERE's the schedule of episodes for the Sunday marathons.If you scroll down their schedule from the link above, you'll see additional holiday episodes airing beyond the Sunday marathons. Look at all those Thanksgiving episodes!! Enjoy.
Antenna TV, another retro programming network, usually airs a Christmas Eve and Christmas Day marathon of holiday episodes from their current classic TV line-up. I hope they repeat that tradition.

AMC has invested in airing a tremendous amount of holiday programming too. Their website says it all begins Nov. 25th, but they still don't have a posted schedule. Here's a list of all the Christmas movies and animation coming on AMC.

The 87th annual tree lighting ceremony in Rockefeller Center is Dec. 4th on NBC.

Major Networks:
Of course, the major networks have their holiday programming as well. NBC is already promoting their annual screenings of the 1946 movie It's a Wonderful Life (Nov. 30th and again on Dec. 24th). Christmas in Rockefeller Center, the live concert and tree lighting ceremony always airs the first Wednesday after Thanksgiving (Dec. 4th this year). There's also Holidays with the Houghs--Derek and Julianne Hough, that is. Their special debuts on Dec. 16th at 10pm(ET). Don't say "Christmas variety on TV is dead" if you don't watch it! NBC is also airing classics from the past. Check out their schedule HERE.

ABC is once again airing the variety special CMA Country Christmas. This year's concert features a new host Trisha Yearwood. It airs Tuesday, Dec. 3rd at 9pm(ET). They are also airing A Charlie Brown Christmas, Rankin/Bass' Santa Claus is Comin' to Town, The Great Christmas Light Fight, Olaf's Frozen Adventure, Prep & Landing, and more. For more on ABC's holiday programming, click HERE.

CBS is airing the animated classic Frosty the Snowman again this year. This is exciting because it is the 50th anniversary of Frosty the Snowman--an important part of Christmas TV history. Earlier in the year when networks were releasing their holiday schedules, Frosty was included in several other networks' airings and it wasn't certain if CBS would also continue to air it. But it will be airing on Friday, Nov. 29th. That means Frosty has aired EVERY YEAR on CBS since its original debut back in 1969. What a tremendous history. There's really nothing else to compare it to in TV history!

Look for Frosty and Frosty Returns on Friday, Nov. 29th, and Rudolph will air on Monday, Dec. 2nd. The colorized 1956 Christmas episode of I Love Lucy will air on Friday, Dec. 20th. For more about CBS's holiday programming, click HERE.

Stay close to my social media links for more announcements about fantastic holiday programming. If you'd like reminders of the new Christmas TV movie debuts and other exciting holiday TV  programming, don't forget to follow my Facebook page Tis The Season TV and/or my tweets at @TisTheSeasonTV.  Where on the metaphorical television dial do you watch your favorite Christmas movies and specials?  Feel free to share in the comments below.

Joanna Wilson is a TV researcher and book author specializing in Christmas entertainment. More about the TV programs mentioned on this website can be found in her book "Tis the Season TV: the Encyclopedia of Christmas-themed Episodes, Specials, and Made-for-TV Movies." Her latest book "Triple Dog Dare: Watching--& Surviving--the 24-Hour Marathon of A Christmas Story" was released in 2016. She is currently updating and expanding the encyclopedia for a 2020 release. Her books can be found at the publisher's website: 1701 press.com

*Support this website and its research by purchasing the books at 1701 press.com

Where to Watch Christmas TV Programs (2019)