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YouTube TV can record your favorite holiday movies. Here's what to do

Don't miss out on watching Home Alone or A Christmas Story because you didn't DVR it on YouTube TV.

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Angela Lang/CNET
This story is part of Holiday Survival Guide 2019, featuring tips on the best ways to manage the holiday season.

'Tis the season of cozying up on the couch, sipping hot cocoa and thinking about every holiday movie you want to watch before the end of the year. Fortunately, you can record them on the YouTube TV app using your smart TV, Fire TV, phone or desktop and watch any time from almost anywhere, like when you're traveling in a car or plane, or snuggled up under the covers.

Your YouTube TV subscription ($50 per month) includes an unlimited DVR, so recording shows won't take up space on your device. This means you can record as many Christmas movies as you want, like The Nightmare Before Christmas, The Santa Clause and Elf, without worrying about how much storage is being used on your phone. 

Also, any show you add to your library will be available across all your devices, so you won't have to keep adding them on each device. Your YouTube TV subscription also lets you set up notifications on your phone for future shows you know you'll want to watch while they're airing, like the news. Here's how to get started on recording your favorite movies just in time for the holidays (and a list of holiday movies YouTube TV has to offer). And remember, you can use this to record any show or movie on YouTube TV in the future.

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Screenshot by Katie Conner/CNET
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Screenshot by Katie Conner/CNET

Record a program to watch later

If you're browsing the live channel list on YouTube TV and notice a holiday movie is coming on that you want to see, you can record it to watch later.

1. Open the YouTube TV app on your smart TV, phone or desktop computer.

2. Select Live.

3. Browse through the channels until you find the holiday show you're looking for. 

4. Click on the movie or show you want to watch.

5. Tap the plus sign icon (+). This is what will record your shows.

6. After the show has finished recording, you can access it in the Library tab -- this is located at the bottom of the screen in the app and top of the screen on desktop.

Looking for a specific movie? Use the search bar to look it up and record it.

Set up notifications to watch live shows in the future

If you prefer to watch something live -- for example, the ball dropping on New Year's Eve -- you can set up notifications to remind you when it's time to watch. You can use your Android, iPhone ($699 at Apple) or iPad ($369 at Walmart) to receive notifications (unfortunately you can't do this on your laptop or smart TV).

1. Open the YouTube TV app on your phone.

2. Find the show you'd like to watch live.

3. Tap the icon of the three stacked dots.

4. Select Notify me about [name of your show].

5. Tap Next and then Allow to receive notifications from YouTube TV.

6. When the show is about to start, you'll be notified.

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Screenshot by Katie Conner/CNET

Some classic holiday movies available on YouTube TV

Ready for more YouTube tips? Check out these nine hidden YouTube features we found and six YouTube tricks you didn't know about for watching videos on your TV.

Originally published earlier this week.

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