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The Best VPN for RTÉ Player in 2022

Want to check out what's new on RTÉ player? Unfortunately, RTÉ content is currently only available to folks living in Ireland. This is a problem for anyone located overseas - unless they have a VPN!

 

Streaming the latest RTÉ shows is easy (and free) so long as you appear to be in Ireland. A VPN can help you achieve this, but very few VPN providers actually provide servers in the Republic of Ireland. This makes it all too easy for RTÉ player to identify and block Irish VPN servers. So, you'll need to be extra picky when picking out a VPN in order to access RTÉ.

Best VPNs for RTÉ

We're constantly updating our guides - and if we find that another VPN is capable of unblocking RTÉ player, we'll add it to the list below immediately.

  1. ExpressVPN - The best VPN for RTÉ. It has plenty of servers in Ireland (and elsewhere), and works with a long list of streaming services.
  2. PrivateVPN - The best value VPN for RTÉ. It’s one of the few VPNs we've found that reliably unblocks RTÉ's full Irish catalog.
  3. VPNArea - The best secure VPN for RTÉ. A secure, no-logs provider that offers an Irish server capable of consistently unblocking RTÉ Player.

In addition to providing access to RTÉ content, the services we've hand-picked also have to meet the following key criteria:

Best RTÉ VPN: In-depth analysis

Let's take a closer look at the VPNs that made the cut! All of the providers listed below can unblock RTÉ player from outside of Ireland and come packed with all the features you'll need to stay secure. Plus, you can put any of these VPNs to the test yourself with their money-back guarantee policies.

ExpressVPN is the best VPN for RTÉ. It’s packed with features, has coverage in Ireland, and comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

  • Pricing

    • 12 months + 3 months FREE + Backblaze backup: $6.67/mth
      49% OFF
    • 6 months: $9.99/mth
    • 1 month: $12.95/mth
  • Pros

    • Lightway is super fast and secure
    • Works with a wide range of streaming services
    • Servers in 94 countries
    • Committed to unblocking RTÉ
    • Audited zero-logs provider
  • Cons

    • Port-forwarding only available on router app
    • No free trial
    • Expensive, but you get what you pay for
  • Speeds

    • 51.83 Mbps
  • Also unblocks

    • Netflix
    • iPlayer
    • Amazon Prime
    • Hulu
  • Available for

    • Windows
    • macOS
    • iOS
    • Android
    • Linux
  • Website

ExpressVPN Demo

ExpressVPN Demo ExpressVPN Demo


ExpressVPN is our top-rated VPN service for 2022, and not just for RTÉ. It's a no-logs VPN service with fantastic privacy and security features that can unblock Disney+, Hulu, and more and, unlike most of its competitors, ExpressVPN has an Irish server that can still unblock RTÉ Player. I was able to watch both Frasier and Community, which are usually unavailable on RTÉ to anyone outside of Ireland.


Unblock from anywhere


ExpressVPN has an enormous server network, spanning over 94 countries! There are no restrictions or data caps to worry about, and with servers near you no matter where you are, you'll get a quick, stable connection. Nobody wants their movies interrupted by the dreaded "buffering" message.



While Express may be an expensive choice for most, it's one of the best providers money can buy, and it's constantly updating its server network, meaning you can be confident it'll unblock RTÉ seamlessly. If you're wondering why it's not higher on the list, the answer is simply because Express only recently started dedicating itself to unblocking RTÉ.


Privacy by design


ExpressVPN' servers are also super secure. They're "RAM-only", which means they get completely wiped whenever they get switched off. On top of this, all their connections are secured with 256-bit AES encryption and they even have their own custom protocol called "Lightway". It also promises no logging of any kind, a claim that was verified when ExpressVPN invited auditors from PwC to check them out and ensure they were standing by their word.


Try it for yourself


As a result of all this, ExpressVPN is another service that we can strongly recommend to any internet user who might need to unblock RTÉ. While it doesn't offer a free trial, you can still check that it works for you risk-free, thanks to a 30-day money-back guarantee. ExpressVPN is one of our top picks not only for streaming, but for torrenting, and keeping yourself secure online.

PrivateVPN is the best value VPN for RTÉ. With top notch speeds and servers in Ireland, and seamless access to RTÉ (and other services)!

  • Pricing

    • 36 months: $2/mth
      84% OFF
    • 3 months: $6/mth
      50% OFF
    • 1 month: $9.99/mth
      17% OFF
  • Pros

    • Works with all major streaming services
    • Easy-to-use apps for all devices
    • Speedy and ideal for HD streams and online gaming
    • Sstrong OpenVPN encryption
  • Cons

    • No WireGuard support
    • A smaller pool of servers
    • Not as fast as ExpressVPN
  • Speeds

    • 23.64 Mbps
  • Also unblocks

    • Netflix
    • iPlayer
    • Amazon Prime
    • Hulu
  • Available for

    • Windows
    • macOS
    • iOS
    • Android
    • Linux
  • Website

PrivateVPN Demo

PrivateVPN Demo PrivateVPN Demo


PrivateVPN is the best budget-friendly provider we've found that unblocks the entire RTÉ catalog. That RTÉ player is available when connecting through PrivateVPN is excellent news for any Irish ex-pat or anyone who might be curious as to exactly what you can find on Ireland's national broadcaster, because until recently it was almost impossible to access all of its content from abroad. 


Stream from any device


PrivateVPN provides lightning-fast speeds for streaming, meaning you'll be able to get your fix of RTÉ shows without any annoying buffering. In addition, you can use the VPN on 6 devices simultaneously and take advantage of a tried and tested selection of encryption options, including OpenVPN; though sadly, it doesn't support WireGuard yet. You'll also be able to install PrivateVPN on just about any device you can think of – There are clients available for MacOS, Windows, iOS, Android, and Linux, as well as routers.



I love that PrivateVPN has a simple one-click connect function, so you can connect to the VPN quickly and easily. It's great for beginners and even gives users a simple or advanced view to choose from. Giving more technical users greater control and customization over the VPN.


RTÉ and more


PrivateVPN can unblock RTÉ in just a few clicks, but it doesn't stop there. PrivateVPN also works to unblock other well known streaming services like the BBC iPlayer, Amazon Prime, and Hulu. PrivateVPN is also a great choice for anyone who wants to view other Netflix libraries, thanks to dynamic, dedicated IP addresses that help keep you clear of any geo-blocking. Add to that SmartDNS integration with every VPN server, and PrivateVPN makes accessing geo-restricted content.


No-risk Trial


PrivateVPN also has a 30-day money-back guarantee so you can test the service out for yourself and make sure it's right for you as well as a great customer service team ready to help you out if you run into any problems. Not that we think you should have any issues with RTÉ, because we have tested it ourselves and can confirm that it works. However, it is always nice to know that you can get a no-questions-asked refund if you want to.

VPNArea is the best secure VPN for RTÉ. Users get Irish servers and robust encryption, as well as 24/7 customer support.

  • Pricing

    • 36 months: $2.99/mth
    • 12 months: $4.92/mth
    • 1 month: $9.9/mth
  • Pros

    • Outstanding customer care
    • Offers up to 8 simultaneous connections
    • Servers in over 55 countries
  • Cons

    • Doesn't work with Hulu or Disney+
    • Not the fastest VPN out there
    • Expensive compared to PrivateVPN
  • Speeds

    • 23.12 Mbps
  • Also unblocks

    • Netflix
    • iPlayer
    • Amazon Prime
    • Hulu
  • Available for

    • Windows
    • macOS
    • iOS
    • Android
    • Linux
  • Website

VPNArea Demo

VPNArea Demo VPNArea Demo


VPNArea is a highly trusted VPN provider from Bulgaria. It is a no-logs service with fantastic privacy and security features. This makes it a great all rounder for gaining privacy and freedom online. Unlike many of its competitors, this VPN has a server that unblocks RTÉ Player. We tested it ourselves to unblock Frasier (which is only available in Ireland) and we found it worked wonderfully.


Connectivity is King


VPNArea is no slouch when it comes to unblocking streaming content for the entire family. You can run their app on Windows, MacOS, Android, iOS, Linux, and even on an Amazon Fire Stick! We've also confirmed that, as well as RTE, you can use VPNArea with Netflix, Amazon, and BBC iPlayer. You can take advantage of over 100 locations in 55 countries, and an excellent 8 simultaneous connections – so you can access geo-restricted content from around the world on any device you own. 


Secure and robust


There's a lot to love about VPNArea's security toolbelt. 256-bit AES encryption and malware protection mean you're getting military-grade encryption, and a security suite that goes above and beyond to keep you protected online. With stealth VPN functionality, you get the ability to bypass even the most severe government censorship, by disguising your VPN traffic as regular HTML.


Confident in comparison


You can check it works well for you thanks to its 30-day money-back guarantee, backed up by 24/7 live chat and an email ticketing system to engage customer support if the worst comes to the worst. A secure and reliable VPN that will give you privacy and the ability to unblock loads of international services.

How to Unblock RTE with a VPN

While RTÉ does offer some free content, much of what it has on offer is restricted through the use of geo-blocking, which stops people watching content from countries that don't have access, or which are blocked for licensing and copyright reasons. Using a VPN allows you to get around these blocks by hiding your IP address and making it appear to come from another country. Follow the steps below to get started with unblocking RTÉ:

  1. Subscribe to a VPN service that best fits your needs – we've curated a list of services that are all tested and proven to unblock RTÉ.
  2. Download and install the VPN software on your device – most VPN services these days will run on just about any device you can think of and will allow multiple connections at once.
  3. Log in and connect to a VPN server in the country of your choice (in this case, Ireland).
  4. Go to RTÉ (remembering to create an account if necessary) and enjoy!

Why do I need a VPN to watch RTÉ?

There's a few reasons why you would need a VPN, as well as just unblocking RTÉ's content. The VPNs on this list will work regardless of where in the world you are, so if you happen to be traveling or on holiday in another country, you'll still be able to access the content as if you were in Ireland. You'll also be able to unblock content from other streaming services that would normally not be available in your country, such as Hulu, Netflix and more.

As well as access to streaming, using a VPN is a good way to protect your online identity, making sure that your real IP address is never revealed online when you're at home and protecting you when you're out and about using public Wi-Fi. You can also take advantage of the extra features like ad-blocking and malware protection that are offered by providers like VPNArea.

Compare the VPNs listed on this page 

What can I watch on RTÉ?

RTÉ is a hugely popular service that has tons of content available to stream free of charge. It also has some exclusive American content that no other British broadcaster has the rights to. In addition, it has a lot of Irish shows, like the soap opera Fair City and the Tommy Tiernan chat show. 

If you are an ex-pat living outside of Ireland, or just a TV-lover who wants to access some of the exclusives that RTÉ broadcasts, you can access its online player to watch shows by using a VPN. Some shows on the RTÉ player are available without a VPN. However, much of the content is restricted, so if you want to watch everything you will need to connect to a server in Ireland.

Unblock Gaelic Games, Sports & More

Sports fans won't want to miss GAA's Gaelic Games, and with the VPNs on the list, you'll never have to! Whether it's cycling, hurling, horse racing, boxing, or other sports competitions that pique your interest, RTÉ has you covered. As well as this, RTE has access to some content that's difficult to find anywhere else, such as Frasier, and The Terror.

Can I use a free VPN to watch RTÉ?

Free VPNs will always come with drawbacks, whether that be in terms of the speed they offer, server locations or encryption and that's assuming that they're above board and not a malicious actor trying to infect your machine with malware or steal your data. They also tend to be feature-limited, trying to entice you into spending money to upgrade. 

With most of the big names in paid VPN services blocked, it's virtually guaranteed that any free VPN service will be blocked as well. The other thing to keep in mind when using a free VPN, or really any sort of free service, is that a lot of them remain free by selling your personal data to third parties.

How does ProPrivacy review VPNs?

Searching for a VPN might seem like a straightforward task... until you realize just how many providers there are on the market! These hundreds of consumer-facing services all claim to be the best of the best, too. So how can you tell which VPNs are actually worth your time (and which are best avoided)? These are the questions the ProPrivacy team has been answering since 2013 – we're constantly putting services to the test, checking out their encryption, speeds, and unblocking power, so you can make an easy and informed choice about which VPN suits you best.

Of course, before any VPN service makes it into my top 3 VPNs for RTÉ, they have to meet some specific criteria:

Interested in learning more?

ProPrivacy has developed a thorough review process over the years – and we're constantly using it to put VPNs through their paces. If you want to know exactly how we evaluate services, head on over to our review process page for all the details.

 

Final thoughts

RTÉ Player is limited for anyone outside of Ireland; with very few shows available to stream, and as of November 2022, there are only three VPN providers we can confirm to work with RTÉ. With one of the VPN's listed here, you can completely bypass those restrictions to watch the complete Irish version of the player.

RTÉ is free, and it shows huge quantities of content, including well known American TV series. Thus, with an RTÉ VPN, you can actually see a lot of content that you would usually need to pay for on other streaming services.

  1. ExpressVPN - The best VPN for RTÉ. It has plenty of servers in Ireland (and elsewhere), and works with a long list of streaming services.
  2. PrivateVPN - The best value VPN for RTÉ. It’s one of the few VPNs we've found that reliably unblocks RTÉ's full Irish catalog.
  3. VPNArea - The best secure VPN for RTÉ. A secure, no-logs provider that offers an Irish server capable of consistently unblocking RTÉ Player.

Written by: Shaun Dewhirst

Shaun is a former IT Support Engineer who got tired of asking people if they'd tried turning it off and on again. After a few years working in that strange and nebulous industry known as "The Blockchain" he escaped a maximum security stockade to the Hertfordshire Underground. Today he survives as a reviewer of good coffee, bad movies and as a technical writer right here at ProPrivacy.

22 Comments

Chris
on August 22, 2020
Reply
ExpressVPN does not work for RTE or BBC
Lynda Mason
on February 25, 2020
Reply
Zoog has been excellent. Stopped working for Rte player today. Help.
Emma replied to Lynda Mason
on March 16, 2020
Reply
I had the same issue with ZoogVPN but as of 12th March 2020 it has been fully restored and working again. So I can continue to get receive my dose of Irish TV with ZoogVPN :-)
Charlie replied to Lynda Mason
on March 14, 2020
Reply
ZoogVPN resumed service for RTE Palyer - back to excellent.
Jim
on November 1, 2019
Reply
ZoogVPN is only one that worked for me from the list...
Leo
on October 30, 2019
Reply
Tried them all and requested my refunds which was a pain to receive. I did however find that ZoogVPN is the only one that still works with RTE, so not sure why the others are on the list. They are pretty cheap so I have kept the subscription for RTE and Netflix with them.
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