Best VPN for Netflix 2020 | TESTED & VERIFIED [DAILY]

Netflix has well over 5,700 TV shows and movies in its library of content, but it doesn't make all of this content available to its users around the world. Subscribers in the UK, for example, only get access to 2,967 titles, while those in Germany are limited to 1,785. Many countries across Asia and Africa are limited to just a few hundred titles. 

Using a Netflix VPN, you can unlock the full potential of your subscription and increase the amount of content you have available. All you need to do is subscribe to a VPN that works with Netflix, connect to a server in the United States and you can use your current subscription to watch the complete Netflix catalog.

But there is a catch (of course). Netflix actively blocks VPNs and dedicates significant resources to making sure VPNs cannot be used for this purpose. There are only a handful of VPNs willing to enter this perpetual game of cat and mouse. As you can imagine, it's both expensive and time-consuming trying to stay one step ahead of the largest media organization on the planet.

ProPrivacy tests each of the VPNs on this list on a daily basis. We use a set of automated tests and our in house team of researchers manually verify the results. Every VPN on our list works with Netflix USA at a minimum and many unlock additional regions such as Japan, Germany and France.

VPNs that work with Netflix in 2020

  1. ExpressVPN - A reliable VPN that provides excellent stability and connection speeds on its Netflix-ready servers
  2. NordVPN - Great for speed thanks to its SmartPlay technology
  3. PrivateVPN - Access to more regional libraries than any other VPN
  4. CyberGhost VPN - Only VPN to guarantee it will work with Netflix US
  5. Ivacy - A fast provider with built-in Netflix channel
  1. ExpressVPN - A reliable VPN that provides excellent stability and connection speeds on its Netflix-ready servers
  2. NordVPN - Great for speed thanks to its SmartPlay technology
  3. PrivateVPN - Access to more regional libraries than any other VPN
  4. VyprVPN - Best for the US Netflix library only.
  5. Ivacy - A fast provider with built-in Netflix channel

Why are these the best Netflix VPNs:

1. ExpressVPN

ExpressVPN is a reliable VPN that provides excellent stability and connection speeds on its Netflix-ready servers

  • Pricing

    From $6.67 / month
  • Available on

    • Android
    • iOS
    • Windows
    • MacOS
    • Linux
  • Unblocks

    • Netflix
    • iPlayer
    • Amazon Prime
    • Hulu

Website:ExpressVPN.com
Money-Back Guarantee: 30 days 

ExpressVPN on devices

ExpressVPN remains one of the best-known names in the industry and always seems to stay one step ahead of Netflix. 

One of the stand out features that makes ExpressVPN a great choice for Netflix users is the built-in speed testing tool. 

The ExpressVPN apps for Windows and Mac allow you to run tests on server locations to check the latency and download speed of each VPN server. The software then ranks them by Speed Index. The higher the number, the better the performance.

This is incredibly useful for Netflix streaming. All you need to do run the Speed Test and choose the US server location with the highest Speed Index.

ExpressVPN server list

Most people simply want access to the largest content library, which is Netflix USA, but ExpressVPN also does a great job at unlocking regional libraries like Netflix UK, Canada, France and Japan. This is useful if you are traveling and want to continue watching content in your home country or simply want to your fix of anime.

2. NordVPN

NordVPN is great for speed thanks to its SmartPlay technology

  • Pricing

    From $3.49 / month
  • Available on

    • MacOS
    • Android
    • iOS
    • Windows
  • Unblocks

    • Netflix
    • iPlayer
    • Amazon Prime
    • Hulu

Best Overall VPN 2019
Website:NordVPN.com | Money-Back Guarantee: 30 days 

NordVPN windows app

NordVPN remains one the best VPNs for Netflix USA. One of the biggest issues that people have when using a VPN to access Netflix is buffering. Generally speaking, the further you are away from the VPN server, the slower your connection will be. NordVPN sidesteps this issue thanks to a special feature called SmartPlay.

SmartPlay is a built-in proxy service that re-routes your requests to stream Netflix through a server located in the USA, regardless of which VPN server you connect to. For example, if you live in Australia, you can connect to a server in Australia and still watch Netflix USA. SmartPlay is implemented by default and can be accessed using all NordVPN apps.

We have tested NordVPN and you can watch Netflix US using ANY server with the exception of those in the United Kingdom, Canada, Japan, France, Germany, and Italy. That's because NordVPN also provides access to these regional Netflix libraries. For people located in these regions that want to access Netflix USA, you will need to connect to a server in a different country (our recommendation is to use a server based as close to your true location as possible i.e. a neighbouring country).

We can also confirm that you can access regional libraries in  United Kingdom, Canada, Japan, France, Germany, and Italy by connecting to any server in that particular region.

NordVPN smartplay

It takes a while to wrap your head around the mechanics of SmartPlay, but once you understand which server you need to connect to, the results are very impressive, with virtually no drops in streaming performance.

NordVPN is affordable, and its VPN apps are available for all platforms. It will also unlock BBC iPlayer and hulu. The NordVPN apps are extremely easy to use and this service features 24/7 live chat support. Try this premium VPN today with its 30-day money-back guarantee.

3. PrivateVPN

PrivateVPN can access more regional libraries than any other VPN

  • Pricing

    From $1.89 / month
  • Available on

    • Android
    • iOS
    • Windows
    • MacOS
    • Linux
  • Unblocks

    • Netflix
    • iPlayer
    • Amazon Prime
    • Hulu

Website:PrivateVPN.com | Money-Back Guarantee: 30 days

PrivateVPN devices

PrivateVPN is a popular Swedish VPN service that provides access to more Netflix catalogs than almost any other VPN. 

It's stand-out feature really is the number of regional libraries it works with. If you consider that even some of the more premium options can only access three or four catalogs (USA, UK, Germany, France and Japan tend to be the most sought after), PrivateVPN is able to tap into a staggering 19 local Netflix libraries (give or take).

This makes it a great choice for anyone looking to access content from their home country while traveling.

server list

When it comes to these smaller libraries, nobody does it quite as well as PrivateVPN. The provider says it purchases its internet capacity directly from IP transit providers and its 'High-quality-network' (HQN) servers mean you won’t experience major speed cuts. 

In our testing, we haven't found it to be the fastest VPN on the market; but it's no slouch either. And when you consider this is one of the cheapest VPNs on our list, it's hard to not seriously consider PrivateVPN

4. CyberGhost VPN

CyberGhost is the only VPN to guarantee it will work with Netflix US

  • Pricing

    From $2.75 / month
  • Available on

    • Android
    • iOS
    • Windows
    • MacOS
    • Linux
  • Unblocks

    • Netflix
    • iPlayer

Best Value Award 2019
Website: CyberGhostVPN.com | Money-Back Guarantee: 45 days

CyberghostVPN devices

CyberGhost VPN is unique in that it guarantees access to Netflix US when connected to one of its 'streaming optimized servers'. We haven't tested this guarantee out, but that's because it always seems to work.

Unlike some other providers on the list, CyberGhost VPN doesn't offer access to all of the regional libraries. At the moment, it officially supports France and Germany. The company says that it supports Netflix UK too, but only if the subscription was purchased in the United Kingdom to begin with. This seems like an issue unique to CyberGhost but the company says it is due to policy changes at Netflix. The vast majority of people want to connect to Netflix USA anyway, so it might be a moot point.

CyberGhostVPN server list

All you need to do is connect to the US streaming server for Netflix and this easy to use service automatically connects you to one of 40+ servers specially reserved for Netflix. This stops you from connecting to a server that is congested. CyberGhosts’s Netflix servers average at 30 Mbps; which is good enough to stream in 4K. You can even try this Netflix free for 45 whole days - thanks to CyberGhost’s industry-leading money-back guarantee. 


5. Ivacy

IvacyVPN is a fast provider with built-in Netflix channel

  • Pricing

    From $1.33 / month
  • Available on

    • iOS
    • Windows
    • Android
    • Linux
    • MacOS
  • Unblocks

    • Amazon Prime
    • Hulu
    • Netflix
    • iPlayer

Fastest VPN Award 2019
Website: Ivacy.com | Money-Back Guarantee: 30 days

ivacyVPN devices

Ivacy is one of the few providers to boast being able to access most regional Netflix libraries. The only other provider on our list that manages this feat is PrivateVPN. This makes it a great choice for those that want to access content in specific languages that is not available in the English speaking libraries. 

Ivacy consistently tops the ProPrivacy Speed Tests and won our coveted Fastest VPN Award last year. If you don't have a great deal of bandwidth to play with, Ivacy could be worth a shot.

The provider has done a lot of work to remove the hassle from streaming Netflix by introducing its 'channels' feature. This essentially bridges the gap between a TV guide and a VPN by offering one click access to various streaming services. 

Ivacy's streaming servers


Open the app, click the Netflix channel and let the magic happen. It also makes it easy to connect to other services - everything from hulu to ABC.

The truth is, this feature isn't doing anything other than removing a few clicks, but if you are new to the world of VPNs or just like the idea of having an 'entertainment control panel' - it's a nice little feature to have.

Its apps are available for all platforms and are really easy to use. It features a 24/7 customer care should you need any help and you can test it using its 30-day money-back guarantee.


Other VPNs that work with Netflix

Below is a list of other VPNs that we have confirmed work with Netflix but didn't quite make our top 5 list: 

  1. Hotspot Shield

    Hotspot Shield is a well-known VPN that has been downloaded millions of times. Unfortunately, there is no point using the free version to access Netflix because it does not work. On the other hand, if you splash out and get a subscription - it will unlock Netflix US. The service is very fast thanks to its proprietary Catapult Hydra protocol. Admittedly, there is some risk that comes from trusting closed source software. But if you are after Netflix US - and aren't concerned about much else - Hotspot Shield is an okay option. For strong privacy and Netflix, please look elsewhere. 

    Check out our complete review of Hotspot Shield.

  2. Windscribe

    Windscribe is a well established VPN from Canada that has a good reputation. It is a great all-rounder that has servers located in over 50 countries, and it recently won the ProPrivacy Award for Best Free VPN last year in Vegas. However, if you want to access Netflix USA you will need a pro account that costs around $4 per month. If you pay you should get access to a choice of Netflix catalogs from around the world using its specialist Windflix servers.

    You can read our in-depth review of Windscribe here.

  3. Torguard

    Torguard is a VPN based in the US that has servers in over 50 countries. It is primarily aimed at people who want to BitTorrent and it keeps zero logs. It also works with Netflix US. However, it does come at a cost. On top of the premium plan, you will also need to buy a dedicated static US IP address. This makes it one of the more expensive options for accessing Netflix. However, if you love this provider - the option is there.  

    Check out our full review of Torguard here.

  4. VyprVPN

    VyprVPN is a superb VPN from Switzerland that runs on a Tier-1 network of servers owned by its parent company Golden Frog. This lets it provide fast connections that are perfect for streaming. VyprVPN will not let you access a massive cross-section of Netflix catalogs like some other VPNs, but it does work with US Netflix for the time being. However, in the past it has lost access to Netflix from time to time - which is why it isn't considered good enough to make our best 5.

    You can read our complete review of VyprVPN here.

VPN providers to avoid

Many well-known services (Avast Secureline, Kaspersky Secure Connection, Private Internet Access, IPVanish, Buffered, and TunnelBear - to name a few) don’t even try to bypass Netflix restrictions.

Below are some of the providers you can write off immediately.

ProviderReason
BufferedStopped working September 2017
BlocklessStopped working July 2016
CactusVPNStopped working July 2016
GetFlixDespite their name, they only worked for a few months
HideIPVPNStopped working July 2016
HolaAn untrustworthy service
IronSocketStopped working July 2016
IPVanishStopped working January 2017
OverplayStopped working July 2016
TunnelbearNever worked with Netflix
UnotellyStopped working July 2016

Free VPNs for Netflix

There are plenty of decent free VPNs - but they are not suitable for Netflix. Trustworthy free VPNs do not make the effort to provide servers that work with Netflix, because doing so is expensive. There are some freemium VPNs (that offer both a free and premium service) that will work with Netflix but only if you pay for the full product.

Put simply, if something sounds to good to be true - it almost always is. If a provider says that it can unlock Netflix for free - you should run a mile and don't look back.

Using a free VPN will result in Netflix’ proxy error message. 90% of paid VPNs don’t work with US Netflix; so a free Netflix VPN is definitely not going to happen. With that said, there are some cheap VPN services that are able to access Netflix and other streaming services.

Top-tip: Get ExpressVPN for Free!

ExpressVPN is one of the best services out there and you can get it for free without any restrictions.

The trick is to purchase a subscription using the button below and take advantage of their risk-free money-back-guarantee. By doing this, you can enjoy the service for up to 30-days, and when you cancel, you will receive a complete refund!

Visit ExpressVPN >>

Why Netflix restricts content by regions

Content producers and copyright holders are not in the television business to provide you with light entertainment while you eat your microwave dinner; they are there to make money. And they are acutely aware that there is more money to be made by striking deals with individual regions rather than providing global rights to one broadcaster. 

If video content has been licensed to a competing distributor or broadcaster - Netflix may not be permitted to show the content. The same is true if no distribution deal has been agreed for a specific region. No license agreement - no-show.

For example, a copyright holder may want to license its content to Sky in the UK, Foxtel in Australia, Hotstar in India, and cable TV in New Zealand. In order for these lucrative deals to work, those broadcasters expect their distribution rights to be honored.

Netflix is not the bad guy here. It would prefer to show all movies and TV shows in every country because that would make its service more appealing. This is part of the reason why Netflix continues to invest heavily in producing its own content and buying content outright. Until such time as its original catalog is enticing enough to attract customers on its own merits, Netflix will be at the mercy of its partners and foreign markets will have access to a limited library.

Is Netflix blocking VPNs? 

For a time, people all over the world could use proxy services and VPNs to easily circumvent these geo-blocks. By simply masking their IP address and replacing it with one in the US, everyone was able to gain access to the full Netflix catalog. It didn’t take long for the copyright holders to put pressure on Netflix to crack down on subscribers using VPNs.

Of course, Netflix could have chosen to simply ban all accounts found to be using a VPN. The Hollywood elite would probably have preferred this course of action.

Netflix, on the other hand, has an obligation to its shareholders and it would not make good business sense to start cutting off paying customers. Blanket banning subscribers would mean losing subscription fees - and Netflix didn’t want to bite the hand that feeds. So, instead of going after individual subscribers, Netflix blocks VPN services.

Netflix tracks down VPN IP addresses and blocks them. Netflix blacklists all IP addresses thought to belong to VPN servers. Data centers generally have a limited pool of IP addresses, which means that unless the VPN is extremely careful - it is easy to track down and block those IPs. 

Netflix blocks entire IP address ranges for data centers that host VPN servers. Although this could block non-VPN users too, it seems that Netflix has ways to ensure regular users aren’t affected. All in all, Netflix is very good at blocking VPNs, which is why few VPN providers can get around the ban.

Our recommended VPNs use clever strategies to stay ahead of the Netflix firewall.

How VPN speeds affect streaming

A VPN will always slow your internet speeds down. They work by creating an encrypted tunnel between your computer, via the internet to a server owned by the VPN provider. These additional legs in the journey take time and so you should expect a modest impact on your download speeds. When it comes to streaming services, speed is everything. If you already have slow internet speeds and suffer with a lot of buffering without using a VPN, you are probably out of luck. A VPN is only a viable tool if you can afford to sacrifice some speed.

Here are Netflix's recommended speeds for a quality streaming experience.

SpeedQuality
500 kbpsMinimum quality
1,500 kbps (1.5 Mbps)Normal quality (less than 480p)
3,000 kbps (3 Mbps)SD quality (480p or better)
5,000 kbps (5 Mbps)HD quality (720p or better)
25,000 kbps (25 Mbps)Ultra HD quality (4K)

Some providers are much faster than others. That's because they invest significant resources into their server infrastructure so that their network doesn't become overloaded or congested. When we say 'faster' all we really mean is 'less of an impact' on your raw speed. 

To find the fastest VPN, head over to our VPN speed test guide.

FAQs

Written by: Ray Walsh

Digital privacy expert with 5 years experience testing and reviewing VPNs. He's been quoted in The Express, The Times, The Washington Post, The Register, CNET & many more. Ray is currently rated #7 VPN and #8 internet privacy authority by Agilience.com.

18 Comments

  1. Robert Weir

    on January 22, 2020
    Reply

    I am using NordVPN and reside outside the USA. I have setup a US based Server, as your article suggests. When I try to get Netflix it refuses my sign up because I do not have a US Zip Code. Is there a work around for this?

    1. Douglas Crawford replied to Robert Weir

      on January 22, 2020
      Reply

      Hi Robert. You do not need to sign-up for Netflix from a US address. As long as you are using a VPN which isn't blocked by Netflix, all you need do to access the US Netflix catalog is connect to a US server before visiting Netflix. You can sign-in from an account created anywhere in the world.

  2. Someone

    on January 10, 2020
    Reply

    OpenVPN works 100%!!!!

  3. Emma Ryan

    on January 7, 2020
    Reply

    I use Purevpn German Dedicated IP. But I havent got the subscription of Netflix German. Could you please tell me how to get it. But I have subscription to the other channels of german like ZDF, ARD and its dedicated IP works fine on them.

    1. Douglas Crawford replied to Emma Ryan

      on January 7, 2020
      Reply

      Hi Emma. Netflix doesn't care where your account is registered. If you have an account for Netflix (from anywhere) and change your IP to a German IP address (assuming you use a service which not blocked by Netflix) then you will see the German Netflix catalog when you login to the service.

  4. Emily Walsh

    on September 24, 2019
    Reply

    Can I watch the West Wing from the UK? Someone told me the US version has this show.

    1. Jo O'Reilly replied to Emily Walsh

      on September 24, 2019
      Reply

      Emily, this is definitely possible.

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