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Best VPN for California in 2024: Access Geo-Restricted Content

In the dynamic realm of the internet, Californian users need a VPN that stands as a stalwart guardian against cyber threats while facilitating unrestricted access to the online world. With hundreds of choices available, selecting the best VPN for California is not easy, but it is paramount. Hopefully, this article can help.

 

Being unable to access Californian websites or stream your favorite local shows when overseas can be really frustrating. Likewise, people come across numerous restrictions and dangers online, even when staying in a country seemingly free, like the USA.  

The good news? A Virtual Private Network (VPN) enables you to bypass these restrictions swiftly and effortlessly, enjoying a much broader spectrum of content and enhanced privacy. 

Our thorough research and testing helped us to shortlist the best VPNs for California, to empower you with unrivaled access to geo-restricted content and top-notch online security. So, let's dig into it.

What is the best VPN for California?

Without further ado, here are the top seven VPNs for California. We've handpicked these VPN providers for you by taking into consideration the most important factors, such as security, privacy, and performance, across a wide range of websites and online services.

  1. ExpressVPN - The best California VPN. An all-around VPN solution with servers in California and worldwide. Offers blazing speeds and a 30-day money-back guarantee.
  2. TIP

    In our testing we checked that all ExpressVPN plans work for Netflix. The one year plan is the best value: three months free and a 30 day risk-free trial.

  3. Surfshark - The best multi-device VPN for California. It comes with unlimited simultaneous connections and sleek apps for all devices, including Linux – plus, it's cheap.
  4. NordVPN - The best buy California VPN. You get plenty of US servers, including LA and San Francisco, chart-topping speeds, and customizable apps for all OS.
  5. CyberGhost VPN - A beginner-friendly VPN for California with a vast international server network. It comes with lots of features and a generous 45-day money-back guarantee.
  6. IPVanish - A US-based VPN with unlimited simultaneous connections, and a great choice for California users. Servers optimized for streaming all over the States.

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Transparent terms—contact the support team within 30 days for a hassle-free refund if you're not satisfied. Click here to start your ExpressVPN trial

TEST WINNER ExpressVPN Surfshark NordVPN CyberGhost VPN IPVanish
Website ExpressVPN Surfshark NordVPN CyberGhost VPN IPVanish
Ranking for California 1 2 3 4 5
Performance 10
9
9
7
7
Reliability 9
8
8
7
7
Free trial
Total servers 3000
3200
6200
11625
2000
Payment PayPal
Visa/MasterCard
Amex
Cryptocurrency
PayPal
Visa/MasterCard
Amex
Cryptocurrency
PayPal
Visa/MasterCard
Amex
Cryptocurrency
PayPal
Visa/MasterCard
Amex
Cryptocurrency
PayPal
Visa/MasterCard
Amex
Cryptocurrency
Unblocks: Netflix
iPlayer
Disney+
Amazon Prime
Hulu
Netflix
iPlayer
Disney+
Amazon Prime
Hulu
Netflix
iPlayer
Disney+
Amazon Prime
Hulu
Netflix
iPlayer
Disney+
Amazon Prime
Hulu
Netflix
iPlayer
Disney+
Amazon Prime
Hulu
Supported platforms Windows
macOS
iOS
Android
Windows
macOS
iOS
Android
Windows
macOS
iOS
Android
Windows
macOS
iOS
Android
Windows
macOS
iOS
Android

The best VPNs for California – in more detail

Here are other important features and information about the VPNs above. I did my best to choose the one most relevant to Californian users:

1. ExpressVPN
Editor's Choice | June 2024

ExpressVPN is the best VPN for California. You get super-fast servers in LA, San Francisco, Santa Monica, and all over the US and worldwide. Premium security features, simultaneous connections, and a 30-day money-back guarantee are all included.

  • Pricing

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

    • Servers all over the US and worldwide
    • Super fast for seamless streaming
    • Independently audited zero-logs policy
    • Industry-leading features
    • Eight simultaneous connections
  • Cons

    • Lacks port forwarding
    • Some find it expensive
  • Available on

    • Windows
    • macOS
    • iOS
    • Android
    • Linux
  • Unblocks

    • Netflix
    • iPlayer
    • Amazon Prime
    • Hulu
  • Website

ExpressVPN Demo

ExpressVPN Demo ExpressVPN Demo


ExpressVPN is a renowned VPN based in the British Virgin Islands, away from intrusive jurisdictions and prying agencies. It's our #1 recommended VPN for California due to several key reasons. For a start, this VPN boasts a vast network of servers spread over [post-object type="single-property" provider="expressvpn" property-id="449" /]] across the globe, including Californian cities, LA, San Francisco, and Santa Monica. Such an abundance of servers and IP addresses ensures fast and reliable connections for users in California, allowing them to bypass geo-restrictions and access content from around the world with ease.


ExpressVPN provides exceptional speeds and reliable performance, making it ideal for streaming, gaming, and other bandwidth-intensive activities. During my extensive testing of ExpressVPN, I experienced seamless HD streaming on major entertainment platforms, including Netflix US, and fast downloads without slowdowns or buffering issues.


The VPN prioritizes user privacy and security with robust AES-256 bit encryption and industry-leading VPN protocols, like OpenVPN and Lightway, which enable you to customize the level of speed and security of your VPN. Additionally, ExpressVPN operates under a strict no-logs policy – inspected through independent audits on multiple occasions. These audits by PwC give users peace of mind by confirming that their data remains private and secure at all times. 


Finally, ExpressVPN's intuitive interface makes it easy for users in California to connect to servers, switch locations, and customize their VPN settings with just a few clicks. Its user-friendly apps are available for all your devices, including Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, and even various routers and consoles. Linux users get a command-line interface though, so if you're in search of a GUI for your Linux device, check some of our recommended VPNs below. 


Whether you need help setting up the VPN on your device or troubleshooting connectivity issues, ExpressVPN's knowledgeable support team is available 24/7 to assist you. Overall, ExpressVPN's combination of speed, security, and performance makes it the best VPN choice for users in California. But don't take my word for it – try ExpressVPN on up to eight devices simultaneously with a risk-free 30-day money-back guarantee.

Surfshark is a customizable and budget-friendly VPN for Californian users. You can use its cutting-edge features on all your devices simultaneously.

  • Pricing

    • 24 months + 3 months FREE: $2.19/mth
      86% OFF
    • 12 months + 3 months FREE: $2.79/mth
      82% OFF
    • 1 month: $15.45/mth
  • Pros

    • Advanced GUI app for Linux
    • Cutting-edge Nexus features
    • MultiHop feature
    • Unlimited simultaneous connections
  • Cons

    • One-month subscription is quite pricey
    • OpenVPN speeds are not the fastest
  • Available on

    • Windows
    • macOS
    • iOS
    • Android
    • Linux
  • Unblocks

    • Netflix
    • iPlayer
    • Amazon Prime
    • Hulu
  • Website

Surfshark Demo

Surfshark Demo Surfshark Demo


Surfshark is a stellar choice for users in California, thanks to its cutting-edge features carefully tailored to enhance users' online privacy and security – while providing unparalleled accessibility to a wide range of websites and services. Some of its top features for Californian users include:



  • MultiHop feature – Also known as double VPN, it routes users' internet traffic through multiple VPN servers in different locations, providing an additional layer of encryption. This advanced functionality enhances your online privacy and security by making it even more difficult for third parties, such as numerous US spying agencies, to track your online activities or trace your IP address back to your physical location. MultiHop is ideal for users in California who prioritize maximum privacy while browsing the internet.

  • Camouflage mode – Disguises VPN traffic to appear as regular HTTPS traffic, making it more challenging for internet service providers (ISPs), network administrators, and government agencies to detect and block VPN usage. This feature is especially valuable for users from California who travel a lot and may encounter geo-blocks or restrictions on VPN usage in countries with strict censorship, such as Egypt or the UAE.

  • Kill-switch – Provides an extra layer of security by automatically disconnecting your internet connection if the VPN connection drops unexpectedly. This prevents data leaks and ensures that your online activities remain protected, even in the event of VPN connection interruptions. The kill-switch feature is particularly useful for Californian users when accessing sensitive information or using public WiFi networks. 


Another of Surfshark's standout advantages is its extensive server network, which includes over 3,200 servers in more than 100 countries worldwide. With one of the fastest-growing VPN networks, Surfshark provides multiple server locations in California and across the US, including Los Angeles, San Jose, and San Francisco. The outstanding local and international coverage means you'll never run out of online content, regardless if you’re staying in California or traveling abroad.


Surfshark offers slick, easy-to-use apps for various devices and platforms, including Windows, macOS, iOS, Android, and an outstanding GUI app for Linux. Additionally, Surfshark allows users to connect an unlimited number of devices simultaneously with a single subscription, making it an ideal choice for large households and tech-savvy individuals. Try Surfshark, with its 30-day money-back guarantee and compare it head-to-head to other top-performing VPNs from this article – you won't be disappointed.

NordVPN offers top-notch California connections at affordable prices. It's consistently among the fastest VPNs and works with all popular streaming platforms.

  • Pricing

    • 24 months + 3 months FREE: $3.69/mth
      70% OFF
    • 12 months: $4.99/mth
      59% OFF
    • 1 month: $11.99/mth
  • Pros

    • Cutting-edge customizations
    • Audited zero-logs policy
    • Interactive server map
    • Great speeds
  • Cons

    • No GUI for Linux, command line only
    • No free trial
  • Available on

    • Windows
    • macOS
    • iOS
    • Android
    • Linux
  • Unblocks

    • Netflix
    • iPlayer
    • Amazon Prime
    • Hulu
  • Website

Nord Demo

Nord Demo Nord Demo


NordVPN is another world-famous VPN brand that ensures excellent and trustworthy VPN protection. It originates from Panama but provides worldwide coverage. Although its server network is slightly smaller than that of ExpressVPN, NordVPN offers servers in key locations, including multiple servers in California and neighboring states. This provides access to fast and reliable connections in California and worldwide, allowing users to bypass geo-restrictions and access content from different locations with ease.


NordVPN is great for your privacy, thanks to its military-grade AES-256 encryption. The service also comes with advanced VPN protocols, including OpenVPN, IKEv2/IPsec, and its proprietary NordLynx protocol, plus a long list of other top-notch features. Double VPN, split tunneling, and obfuscation (stealth servers) are just some of those. Additionally, NordVPN operates under a strict zero-logs policy, meaning this VPN never stores user data. This ensures added privacy and security for users in California – proven through independent audits.


The VPN stands out as one of the best VPNs for California thanks to its user-friendly interface and wide device compatibility. It offers easy-to-use apps for various platforms, including Windows, macOS, iOS, Android, and Linux (command-line only), allowing users to protect their online activities across multiple devices in just a few clicks. NordVPN's intuitive interface, along with its interactive server map, makes it simple for users in California to connect to servers, switch locations, and customize their VPN experience according to their preferences.


A 30-day money-back guarantee is also included, so you can test the service risk-free in your own time before committing.

CyberGhost is a user-friendly California VPN, suitable for VPN newbies. You get plenty of servers worldwide, friendly customer support, and a 45-day money-back guarantee.

  • Pricing

    • 24 months + 3 months FREE: $2.11/mth
      83% OFF
    • 6 months: $6.99/mth
      42% OFF
    • 1 month: $11.99/mth
  • Pros

    • Over a thousand US servers
    • Easy to use and affordable
    • Free trial available
  • Cons

    • Could be faster
    • Lacks MultiHop
    • No obfuscation (stealth servers)
  • Available on

    • Windows
    • macOS
    • iOS
    • Android
    • Linux
  • Unblocks

    • Netflix
    • iPlayer
    • Amazon Prime
    • Hulu
  • Website

CyberGhost Demo

CyberGhost Demo CyberGhost Demo


CyberGhost is a sought-after VPN from Romania that's very protective when it comes to user privacy. What sets CyberGhost apart is its commitment to user satisfaction, offering not only a generous 45-day money-back guarantee but also free trial options – a benefit that has made it a preferred choice among most VPN newcomers. They get a chance to explore its features entirely free of charge on Android and there's an even more generous seven-day trial for iOS. 


CyberGhost is a high-performing and secure VPN that employs AES 256-bit encryption, multiple protocols including OpenVPN, and protection against DNS and IP leaks. It operates as a no-logs provider, benefiting from Romania's privacy-friendly laws. ​​CyberGhost recently underwent an independent audit by a renowned global firm Deloitte, reinstating its commitment to its strict no-logs policy. 


Its versatility extends across popular platforms with eye-pleasing apps available for all devices, allowing up to seven simultaneous connections even on a free trial account. The service works great with streaming sites like Netflix, BBC iPlayer, and Amazon Prime, thanks to its servers optimized for streaming. Users can also rely on CyberGhost's expert customer service, available 24/7 via live chat or email in four languages. All in all, it's a great service for users in California, definitely worth giving it a try – especially since you can try it for free.

IPVanish is an all-around multi-device choice for users in California and abroad. Recently audited and provides servers dotted across the US.

  • Pricing

    • 24 months: $3.33/mth
      75% OFF
    • 12 months: $3.99/mth
      70% OFF
    • 1 month: $12.99/mth
  • Pros

    • Proprietary server network and features
    • Works with Netflix, ESPN+, and more
    • Servers in over 20 US cities
  • Cons

    • Not as fast as ExpressVPN or Surfshark
    • Lacks some advanced features
    • Fewer servers in the US than PIA
  • Available on

    • Windows
    • macOS
    • iOS
    • Android
    • Linux
  • Unblocks

    • Netflix
    • Amazon Prime
    • Hulu
  • Website

IPVanish Demo

IPVanish Demo IPVanish Demo


IPVanish secures a prominent place among VPN providers, especially for Californian users seeking straightforward yet robust privacy solutions. Carefully designed for all your devices, IPVanish apps come with an intuitive interface and impressive functionalities. 


The service's extensive server network spanning 75 locations, ensures Californian users can effortlessly pick fast connections for streaming, gaming, video calls, and more. Despite its US jurisdiction, IPVanish reassures its users with an audited no-logs policy, ensuring their data remains safeguarded from potential privacy breaches. 


If you choose IPVanish, you will benefit from military-grade 256-bit AES encryption and the advanced Perfect Forward Secrecy feature, which ensures that your past and future online sessions remain secure, even if your current one gets compromised somehow. With recent network upgrades, including 25 GB network capacity cards, IPVanish guarantees optimized connection speeds, delivering smooth online experiences regardless of your online activities. The VPN's "Always On" feature and API Load Balancing further enhance your VPN connectivity, making it a preferred choice for Californians prioritizing ease of use in a VPN.  


Try IPVanish with a single subscription, which comes with unlimited simultaneous connections and a 30-day money-back guarantee.

VPN testing methodology – How we picked the best Californian VPNs

ProPrivacy's VPN testing methodology is carefully designed to identify the best VPN providers for various users. Our team regularly checks each VPN's encryption protocols, logging policies, and leak protection mechanisms to ensure the highest level of privacy and security for users in California and worldwide.

The specific process of selecting the best VPNs for California begins with extensive research of the leading VPNs, considering factors such as server locations (in California and worldwide), speed, security features, privacy policies, customer support services, and more. 

To select the best Californian VPNs, I personally subjected each provider to rigorous testing in real-world scenarios. This involved evaluating their performance in bypassing geo-restrictions, streaming capabilities, and overall reliability while connected to servers located in, or near, California. I also evaluated the user experience for each provider, including ease of use, customer support quality, and compatibility with different devices and platforms. 

Finally, I checked the affordability and value offered by each VPN provider, weighing subscription costs against the features and benefits provided to California users. We aim to provide California users with unbiased recommendations for the best VPNs that cater to their specific needs and preferences. However, the final choice is always yours.   

How to use a VPN in California?

Although an advanced software solution, a VPN is actually very easy to set up. Follow our simplified guide and enjoy secure connections in California in no time.

How to use a VPN in California in three easy steps:

  1. Choose a VPN with servers in California, or nearby states. While ExpressVPN is our top recommendation for its performance and security, explore other reputable VPN providers to find one that suits your own specific preferences.
  2. Download the VPN app onto your device and follow the installation prompts. For additional customization options, refer to the guides on the VPN provider's website.
  3. Launch the VPN and select a server in California. With one click, your virtual location will transition to California, providing you with access to local websites and services.

By following these three steps, you can use a VPN in California to enhance your online privacy and access geo-restricted content with ease.

Can I use a free VPN for California?

Using a free VPN for California may seem like a legitimate option, especially for users looking to save money while still benefiting from online privacy and security. However, it's very important to consider all the limitations and risks associated with free VPN services.

First and foremost, most free VPNs come with slower connection speeds, data caps, limited server options, and weak geo-spoofing capabilities. Premium features, of course, are out of the question too. As a result, users may experience frustration and inconvenience when trying to stream content, download large files, or engage in bandwidth-intensive activities while using a free VPN in California.

What's even more worrisome, free VPN services may compromise user privacy and security in exchange for their no-cost offerings. Many free VPN providers have become infamous for collecting and selling user data to third parties for advertising or other purposes. Additionally, free VPNs rarely offer robust encryption protocols and leak protection mechanisms – potentially exposing your sensitive information to various threat actors out there.

In conclusion, while free VPNs may be a little better for your budget, they are often much worse for your privacy and security. Considering that some of the most reputable services on the market now come with budget-friendly long-term VPN plans (often costing a little over $2 a month), we truly believe free VPNs are not worth it.

Best VPN for California FAQs

Conclusion

With a plethora of options available, including industry leaders like ExpressVPN, NordVPN, and Surfshark, California users have plenty of options to choose from for a VPN service tailored to their unique needs and preferences. 

All recommended VPNs in this article offer robust encryption protocols, strict no-logs policies, and a wide range of server locations, including servers in California and nearby regions. With fast speeds and reliable connections, users can seamlessly access any geo-restricted content, enhance their online privacy, and protect their internet connection from potential threats.

So, let's remind ourselves once again what are the top California VPN options:

From $6.67/month

The best California VPN. An all-around VPN solution with servers in California and worldwide. Offers blazing speeds and a 30-day money-back guarantee.

ProPrivacy TrustScore:
10 out of 10
Simultaneous connections
8
Server locations
160
Free trial
No

From $2.19/month

The best multi-device VPN for California. It comes with unlimited simultaneous connections and sleek apps for all devices, including Linux – plus, it's cheap.

ProPrivacy TrustScore:
9.9 out of 10
Simultaneous connections
Unlimited
Server locations
140
Free trial
Yes

From $3.69/month

The best buy California VPN. You get plenty of US servers, including LA and San Francisco, chart-topping speeds, and customizable apps for all OS.

ProPrivacy TrustScore:
9.8 out of 10
Simultaneous connections
10
Free trial
No
Server locations
135

From $2.11/month

A beginner-friendly VPN for California with a vast international server network. It comes with lots of features and a generous 45-day money-back guarantee.

ProPrivacy TrustScore:
9.7 out of 10
Simultaneous connections
7
Free trial
Yes
Server locations
126

From $3.33/month

A US-based VPN with unlimited simultaneous connections, and a great choice for California users. Servers optimized for streaming all over the States.

ProPrivacy TrustScore:
9.6 out of 10
Simultaneous connections
Unlimited
Server locations
75
Free trial
No

Written by: Danka Delić

With her BA in English Language and Literature, Private Pilot Licence, and passion for researching and writing, Danka brings further diversity to the team. As a former world traveler, she learned to appreciate cyber security and the necessity for digital privacy. Danka is a nature, animal, and written-word lover. She enjoys staying on the go, both mentally and physically, and spends most of her free time either reading or hiking with her dog.

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