Top 3 VPNs
The use of a Virtual Private Network can provide a dramatic increase in online privacy and Internet security. VPNs, which allow a user to connect to a remote server in order to hide their IP address, keep Internet activity both encrypted and anonymous.
An additional benefit of connecting to the Internet through a remote IP address is the ability to bypass regional restrictions of online content. On the other hand, a downside of using a VPN is that many sites or online services are able to detect the use of a proxy server and block access accordingly. For users trying to connect to Netflix, both of these are relevant factors in VPN usage.
While use of a VPN can allow users to access Netflix without regard to regional restrictions, and with absolute privacy, Netflix can often detect use of a proxy server and block access accordingly. Fortunately, many VPNs on the market have the technology in place to jump these hurdles and allow Netflix use during a VPN connection. If you plan on using Netflix on a regular basis, this will narrow down your choice of VPN; there are still other factors to consider, which we will delve into to help you pick the best option.
Using a Virtual Private Network will have an impact on your connectivity, latency, and overall performance. As well as innate differences between VPN connection speeds, users will be impacted differently based on proximity to the server. Based on speed tests, VPN use can cause of performance loss anywhere from 5% to 40%, or even more. This makes performance an important metric when evaluating different options.
Additionally, different VPNs have a variety of privacy and security measures. All of them will have robust encryption that is typically good enough for casual use, but some will provide additional protections or security protocols for added safety. In regards to privacy, some VPNs will keep minimal user logs, while others will keep none at all. And based on the country of operation, there may be government agencies that can occasionally pry into VPN data and logs.
Different VPN products may also include some extra features like multiple-device support, a high level of configuration for the power user, and live customer support. And, although VPNs are generally affordable, the most expensive VPNs are about twice the cost of the budget options; because of this, it is important to look at the different subscription plans and how much they will cost.
I reviewed some of the best VPNs that do not restrict access to Netflix, while keeping in mind all of the usual criteria for evaluating VPNs. Since a lot of great products will allow Netflix access, they can be compared based on performance, privacy and security, user friendliness, and special features.
Choosing the Right VPN
With so many available options, it can be difficult to narrow down VPN providers to find the best fit for you budget and needs. If you would like to use Netflix anonymously and securely, then it is important to make sure to select a VPN that will not impede your access to the streaming service. The VPNs on this list are all Netflix-compatible, and include some of the most trusted and best-performing VPNs currently available – depending on your personal preferences, any one of them would be a great choice to provide secure Netflix access.
Express VPN is a Virgin Islands-based service that has been operating since 2009. During this time, the company has built a reputation for consistency and a dedication to user privacy. While it is one of the most expensive VPNs on the market today, ExpressVPN provides a secure and robust VPN service, packaged in an easy-to-use and attractive client.
With servers in over 90 countries, ExpressVPN is among the best option for optimizing connectivity no matter where you are. For the Netflix user, this also confers the ability to connect to Netflix through IP addresses in several different regions, allowing access to a wider variety of content.
Although it does not have the depth of features and configurations as some other VPNs, Express is perfect for the user who doesn’t mind paying a little extra for a well-rounded VPN with worldwide access and great usability.
- Well-rounded VPN, above average in performance and privacy
- 30-day money-back guarantee allows full access and is easy to cancel
- Over 1,000 servers worldwide assures reliable connection at all times
- Has been consistently able to access Netflix since 2009
- One of the most expensive VPNs, even on a yearly plan
- Limited configuration options for the price point
NordVPN is a reputable market leader, with budget-friendly plans and servers in over 60 countries. NordVPN users get access to lots of deeper features, like different encryption protocols, a kill switch, and more. Additionally, the company is based in Panama, which is great for privacy.
NodVPN also has an easy installation and great interface, making it a user-friendly option for someone that just wants to turn on a VPN and start streaming with minimal hassle. That being said, NordVPN’s customer service has received mixed reviews, so users looking to get into more advanced features should feel confident in troubleshooting for themselves.
With the current available discounts, NordVPN can give you a premier VPN experience for less than $4/month for a 2-year plan. This makes it one of the most affordable options for using Netflix with maximum protection.
- Very affordable, especially with a longer commitment
- Servers in over 60 countries
- Great reputation for privacy – no user logs and no local government regulations get in the way
- Up to six simultaneous connections
- Mixed results on performance – generally consistent, but slower than other options
- Customer support is mediocre
VPNArea is known for its multi-platform integration, allowing users to access Netflix from different devices. It also has an easy and appealing UI, and very responsive customer support.
While not the fastest VPN, Netflix users will find performance to be more than adequate for streaming. Additionally, VPNArea has all of the best security features and total privacy with a no-log system. The fact that company’s headquarters are in Bulgaria adds an extra layer of comfort due to the country’s privacy-friendly legal system.
VPNArea has servers in over 60 countries, and a 7-day free trial to help you get a feel for it. Overall, it is a user-friendly service with great privacy controls. While not as robust or feature-laden as some of the more expensive services, it is great for the casual VPN user.
- Live customer support and ticket system available 24/7
- Support across multiple devices and easy mobile setup
- Top tier privacy and security
- Middle of the road speed
- Performance and connectivity can vary based on region (the 7-day free trial may help you decide)
- Less configuration options than the bigger VPNs
Buffered is a newer player on the VPN scene, and its strengths play well to the Netflix user. On top of their secure and high-speed network, they already have servers in almost 40 countries, support 5 simultaneous devices, and have a responsive customer service system.
In exchange, the user gets custom clients for different operating systems and great configuration guides for mobile devices. This can allow streaming from varied devices, including SmartTV’s – a great boon for the Netflix user. This places Buffered as more of a niche product for customers who want to get a lot of mileage out of deeper VPN features, but would like to do so with the aid of tutorial videos and documentation.
- Total package of speed and OpenVPN security
- Compatibility with Windows, Mac, and Linux – plus smart TVs and mobile
- Although customer service is not live chat, still very responsive and helpful
- One of the most expensive VPNs
- Minimal logs are kept (login times and connection durations)
PureVPN has been a highly regarded VPN product for over a decade, and should be of particular interest to the Internet user looking for easy and protected access to Netflix. Not only does PureVPN provide great performance, features, and encryption protocols, their 80,000 IP addresses in 141 countries gives users the best available options for bypassing geo-restrictions.
PureVPN is also a very flexible product, having an easy installation and simple interface for the hassle-free user, while also providing deeper configuration options. It’s robust set of options can deliver a great experience for any user. With access to almost every security protocol, compatibility with several devices and every major OS, and many customer support channels – tickets, live chat, forums, and email – PureVPN is one of the most in-depth VPNs with access to virtually every feature on the market.
- Robust set of features and security protocols
- Total package of performance and usability
- Support for virtually any type of device
- Expensive monthly plan (though longer subscriptions offer steep discounts)
- Despite great interface, setup and initial configuration is not as fast or easy as other options
TorGuard is United States-based VPN provider that performs extremely well on speed tests (especially for those connecting in the US), and has great security features as well. The downside of having headquarters in the States is some concerns over privacy, as local regulations require some logging of data.
This promise of high performance may be of interest to the Netflix user, assuring minimal buffering and great stream quality. Torguard is not without compromise as a VPN,
- Excellent connection speed
- Up to 5 simultaneous devices
- Locations in over 50 countries for bypassing geo-restrictions
- Expensive ($9.99/month)
Vypr is a well-rounded VPN that is especially notable for its privacy and security. The company is based in Switzerland, which has very privacy-friendly regulations. On top of this, Vypr boasts great security features, allowing use of different encryption protocols, including the proprietary Chameleon system that further masks user data.
While some users report latency issues and higher ping with this service, VyprVPN performs well on download tests, making it great for streaming things like Netflix. It also has a sleek client that is supported across different operating systems and mobile devices. Although Vypr is a little more expensive than other VPNs, it provides a well-rounded VPN product with great ease-of-use.
- One of the fastest VPNs for high-performance needs
- Excellent encryption and very secure
- Easy to install and easy to use
- Premium plan allows 5 simultaneous devices
- Premium service is $6.66/month billed annually, above average for VPNs
- Although Vypr does not keep activity logs, connection logs are kept for 30 days