The best streaming VPN in 2024

More and more people are turning to the best streaming VPNs to keep up with their favorite shows—and why wouldn't they? International copyright and licensing restrictions dictate who can watch which content, and they're always changing. It's a recipe for frustration, especially if the movie you're dying to see just isn't available in your country.

That's where a VPN comes in handy. Virtual private networks (VPNs) can spoof your location and trick the sites and streaming platforms you visit into thinking you're somewhere else in the world. Not all VPNs are up to the task, however, which is why the TechRadar team spends more than 3,000 hours a year testing providers (which includes 2,200 stream unblocking tests and 28,000 speed tests).

Keep reading, and I'll put the best VPNs head to head, comparing their unblocking power, speed, and overall value for money.

The three best streaming VPNs in 2024

1. The best VPN overall: NordVPN

1. The best VPN overall: NordVPN
NordVPN is a streaming powerhouse capable of unblocking pretty much every platform out there. So, whether you want to check out Netflix, Amazon Prime, BBC iPlayer, Hulu, or DAZN (to name a few), it has you covered. 

Check out NordVPN's unblocking power for just $1.49 a month. You can even do so without risking a penny, thanks to its 30-day money-back guarantee.

2. The best for beginners: ExpressVPN

2. The best for beginners: ExpressVPN
There are ExpressVPN servers scattered across 105 countries, so you'll have easy access to content from all over the world. Plus, the provider lives up to its name with seriously impressive speeds ideal for HD movie marathons.

Admittedly, ExpressVPN is more pricey than its closest competition, but you're getting a high-quality product in return. If you're on the fence, take ExpressVPN for a test drive with its 30-day money-back guarantee.

3. The best budget option: Surfshark

3. The best budget option: Surfshark
If you're hunting for a bargain, Surfshark delivers teeny tiny prices and huge value for money. You'll get the best speeds on the market, servers around the globe, and access to all of your favorite streaming services.

Surfshark lacks some advanced tools, particularly compared to NordVPN and ExpressVPN, but you'll be covered by a 30-day money-back guarantee you can use to take the provider for a spin before committing to a long-term plan.

Recent updates

There's been a seismic shift in our overall VPN rankings with NordVPN claiming the top spot over ExpressVPN. NordVPN remains the best option for streaming, too, thanks to its awesome unblocking power and reliable speed. Want to check out the data? Head on over to our latest VPN test results.

The 5 best streaming VPNs in 2024

Why you can trust TechRadar We spend hours testing every product or service we review, so you can be sure you’re buying the best. Find out more about how we test.

The best VPN for streaming

NordVPN streaming VPN working on multiple different devicesTechRadar Editor's Choice award logo

(Image credit: Future)

1. NordVPN

Unblock content from around the world in HD and 4K

Streaming services unblocked: Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, BBC iPlayer, Disney Plus, Sling TV, HBO, DAZN | Compatible devices: Amazon Fire TV, Chromecast, Apple TV, Roku, PlayStation, Xbox | Server locations: 50+ | Maximum devices supported: 6 | 24/7 live chat support: Yes

Unblocks a long list of streaming platforms
The fastest VPN I've tested
Built-in ad-blocking tools
24/7 live chat support
UI feels cramped on mobile devices
Fewer server locations than ExpressVPN and Surfshark
Subscribe if:

✔️ Streaming Netflix is your primary use case: NordVPN sits at the top of our Netflix VPN rankings, and can unblock international content libraries with ease.

✔️ You want an all-in-one security suite: a NordVPN subscription comes with ad-blocking tools, malware protection, and other handy privacy features.

✔️ You want excellent value for money: NordVPN's customizable pricing plans mean that you only pay for what you need (and what you'll use).

Don't subscribe if:

❌ You want a super simple interface: NordVPN's map-style interface can be a lot of fun, but if you want a simpler design without the bells and whistles, Surfshark has cleaner apps.

You want to access content everywhere: with servers in 609 countries, you get a lot of options, but compared to ExpressVPN, NordVPN is more limited in countries and locations. 

Bottom line: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

🔒 NordVPN is the ultimate all-rounder: it's wickedly quick, unblocks virtually any site you point it at, and doesn't cost a fortune. Check it out today with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Want to know more?

Visit our in-depth NordVPN review for a closer look at this all-in-one security solution. 

NordVPN's specific focus on streaming is evident through its SmartPlay technology, a secure proxy service that the provider uses to bypass the geo-restrictions of streaming websites. The feature is enabled in all NordVPN apps by default, automatically rerouting user requests through an appropriate remote server.

You'll have no problem unblocking the likes of BBC iPlayer, Prime Video, Hulu, and YouTube. NordVPN has even upped its Netflix game in recent months and can access catalogs US, UK, Canada, Australia, and Japan. Basically, NordVPN has everything you need to check out streaming content from all over the globe—including absolutely ridiculous speeds. In fact, during my most recent tests, the service clocked in at 950 Mbps (using the NordLynx protocol), which is way more than you need to ensure smooth, buffer-free, streams.

Try NordVPN with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

There are more than 6,000 NordVPN servers in 61 countries worldwide—which is a lot. Hopping from location to location is nice and easy, thanks to NordVPN's well-organized server lists, so you can quickly relocate yourself to bypass any pesky geo-restrictions you encounter. There are several specialty servers to choose from, too, including dedicated P2P servers, obfuscated (cloaked) servers, and Onion Over VPN.

NordVPN's security features are just as intuitive. The kill switch is particularly handy, seeing as it'll cut your internet connection if the VPN drops and prevent data leaks, and an independently-audited no-logs policy means that you can go about your browsing, streaming, and downloading without worrying about nosy third parties looking over your shoulder. Oh, and NordVPN also has extra add-ons like dedicated IP addresses and a dedicated Apple TV VPN app.

NordVPN provides 24/7 live chat support as well as a range of explainer guides and support articles to help you access the show or event you want to watch as smoothly as possible. In addition, its subscription plans offer even more tools and apps for a slightly higher monthly fee, including a data breach scanner, personal data removal, cross-platform password manager, and 1 TB of cloud storage. See how it stacks up against ExpressVPN with a 30-day money-back guarantee to fall back on.

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NordVPN test results:
AttributesNotesRating
DesignDesign can be a little busy for some people, ⭐⭐⭐⭐
Ease of useThere isn't much attention to detail and is not the best option when streaming on mobile⭐⭐⭐
PerformanceOne of our fastest VPNs⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
UnblockingPerfect for Netflix and other streaming services⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Security and privacyAn excellent all-in-one security solution⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Customer support24/7 available, friendly, and professional⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
PriceFantastic value for the money⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

The best beginner VPN

ExpressVPN working on several devices including Apple TVTechRadar Editor's Choice award logo

(Image credit: ExpressVPN)

2. ExpressVPN

Top contender holds all the keys to streaming around the globe

Streaming services unblocked: Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, BBC iPlayer, Disney Plus, Sling TV, HBO, DAZN, Kayo, Peacock | Compatible devices: Amazon Fire TV, Chromecast, Apple TV, Roku, PlayStation, Xbox | Server locations: 160 | Maximum devices supported: 8 | 24/7 live chat support: Yes

Unlocks most major streaming services
Quality mobile clients
Consistently fast performance
Wide range of servers and locations
A bit expensive
Only 8 devices supported 
Subscribe if:

✔️ You want easy-to-use top-quality apps for almost everything: ExpressVPN's apps are simple and compatible with almost all devices

✔️ You want to access content everywhere: with over 160 locations worldwide to choose from, you'll be able to access local content no matter where you are.

✔️ You need a reliable and trustworthy VPN: between ExpressVPN's regular audits and no-logs policy, you can be certain your information is always safe. 

Don't subscribe if:

You're on a strict budget: ExpressVPN is an expensive choice. If you can't afford its prices, we'd recommend looking towards NordVPN or Surfshark.

You need a full security suite: ExpressVPN primarily focuses on its VPN service. If you need an all-in-one solution with built-in antivirus capabilities, ExpressVPN may not be the right pick for you. 

Bottom line: ⭐⭐⭐⭐½

🔒 ExpressVPN strikes a great balance between security, usability, performance, and unblocking capability, all while offering exceptional customization. Try for yourself with a 30-day money-back guarantee. 

Want to know more?

Check out our in-depth ExpressVPN review for a closer look at the service and its roster of security tools.

ExpressVPN unblocks all popular TV streaming services globally and provides a consistent service that rarely leaves you unable to access your favorite streaming platforms. In our last round of testing, ExpressVPN effortlessly unblocked several international Netflix catalogs, Amazon Prime Video, Disney Plus, BBC iPlayer, and other popular streaming services.

It offers a wide range of native clients, including those for Windows, Mac, Linux, and other devices, but the service truly shines in the mobile department. ExpressVPN has intuitive and well-designed iOS and Android apps that let you automatically establish a connection with the closest optimized server and reach high speeds. Besides its traditional VPN apps, ExpressVPN has its own SmartDNS tool, MediaStreamer, that helps you access the geo-restricted content on devices like Smart TVs by spoofing your location.

Try ExpressVPN with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

With its split tunneling feature, you can specify which apps are and aren't protected by the VPN, which means both access local sites and services and stream your favorite content simultaneously. 

ExpressVPN boasts a 3,200 server count spread across 160 locations in 105 countries. The service achieved consistently solid speeds in our latest series of tests, averaging 750 Mbps. That's enough coverage to stream content anywhere in the world, and it's fast enough to simultaneously stream over a dozen TV shows or movies in 4K.

The provider recently upped its simultaneous connection count from five to eight. With most people only using it on four devices at any one time, this means both you and other members of your household can reap the benefits. This being said, other providers like Surfshark allow you to have unlimited simultaneous connections.

As well as its limited number of simultaneous connections, ExpressVPN also comes at a higher price than most of its competition, including NordVPN, which has a whole host of security tools at a lower cost.

ExpressVPN justifies its price by offering unparalleled customer support that can provide expert advice 24/7 and resolve any issues you may have. If that's not enough, it also throws in 3 months of additional protection, a password manager, and a year of unlimited cloud storage, all for free on its 12-month plan. Don't just take our word for it, though. Put it to the test with a risk-free 30-day money-back guarantee.

ExpressVPN streaming page showing the services it can access

(Image credit: ExpressVPN)
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ExpressVPN test results:
AttributesNotesRating
DesignA clean and simple design on all your devices ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Ease of useEasy-to-navigate apps with auto-connect functionality⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
PerformanceFast enough for anything you could throw at it, but slower than NordVPN and Surfshark⭐⭐⭐⭐
UnblockingEffortlessly gives you access to content around the world⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Security and privacyExpress offers highly secure protocols and military-grade protection ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Customer support24/7 available and helpful support⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
PriceMore expensive choice compared to the competition⭐⭐⭐

The best cheap streaming VPN

Surfshark streaming vpn

(Image credit: Future)

3. Surfshark

Proficient unblocking for a fraction of the price

Streaming services unblocked: Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, BBC iPlayer, Disney Plus, HBO, DAZN | Compatible devices: Chromecast, Apple TV, PlayStation, Xbox | Server locations: 143 | Maximum devices supported: Unlimited | 24/7 live chat support: Yes

Some of the best pricing around
Unlimited streaming devices allowed
Helpful live chat support
Incredibly fast
Lacks some bells and whistles
Some kill switch niggles 
Subscribe if:

✔️ You want the best budget secure VPN: Surfshark provides you with many features, unbelievable speeds, and a reliable network—all at a low price.

✔️ You need the fastest VPN around: currently topping our charts with over 950 Mbps average speeds, Surfshark is faster than all of our top picks. 

Don't subscribe if:

You need a bulletproof kill switch: our testing showed some issues with Surfshark's Windows kill switch. If you are worried about an accidental data leak, we'd recommend ExpressVPN or NordVPN. 

Bottom line: ⭐⭐⭐⭐½

🔒 Surfshark is an exceptional value-for-money VPN. With unparalleled speeds and unlimited simultaneous connections, you get a lot of VPNs for a low price. Try for yourself and see why it's our favorite cheap VPN with a 30-day money-back guarantee. 

Want to know more?

Check out our in-depth Surfshark VPN review and see why the fastest VPN is also our #1 budget pick. 

When we tested it last, Surfshark comfortably unblocked Netflix (in the US, UK, Canada, Australia, and more), Amazon Prime, Disney+, YouTube, and BBC iPlayer, immediately becoming a key contender in our streaming VPN round-up. We also threw several other services, including Australia's 9Now and 10Play, on top of ITV Hub and All4, which all passed with flying colors.

Surfshark also lands the #1 spot in our guide on cheap VPN providers, as you can get it for an effective monthly price of $1.99 for its two year plan. One subscription will cover unlimited simultaneous connections, which is another advantage compared to other best streaming VPNs. This means you can set it up on your devices and encourage those closest to you to stay safe online by sharing the subscription with your family or friends. 

Try Surfshark with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Besides providing quality service, Surfshark can help you avoid ISP throttling, also known as bandwidth throttling—a common practice of internet service providers (ISPs) that involves limiting high connection speed to encourage you to switch to more expensive internet plans. By masking your online activities, Surfshark prevents your ISP from throttling your connection, allowing you to enjoy your favorite TV shows and movies at high speeds. Additionally, Surfshark has proven it can reach blazing-fast speeds, with peaks of 950 Mbps, which means comfortable streaming in 4K.

However, our recent testing showed some issues with Surfshark's kill switch, a downside to its overall quality and reliability. If you are concerned about privacy and want to avoid a potentially dangerous accidental IP leak, you should go for ExpressVPN or NordVPN. Although Surfshark has excellent unblocking abilities, NordVPN did way better in recent tests. Additionally, Surfshark is incredibly easy to use—making it a good choice for beginners. But it also means it lacks a couple of extra features some power users with more extensive plans for their VPN might require. 

Overall, Surfshark is excellent value for money, and all but guarantees a fantastic streaming experience. You can always test it yourself with its 30-day money-back guarantee period.

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Surfshark test results:
AttributesNotesRating
DesignIntuitive and easy to use⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Ease of useAn excellent option for beginners and seamless connections⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
PerformanceThe fastest of all of our top picks⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
UnblockingUnblocked everything we threw at it with ease⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Security and privacySome kill switch issues; doesn’t provide a comprehensive security suite⭐⭐⭐
Customer supportLots of supporting articles, but awkward to navigate when you need help on the fly⭐⭐⭐⭐
PriceThe best cheap VPN on the market⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Other VPNs I've tested and recommend

Graphic of Hide.me VPN logo showing on various devices

(Image credit: Hide.me)

4. Hide.me

A powerhouse VPN for unblocking and speed

Streaming services unblocked: Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, BBC iPlayer, Disney Plus, ITV Hub, All4, 9Now, 10Play | Compatible devices: Windows, Mac, Linux, Android, iOS, Amazon Fire TV, Router | Server locations: 87 | Maximum devices supported: 10 | 24/7 live chat support: Yes

Incredible speed results
Unblocks all key streaming services
Good value for money
Kill switch issues
Needs a more recent security audit
Subscribe if:

✔️ You need a really fast VPN: hitting peaks of 950 Mbps average speeds, Hide.me is an excellent option for those to whom speed is crucial.

✔️ You are a more experienced user: beginners or less experienced users might find access to all of Hide.me’s features overwhelming. If that's the case, providers like ExpressVPN or Surfshark might be a better choice. 

Don't subscribe if:

You want a recent independent security audit: Hide.me hasn't updated this information in recent years, so if this is important for you, we recommend going for ExpressVPN or NordVPN.

❌ You want to install it on more than 10 devices: Hide.me only lets you have up to 10 installations at any one time, which will not work for you if you have more in mind. 

Bottom line: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

🔒 Hide.me is a popular choice for those who value speed above everything else. 

Want to know more?

All VPNs stream in high definition (HD), but Hide.me is exceptionally good when streaming in 4K. Learn about its other helpful features in our Hide.me review.

Hide.me has been creeping up in our estimations in the last year, making a name for itself as a formidable streaming VPN thanks to its strong track record of unblocking many of the popular streaming services and boasting some of the fastest speeds in our biannual tests. In fact, with an upgrade on most servers to 10 Gbps, Hide.me sees itself in our top 5 fastest VPN services, hitting peaks of 950 Mbps.

Backed by excellent WireGuard speeds, Hide.me is a superb choice for streaming. While it has previously struggled when it comes to unblocking Netflix catalogs in different countries, this time around there were no such issues. It was also able to unblock Disney Plus, Prime Video, UK services BBC iPlayer, All4, and ITV Hub without an issue, including Australia’s platforms 9Now and 10Play.

Try Hide.me with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Besides its fast connection speeds, Hide.me offers exceptional security features you can benefit from throughout the day, especially while streaming content. Its MultiHop feature lets you simultaneously connect to two servers to increase anonymity and privacy, similar to NordVPN’s Double VPN. However, Hide.me allows you to pick two servers, making it a flexible solution that won’t slow you down too much.

Still, it has its drawbacks. If you're hoping to make the most of its excellent free VPN offering, you'll be disappointed, as the streaming service unblocking is limited to paying customers only. Also, some kill switch issues persist, leaving users vulnerable when changing locations. It also quotes a security audit from 2015, which feels a little outdated if you ask us. Therefore, privacy-concerned users should choose ExpressVPN or NordVPN.

It is compatible with Windows, macOS, Android, iOS, Linux, Routers, Consoles, and Smart TVs. Additionally, it is hugely configurable. Now with an affordable 3-year plan (plus three months for free), Hide.me still stands up as a reliable VPN for unblocking streaming services, with speeds that'll make easy work of 4K streams.

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Hide.me test results:
AttributesNotesRating
DesignClear and straightforward interface⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Ease of useMore suitable for experienced and demanding users⭐⭐⭐
PerformanceVery fast, beaten only by Surfshark⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
UnblockingUnblocks all the major streaming services⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Security and privacySome kill switch issues; a security audit is outdated⭐⭐⭐
Customer supportLots of supporting articles, live chat is available 24/7⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
PriceOverall a good value for money⭐⭐⭐⭐

PureVPN working on desktop, laptop, smartphone and tablet

(Image credit: PureVPN)

5. PureVPN

Unblock the cheap and cheerful way

Streaming services unblocked: US Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, BBC iPlayer, Disney Plus, YouTube, HBO | Compatible devices: Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Android TV, Fire Stick | Server locations: 96 | Maximum devices supported: 10 | 24/7 live chat support: No

10 connections at any one time
Cheap long-term plans
Unblocks everything
Glitchy apps
Not great support site
SUBSCRIBE IF:

✔️ You want great unlocking capabilities: PureVPN worked like a charm during my tests, unblocking a long list of platforms.

✔️ You want a cheap VPN solution: you can bag a lengthy 5-year plan for just $1.33, which is great news for folks who want a long-term commitment.

DON'T SUBSCRIBE IF:

You rely on your kill switch: You rely on your kill switch: PureVPN's kill switch didn't quite hold up to scrutiny during testing, so I'd suggest sticking to NordVPN if it's a red flag.

❌ You need great customer support: PureVPN lacks the depth of support that you find in ExpressVPN's help center.

Bottom line: ⭐⭐⭐½

🔒 PureVPN has a great affordable price package and reliable access to all sorts of streaming services, big and small, but can't top its competitors.

WANT TO KNOW MORE?

Pure VPN has some of the best and most affordable subscription packages, and it's fast enough to support HD TV streaming. But is it really worth it? Read our full Pure VPN review to find out.

PureVPN is another fantastic budget option that'll help you check out your favorite shows for less, no matter where you are, but it also has its hangups. However, if you're less concerned with privacy and more focused on Netflix, then it could be worth checking out.

PureVPN is undoubtedly back on top of its game as an excellent choice for bypassing geo-restrictions on streaming services. It unblocked every service we tested, including Netflix catalogs worldwide, BBC iPlayer, Disney Plus, and Prime Video, making it part of our best streaming VPNs.

Try PureVPN with a 31-day money-back guarantee.

Its mobile experience has also seen some great improvements, including the addition of live chat within the app, steering you to the PureVPN website rather than, previously, an unbranded page. You can also create shortcuts, which is helpful for those who want to connect to a server and immediately launch their chosen streaming service.

In addition, its speeds sit above average in our latest results, with peaks of 650 Mbps— a drop from previous results of 840 Mbps. While a touch disappointing when compared to the speeds of our other recommended VPNs, it still serves as a speedy and reliable connection that'll handle 4K streams with ease.

However, if speed is a priority NordVPN, Surfshark, or Hide.me is a better choice. Additionally, in our testing, some security concerns did crop up, including apps sending crash reports without asking. PureVPN's support website also didn't meet our expectations, and there were also a few problems within the Windows and iOS clients, including kill switch issues and the inability to cancel connections.

If you're having doubts, PureVPN offers a 31-day money-back guarantee window. It is a solid streaming VPN with an impressive track record for unblocking. However, if you want more of the whole package, you'd be better off with other providers, such as ExpressVPN or NordVPN. 

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PureVPN test results:
AttributesNotesRating
DesignStraightforward interface design⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Ease of useSimple to use, but we’ve noticed some app annoyances and concerns⭐⭐⭐
PerformanceReliable, but average speeds⭐⭐⭐⭐
UnblockingUnblocks all the major streaming services⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Security and privacySome kill switch issues; we saw apps sending crash reports without asking⭐⭐⭐
Customer supportSignificantly behind our other top providers⭐⭐⭐
PriceGood value on the longer-term plans⭐⭐⭐⭐

How to choose a VPN

Really, much of what your choice of VPN provider will come down to is which streaming services you want access to no matter where you are. While our best streaming VPNs tick off most services across the board, it's fair to say some platforms put up more of a fight. 

Want to access a specific service?

All the VPNs on our list can unlock the most popular channels and services. But check out our guides below if you need something more specific:

1. Best Netflix VPN
2.
Best BBC iPlayer VPN
3.
Best Amazon Prime VPN
4.
Best Apple TV VPN
5.
Best Hulu VPN

This includes Netflix, the most popular streaming service in the world, and incidentally the toughest to unblock. BBC iPlayer has also been known to be many VPNs' kryptonite in the past. Whichever you want to tune into, though, we'll detail below which VPN provider can unblock what.

Lightning fast connection speeds and great security should also be top of your list of requirements. While fast speeds lend themselves to a strong, high-resolution stream with no buffering, security ensures your payment details are kept tightly under lock and key. You'll also want one with a decent network of servers, giving you a choice of ones to switch to on the off-chance connection proves slow.

You’ll also want wide support for various devices, as you may well be viewing content across multiple bits of hardware—from phones and computers to individual streaming devices like Apple TV, Amazon Fire, and Roku. We also favor streaming VPN providers that have fast, effective 24/7 live chat support—just in case you struggle to get things working.

FAQs

What is the best streaming VPN 2024?

Our latest round of testing shows that NordVPN is the best streaming VPN. It unblocks a ton of streaming services, including smaller regional platforms, to ensure that you never run out of new content (or old favorites) to check out. NordVPN is also our fastest VPN—so don't worry about being held up by that pesky buffering circle.

Is a VPN worth it for streaming?

The answer to that question entirely depends on what you want to stream and how often. If you're somebody who has an insatiable appetite for films and box sets and will go to any means to get all the content, then a VPN is an essential tool as it means you can start watching Netflix and Amazon Prime content that may not be available in your location.

Similarly, if you're a massive fan of a particular sport, but the coverage in the country where you live (or are visiting) just isn't up to snuff, then a VPN will help you to watch your favorite team or player with more comprehensive coverage from around the world.

If you need help getting set up, or want to know how to use a VPN, be sure to check out my in-depth guide.

Man holding padlock in front of the Netflix logo

(Image credit: Shutterstock / rafapress)

What streaming services work with a VPN?

The list is practically endless here. It would probably be quicker to list services that aren't unblockable by a VPN.

From our testing and using VPNs ourselves we've found that you can unblock Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, Peacock, BBC iPlayer, Sling TV, DAZN, YouTube, Disney Plus, Fubo, All 4, ITV Hub, and a whole host more domestic networks. If you're a little unsure and don't want to commit to a service without first knowing whether it will work with your streaming service of choice, then we'd recommend going for a VPN with a free trial and putting it through its paces risk-free.

It is possible that a VPN will work to unlock a service one day and not the next. This is more common with lower-quality providers, but if you find it happening to you, check out our guide on what to do when your VPN doesn't unblock Netflix anymore.

Can I use a streaming VPN to watch sports?

Absolutely, and over the last few years this has become a really popular reason to get hold of a VPN.

Want to watch the Super Bowl online through your usual domestic broadcaster while abroad? Or without commercials with BBC's Super Bowl coverage? A VPN is an ideal tool to help get around geo-restrictions.

The same goes if you pay for a costly Sky or BT Sport package for football and want to watch when you're on holiday. Or Aussie cricket and footie fans who just can't get the coverage they need when not Down Under.

In our testing, we've had success using VPNs for a variety of services, including Sky Go, Kayo, DAZN, Star Sports, and many, many more.

Should I go for a free streaming VPN?

I'd recommend avoiding free VPNs if your main purpose is reliable stream unblocking. They tend to come riddled with data limits, bandwidth restrictions, and seldom unblock streaming services reliably.

Even the best free VPN, PrivadoVPN, comes with data limits, and while our testing showed it unblocked US Netflix, it still pales in comparison to the likes of ExpressVPN, NordVPN, and Surfshark.

Edited by
River Hart Tech Software Editor
Edited by
River Hart

River helps take care of cybersecurity content on TechRadar—ranging from breaking news pieces, reviews, and buying guides.

Disclaimer

We test and review VPN services in the context of legal recreational uses. For example:
1. Accessing a service from another country (subject to the terms and conditions of that service).
2. Protecting your online security and strengthening your online privacy when abroad.
We do not support or condone the illegal or malicious use of VPN services. Consuming pirated content that is paid-for is neither endorsed nor approved by Future Publishing.

Andreas Theodorou
Editor-in-Chief of Tech Software

Andreas has been with TechRadar as Future PLC's Editor-in-Chief of Tech Software since March 2023, supporting content and teams on VPNs, antivirus, and other cybersecurity tools. He's previously written for and led content at ProPrivacy, Business2Community, and The Tech Report. After completing a Master of Research degree, Andreas fell in love with all things cybersecurity; combining his passions to help expose the prevalence of ad tech in the charity sector and raise awareness of digital privacy around the world.

With contributions from