7 Best VPNs for Streaming in 2023 (Fastest Streams)
Streaming sites provide excellent entertainment, but it’s very annoying how most of them geo-block their shows and movies. Due to that, you can’t watch whatever you want simply because you’re from the “wrong” country. But a VPN can help you bypass those restrictions by hiding your real location.
Of course, not all VPNs provide a good streaming experience. We tested the top ones to find the best VPNs for streaming in 2023. Keep reading to see what each one has to offer. We also answered some FAQs to provide more actionable information.
- NordVPN – best streaming VPN
- Surfshark – stream on unlimited devices
- AtlasVPN – good budget-friendly VPN
- PrivateVPN – great beginner-friendly option
- ExpressVPN – fastest streaming VPN
- CyberGhost VPN – tons of dedicated streaming servers
- Private Internet Access – excellent streaming and privacy
How to Choose the Best VPN for Streaming
Here are the metrics we used to find the best VPNs for streaming movies and TV shows:
- Unblocks top streaming sites – a streaming VPN needs to be able to unblock popular sites like Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Disney+, Hulu, and Amazon Prime.
- Large server networks – it’s important for the VPN to have servers in most parts of the world. That way, you can unblock streaming services from multiple countries to enjoy more variety.
- Fast speeds – VPNs may slow down your speeds, so it’s important to pick a VPN that minimizes the speed loss. We only recommend VPNs that provide the fastest streaming speeds on the market.
- Easy to use – good streaming VPNs should have apps for all devices that are easy to install. The apps should also be intuitive, easy to navigate, and come with 1-click connections.
- Simultaneous connections – most VPNs allow 5-7 simultaneous connections. That way, you can unblock streaming sites on multiple devices, which is perfect for a large household.
- Good security and privacy – on top of unblocking streaming services, VPNs should also secure your data. The VPNs on this list use bank-grade encryption and have kill switches. They also come with no-logs policies to protect your privacy.
- Great customer support – the best streaming VPNs provide multiple support channels. The VPNs we recommend have 24/7 live chat, responsive email support, and in-depth support libraries.
- Good value – we only recommend VPNs that are affordable, have flexible plans, and come with risk-free money-back guarantees. They also provide extra features like split-tunneling and ad blockers.
Top 7 VPNs for Streaming in 2023
We spent weeks testing and researching 20+ top VPNs to see which ones provide the best streaming experience. According to our results, these are the best 6 VPNs for streaming in 2023:
NordVPN is by far the best VPN for video streaming. We ran multiple tests and it was always able to unblock top sites like Netflix and Amazon Prime. It also worked really well with less popular sites like VRV and Crunchyroll.
On top of that, NordVPN is one of the fastest VPNs on the market. We were always able to load HD and 4K videos instantly – even on distant servers. What’s more, we never noticed any buffering while skipping through the videos.
This VPN also has 5,100+ servers in 60 countries. So it’s extremely simple to find a nearby server to get good speeds. It’s also very easy to unblock TV shows and movies from tons of countries. We actually managed to unblock 10+ Netflix libraries – including the US, the UK, Canada, and Japan.
And with this VPN provider, you get excellent security. It has bank-grade encryption, a kill switch, and a twice-audited no-logs policy. It also has a reliable ad blocker called CyberSec that gets rid of annoying ads on all sites. Also, it provides 24/7 live chat support and very responsive email support.
NordVPN allows 6 simultaneous connections, has cheap plans, and comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
- Thousands of lightning-fast and well-optimized servers
- Unblocks all the major streaming sites
- Fully supports Torrenting and P2P
- Strict no-logs policy and RAM-disk servers
- Ad blocker and malware protection features
- Robust security features and military-grade encryption to protect you from DDoS attacks and other online threats
- 24/7 live chat support
- 30-day money-back guarantee
- Only 6 simultaneous connections
- No free trial
Surfshark is the perfect streaming VPN for families or people who want to save money on their subscriptions. It allows unlimited connections, meaning you can use it on as many devices as you want. And it can easily unblock popular sites like Netflix and Disney+.
Not only that, but this VPN also provides lightning-fast streaming speeds. In our tests, HD videos on Netflix always loaded in less than 5 seconds – even when we were connected to very distant servers. We also never experienced quality drops or stuttering.
What’s more, Surfshark has 3,200+ servers in 60+ countries. You’ll never get bored because you’ll always be able to unblock new content from different countries.
And this streaming VPN has easy-to-use apps for all devices. Also, it comes with 24/7 live chat and very helpful support guides. And it provides excellent security – including double VPN connections and a good ad blocker called CleanWeb.
Surfshark has some of the cheapest plans on the market and backs all purchases with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
- A very affordable VPN provider
- Unlimited simultaneous connections
- Ad-blocking feature
- Unblocks streaming platforms
- A fast and light WireGuard protocol
- Allows split-tunneling and has a multi-hop VPN feature
- No-log policy and robust security features
- GPS spoofing on Android devices
- 30-day money-back guarantee
- No free version
- Does not allow P2P seeding
AtlasVPN is a great option if you’re on a budget. That’s because it has really cheap long-term plans. Also, it allows unlimited connections, so you can use the VPN on as many devices as you want. That also means you can share the subscription costs with your friends to save money.
AtlasVPN has 700+ servers in 30+ countries, and almost all of them are optimized for streaming. That means they refresh their IP addresses very often to avoid getting blocked. In our tests, we were able to unblock popular sites like Netflix US, BBC iPlayer, and Disney+.
We also like how fast this VPN is. When we ran speed tests, we were able to load HD videos instantly and they didn’t buffer. Also, 4K videos loaded in just 1-2 seconds and there was only minor buffering when we skipped through them.
AtlasVPN is also pretty user-friendly because it only has a basic design. Due to that, you never feel overwhelmed when using it. Also, the few settings and features that are available have quick, helpful explanations, so you always know what they do. And while this VPN doesn’t have 24/7 live chat, it provides very responsive and helpful email support.
This VPN has a great free plan and one of the cheapest long-term plans on the market and backs all plans with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
- Very affordable plans and it has a free version
- Fast Speeds
- Helpful against an ISP throttling your connection
- Unlimited device support
- WireGuard protocol, DNS leak protection, and strong security features
- Unblocks streaming services
- 30-day money-back guarantee
- Limited Linux app
- Based in the US
- Not so many servers
PrivateVPN is the perfect streaming VPN for people who have never used such a service. Its apps are very minimalistic, so you don’t feel overwhelmed by too many features. Also, the app interfaces are very easy to navigate and there’s a quick-connect feature for fast access to speedy servers.
And this VPN is excellent for streaming – it unblocks sites like Hulu and Netflix on all sites without any issues. It also works really well with smaller sites like Sony Crackle, ABC, and Pandora Radio.
We also like how fast this VPN is. We always experienced minimal slowdowns – even on the most distant servers.
What’s more, PrivateVPN provides very good security. It prevents traffic leaks via its kill switch and secures your data with military-grade encryption. Also, it has a no-logs policy to protect your privacy.
This streaming VPN allows 6 simultaneous connections, has super cheap plans, and has a 30-day money-back guarantee.
- Supports P2P traffic and allows port forwarding
- Unlimited bandwidth and great speeds
- Unblocks most streaming platforms
- Zero-logging policy
- Free Static IP servers
- 10 simultaneous connections
- 30-day money-back guarantee
- Not as many servers as other VPN providers
- No split-tunneling
ExpressVPN is the best VPN for streaming when it comes to speeds. It’s mostly thanks to its proprietary Lightway protocol which was designed to provide blazing-fast speeds. In our tests, 4K videos always loaded in 3-5 seconds – even on WiFi connections with a weak signal!
Furthermore, this VPN unblocks tons of streaming services. It works with Netflix, Amazon Prime, and BBC iPlayer – among other sites. Plus it has 3,000+ servers in 90+ countries, so you can pretty much unblock TV shows and movies from any country you want.
ExpressVPN has apps for most platforms – including routers. They’re extremely easy to install and use thanks to their intuitive interfaces. Plus, there are tons of helpful tutorials on this VPN’s site. And there’s 24/7 live chat, so you can always find a solution if you experience any problems.
You also get excellent security. There’s a kill switch, powerful encryption, and an audited no-logs policy. Also, you get RAM-only servers, meaning every reset wipes all data.
And ExpressVPN has split-tunneling – it lets you choose which apps use the VPN and which apps use your local network. You can use it to only route streaming traffic through the VPN to further increase your speeds.
This VPN allows 5 simultaneous connections, has affordable plans, and comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
- Works with streaming
- Supports torrenting
- No-logs policy
- TrustedServer technology with RAM-only servers
- Premium security features
- 30-day money-back guarantee
- Expensive subscription plans
- Only 5 simultaneous connections
CyberGhost VPN is a great streaming VPN if you want to unblock dozens of streaming sites both big and small. It has tons of sites in 10+ countries that unblock 50+ streaming services – including Netflix, Amazon Prime, HBO Go, HBO Nordic, and Comedy Central.
It’s very easy to use this VPN to connect to its dedicated streaming servers. The apps have an intuitive interface and all specialized servers have their own categories.
Plus, CyberGhost VPN provides really fast streaming speeds. We noticed some minor buffering on very distant servers, but overall HD and 4K videos loaded very fast.
We also love that this VPN has a huge server network – 7,400+ servers in 90+ countries. You’ll always find a nearby server to get fast speeds. Also, you’ll be able to unblock even the most obscure streaming sites and enjoy tons of content variety.
And CyberGhost VPN is also secure. It has 256-bit AES encryption, an always-on kill switch, and a no-logs policy. It also only uses RAM-only servers.
If you ever experience any issues, you can contact this VPN’s support reps via live chat 24/7. There are also dozens of helpful support guides.
CyberGhost VPN allows 7 simultaneous connections, is very cheap, and backs long-term plans with a 45-day refund. If you get the shortest plan, it comes with a 14-day money-back guarantee.
- Good for streaming and torrenting
- WireGuard protocol available
- No Logs
- Offers Dedicated IP option
- Free browser extension
- 45-day money-back guarantee
- No third-party audits
- Messy app’s interface
7. Private Internet Access
Private Internet Access (PIA) provides really good streaming. It unblocks multiple Netflix and Amazon Prime libraries, and also works with Disney+. What’s more, it can unblock small sites like Pandora Radio and DAZN.
We really like how good PIA is for privacy and security. It protects your data with bank-grade encryption, a kill switch, and a no-logs policy. What’s more, its no-logs policy has been proven true many times in court. And this streaming VPN even has open-source apps – that means anyone can inspect the code to make sure they’re safe to use.
This provider also has very fast speeds thanks to its speed-optimized servers and use of the WireGuard protocol. In our tests, 4K videos loaded in 5-10 seconds and never buffered when we skipped through them.
PIA has apps for most platforms, and they’re very easy to install and use. PIA also has really good customer support – including in-depth FAQs and troubleshooting guides.
This VPN allows 10 simultaneous connections, has cheap plans, and comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
- Thousands of servers
- Great for torrenting and P2P
- Strong security and encryption
- Block ads, trackers, and malware
- 10 simultaneous device connections
- Anonymous payment methods
- 30-day money-back guarantee
- Based in the US
- Not all streaming services can be unblocked
Best VPNs for Streaming FAQs
This is where we answer the most common questions people ask about streaming with VPNs. If you have other questions, just leave them in the comments and we’ll try to answer them as soon as possible.
What’s the Best Streaming VPN?
The best streaming VPN should be able to unblock top sites like Netflix and Amazon Prime. We like NordVPN the most because it works with all sites, has blazing-fast speeds, and is very easy to use.
But all the other VPNs on our list are really good for streaming too. Make sure to check each mini-review to see which VPN offers what you need.
Do VPNs Slow Down Your Streaming Speeds?
Some VPNs might cause noticeable slowdowns, but the best VPNs for streaming minimize the speed loss. They do that by using large server networks, optimizing their servers for speed, and providing access to fast VPN protocols. All the VPNs we recommend have very fast streaming speeds.
If you do experience annoying slowdowns, here’s how to get rid of them:
- Don’t use the OpenVPN protocol because it’s usually slow. Instead, use faster alternatives like WireGuard and IKEv2/IPSec.
- If possible, connect to a server that’s close to your location. That way, data travels faster between your device and the VPN server, so your speed will be faster.
- If the VPN app displays the server load or ping, connect to a server with low metrics. Low ping and load usually equal fast speeds.
- Don’t use your streaming VPN over WiFi – use it over a wired connection instead. A weak WiFi signal will usually tank your VPN speeds.
- If split-tunneling is available, use it to only route streaming traffic through the VPN. If the VPN has less data to route and encrypt, it will provide faster speeds.
- Shut down any web-connected app you’re not using so that they don’t eat up your bandwidth. For example, you don’t need to leave Skype, Steam, and uTorrent on while you’re watching Netflix.
Can VPNs Make Streaming Faster?
Usually no – VPNs can’t increase your original ISP speeds. But they can increase streaming speeds if your ISP is throttling them. By hiding your traffic, VPNs make it impossible for your ISP to selectively throttle your streaming speeds. They won’t be able to see what online services you’re using, after all.
How to Unblock Streaming Sites with a VPN
It’s very simple to use a streaming VPN – just follow these steps:
- Sign up for a good VPN for streaming. We like NordVPN the most.
- Download and install the VPN provider’s app to your device.
- Open the VPN app and connect to a VPN server. Make sure it’s in the same country as the content you want to unblock. If it’s a US title, use a US VPN server.
- Binge your favorite TV shows and movies as much as you want!
How Do VPNs Unblock Streaming Sites?
VPNs help you bypass geo-blocks by hiding your IP address, which reveals your real location – the city and country you’re in. They do that by routing your traffic through an encrypted VPN server.
Basically, instead of this:
You → ISP → Website
Your connection looks like this:
You → ISP → VPN Server → Website
Any website you connect to will think your traffic is coming from the VPN server. Due to that, the site will only see the VPN’s IP address, so your IP remains “hidden.”
Can Streaming Sites Block VPNs?
Yes, most popular streaming sites are able to block VPNs. They do it by blocking the IP addresses of VPN servers. That way, the servers can’t connect to the streaming services anymore to exchange data with them. But the best VPNs for streaming bypasses those IP blocks by regularly refreshing their servers’ IPs.
Streaming sites can find VPN server IP addresses by using IP location services like MaxMind and IP2Location. For a price, those services give streaming sites access to databases that contain VPN IP addresses. And those databases receive regular updates.
It’s very easy to tell if a streaming site is blocking your VPN. You’ll normally see an error message saying that the site detected you’re using a VPN and that you need to disconnect from it. We never saw those messages when testing all the VPNs on this list.
Why Isn’t My Streaming VPN Working?
If that doesn’t work, there’s a chance the streaming site managed to block the IP address of the VPN server you’re using. In that case, simply connect to a different VPN server in the same location. Alternatively, if the VPN allows it, use the IP refresh option to instantly get a new IP address.
Will Using Obfuscation Bypass a Streaming Site’s VPN Blocks?
No, obfuscation can’t get around VPN blocks from streaming sites. It’s a feature that hides your VPN traffic to make your VPN connection look like a normal Internet connection. But streaming sites only block VPN IPs – they can’t block VPN connections.
Obfuscation is only useful when you’re dealing with deep packet inspection. That’s a network traffic analysis method that can detect and block OpenVPN traffic. So you should only use it in restrictive countries like China.
Another reason to avoid using obfuscation while streaming is because your speeds will be slower. Obfuscation adds another layer of encryption to your connection, so it slows it down. In our tests, our obfuscated connections were 50% slower than our normal connections.
Can You Use a Free Streaming VPN?
There are free streaming VPNs on the market, but we don’t recommend using them. Free VPNs usually have slow speeds, buggy apps, don’t have customer support and important security features, and log and sell your data.
Plus, many free VPNs limit how much data you can use. They usually use 500 MB or 2 GB data caps – either each day or each month. Consider that watching 3 hours of HD videos on Netflix eats up around 3 GB per hour. It’s obvious that, with a free VPN, you’ll barely be able to watch 1-2 episodes of a TV show or half of a movie.
Also, most free VPNs can’t unblock popular streaming sites. They don’t regularly refresh their servers’ IP addresses, so top streaming sites like Netflix block them very often.
It’s always better to use a paid premium VPN instead. They unblock top streaming sites and have unlimited data, fast speeds, excellent security, and easy-to-use apps.