The best VPN for streaming in 2023on May 15, 2023 at 11:16 Tech Advisor


Streaming services like Netflix or Disney+ have given us all easy access to more TV and film than ever before, but there’s a catch: some streaming services are only available in certain countries, while others have different libraries depending on where you live, or just charge radically different pricing worldwide.

That means you may want to access a version of a video streamer that’s not available where you are – whether that’s to catch up on BBC iPlayer from outside the UK, watch the best of US Netflix from elsewhere in the world, or just save money by signing up as if you’re in a country with cheaper rates.

The good news is that you can get around these blocks using a VPN. Below you’ll find the top five VPNs we recommend specifically for streaming TV and film online – all tested and reviewed by us – and underneath that some more detailed advice on what to look for in a VPN, and the risks involved.

Best streaming VPN 2023

1. NordVPN


Reliably unblocks popular streaming services

Great speeds

Independently audited


Not the absolute cheapest VPN

Not unlimited connections

Price When Reviewed:

From £3.58 per month

Best Prices Today:

£2.89 at NordVPN

NordVPN is an excellent choice for streaming thanks to excellent speeds and wide device support.

The service reliably unblocks Netflix in various regions as well as lots of other streaming services including BBC iPlayer in the UK. Its SmartPlay feature means you don’t have to think about choosing the right server: you just pick the country and the apps will select the best server for streaming.

NordVPN apps are available for just about any device you could ever want to use for streaming and there’s 24/7 tech support for help when you need it.

Using its NordLynx protocol, based on WireGuard, Nord’s connection speeds are some of the fastest around and the apps are very easy to use. 

It’s not the absolute cheapest option around, and has a limit to the number of devices using the service at the same time, but if those aren’t problems (and they won’t be for many) then NordVPN is a top choice.

You can see NordVPN’s latest deals here.

Read our full

NordVPN review

2. Surfshark


Unlimited connections

Audited no-logs policy

Multi-Hop severs


Doesn’t list which services it unblocks

Price doubles on renewal

Price When Reviewed:

From £2.43 per month

Best Prices Today:

£1.85 at Surfshark

Surfshark is a great choice for unblocking streaming services. It doesn’t list the services it unblocks, but it does have thousands of ‘streaming optimised’ servers in 65 countries.

More importantly, we’ve found it reliably unblocks video from various streaming services in our tests, and have had no issues with iPlayer whenever we’ve tried to watch something.

It will also unblock 15 Netflix regions, as well as Disney+, Amazon Prime, HBO Max and plenty of others.

The reason we’ve put Surfshark above some others here is because it’s such a great-value package: it doesn’t put any limits on the number of devices you can use, supports WireGuard for very fast speeds, and has a good selection of apps including Amazon Fire TV. Just watch for the steep price hike when you renew – a good reason to go for a longer two-year subscription.

Read our full

Surfshark review

3. CyberGhost


Unblocks lots of video services

Recent independent audit


Price doubles when two-year subscription renews

Price When Reviewed:

From £2.16 per month

Best Prices Today:

£2.16 at CyberGhost

CyberGhost is one of the most reliably streaming VPNs around. When we last checked, it was able to unblock every streaming service we tried including Netflix, Disney+, BBC iPlayer and ITV X (another UK-based service). And since CyberGhost has an absolutely huge selection of servers, if the recommended one doesn’t work, you can try a few others.

The other highlight is performance. With WireGuard available on all its apps, you can expect speedy connections for things like downloading files, streaming in 4K, and gaming.

It’s a well-established VPN service which is based in Romania. That’s good for privacy, and you don’t have to blindly trust CyberGhost’s privacy policy as Deloitte has audited it and found no issues.

Factor in the tempting deals on two- or three-year subscriptions and the ability to use the service on up to seven devices at the same time, it’s a great option for anyone looking for a capable VPN that won’t break the bank. Just make sure you cancel that subscription before it renews to avoid paying a higher price for the next one.

Read our full

CyberGhost review

4. ExpressVPN


Fast, reliable connections

Strong privacy & security

Great unblocking

Additional MediaStreamer service



No double-hop option

Only 5 connections

Price When Reviewed:

From £5.60 per month

Best Prices Today:

£5.60 at ExpressVPN

ExpressVPN is the one to choose if you’re looking for a premium VPN service that will reliably unblock streaming content, and you’re not worried about paying a bit more each year.

There are lots of apps, plus browser extensions that actually use the VPN service (and aren’t just proxies), and the company claims not just to unblock over 200 streaming services, but to actively monitor them all and ensure they all work. 

ExpressVPN also offers a router ‘app’ which is considerably easier to use than others, even making it possible to change server without too much hassle. This allows you to unblock content on an Apple TV, Xbox, PS5 or any other device that doesn’t support VPNs natively. If you want all your home devices to connect via a VPN, ExpressVPN is the best choice for running on a router. It even sells its own Wi-Fi 6 router now.

As well as the VPN service, it also offers MediaStreamer DNS which you can use if you have any trouble unblocking while using the VPN app. This is a handy alternative which has previously worked for us when we had trouble accessing iPlayer.

There’s great tech support if you ever need help, and the proprietary Lightway protocol means you get quick speeds that are unlikely to slow down your broadband connection. Privacy and security are also excellent, and the company carried out almost a dozen audits in 2022, covering its apps and privacy policy.

ExpressVPN does lack a few features, such as any double-hop routes which send your connection via two servers instead of one. And if you don’t use the router app, you’re limited to connecting only five devices at the same time.

Get three months free when you sign up for a year of ExpressVPN

Read our full

ExpressVPN review

5. Private Internet Access


Audited no-logs policy

Good at unblocking streaming services


Price doubles at end of subscription

Browser extensions are not VPNs

Price When Reviewed:

From £2.37 per month

Private Internet Access is a feature-packed VPN service which should appeal whether you’re a gamer, privacy advocate or want to unblock streaming services. It’s good value, too.

It’s not the fastest or cheapest out there, but it does have a heck of a lot of servers, is highly configurable, and now has a reassuring Deloitte audit which makes its US location a non-issue for the privacy-conscious.

It isn’t our first choice for unblocking streaming services, but it should unblock everything you need it to, and ticks enough boxes elsewhere to be well worth considering.

See all prices and plans on Private Internet Access’s website.

Read our full

Private Internet Access review

What to look for in a VPN for streaming

The first thing to bear in mind is that accessing any of streaming service from another country could violate their terms of service, and you risk losing your account, so proceed at your own risk. Saying that, we’re yet to hear of anyone having their account terminated: those services want you to keep paying, so they’re only going after the VPNs that are circumventing their blocks, not the consumers.

What you may experience is that – on occasion – you might not be able to unblock, say, Disney+ with your chosen VPN service. When that happens, use the VPN’s tech support, which is usually available as 24/7 live chat, to find out how to solve the problem. Or simply try connecting to a different server in the same country.

The other thing to look out for when choosing a VPN specifically for streaming services is to check the which services the VPN claims to unblock, and specifically the regions you may want to use.

Beyond this, a fast, reliable service is of course desirable, as is the availability of apps for the devices you want to watch video on, such as an Amazon Fire TV, Android TV and others. 

Bear in mind that some devices don’t support VPN connections natively. It is possible to set up a VPN on a PlayStation, Xbox, or Apple TV, but it’s certainly not a quick and convenient process, so even if a VPN service advertises support for those platforms, take it with a pinch of salt.

If a VPN doesn’t sound like the right option for you, it’s worth considering the StreamLocator Hub. Instead of connecting to different servers, this Hub projects its own Wi-Fi network which you can connect to, and bypasses geo-blocked content automatically.  

But for a low monthly price, a VPN is exactly what most people need to unblock streaming services. Here are what we consider to be the best options overall for watching TV and films online.

Related articles for further reading

What is a VPN and why you need oneHow to use a VPNHow to speed up a VPNBest VPN for WindowsBest VPN deals

Personal Software, Security, Streaming Media, VPN

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