Twitch, a subsidiary of Amazon, provides niche content, including video game live streams, esports competitions, and music broadcasts. While you can access Twitch from various locations across the globe, some countries such as China and Russia block access to the website entirely. Thankfully, there is a way you can access Twitch from the UK, Australia, Canada, France, Germany, or anywhere else internationally.
The solution is to use a Virtual Private Network (VPN). A VPN sends your traffic through an encrypted tunnel via an intermediary server in a location of your choosing. That means it can spoof your location to make it appear you’re in a chosen locale and enable access to geo-locked streaming sites including Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime Video. It also bypasses ISP (or government) firewalls so you can unblock censored content. What’s more, the encryption component of a VPN means your activity will be hidden from your ISP and anyone else who might have monitoring tools in place.
The one problem with VPNs is trying to select the right one. There are so many to choose from but they don’t all offer a comparable service. In this post, we reveal the best VPNs for Twitch, based on the following criteria:
- Has a large selection of servers.
- Provides a fast and reliable service
- Uses strong encryption
- Maintains no logs of user activity
- Offers excellent customer support
Here is our list of the best VPNs for Twitch in 2018:
ExpressVPN operates a vast network of over 1,500 servers spanning 94 countries. All servers are optimized for speed, meaning you should never have an issue streaming HD content from Twitch and other sites such as Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime Video. What’s more, if you’re gaming just for fun or to stream through Twitch, you won’t have to deal with any frustrating lagging.
This provider offers stellar customer support in the form of reliable and knowledgeable 24/7 live chat. Whether you need help with setup or troubleshooting, it has you covered.
Security-conscious users will be more than happy with ExpressVPN’s 256-bit AES encryption that’s coupled with SHA256 authentication and perfect forward secrecy. The built-in kill switch and DNS leak protection help ensure data is always locked inside the encrypted tunnel.
No user activity is ever tracked and minimal logs are kept.. No IP addresses are recorded. You can sign up with just an email and pay using bitcoin, which is great for those who like to remain more anonymous online. There’s even a dedicated Tor site for optimal privacy.
Apps are available for Windows, MacOS, Linux, iOS, and Android, and ExpressVPN can be configured with some routers. A basic plan allows up to three simultaneous connections.
RISK-FREE OFFER: Get three months free when you purchase an ExpressVPN annual plan. Better still, there’s a 30-day money-back guarantee so there’s no risk.
Read our in-depth review of ExpressVPN.
When you choose NordVPN, you gain access to an ample network of more than 3,300 servers in over 60 countries. This is another fast and reliable service that makes streaming and gaming a breeze. It even has servers optimized for viewing video content.
Aside from Twitch, it can enable access to plenty of other sites, such as Netflix, BBC iPlayer, HBO, Hulu, and Amazon Prime Video. What’s more, top-notch customer support is always there to lend a helping hand.
Security is a priority for NordVPN and it offers 256-bit AES encryption, perfect forward secrecy, a kill switch, and DNS leak protection. You can rest assured none of your details are recorded, as it adheres to a strict no-logs policy.
A basic plan enables you to connect up to six devices at a time, which is ideal for families or those who like to switch between devices. Apps are available for Windows, MacOS, iOS, and Android.
Read our in-depth review of NordVPN.
IPVanish is a very popular provider with torrenters and Kodi users, but it’s ideal for streaming, too. It has more than 1,000 servers in over 60 countries, and although it doesn’t unblock Netflix, it pegs some of the fastest speeds we’ve seen and can provide access to other popular streaming sites.
On the security front, it uses 256-bit encryption along with SHA512 authentication and perfect forward secrecy. The kill switch and DNS (including IPv6) leak protection provide an additional layer of protection and ensure your information stays safe. No logs are kept whatsoever.
IPVanish has apps available for Windows, MacOS, Android, and iOS. You can connect up to five devices simultaneously.
Read our in-depth review of IPVanish.
CyberGhost is making a push to become seriously competitive in the field of streaming with its growing network of 1,200 servers in 57 countries. Its fast speeds and ability to unblock popular sites mean it’s an excellent choice for those wanting to view video content. Aside from Twitch, you can unblock Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Hulu, and more. Plus it’s ideal for playing online games.
Your privacy and security are top priorities for CyberGhost. The service uses 256-bit encryption which is considered pretty much as good as it gets. This comes with SHA256 authentication and perfect forward secrecy. There’s a built-in kill switch, DNS and IPv6 leak protection, and automatic wifi protection for unfamiliar networks.
A basic plan gives you the ability to connect five devices simultaneously. Apps can be downloaded for Windows, MacOS, Android, and iOS.
SAVE OVER 70%: You can save big on a two-year CyberGhost subscription and it comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Read our in-depth review of CyberGhost.
PrivateVPN is the newest and smallest provider on the list, but it’s definitely deserving of a spot. It uses its relatively tiny network of servers to pack a big punch in the VPN industry. Its fast speeds make streaming HD content stress-free, and you can access sites like Twitch, Netflix, Hulu, and more. You can also play online games without any noticeable lag.
Security comes in the form of 128-bit or 256-bit AES encryption, depending on which protocol you decide to go with. You also have perfect forward secrecy, a kill switch, and DNS and IPv6 leak protection. PrivateVPN maintains a strict no-logging policy, holding true to its name.
Apps are available for Windows, MacOS, iOS, and Android. A basic plan enables you to connect up to six devices simultaneously.
EXCLUSIVE SAVINGS: Get five months extra free and save over 70% when you opt for a PrivateVPN annual plan.
Read our in-depth review of PrivateVPN.
Can I use a free VPN with Twitch?
No doubt you’ll come across a ton of free VPN services while doing even the slightest bit of research. These are certainly tempting but are generally not recommended. On the practical side of things, a free VPN often means limited access to server locations, long wait times, and slow, unreliable connections.
Even though they’re offering a subpar service, it doesn’t really come without cost. Free VPN providers need to make money somehow. This often leads to shady business practices that jeopardize the privacy and security of users.
It’s not unusual for free a VPN provider to track user activity, inject ads, or sell user information to third parties. Others can be even more harmful and inject malware. We’ve even seen a case of a free VPN provider taking users’ bandwidth and using it in a massive botnet.
With so many potential issues, it’s worth the few bucks a month you pay for a top-quality provider.
How to sign up for a free Twitch account
Although Twitch is reportedly blocked in some locations, such as China and Russia, once you’re signed up to a VPN, you should be able to access it from anywhere. Simply connect through a server in a country where Twitch isn’t blocked, access the Twitch website, and you’re free to stream. Even without signing up for an account, you can access a limited number of features.
However, when you opt for a free account, you’ll be able to “interact with broadcasters and the community via chat, follow your favorite broadcasters to receive alerts when they go live, and, of course, broadcast your own games to the Twitch community.” Simply select Sign Up and connect through Facebook or provide a few details.
How to sign up for Twitch Prime
For more perks, such as in-game loot and ad-free viewing, you can upgrade to Twitch Prime. This must be linked to an Amazon Prime or Amazon Prime Video account. If you already have one of those, you can simply link your Twitch account to your existing Amazon account.
While logged into Twitch, select Try Prime in the navigation menu.
In the resulting screen, select connect your Twitch account, and in the next screen, select Confirm.
And that’s it, you have Twitch Prime.
If you don’t have an Amazon Prime or Amazon Prime Video account, you’ll have to pay for one. Prices vary depending on which country you’re in. In the US, a full Amazon Prime account is $99.99 (GBP £73.76) per year, which isn’t a bad deal, considering all of the perks you get. These include free shipping on many Amazon products, access to Amazon Prime Video, and discounts on pre-release box games.
Before you go ahead and sign up, it’s worth noting a rather large caveat. Your Amazon Prime billing address needs to match the location you’re in. Amazon Prime accounts are available for the following countries:
- United States
- United Kingdom
If you sign up in an incorrect region and try to link your account, you may get an error:
“Oh no! We can’t enable Twitch Prime on your account.”
If you run into this problem, this guide released on the Twitch blog should be able to help you out.
For most countries not on the list, the other option is to create an Amazon Prime Video account available anywhere the Prime Video site can be accessed. Aside from being able to upgrade to Twitch Prime, you’ll be able to access Amazon Prime Video content, but you don’t get some of the other perks that a regular Prime account offers, such as free shipping.