A VPN functions by routing all the traffic flowing to and from your device via an encrypted tunnel. Using a VPN will keep government surveillance agencies at bay and make it almost impossible for anyone to monitor your digital footprint. A VPN can also grant you access to geo-restricted content that’s not normally available in Ukraine, such as the US version of Netflix.
The VPN providers we’ve recommended on this list offer a wide variety of server locations to choose from. This means it’s possible to get an IP address from Ukraine even if you’re currently in the US, the UK, Australia, Germany, Canada, India, China, Hong Kong, France, Norway, or Japan.
There is a lot of detail covered on each of the providers below, but if you only have time for a summary, here is our list of the best VPNs for Ukraine:
- ExpressVPN Our top choice! A large network of superfast servers dotted in 90 countries throughout the globe. Strong on privacy and apps are secure. Includes 30-day money back guarantee.
- NordVPN Budget provider that doesn’t skimp on privacy or speed. Apps are secure and keeps no logs.
- CyberGhost Beginner-friendly apps and some of the fastest servers we’ve tested. Strong on privacy and security.
- IPVanish Circumvents most internet restrictions and its servers can provide impressive streaming speeds. Cheaper options on this list.
- PrivateVPN Gaining a solid reputation for its unblocking capabilities. Not as many servers as its rivals.
The best VPNs for Ukraine
There are a plethora of VPN providers out there but don’t make the mistake of placing them all in the same category. They offer varying levels of customer service, encryption standards, and speeds.
To make it on our list of the best VPNs for Ukraine, providers should meet the following standards:
- Has a wide network of servers across the world with bonus points for locations in Ukraine
- Is known to unblock geo-restricted streaming services with ease
- Offers a fast and reliable service with minimal downtime
- Uses strong encryption parameters so your location remains hidden
- Allows multiple simultaneous connections
- Provides top-notch customer support
Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS
ExpressVPN tops our list due to its status as one of the hardiest VPN providers out there, incorporating military-grade encryption standards, fast speeds, and a network of servers that traverses the globe.
At the time of writing, this provider offers more than 3,000 servers to choose from, including options in Ukraine. ExpressVPN reliably unblocks a variety of geo-restricted streaming services including US Netflix, HBO, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, and BBC iPlayer. Live chat is available 24/7 and the support team is quick to iron out any concerns or problems you might have. The service works flawlessly overall.
ExpressVPN ranks well from a privacy angle too. It uses 256-bit AES encryption; that’s an industry-leading standard also referred to as ‘military-grade.’ There’s a built-in internet kill switch which means the connection will remain secure even if the VPN connection drops somehow. This is coupled with DNS leak protection, so your information always remains secure within the encrypted tunnel.
This provider has a policy of not storing any detailed user logs, bar some non-identifying metadata. It offers well-designed, minimalistic apps for Android and iOS, as well as aesthetically pleasing desktop versions for Windows and MacOS. A single subscription allows for three simultaneous connections.
- Operates more than 3,000 servers spanning 94 countries including some in Ukraine
- Access geo-restricted content from anywhere
- Superfast servers are great for streaming HD content
- Best-in-class encryption makes for solid security and privacy
- 24/7 live chat support staff are on the ball
- Only allows 3 connections at one time
BEST FOR UKRAINE:ExpressVPN is our top choice. Fast servers, reliable connections and very easy to use. Above average on security and privacy features. There is a 30-day money-back guarantee, so you’ll receive a full refund if unsatisfied.
Read our review of ExpressVPN.
Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS
Panama-headquartered NordVPN has carefully engendered a privacy-focused reputation due to the fact that it has been around in the business for well over a decade. The company operates over 5,000 servers spanning 59 countries, with Ukraine hosting six of them.
NordVPN’s fast speeds make it ideal for streaming. you can select a server specifically for this task, or for other functions, such as double VPN and torrenting. We’ve tested the service with geo-restricted media sites, including US Netflix, HBO, Amazon Prime Video, and ESPN, and it unblocks them with ease.
This provider has you covered on the privacy and security front. NordVPN follows a policy of not storing any user data, so there’s no chance of your personal information ever being exposed. At the same time, it deploys rigorous security standards that include 256-bit encryption, the OpenVPN protocol, an internet kill switch, and DNS leak protection.
Apps are available for Android, iOS, Windows, and MacOS. A basic plan allows for six devices to connect concurrently.
- Operates a network of more than 5,000 servers in 59 countries including 9 in Ukraine
- Enjoy complete anonymity with no logs and cryptocurrency payments
- Personal data is protected as it keeps no logs
- Fast enough speeds to stream HD content without interruptions
- 24/7 live chat can help get you started
- Cumbersome desktop app may cause issues for novice users
BEST BUDGET VPN:NordVPN is a strong all-rounder, unblocks popular streaming sites, has a huge network of servers, fast speeds and plenty of security features. Keeps no user identifyable logs. 30-day money back guarantee.
Read our review of NordVPN.
Money-back guarantee: 45 DAYS
Romania-headquartered CyberGhost offers stringent privacy with a particular focus on unblocking streaming media services. It operates 3,691 servers in 60 countries across the world, with Ukraine included.
This provider can help you pick a server to unblock a specific streaming service, including US Netflix, BBC iPlayer, and Amazon Prime Video. All you have to do is select the “Unblock Streaming” mode within the client and choose your service.
Security and privacy are at a level that is considered top-tier. CyberGhost uses 256-bit encryption, perfect forward secrecy, an internet kill switch, and DNS leak protection.
Its registration in Romania means it’s not required to store any user data. CyberGhost backs that up with an internal policy of not logging any IP addresses. Additional security features include an ad blocker, anti-malware defense, and anti-tracking.
You can access the service on Android, iOS, Windows, or MacOS. At the moment, a single subscription allows for seven devices to connect concurrently.
- Operates a network of more than 3,691 servers in 60 countries with 64 in Ukraine
- Keeps no user activity logs and provides strong encryption to bypass activity detection
- Happily unblocks a host of geo-restricted content
- Easy to use apps make this great for getting started
- Apps can conveniently autoconnect to the fastest servers
- Not suitable for those that need control of advanced features
VALUE CHOICE:CyberGhost has thousands of servers worldwide. Apps are private, secure and easy to use. Operates some fast streaming servers. 45-day money back guarantee.
Read our full user review of CyberGhost.
Money-back guarantee: 7 DAYS
IPVanish is headquartered in the United States, but don’t let that worry you. It’s one of the few VPN providers that operates its entire network of servers independently, which gives it total control over user traffic and privacy. Other VPN providers use a combination of outsourcing to a third party or renting space in server farms. In total, there are more than 1,300 servers in 75 locations worldwide. Options to acquire a Ukrainian IP address are included. This provider works with many streaming media sites, including the notoriously strict BBC iPlayer.
IPVanish is popular with torrenters and Kodi users for a couple of reasons. First, it enables you to download the Android APK directly onto your device. Plus, since Kodi devices often don’t have a keyboard or mouse, users welcome IPVanish’s remote control-friendly interface.
Military-grade encryption protocols ship as standard on all packages. Specifically, IPVanish offers 256-bit encryption, perfect forward secrecy, DNS leak protection, and an internet kill switch. It also adheres to a strict no-logs policy, so there’s no retention of traffic or connection logs at all.
This provider has an extremely generous policy when it comes to concurrent connections on a single subscription. A total of 10 devices are allowed to share the same authentication information, which is significantly higher than the industry standard of five. Another nifty feature is its addition of 24/7 live chat for customer support. It offers apps for Android, iOS, Windows, and MacOS.
- Operates a network of more than 1,300 servers from 75 city locations around the globe
- Keeps no logs whatsoever
- Servers are fast for streaming and downloading
- Connections, communications and traffic remain encrypted and private at all times
- Customer service is limited to an email form on its website
- Look elsewhere if you need to reliably unblock Netflix
GREAT FOR PRIVACY:IPVanish keeps no user logs. Has good streaming speeds and can unblock a good range of streaming services. Secure apps, but not the cheapest option here. 7-day money back guarantee.
Read our full review of IPVanish.
Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS
PrivateVPN is a relatively new entrant but despite its tender years, it delivers a robust product that doesn’t compromise on speed, security, or privacy. One of this provider’s strong suits is its uncanny ability to consistently unblock streaming media sites. Some of the services it manages to access are Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Hulu, HBO, and Amazon Prime Video.
PrivateVPN’s server offering at the moment is relatively tiny with a little over 80 servers in 56 locations but Ukraine is included.
Security and privacy standards are at par with what you would expect from a larger provider. Users can choose between 128- and 256-bit encryption, which comes with perfect forward secrecy, an internet kill switch, and DNS leak protection.
PrivateVPN offers apps for Windows, MacOS, iOS, and Android. A basic plan allows for five devices to connect simultaneously.
- Operates a network spanning 57 countries, can circumvent most internet blocks and restrictions
- Keeps no logs whatsoever
- Faster than many other providers
- Fewer servers to choose from than other providers higher on this list
- Support staff are good, but only operate during European business hours
UP-AND-COMING:PrivateVPN has fast servers and can get around most internet restrictions and geo-blocks. Fast but smallish network with fewer servers to chose from. 30-day money back guarantee.
Read our review of PrivateVPN.
Should I use a free VPN in Ukraine?
We don’t advise our readers to opt for a free VPN for a host of reasons. These services often come with weak encryption, slow speeds, and download caps.
Free VPN providers aren’t registered as charities. They’re in the business of making money; after all, they have to pay for staff salaries, office expenses, and other overheads. So you might be under the illusion that you’re getting a quality product for free; the reality of the situation is that you’re likely going to be the target of their monetization efforts. Some providers will track and mine your data to sell to advertisers while others may just constantly inundate you with invasive advertisements.
Given their subpar service standards, free VPNs are a poor choice for data-intensive tasks like streaming video and playing online games. Plus they often lack the resources to invest in bypassing geo-restriction measure such as those put in place by streaming services and financial institutions.
See also: Best VPN for Russia
Why do I need to use a VPN in Ukraine?
Ukraine’s internet environment is reaching a point of authoritarianism and widespread government censorship.
Internet freedoms in the country rapidly plummeted last year as the government authorized the arrest of online bloggers and gave its blessings for the removal of social media apps and politically charged content. It’s clear that the restrictive environment necessitates the use of a VPN to surf the web safely and securely.
Indeed, internet advocacy body Freedom House notes that internet freedoms have declined in Ukraine since 2016 onwards after the government ordered widespread censorship of Russian online platforms and the mysterious murder of independent online journalist Pavel Sheremet.
President Petro Poroshenko personally ordered the blockage of several popular online platforms, including local favorite VKontakte, on the premise that they “posed a threat to national security.” Authorities also constantly scanned websites that were deemed to be anti-Ukrainian, and ordered local internet service providers to stymie all access to them.
The government’s hardline narrative also resulted in the arrest of several social media users, who were thought to be espousing anti-nationalist ideals. Some users were sentenced to up to five years in jail, while the harshest sentence came down on a blogger in the Luhansk People’s Republic, who was ordered to be incarcerated for 14 years.
The death of journalist Pavel Sheremet was deemed to be a retaliatory attack following his extensive coverage of the conflict in Ukraine at the time. Other journalists reporting from the conflict zone were targeted by hackers with some having their personal details spilled all over the internet.
Despite these significant challenges and roadblocks, Freedom House maintains that Ukrainian civil society has an important presence online and the government needs to safeguard internet freedoms as a fundamental human right.
Can I safely torrent files in Ukraine?
Ukraine has a sordid reputation for allowing sites that stream pirated content to set up shop there, as well as facilitating the operations of peer-to-peer torrenting sites. However, this might be coming to an end very soon.
The United States, one of Ukraine’s largest donors and an important trading partner for the former Soviet republic, has come down harshly on the country saying it doesn’t do enough to protect the interests of copyright holders. The International Intellectual Property Alliance (IIPA) is lobbying the US government to remove Ukraine from its list of countries that enjoy preferential trade access.
The IIPA says that “weak digital enforcement [in Ukraine] has resulted in an exponential increase in the number of illegal peer-to-peer hosting sites,” and that “some internet pirates have purposefully moved their servers and operations to Ukraine to take advantage of the current lawless situation.” The body notes that authorities are unwilling to enforce takedown requests, even when ordered by courts to do so. As a result, it believes the United States needs to take a more proactive role when it comes to forcing the government’s hand.
As a result, it’s possible that using torrents in Ukraine might soon become very difficult and/or illegal. For peace of mind, it’s best to use a VPN so that your location can remain hidden. For more on this topic, read our list of the best VPNs for torrenting.
DISCLAIMER: Comparitech does not encourage using a VPN to stream content illegally. Please consult local laws before deciding to embark on this route. If you have any questions, then it’s best to talk to a lawyer in your country of residence.
Tips for using a VPN in Ukraine
Before proceeding further, we first encourage you to make a firm decision on a provider that works best for you. Useful points of reference are the mini-reviews we’ve provided in this article as well as the detailed user reviews at the end of each one.
Once you’ve evaluated the pros and cons and made a decision, then all you need to do is to sign up with your credit card information. Some providers will also accept PayPal or Bitcoin, but it’s best to ask customer support directly. Once the payment has been processed, you will receive an email with login information directly from the VPN provider. Proceed to download the relevant apps for your device directly from the app store or the provider’s website. Don’t trust any third-party hosting platforms.
Accessing Netflix libraries in Ukraine
If you’re visiting Ukraine or living there for an extended period, you’ll likely want to log into your Netflix account. However, without a VPN, you’ll only be able to view the Netflix Ukraine library. It doesn’t matter if you registered or paid for the service in Canada or the United States; Netflix will check your current IP address and simply show you the content it deems relevant. If you want to regain access to the American Netflix library, then you’ll have to download and log in to a compatible VPN first, connect to a server in the US, and then try to access your favorite shows.
Why is that the case you might wonder? That’s because Netflix has to protect the copyright laws it has agreed to with major producers. If the company is found to be promoting content across the world, then it will be liable to pay millions of dollars in punitive damages. Not all VPNs work with Netflix however; if you try to log in from a non-compatible one then you’ll probably be on the receiving end of a proxy error message. We’ve highlighted the ones that do work in each of the mini-reviews above. If you have any issues, it’s always a good idea to ask customer support.
Watching Ukrainian television and accessing banking services when abroad
There’s a large Ukrainian diaspora living outside the country and many of them are interested in staying in touch with local programming from back home, watching the Ukrainian Premier League, or accessing online banking services such as PrivatBank and OschadBank. Obtaining a Ukrainian IP address is an essential requirement for this.
Ukrainian television channels, such as STB, 5 Kanal, TVi, Mega, and 2+2 operate both free-to-stream and premium (paid) packages. Some channels will accept IP addresses from any part of the world, while others will require a local one from Ukraine along with a registered account.
Banking and financial institutions won’t necessarily geo-restrict services, but network security could go into overdrive if they see a volume of requests from an unknown IP address. It’s possible that they might assume a hacking or defrauding attempt, so it’s generally a prudent practice to always try to log in with an IP address from back home to avoid raising any red flags.
- 1 The best VPNs for Ukraine
- 2 1. ExpressVPN
- 3 2. NordVPN
- 4 3. CyberGhost
- 5 4. IPVanish
- 6 5. PrivateVPN
- 7 Should I use a free VPN in Ukraine?
- 8 Why do I need to use a VPN in Ukraine?
- 9 Can I safely torrent files in Ukraine?
- 10 Tips for using a VPN in Ukraine