free vpn for netflix

Are you frustrated with being locked out of your favorite Netflix shows while overseas? The content you access on Netflix can vary greatly, leaving you stranded without your preferred entertainment. A Virtual Private Network (VPN) is your ticket back to your entire Netflix library, but finding a reliable one is not a walk in the park.

Many people have encountered the notorious “Streaming error” message when using ineffective free VPNs, leading to a dead-end in the quest for unrestricted viewing.

The following Netflix proxy error is common with free VPNs:

Whoops, something went wrong. Streaming error. You seem to be using an unblocker or proxy. Please turn off any of these services and try again.

Free VPNs for Netflix often need to improve, offering slow connections, limited server choices, and questionable privacy policies, which can diminish your streaming experience.

At Comparitech, we understand the value of seamless, secure, and unrestricted streaming. We’ve rigorously tested and analyzed many VPN services, filtering out the mediocre to present you with top-notch, reliable VPN solutions that guarantee uninterrupted access to your Netflix favorites.

In this article, we’ve compiled a list of VPNs offering money-back guarantees, free trials, or very low monthly rates. More details are below, but here’s a glance at that list.

VPNs for Netflix that offer free trials, money-back guarantees, or very low monthly rates:

  1. NordVPN: Our top VPN pick for Netflix. An extremely fast VPN option with a large network of secure servers that can securely access plenty of popular streaming sites. 30-day money-back guarantee,
    TIP In our testing we found that the cheapest NordVPN plan (Standard) works perfectly.
  2. Surfshark: A budget option with a 30-day money-back guarantee. Works well with Netflix and allows an unlimited number of simultaneous connections.
  3. ExpressVPN: Offers a no-fuss 30-day money-back guarantee on a service that’s fast, secure, and great for securely accessing streaming sites, including Netflix.
  4. CyberGhost: Provides blazing-fast speeds. Works with many streaming platforms, including Netflix. 45-day money-back guarantee.
  5. IPVanish: Ultra-fast, no-logs VPN with a 30-day money-back guarantee and a short free trial for mobile users. Can access multiple Netflix libraries and doesn’t have a connection limit.
  6. PrivateVPN: No issues securely accessing Netflix. Provides a fast, secure service for just a few bucks per month.

WANT TO TRY THE TOP VPN RISK FREE?

NordVPN is offering a fully-featured risk-free 30-day trial if you sign up at this page. You can use the VPN rated #1 for Netflix with no restrictions for a monthgreat if you want to keep watching the same shows you would back home during a vacation abroad.

There are no hidden termsjust contact support within 30 days if you decide NordVPN isn't right for you and you'll get a full refund. Start your NordVPN trial here.

Steps to get a free VPN for Netflix

From our experience, here’s how to get a free VPN for Netflix:

  1. Sign up with your chosen provider. We recommend NordVPN, but Surfshark and ExpressVPN are excellent alternate options.
  2. Download the appropriate app for your device.
  3. Connect to a server in your home country. For example, for Netflix US, select a US server, or for Netflix UK, choose a UK server.
  4. Go to the Netflix website. You will automatically be directed to the Home page for the region your VPN server is in.
  5. Select the show or movie you want to watch and enjoy!
  6. If you don’t want to keep the VPN, cancel before the end of the money-back guarantee, smug in the knowledge you have had a period of free access!

Best free trial or low-cost VPNs for Netflix – Our hands-on review

We’ve tested and compared the most important features for the top VPNs here. Prefer to read the in-depth reviews? Start with NordVPN – our #1 choice for Netflix.

No valueNordVPNSurfsharkExpressVPNCyberGhostIPVanishPrivateVPN
WebsiteNordVPN.comSurfshark.comExpressVPN.comCyberghost.comIPVanish.comPrivateVPN.com
Ranking for Netflix:123456
Unblocks Netflix US
Money-back guarantee30-days30-days30-days45-days30-days30-days
Server countries1111001051005363
Total number of servers6,000+3,200Undisclosed11,000+2,200+200+
Avg Speed (Mbps)100+ Mbps100+ Mbps100+ Mbps100+ Mbps100+ Mbps39 Mbps
Best deal (per month)$3.09
Up to 74% off + 3 months FREE
$2.19
Save 86% on a 2 year Starter plan + 3 months free
$6.67
SAVE: 49% + 3 months free
$2.19
SAVE 83% on the 2 year plan + 2 months free!
$2.99
SAVE 76% on the 2 yr plan
$2.00
Save 85% on a one year plan + 24-months free

Best free trial or low-cost VPNs for Netflix

To make our list, VPNs have to meet the following criteria in the real-world:

  • Reliably works with Netflix
  • Offers a free trial, money-back guarantee, or very low monthly rates
  • Has fast, reliable connections
  • Provides strong security
  • Keeps no logs
  • Offers prompt and knowledgeable customer support

Here are our best VPNs for watching Netflix for free or on a budget:

1. NordVPN

NordVPN May 2024 works with NetflixTested May 2024

Apps Available:

  • PC
  • Mac
  • IOS
  • Android
  • Linux
  • Background FireTV

Website:  www.NordVPN.com

Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS

NordVPN is our number one choice. It works reliably with Netflix and allows you to use almost any server in its vast network (currently more than 5,400 servers in 60+ countries). Note that while it can securely access several local catalogs, including US, UK, Australia, Canada, Netherlands, and Italy, it will redirect to the US Netflix library in other cases.

NordVPN pegged some great speeds in our latest round of tests and can handle streaming HD video with no issues. It comes with tight security, including strong encryption, leak protection, a kill switch, and perfect forward secrecy, as well as additional features like automatic wifi protection, which is great for on-the-go streaming. NordVPN keeps no logs.

Desktop clients are available for Windows, macOS, and Linux, and apps for iOS and Android can be found in their respective app stores. Each plan allows for six simultaneous connections.

Pros:

  • Works with Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, and more
  • Offers a free trial and a low monthly rate
  • Extremely high speeds
  • Strong encryption and additional security features
  • Maintains no logs
  • 30-day money-back guarantee

Cons:

  • Connecting to some servers can be a bit slow

Our score:

4.5 out of 5

BEST VPN FOR NETFLIX:NordVPN is our top choice. Fast speeds make it ideal for streaming. It offers low monthly rates and a risk-free 30-day money-back guarantee.

Check out our in-depth NordVPN review.

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2. Surfshark

Surfshark works with NetflixTested May 2024

Apps Available:

  • PC
  • Mac
  • IOS
  • Android
  • Linux

Website:  www.Surfshark.com

Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS

Surfshark is great for accessing a variety of Netflix libraries securely, including US, UK, France, India, Netherlands, and more. Like NordVPN, if you connect to a server in a region for which the library that isn’t supported, you’ll automatically be redirected to US Netflix. In other words, US residents traveling elsewhere in the world can use the closest server to securely access their usual library, rather than relying on servers back home.

Surfshark offers low prices and is one of the few decent VPN providers that allows an unlimited number of devices to be connected at one time. Speeds are fast enough for streaming so you can expect a stress-free experience.

Security and privacy features are up to par, and include strong encryption, a kill switch, leak protection, and a true zero-logs policy. Apps are available for Windows, MacOS, iOS, and Android.

Pros:

  • Every server tested worked with Netflix
  • Reliable servers in 100+ countries
  • Privacy-first provider
  • Uses strong encryption
  • Allows an unlimited number of simultaneous connections

Cons:

  • Records some slower speeds

Our score:

4.5 out of 5

BEST BUDGET VPN:Surfshark enables you to stream Netflix on as many devices as you like at a low monthly rate. Plans come with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Delve into our full Surfshark review.

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3. ExpressVPN

ExpressVPN works with NetflixTested May 2024

Apps Available:

  • PC
  • Mac
  • IOS
  • Android
  • Linux

Website:  www.ExpressVPN.com

Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS

ExpressVPN offers a no-fuss 30-day money-back guarantee, making it a great choice for streaming Netflix for free for a short period. It works with multiple Netflix libraries, including Netflix US, UK, Australia, Canada, Japan, and France, as well as many other streaming sites, such as BBC iPlayer and Hulu. All servers are optimized for speed, making streaming a breeze.

More than 3,000 servers are available in 94 countries. Not all servers can securely access Netflix, so you may have to contact customer support to find out which one to use. Knowledgeable representatives are available around the clock to help, so this should only take a minute or two.

This provider offers military-grade encryption, a kill switch, leak protection, and perfect forward secrecy. It doesn’t log any personally identifiable information.

Apps are available for MacOS, Windows, Linux, Android, and iOS. You can configure the VPN to certain routers, and ExpressVPN even provides its own custom firmware. Connect up to five devices at a time, with a router counting as just one.

Pros:

  • Works with multiple Netflix libraries
  • 30-day money-back guarantee
  • Fast speeds for streaming
  • Strong security suite
  • Logs no personal information

Cons:

  • The monthly rate is slightly higher than some rivals
  • Few advanced configuration options

Our score:

4.5 out of 5

TRY IT FREE:ExpressVPN works great with Netflix. You can enjoy a month of its fast, secure service for free by taking advantage of the 30-day money-back guarantee. It offers a seamless viewing experience for many popular streaming sites, so you may just want to keep it.

Read our full review of ExpressVPN.

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4. CyberGhost

CyberGhost works with NetflixTested May 2024

Apps Available:

  • PC
  • Mac
  • IOS
  • Android
  • Linux

Website:  www.Cyberghost.com

Money-back guarantee: 45 DAYS

CyberGhost is an excellent beginner-friendly option, and its apps are designed with a clear focus on users looking to stream. Servers are labeled according to which services they work with, so there’s rarely a need to contact customer support for help. CyberGhost can securely access multiple libraries, including UK, US, France, Germany, and Italy. What’s more, it performed well in our latest speed tests.

Just because it’s inexpensive doesn’t mean it scrimps on its service. CyberGhost has excellent security, including 256-bit encryption, a kill switch on all platforms, and leak protection. It keeps no logs whatsoever.

CyberGhost apps are available for Windows, macOS, iOS, Linux, and Android, and you can connect up to seven devices at a time. Note that CyberGhost does offer free browser extensions, but these don’t work with Netflix.

Pros:

  • Works well with Netflix
  • Excellent speeds
  • Performs well on the security front
  • Keep no logs of user data
  • Generous 45-day money-back guarantee

Cons:

  • Apps aren’t as user-friendly as they were
  • Few advanced features

Our score:

4.5 out of 5

IDEAL FOR STREAMING:CyberGhost has fast speeds and apps tailored for streaming, making this low-cost provider worth considering. Plans come with a 45-day money-back guarantee.

Read our full CyberGhost review.

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5. IPVanish

Apps Available:

  • PC
  • Mac
  • IOS
  • Android
  • Linux

Website:  www.IPVanish.com

Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS

IPVanish used to have difficulty accessing streaming platforms, but we’re pleased to announce that’s no longer the case. So long as you use a server in a major city, you should be able to access all of your favorite apps (including Netflix) from just about anywhere. This service is fast enough to watch live 4K video with no noticeable buffering, plus it allows you to secure as many devices as you like from a single account. In the unlikely event that you run into difficulty, support staff are only ever a message away via live chat.

This VPN doesn’t disappoint on security either. By default, it uses uncrackable encryption, DNS and IPv6 leak protection, and a kill switch to keep your activities private at all times. Just recently, it introduced split tunneling functionality and the ability to block ads and trackers automatically. There is also a data obfuscation feature to help you use services that normally block VPN traffic (though this only works with the OpenVPN protocol at the time of writing). IPVanish doesn’t log any details of your activities and has been independently audited for your peace of mind.

IPVanish works with Android, iOS, Windows, Linux, and MacOS devices. If you’d prefer, it can be manually installed on most popular types of router. Choose a long-term subscription to get a 30-day money-back guarantee or sign up using one of the mobile apps for a seven-day trial.

Pros:

  • Speedy no-logs provider
  • Can access multiple Netflix catalogs
  • Blocks ads
  • Has no connection limit

Cons:

  • May take a few tries to find the server that works with your preferred Netflix library
  • Based in the US

Our score:

4 out of 5

WATCH SAFELY ANYWHERE:IPVanish is a beginner-friendly VPN with a proven no-logs policy and the ability to access Netflix abroad. Boasts exceptional performance, a 30-day money-back guarantee on annual and two-year plans, and a week-long trial for mobile users.

Check out our complete IPVanish review.

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6. PrivateVPN

PrivateVPN works with NetflixTested May 2024

Apps Available:

  • PC
  • Mac
  • IOS
  • Android
  • Linux

Website:  www.PrivateVPN.com

Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS

PrivateVPN is a small provider that still manages to hold its own, having made a name for itself in the industry. Even though it only operates around 200 servers, it can help you securely access high-profile platforms like Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, and BBC iPlayer. Some of the Netflix libraries it works with are UK, US, Australia, Japan, Spain, and Germany. Fast speeds and reliable connections make for worry-free streaming.

PrivateVPN scores well when it comes to security and privacy too. It uses 256-bit encryption, includes a kill switch in the Windows app, and maintains a no-logs policy. Apps can be downloaded for Windows, MacOS, iOS, and Android.

Pros:

  • Ideal for securely accessing your usual services abroad
  • Great speeds
  • Secure and private
  • Allows 10 simultaneous connections

Cons:

  • Small server network
  • Doesn’t offer 24/7 live chat

Our score:

4.5 out of 5

PRIVACY FIRST:PrivateVPN works with lots of streaming services and offers competitive monthly rates. A 30-day money-back guarantee helps, too.

Read our in-depth review of PrivateVPN.

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What is so bad about free VPNs for Netflix?

We mentioned that truly free VPNs are not a good choice for Netflix, and here we’ll explain more about why this is the case. Free VPNs are run on a tiny budget but are still designed to make money. The lack of resources means that there is little chance a free VPN can reliably access any Netflix library. The lack of funds also means you’ll have to endure a frustratingly slow, unreliable connection, which makes free VPNs highly unsuitable for streaming.

You might wonder how these VPNs make money if they don’t charge you. Some inject ads into the sites you visit, while others track your online activity and sell the gathered data to third parties. Aside from the inherent privacy issues, free VPNs typically won’t give you the security you expect from a VPN. Many don’t encrypt your data and some VPN apps have been found to carry malware or sell your bandwidth.

While you’ll find many free VPNs claiming to work with Netflix, there’s usually a lot more to consider. With so many reputable providers offering free trials, money-back guarantees, or super-low monthly rates, it’s not worth wasting your time with subpar services.

Troubleshooting

Whichever VPN provider you end up going with, the steps to get started are generally the same.

Video: How to watch Netflix with a VPN

If you get an error while attempting to watch a show, there could be several reasons for this. The most common one is that your VPN simply can’t access that region for Netflix. Although some VPNs work with multiple regions, we are yet to come across one can securely access them all Most VPNs focus on the most popular libraries, such Netflix US and Netflix UK.

Another possible reason for an error is that you are connected to a server that doesn’t work with Netflix. For either of these issues, you can try contacting your VPN provider’s customer support team for guidance. Providers of Netflix VPNs monitor which servers are working with Netflix, so should be able to help you out quickly.

Read more on the Netflix proxy error

Is unblocking Netflix with a free VPN legal?

Unblocking Netflix with a free VPN is not illegal in most countries. While using a VPN to access geo-blocked content on Netflix is against the platform’s terms and conditions, it is not considered a criminal offense in most jurisdictions. However, some countries have strict laws against VPN usage, so it’s essential to check the regulations in your local area.

Can I use a free proxy to securely access Netflix?

In the past, smart DNS proxies, many of which can be found for free, have been used to access Netflix. A smart DNS proxy server monitors DNS requests (domain name lookups) and routes traffic for Netflix requests through a special server.

However, Netflix has caught on to smart DNS proxies, and they will rarely work with the streaming service. One that does work reliably is the ExpressVPN MediaStreamer that comes with every ExpressVPN plan.

Note that even if you find a smart DNS proxy that works with Netflix, these come with other issues. First, most don’t encrypt your traffic, and those that do will only encrypt your browser traffic, so there’s no protection for other apps on your device. Additionally, many free proxies suffer from similar disadvantages to free VPNs, such as a small number of locations to choose from and poor privacy policies.

Does a free VPN impact the streaming speed?

Yes, free VPNs are almost always significantly slower than quality paid VPN services. That’s because many free VPNs engage in bandwidth throttling and have restrictive data limits. Of course, it doesn’t help that the majority of free VPNs offer very few servers. With so many users on each server, the heavy load results in poor performance. All of this combined means that free VPNs have a negative impact on streaming in the form of low-resolution, lag-filled streams.

What are the risks of using a free VPN on a Smart TV?

Using a free VPN on your smart TV can expose you to significant risks. Firstly, these VPNs may not provide the robust security measures needed to protect you from cyber threats like hacking or malware. Moreover, they often collect and potentially sell your data, which could lead to your personal information and viewing habits falling into the hands of advertisers or other third parties.

When it comes to streaming, free VPNs can be a source of frustration. They often impose data limits and slower speeds, leading to irritating buffering and diminished video quality. Additionally, they offer a limited number of server locations, potentially preventing you from accessing all the shows and movies you desire, and causing the ones you can access to load slowly due to server congestion.

Lastly, using a VPN to watch shows from other countries could get you in trouble with streaming services like Netflix, potentially leading to your account being blocked.

In short, while a free VPN might seem like a good money-saving trick, it could cost you in terms of security, privacy, and streaming quality. Paying for a reputable VPN service is often worth it for the better protection and performance.

What’s the difference between a free VPN and a paid VPN?

The main difference between a free VPN and a paid VPN is security. Paid VPNs offer more secure protocols, better encryption, and more reliable access to global servers than their free counterparts. In addition, most paid VPN providers have additional features like ad-blocking, malware protection, anti-tracking, and no-logging policies that free VPNs don’t provide.