Unfortunately, many online sports betting sites are geo-locked and accounts cannot be created or accessed from within certain countries or states. For example, Canadian-based Bovada won’t accept players from several states, including New York and Nevada. And the UK’s Betfair won’t accept bets from Canadians. This can cause frustration for travelers who find themselves suddenly unable to place bets.
Thankfully, a Virtual Private Network (VPN) can help. A VPN encrypts all of your website traffic and routes it through an intermediary server. The best part is that you can choose the server location such that you can access geo-locked content. Your device’s IP address (and actual location) will be masked and replaced with one from the country of your choice.
Once connected to a VPN you should be able to access sites as normal. Note that not all VPNs are compatible with all sports betting, gambling and fantasy sports sites. We’ve considered this when ranking the VPN providers above. Before we get into the details of how to do this and which VPNs to use be sure to check you are not flouting any local or national laws by accessing gambling sites.
It’s important to note the difference between accessing a geo-blocked but legal site and a banned site or one that facilitates illegal gambling activity. For example, we implore you not to use a VPN to access gambling sites in countries such as the UAE where gambling is illegal and could land you in serious trouble with the authorities.
Important: Some countries have completely banned online casinos and gambling while others don’t have specific legislation regarding the issue. We do not encourage or condone illegal activities or the use of a VPN to spoof geographic locations to break local laws. It’s important to do your research and investigate the online gambling laws within your country and state before using a VPN to access betting or gambling websites. If you are unsure of the laws in the state or country you are in we suggest you don’t take the risk of betting online.
How to securely access betting sites from anywhere
Once you have checked you are not flouting any local or national legislation by betting, follow these steps to access your usual home betting services from anywhere.
Here’s how to spoof your location with a VPN to access online gambling sites abroad:
- Select a suitable VPN from the list above. Our preferred option is NordVPN.
- Next clear your cookies
- Now open up your VPN app
- Select a VPN server location from your home country (where you usually access the betting site)
- Login into the sports betting or online gaming site and you should be able to play as usual
- If you hit any issues contact the VPNs customer support. Changing VPN protocol or other settings will often solve the problem
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Not all VPN providers offer the same service and some are definitely better than others. Plus, some are more suitable for certain applications than their competitors. There are a lot of VPNs to choose from, so we’ve narrowed down the list to help you choose the best VPN for accessing betting websites abroad in 2018. Our choices for the top picks are based on the following criteria:
- Has strong security
- Keeps no logs
- Provides wifi protection
- Offers a fast and reliable service
- Provides timely and knowledgeable customer support
If you don’t have time to get stuck into all the details, we’ve summarized our recommended VPNs below.
Best VPNs for online betting and gambling:
- NordVPN Best VPN for online gaming and betting sites! Very fast, with lots of server choice. Includes a wide range of security features and a 30-day money-back guarantee.
- Surfshark Look no further for the best budget VPN. Fast servers, top-notch security, and no connection limits whatsoever.
- ExpressVPN A solid general-purpose VPN that boasts high speeds and strong privacy protections.
- CyberGhost Easy to use and won’t let you down for speed and security.
- IPVanish Fast and reliable service with good secure servers and apps.
- PrivateVPN Up-and-coming service with impressive speeds, good privacy, and security features.
- AtlasVPN High-speed servers in around 30 countries. Good set of security features and absolutely no connection or bandwidth limits.
Best VPNs for gambling
Now, let’s take a closer look at our top VPNs:
Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS
NordVPN is our top pick, thanks to its heavy focus on privacy and online security. It keeps absolutely no logs at all, not even bandwidth data, so no gambling activities can be tied to a user. It uses 256-bit AES encryption with perfect forward secrecy and comes with DNS leak protection, automatic wifi protection (for Android), and an internet kill switch.
Using this service, you can choose from more than 5,000 servers in 60 countries. With servers optimized for speed, and the ability to securely access sites like US Netflix, Hulu, HBO, BBC iPlayer, and Amazon Prime Video, NordVPN is ideal for streaming.
Live chat support means you can get prompt answers to any queries you have. A basic plan allows you to connect up to six devices at a time, which is just above the industry standard of five.
Apps are available for Windows, Linux, MacOS, iOS, and Android.
- Top-tier encryption standards with DNS leak protection
- Automatic wifi protection
- Fast enough for online poker and HD streaming
- Works with a wide range of geo-locked sites
- 24/7 live chat support on offer
- Desktop app can take some getting used to
BEST VPN FOR GAMBLING SITES ABROAD:NordVPN is the best choice. It’s security-conscious, faster than any other VPN on the market, and great for betting abroad. What’s more, it comes with a risk-free 30-day money-back guarantee.
Read our review of NordVPN.
Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS
Surfshark prioritizes your security, using 256-bit encryption, a kill switch (in all versions), and protection against DNS, IPv6, and WebRTC leaks to keep your traffic safe from prying eyes. Better still, this service doesn’t keep any traffic logs so once you’re connected, you’re almost completely anonymous.
This VPN has 3,200 or so servers across 60+ countries and provides top-tier speeds. Additionally, it works well with major services like Netflix, BBC iPlayer, and Amazon Prime Video, so you shouldn’t have any issues using gambling sites abroad. If you experience any problems, you can reach customer support in seconds thanks to Surfshark’s 24/7 live chat.
Apps are available for Android, Windows, MacOS, iOS, and Linux.
- High speed connections
- Works with all kinds of gambling sites
- Strong focus on security
- No connection limits
- Keeps no logs
- Apps devote a lot of space to paid extras
Read our full review of Surfshark here.
BEST BUDGET OPTION:Surfshark is highly affordable, with decent speds, great everyday potential, and an unlimited number of connections. 30-day money-back guarantee.
Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS
ExpressVPN first and foremost offers top-notch security. Based in the British Virgin Islands, this provider is far away from the reaches of mass government surveillance found in many parts of North America and Europe. It boasts strong 256-bit AES encryption with perfect forward secrecy. An internet kill switch and DNS protection ensure that your real IP is even more secure.
Plus, this provider offers a true no-logs policy and you don’t even need to hand over any Personally Identifiable Information (PII) to sign up. This means you’ll be able to enjoy betting websites without worrying about any monitoring or tracking whatsoever. In fact, This provider is a great all-rounder and can securely access streaming sites like Netflix and Hulu.
When it comes to service, ExpressVPN has a strong network of over 3,000 servers in 94 countries, so you’ll have plenty of choices. What’s more, it pegs fast speeds and offers a reliable, uninterrupted connection, so you never have to worry about missing the betting cutoff. If you need to learn more about the service or get some help with setup or troubleshooting, the ExpressVPN customer support team offers highly competent support via live chat or email.
Apps are available for Windows, MacOS, iOS, Android, Linux, and some wifi routers.
- Top-class app security and internet traffic encryption
- Complete online privacy – no logs of personal data kept
- Access geo-restricted content from anywhere
- Blazing-fast servers are ideal for surfing, streaming, and downloading
- Not as cheap as some other services
- Could offer more control over advanced functionality
FLEXIBLE VPN:ExpressVPN can handle just about anything. It provides high speeds, excellent security, and access to servers all over the world, not to mention a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Read our in-depth review of ExpressVPN.
Money-back guarantee: 45 DAYS
CyberGhost is based in Romania and offers users a high level of security and privacy. Military grade 256-bit encryption and perfect forward secrecy help ensure that your online activities remain private at all times. An internet kill switch and DNS leak protection provide additional backup.
This provider has a clean bill when it comes to logs and does not store any traffic data or connection logs that can be tied to an individual user. If you’re prone to using the same wifi hotspot to access betting sites, you can enable settings such that specific networks will be remembered and automatically protected.
CyberGhost provides access to more than 7,000 servers in 90+ countries. It offers fast connection speeds and enables you to securely access a variety of betting sites, plus popular streaming services like US Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Amazon Prime, and Hulu.
In case of questions or issues, you have access to 24/7 live chat support. A basic plan allows up to seven simultaneous connections.
Apps are available for Windows, MacOS, iOS, Linux, and Android.
- Provides additional protection for wifi users
- A solid choice for gambling
- Fast, streaming-optimized servers
- Doesn’t work in China or UAE
- May not be customizable enouygh for advanced users
EASY TO USE:CyberGhost is great for beginners. Great privacy, zero logs and DNS leak protection. Good at accessing betting sites abroad. 45-day money back guarantee.
Read our review of CyberGhost.
Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS
IPVanish boasts excellent security, using 256-bit encryption and perfect forward secrecy to keep your connection secure. A built-in kill switch adds an extra layer of protection by stopping all data transfer should the VPN connection drop. It provides DNS leak protection and doesn’t monitor any browsing activity or keep connection logs. Notably, you can connect as many devices as you like.
This VPN offers some of the fastest speeds on the market, and access to more than 1,000 servers in around 60 countries. As well as helping you securely access betting sites as you travel, IPVanish is a great option for streaming Netflix, Hulu, and similar services. Customer support is reliable and knowledgeable, and you can get in touch day or night via live chat.
Apps are available for Windows, MacOS, iOS, and Android.
- Keeps no logs whatsoever
- Operates in over 60 countries
- Impressive server speeds
- Strong security and privacy features
- Apps don’t work in China
NO CONNECTION LIMIT:IPVanish is great for families that need multiple connections. Easy to use. Preferred by users with high standards of privacy and security. Not as many server locations as some of its rivals. 30-day money-back guarantee.
Read our review of IPVanish.
Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS
PrivateVPN is a smaller provider than the others on the list. However, it lives up to its name and offers plenty of privacy and security features. With a strict no-logging policy, you don’t have to worry about any of your internet activity being tracked. It uses 256-bit encryption in addition to perfect forward secrecy, a kill switch, and DNS leak protection. Not only that, but as this VPN is its own ISP, there’s virtually no chance of outside interference.
One of the best things about PrivateVPN is its fast connection speeds, which are crucial if you want to be truly on your betting game. It also makes the service a solid option for streaming, as does its ability to securely access US Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Hulu, and more.
Live chat support means your questions will be answered promptly, and you’ll have access to remote support for setup and troubleshooting. A PrivateVPN plan will enable up to 10 simultaneous connections.
Apps are available for Windows, MacOS, iOS, and Android.
- Swedish based provider with a strict no-logs policy
- No issues accessing the most popular betting sites
- Strong security and privacy protection features
- Small number of servers to choose from
- Live chat isn’t available 24/7
GREAT SPEEDS:PrivateVPN is consistently reliable. Connection speeds were surprisingly good at this end of the market. Could do with having more servers and lacks 24/7 support. 30-day money back guarantee.
Read our review of PrivateVPN.
Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS
Atlas VPN has a smaller network than some of its rivals, with around 750 servers in 30+ countries. However, it helps make up for it by removing connection limits altogether. Not only that, but this provider offers exceptionally high speeds, making it a strong choice for gambling, streaming, torrenting, or gaming.
It’s a good idea to prioritize security whenever money is on the line. Luckily, Atlas VPN includes features like 256-bit encryption, a kill switch, protection against DNS and IPv6 leaks, and a no-logs policy. There’s also 24/7 support via live chat just in case you run into any issues.
Atlas VPN has apps for iOS, Android, Windows, and MacOS.
- Solid performance
- Good range of security tools
- 24/7 live chat
- No Linux or router support
IMPRESSIVE SPEEDS: Atlas VPN is an extremely fast and versatile service that’s more than capable of helping you gamble securely. In fact, it can even protect every device you own simultaneously. All plans include a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Read our full Atlas VPN review.
Methodology: Finding the best VPNs for gambling safely
It’s important that you choose the right VPN for gambling. After all, if it’s too slow, you could find yourself kicked from games. If it’s not secure enough, there’s really no point in using it. Here are the key areas we focused on when choosing the best VPNs for gambling:
- Server choice: Some countries (and even some US states) don’t normally allow gambling. That’s why we looked for providers with lots of different server locations, ideally with some in betting-friendly states like Nevada or New York.
- Speed and reliabilty: Slow speeds can see you disconnecting randomly, which could cause you to lose money. To prevent this, we decided to only recommend VPNs that performed well in our latest speed testing. We also looked for VPNs that worked with a variety of betting sites, including Bet365, Betfair, and DraftKings.
- Privacy offering: To keep your activities hidden from snoopers, we require our top VPNs to offer 256-bit encryption, leak protection, a kill switch, and a no-logs policy. We strongly prefer services with strong cloaking abilities too, since these can help you access your usual betting sites while traveling abroad.
- Ease of use: The simpler a VPN is, the better. We prioritize providers with 24/7 live chat, no connection limits, task-specific servers, and really, any features that make the VPN more welcoming to newcomers.
This is actually one small part of our testing. To find out more, read our full explanation of how we test VPNs.
Laws and regulations for accessing betting websites abroad
As briefly mentioned earlier, different countries have varying laws surrounding online casinos and gambling. Some, like Afghanistan and Romania, have banned it completely and governments instruct ISPs to block access to gambling websites. Others, such as Lithuania and Switzerland, require gambling websites to be licensed or approved before they can offer services in the respective countries.
Some governments have no clear legislation regarding the topic and it often becomes a ‘legal gray area.’ For example, in Canada, it appears to be legal for players to place bets with offshore operators, but the legality of those operators accepting the bets is brought into question. Then you have the US where it is illegal to accept online sports bets, but not illegal to place them.
So you have two levels, regional restrictions and potentially, restrictions put in place by the betting sites themselves. At the end of the day, you don’t want to land yourself in trouble with the law. Plus, you want to make sure any deposits you make and winnings you accrue are 100% legitimate so that they’re not confiscated.
In some cases, you’ll find it’s okay to access sites through a VPN if you’re a resident of the country in which they’re allowed, for example, while traveling. Or, in the case of Bovada, you may not even need a VPN to access your account (although it’s recommended you use one anyway):
The Bovada website may deliver an error message based on your location, but this also includes the following note:
“If you already have a Bovada account and are visiting us while travelling, you can close this window, sign in and continue playing.”
However, if you reside in a country where a site is blocked completely, it’s probably not a good idea to use a VPN to circumvent these laws. Indeed the same provider outlines in its terms of service that use of a VPN to hide the identification of the users’ location could result in termination of the account. This entails forfeiting account balances including deposits and winnings.
So, aside from potentially having to deal with law enforcement, you risk having your account closed and losing any money in it. That would be an even worse feeling than losing a bet!
On the other hand, Bet365’s terms and conditions include the following:
“Internet gambling may be illegal in the jurisdiction in which you are located. If so, you are not authorised to use your payment card to complete the transaction. However, any bets/wagers accepted from such jurisdictions will stand – win or lose.”
This is more positive, but while VPN usage isn’t mentioned per se, it’s possible that location tampering could be against the rules.
As such, it’s always a good idea to check with individual websites before investing any money (in a VPN or placing bets). In some cases, they will simply tell you it’s flat out not allowed, whereas others may okay with it. These rules may not be easy to find within the vast amount of fine print on each site, but contacting customer support should get you the answers you need.
Here at Comparitech, we aim to create well-researched articles however, nothing in this article should be considered legal advice. We always recommend checking the laws of your local country before placing any bets online.
Security and privacy aspects of using a VPN
Aside from unblocking sites, a VPN will help to protect your privacy. Because the gambling and betting industries are so tightly controlled, it could be more likely that your internet activity is being monitored in some way. With a VPN, all data is encrypted and your Internet Service Provider will be unable to snoop on your online activity.
What’s more, if you’re using wifi while traveling, a VPN can secure the connection so you don’t have to worry about threats from malicious hackers. This is especially important if you’re planning on accessing and using betting websites while on-the-go. You could be unwittingly handing criminals your passwords, credit card details, and banking info.
While you’re traveling, you may want to access your accounts and place bets while connected to public wifi. Due to the risks involved with unsecured and fake networks, we don’t recommend this. On the other hand, if you absolutely need to provide credentials and personal information over wifi, then you should take some basic precautions.
First and foremost, connect using a VPN. Some of those on our list come with automatic wifi protection for all networks or individual ones you can specify. For others, you’ll have to start the app yourself. Make sure you do this before connecting to the network as it doesn’t take long for a hacker to steal your details.
Even if you’re protected by a VPN, you should look for secure networks and stick to secure websites. You can turn off sharing settings and enable your firewall if applicable. Using common-sense while browsing, such as logging out of sites once you’re finished and using strong passwords, will help you stay safe and secure.
Best gambling sites
In case you’re running into issues with your favorite site, there may be alternatives out there to fit your needs. Since the rules for different sites vary, you may be able to find one that has the flexibility to enable you to place bets from where you live or are traveling to. Below are some popular sites and the countries they operate from. Bear in mind that the country of operation isn’t necessarily an indicator of where you can place bets from.
|Bodog||Antigua and Barbuda|
Access Gambling sites from Abroad FAQ
How do I access Sky Bet abroad?
Looking to use the popular betting site Sky Bet abroad? Here how to access Sky Bet from anywhere:
- Select a VPN provider and sign up for your chosen subscription length. We recommend NordVPN.
- Download the VPN app and log in using your new credentials.
- Connect to a server in the UK. Any UK server should work.
- Access your Sky Bet account as usual and you should be good to go.
You can follow similar steps to access other restricted betting sites from abroad.
Can I use my Coral account abroad?
One of the advantages of having a Coral account is that this British company allows you to have access to betting from two dozen countries: Albania, Argentina, Belarus, Croatia, Czech Republic, Georgia, Gibraltar, Guernsey, Iceland, Isle of Man, Jersey, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Macedonia, Malta, Netherlands, New Zealand, Republic of Ireland, San Marino, Slovakia, Slovenia, St Kitts and Nevis, Sweden, United Kingdom.
If you’re traveling in one of these countries and you’re having trouble accessing the service, you can use a VPN to switch your location to your home country.
Even if you’re located outside of these regions, you may still be able to use Coral abroad. This list is liable to change so it’s worth checking the Coral website or with the company’s support team for up-to-date information. If you are allowed to use your account, you can use a VPN to help you gain access.
Is online poker in the UAE legal and safe?
No, online poker in the UAE is not legal. Operators located inside or outside of the UAE may not allow users who are located within the UAE to access online gambling services. Even if UAE residents visit off-shore casinos, they are not permitted to use gambling services.
Is it legal to bet through bet365 from India?
Yes, it’s legal to use bet365 services from India. Bet365 operates under a UK gambling license and its servers are located outside of India. While the Indian government restricts gambling within the country, the online gambling laws only have jurisdiction over gambling activities that involve servers located within India.
Can casinos detect VPNs?
While many online casinos and betting sites aren’t concerned about customers using a VPN, others are. Some use detection measures to find out if users are connected to a VPN server. If they detect VPN usage and it’s against their terms of service, they could suspend or terminate the user’s account. That said, some VPNs (such as those that use superior cloaking technology) can bypass such detection measures.
In which countries is gambling illegal?
A VPN can help you securely access gambling sites while traveling abroad. However, we don't recommend you use gambling sites (with a VPN or otherwise) in the following countries where gambling is illegal:
- North Korea
Can I use a free VPN to access betting websites abroad?
When you’re browsing VPN providers, you’ll no doubt come across numerous free offerings. Many make bold claims and promises, but in reality, most are subpar products. And some are simply out to make a profit in unscrupulous ways.
On the practical side of things, you’ll often find a free service gives you access to a very small network of servers, so your location choice is limited. This is no good if you absolutely need a particular location for accessing betting websites.
What’s more, these services typically have too many users for their resources and you may actually have to wait for a server to become available. Clearly, this won’t do when time is of the essence and you need to place a bet. Even if you’re connected to a server, speed and reliability don’t tend to be priorities of free service providers, so there is potential for even more delays.
Even if you overcome all of the practical issues associated with a free VPN, you still have to think about privacy and security. These are often jeopardized by the methods used to create a functioning business model for the service providers. Some practices involve logging user activity, using tracking cookies, carrying malware, and even selling users’ idle bandwidth.
Can I use DraftKings with a VPN?
Draftkings, like most gambling sites, tries to prevent VPN users from betting. It's understandable - online gambling is only legal in 17 states, and it has a legal obligation to prevent users from anywhere else using the service.
The problem is that there's no telling how secure Draftkings' website is. Even assuming it's bulletproof, you might be using a poorly-secured network (such as a public wifi hotspot). In these cases, the encryption a VPN provides is extremely helpful, since it effectively prevents attackers from intercepting your data, which could include payment info or bank details.
Luckily, there are several VPNs that still work with Draftkings. If you use one of the providers listed above, you should be able to bet securely, no matter where you are.