How to watch Hulu in Canada or the UK with a VPN

Published by on October 10, 2016 in VPN & Privacy

hulu
Hulu isn’t officially available outside of the United States and Japan. If you try to watch Hulu in Canada, Australia, the UK or any other country, you will encounter the following error message:

“Sorry, currently our video library can only be watched from within the United States.”

Bummer.

After Netflix, Hulu is one of the most popular streaming video services in the United States. It was created by three major US networks–Fox, NBC, and ABC–with content from them, their subsidiaries, and many other sources.

So being stuck behind that firewall stinks, especially if you’re traveling and want to watch Hulu in the UK, Canada or anywhere abroad on a temporary basis. Luckily, there’s a way to get around it.

A VPN is a type of proxy service that changes your device’s IP address to one in another location. This can make it appear to Hulu as if you are accessing the site or app from the United States instead of Canada. All you need to do is install the software, choose a server in the US, and connect to it. Now that all your internet traffic is routed through a US server before going to Hulu, you can watch to your heart’s content.

But there’s a catch: Hulu has gotten really good at blocking VPN users. In order to enforce the content licensing restrictions imposed by copyright holders, Hulu detects and blocks any user it finds using a proxy connection. It’s better at blocking VPNs than Amazon Prime and HBO Now. It’s even better than Netflix.

Because of this, your options are limited. A handful of VPNs can still get around Hulu’s firewall without detection. They all require a paid subscription, so don’t expect a free fix. Some are still small enough not to warrant Hulu’s attention, while others are big players with the resources to pour into advanced obfuscation tactics and reacting quickly to IP bans.

Even on the VPNs that still support Hulu users, not just any server in the US will do. You’ll need to contact customers support and ask which servers are currently working with Hulu and connect to those. The servers occasionally get blocked and new ones are added as Hulu plays a cat-and-mouse game with VPN providers. For this reason, a VPN provider with live support, such as ExpressVPN is really handy.

Deal alert: ExpressVPN are offering Comparitech’s readers an extra 3 months free with their annual plan. There is a 30 day money-back guarantee so you can try it risk free and get a full refund if you’re not happy.

See also: What’s the best VPN for Canada

Watching Hulu from abroad on a Roku, Fire TV, Chromecast, or other Android-based device

Watching Hulu with a VPN from abroad is hard enough, but watching on a streaming media device such as Roku, Fire TV, Chromecast, or some other Android-based device is even more difficult. These devices don’t have built-in support for VPNs.

That means the VPN must be set up on a router. You can use either your physical home wifi router, or use a Mac or Windows laptop to create a virtual wifi router, which is sort of the same as setting up a wifi hotspot on your phone.

Check out our instructions for how to watch Hulu from abroad on Chromecast, Roku, Fire TV, etc. Keep in mind that wifi routers come installed with a range of different firmware, so the process for setting up a VPN on one varies.

Still not working? Try disabling IPv6

Even when using a VPN that claims to work with Hulu, there’s a chance you’ll still encounter an error message on Hulu instructing you to turn off your “anonymous proxy.” This is because the vast majority of VPNs still don’t protect against IPv6 leaks. While a VPN can route all your traffic requests through its own DNS servers and mask your IPv4 address, IPv6 addresses still get sent without being hidden. IPv6 serves the same purpose as IPv6, but contains a far wider range of possible IP addresses for internet-connected devices.

The solution is an imperfect but effective VPN block workaround for Hulu: disable IPv6. We say it’s imperfect because it would be better if everyone switched over to IPv6 due to the IPv4 protocol running out of unique IP addresses. Limiting yourself to IPv4 is bad for the long term health of the internet, but it won’t affect much else.

How to disable IPv6 on a Windows PC (Windows 10):

  1. Disconnect and close the VPN app
  2. Tap Windows Key+R to open the Run prompt
  3. Type ncpa.cpl and hit Enter to open your Network Connections
  4. Find the connection you are using, right click it, and select Properties
  5. On the Networking or General tab, uncheck the box that says “Internet Protocol Version 6 (TCP/IPv6)”
  6. Click OK to save changes and close the Window
  7. Tap Windows Key+R and select Command Prompt (Admin), then hit Yes when asked if it’s okay for the program to make changes to your computer
  8. In the command prompt (black window), type ipconfig /flushdns and hit Enter.
  9. Reconnect to the VPN, refresh the Hulu page, and enjoy the video!

How to disable IPv6 on Mac OSX:

  1. Disconnect and close the VPN app
  2. Open the Apple menu.
  3. Choose System Preferences > Network > AirPort > Advanced
  4. Click TCP/IP.
  5. Click on the Configure IPv6 pop-up menu and select Off.
  6. Click OK and Apply (to apply the change).
  7. Reconnect to the VPN, refresh the Hulu page, and enjoy the video!

How to watch Hulu on Kodi

Kodi subscribers can install an add-on to watch Hulu on Kodi. Kodi is a free home theater software applications that streams media from a wide range of sources. It runs on multiple platforms including Windows, Mac OSX, Android, Linux, and Raspberry Pi.

All of the geographic viewing restrictions still apply, so you’ll still need a VPN. Find the Hulu Plus Kodi add-on here. Learn how to install Kodi repositories and add-ons using our tutorial and to find a VPN check out our article on the best VPNs for Kodi users.

Paying for Hulu from outside the US

Hulu requires customers’ money comes from the US as well, at least for the first payment. If you live outside of the country without a domestic credit card or PayPal account, paying the monthly bill requires some extra effort.

Below are a couple of solutions that reportedly allow those without a US credit card or PayPal account to pay for Hulu. Full disclosure: these methods are secondhand knowledge, and we did not test them out for ourselves.

  • A prepaid card from this website costs about $20 plus however much credit you want to put on your Hulu account. After initially setting up the account, you can just buy Hulu gift cards on Amazon or elsewhere online for subsequent payments. That way you don’t have to pay the $20 premium after the first month. Similar prepaid card options are available on eBay as well.
  • EntroPay allows you to make payments online by setting up a prepaid virtual visa card. Users report that this cannot be used to make a payment directly to Hulu, but it can be used to set up a US-based PayPal account. The PayPal account can then be used to make payments on Hulu.
  • StatesPay is another virtual credit card provider that costs $3.95 per month. In theory you should be able to just pay for the first month to set up the account and then use Hulu gift cards to make subsequent payments. The site is not accepting new sign ups as of the time of writing, however, so you might have to wait awhile before the service is available again.

Related: How to watch US Netflix with a VPN.

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