You may already be aware, but Netflix changes its content depending on where you are. For instance, in Japan, new episodes of high-profile anime like Attack on Titan are added each week, but those in other countries often have to wait months after the series ends to watch these. A VPN puts control back into your hands by allowing you to spoof your location and access geo-blocked services like Netflix from anywhere in the world.
So how does this all work? Simply, VPNs send your internet traffic through a server in a different country. Doing so hides your real IP address, improving your privacy and making it appear as though you are wherever your chosen server is. In other words, you could use a Japanese VPN server to unblock Japan-only services while traveling abroad. Even better, VPNs encrypt your data, which prevents it from being read by snoopers, network admins, or your ISP.
How to access Netflix Japan while traveling abroad
This might sound a little complicated, but VPNs are actually much easier to use than you’d expect. Below is a quick guide to streaming Japanese Netflix outside of Japan.
Here’s how to watch Japanese Netflix from anywhere:
- Start by signing up for a reputable VPN provider. We recommend NordVPN but Surfshark and ExpressVPN are two high-quality alternatives.
- Download your VPN app. Most allow you five or so connections at once, so feel free to secure any other devices you might have once you’ve installed the app on whichever one you’d like to stream on.
- Log in and connect to a server in Japan. This will provide you with a Japanese IP address and trick region-locked services like Netflix into thinking you’re actually in Japan.
- Finally, visit Netflix and search for a Japan-only title like To Your Eternity. If nothing shows up, Netflix has detected your VPN. Clearing your cookies and reloading the page might help, or you could try a different server. If problems persist, get in touch with your VPN’s support team for more advice.
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If you’re new to VPNs, it’s easy to get overwhelmed by the number of services vying for your attention. Here’s a tip: services that claim to be the best at everything rarely are. Instead, you’d be better served by a well-rounded VPN that can deal with everyday tasks consistently. With this in mind, we decided to only recommend services meeting all of the criteria below:
- Has fast servers in Japan
- Can unblock Netflix Japan and ideally, other Japanese streaming services
- Uses a wide range of security features to keep you safe online
- Doesn’t keep any personally identifiable logs
- Provides apps for all major operating systems
Best VPNs to get Japanese Netflix
Here’s a quick look at each of the VPNs we recommend for unblocking Netflix Japan.
Best VPNs to watch Japanese Netflix:
- NordVPN: Our top VPN for Netflix Japan. Known for its strong security toolkit and impressive speeds. Unblocks a huge range of services and offers a risk-free 30-day money-back guarantee.
- Surfshark: The best way to watch Japanese Netflix on a budget. Has excellent security and privacy credentials, as well as fast speeds and no connection limit. Keeps no logs at all.
- ExpressVPN: A well-respected provider with blazing fast speeds and the ability to access more than a half dozen regional Netflix libraries. Takes your security seriously.
- CyberGhost: An easy-to-use VPN with servers specifically for unblocking Netflix Japan. Boasts pre-configured security tools and high-speed servers in over 90 countries.
- IPVanish: This security-focused service works well with Netflix Japan and is fast enough for uninterrupted streaming. Allows you to secure all of your devices simultaneously.
- PrivateVPN: A zero-logs VPN with high speeds and a great selection of security features built-in. Also has exceptional unblocking capabilities, and works flawlessly with Netflix Japan.
Best VPN for Netflix Japan
Let’s take a closer look at each of the best VPNs for Japanese Netflix:
Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS
NordVPN is our first choice for Japanese Netflix. It offers access to 5,400+ servers in around 59 countries, including Japan. It’s one of the fastest providers on the market, and can reliably unblock just about any streaming platform you can think of, so you shouldn’t have any issues when watching Netflix or Amazon Prime Video. Further, with up to six simultaneous connections permitted per account, you’re free to protect all of your most-used devices at the same time.
Of course, this provider comes packed with security features as well. There’s 256-bit AES encryption which stops anyone from seeing what you do online, protection against IPv6, DNS, and WebRTC leaks, and a kill switch. This service can also block ads and scan for malware automatically. Most importantly, NordVPN keeps no logs whatsoever. Should you run into any problems, live chat is available 24/7.
NordVPN users can access iOS, MacOS, Android, Windows, and Linux apps. Additionally, it’s possible to manually install this service on supported internet routers.
- Fast enough for 4K streaming
- Unblocks Japanese Netflix with ease
- Cutting-edge security features
- Doesn’t keep any logs
- Around-the-clock live chat available
- Desktop apps can be slow at times
BEST VPN FOR JAPANESE NETFLIX:NordVPN is our first choice for watching Japanese Netflix abroad. Boasts steady speeds plus a strong focus on security and privacy. This no-logs provider even offers a 30-day money-back guarantee so you can try it risk-free.
Find out more in our full NordVPN review.
Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS
Surfshark is our top budget pick. It has around 3,200 servers in 65 countries, and its Tokyo-based servers are able to unblock platforms like Netflix Japan and Fuji TV with ease. Speeds are consistent and more than enough for HD live streaming. This service doesn’t have any bandwidth or connection limits, which means you’re free to watch as much as you want, on any device, anywhere.
Security is one of Surfshark’s biggest strengths. It uses 256-bit encryption, DNS and IPv6 leak protection, and a kill switch to help shield your identity and activities from snoopers. Further, this VPN includes a NoBorders mode capable of bypassing country-wide restrictions in places like China. Surfshark doesn’t keep any logs and as such, can’t reveal what you do online under any circumstances. Support staff are on hand 24/7 over email and live chat.
Surfshark comes with its own Windows, MacOS, Linux, Android, and iOS apps. If you’d prefer, it can be manually configured to work with a wide range of wireless routers.
- Offers a fast, reliable service
- Excellent unblocking ability
- Powerful security features
- Zero-logs provider
- Protect all your devices at once
- Customer support could be improved
BEST BUDGET VPN:Surfshark is an affordable option that performs just as well as its higher-priced rivals. As well as a total lack of any connection limits, it has an exceptional security and privacy offering, solid unblocking abilities, and a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Take a look at the complete Surfshark review.
Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS
ExpressVPN operates more than 3,000 servers in around 94 countries, Japan included. Out of all the VPNs we’ve tested, this is the fastest by far, so it’s ideal for streaming 4K shows on Netflix, or live TV on services like NHK or Nippon TV. Of course, it also works with plenty of services from outside of Japan, like YouTube TV and HBO Max. Up to five simultaneous connections are permitted at any time.
This provider clearly values your privacy. Not only does it use effectively uncrackable 256-bit encryption, but it also protects against DNS and IPv6 leaks. Further, there’s a kill switch that prevents you from accidentally browsing unprotected. ExpressVPN refuses to log any information that could identify you, and even allows users to pay in Bitcoin for another layer of anonymity. For help with any issues, just reach out to support using the 24/7 live chat service.
ExpressVPN offers MacOS, Linux, Windows, iOS, and Android apps. It also has its own router firmware, which makes it easier for you to secure your whole network at once.
- Fastest VPN on the market
- Unblocks over a dozen Netflix libraries
- Puts your security first
- Keeps no traffic logs and accepts Bitcoin
- Not the cheapest choice on this list
PERFECT FOR NETFLIX:ExpressVPN unblocks plenty of regional catalogs, including Netflix Japan. It’s incredibly fast too, so 4K streaming is no problem. With a 30-day money-back guarantee, plenty of security features, and servers in 94 countries, this VPN is one to consider.
Check out our in-depth review of ExpressVPN.
Money-back guarantee: 45 DAYS
CyberGhost has a larger network than any other provider in our list, with roughly 7,000 servers in 91 countries, around 50 of which are in Japan. Not only that, but it offers specially configured streaming servers capable of unblocking platforms like Netflix and Hulu in one click. This provider’s speeds are consistent and there are no bandwidth limits at all. Up to seven simultaneous connections are permitted per account.
This VPN makes it as easy as possible to stream safely, since its 256-bit encryption, kill switch, and protection against DNS and IPv6 leaks are all enabled by default. What’s more, CyberGhost doesn’t log any personally identifiable data, meaning you don’t have to worry about having your activities traced back to you. Although this service makes every effort to be user-friendly, it also offers around-the-clock support via email and live chat.
CyberGhost has apps for Linux, MacOS, Windows, Android, and iOS. If you’d like to secure every device on your home network, you can manually install this VPN on supported routers.
- Dozens of fast Japanese servers
- One-click unblocking for some of your favorite streaming services
- Wide range of security and privacy features
- Offers 24/7 live chat
- Power-users may lament lack of advanced configuration options
SPEEDY AND SECURE:CyberGhost is very fast, with pre-configured security features and solid unblocking ability. In fact, it even offers servers specifically designed for accessing Netflix Japan abroad. This user-friendly provider comes with a 45-day money-back guarantee.
Interested? Why not check out the full CyberGhost review?
Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS
IPVanish has around 1,600 servers in 60+ countries, with around 20 in Tokyo alone. While accessing region-locked services isn’t this VPN’s strongest area, it’s more than a match for Netflix Japan and NHK. Additionally, thanks to its stable speeds and total lack of a connection limit, users can stream their favorite shows across all of their devices.
This provider boasts a strong selection of powerful security features. To begin with, there’s 256-bit encryption, a kill switch, and protection against IPv6 and DNS leaks. Additionally, users can choose to block local connections entirely or to scramble their traffic (which could help you access services with strict VPN-blocking measures). This is a zero-logs provider, so your privacy is in good hands. Support staff can be reached 24/7 over live chat.
IPVanish apps are available for Windows, Android, MacOS, and iOS. Further, it can be manually installed on Linux systems and supported wireless routers.
- High speeds and unlimited bandwidth
- Works with Netflix US and Japan
- Has one of the strongest security and privacy offerings on the market
- Has no connection or bandwidth limits
- Can’t unblock as many streaming services as some others on this list
STREAM ANYWHERE:IPVanish is a high-speed VPN that lets you connect any number of devices at once. This makes it a great choice for those who like to watch Netflix on the go. Also offers a fantastic set of security features, a no-logs policy, and a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Read our comprehensive IPVanish review.
Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS
PrivateVPN may not have as large a network as others in this list, with just 200 servers in 63 countries, Japan included. However, it makes up for it by providing above-average speeds and the ability to unblock a huge range of popular platforms. Whether you’re looking to stream Amazon Prime Video, Hulu, or Disney+, this service is a fantastic choice. Thanks to its six-connection limit, you’ll be able to browse, torrent, and stream safely, wherever you are.
This provider boasts a true zero-logs policy and a wide range of security features, like 256-bit encryption and a customizable kill switch. It also protects against DNS and IPv6 leaks, and you can activate the Stealth mode to get around most online restrictions (including China’s Great Firewall). PrivateVPN keeps no logs at all and provides live chat-based support most hours each day.
PrivateVPN has Android, Windows, iOS, MacOS, and Linux apps. Alternatively, users can follow manual setup guides to install this service on supported network routers.
- Provides above-average speeds
- No issues unblocking Netflix or similar services abroad
- No-logs VPN with plenty of security features
- Live chat goes offline for two hours per day
- Small but growing network of servers
GREAT EVERYDAY VPN:PrivateVPN is fast, secure, and able to access a huge number of region-locked services. As such, it’s a fantastic choice for most tasks, whether you’re in Japan or traveling abroad. Best of all, this VPN comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
To find out more, check out our complete PrivateVPN review.
Watching Japanese Netflix abroad: FAQs
Can I stream Japanese Netflix with a free VPN?
Free VPNs often market themselves as offering all of the benefits of their paid rivals, with none of the downsides. In reality though, there’s no comparison to be made. Free providers usually only offer a handful of servers, and often have to impose monthly data limits, making them impractical for regular use. Further, because they have so many users on such a limited network, it’s extremely easy for Netflix to identify and blacklist their servers. When you consider that this network load also causes extremely slow speeds, it becomes clear that free VPNs can’t be relied on to unblock Netflix Japan.
These providers leave a lot to be desired from a security perspective too. In fact, you can hardly call many of them privacy tools, given research has shown that almost 40 percent of surveyed free VPN apps come bundled with malware and a further 18 percent fail to encrypt their users’ data. To keep yourself safe online, we recommend taking a service’s reputation, logging policy, and security features into account, instead of just using whatever is free.
Is it legal to watch Japanese Netflix with a VPN?
Despite what you might think, most countries don’t actually have laws against using a VPN to stream region-locked content. As such, unless you’re somewhere like Iraq or China, where VPN usage is regulated or banned outright, there’s no reason you should expect to get into trouble.
It is worth noting that this is technically against Netflix’s terms of service. However, even if the service detects that you’re using a VPN, it’ll simply show you a limited selection of content until you disconnect. To date, there are no credible reports of anyone being banned just for using a VPN on Netflix.
What can I watch on Netflix Japan?
Netflix Japan’s biggest claim to fame is its constantly expanding library of currently-airing anime but it also boasts plenty of other shows and movies that aren’t available elsewhere in the world. Here’s a quick rundown of some of the content only offered in the Japanese library:
- I Will Do It In the Next Life
- One Piece Stampede
- Ride Your Wave
- So I’m a Spider, So What?
- More than a dozen Godzilla movies
- Coffee and Vanilla
- Path of the Dragons
- Terrace House (2014)
- The Back of Shadow