watch South African TV abroad

It’s easy to forget that some of the services we use every day aren’t available everywhere. For instance, many people only remember that they can’t keep watching South African TV shows abroad while attempting to access region-locked streaming services on vacation. The good news is that most geo-restricted platforms rely on the user’s IP address to find their location, and this kind of blocking is extremely simple to get around.

By connecting to a VPN, you can choose to send all of your internet traffic through servers in a different country. This makes it appear as though you’re actually wherever your chosen server is. In short, if you use a South African VPN server, you can trick South African services into thinking you’re still in South Africa. Additionally, your data will be encrypted, keeping your activities private from any snoopers who might be watching.

Short on time? You’ll find a brief overview of the best VPNs for South African TV below. Otherwise, stick around: we’ll review each service in greater detail a little later on.

Best VPNs for South African TV:

  1. ExpressVPN: Our #1 pick for South African TV. Promising fast, reliable speeds and a solid set of security features, there’s very little this VPN can’t do. Also offers a 30-day money-back guarantee.
  2. NordVPN: The best budget option for streaming TV from South Africa. This no-logs service has some of the strongest security around, as well as high-speed servers and great unblocking ability.
  3. SurfsharkA speedy VPN with no connection or bandwidth limits, impressive unblocking abilities, and a great set of security features built-in.
  4. CyberGhost: Quick, reliable, and able to unblock several South African TV channels, this is a no-fuss VPN that just works. Also offers an impressive range of security and privacy features.
  5. PrivateVPN: With blazing-fast speeds, advanced security features, and excellent unblocking potential, this VPN does it all. Keeps no logs and easily unblocks South African TV.
  6. Hotspot Shield: A simple, straightforward VPN with high speeds, good unblocking ability, and plenty of security features built-in. Great for streaming, torrenting, or browsing safely.
  7. ZenMate: This no-logs VPN lets you stream South African TV from anywhere. Offers high speeds, secure connections, and the ability to protect every device you own simultaneously.

If you’re looking for a VPN you can use while living or traveling in South Africa, you might find our dedicated article on Best VPNs for South Africa helpful.

How to watch South African TV abroad with a VPN

VPNs make it very easy to access region-locked streaming services abroad. In fact, you can get started in a matter of minutes.

Here’s how to unblock South African TV channels anywhere:

  1. First, create an account with one of the VPNs below (we recommend ExpressVPN).
  2. Download and install the VPN app. Often, you’ll be allowed five or so connections at once, so you may as well install it on any device you want to stream on.
  3. Log in and select a South African server to get a South African IP Address.
  4. Visit a previously inaccessible TV channel and see if you can watch now. In most cases, your video will begin immediately but if not, clear your cookies and reload the page to fix the most common problems. Alternatively, ask your VPN’s support team for advice.

TRY A PAID VPN FREE: If you’re only looking for short-term coverage, you might want to take advantage of ExpressVPN’s 30-day money-back guarantee. Although an upfront payment is required, you’ll have 30 days to try the service out, and if you’re unsatisfied, a full refund is only a few clicks away. This means you can stream South African TV completely risk-free.

Which TV channels from South Africa can I watch online?

You’re in luck: some of South Africa’s most popular TV channels allow you to watch their content online. Better still, many of them are free to watch, without even the need to create an account. Here are a few South African streaming services you can watch abroad with a VPN:

  • SABC
  • eTV
  • Soweto TV
  • SuperSport
  • M-Net
  • Mzansi Magic

How we picked the best VPNs for South African TV

We know how difficult it can be to decide which VPN to use, which is why we only recommend services that meet a strict set of criteria. The guidelines below ensure that regardless of which you choose, you’re guaranteed to get a highly versatile VPN. In other words, the services we recommend are not just great at unblocking South African TV, they can handle just about anything you throw at them.

  • Offers at least one server in South Africa
  • Provides speedy, reliable connections
  • Unblocks popular South African TV channels from abroad
  • Refuses to store any data that could identify you
  • Keeps you safe with advanced security features and effectively uncrackable encryption
  • Can be installed on a wide range of operating systems and devices

Best VPNs for watching South African TV shows abroad

Take a look below for a more detailed look at each of our recommended VPNs:

1. ExpressVPN

ExpressVPN Nov 2020

Apps Available:

  • PC
  • Mac
  • IOS
  • Android
  • Linux

Website:  www.ExpressVPN.com

Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS

ExpressVPN is an excellent choice for streaming South African channels, or really, TV from just about anywhere. This is because it offers unlimited bandwidth and access to more than 3,000 high-speed servers in 94 countries. As such, you should be able to watch eTV and SuperSport without any noticeable lag or buffering. Further, users can secure up to five devices at once.

Once connected, your online activities are hidden thanks to ExpressVPN’s 256-bit encryption and kill switch, as well as its DNS, IPv6, and WebRTC leak protection. Further, this service doesn’t log any data that could be traced back to you. If you’d like, you can sign up almost completely anonymously with a disposable email address and Bitcoin. There’s a 24/7 live chat-based help desk in case you have any issues.

ExpressVPN provides apps for Windows, Android, MacOS, iOS, and Linux. Additionally, it has custom firmware for routers that can help you more easily protect your home network.

Pros:

  • Solid speeds and unlimited bandwidth
  • Strong unblocking capabilities
  • Plenty of advanced security and privacy features
  • Pay anonymously with Bitcoin

Cons:

  • Slightly more expensive than some other options

Our score:

4.5 out of 5

BEST VPN FOR SOUTH AFRICA:ExpressVPN is our first choice. This service boasts speedy connections, powerful security and privacy features, and the ability to unblock a wide range of South African TV channels. Also includes a risk-free 30-day money-back guarantee.

Why not take a look at the full ExpressVPN review?

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2. NordVPN

Apps Available:

  • PC
  • Mac
  • IOS
  • Android
  • Linux

Website:  www.NordVPN.com

Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS

NordVPN has more than 50 South African servers, so you’re all but guaranteed a high-speed connection, even at peak times. In fact, with over 5,300 servers in 59 countries and impressive unblocking abilities, you’ll be able to use services like SuperSport, BBC iPlayer, and Prime Video from anywhere in the world. This VPN permits six simultaneous connections per account.

It’s clear that NordVPN values its users’ privacy. For a start, it doesn’t keep any logs. Additionally, it accepts three different cryptocurrencies and has certain servers specifically optimized for maximum protection against snoopers. 256-bit encryption is included, as are a kill switch, DNS and IPv6 leak protection, and a built-in ad-blocker/malware-scanner. If you need assistance, you can reach NordVPN’s support team over live chat, day or night.

NordVPN apps are available for Linux, MacOS, Windows, iOS, and Android. Further, select wireless routers are supported via manual configuration.

Pros:

  • Achieves consistently good speeds
  • Works with plenty of South African TV channels
  • Impeccable security credentials
  • Doesn’t keep any logs

Cons:

  • Desktop apps can be slow at times

Our score:

4.5 out of 5

BEST BUDGET VPN:NordVPN is an inexpensive service that doesn’t compromise on security. Further, it offers high speeds, impressive unblocking ability, and a 30-day money-back guarantee. With a true no-logs policy, your privacy is all but guaranteed.

Check out our comprehensive NordVPN review.

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3. Surfshark

Apps Available:

  • PC
  • Mac
  • IOS
  • Android
  • Linux

Website:  www.Surfshark.com

Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS

Surfshark has more than 1,700 servers in 60+ countries, not just South Africa. It’s fast too, and offers unlimited bandwidth, meaning users won’t have to worry about lag or buffering keeping them from streaming their favorite shows. In fact, in addition to channels like SuperSport, Surfshark unblocks well-known services like Netflix USA and Hulu. Best of all, there’s no connection limit.

This VPN features a wide range of security features, such as 256-bit encryption, a kill switch, automatic ad-blocking and malware-scanning, and protection against IPv6 and DNS leaks. It also boasts a NoBorders mode capable of getting around country-wide internet censorship. Crucially, Surfshark doesn’t keep any logs. Should you run into any problems, you can reach customer support 24/7 over live chat.

Surfshark offers iOS, Android, MacOS, Windows, and Linux apps. To use it with supported routers, you’ll have to install it manually.

Pros:

  • Solid speeds and good unblocking capabilities
  • Strong commitment to your security
  • No limit on the number of devices connected

Cons:

  • Some slow speeds

Our score:

4 out of 5

GREAT FOR STREAMING:Surfshark is fast, able to unblock several major streaming platforms, and comes packed with advanced security features. If that still doesn’t convince you, perhaps its lack of a connection limit or its 30-day money-back guarantee will.

Read our comprehensive Surfshark review.

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4. CyberGhost

Apps Available:

  • PC
  • Mac
  • IOS
  • Android
  • Linux

Website:  www.Cyberghost.com

Money-back guarantee: 45 DAYS

CyberGhost has a truly huge network, with 6,000+ servers in South Africa and another 87 countries. This alone would make it a strong choice for anyone looking to stream, but when you factor in its consistently high speeds and fantastic unblocking capabilities, its real value becomes clear. Further, with up to seven simultaneous connections permitted, you’ll be able to watch eTV, Netflix US, or SuperSport wherever you go.

This VPN makes staying safe online as simple as possible. There’s no configuration required as connections are secured with IPv6 and DNS leak protection, 256-bit encryption, and a kill switch by default. There’s also a malware-scanner and ad-blocker, giving you even greater protection. Additionally, CyberGhost doesn’t log any personally identifiable data, so you can rest assured that your privacy is in good hands. Support staff are on-hand 24/7 over email and live chat.

CyberGhost offers easy-to-use apps for MacOS, iOS, Windows, and Android, This service also works with Linux systems and select routers via manual installation.

Pros:

  • Plenty of fast South African servers
  • Very easy to use
  • Excellent unblocking ability
  • Solid privacy and security features enabled by default

Cons:

  • Lack of configuration options will frustrate power users

Our score:

4 out of 5

USER-FRIENDLY:CyberGhost is a high-speed, low-cost VPN that’s great for streaming. What’s more, with solid unblocking capabilities, pre-configured security features, and a generous 45-day money-back guarantee, it’s ideal for anyone looking for their first VPN.

Read our full review of CyberGhost.

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5. PrivateVPN

Apps Available:

  • PC
  • Mac
  • IOS
  • Android
  • Linux

Website:  www.PrivateVPN.com

Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS

PrivateVPN doesn’t have as large a network as some of its competitors, but its 150 servers (in 60 countries) all offer exceptionally high speeds. What’s more, they’re capable of unblocking notoriously tricky region-locked services like Netflix, BBC iPlayer, and Hulu, so you shouldn’t have any problems streaming South African TV channels abroad. With a six-connection limit, you won’t have to worry about leaving any devices unprotected.

This service comes packed with powerful security features including 256-bit AES encryption, a customizable kill switch, and a stealth mode that helps you hide the fact that you’re even using a VPN in the first place. There’s also built-in protection against DNS and IPv6 leaks. PrivateVPN follows a strict zero-logs policy and provides live chat-based support almost (but not quite) around the clock.

PrivateVPN has apps for a wide range of platforms (iOS, Android, Windows, MacOS, and Linux). Further, it can be manually configured for use with supported internet routers.

Pros:

  • One of the fastest VPNs around
  • Capable of unblocking all but the most stubborn services abroad
  • Keeps no logs and offers a wide range of security features

Cons:

  • Relatively few servers to choose from

Our score:

4.5 out of 5

NO LAG WHATSOEVER:PrivateVPN provides very fast, consistent connections and unblocks plenty of South African streaming services. What’s more, it has an excellent security offering, a zero-logs policy, and a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Take a look at our in-depth PrivateVPN review.

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6. Hotspot Shield

Apps Available:

  • PC
  • Mac
  • IOS
  • Android
  • Linux

Website:  www.Hotspotshield.com

Money-back guarantee: 45 DAYS

Hotspot Shield has more than 3,200 servers in over 80 countries including South Africa. As such, it allows users to easily stream TV from all over the world. Further, with high speeds, no bandwidth limits, and fantastic unblocking ability, you’ll be able to watch almost anything, almost anywhere, without any noticeable lag or buffering. Hotspot Shield imposes a five-connection limit.

This VPN comes with an impressive array of security features. For instance, there’s 256-bit encryption, DNS and IPv6 leak protection, and a kill switch that stops sending data the moment your connection drops. Also included are split tunneling functionality and automatic wifi protection. Hotspot Shield deletes all identifiable data once your session ends, which means it can’t reveal what you get up to online under any circumstances. This service operates a 24/7 live chat help desk.

Hotspot Shield has Android, iOS, Windows, and MacOS apps. If you’d like to use it on a Linux system or network router, you can follow a manual setup guide.

Pros:

  • Steady speeds and unlimited bandwidth
  • Unblocks some of the most popular streaming services from abroad
  • Good range of security settings

Cons:

  • Some past privacy concerns
  • Doesn’t support any anonymous payment options

Our score:

4.5 out of 5

HIGHLY VERSATILE:Hotspot Shield isn’t just great for streaming South African TV abroad; its steady speeds, powerful security, and large network make it a strong choice for almost any task. Still not convinced? This service also comes with a 45-day money-back guarantee.

Find out more in our Hotspot Shield review.

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7. ZenMate

Apps Available:

  • PC
  • Mac
  • IOS
  • Android

Website:  www.zenmate.com

Money-back guarantee: 30 days

ZenMate has around two dozen high-speed South African servers and roughly 3,500 servers in 74 countries worldwide. With reliable connections, unlimited bandwidth, and the ability to unblock plenty of popular geo-restricted services, this VPN is a strong choice for live streaming South African TV, but also for gaming, everyday browsing, or torrenting. Best of all, you can connect every device you own simultaneously.

There’s a lot to like here from a security perspective. First, ZenMate uses its own DNS servers, which reduces the risk of third-party interference. It also offers effectively uncrackable 256-bit encryption and DNS leak protection to protect you from snoopers, as well as a kill switch so you never have to browse unprotected. Although it’s a little unclear from the privacy policy, ZenMate doesn’t keep any logs that could identify you. Live chat-based support is available 24/7.

ZenMate users can install apps for MacOS, Windows, iOS, and Android. Alternatively, they can manually configure this service for use on Linux systems and home routers.

Pros:

  • Fast and great at unblocking stubborn streaming services abroad
  • Strong on security and privacy
  • Connect as many devices as you like

Cons:

  • Some servers are slower than others
  • Privacy policy could be worded better

Our score:

4.5 out of 5

WATCH TV ANYWHERE:ZenMate is fast enough for you to watch South African TV in the highest possible quality, wherever you are. It’s secure too, and doesn’t keep any logs that could identify you. A 30-day money-back guarantee is also included.

Interested? Check out the full ZenMate review.

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Streaming South African TV abroad: FAQs

Is it possible to stream South African TV with a free VPN?

You might be able to watch TV from South Africa using a free VPN, but you’re far more likely to have a poor experience doing so. These services often only have a handful of servers, despite having far more users than their paid rivals. This leads to an overloaded network, which manifests as extremely slow speeds and videos that buffer endlessly. What’s more, as there’s so much traffic coming from so few IP addresses, free VPNs are usually the first to be blacklisted by popular streaming services. 

You should also be aware of the security issues that free VPNs pose. Many seemingly legitimate services fail to encrypt your data, which means they offer no protection whatsoever from snoopers. To make matters worse, a large percentage of free VPN apps contain malware, so you’re gambling with your system security every time you install one. We’d recommend you use a well-respected, no-logs VPN provider instead of relying on potentially unsafe free services.  

Is watching TV from other countries with a VPN illegal?

In most countries, it’s not actually illegal to access geo-blocked content with a VPN. However, doing so may be against the terms of service of whichever streaming platform you’re using. In most cases, there won’t be any consequences; if a service realizes you’re connected to a VPN, you’ll simply be asked to disconnect before you’re able to watch anything. If there’s any doubt, we advise reading up on your country’s streaming laws before attempting to stream with a VPN. 

Why might I need a South African IP address?

You can do all kinds of things with an IP address from South Africa. Maybe you’re looking to stream DStv Now channels while on vacation, for example. Perhaps you’re traveling and just want to access your FirstRand, Absa, or Barclays online banking service without having your account access restricted by automated fraud prevention systems. 

South Africa has a relatively free internet, which means that your VPN’s South African servers will allow you to bypass online censorship in nearby countries like Kenya and Angola. Of course, as well as changing your IP address, VPNs encrypt your traffic, preventing it from being read by hackers or the government. This is useful whether you’re a journalist reporting from oppressive regimes or just a holidaymaker who wants to stay safe on public wifi networks.