How to watch ORF outside Austria with a VPN

Like many popular streaming platforms, ORF is region-locked. While select titles can be watched on-demand from anywhere, the vast majority can only be accessed in Austria. If you attempt to watch anything from Germany or anywhere else abroad, you’ll see the following error: “Dieses video darf aus rechtlichen gründen nur in Österreich wiedergegeben werden.” (Due to legal reasons, this video is only available in Austria).

If you’re seeing this, it’s because ORF has found that your IP address isn’t from Austria. However, if you connect to an Austrian VPN server, you’ll be given a new, local IP address, and ORF won’t be able to tell that you’re in another country. As a bonus, VPNs encrypt your traffic, preventing snoopers like your Internet Service Provider (ISP), employer, or government from seeing what you get up to online.

If you’re in a rush, you can find the best VPNs to live stream ORF from abroad below. Still unsure which is right for you? Don’t worry; we’ll provide a more in-depth review of each later.

  1. ExpressVPN: With very fast speeds, excellent unblocking ability, and strong privacy protections, ExpressVPN is ideal for watching ORF-TVthek from outside of Austria.
  2. NordVPN: NordVPN has over 30 high-speed Austrian servers, a no-logs policy, and excellent security features. It easily unblocks streaming services like ORF abroad.
  3. CyberGhost: This VPN offers pre-configured security, user-friendly apps, fast connections, and almost 70 servers in Austria. Further, it unblocks a wide range of services including ORF.
  4. PrivateVPN: This service is faster than most, includes strong security and privacy features, and boasts exceptional unblocking ability, allowing you to safely stream ORF from anywhere.

Choosing the best VPNs for ORF

The sheer number of different VPNs makes it difficult to decide which is best for any given task. This problem is compounded by the fact that not every VPN lets you watch ORF abroad. To ensure you choose a versatile, reliable service and not just one that works in this instance, we decided to only recommend VPNs which meet all of the following criteria:

  • Must unblock ORF and similar streaming services abroad
  • Provides reliable, high-speed connections
  • Uses effectively uncrackable encryption and includes additional security features
  • Keeps minimal logs, or better still, logs nothing at all
  • Offers apps for the most popular devices and operating systems

Best VPNs for watching ORF

Read on for a closer look at each of the best VPNs for streaming ORF outside Austria:

1. ExpressVPN

Express VPNMay 2019UNBLOCKS ORFTested May 2019

ExpressVPN offers more than 3,000 servers in 94 countries including Austria. This service is perfect for watching online video: it’s fast enough to stream live 1080p content without any issues. It can unblock not just ORF, but other major platforms like BBC iPlayer and Netflix US, from anywhere in the world.

This VPN keeps your activities private at all times using 256-bit encryption, perfect forward secrecy, protection against DNS and IPv6 leaks, and a kill switch (in desktop apps) which stops all traffic if you lose connection suddenly. ExpressVPN doesn’t log any personally identifiable information, but you can pay with Bitcoin if you’d like additional anonymity. If you have any issues, you can contact customer support over live chat, 24/7.

ExpressVPN apps are available for Windows, Android, MacOS, iOS, and Linux. There’s custom firmware which simplifies the process of installing it on select home routers.

Pros:

  • Fast speeds for streaming and torrenting
  • Best in class security and privacy
  • Complete privacy – no logs of personal data kept
  • Great capabilities for unblocking geo-locked content

Cons:

  • Slightly more expensive than other providers

BEST VPN FOR ORF:ExpressVPN is our #1 choice It’s a versatile, high-speed VPN with a wide range of security and privacy features. This VPN makes streaming ORF abroad trivially simple and best of all, it comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee, meaning you can try it risk-free.

2. NordVPN

NordVPNUNBLOCKS ORFTested May 2019

NordVPN offers more choice than many of its rivals, with over 5,200 servers in 60 countries (and more than 30 in Austria alone). It’s capable of unblocking popular streaming services like ORF, Amazon Prime Video, and Netflix abroad, and its high-speed connections guarantee you’ll be able to watch your favorite shows without any interruptions. Further, NordVPN permits up to six simultaneous connections, so you can protect most of your devices with a single account.

This service places major emphasis on your security. It provides 256-bit encryption, a customizable kill switch, automatic ad-blocking, malware-scanning, and protection against DNS, WebRTC, port forwarding, and IPv6 leaks. You can even choose to use two VPNs simultaneously, connect to obfuscated servers, or access Tor over VPN. NordVPN has a strict no-logs policy, meaning it can’t reveal details of your activities even if asked to. Live, chat-based customer support is available 24/7.

NordVPN has apps for Windows, MacOS, Linux, Android, and iOS. Manual installation is required for supported routers.

Pros:

  • Excellent security and encryption standards
  • Excellent unblocking ability
  • Unparalleled network – over 5,000 servers across 60 countries
  • Low cost budget provider with good global server representation

Cons:

  • Desktop apps can take some getting used to

RELIABLE, LOW-COST VPN:NordVPN provides a wealth of advanced security features and keeps no logs whatsoever. Further, with high speeds and strong unblocking ability, it allows you to watch ORF live online wherever you are. All plans include a 30-day money-back guarantee.

3. CyberGhost

CyberghostUNBLOCKS ORFTested May 2019

CyberGhost has 69 Austrian servers and over 3,600 more in a further 59 countries. Part of this VPN’s appeal is its ease of use: it offers high speeds, simple apps, and best of all, servers clearly state which streaming service they’re designed to unblock. CyberGhost permits up to seven simultaneous connections, meaning you can stream ORF safely without worrying about leaving one of your other devices unprotected.

This VPN’s security features come pre-configured so there’s no fuss. These include an always-on kill switch, 256-bit encryption, an ad-blocker, a malware-scanner, automatic wifi protection, and protection against DNS and IPv6 leaks. Further, CyberGhost doesn’t log any data that could identify you. While this service is perfect for novice users, you can reach customer support 24/7 over live chat in case of any issues.

CyberGhost offers apps for MacOS, Windows, iOS, and Android devices. It works on Linux-based platforms and select internet routers, but must be configured manually.

Pros:

  • Dozens of fast Austrian servers
  • Minimal configuration required
  • Use up to seven devices simultaneously

Cons:

  • Less suitable for power users

PRIVACY GUARANTEED:CyberGhost is ideal for those new to VPNs. It’s fast enough to stream ORF without any buffering, it unblocks various platforms abroad, and its security features are all enabled by default. Further, this service comes with a 45-day money-back guarantee.

4. PrivateVPN

PrivateVPNUNBLOCKS ORFTested May 2019

PrivateVPN might not have the largest network (around 150 servers in 60 countries including Austria) but it makes up for it with better-than-average speeds and excellent unblocking capability. It effortlessly unblocks major streaming platforms like Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, and of course, ORF. With six simultaneous connections allowed, you’re free to stream at home and on the go.

This service uses 256-bit encryption, a kill switch (Windows only), and IPv6, DNS, and WebRTC leak protection to keep your traffic secure at all times. Although PrivateVPN doesn’t keep any logs, you can sign up almost completely anonymously by paying with Bitcoin and using a throwaway email address. If you have any problems, you can contact support via live chat, 22 hours per day (excluding 1-3PM PST). Remote assistance is available in case you need help installing or configuring the software.

PrivateVPN provides Android, iOS, Windows, and MacOS apps. It has to be manually installed on Linux systems and wireless routers.

Pros:

  • Faster than many other providers
  • Unblocks ORF from outside Austria
  • Strong security and privacy protection features

Cons:

  • Doesn’t have 24/7 live chat
  • Small number of servers, newish provider still expanding their network

STREAM SAFELY ANYWHERE:PrivateVPN offers consistently high speeds, a no-logging policy, strong security features, and the ability to watch ORF live whenever and wherever you’d like. This VPN provides a 30-day money-back guarantee.


Can I watch ORF live from abroad with a free VPN?

You might be tempted to try and watch ORF online with a free VPN, but we’d advise against it for several reasons. First, ORF-TVthek has pretty strong geo-blocking measures which many paid VPNs can’t bypass. Free VPNs tend to have fewer resources to throw at problems like these, particularly if the service in question isn’t internationally known. Additionally, even if you found one that could unblock ORF, as free services often have more users than their networks can support, it’s likely you’d experience long, frequent pauses while the video buffered.

Many free VPNs rely entirely on ads to generate income, although some allow you to pay a monthly fee for higher speeds. Some go even further, storing tracking cookies on your device that allow them to harvest valuable information about what you do online. Once enough data has been accumulated, it can be sold to advertisers, usually without you ever knowing.

There’s also the security aspect to consider. In the past, we’ve seen major VPNs like Hola abuse their users’ trust by selling their bandwidth to help run a botnet. Recent research suggests smaller services are just as dangerous, with nearly 40% of surveyed apps containing malware and 18% using no encryption at all.

Using a reputable VPN with a clear, customer-first privacy policy is the best way to stay safe online.

How to watch ORF outside Austria

With the right VPN, it’s simple to bypass regional restrictions and access streaming services like ORF in Germany or any other country. Just follow the steps below:

  1. Start by signing up for a suitable VPN service. We recommend ExpressVPN.
  2. Next, download and install the software. Most major services offer a variety of apps for different platforms, so make sure to get the right version.
  3. Connect to one of your VPN’s Austrian servers.
  4. Try loading one of ORF’s live streams. It should begin immediately, but if not, clear your browser’s cache and cookies, then refresh the page.

What can I watch on ORF?

ORF is one of the biggest networks in Austria and accordingly, offers something for everyone. Its streaming service, ORF-TVthek, allows you to stream live and on-demand content from four channels (ORF eins, ORF2, ORF3, and ORF Sport). Below, we’ve listed some of the shows this platform lets you watch free online:

  1. Österreich Heute
  2. Formula 1 (all Grand Prix events)
  3. Der Alte
  4. Hallo Okidoki
  5. Dancing Stars 2019
  6. PraterSterne
  7. Schmeckt Perfekt
  8. Spuren des Bösen: Wut
  9. Studio 2
  10. Verstehen Sie Spaß?