How to bypass YouTube region blocks with a VPN (1)

Most people across the globe have no issues accessing YouTube, except in countries where the platform is blocked, such as China and North Korea. But no matter what country you’re in, certain YouTube content is geo-restricted, so you can only watch it if you’re in the right region. If you’d like an easy way around this, you’re in luck. A Virtual Private Network (VPN) can help you trick YouTube into giving you access to otherwise blocked content.

A VPN encrypts all of your web traffic and sends it through a secondary server. The trick is that you get to choose the location of that server. Then your real IP address is replaced with one from that location. For example, if you’re in the UK and connect to a US VPN server, you’ll get a US IP address, and it will appear to YouTube that you’re located in the US. The encryption aspect means that no snoopers such as network administrators, internet service providers, or hackers can see what you’re doing online.

Once you’ve got your VPN set up, accessing region-locked YouTube videos is trivially simple.

How to bypass YouTube region block

Below is a step-by-step guide to bypassing YouTube region blocks with a VPN. It’s quick and easy to do, even if you’ve never used a VPN before.

Here’s how to watch blocked YouTube videos in your country:

  1. Select a suitable VPN provider and subscribe. We recommend ExpressVPN, but CyberGhost and NordVPN are two great budget alternatives.
  2. Download the native VPN client or app for your device. Desktop clients are available on the VPN provider website and iOS and Android apps can be downloaded from their respective app stores.
  3. Connect to a server in the appropriate country. For example, if you’re trying to unblock UK content, connect to a UK server.
  4. Navigate to the video you want to watch and enjoy!

If you run into issues, try clearing your browser’s cache and cookies and reloading the page. If you’re still unable to watch, check with your VPN’s customer support team, as there may be specific servers you need to use for unblocking YouTube.

Can every VPN change your country on YouTube?

YouTube doesn’t actively block VPN traffic like Netflix and Amazon Prime Video. That said, not every VPN will work with the platform. For example, some give away your location by leaking your real IP address. With the wrong VPN, you may find yourself still presented with one of the following errors:

This video is not available in your country.

The uploader has not made this video available in your country. Sorry about that.

YouTube error.

We’ll go into more detail below, but these are our top picks for a YouTube VPN that works:

Best VPNs to change YouTube country:

  1. ExpressVPN: The best VPN for YouTube and other streaming sites. It’s fast, reliable, and secure, and comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
  2. CyberGhost: Best budget option. An ever-expanding VPN that’s fast and very easy to use.
  3. NordVPN: A good all-rounder with a large network and excellent unblocking abilities.
  4. Hotspot Shield: This no-logs provider offers fast, secure connections, and great customer support.
  5. IPVanish: Fast enough for watching YouTube without buffering and in HD. Apps are secure and privacy is paramount.
  6. Surfshark: A reliable VPN with no connection limit.
  7. PrivateVPN: Unblocks tons of streaming sites and keeps no logs.

When you’re choosing a YouTube VPN, you need to consider various factors, such as whether it’s suitable for streaming and the quality of the customer support. We based our selection of the best VPNs for YouTube  on the following criteria:

  • Unblocks YouTube
  • Has a large selection of servers
  • Pegs fast speeds for streaming HD video
  • Uses strong encryption
  • Keep no logs of user-identifying data
  • Provides 24/7 customer support

Best VPNs to bypass YouTube region blocks

Here is our list of the best VPNs you can use to change your IP address and watch YouTube videos blocked in your country:

1. ExpressVPN

ExpressVPNDec 2019unblocks youtubeTested Dec 2019

Apps Available:

  • PC
  • Mac
  • IOS
  • Android
  • Linux

Website: www.ExpressVPN.com

Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS

ExpressVPN is our first choice for a YouTube VPN. It has incredible speeds and a network spanning 94 countries. This VPN imposes no data caps or bandwidth limits meaning you can stream as much as you like. It works reliably in China so you can even watch YouTube while visiting the country. Plus, ExpressVPN will enable you access to tough-to-crack sites like Netflix US and UK, BBC iPlayer, and Hulu.

ExpressVPN packs all the security features you need, including strong encryption, leak protection, and a kill switch (dubbed a “network lock”). It doesn’t keep logs of any information that could be used to identify you. This provider allows torrenting and accepts bitcoin payments.

Apps are available for Linux, Windows, MacOS, iOS, and Android. ExpressVPN is compatible with select routers and even has its own custom router firmware. Five devices can be connected at one time.

Pros:

  • Excellent unblocking abilities
  • Fast speeds for streaming HD video
  • Large number of server locations
  • Strong security and privacy features
  • Top-notch customer support available 24/7

Cons:

  • Priced a little higher than some rivals

Our score:

4.5 out of 5

BEST VPN FOR YOUTUBE:ExpressVPN is our top choice for bypassing YouTube region blocks. It’s fast, secure, and reliable, and comes with excellent customer support. ExpressVPN is risk-free with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Read our full review of ExpressVPN.

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2. CyberGhost

Cyberghostunblocks youtubeTested Dec 2019

Apps Available:

  • PC
  • Mac
  • IOS
  • Android
  • Linux

Website: www.Cyberghost.com

Money-back guarantee: 45 DAYS

CyberGhost’s server network is ever-growing, and there are now almost 6,000 in 90 countries. Speeds are plenty fast enough for streaming and there are no limits on data or bandwidth. Within CyberGhost’s app, select servers are labeled with the streaming services they are optimized for, including YouTube, Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, and more.

CyberGhost is another no-logs provider that has your back when it comes to security. 256-bit encryption is coupled with perfect forward secrecy, and a kill switch and leak protection are built-in. Desktop clients are available for Windows and MacOS, and mobile apps for iOS and Android. CyberGhost is configurable with Linux and some routers. Plans come with a seven-device limit.

Pros:

  • Easy-to-use apps designed for unblocking
  • Very fast speeds
  • Huge server network
  • Strong encryption

Cons:

  • Lacks some advanced settings options

Our score:

4 out of 5

BEST BUDGET VPN:CyberGhost apps are easy to get started with and give you access to a huge network of fast and reliable servers. This provider offers a 45-day money-back guarantee.

Read our in-depth review of CyberGhost.

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3. NordVPN

NordVPNunblocks youtubeTested Dec 2019

Apps Available:

  • PC
  • Mac
  • IOS
  • Android
  • Linux

Website: www.NordVPN.com

Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS

NordVPN is a good all-rounder. This provider operates a very large network of more than 5,600 servers in 60 countries, and is another one that works in China. Aside from YouTube, NordVPN can help you unblock lots of sites, including Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, and BBC iPlayer.

This true no-logs provider protects your information with military-grade encryption, a kill switch, and leak protection. Extras include automatic wifi protection and servers optimized for double VPN and P2P. You can use NordVPN on up to six devices at a time and apps are available for Windows, Linux, MacOS, iOS, and Android. Some routers are configurable as well.

Pros:

  • Unblocks YouTube and other platforms
  • Strong security features
  • Keeps no logs at all
  • Provides prompt support

Cons:

  • Can be slow at times

Our score:

4.5 out of 5

STRONG ALL-ROUNDER:NordVPN easily unblocks YouTube It unblocks a ton of sites and comes with lots of security extras. A 30-day money-back guarantee is included.

Check out our full review of NordVPN.

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4. Hotspot Shield

Hotspot Shieldunblocks youtubeTested Dec 2019

Apps Available:

  • PC
  • Mac
  • IOS
  • Android

Website: www.Hotspotshield.com

Money-back guarantee: 45 DAYS

Hotspot Shield is growing its network and currently runs more than 3,000 servers in over 70 countries. It can provide access to YouTube and other platforms, such as Amazon Prime Video and Netflix. Fast speeds are attributed to Hotspot Shield’s proprietary “Catapult Hydra” protocol, which is used by several top cybersecurity firms.

This provider doesn’t disappoint when it comes to security. It offers plenty of features to protect your data, including strong encryption, leak protection, perfect forward secrecy, and a kill switch in all apps. No user-identifying logs are maintained. Each paid plan allows for up to five simultaneous connections and there are apps for Windows, MacOS, iOS, and Android.

Pros:

  • Great speeds for watching HD video
  • Unblocks YouTube and other platforms
  • Strong security
  • Large server network

Cons:

  • Customer support could be improved

FAST AND RELIABLE:Hotspot Shield was super fast in testing and proved to be a very reliable VPN. The company honors a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Read the full review of Hotspot Shield.

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5. IPVanish

IPVanishunblocks youtubeTested Dec 2019

Apps Available:

  • PC
  • Mac
  • IOS
  • Android
  • Linux

Website: www.IPVanish.com

Money-back guarantee: 7 DAYS

IPVanish has a loyal following of users utilizing its network of over 1,000 servers. This provider can unblock multiple sites, including YouTube, as well as Netflix and several others. IPVanish is particularly popular with torrenters and Kodi users. It has fast speeds and provides an Android APK that you can download directly to your device.

Security features include 256-bit encryption, a kill switch, and protection against leaks. IPVanish maintains no traffic or connection logs. It offers a generous limit of 10 simultaneous connections under one plan. Apps are available for Windows, MacOS, iOS, and Android, and you can configure the VPN with Linux and certain routers.

Pros:

  • Fast speeds for streaming
  • Bypasses YouTube region blocks
  • No-logs provider

Cons:

  • Doesn’t unblock as many platforms as rivals

Our score:

4 out of 5

FAST AND SECURE:IPVanish is fast and secure, and will let you stream as much YouTube as you like. Plans come with a 7-day money-back guarantee.

See our full review of IPVanish.

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6. Surfshark

SurfShark VPNunblocks youtubeTested Dec 2019

Apps Available:

  • PC
  • Mac
  • IOS
  • Android
  • Linux

Website: www.Surfshark.com

Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS

Surfshark is one of the best VPNs we’ve come across in terms of unblocking ability. It unlocks YouTube, as well as multiple Netflix catalogs, BBC iPlayer, Amazon Prime Video, and Hulu. Surfshark operates a network of over 1,000 servers in more than 60 countries and even works in China. Speeds are great, making streaming a breeze.

This VPN packs the standard security features of its top competitors, along with extras including automatic wifi protection and split tunneling. No logs are maintained. A big perk of a Surfshark subscription is the ability to connect an unlimited number of devices simultaneously. There are apps for Android, iOS, Linux, MacOS, and Windows, and you can configure the VPN to some routers.

Pros:

  • Adept at unblocking geo-restricted platforms
  • Unlimited connections
  • Works in China

Cons:

  • Some servers can be slow
  • Network is somewhat small

Our score:

4 out of 5

NO CONNECTION LIMIT:Surfshark can provide access to YouTube and lots of other platforms. It’s fast, reliable and keeps no logs. This VPN includes a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Read our in-depth Surfshark review.

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7. PrivateVPN

PrivateVPNunblocks youtubeTested Dec 2019

Apps Available:

  • PC
  • Mac
  • IOS
  • Android
  • Linux

Website: www.PrivateVPN.com

Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS

PrivateVPN is another provider with excellent unblocking abilities and fast speeds to boot. This small VPN consistently performs well in streaming tests, unblocking YouTube, Netflix, Hulu, and more. Although it only has around 150 servers, these do cover 57 countries, so you get a good choice of locations. PrivateVPN works in China.

This privacy-focused provider keeps no records of user data, so your online activity can’t be exposed. Security features include strong encryption, a kill switch (Windows only), and protection against leaks. PrivateVPN offers apps for most major operating systems: Windows, MacOS, iOS, and Android. It’s compatible with Linux and select routers via manual configuration.

Pros:

  • Fast, reliable connections
  • Keeps no logs
  • Provides strong security

Cons:

  • Small network of servers
  • Live chat isn’t available 24/7

Our score:

4.5 out of 5

BYPASS RESTRICTIONS:PrivateVPN is a small yet robust VPN with many of the most important features you get with a larger provider. All plans come with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Delve into our full review of PrivateVPN.

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Can I use a free VPN to bypass YouTube region blocks?

A free VPN isn’t a good idea for most use cases and definitely not for this one. These services aren’t suitable for streaming as they suffer from slow, laggy connections that may drop at any time. This means you’ll have an extremely poor streaming experience, if you even get to stream anything at all.

Another issue is the low data and bandwidth limits imposed by free VPN services. You’ll only be able to watch a snippet of content before you reach your cap, and then you’ll have to wait until the next day, or even next month, before you can stream more.

Free VPNs come with other problems, too, including their shady business tactics. While many create a revenue stream by serving you a ton of ads, others will collect your information, including browsing data, for sale to advertisers. Security is a concern, too, as most free VPNs don’t use nearly the same level of encryption their paid counterparts do.

We recommend skipping these all together and opting for a reputable service that delivers on all fronts.

Why is YouTube content blocked by region?

There are two main reasons why the YouTube content you’re trying to access may be region locked: licensing agreements or uploader preference.

If the content is subject to a licensing agreement (with its copyright holders), that agreement will often only apply to specific regions. Then it’s up to YouTube or the owner of the content to ensure that the content is not available in other regions. In other cases, the uploader may simply decide to only broadcast their content in certain regions.

Will a VPN help me bypass other YouTube blocks?

Are you in a country where YouTube is blocked entirely? Or does your network administrator restrict access to the platform? A VPN can help in both cases.

In China, the “Great Firewall” acts as a filter, controlling what internet traffic passes in and out of the country. The government uses it to censor the internet and block access to sites like Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube. However, if you’re using a VPN (one that works well in China), then you can connect to a VPN server in a different country and bypass these restrictions. This will allow you to enjoy YouTube as if you were located somewhere else. The same applies in other countries that block YouTube, such as Iran and North Korea.

What if YouTube is blocked in your place of work or at your school? A VPN can bypass these restrictions too. The administrator will only see that your traffic is going to the VPN server instead of YouTube’s, so it won’t block your traffic. That said, it’s worth noting that many companies and schools have policies about VPN use, so it’s worth checking before you set one up.