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Does NordVPN work with Netflix?

Can one of the best VPNs on the market evade the Netflix block?

Published onJune 8, 2023

NordVPN on Laptop Outside

If you’re wondering whether NordVPN works with Netflix, you probably know that Netflix content varies between geographical regions. For example, accessing your Netflix account in the US will give you a different range of shows and movies than accessing it in the UK.

This is for licensing reasons, but it can be frustrating if you travel abroad. What if you want to catch up on a show that isn’t available in the country you’re visiting? You might also suspect that a VPN might be a solution, as it can be used to spoof your location.

While Netflix is one of the best in the business at blocking access via VPN, NordVPN is also a leader in its industry. That makes Netflix vs. Nord a heavyweight matchup.

Let’s find out if it works, whether it’s allowed, and how to make it happen.

Does NordVPN work with Netflix?

NordVPN works with Netflix on tablets
Ryan Haines / Android Authority

Yes, it does. Or at least, most NordVPN servers do. While Netflix’s VPN-detection measures do manage to blacklist the IP addresses of some servers, it is possible to access the Netflix libraries in the US, UK, Australia, Canada, and all other regions in which Netflix operates using Nord. 

It doesn’t just work on the browser, either. You can use NordVPN on mobile to access Netflix through the iOS and Android apps. It’s actually one of the best VPNs for Netflix.

It’s worth noting that using a VPN slows down your connection speed, which has the potential to impact streaming Netflix. But being a top-tier VPN, Nord’s servers have excellent connection speeds, so it’s unlikely to impact your Netflix viewing unless you’re already on a sluggish internet connection.

Netflix is constantly updating its VPN detection capabilities, so there may come a time when NordVPN doesn’t work with Netflix quite so effectively. But you’re good for now.

Do free VPNs work with Netflix?

ExpressVPN app stock photos 4
Edgar Cervantes / Android Authority

You’re very unlikely to find a free VPN which gives you consistent and effective access to Netflix. There are a few reasons for this.

As we’ve established, Netflix is very good at identifying and blocking the IP addresses of VPN servers. Some top VPNs like Nord and ExpressVPN have enough servers to evade full detection. However, many VPNs are blocked, especially the free ones.

Many free VPNs are blocked by Netflix.

If you’re lucky enough to find a server on a free VPN that can access Netflix, then it’s likely to be too slow for effective streaming. VPN speeds are heavily affected by how many users are trying to access the servers. Not only do free VPNs have a huge number of users, but the few servers that might evade Netflix detection are likely to be very oversubscribed.

On top of those issues, free VPNs often restrict you to a limited data allowance before asking that you upgrade to a paid service. This might be as little as 100MB, which you’d burn through very quickly by streaming Netflix content.

Putting all these factors together makes streaming Netflix on a free VPN relatively difficult. 

Does Netflix allow VPNs?

NordVPN works with Netflix on any device.
Edgar Cervantes / Android Authority

It might surprise you to learn that Netflix does allow the use of VPNs, to a point. Despite the measures to prevent it, the Netflix Help Center states that “you can use a VPN with Netflix on the basic, standard, or premium plans.” This makes sense, as you might just be using a VPN in your home country. VPNs have several great benefits, such as anonymizing your location and encrypting your data. My VPN is rarely turned off, and I like to maintain that security while streaming.

Netflix does allow the use of VPNs, to a point.

Things get murkier when accessing the Netflix library of your home country from abroad. Part 4.3 of the Netflix terms of use states that “you may access the Netflix content primarily within the country in which you have established your account and only in geographic locations where we offer your subscription plan and have licensed such content.” So if you’re accessing content from abroad that isn’t licensed where you are, technically you could be in breach of these terms.

Morally you might feel ok with accessing content from your home country that you’re already paying for, but those are the rules.

Using a VPN from your home country to access Netflix libraries of other regions is a more flagrant breach of the terms. This would likely be seen as an attempt to access content that isn’t licensed in your home country, and subscription costs differ by region too. This is why Netflix goes to such lengths to detect and prevent VPN use.

Can I get in trouble?

If you are caught breaching the Netflix terms of use, then you could have your account terminated. That said, we haven’t seen any evidence of this ever happening. Netflix has a duty to make such threats, but it would be difficult to establish if it was the user’s intention to unblock content. You might not even realize you’re on a VPN. Whatever the reason, Netflix prefers to block VPN servers rather than punish their use.

It’s also worth making clear that there’s nothing illegal about using a VPN to access Netflix. It’s not equivalent to downloading pirated movies — you’re using the VPN to access a service to which you’re already subscribed. It would only be illegal if you’re located in a country in which the use of VPNs is inherently prohibited.

How to use NordVPN with Netflix

nord vpn feature
Ankit Banerjee / Android Authority

Since Netflix automatically detects the IP address being used to access it, the steps to make NordVPN work with Netflix are very straightforward. You just need to open your Netflix account with the VPN turned on.

Here’s how you do it:

  1. Go to the NordVPN site and subscribe to one of the plans.
  2. Download the NordVPN application for the device on which you want to use it. That could be Windows, macOS, iOS, Android, or another operating system.
  3. Choose a server from the location in which you’re trying to access the Netflix library and activate the VPN.
  4. Log in to your Netflix account, and you should automatically see the Netflix content of the server location.
  5. If you get an error message stating that you’re using an unblocked, disconnect the VPN and connect to another server in the same location and try again.

It’s as simple as that. If we get wind of a change to the Netflix terms of use regarding VPNs or the efficacy of NordVPN to access Netflix, we’ll keep you updated.

It might be that Netflix has blocked the specific server that you’ve connected to. Many Nord servers aren’t blocked by Netflix, but some of them are. Try connecting to a different server in the same country as the one you tried first.

If you have specific tasks for which you need a VPN, Nord is one of the best in the business, so it’s worth it to that extent. Even if you don’t need a VPN, using one enhances your security online.

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