Best VPN to use overseas?
January 6, 2018 10:45 AM   Subscribe

Traveling in Asia for a bit and would like to access Hulu/Netflix/Amazon video on my MacBook laptop whole I'm there. What VPN would be best for this? Easier configuration is better but I am capable of some command line stuff if necessary.
posted by rednikki to Computers & Internet (9 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Can only speak to Japan, but as of 2016 - Netflix will continue to work without a VPN in Japan, you'll just have access to their Japanese catalog instead. But it's got almost the whole US catalog in it and gets most of the same release dates, so that shouldn't hamper you too much. The PIA vpn could not get me into my Hulu account, and I don't think I tried Amazon.
posted by Caravantea at 11:00 AM on January 6, 2018

If you want it to work in China, then ExpressVPN is the only one of my VPNs currently working. This changes regularly, however.
posted by frumiousb at 11:18 AM on January 6, 2018 [1 favorite]

Hulu has clamped down pretty hard on VPNs. The most common method of detection is too many users coming from the same outbound IP addresses.

So, for Hulu at least, you might want to consider a single-user VPN - perhaps one you create at home using a router. I've done it before with my Netgear R7000 and it worked pretty well.

Another tip is to set your PC's clock to the time at home, and not your local time. Some of the player apps will compare the two to see if you're away from home and in what country/timezone.
posted by JoeZydeco at 11:20 AM on January 6, 2018

I don't have an answer for you, but I want to make sure you've seen That One Privacy Guy's VPN information and comparison site, which was helpful to me.
posted by smammy at 5:13 PM on January 6, 2018

I can't directly help you but I can tell you that BBC iPlayer is blocked on Private Internet Access. Which suggests that PIA aren't making much of an effort to get around companies which do geoblocking.

So I wouldn't be surprised if PIA doesn't work for Hulu, Netflix and Amazon video too.
posted by mr_silver at 12:32 AM on January 7, 2018

I’ve used unblock-us from Canada to access Hulu, and it worked well. It has the advantage of being a dns-based solution, so you don’t get the bandwidth slowdown typical of vpns.

Otherwise, creating a 5$/month “droplet” (i.e., virtual machine instance) on Digital Ocean, and then creating a socks proxy through it using ssh (instructions here, it ends up being a single line in the terminal) is a great solution as well, as that will cheaply place you “within” the US.
posted by vert canard at 2:03 AM on January 7, 2018 [1 favorite]

ExpressVPN worked for me in China but was too slow for YouTube without lots of buffering
posted by JonB at 3:31 AM on January 7, 2018

"Traveling in Asia for a bit"
Asia is big. Does your trip include China? Few VPNs work in China. I can recommend Astril
posted by yoyo_nyc at 5:45 AM on January 7, 2018

I've been using ExpressVPN from the access various non-U.S. region-locked streaming sites and have yet to encounter a blocked connection. I'm pretty impressed because I know that BBC, Netflix and Hulu have been very proactive lately about blocking access when they discover it.
posted by soren_lorensen at 11:16 AM on January 7, 2018

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