How to Unblock Netflix on Vacation

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Picture this – you just finished a long day of sightseeing, got back to your hotel, took a hot bath, and are ready to get comfy with your favorite Netflix series before calling it a night.

But uh oh – when you try to connect to Netflix, you can’t access the shows you want.

Wait – Isn’t Netflix Available Worldwide?

Yes and no.

Netflix offers its services in over 190 countries, so the service is available worldwide.

However, its content libraries are not.

If you try to watch Netflix US content in Italy, for example, it won’t work. You’ll automatically get redirected to Netflix’s Italian content library instead.

And we all know the US library is the best one. With it, you get around 1,300+ shows and 4,300+ movies.

Even statistics prove that the US library has the most variety – with approximately 5,932 pieces of content to choose from.

So, if you’re from the US and you plan on vacationing in Europe this Christmas or the upcoming summer, you won’t be able to watch your favorite Netflix series.

Instead, you’ll have to settle for the content library of the country you’re visiting, and hope you get access to the same movies and shows.

How Does Netflix Restrict Your Access?

Now that you know Netflix enforces content restrictions, you’re probably wondering – how do they actually do that?

It’s pretty simple – they use geo-restrictions, a form of content control technology that allows them to restrict user access or redirect users to other web pages based on their geographical location.

And Netflix knows your geo-location because it can see your real IP address, which tells them exactly what country and city you live in.

Why Does Netflix Use Geo-Restrictions?

It mostly has to do with copyright.

While Netflix does own some of the shows on display, a large number of them are owned by third-parties. And those third-parties hold the rights to the shows, so they decide whether or not Netflix can make them available in specific countries.

And that’s actually where licensing regulations come into play. Basically, if Netflix were to make all of their content available worldwide, they’d need to buy licensing rights in every single country for every show.

Similar to what they already did – but much more expensive.

The same goes for the copyright holders too.

And I mean, there’s no data showing the demand for specific US shows around the world. So Netflix doesn’t have a way to guarantee they will make a profit.

But while all of those are decent arguments, having your vacation ruined by not being able to relax with your favorite series is not okay at all.

How to Unblock Netflix Abroad – Just Use a VPN

A VPN is an online service that hides your IP address. That alone is enough to help you unblock Netflix anywhere in the world. Since the platform won’t know your real IP address, it won’t be able to see your geo-location.

So, if you want to unblock Netflix US content while traveling in Mexico or Italy, all you need to do is connect to a US VPN server. When you do that, the server replaces your IP address with its own, and Netflix will think you have a US IP address.

A VPN also encrypts your traffic, which can be helpful if you want to make sure nobody can spy on your Netflix binging sessions.

What About the “You Seem to Be Using an Unblocker or Proxy” Error?

Sometimes, Netflix might display this error if you try accessing it with a VPN or a proxy server.

That happens because Netflix detects that you’re using a service that lets you circumvent their geo-blocks.

Usually, they know you’re doing that because they’ve either blacklisted a popular VPN or proxy provider, or they’ve blocked connections from a specific IP range which Netflix associates with proxy and VPN servers.

Normally, you’ll get this error if you use an unreliable VPN provider, a free VPN service, or a free proxy service.

Need Help Finding a Good VPN for Netflix?

With a decent provider by your side, you don’t need to worry about Netflix detecting that you’re trying to unblock their content.

Finding one can be tough, though – there are hundreds of providers on the market, and you have to look up if each one can actually unblock Netflix.

And let’s face it – that’s the last thing you want to do before going on vacation.

Well, I’m going to make things easier for you so that you can focus on planning your itinerary and packing instead – here’s a list of the best VPNs for Netflix when abroad. The guide tested over 100 VPN services to see which ones actually work.

How Else Can You Unblock Netflix on Vacation?

A Smart DNS is also a good option.

It’s an online service that hides your DNS address (which also reveals your geo-location), and routes your traffic through a DNS server. It also uses proxy servers to spoof your geo-location.

That and the service intercepts your connection requests to Netflix, and hides any info that leaks your geo-location.

Some VPN providers offer Smart DNS services alongside VPN services. That’s a nice combo since you can switch to a different unblocking method if one of them stops working.

Can’t You Also Use Tor?

Well, you could do that. Tor is an anonymity network, and it hides your IP address too. So Netflix won’t know what your geo-location is.

Plus, Tor is free to use, so that’s definitely nice.

However, your hotel might be able to see you’re using Tor, and they might kick you off the network. Also, the speeds you’ll get will be pretty bad.

But here’s the main problem – I don’t think you’ll manage to unblock Netflix with Tor. According to the devs themselves, Netflix is one of the many services that successfully blocks Tor. If you try to use the service, you’ll just get an error message.