Hey, it’s not just Americans who appreciate their Netflix catalogue–Germans are also huge fans of US content, although though they’re typically geoblocked out of their favorite streams. But, with the right VPN, you can spoof a US IP address and bypass the dreaded Netflix proxy error. We show you how in today’s article.
If you live, work, or travel to Germany often, and you like to stream Netflix titles from their U.S. catalogue – you’ll have a problem doing so. Although the company offers customized access in over 190 countries, including Germany, the titles you have access to vary widely when compared to those available in the U.S. Since the vast majority of Netflix content is produced in the U.S., the American library offers far superior access to shows than elsewhere.
Because of copyright laws, the only way to view these is by having an IP address located in the U.S. VPNs can help you bypass geo-blocks like this, but unfortunately, not all VPNs consistently work to unblock Netflix. In fact, due to sophisticated VPN blocking methods employed by Netflix and other major streaming sites, most providers are unable to break through.
Fortunately for you, we’ve got a list of VPNs with a strong track record of unblocking the US Netflix from Germany (or anywhere else in the world). Our guide will start with a checklist of everything you’ll need to get started, then we’ll present the details of each of our recommended providers. We’ll wrap up with how to use your shiny new tool to unlock a world of entertainment options via Netflix, along with some troubleshooting tips in case things don’t go so smoothly.
What you’ll need before you get started
Before you can continue, there are a few things that you’re going to need to be able to access the U.S. catalogue of Netflix titles:
- A Netflix subscription – This one should be obvious. Netflix is a subscription service, so you pay a small monthly fee for access to their movies and T.V. shows. If you aren’t already subscribed, visit their website and make an account. You can do this on your regular internet connection in Germany without fear of messing anything up for later – access to titles is handled separately from subscriptions.
- A PC or Mac with a browser – Netflix is very good at blocking out-of-country apps, so to unblock it in Germany you’ll need to use the web version. Doing so on your smartphone or tablet’s browser can work, but a computer will give you the best streaming experience.
- A VPN that can make it through – Netflix actively blocks all proxies and most VPNs. They do this by keeping a master list of all the IP addresses employed by VPN services; if you try to use an IP that’s on this list, they’ll deny it. VPNs that can bypass Netflix’s blocks actively change their IP lists often to consistently dodge this.
The list of VPNs in the next section have a proven track record of getting into Netflix’s U.S. library. However, because Netflix is so persist about blocking VPNs, no provider can guarantee access. If a solution doesn’t work for you, be patient. Each of these services is dedicated to working for you, and will likely soon be able to grant you access again.
Unblock U.S. Netflix from Germany with these VPNs
Before we dive into the what/when/where/why/how, here’s a quick overview of a few VPNs that meet our above criteria. These are the top VPNs for unblocking the U.S. Netflix library from Germany:
ExpressVPN has a network of more than 3,000 servers across 94 countries, including many in the United States. This means that you have access to a huge network of IP addresses – plenty of options to pick from to bypass Netflix’s VPN blocker. ExpressVPN is one of the fastest on the market, giving you buffer-free streaming, fast downloads, and seamless browsing. Because they’re dedicated to helping you access Netflix, if you have any problems accessing the U.S. library from Germany, just reach out to customer service and they’ll do everything they can to resolve the issue.
ExpressVPN has military-grade 256-bit AES encryption with 5 security protocols designed to help you maximize not only your privacy, but you ability to get through censorship firewalls and geo-blocks. They’ve also got a strong logging policy, with no records kept on your traffic, DNS requests, IP addresses, or browsing history. You can use it with Windows, Mac, and Linux, as well as Chrome, Firefox, and Safari browser extensions if you only want to use the VPN while in your browser.
With a built-in speed test, you can check on your chosen node’s speed before you use it to make sure that your streaming experience will be pleasant. And with a DNS leak test and automatic kill switch, your information will be kept safe in case of an accidental drop.
All of this put together makes ExpressVPN perfect for accessing Netflix – as well as many other streaming services – from Germany.
Read our full ExpressVPN review.
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- Fast serves with minimal speed loss
- OpenVPN, IPSec & IKEv2 Encryption
- No logging policy well enforced
- 24/7 Chat Support.
- Power-users configuration options.
With NordVPN, you get access to another massive network: 5,500+ servers in 59 countries, including the U.S. It’s one of the biggest providers in the industry and is always growing. NordVPN has nearly unbreakable 256-bit AES encryption and specialty servers that are dedicated to beating shared IP blacklists – like those employed by Netflix. Some other specialty servers include Onion over VPN, Anti-DDoS, Double VPN, P2P, and Obfuscated servers. These advanced features – and more – make NordVPN one of the most reliable providers for accessing Netflix.
Another one of the fastest VPNs available, NordVPN has no restrictions on bandwidth or speed and will never throttle your connection. They also don’t keep any logs on traffic, IP addresses, timestamps, bandwidth, or browsing history – so your data stays completely private. With a wide software availability, you can rest assured that you’ll be able to install it on your preferred device.
NordVPN has a neat feature, too: a graphical server map, so picking your U.S. server for Netflix couldn’t be easier. And with optional security toggles for Windows, Mac, and Android that block ads and malware, as well as a DNS leak test and kill switch, you get well-rounded security.
Read our full NordVPN review.
- Servers optimized for unblocking Netflix
- 5,400+ servers globally
- Connect up to 6 devices at once
- Extra-secure Double VPN for data encryption
- 24/7 Chat Support.
- They can take 30 days to process refunds.
When you’re hankering for a Netflix binge, the last thing you want is to get lost amidst endless confusing VPN settings. Enter CyberGhost, the provider which has refined its user experience to a minimalist art form. All you’ve got to do is launch your app, pick “Unblock Streaming” from among the short list of six preset configuration profiles, and let CyberGhost handle establishing an optimized VPN connection for the task at hand. This elegance in design belies powerful privacy protections under the hood, including unbreakable 256-bit AES encryption, as well as one of the best no-logging policies we’ve seen anywhere (not even your sign-up email is stored!)
Of course, if you prefer a more hands-on approach to managing your VPN, CyberGhost gets out of the way and presents its advanced options in a simple list of toggles. What’s more, you’ll have a massive network of proxy servers to choose from, encompassing over 5,900 servers in 90 countries. An incredible 600+ servers dot the continental U.S., giving you ample options to get an American IP address. With unlimited bandwidth and zero speed caps or throttling, you’ll enjoy buffer-free streams–even in HD and 4K.
Read our full CyberGhost review.
- Works with Netflix
- 3,600+ servers in 55+ countries
- Robust encryption standards
- Zero logs
- 45-days 'No-hassle' money back guarante.
- IPv6 WebRTC leak in macOS
- Some streaming sites cannot be unblocked.
PrivateVPN is an incredibly capable VPN perhaps best known for its ability to provide steady access to U.S. Netflix. At first glance, this provider’s server network isn’t much to write home about: just over 150 servers in 60+ countries. With 9 servers located in the U.S., each equipped with (at least) 1 Gbps connections, you’ll enjoy surprisingly smooth streams, even in HD and 4K. PrivateVPN goes a step further with its servers: by labeling various nodes with markers like ?Netflix?, ?Hulu?, ?BBC?, you’ll know at a glance which connections are most likely to get you through the VPN blocks and onto your favorite content.
The core VPN privacy provisions are fully intact, as well. 2048-bit encryption (with AES-256) requires hackers to try more keys than there are atoms in the known universe, while a strong no-logging policy covers any tracks that might be used to identify you based on your activity.
Dedicated software is available for desktop computers, mobile devices, routers, video game consoles an multimedia boxes. With up to 6 simultaneous connections, you and the whole family can enjoy Netflix on your favorite device without issue.
How to view U.S. Netflix from Germany
Americans don’t need to the be only ones enjoying the wider array of titles offered in the U.S. Netflix library. Once you’ve done your research and picked a VPN with a strong track record of breaking through Netflix’s restrictions, then you can start bypassing the geo-blocks and enjoy U.S. Netflix titles. Just follow these steps to get your VPN up and running, then dig into the specifics for unblocking Netflix:
- First, sign up with a provider that works with Netflix. Follow one of the links above to gain access to the exclusive deals offered to our readers. Then, follow through their checkout process and pay with your favorite method.
- Next, download and install the VPN onto your chosen device. If you’ve chosen to do so on your mobile device, you may have to visit the app store. To make sure that you download the correct one (and not a fake), follow the link directly from your VPN’s website. Once you’ve done that, launch the app and sign in with your VPN account details.
- Most VPNs will automatically connect you to the fastest available server. Since servers that are closer to your physical location tend to be faster, this won’t work for unblocking the U.S. Netflix library when you’re in Germany and you’ll have to find a server manually. Open the VPN’s server list and search for a USA server. In ExpressVPN, you can type “USA” or a specific U.S. city into the search bar; NordVPN has a graphical map that you can use to pick a server in the States. Once you’ve picked a node, connect to it – this should only take a few moments to resolve.
- Before you launch Netflix in your web browser, visit ipleak.net. This site will automatically run an IP address lookup on your device. On the screen, you should see a box with a long string of numbers at the top of it (your IP). Just below these numbers, there should be a country name – i.e. “United States.” This is your country of origin. If it says “United States”, then you’re securely connected; if not, try to connect to the same or a different server again.
- Once you’ve tested your IP address, open up netflix.com and login to your account. It should stream U.S. content without a problem!
Tips and troubleshooting
Because of Netflix’s active efforts to block VPNs, you’ll eventually run into problems getting access. Here are some troubleshooting tips to help you when that happens:
- Clear your browser’s cache and cookies – Netflix stores cookies, which are used to block access when you switch to a different Netflix region.
- Find a specific server – Some VPNS have servers that are best for specific uses – like Netflix. If they aren’t clearly labeled as being best for Netflix, you can contact your VPN’s support team to get an updated list.
- Contact support – When in doubt, you can always contact your VPN’s support team. They can let you know your options, walk you through service-specific trouble-shooting steps, or simply let you know if all their servers are experiencing problems.
Why can’t I view all of Netflix’s titles?
Netflix is available in 190 countries – but each country’s library is different, and geo-restrictions mean you can’t view another country’s library of titles without being physically in that country. The VPNs that can make it through Netflix’s blocks can help you do that, but they’re highly sophisticated.
RELATED READING: Try these secret codes to unlock thousands of hidden Netflix streams
In 2017, Netflix began to aggressively block VPNs. VPN users who had previously been able to access geo-blocked content were suddenly faced with a “Netflix proxy error” message. Netflix continued to blacklist an increasing number of IP addresses, which quickly whittled down the field of VPNs that could make it through and allow users to continue accessing geo-restricted content.
Netflix continues to add IP addresses, constantly attempting to stay ahead of the few VPNs that can still punch through their blocks. It has become increasingly difficult to do so, making it hard for those who were using a VPN to secure their online privacy or were temporarily abroad.
Netflix is beholden to copyright laws. Whenever they want to make a move or TV show available to stream, they have to pay the copyright holder a fee to obtain the right to stream the title. O.K., so what’s the big deal?
Here’s the kicker – Netflix has to pay the copyright holder a separate fee for each country they’d like to stream the title in. This means that Netflix has to pay a company one fee to stream a show in the U.S., another company to stream it in Germany, another to stream it in France… and so on. This adds up quickly.
Because of the compounding cost, there are some movies and shows that are simply too expensive or inconvenient for Netflix to buy the rights in every country they are available in. Between U.S. and German copyright laws, you wind up with some stiff opposition, so there’s a stark contrast between the libraries of available titles in these countries. And since so many Netflix titles are produced in the U.S., there are a lot more available there.
With such a large selection of TV shows and movies that are available only in the U.S. Netflix catalogue, it’s no wonder many users turn to VPNs to allow them access it. But since Netflix recognizes this and has taken stringent measures to stop this, many German users won’t be able to get through with an ordinary VPN. But with this guide, we’ve showed you how to access the U.S. Netflix library with some VPNs that have proven capable in this area. All that’s left is to pick one, follow the steps we laid out, and get streaming U.S. titles – today.
Have you tried VPNs in the past to unblock U.S. Netflix titles in Germany? Were you successful? Did you find yourself suddenly unable to do so one day? Let us know your experience in the comments below.
If you need a VPN for a short while when traveling for example, you can get our top ranked VPN free of charge. ExpressVPN includes a 30-day money-back guarantee. You will need to pay for the subscription, that’s a fact, but it allows full access for 30 days and then you cancel for a full refund. Their no-questions-asked cancellation policy lives up to its name.