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ExpressVPN

ExpressVPN is a well-known name across the VPN industry, offering acceptable bandwidth and speeds for cross-continental connections. They manage servers in more than 20 locations all over the United States, including servers in Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, Seattle, and Washington DC. They also manage servers in Tokyo, Japan.

This means you can configure their VPN to be connected through the fastest server available. ExpressVPN supports multiple devices across all desktop and mobile operating systems. They stick to a no logging policy.

Read ExpressVPN review »

VyprVPN

VyprVPN by Golden Frog operates their own hardware to run a VPN network of over 700 servers. The service is available to Mac, Windows, and Linux users and runs on mobile devices running iOS and Android operating systems.

You can use US-based servers located in Austin, Chicago, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, and Seattle to access a Hulu user account. They have servers in Tokyo as well.

Read VyprVPN review »

CyberGhost

CyberGhost VPN is another good choice when you need a reliable VPN that is also not blocked by Hulu. They boast more than 1,200 servers with over 200 of them located across the United States. The company operates servers in Japan as well. The total bandwidth is over 40 GBit/sec.

You can choose a server through which to access to your Hulu account using 256-bit encryption technology. A no logs policy is in place, and their VPN service is available on iOS, Android, Mac, and Windows. They also offer a malware blocker, which is a value added service, even though it does not replace a specialized antivirus software.

Read CyberGhost review »

NordVPN

Hulu does not block NordVPN, which is another top VPN service for Hulu users. They operate more than 1,000 server across the United States and over 30 servers in Japan.

They implement strict no logs policy and have an  automatic kill switch to protect your traffic in case your VPN connection drops. You can connect up to 6 devices at the same time.

Read NordVPN review »

PrivateVPN

PrivateVPN has servers in US locations such as Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, Las Vegas, Miami, and New York. They  also have servers in Tokyo, making them a good choice for a streaming Hulu VPN.

Their service supports devices running on Mac, Windows, iOS, Android, Linux, and routers. PrivateVPN keeps no traffic logs and securely encrypts your Hulu streaming connection. Up to 6 devices can be connected simultaneously.

Read PrivateVPN review »

Best VPNs that work with Hulu

International companies such as 21st Century Fox, Disney, and NBC Universal own Hulu, but they limit access to the US and Japan. Hulu will work on mobile devices (iOS, Android) but people overseas will need a Hulu VPN to access the service they pay for. Hulu, like Netflix, is blocking VPN service providers to prevent you from accessing their service via proxy altogether, so you will need to dig deeper into the available VPN options to get your TV shows and movies on the go. We’ve done this job for you though, researching and finding the best list of VPNs that work with Hulu.

Best VPN for Hulu

Source: Statista

 

Four years ago, Hulu started a campaign to prevent VPN services and apps from accessing their videos. Since then, they’ve been enforcing this restrictive policy against web proxy servers and other techniques that bypass their policy of watching Hulu only in the United States and Japan.

Opting for a random VPN will not help with Hulu blocking a good number of VPN apps. Furthermore, your VPN provider needs to have reliable and fast servers located on US soil which many VPNs don’t have. In short, you need a VPN which has also been tried and tested to work with Netflix.

What Makes a VPN good for streaming?

Bandwidth is a major factor when accessing Hulu over a virtual private network. Audio and video streaming services require high-speed internet connections. But with VPN services slowing down connection speeds, you need a Hulu VPN that offers quick speeds and slows you down the least.

Another factor to consider is the server locations that the VPN provider offers. A good VPN service should operate server locations all over the world, with multiple servers in each location. In the case of Hulu, you should look for servers located in the United States and Japan. Moreover, you should look for US-based servers in different locations across the country to be able to choose the fastest one. Accessing your Hulu account from a more remote server or a server installed closer to your physical location will provide variations in streaming speed. Having more servers to choose from is the best scenario, either way.  You can take advantage of free trial use and money-back guarantee offers to test which VPN service performs the best for your location.

Privacy & Security with Hulu

You also need to follow some basic privacy and security requirements when streaming TV shows and movies on Hulu. It is not uncommon for hackers to stream video content using the accounts of unsuspecting users. A decent VPN app, such as one of those listed above, will encrypt your connection and will check for malicious software attempting to interfere with your connection.

VPNs are not firewalls or antivirus tools, but they can provide an additional layer of privacy and security to your internet connection. Check if the VPN service implements reliable security and encryption protocols, and look for high-grade encryption.

A good number of online services log part or all of your browsing activities. Some use cookies to customize certain components of their service, but others may also log activities considered private data by most users. Check the no log policy of any VPN provider that you are considering using to access your Hulu account with.

Pay attention as well to available features such as kill switch functionality. What is kill switch in VPN? It is a feature that prevents your connection from accidental exposure. Why use a VPN service with privacy in mind if it can leak your data at any moment by accident?

Hulu Proxy Ban

Hulu uses a simple method to prevent customers who are accessing their services via VPNs – blacklists. Simply put, a blacklist is a list of banned IP addresses. Any system administrator of a sophisticated online service -Hulu being one such service – can add one or more VPN providers, a country, or even a single user to a list of blocked addresses. The service’s host server will then deny access to all the IP addresses or range of IP addresses on the list.

Any internet service provider, as well as VPN service providers, has a limited number of IP addresses it can use. Hence, a service like Hulu can block the entire range of IP addresses available to one or another VPN apps, individual users, or even internet service providers.

The solution you need in this case is very simple: you need a VPN that is not on Hulu’s blacklist.

You should bear in mind, however, that any company can block access to their service using a kind of geofencing restrictions or geo-restrictions, and there is no guarantee that Hulu will not add a certain provider to their blacklist at any given moment in the future. Furthermore, there are plenty of even more advanced methods that could be used to block a device or user, and you do not want your paid Hulu user account being blocked for violating certain Hulu terms. So, don’t experiment with unproven and obscure VPN apps to access your Hulu service. We will discuss alternatives to VPN access in the next section.

VPN vs Smart DNS Proxy

A smart DNS proxy is an alternative to VPN services, and it works by changing the DNS of your device. The smart DNS proxy re-routes your traffic through a dedicated proxy server that is operating in the country where the website you are trying to access is located. This is a server method similar to the one used by VPN service providers.

The main difference between a smart DNS proxy and a VPN is that smart DNS does not encrypt your connection. Using smart DNS proxy may provide you with faster speeds in certain scenarios, but it is more dangerous in terms of online privacy and security.

Furthermore, Hulu warns on their website that if you get an “Error playing this video” error message during playback, their system has determined that your computer is behind an anonymous proxy. The only method to remove that message is to disable the proxy before you can access videos on Hulu again. A smart DNS may not be considered an anonymizer by default, but it is very likely that Hulu systems would decide the opposite.

Can I Use a Free VPN to Watch Hulu?

Free VPNs are not a good choice to use to access your Hulu service for a number of reasons. Most of them finance their operations by selling user data and browsing history. Also, most of those services are on Hulu’s list of banned VPN apps.

Of course, you may eventually find a free VPN that works on Hulu, but you generally sacrifice your privacy and security in a case like this. As we mentioned before, a free VPN has no other source of financing other than selling user data, injecting tracking software into your browser, or installing cookies that track all your online actions. In theory, one can finance such a VPN service by selling ads, but who wants to view ads while watching a movie online on Hulu?

VPNs that don’t work with Hulu

From our testing, these paid VPN providers are currently not able to work with Hulu if you’re overseas.

  • CactusVPN
  • Hola
  • Hotspot Shield
  • IPVanish
  • IronSocket
  • Private Internet Access (PIA)
  • PureVPN
  • Tunnelbear
  • Unotelly

You should be aware the above list can be extended to cover most of the currently available VPN services out there.

More on Hulu

Hulu no longer provides a free service plan for watching movies and TV shows. Their plans start at $7.99 a month for streaming and $39.99 for streaming + Live TV service. Hulu is a favorite choice for customers wanting to watch shows by leading third-party entertainment companies whose content is accessible via the Hulu platform.

Best VPN for Hulu

Source: Statista

A subscription to Hulu with Live TV gives you access to live and on-demand TV from over 50 top channels (including sports, news, and any available local TV channels). You can check available channels here, and you also get unlimited access to the Hulu streaming library.

 

Conclusion

If you’re based in the U.S or Japan, have a Hulu subscription and want to watch Hulu content when abroad, a VPN is a must. But Hulu, like Netflix, is actively blocking many VPN providers, so not all VPNs are equal and will give you access. Our list of recommended Hulu VPNs have all been tested and proven to work with Hulu; moreover, they offer quick speeds vital for streaming together with the privacy and security tools that VPNs should offer.

 

Written by: Kiril V. Kirilov

Kiril V. Kirilov is a professional writer and content strategist who covers business and IT topics for close to two decades. He is also interested in the intersection of business and tech.

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