10 Best VPNs for Australia
In recent years, Australia has seen alarming developments in data retention laws, geo-restrictions, website blocking, and ISP as well as government monitoring. All these changes have led to the Great South Land being a ripe market for Virtual Private Networks, and here we’ll help you choose the best VPN for Australia.
From there, you can restore your internet freedom and enhance your privacy as well as security. You will no longer have to worry about:
- Geo-restrictions imposed by streaming services like Netflix and BBC iPlayer
- Blocking of torrent sites by Australian ISPs
- ISP throttling
- Your ISP snooping on your online activities, among others.
However, there are hundreds of VPNs in the market, and you need to choose carefully to get the best VPN for Australia. We have thoroughly tested various VPNs and below are the best 10 VPNs for Australia: 5 paid and 5 free ones.
Table of contents:
- ExpressVPN: A reputable service with tons of countries covered. Superb security and features.
- NordVPN: Suitable for both security purposes and for watching geo-restricted streaming content.
- Surfshark: A very cheap VPN that still upholds high privacy standards and won’t let you down.
- CyberGhost VPN: Has an unmatched number of countries and servers combined.
- Private Internet Access: Uses Shadowsocks protocol to hide the use of a VPN. Has many settings.
- ProtonVPN: The most generous of the free VPNs with unlimited traffic and 3 locations.
- Windscribe: Gives you 10 Gb each month but has slow speeds.
- Hide.me: Is faster but only provides 2 Gb monthly.
- HotspotShield: A well-known service that grants you 500 Mb per day.
- TunnelBear: 500-1500 Mb per month, allows torrenting.
- Warning! Changes happen in the VPN market and sometimes, quite unexpectedly. Be sure to regularly check this article for updates.
There are more than a few reasons to use a virtual private network in Australia.
To restore your privacy
Australia is currently one of the most privacy-invasive countries in the world. First, it is a member of the UKUSA agreement which permits the 14 Eyes countries involved to commit surveillance over its citizens. Though this movement was formed to share intelligence meant to combat terrorism, it has always been used to monitor citizens’ online activities.
Further, the government imposed a data retention law in 2015 countries that requires Australian ISPs to record and save metadata for two years. According to the law, here is the metadata always collected from users:
- Contacts who you called, sent a message or e-mail
- Dates of calls, e-mailing and texting
- E-mail addresses
- How much data you pass through the network
- Location logs
- User IP addresses
Apart from that, there’s no law that prevents ISPs from going all the way and collecting data about your online activities, and this data is not always secure from security breaches.
The only thing you can do to prevent your ISP and government from snooping on you is using a reliable VPN. Since a VPN encrypts your activities, your ISP won’t be able to make sense of your traffic as all they’ll see will be some garbled mess.
Further, your DNS requests will not pass through your ISP anymore as long as you use a VPN with IPv6 and DNS Leak protection.
Torrenting copyrighted material is a crime in Australia, and the government has implemented various policies to prevent illegal downloads. One of the policies is the ban of 180+ torrenting sites through Australian ISPs.
To access sites such as ThePirateBay, Torrentz, TorrentHound, IsoHunt, SolarMovie, etc. you need to use a VPN. When you connect to a VPN, your traffic is securely tunneled to a remote server of your choosing. This server then spoofs your real IP address and gives you a new online identity.
Your internet traffic now appears to be coming from the new region. For example, if you have connected to a server in Thailand, you will now have a Thai IP address. From there, torrent sites will be unblocked, and you can stream or download files anonymously.
However, note that some VPNs don’t allow torrent traffic to pass through their servers, and others only allow you to torrent legal files. Since drawing a line between legal and illegal is near impossible, opt for a VPN that doesn’t limit what you can access.
Note: VPN-Review doesn’t promote access to illegal content, and the information provided here is only meant to be educational. To stay safe, always use a secure VPN for torrenting.
Unblock Netflix US and other streaming services
Australia is often left out when it comes to streaming content, and that’s why most Aussies rely on torrents for movies and TV shows. For example, services like Hulu, HBO GO, CW TV, Sky Go, BBC iPlayer, ITV, and more are not accessible within the country.
While Netflix is obviously available, the Australian Netflix only has 445 TV Shows and 1599 movies according to Finder.com latest statistics. The American Netflix on the other hand has 1326 TV Shows and 4339 movies. This is quite a huge difference, and it’s the reason why most people always look for how to unblock US Netflix.
You can easily unblock Netflix US with these best VPNs for Netflix.
The most important step is just to make sure that you choose a VPN that can actually unblock Netflix since the streaming service blocks the use of VPNs on its platform. While all the above-listed VPNs unblock Netflix US, Surfshark and ExpressVPN also give you the chance to unblock Netflix content only available in other countries.
Get an Australian IP address
If you are an Australian expat or you have traveled abroad for holidays or for business, you know that you can no longer access some Australian services. For example, you can no longer watch Australian TV, and if there’s a TV show you were watching which is not available in your current country, you won’t have access anymore.
You won’t have to worry about those geo-restrictions as you can get an Australian IP address with a VPN. Just by connecting to a server in Australia, you’ll be able to access streaming platforms such as Channel 7, 9 Now, Stan, Foxtel Now, etc.
During our analysis, we rated the VPNs using the following criteria:
- Ease of use
- Size of the server network (and servers in APAC)
- Speeds of the VPN
- Privacy and security levels
- Features offered
- Streaming services it works with
- Overall performance
Considering the above and various other factors, here’s our list of the best VPNs for Australia.
Best VPNs for Australia: Main characteristics comparison
|Service||Score (out of 10)||Speed, Mbps||Country selection||Logging
|Torrenting||Price (per month)|
|ExpressVPN||10||90+||94||No logs + diskless servers||Yes||$6.67|
|NordVPN||10||70+||59||No logs + diskless servers||Yes||$3.30|
- Excellent client apps
- Zero logs & solid security
ExpressVPN is registered in the British Virgin Islands which is a region without any invasive privacy laws. This is great as it helps the VPN maintain a strict zero-logs policy and offer superb privacy.
The VPN has an impressive server network that consists of 3,000+ servers spread across 160 locations in 94 countries, and the Asia Pacific region is covered with more than 40+ servers.
The VPN has consistently performed well when it comes to torrenting. You can unblock any torrent site in Australia and torrent safely and anonymously. You can also unblock any streaming service and watch in full HD and UHD thanks to the VPN’s excellent speeds.
ExpressVPN can be installed on Windows, Mac, Linux, Android, iOS, Firestick, and routers.
|1 month||6 months||1 year|
- 24/7 live chat support
- Offers SmartDNS services
- Only 3 simultaneous connections
- Keeps absolutely zero logs
- Has the biggest number of servers
NordVPN is known for having the largest number of servers in the industry. It has 5,000+ servers distributed across 62 countries. A whopping 549 of these servers are located in the Asia Pacific region, with Australia having 224 of them.
Apart from the huge server network, NordVPN also offers excellent privacy and security. The VPN is registered in Panama which is a privacy-friendly country. NordVPN maximizes this and keeps zero usage as well as connection logs.
The VPN has hundreds of servers in 45 countries dedicated to torrenting, and you can use them to unblock any torrenting site in Australia.
NordVPN can be installed on Windows, MacOS, Linux, Android, iOS, Android TV, Chrome, and Firefox.
|1 month||1 year||2 years|
(2022 Winter promotion)
- Up to 6 simultaneous connections
- Offers SmartDNS services
- High cost for month-to-month users
- Good speeds
- Safe jurisdiction
- No logs
Surfshark may not have as many servers as NordVPN – 1700+ in 61+ countries – but it makes up for it with its affordability. You’d be hard-pressed to find another VPN as cheap as this one that offers features at least half as good as Surfshark’s.
Despite not having a super impressive server park, Surfshark does provide pretty good coverage. For example, there are 13 countries in the Asia Pacific region where it has servers and 5 locations in Australia alone.
Surfshark takes its customers’ safety very seriously. First off, it’s located in the offshore jurisdiction of the British Virgin Islands. Secondly, it has a kill switch function and an ad blocker in its app. Thirdly, it uses the AES 256-bit encryption. And finally, it keeps no user logs at all.
|1 month||6 months||2 years|
- 7-day free trial and 30-day money-back guarantee
- Very affordable
- Limited server network
- 1-day free premium trial
- Keeps absolutely zero logs
- 7 simultaneous connections
CyberGhost VPN has greatly improved within the last year, and it’s now one of the best VPNs for Australia. It currently has a server network of 5944 servers in 90 countries. 76 of these servers are located in Australia.
The new CyberGhost VPN clients have a streaming mode that allows you to choose from servers dedicated to various tasks. One of modes is torrenting, from which you can choose a server to unblock torrent sites in Australia.
The VPN can be installed on Windows, Linux, Android, iOS, Firestick / Android Smart TVs, Chrome, and Firefox.
|1 month||1 year||2 years||3 years|
- 45-day money-back guarantee
- Allows payments with bitcoin
- Live chat support is not available 24/7
- 3200+ servers
- Fast speeds
PIA, despite its recent change of owner that caused some worries among the VPN aficionados worldwide, remains one of the best providers thanks to its incredible amount of options.
For example, it allows you to change literally everything about the VPN connection you can imagine, down to disabling encryption at all.
|1 month||1 year||2 years|
- Highly advanced settings
- Allows torrenting
- Dubious owner
We have also found 5 relatively good free VPNs for you to consider.
Warning: some free VPNs end up selling your data to third-parties which compromises the whole idea of using a VPN. Apart from that, a study conducted by Australia’s Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) found free VPNs to be very dangerous. Out of the 234 ‘Free’ VPN Android apps they tested, 38% of them contained some form of additional malware.
No traffic limit and respectable security. Quite slow speeds on the other hand.
Windscribe is also slow on its free version. However, it has 10 Gb of monthly traffic.
At the cost of a lower traffic limit (2 Gb), hide.me provides slightly speedier service.
Has a sizable traffic limit of 500 Mb per day. On the other hand, there are some problems with its mobile free version as it may subscribe you to a paid one after 1 week of using it.
TunnelBear has the lowest traffic limit imaginable: just 500 Mb per month. In this light, its permission to torrent looks almost like a mockery.
? Are VPNs legal in Australia?
Yes, VPNs are completely legal in Australia. Even though The Copyright Amendment Bill 2015 can be a little scary, there’s nothing in Australian laws and regulations that forbid the use of VPNs.
? How do I set a VPN up in Australia?
Here’s what you need to do to get started:
- Create an account with one of the best VPNs for Australia (we suggest ExpressVPN). Note that you will need to pick a subscription plan.
- Download the VPN app for your device and then install it just like any other app.
- After installation, log in using your credentials from step 1. If you are using a PC, you’ll need to get your ExpressVPN activation code from the dashboard or from your registration email.
- Connect to a server in a location of your choice. Note that choosing a server in a nearby country will help maximize your speed.
? What if my device doesn’t support a VPN?
You can look into the following things:
- Choose a VPN with SmartDNS (such as ExpressVPN).
- Set your VPN up on a router.
- Share your PC’s VPN connection.