5 Best VPNs for Expats

VPN services allow users to access country specific content such as streaming media services by redirecting traffic through remote servers.  They can be used to conceal your location and most use encryption to ensure user data remains safe.  Many can bypass censorship and allow users to remain anonymous in countries that exercise strict control over internet use.

The Best VPNs for Expats

  1. Overplay
  2. UnblockUs
  3. OkayFreedom
  4. TvWhenAway

For expats, however, VPN services are most commonly used to access region locked content from their home country such as BBC iPlayer, 4oD or NetFlix, or sports (If you’re mainly into sports, take a look at this guide to streaming the Premier League online). Most services work by connecting you to a server in the country of your choice, then routing your internet use through it.  This means your computer will appear to be in the country you have chosen, allowing you to access country specific content. As this is a roundup of the best VPN services for expats and not, necessarily, expert users, we’ve based our list on ease of use, performance and customer service rather than specialist features and high security. Several of the services offer free trials and money back guarantees.


Best VPNs for Expats Summary

*All prices shown in US dollars

Advertiser disclosure


Expat Telly



  • PROS
  • Very easy to set up
  • Extremely fast connections
  • Quick technical support
  • CONS
  • No free trial
  • Only UK and USA servers
  • Not for everyone
  • Those concerned with security and expert features should look elsewhere

Number one on our list is Expat telly, which provides a single, easy to set up, service for $12.35 for a single month or $74.12 for a year. This is a generous discount, and the service can be used on unlimited devices within a household.

They provide very high speeds, making this perfect for anyone who wants to stream media from the UK or USA, although these are the only servers available. Customer service is limited to email, but when we contacted them they got back to us within hours or, in one instance, just a few minutes.

Get started with Expat Telly Today!

Visit Expat Telly »

2nd place



Overplay Logo

  • PROS
  • Easy to set up
  • Excellent technical support
  • No cap on speed or data usage
  • No logs of user’s data kept
  • Servers in 48 countries
  • CONS
  • No money back guarantee
  • No recurring payment option in paypal

Overplay offers both Global VPN and Smart DNS, both of which are easy to set up and affordable.  There is a member’s area with 24*7 technical support chat and knowledgeable reps.  Servers are located in 48 countries and provide excellent speeds using local connections and there are no speed or bandwidth limitations.

Smart DNS is priced at $4.99/ month and provides high speed connections for those who just want to access content such as streaming media etc. but aren’t worried about privacy. Global VPN costs $9.99/ month and provides more security by encrypting data.  It allows access to all websites and protocols whilst keeping your data safe wherever you are using it, including public hot-spots.

Visit Overplay »

3rd place



Unblockus Logo

  • PROS
  • No obligation free trial
  • Compatible with loads of devices
  • Excellent Customer service
  • CONS
  • Always on
  • You must change the system settings to turn it off
  • Less secure than a VPN
  • Limited functionality

Unblockus has a very clear and user friendly website that offers one service at a fixed rate of $4.99/ month, with no discounts for longer commitments, but does offer a 7 day free trial that requires nothing more than an email address. The service is not a traditional VPN, and to use it you have to reconfigure your network settings and, whilst relatively simple for an average user, means all your web traffic is routed through Unblockus until you manually reset your network settings.

Unblockus doesn’t slow your internet connection down in any noticeable way, so for accessing location specific content such as BBC iplayer or Netflix, Unblockus is an excellent option, although lack of other features will put some people off.

Visit Unblockus »

4th place



OkayFreedom Logo

  • PROS
  • Superb performance
  • Completely free option
  • Money back guarantee
  • CONS
  • Only available for Windows
  • Premium version only available as an annual subscription
  • Limited support

OkayFreedom offers up to 1Gb of data transfer per month completely free, which is great if you want to see if it suits your needs, but won’t last long if you’re streaming HD content. They state that they don’t keep any logs, which is good news for users who are concerned with online privacy and setting up the service is very easy and shouldn’t be any trouble even for the non computer savvy user.

Whilst only available on Windows, OkayFreedom performs very well with great speeds and servers in Germany, Switzerland, Great Britain, France and the USA, so it’s perfect if you want to catch up on iPlayer or 4OD etc.

Visit OkayFreedom »

5th place



TvWhenAway Logo

  • PROS
  • OpenVPN encryption
  • Simple service that serves its purpose
  • CONS
  • Not for those who need privacy
  • Only works for UK content
  • Guite expensive for what you get

TvWhenAway is designed for novice users who simply want to access UK streaming media services such as BBC iPlayer, 4OD etc.  An annual subscription costs £39 (around $60) and works on multiple devices. Signing up is easy and only an email and password are required.  Payment is through Paypal only.

Comes with preconfigured clients for Windows, Mac and Linux, as well as set-up guides for Android and iOS devices.

Visit TvWhenAway »

Legal issues

Most T.V. service providers are supported by adverts and are very unlikely to object to extra viewers. However, BBC iPlayer technically requires all users to hold a UK T.V. licence.  Many expats own property in the UK and probably have a licence already, so this shouldn’t be too much of a worry, but we do advise you to check with individual media providers just in case.


Whilst not intended to be an exhaustive review of all aspects of VPN services, those listed here are great for people living abroad who want to catch up on news, sport and other programmes from their home country.  Some of the providers listed here offer a SmartDNS service rather than VPN. This can be useful if your connection speed isn’t high, but data isn’t encrypted so they are far less secure. Take a look at our SmartDNS vs VPN article to learn more. Your choice will come down to your individual requirements but all the providers here offer a good solution for expats wishing to access content as if they were back home.

Best VPNs for Expats Summary

*All prices shown in US dollars

Advertiser disclosure

Joseph Robinson I'm a libertarian interested in human rights, technology, paradoxes and analogue synths.

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