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5 Best VPNs for Australia in 2017

Ray Walsh

Ray Walsh

June 9, 2017

All over the world, governments are passing invasive surveillance laws and Australia is no different. In addition, Australia is a place where many websites are censored – particularly websites that provide pirated content like the Pirate Bay. For citizens that don’t want to be snooped on – and want to be able to access whatever content they wish – a VPN for Australia is the perfect solution.

The Best VPNs for Australia in 2017

  1. ExpressVPN Special Deal: Save 49% Today!
  2. NordVPN
  3. CyberGhost
  4. IPVanish
  5. Buffered

Unfortunately for Australian citizens, the government has passed laws that make Australia on of the most snooped on locations in the world. Mandatory data retention forces ISPs to keep everyone’s web browsing histories and metadata for two whole years. Furthermore, it is possible for the police and many other agencies to access those files without a specific warrant.

In addition, Australia is a place that has been found to be suffering greatly from corruption at the hands of the police. For this reason, it is absolutely essential that Australians protect themselves with a Virtual Private Network (VPN). A VPN is by far the best form of personal cybersecurity available, which completely stops ISPs from collecting data for the government.

Furthermore, a VPN allows people to pretend to be in another country. By doing so, they are able to overcome all forms of encryption. In this article, we will explain exactly why Australians should invest in a VPN service. We will explain the difference between the best VPNs, and will reveal how a VPN works, why not just any VPN will do, and what Australian citizens can do with a VPN.

Best VPN for Australia: Summary

Rank Company Score Price Link
1
ExpressVPN review
$6.67 / monthVisit Site
Special Deal: Save 49% Today!
2
NordVPN review
$3.29 / monthVisit Site
3
CyberGhost review
$2.90 / monthVisit Site
4
IPVanish review
$5.19 / monthVisit Site
5
Buffered review
$6.60 / monthVisit Site
BestVPN Editor's Choice Award
PROS:
  • Special Deal: Save 49% Today!
  • Servers in 94 countries
  • 24/7 live chat support
  • Lightning fast connection speeds
  • P2P: yes
  • No usage logs
CONS:
  • Costs slightly more (because it is better)
  • Some connection logs for internal use (only aggregated lo and so can never be pinned to a single user)

Our ExpressVPN review found it is by far the best VPN for Australia. Servers are located in 94 countries and they all perform at the very fastest speeds available on the VPN market. For this reason this VPN is perfect for streaming in HD and gaming. As far as security is concerned, ExpressVPN is both trusted and reliable. Encryption is provided via strongly implemented OpenVPN encryption and the privacy policy is fantastic. Also excellent: ExpressVPN comes with all the best VPN features including stealth mode, a killswitch, auto connect, DNS leak protection, shared and static IPs. Furthermore dedicated IP addresses are available. For those that want to run it directly on a router (to protect all of the devices in their home automatically) ExpressVPN sells a pre-flashed router. The VPN software is easy to use, is available for all platforms, and can be installed on three simultaneous devices. Customer care is provided by superb 24/7 live chat. Finally, it provides a 30-day money back guarantee to test the service risk-free.

Special Deal: Save 49% Today!

Visit ExpressVPN »30 day moneyback guarantee
2nd Place

NordVPN

PROS:
  • Available on all platforms
  • P2P: yes
  • Excellent security (double encryption)
  • No logs
  • Tor over VPN
CONS:
  • Double encryption can affect speeds

NordVPN is a Panama-based VPN that is packed with excellent security features. It is a zero logs VPN that has strong OpenVPN encryption. It is fully featured with double encryption, shared IPs, VPN into Tor, DNS leak protection, stealth mode (obfsproxy), and a kill switc., then this is a great VPN. Do bear in mind, though, that double encryption can slow you down a bit (and this VPN is not quite as fast as the ones above).

NordVPN has servers in over 50 countries – including Australia. Finally it offers a 30-day money back guarantee. If extra securityfeatures are a concern to you, this VPN might be worth considering. However, despite being well known for security – did you know that it doesn’t implement OpenVPN as strongly as ExpressVPN!?

3rd Place

CyberGhost

PROS:
  • Software for all platforms
  • Up to five simultaneous connections
  • Fast connection speeds
  • Strong OpenVPN encryption
  • P2P permitted
CONS:
  • Live chat isn’t 24/7
  • Some connection logs kept

CyberGhost VPN is an excellent option for Australia. Servers are located in 27 countries around the world, encryption is military grade OpenVPN, and setting up the service is really easy. CyberGhost’s user-friendly apps are available for all popular platforms.

No usage logs are kept and this VPN has an excellent privacy policy in general. What’s more the VPN is based in Romania, well out of reach of invasive governments like the UK and US. The VPN is fully featured with DNS leak protection and killswitch.

Finally, the VPN provides blistering fast speeds for streaming in HD, and provides a 30-day money back guarantee to test the service.

4th Place

IPVanish

PROS:
  • Great value for money
  • P2P: yes
  • Fully featured
  • No logs kept at all
  • Superb connection speeds
CONS:
  • Based in the US

After reviewing IPVanish we found it to be an excellent choice for Australians that want a fast VPN. It is a zero logs VPN (which makes up for it being based in the US). It provides OpenVPN encryption (strong – but not quite as strong as expressVPN). It is a well subscribed VPN with servers in over 60 countries. In addition, it provides fantastic speeds for unblocking and streaming in HD. The custom software is avalable for all popular platforms. The VPN is fully featured with a killswitch and DNS leak protection. It can also be used on five simultaneous devices. The software is easy to use and like ExpressVPN it will keep you secure from both the government and while on public WiFi. IPVanish can be payed for with Bitcoin, and the VPN has a 7-day money back guarantee.

5th Place

Buffered

PROS:
  • Servers in 37 countries
  • P2P: yes
  • Unique features
  • Outstanding Widows VPN
  • Very fast connection speeds
CONS:
  • Quite pricey
  • Some connection logs for internal use (no usage logs)

Buffered is a VPN for Australia that is particularly recommended for Windows users. The VPN is easy to use and comes with all the features that you are likely to need – a killswitch, DNS leak protection and OpenVPN encryption. It also has a unique port discovery mode that will allow you to connect to public WiFi hotspots without the need for the password from reception (at hotels for instance). This reliaible VPN has an excellent privacy policy, and promises to keep no usage logs whatsoever. The VPN also provides a 30-day moneyback guarantee to test the service. Servers are located in only 37 countries (which although less than the VPNs above – are actually all located in really useful locations). Furthermore the VPN is fast and will permit streaming in HD. Buffered even automatically refunds customers that haven’t used the VPN in the first 7 days – a testament to the firm’s honest approach to business.

What is a VPN for Australia?

Sadly the Australian government snoops heavily on its citizens using mandatory data retention. A VPN is an online subscription service that provides strong encryption for its users. By encrypting all incoming and outgoing traffic, the data is scrambled so that no one can access it. The result is that, despite the law, the Australian VPN subscriber’s data cannot be collected for the government. Their file simply remains empty.

In addition, by connecting to a VPN server – Australian VPN subscribers can conceal their real IP address. As soon as anybody connects to a VPN, their IP address appears to be that of the VPN. All of the VPN services in this guide have servers located all over the world, so that Australians can pretend to be anywhere they want. With a VPN, Australians will never have to worry about Geo-restriction notices or ISP censorship again.

What’s more, all of the VPNs that we have recommended in this guide also have servers in Australia. This will allow Australian VPN users to also protect their data (and keep it private and secure) when using services and online subscriptions that are geo-restricted to Australia.

Is it Safe to Use a VPN in Australia?

Yes. When you use a VPN, the encryption that it provides means that nobody can tell what the VPN subscriber is doing. This gives the VPN subscriber the freedom to do as they please without having to worry about snoopers.

However, it is worth remembering that not every VPN was created equally. Some VPNs have poor privacy policies and even sell data to third parties. Others provide outdated encryption or poorly implemented encryption that isn’t strong enough to keep their subscriber’s data secure.

All of the VPNs for Australia in this guide have been chosen because they have both strong privacy policies and robust encryption. These VPNs not only have the best features – and the best speeds – but will always keep your data secure.

Can I Get an Australia VPN for free?

There are free VPNs on the market, however, the vast majority of those sell user data on to third parties which insanely insecure. A VPNs job is to protect your privacy online and keep your private and secure – not to sell your data onto third parties in order to make revenue. For this reason, you are strongly advised to stay away from VPNs that are free.

With that said, there are a few premium VPNs that do offer a free VPN service that we can recommend. Those free VPNs for Australia will work, but they have restrictions such as a monthly usage limit and a bandwidth limit in order to entice users into getting a full service. At the end of the day you get what you pay for, and although a free VPN for Australia is ok for getting a quick taste of a VPN – it isn’t a long term solution and it wont allow you to get the type of enjoyment that a paid VPN for Australia will give you.

What can I do with a VPN in Australia?

With a VPN the Internet becomes international. Firstly, websites that have been banned by the government and are blacklisted by Internet Service Providers can easily be accessed. To do so all that Aussies need to do is connect to a server outside of their country.

This technique also allows people to overcome geo-restrictions. Want to pretend to be a regular British pom to watch Wimbledon on the BBC? Simply connect to a VPN server in the UK. Want to get a US cable TV subscription? Then connect to a US server. Italian football on Italian TV? These are all option when you have a VPN.

Australian VPN for Sport

A VPN is a superb idea for any Aussie that wants to watch more live sport. A VPN for Australia lets anyone unblock geo-restricted sports competitions from overseas. No matter whether you prefer ice hockey, american football, boxing, cricket, football, rugby, golf, tennis, or motorsports, a VPN can massively increase what you have access to.

ExpressVPN has servers in 94 countries, and that means that their users can pretend to be in any of those locations. That gives their subscribers almost unlimited access to sports. In addition, a VPN will allow people to join geo-restricted online services such as BeIN Sports or SlingTV (which shows insane amounts of sports).

A VPN for Australia – TV Addicts

For Australians that love TV shows and movies, a VPN will be like a dream come true. VPN subscribers can  watch geo-restricted TV streams like the UK’s BBC iPlayer, streams from New Zealand and Canada and even US cable TV channels. Furthermore, a VPN will allow subscribers to connect to the US Netflix catalog which will more than double the amount of movies and shows they get to see.

Australia VPN – Considerations

In 2015, the Australian government passed the Telecommunications (Interception and Access) Amendment (Data Retention) Bill. The legislation makes Australian ISPs retain all citizen’s web browsing history and metadata for two years. The bill also allows government agencies to access that private and personal data without the need for a specific warrant. With an encrypted internet connection, VPN users regain their privacy, allowing them to peacefully use the internet without fear of intrusion.

It is for this reason that a VPN for Australia must have a strong privacy policy and well implemented OpenVPN encryption. All of the VPNs that we have recommended in this article have a proven track record of providing privacy for their users. With security taken care of, there are still some other important considerations that must be understood before choosing a VPN. Let’s take a look:

Server locations

In order to enjoy your VPN’s ability to unblock content, it is important that your VPN for Australia has servers located all over the world. Some people need just a few locations, other want to be able to keep their options open so that they can watch content – like sports competitions – from all over the world.

The VPNs that we have selected for use in Australia have fantastic networks with many servers located all over the globe. Some have more than others, but all of the VPNs are extremely well equipped to allow their subscribers to access vast amounts of content. In addition every VPN on this list will allow Australians to bypass all the government censorship.

Connection speeds

With servers located all over the world, the next important consideration is connection speeds. Many VPNs claim to be fast, but as soon as you try them they take away three quarters of your connection speed – if not more.

In order to pretend to be in another country your internet traffic has to travel to a VPN server in that country – and then onto the website (and back the same way). That does slow down the Internet a bit. However, the best VPNs only slow down the Internet a small amount because they have high quality lightning fast servers.

Most VPNs slow down user’s connections so much that it is impossible to do data intensive tasks. That is not true with any of the VPNs in this guide, which have all been selected for Australian users because they provide the fastest speeds.

These VPNs will allow you to stream in HD no matter which country you want to connect to.

WiFi protection with an Australian VPN

When people connect to public WiFi they put themselves at high risk from hackers. While connected to public WiFi, anybody else that is also on the WiFi can see their traffic. That means they can discover their credentials, passwords, and even bank details.

A VPN is the perfect solution because the encryption that the VPN provides stops anybody from being able to see the traffic. That means that VPN users can do as they please – shop online with their credit card – go on their facebook – or login to their Paypal. With a VPN for Australia no one can ever access your data on public WiFi (or anywhere else – like shared houses, schools, or workplaces).

Conclusion

The VPNs in this guide have been selected because they are perfect for use in Australia. All of these VPNs are trusted and reliable providers that have excellent reputations for providing privacy for their users. In addition, all have excellent software that will work on multiple platforms. That means you will be able to use your VPN on your laptop, PC, tablet or smartphone.

Here at BestVPN.com we understand that with over 850 VPN providers on the market, selectin one can be a total nightmare. Many are a total rip off, and without knowing what makes the difference it can seem like a massive task.

This article is designed to stop you getting ripped off. No matter which VPN you select you will be incredibly happy, because all of these VPNs provide a fantastic fast VPN experience that is well worth the cheap subscription fee.

Finally, remember that getting a yearly subscription will save you a lot of money. So if you intend to use your VPN all year round this is highly recommended.

Best VPN for Australia: Summary

Rank Company Score Price Link
1
ExpressVPN review
$6.67 / month Visit Site
Special Deal: Save 49% Today!
2
NordVPN review
$3.29 / month Visit Site
3
CyberGhost review
$2.90 / month Visit Site
4
IPVanish review
$5.19 / month Visit Site
5
Buffered review
$6.60 / month Visit Site

Title image credit: LVVs/Shutterstock.com

Ray Walsh

I am a freelance journalist and blogger from England. I am highly interested in politics and in particular the subject of IR. I am an advocate for freedom of speech, equality, and personal privacy. On a more personal level I like to stay active, love snowboarding, swimming and cycling, enjoy seafood, and love to listen to trap music.

23 responses to “5 Best VPNs for Australia in 2017

  1. Douglas
    I get the basic idea/appeal of a VPN, but two issues loom as deal-killers…

    ~> If the speed is too slow, the service is generally unusable. No one wants the safest bulletproof snoop-proof private car that goes 5km/hr. Unless there is NO other option. Remember Internet ’95?

    ~> How many devices can you connect at once? We’re not all childless widowers, geek recluses or sole traders. If it’s pay-per-device that should be indicated in the pricing. ‘Course, that will knock the speed down further.

    I’d out these two aspects at the top of the list, as they determine whether there is any pint to proceeding at all.

    1. Hi Frank,

      I think you overstate the slowdown caused by using a VPN. If connecting to a good VPN service using a nearby server, you can typically expect around a 10-15% speed hit. Distance to the VPN server does make a big difference, though, which I know can be an issue if you are based in Australia. Assuming that you want to avoid Aussie VPN servers (governmnet spying), then connecting to servers in Hong Kong will probably net you the best speeds.

      Most VPN services these days permit between 3-5 simultaneous connections (devices). We always state this number in our reviews.

  2. Need help, if I set a VPN in Australia but will want to use overseas, mainly Egypt, will I need to connect back to Aussie server for connection if I want to watch Aussie TV, Foxtel etc?
    Thanks
    Keith

    1. Hi Keith,

      Yes. To watch Aussie TV you will need to connect to a server in Australia. Note that Australia is along way from Egypt, so to prevent buffering issues, if possible, I recommend downloading rather streaming, in order to avoid buffering issues.

  3. Just one quick question, why did Private Internet Access (PIA) not make it onto this list.

    After speaking to several friends of mine who live overseas USA and Europe. They swear by PIA as the best option other than NORD.

    Is there any reason in particular we should not use PIA in Australia?

    1. Hi Loki,

      None whatsoever. PIA is a good VPN service (although Mac/iPhone users seem less happy with it than Windows and Android users). Choosing these 5 Best lists is a group decision by the BestVPN.com team, and the current list was chosen for reasons explained in the article. This should not be seen as any reflection on PIA (which I used as my personal VPN service for years. FWIW, I only stopped using it because it is based in the US).

  4. I’m a total noob at this, but if I live in Australia where there is a data retention policy and actively pay money to a VPN service to get around the invasion of privacy and purposeful overcharging for out-of-date products, doesn’t that make me some sort of criminal?
    Not really democratic, is it?

    1. Hi Concerned,

      a) It is not against the law to use a VPN in Australia.
      b) “If a law is unjust, a man is not only right to disobey it, he is obligated to do so.” Whether or not this quote is correctly attributed to Thomas Jefferson, I firmly believe it to be true.

  5. My main issue is that the Australian IP-s (including static IP-s) provided by the VPN providers have all been rubbish. I use 9 geo-location tests and thus I am comparing apples to apples. ALL the IP-s failed at least two tests. The download speeds have been in most cases atrocious, between 2-4 Mb/s, which is almost useless. I need at least 10Mb/s in order to run web applications which require an Australian IP
    (NOT downloading media files) from Europe. So far the VPN providers (both large and small) have all turned out to be a waste of time and waste of money.

    1. Hi Peter,

      The problem with Australia is that is very far away from anywhere else. Even without the additional slowdown that using a VPN gives, I understand that internet connections in Australia are generally nowhere near as fast as Europeans like me are used to. Until fiber-optic backbone connectivity to Australia is greatly improved (or Einsteins theories are proved wrong) this will probably continue to be an issue.

  6. I subscribed to NordVPN 3 days ago. The 1st day it worked, the 2nd day it didn’t and the 3rd when eventually it worked it used 3 gbytes of data ,the last 60 mb in 4 mins- I was able to check with my isp. SO I deleted and so far I am $70 out of pocket. They replied to an email with a no. and we’ll get back as soon as possible!
    Not a happy chappie and where do I go from here?

    1. Hi Murray
      We’re sorry you had a bad experience with them. If they don’t sort things out for you let us know and we’ll try and help you.
      Peter

  7. How can you recommend NordVPN, i took up their service on your review and complained bitterly about how bad it was and low and behold it was great for 10days, then it slowly declined over a two week period to a point were i can’t use it. Below is the response i get from their support team — I paid good money for a service i can’t use and this is how i get treated.

    We are eager to help you asap, but there is a bit of a delay in reaching us now. We have been growing like crazy because people love NordVPN so much :). That’s why we are a bit short on staff at the moment plus it’s holiday season around here.

    1. Hi Brad,

      I can understand your frustration at this reply! IMO NordVPN is in many ways a great service, but is let down by the fact that many of its servers are very slow. I have found in the past, however, that with a little trial and error it is possible to find fast servers.

  8. Hi. So what’s the best up address hider to get. I do not want to be tracked at all. And is there a way someone can get past the fake IP address and see your real one. Cheers

    1. Hi Phil,

      – A VPN will hide your IP address. If you are based in Aus, then this is a good list, or you might like to check out our more generic 5 Best VPN Services list. If it is privacy you want, then check out 5 Best Logless VPNs.
      – If you would like to learn more about what VPNs can and can’t do, you might be interested in my fairly comprehensive VPNs for Beginners guide.
      – For a discussion on how your IP address can “leak” even when using a VPN (and instructions on how to fix the problem), please see my Complete Guide to IP Leaks.

  9. Thanks Douglas
    Have tried HK (2 servers), Singapore, (2 servers) and Japan – all have come back as being blacklisted by Spamhaus XBL blacklist when I try to send an email. Only one that doesn’t – so far – is Taiwan. Singapore would have been my preferred option as it is the closest, Hong Kong next. I’ll just keep trying! Thanks

  10. Thanks Douglas
    I am finding that some servers in nearby countries are on a spamhaus blacklist so I cannot send emails! So then I need to change servers so I can send emails. This is going to be get annoying very fast.
    I don’t know if you have followed the current disaster that was the online Australian Census – the documentation mailed out implied that this had to be done on one particular night – I did mine as soon as I got the letter as I could envision what would happen if everybody tried to do it on the same night – and it did!
    Thanks for the info.

    1. Hi Jasnick,

      The online Aussie census does appear to a complete balls-up! If I was in Australia I would probably use VPN servers in Hong Kong. HK is a fair geographical distance from you, but I would balance this against the fact that it has good internet infrastructure (some thing that cannot be said for much of SE Asia), and has an uncensored internet.

  11. Very useful article. I signed up with one of your selections. Some questions:

    I understand that data retention is policy in several countries: UK,US,Aust, NZ and Canada. If so, does using a VPN server in any of those countries mean that one is not protected?

    Should one try for a server closer to home for best speeds or for a server in a country that has an excellent internet rating?

    Thanks

    1. Hi Jasnick,

      1. This depends on the country. In the UK all VPN providers are required to keep logs by law (and GHCQ taps everything unofficially anyway!). The US has no mandatory data retention laws, so there is no legal requirement to keep logs (unless an NSL is issued – which usually comes with a gag order. The NSA probably spies on major VPN providers anyway – why wouldn’t it?). In Australia, NZ and Canada “communications providers” (ISPs and phone companies) are required to keep logs, but the it is currently very unclear how the laws apply to VPN providers (so it is safest to assume the worse). All the counties you mention are members of the Five Eyes spying alliance, and so are best avoided if you care about privacy.

      2. In general, the closer a VPN server is to you, the faster your connection speeds will be.

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