vpn australia

Best VPN for Australia for 2021

Last updated on May 11, 2021

Australia isn’t all kangaroos and cricket, and its rabbit-proof fence isn’t the only legislation impinging on its residents’ freedom. Although we tend to think of Australia as a young and progressive country, looking at it’s attitude to online censorship, you’d easily mistake it for an old, fuddy-duddy, stick in the mud.

A few years ago, the Australian Securities and Investments Commission accidentally blocked 250,000 sites. The ASIC wanted to ban one site but inadvertently took out nearly a quarter of million instead. With mistakes like these in its past and a future that experts predict will be beset with censorship and restricted access, getting one of the best VPNs for Australia is the only way to ensure online freedom Down Under. Better still a VPN can help you get around Australia’s hefty online shopping taxes.

To protect your internet privacy in Australia, get ExpressVPN now by clicking here.

The Best VPNs for Australia

#1 ExpressVPN – The Very Best VPN for Australia

Quick to install and easy to navigate, ExpressVPN can mask your real location and IP address and replace it with one in any country it has a server in. That means you can be sampling craft beers in Brisbane while watching the SuperBowl, something you couldn’t do without a VPN because of the geographical restrictions placed on popular sporting events.

ExpressVPN has consistently navigated its way around government censorship and geoblocks, including the ever-changing and particularly challenging ones put in place by Netflix. In terms of performance, ExpressVPN is unbeatable, giving users hypersonic speeds and military-grade protection. Its reputation as a no-logging VPN provider is also squeaky clean and it is leading the industry when it comes to transparency and dependability.

With internet speeds in Australia being little more than average, the best VPNs for Australia should minimize lag and capitalize on speed which ExpressVPN does easily. This advanced cybersecurity solution gives you the advantage of split-tunneling which means you can select which traffic is encrypted and which isn’t. As a result, speeds tend to be faster and you can connect to local and American sites simultaneously without having to disconnect or reconnect your VPN.

Given its capability and powerful performance, ExpressVPN is surprisingly affordable, especially if you take advantage of their free trial. ExpressVPN gives you best-in-class protection and the ability to bypass restrictions like those resulting from Australia’s Online Infringement Act, which we’ll talk about in more detail later on. Combine those features with high-speed connections all over the world, and you’ll understand why ExpressVPN is number one in our book and tops our list of the best VPNs for Australia.

Take our word for it and sign up for ExpressVPN today, or find out what makes ExpressVPN so good by reading our full review.

#2 SurfSharkVPN – Best VPN For Streaming in Australia

If you’re looking for a shark hotspot in Australia, you could head for Queensland or you could sign up for one of the most exciting new VPNs on the market. SurfShark burst out of the water last year, making an unexpected impact on the VPN community, with its inexplicably high speeds and unprecedented offer of unlimited simultaneous connections.

SurfShark VPN doesn’t have the huge server network like ExpressVPN or NordVPN but manages to provide reliable connections and competitive speeds regardless. Its limited resources don’t seem to have any impact on performance and SurfShark VPN is delivering a top-quality service at a fraction of the price of its rivals.

Admittedly, SurfShark VPN can’t compete with the likes of ExpressVPN in terms of longevity and experience but, at present, with just 22,000 downloads, its 500 servers are working quickly and effectively. It supports both streaming and torrenting, can efficiently circumnavigate Netflix’s defenses, and has proven operational in the face of severe government restrictions, repeatedly evading China’s complex firewalls.

Although things may change as its user numbers increase, to date, SurfShark VPN is one of the best VPNs for Australia, offering top-grade encryption, reliable security protocols, high speeds, and some nice features. The interface is minimal to the point of being almost bland, but that also means it’s streamlined and straightforward. SurfShark VPN has enough power and customization available to suit the most advanced users while remaining accessible for the less experienced.

While ExpressVPN is tried and trusted, subscribing to SurfShark VPN involves a little more risk, but with its seriously low prices and top-class performance, it’s a risk we think is well worth taking. Sign up for SurfShark VPN today or, if you’re not ready for shark-infested waters just yet, find out more about the service in our full review.

#3 CyberGhost VPN – Most User-Friendly VPN in Australia

One look at CyberGhost VPN’s logo tells you this service is out to make friends, not alienate people and its user-friendly interface does precisely that. CyberGhost VPN has been around for a while but has worn a variety of different guises over the years before adopting its latest manifestation.

It’s not all been plain-sailing for CyberGhost VPN but its latest version has tackled many of the issues it was experiencing before to deliver a smooth online experience free of logging and devoid of unwanted adverts and malware. At the same time, CyberGhost has updated its privacy policy, overhauled its approach to zero logging, and developed a No-spy Data Center in privacy-friendly Romania. Clearly, there are no limits to what CyberGhost is prepared to do to ensure its users feel safe in its ghostly hands.

CyberGhost VPN has over 5,900 servers worldwide, with 64 in Australia alone. Admittedly, it also has a lot of traffic to deal with but its speeds indicate that its more than capable for sustaining this volume. As its name suggests, CyberGhost VPN allows you to pass through firewalls and browse invisibly, keeping your online activities away from peeping Toms and government agencies.

CyberGhost VPN offers specialized streaming servers that will connect you to Netflix or ESPN at the touch of a button, while its security protocols will give you premium protection even when using notoriously vulnerable public Wi-Fi connections.

Despite being so easy to operate, CyberGhost uses cutting-edge technology to keep you safe and connected. Additional features include a kill switch, ad-blocking, IP and DNS leak protection, and simultaneous connections for up to seven devices. Adaptable and affordable, CyberGhost is among the best VPNs for Australia so why not test it out and take advantage of its 45-day money-back guarantee? Get CyberGhost VPN today or discover more about its intricacies in our full review.

#4 NordVPN – Best VPN in Australia for Online Shopping

If you’re impressed by CyberGhost’s extensive server network, be prepared to be amazed by NordVPN’s gargantuan system which consists of over 5,000 servers worldwide. NordVPN is an old-school VPN that has stood the test of time and stuck to its guns, keeping user privacy and security as its focus. It may not have the speed or agility of SurfShark VPN, for instance, but its encryption level is second to none.

There are a couple of features that make NordVPN stand out from the crowd and its Onion over VPN concept is one of them. Although not something you’d use every day, Onion over VPN enables you to connect to the notorious Tor network without anyone knowing you’re there. Tor gives you greater anonymity on the web and, by using Onion over VPN, even your entry and exit points will be disguised, meaning even the most zealous government official wouldn’t be able to keep tabs on you.

In addition to giving you complete privacy, NordVPN’s extensive server network means you have a wealth of fake locations to choose from. This is great for those wanting to do some online shopping without being penalized for their Australian IP address.

Australians notoriously experience higher prices and limited product ranges online so being able to navigate to US-based sites is a definite bonus. Last year, Amazon blocked Australians from using its international site so, if you don’t get the protection of one of the best VPNs for Australia, you could find yourself paying inflated prices or failing to find what you were looking for.

NordVPN is one of the best VPNs for online shopping and traveling to Australia because it’s DoubleVPN feature gives you twice the protection by bouncing your traffic through two encrypted servers instead of one. This gives you the security you need to circumvent blocks on online shopping sites without the fear of getting caught.

Get double the security and sign up for NordVPN today, or check out the pros and cons in our full NordVPN review.

#5 ProtonVPN

ProtonVPN offers users various priced plans beginning with a completely free subscription that doesn’t require any information to download the software. The higher-priced plans offer a great number of features including ten simultaneous connections, high speeds, Plus Servers, Secure Core, Tor Servers, Secure Streaming, and ProtonMail.

This VPN has around 620 servers in 44 countries, with the number of servers steadily increasing in a small amount of time. It is also handy to know that there are 20 servers located in Australia.

Secure Core needs a mention as one of the best features offered by ProtonVPN. This will protect you from time correlation attacks and will monitor your connection when you enter or leave any server by routing your connection through two different locations.

Covering all major platforms, ProtonVPN has custom apps for Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS devices, with the Windows client having an attractive cool map which will show you which server you have connected to, drawing a line from your current location to that server in a James Bond-like interface.

You can connect to the fastest server according to your preferences or automatically connect to a random location and there are great features that are connected by default like the kill switch and DNS leak protection. This is fantastic for VPN beginners who don’t want to or are unable to tinker in the advanced settings.

ProtonVPN doesn’t offer live chat services like some of the prime VPN services, but when it comes to customer service, you can always submit a ticket and expect an answer within 24 hours.

The best part of this VPN service is the free VPN which will allow one device to be protected and you can choose from three various locations including the Netherlands, US, and Japan. Whilst other VPNs that offer a free service often put a limit on bandwidth, you won’t see this happen with ProtonVPN.

There is a 30-day money-back guarantee, so if you’re in Australia or planning to go there on holiday, why not try ProtonVPN today? Find out more information about ProtonVPN by checking out our full review.

All Access Australia?

Australia’s a modern, open-minded country so of course, you can access social media and porn sites if you want to, but it’s not quite as free and tolerant as you might expect. A variety of legal obstacles prevent Australians from using the internet as they wish and accessing information.

Australia’s defamation laws are designed to balance freedom of expression with protecting a person’s reputation. If that sounds vague, it’s because it is. Unfortunately, that means that you could be sued for writing a scathing review about a product you overpaid for on Amazon. It also means authorities have the power to remove content deemed as defamatory and therefore impact negatively on Australians’ freedom of speech.

Copyright laws in Australia have been under the spotlight recently as well. In November last year, the Australian government passed  The Copyright Amendment (Online Infringement) Act 2018 (Act), giving authorities the power to order ISPs to block sites whose primary effect or purpose is “to infringe, or to facilitate the infringement of, copyright (whether or not in Australia)”. This means Australians could see the likes of YouTube blocked on the basis of it being a “copyright infringement facilitator”.

As if that wasn’t worrying enough, Australian regulations could see the results of online searches manipulated to hide those occurring on blocked sites. Having realized that blocking at an ISP level is ineffective, authorities now feel both the location and even the existence of infringing content should be hidden. The result would be that Australians wouldn’t have free access to online content, but wouldn’t know that they didn’t have it because it would never be seen. Proponents of online freedom, like ExpressVPN, won’t let something like this slide, which is why having a powerful VPN on your side is the best way forward.

A major concern is, however, that Australian regulations could extend to include VPNs as well. Many Australians rely on VPNs to access content and online shopping channels based in foreign countries, but, should Australia want to take its internet censorship to the next level, residents and visitors to the country could find themselves restricted to using VPN providers that allow the government to track and monitor their users; online behavior. That’s not free nor fair and it certainly has us worried which is why we recommend getting on board with one of the best VPNs for Australia before censorship takes another chunk out of your online freedoms.

Streaming Out of Australia

The Australian entertainment industry may not be very sure of itself and blames “global players” for increasing viewer expectations and making it difficult for native entertainment providers to compete. As a  result, further regulations could force more homegrown content onto Australian streaming sites than their audiences may actually want. Having said that Australian streaming site, Stan, topped over one million viewers last year, making the second biggest after Netflix. It’s little wonder then that Australians all over the world are using one of the best VPNs for Australia to access their favorite Stan content.

How to Access Stan From Overseas

With around a million Australians living and working overseas, it’s no surprise that VPN providers like ExpressVPN are touting their product’s capacity to negotiate geoblocks and let the Aussies watch some original native content. Shows like the comedy series, No Activity, have proven so successful they’ve inspired US versions, but, if you want to watch the original, you’ll need to follow these simple steps:

  1. Subscribe to ExpressVPN or one of the other option in our selection of the best VPNs for Australia
  2. Connect to the fastest Australian server available
  3. Get a Stan subscription for as little as $7 (USD) per month
  4. Enjoy unlimited Australian and international content

Top Streaming Sites in Australia

While Stan is definitely one of the most popular streaming sites in Australia after Netflix, there are a couple of others that have caught our eye, including:

  • Hayu – great for reality TV addicts
  • 10 All Access – a combination of native reality TV and gripping drama
  • Foxtel – the best for live online sports events

Bear in mind that the Australian dollar is weaker than the US which often means that their online streaming subscription services are a little more affordable – another reason for you to invest in one of the best VPNs for Australia.

VPN Australia Bottom Line

Despite appearances, Australia has some pretty draconian laws pertaining to internet access and shows no sign of letting up. New laws regulating copyright and defamation threaten to see more sites blocked and even search engine results tampered with to remove such sites.

Australia is currently a free country when it comes to internet access but, despite that status, has already blocked over 100 different sites, including opensubtitles.com which provides free subtitles for movies and TV series, and KissAnime’s free English-dubbed anime site. According to authorities, sites of this nature impinge on copyright restrictions. According to us at Secure Thoughts, these regulations impinge on your right to free access of digital content which is why we recommend using one of the best VPNs for Australia to bypass such restrictions and get your free subtitles if you want them!

Australia is neither as free nor as fair as many visitors may anticipate, so subscribing to a reliable VPN service, like that provided by ExpressVPN, is the only way to ensure you can access the content you want when you want. In addition to government restrictions, one of the best VPNs for Australia will also give you access to geographically restricted content from other countries, including US Netflix and live sporting events like March Madness which is currently raging across America.

Subscribe to one of the best VPNs for Australia before you head off and make sure you don’t get left out in the dark Down Under.

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