How to Watch Netflix in China

Few video-streaming sites can battle with Netflix in popularity and number of viewers. There are many versions of Netflix. This makes catching up with blockbusters, and recent releases (if you don’t want to go to the cinema) much easier. But there’s a slight problem. Netflix has geo-restriction policies, so it’s a lot harder to stream its content in China.

Nevertheless, don’t get discouraged just yet. If you have the right tools, you can bypass the video-streaming site’s geo-restrictions. VPNs are the tools you need, and we’ll be examining some of the best ones to use in watching Netflix’s content in China.

The Best VPNs for Watching Netflix in China

Here are the five best VPNs you can use to access Netflix from China:

1. ExpressVPN

Features

  • Number of servers: More than 3,000
  • Speeds: Unlimited
  • Server locations: 160 in 94 countries
  • Maximum devices supported: 5
  • 24 live chat: Yes
  • 30 day money back guarantee: Yes

Pros/Cons

  • Fastest VPN out there
  • Strict no logs policy
  • 256-bit AES encryption
  • Few discounts

ExpressVPN is perhaps the most popular VPN in the world at the moment. It has servers in 160 locations and 94 countries, which makes it suitable for watching Netflix in China. ExpressVPN’s headquarters is away from the 14 eyes countries, in the British Virgin Islands (BVI), where data protection laws are not binding.

Looking at this VPN’s features, you’ll find everything you need to watch videos in China freely. The award-winning VPN is available on Mac, iOS, Linux, Android, game consoles, and Smart TVs. It also has top-notch security features like the AES-256 encryption, a network kill switch, and TrustedServer technology. ExpressVPN masks IP addresses brilliantly, allowing you to anonymously browse through Netflix’s videos.

With a single ExpressVPN account, you can connect as many as five devices at a time. You’ll also get unlimited bandwidth to stream and browse as many videos as you want.

ExpressVPN offers a 30-day money-back guarantee for all its subscriptions, and there’s a 24/7 live support chat platform to help you with any issue you may face while using the VPN.

  • Pros: Fastest VPN out there; Strict no logs policy; 256-bit AES encryption
  • Lowest price: $8.12

2. NordVPN

Features

  • Cryptocurrency accepted? Yes
  • Simultaneous connections: 6
  • Dedicated IP-addresses? Yes
  • Servers: 5342 in 58 countries

Pros/Cons

  • Lots of pricing options
  • Netflix support kept up to date
  • 256-bit AES encryption
  • Slow app

NordVPN is another VPN you can use to watch Netflix in China. Established in 2012, NordVPN has more than 12 million users all over the world. Here are a couple of exciting features about the VPN

As you’ll expect, NordVPN uses military-grade AES-256 encryption to protect its users from security breaches. It also has a double VPN feature that takes security to the next level. NordVPN operates a 100% no-logging policy, and the VPN also has a DNS leak protection and an automatic kill switch to keep your information private.

This world-class VPN allows you to stream Netflix videos in China without interruptions. At the moment, the provider has 5553 servers in 58 countries, all of which are lightning-fast.

NordVPN is flexible and allows you to use a single account to connect multiple devices at a time. The Virtual Private Network has apps for the devices it is compatible with, but you can also use its browser proxy extension. Nevertheless, its best feature is that it offers dedicated IP addresses that no one will have access to, at only a little fee.

Like ExpressVPN, you can get all these features from NordVPN risk-free for 30-days. This means you will get a refund after a month of use if you are not happy with how the VPN works in China.

3. SurfShark

Features

  • Free trial? Yes
  • Simultaneous connections: unlimited
  • Ad blocking? Yes
  • Servers: 1000+ in 61 countries

Pros/Cons

  • No footprints
  • Allows torrenting
  • 256-bit AES encryption
  • Not the cheapest around

Another VPN we recommend for streaming Netflix’s contents in China is SurfShark. The Virtual Private Network is located in the British Virgin Islands, far away from all the 14 eyes countries. Like the other VPNs on this list, SurfShark has quite some features that make it suitable for watching Netflix in China.

Firstly, SurfShark has more than 1040 servers in over 61 countries of the world. This means that from China, you can mask your location and make it seem like you are several miles away. These servers from the provider are pretty fast, making it much easier to connect and stream videos on Netflix.

SurfShark has rock-solid security features that are difficult for hackers, the government, or even your ISP to intercept. The VPN operates a strict no-logging policy, and it has an automatic kill switch that’ll ensure your data doesn’t get exposed. On top of this, SurfShark has a Camouflage Mode to cover your tracks while you browse the Internet.

This outstanding VPN allows unlimited connections to a single account at a time, and the best-in-class AES-256-GCM encryption will secure all these devices.

  • Pros: No footprints; Allows torrenting; 256-bit AES encryption
  • Lowest price: $1.99

4. PureVPN

Features

  • 24/7 support? Yes
  • Simultaneous logins: 5
  • Dedicated IP-addresses? Yes
  • Servers: over 2000

Pros/Cons

  • Port forwarding
  • Servers located all over the world
  • 256-bit AES encryption
  • Not the cheapest

PureVPN is another VPN that has cemented its place as one of the best in the industry. As a leading VPN, it is one of the few that offer many features that make watching Netflix from China easier.

A couple of reasons we recommend this VPN is not only because its headquarters is in Hong Kong, but also that it has over 2000 servers in more than 180 locations spread across 140 countries of the world. It has more than 3 million satisfied users, which is a plus for the VPN.

PureVPN is compatible with Windows, Android, iPad, and Linux devices. The VPN has affordable subscription plans, and you’ll get a 31-day money-back guarantee if you get any of them. There’s also a support system to help you through technical issues that you may experience when using the VPN.

  • Pros: Port forwarding; Servers located all over the world; 256-bit AES encryption
  • Lowest price: $3.33

5. Ivacy

Features

  • Cryptocurrency accepted? Yes
  • Simultaneous connections: 5
  • Supported devices? All, including TVs
  • Servers: Over 1000 in 63 countries

Pros/Cons

  • Streaming support
  • Support for torrenting as well
  • Military grade 256-bit encryption
  • Speed issues

Ivacy is the last on this list of VPNs that makes watching Netflix in China stress-free. At the moment, it has over 1000 servers in more than 100 locations, which means you can stream videos on Netflix easily. Ivacy offers unlimited bandwidth, and the provider operates a strict no-logging policy.

With Ivacy, you’ll get a 30-day money-back guarantee, as well as some of the most reliable protocols in the industry. But what really makes Ivacy stand out and suitable for Chinese residents who want to watch Netflix is that its servers are extremely fast.

  • Pros: Streaming support; Support for torrenting as well; Military grade 256-bit encryption
  • Lowest price: $3.50

Why is Netflix’s content Geo-restricted?

Netflix partners with content providers through deals so that you can get the movies you want. These deals are to protect the producer and the content itself. From the license agreements, producers can get percentages of the earnings.

The licensing deals are specific to countries, and they won’t cover the streaming of content outside the countries of the agreement. China, along with some other countries like North Korea and the UAE, is among the few that are not included in the licensing agreement with Netflix.

How to watch Netflix videos in China

With the knowledge of some of the best VPNs, the question now is, how do you watch Netflix videos and movies in China? Follow these three simple steps:

1. Get a reputable VPN

We have helped you find some of the best VPNs you can use to watch Netflix in China. Now, all you have to do is download their apps from your device’s store, or get the browser proxy extension, if the VPN has one.

2. Adjust the settings and choose a server

After getting a VPN, the next step is to choose a server and adjust its setting. Because China is not part of the countries that are included in Netflix’s license agreement, choosing a server that’s in China is no good to you. Instead, you should go for a server in another country.

The best VPNs have features like Double VPN and split tunneling that you can turn on or off. Adjust all these settings before you start using the VPN.

3. Start watching Netflix, but be patient

You may get an error message when watching Netflix in China. Don’t get worked up when this pops up; it happens once in a while. All you’ll need to do is reload the page to continue streaming, but if that doesn’t work, then you can try changing servers.

How to choose the best VPN for watching Netflix in China?

We’ve included five of the best VPNs for watching Netflix in China. So, how do you choose your top-picks from the lot? Here are a couple of things to watch out for:

1. Cost: VPNs don’t cost a fortune, but their prices vary from provider to provider. Even though they’ll not cost you a dime, we do not recommend free VPNs majorly because they do not deliver exactly what they promise. Instead of going for free VPNs, weigh the subscription prices of all the options we’ve included above and then make your choice.

2. Reliability: The reliability of a VPN is its ability to perform its functions for a long time without failing. Make sure you get a reliable VPN with lots of servers. The providers we reviewed above guarantee a high level of reliability

3. Security: Apart from allowing you to watch Netflix videos you wouldn’t have had access to, VPNs protect you from spying eyes. When getting a VPN for China, you should go for one that operates a no-logging policy and has top-notch security features.

4. Bandwidth: You wouldn’t want to get cut off right in the middle of your favorite movie. So, make sure you get a VPN that has unlimited bandwidth. Usually, VPNs that have this feature are faster than others.

5. Number of simultaneous device connections: You’ll have to break the bank to get an account for all the devices you wish to use in watching Netflix in China. So, check that the VPN you want to get allows multiple devices to be linked to a single account.

6. Money-back guarantee: It’s a sign of goodwill when a provider refunds your money because of your dissatisfaction with the service. This means that you can get most of the features risk-free for a while. So, ensure that Virtual Private Networks that have this offer top your list when looking for one to use to watch Netflix in China.

SmartDNS, and how it can be used to watch Netflix in China

Another option you have when you want to watch Netflix in China is to use SmartDNS. A SmartDNS is a technology like a VPN that masks your IP address so that you can access geo-restricted sites. But unlike VPNs that have state-of-the-art security and privacy features, SmartDNS works to bypass the restrictions set by Netflix.

SmartDNS does not encrypt data when used to access blocked sites. Moreover, people tend to lean towards VPNs because SmartDNS cannot be used to access Gmail, Youtube, Facebook, or any other mainstream site that’s blocked in China.

Is It Legal to Use a VPN in China?

Using a VPN to get past Netflix’s geo-restriction solves half the problem. The other half yet to be handled is whether you should be using a VPN in China or not.

In China, the government has made a lot of effort in regulating Internet use with the Great Firewall. However, no clear law has been made prohibiting you from using a VPN. Instead, the government has described ways to not use VPNs in the country. Here are some of them:

1. To carry out cybercrimes: It’s no news that cybercrimes are punishable by the law. However, people still engage in this act using VPNs because they have security features that are hard to break.

2. To trade on the dark web: A lot of illicit drugs and illegal weapons are bought and sold on the dark web with VPNs. This is an abuse of the privacy and security features, and China frowns on the use of VPNs for such purposes.

3. To cyberstalk and cyberbully: Another activity China doesn’t want you to do with a VPN is cyberstalking or cyberbullying another person.

As long as you are using the VPN for personal use, you shouldn’t have problems with law enforcement agencies.

Final Thoughts

Netflix doesn’t seem to be partnering with China any time soon, and neither does the country look like it will back down on its Internet regulations. But does that mean you should not watch your favorite movies on Netflix?

In this article, we’ve included two tools to help you watch Netflix in China. We’ve also added five of the best VPNs that’ll make your viewing process hitch-free. You can now catch up with your favorite seasons and movies on Netflix if you are