Updated: May 10, 2017
- Start by getting a VPN account setup
- Install VPN software onto the device(s) you want to get Pandora in Canada on
- Connect to US-based server on VPN
- Go to Pandora and sign in to your existing account or sign up for a new one
- Enjoy Pandora in Canada
How to get Pandora in Canada
in more detail:
Pandora is one of the most popular music streaming services around today. It offers an incredible library of music to users, providing more than enough value for money. I personally use Pandora every other day, especially when I'm "in the zone" with work and don't want to be distracted by noises around me.
One big negative of Pandora, however, is that the service blocks access to users that try to use it outside of either the US, Australia or New Zealand.
I found this out the hard way when I traveled outside of the US to Canada, only to find that my beloved Pandora account was inaccessible!
However, I quickly found out how to get Pandora in Canada by going through a super quick process. So I figured I would write this out to help anyone else facing this same problem -- and here is that guide!
Why is Pandora Blocked in Canada?
Pandora is blocked in Canada due to copyright and distribution rights agreed on between Pandora and the owners of each piece of music offered on the service.
Each artist and band owner on Pandora has agreed to only have their music offered to users listening from the US, Australia or New Zealand.
This means that when you try to do what I did and access Pandora from Canada, you will be presented with an apologetic message informing you that you cannot access the service because you're in Canada, like so:
How does Pandora Block Access from Canada?
The way in which Pandora blocks access to users in Canada (and all other countries outside the three aforementioned nations) is by utilising a process called "geo-blocking".
This process, geo-blocking, is essentially an invisible front door on Pandora that determines the physical location of each and every user that attempts to access the service.
Pandora figures out your location through checking your IP address. Your IP address tells Pandora the location you are in, in that exact moment you attempt to listen to it.
Thus, once I figured out that if I could change my IP address to make my location "appear" in the US, Australia or NZ, then I would be able to get Pandora in Canada -- I researched then quickly found out that I could do this best by using a Virtual Private Network, or "VPN" for short.
How to Use a VPN to get Pandora in Canada
Step 1: Signup for VPN
As mentioned at the intro of this mini guide, I researched a bunch of different VPN service providers and settled on ExpressVPN as the best VPN for my circumstance and budget. So I'll be using ExpressVPN to demonstrate the setup process here.
So first head to ExpressVPN's website and sign up for the price plan that best suits you. Here's a glance at the pricing and setup process:
Step 2: Download & Install VPN
Once you're signed up and have your account setup, the next step is to download the VPN software for whichever device you are planning to listen to Pandora on. ExpressVPN is compatible with essentially every device you could want to use Pandora on:
Step 3: Connect to VPN
The next step once you have the ExpressVPN software downloaded and installed is to simply open it up and choose a location to connect to that is any of the three aforementioned countries that Pandora is offered in.
For me, I just simply chose New York; connected; then my IP address was instantly changed to "appear" within the US:
Step 4: Listen to Pandora in Canada
With your device now connected to either a US, Australian or New Zealand based VPN, you just head over to Pandora and you'll no longer be presented with the apologetic "denied access" message.
Pandora will now check your IP address, "think" you are located in the VPN connection location you chose, and allow you full access to the service from the comfort of your Canadian location. Awesome!
Thus concludes this super quick and simple solution to get Pandora in Canada legally, securely and instantly.
The whole process laid out above will take you no longer than 5 minutes and requires very minimal technical knowledge, which is great.
As mentioned, although I chose ExpressVPN to do this, there are literally hundreds of VPN service providers around today that deliver great services at varying price plans. I personally reviewed most of these and can recommend my absolute top five VPNs for getting Pandora in Canada, which you can check out below:
If you have any feedback or questions on this process, don't hesitate to let me know by commenting below. I'll do my best to reply to you and help you out.
Thanks, and enjoy listening to Pandora in Canada!