How to watch US Netflix in Sweden

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How to Watch US Netflix in Sweden

Updated: February 1, 2017

  1. Begin by getting a VPN account setup
  2. Next, install VPN software onto device(s) you want to watch US Netflix in Sweden on
  3. Open VPN software and connect to US-based server
  4. Then go to Netflix and sign into your account or create a new one if you have not already
  5. Enjoy US Netflix in Sweden

How to watch US Netflix in Sweden in more detail:

NOTE: I have illustrated this guide using ExpressVPN which in my experience is the best VPN on the market for streaming Netflix. You can find out more here:


Sweden is a beautiful country. Beautiful scenery. Beautiful buildings. Beautiful people. Sweden has it all. But (and forgive me for being so blunt here Swede’s), their TV really, really sucks. Yes, they broadcast their fair share of repeats of US shows, but they are so far behind the curve on the big TV shows it is unreal. We are enjoying a golden age of TV in the US, but it is yet to reach this particular Scandinavian oasis.

I have lived here for a few years now, and have only recent got sick of trying to binge-watch all the shows my friends and family are talking about on my short trips home. I knew I couldn’t access Netflix here because I had tried shortly after arriving for the first time and got the usual error message.

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But there had to be a way. It was time for some research, and actually a solution that was simple, cheap, and legal, didn’t take long to present itself. A VPN.


Why is US Netflix not Available in Sweden?

Firstly, the reason why US Netflix cannot be accessed in Sweden is a straightforward one. They only have the rights to stream their shows in the USA. The rights to stream the shows in Sweden are either held by another broadcaster, or have not been sold at all.

Either way, this means that Netflix does not have permission to stream their shows in Sweden and have to stop users there from being able to do so.

This means employing a technology known as geo-blocking, which stops users located in Sweden, and any other country that isn’t the USA, from watching US Netflix.


How is US Netflix Blocking Access in Sweden?

Every internet user has a unique IP Address which is transmitted to all of the sites that you visit. This IP Address contains various pieces of information including your geographic location.

Geo-blocking is a simple and commonly used technique which reads this information and restricts access to certain sites and services if you are not located in the right place. So US Netflix employs geo-blocking to stop anyone who is not located within the USA from using their service.

Users will only be able to see an error message which informs them that because they are not located within one of the 50 US States (or the District of Columbia of course) they cannot use the service or watch any of their programs.

This might seem like an insurmountable barrier, but as it turns out this isn’t the case, and working around geo-blocking using a VPN is actually pretty easy. If you are keen to learn more, read on, and I will show just how easy the process is.


How to Use a VPN to Watch US Netflix in Sweden

Step 1: Sign up for VPN

At the top of this piece I said that my VPN of choice for watching Netflix in Sweden is ExpressVPN. I have reviewed many of them, and this is the one which has consistently delivered the best service.

If you decide to sign up with ExressVPN you can follow one of the links in this article to their website. Once there, you will have the option to sign up for various different packages, depending on the length of time you want to subscribe, and your budget.

Remember, ExpressVPN offers a free thirty day trial, meaning you can get your money back at any time in the first thirty days of your subscription if you are not happy with the service.

Once you have chosen the right package for you, you will be taken through to the payment screen. Here you have the choice of a wide variety of payment methods and can follow some simple instruction to complete the process.

If this all sounds very easy, that’s because it is. But to make it even easier, I include some screenshots of each stage of the process below.

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Step 2: Download & Install VPN

After you have completely your purchase, you will have the option to download and install the ExpressVPN software.

Choose the right option from the menu provided for the device you are using, and then follow the simple step-by-step instructions to install the software on your machine.

Depending on which package you have subscribed to, you may also be given the option of downloading ExpressVPN onto other devices as well.

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Step 3: Connect to US-based Server on VPN

Once the download and installation has finished, the VPN will open and you will have the option to choose which of their many servers to connect to. As you want to access US Netflix, you will need to pick a US-based server. ExpressVPN has a number of these to choose from, and it doesn’t matter which one you opt for.

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You will then have to wait a few seconds for the service to connect. Here's how this looks on my mobile Android device:

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Once the connection has been made, all the sites you visit and online services you use will receive an IP Address from that server, rather than directly from you. Therefore as far as US Netflix is concerned, you are in the USA and therefore permitted to watch as many of their programs as you like.


Step 4: Setup US Netflix Account

Once you are connected to the web via ExpressVPN, you can either use your existing Netflix subscription, or if you need to sign up for a new account.

Having a US Credit Card will certainly make this process easier, but at the time of writing, you can work around this by generating a legitimate US Zip Code to use in the signup. Netflix do not, to my knowledge, check the Zip Codes that are entered.

Once you have gone through the registration process, Netflix is yours to use exactly as you see fit.


Conclusion

It really is as simple as that. I can now settle down in my Stockholm apartment and watch whichever Netflix program takes my fancy. More importantly, I no longer have to endure what passes for entertainment on the Swedish networks.

Let me know how this process works for you using the comments below. I know Netflix and some VPN’s can change their processes at short notice, so if you encounter something different to what is detailed here, do let me know.

I should also say that whilst ExpressVPN has always been my pick of the VPNs, if you don’t fancy it there are of course plenty of other VPNs on the market that you can use. We have reviewed many on this site, and above are out pick of the Top 5 for streaming Netflix in Sweden.

2 Answers

  1. Dave Morton
    May 20, 2016 at 4:47 am

    Hi there David,

    This is a great, easy-to-understand article…. tack så mycket !!

    I (we) am like yourself, transplanted US residents now living in Göteborg for the past 2+ yrs. We completely love it here in this beautiful, wonderful country, but also miss access to US Netflix programing. While definitely enjoying the Scandinavian Netflix programs we can access here, the total selection is meager…… and these only become available a year or so later at that.

    So I have a question for you please, before attempting the VPN approach. I should preface this by saying that we’ve had our (US-based) Netflix account for several years before moving here. We continue to log in and use it from here, but then geo-blocking kicks in……. as you correctly point out.

    We access Netflix thru either of 2 different iPads. Is it technically possible to have one iPad remain as-is (the Swedish Netflix device), and install VPN access on the other iPad (to now become the US Netflix device)……… AND continue using our existing Netflix account for accessing by either device? Is this possible, do you know of any downsides to doing so, etc.?

    Your guidance will be much appreciated.

    Thanks, Dave M.

    1. Chris Beattie
      May 25, 2016 at 1:24 pm

      Hey Dave!

      Allow me to answer this — very good — question. If you use Netflix on two devices that “located” in different locations (even via a VPN) there will be no issues with Netflix playback. You’re all set!

      Let me know how you get on.

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