Last Updated: August 4th, 2019
Fast fix: Click here to use the tool I use to 100% unblock Netflix worldwide right now.
Smartflix has cancelled their service, so I have put together this guide that gives you the solution to access US Netflix and completely unblock Netflix from anywhere in the world. However, as of today - July 1st, 2019- I can confirm that ExpressVPN is working fully to unblock US Netflix and get past the "proxy error" issue.
Smartflix.io was a great service that offered a fix to the constant issue that non-US residing Netflix users had: being unable to access their US Netflix library when located outside the US. However, the solution that Smartflix offered can be 100% achieved by following the simple, quick steps in this guide. It involves using a VPN, and we have even taken the time to review the most popular VPN services to recommend with confidence the best Netflix VPN to go with. No technical expertise required!
What You Will Learn in This Guide
How to Unblock Netflix
(from ANYWHERE in the world)
How to Access US Netflix
(from ANYWHERE outside the US)
Netflix Proxy Error Fix
Total time to do all this: 5 to 7 minutes
Step #1: What problem are you having?
Is Netflix completely inaccessible in your current location?
Can you access it, but are outside the US and want the US Netflix?
Are you getting the fatal Netflix proxy error message?
The good news is - it does not matter which of the above three problems you are having - the solution steps in this guide will solve all of them. It just helps to clarify which problem you're currently experiencing, as you will be able to jump to the steps that will fix your issue right away -- But we recommend reading Step #2 below quickly anyway!
So, what problem do you want to fix?
(Click one of the options below to get straight the solution)
STEP #2: Get the Secret Weapon
You may have heard one of your friends talk about a piece of software called a "VPN". A Virtual Private Network (yes, that's "VPN") might sound a bit technical or complex - but in reality it is a super simple little app that lets you do amazingly powerful things on your computer.
You don't need to know exactly how a VPN does what it does - but it does help to quickly understand what it does - so here's a simple definition:
Check out our Ultimate Guide to VPNs for a more detailed definition
Why does a VPN help to unblock Netflix, access US Netflix or fix the Netflix proxy error?
It's simple (yet genius) actually. When you connect to a VPN, you change your IP address. By changing your IP address you are changing your virtual location, which Netflix thinks is your actual physical location.
This matters. It's because of your physical location that you either a) cannot access Netflix at all or b) cannot access the US version of Netflix, and a VPN allows you to choose any virtual location in the world to make Netflix think that is now your physical location. Pretty cool, right?
Now it does bare saying that there are alternative methods and ways to allow you to change your device's IP address, other than using a VPN. For example, two other popular was are to use a DNS service or a proxy (either as software or more commonly in your browser).
Why Choose a VPN for Netflix?
Funnily enough, Smartflix was a 'smart' DNS service, which gave you access to Netflix in the exact same way that we are explaining to you in this guide. A DNS service functions essentially the same as a VPN -- with one big difference: you are not given any encryption protection on your data when you connect to a DNS.
Similarly, a proxy service offers zero privacy protection on your internet usage when you use one. There are literally hundreds of free proxy services you can use. The most commonly used ones are free websites that you can just Google and go to -- then use as your "window" to browse the web through.
With that said, we believe the most important reason to choose a VPN over a proxy to change your IP address is because even the most popular and fully-effective free proxy service has little-to-zero support maintained with it, since the creators of such proxies are making no money from them and thus have very little motivation to work on the service the way VPN service providers do.
Lastly, when it comes to effectively, 100% unblocking Netflix around the world consistently, both DNS and proxy services regularly fail. Even if you find a provider that makes this work -- it is not uncommon for that service to be "caught" by Netflix and banned from accessing the service altogether.
So, to break it down is Laymen's terms, here is why a VPN is the most highly recommended method to unblock Netflix from around the globe over alternative approaches:
Changes your IP address
Protects your privacy
100% unblocks Netflix
Has customer support
Netflix has waged war against VPNs that let people unblock the service and/or access the US version from around the world.
This means that not all VPNs will work to unblock Netflix.
So, which VPNs do work with Netflix?
Before you run to Google typing in "VPN" and downloading the first one that shows up in the results -- you need to know that not all VPNs work with Netflix!
To find the best Netflix VPN for you, it really does pay to do your homework. You see, VPN service providers offer their services at varying prices and levels of "sophistication" or "power" - depending on what you are particularly wanting to use a VPN for.
Care About Privacy, too?
For example, some VPNs offer much more high-tech and secure privacy encryption protection than others, simply by putting more effort into the creation, maintaining and constant developing of their service. To give you some quick reference on this (should be wanting to also give yourself solid privacy protection while looking for the best VPN for Netflix) then you simply need to look at the "protocols" that a VPN uses on their servers. 99% of VPN providers state this transparently on their website.
How About Connection Speed?
Another important part of a VPN to consider when choosing the best Netflix VPN for you - is the actual speed of your connection when you are connected to the VPN itself.
Why? Because there is no VPN on earth that does not (no matter how "insignificantly") slow down your internet speed once you are connected to it. Now, VPNs have been around and evolved for more than 15 years at this point, so of course the top providers out there manage to offer speeds that basically feel like you are not losing any quickness on your connection at all when on their service. That is incredibly impressive, but like we said - this is not the case with every VPN on the market today. So it does pay to find one that offers these fantastic speeds.
This consideration is arguably one of the two most important to factor in when choosing your Netflix VPN, because you are looking to stream TV shows and movies, right? So a fast connection will reduce any wait-time when you start streaming!
Connection Stability, Perhaps?
Yes, this is the one that you need to consider to prevent that awful buffering wheel of death when using Netflix.
What could be worse than you choosing a VPN, downloading and installing it, launching it, successfully unblocking Netflix (yey!) ... to only then be unable to actually WATCH ANYTHING because the VPN connection keeps dropping out, causing you to either have to keep restarting/pausing what you're watching - or sit and watch that soul-destroying loading icon (aka the buffering wheel of death).
So before you choose your VPN, this point needs to be considered careful. You want to choose a provider that gives you server connections that do not drop out, and yes - there are some VPN services that can effectively offer zero drop-outs of your connection. Go. For. Them!
OK OK OK, I get it. So how the heck do I find the best VPN for Netflix??!
There is good news though. A select few VPN providers are constantly working hard to stay ahead of Netflix and allow their users to unblock Netflix securely and completely.
We have reviewed all the current VPN service providers available (there are over 100 of them, so you're welcome!) and have tested each one's ability to unblock Netflix and access US Netflix worldwide.
Below is our list of the best VPNs that 100% work with Netflix. We re-check the VPNs in this list every 2 weeks to be absolutely sure that they work:
✓ VPNs that work with Netflix - Updated December 5th, 2017
#1 EXPRESS VPN (our top pick) ★★★★★
There is no VPN better than ExpressVPN when wanting to unblock Netflix and easily access US Netflix from anywhere in world. ExpressVPN has worked non-stop for almost 8 years to produce a VPN that is unparalleled in terms of quality of service and value for money. So effective is this service that "Express VPN Netflix" is now a well-known response for many people when asked the question "What's your favourite Netflix library?"
This VPN offers a huge list of server locations. That matters because the more server locations you have to choose from; the more "physical locations" you can make Netflix think you are currently located in.
In addition, you have the choice of multiple US-based server locations that allow you to access the US version of Netflix easily with on click.
Most importantly, the speed of internet you get when connected to ExpressVPN is easily the fastest offered by any VPN service.
So when you're watching the latest episode of your favourite Netflix series you won't have to worry about the stream stopping and starting constantly. This is, for us, the Netflix VPN you want.
✓ 30-day money back guarantee
✓ Best at Unblocking Netflix
✓ US Netflix Library Available
✓ Fastest Speeds Available
✓ No Connection Drop-offs
✓ Top-level Privacy Protection
✓ Best Value for Money
Need to use different login codes when using different devices on the same account.
ExpressVPN app on smartphone
#2 PureVPN ★★★★
PureVPN comes in as the second best VPN option when it comes to unblocking Netflix and accessing US Netflix from around the globe. Also a long-established VPN provider, PureVPN offer a solid service with good stable connections.
PureVPN: Not the fastest, but works
You get a smaller number of servers to choose from with PureVPN, but they are secure and you do have multiple US-based locations, which is vital to accessing US Netflix from outside the States.
If you can afford a slightly less consistently fast connection then PureVPN may be the one for you. Your Netflix VPN streaming should not be affected by this connection speed, however through our regular testing we do find that PureVPN servers are more regularly blocked by Netflix than ExpressVPN's.
With all this said, PureVPN does have a lower price point in comparison to our top pick, ExpressVPN, so if saving a couple bucks is a major priority for you then go with PureVPN.
✓ 7-day money back guarantee
✓ Has been known to unblock Netflix
✓ Fast speeds
✓ Very little connection drop-offs
✓ Solid privacy encryption
✓ Good for lower budget customers
Although fairly priced, not consistent at unblocking Netflix.
The US servers offered do not get passed Netflix's wall, so US Netflix library is almost certainly not accessible outside the US with this VPN.
#3 IPVanish ★★★
Our third pick for VPN service that works to unblock Netflix and access US Netflix globally is IPVanish. This provider is the least consistent of the three in our list to keep working with Netflix. However, at present this is the case - so we've included it as an option.
When you actually combine the good speeds, solid connections, security levels and overall pricing - IPVanish is a really decent VPN provider to go with. You have a comparable amount of server locations (including multiple US ones) to choose from as with ExpressVPN and PureVPN.
All in all though, this is an accurate and up-to-date guide on how you can 100% successfully Unblock Netflix, access American Netflix and even bypass the dreaded Netflix proxy error. So we cannot put this VPN provider higher in the list, since it has regularly proven to be blocked by Netflix.
For right now though, they are getting past Netflix and allowing their users to access the service without issue. So feel free to give them a shot. As with ExpressVPN and PureVPN; IPVanish offers all first time users a generous free trial period. Might as well give them a shot. This may end up being the best Netflix VPN for your budget/preference.
✓ 7-day money back guarantee
✓ Has been known to unblock Netflix
✓ Medium connection speeds
✓ Privacy is not protected to high level
US-based company, so privacy is not super protected.
Not proven to unblock Netflix consistently.
Price is quite high for not being an effective solution for this issue.
Support has been known to not be the fastest.
See how the top VPNs compare against one another:
How to Unblock Netflix 2019
So now that you know what a VPN is and why it is the perfect solution to unblock Netflix, let's quickly run through the exact steps required to do this now. Don't worry -- a 10 year old or your great-grandmother can go through these steps no problem. No technical knowledge is required at all!
All you're going to need to do this is an internet connect, some spare 3 minutes of your time, the money it would've cost you to buy two cups of starbucks, and you'll be successfully accessing Netflix from wherever you are in the world, at any time. Let's do this!
Step 1: Get a VPN Account (we recommend ExpressVPN)
Since ExpressVPN has proved to be the most reliable for this solution, we will use it as the best Netflix VPN while we go through these quick steps. So go ahead and visit the ExpressVPN website, choose the account you want (they offer monthly, 6-month and yearly options) and get your account setup.
Step 2: Download and Install the VPN
Once you have your VPN account setup, you will be taken to the downloads page. Here you can download the VPN software onto whichever device you want to Unblock Netflix on. ExpressVPN works on basically every device you would ever want to watch Netflix from, including your laptop, smartphone, smartTV and even your home router.
List of devices that you can install ExpressVPN and unblock Netflix on
Step 3: Connect to a Server and Enjoy Netflix
After you have gone through the super quick and simple download + installation process for ExpressVPN on your device, the only thing left to do is open up the VPN, choose a server location within which Netflix is available, click "Connect" and in a matter of seconds you will be connected.
To give you an accurate display of how this connection process actually looks with ExpressVPN on your device, here is how the software looks on my Macbook when I am connecting:
As you can see, the interface itself is as simple as any software could really be. All you need to do to get the VPN setup and connected is launch the software, choose a server location from the clear list they offer, then click the huge button in the middle. After a few moments, you will be connected and ready to access Netflix.
To further demonstrate how easy to use this software is across multiple devices, here is how it looks on my Android smartphone:
Again, very clean and minimalistic interface, right? Using a VPN of this quality really does require near-zero technical ability or knowledge. You simply download the app from your device's respective app store (Google Play Store for Android; iTunes for Apple mobile devices), login to the app, open it, choose a server then connect. Simple as that.
Here's how the app looks on my Android phone once it is successfully connected and allowing me my 100% effective Netflix VPN access:
Of course, if you want to access the US version of Netflix, you would not connect to a "London" based server like I do in the above screenshot example. You would just click on one of the many US-based server locations that ExpressVPN offer then connect. We explain this in a little more detail in the next section below, should you need more understanding of this part.
Regardless, when you are connected to the VPN, you will have successfully changed your IP address to make your location appear within the location of the server you chose to connect to. Now when you open up Netflix you will have complete access to it. Netflix will be unblocked. Enjoy your favourite shows for as long as you like!
How to Access US Netflix 2019
The moment you leave the US, your IP address changes to reflect your non-US location. So if you then visit Netflix, you will be presented with a library of movies and shows that are different from the US version. This is incredibly annoying considering your favourite content may only be available on the US version of Netflix.
Fear not. In less than 5 minutes you are about to never have this problem ever again. Let's go through the steps now:
Step 1: Setup a VPN Account (we suggest ExpressVPN)
Once again, ExpressVPN is recommended as the best Netflix VPN to go with. We recommend going with it for this solution because this VPN provider has proven to be the most consistent with allowing you to access US version outside the States. We regularly review the most popular VPN providers on the market right now and test each one for its ability to access US Netflix from non-US locations, and ExpressVPN comes out top every time. So we will use it as the example as we walk you through the quick steps now.
Head to the ExpressVPN website, sign up for an account and choose the duration you want to use the software (1-month, 6-month or annual options are available):
Step 2: Download the VPN and Install it onto Your Device
After you have created your ExpressVPN account, you will be taken automatically to the "downloads area" on their site. Here you will see a list of all the different devices you can install the software onto. You will see that any device you would ever want to access US Netflix from works with ExpressVPN. Here's how it looks on my Android device:
How the ExpressVPN app looks on an Android smartphone
Step 3: Connect to a US-based server and Access US Netflix
Within a few moments you will have gone through the automatic download and installation process, and will have ExpressVPN on your device(s) ready to use. You then simply open up the VPN and select a US-based server location and click "Connect".
Once connected, you will have just successfully changed your device's IP address from your non-US one to a US-based one. Now when you go to access Netflix, open it up and search for any movie or show that is only available on the US version of Netflix and it will be available for you.
You have just successfully achieved US Netflix-library access from outside the US. Enjoy!
Netflix Proxy Error Fix 2019
It's the worst. You settle in for some Netflix and chill, only to be presented with the following error message:
Netflix have a page explaining why this is happening.
Why is this happening? Well, you were smart to use a VPN or some other IP-protecting software, because you care about protecting your online data privacy. However, Netflix decided recently that too many users were using a VPN purely to access the service for - well - the first two reasons we state in this very guide.
VPNs allowed users to watch Netflix from locations where the service is not available and even access the US-version (aka the best version) of Netflix from outside of the US. Luckily, there are still a select few VPN providers that work with Netflix without getting this annoying proxy error:
✓ Netflix Proxy Error Fix (with a VPN) - Updated July 13th, 2019
Since you are clearly already using a VPN or similar IP-protecting software, we don't need to walk you through the steps of setting one up.
Instead, we will simply recommend the VPN provider that has remained the most effective and top rated Netflix VPN proxy error solution. This provider is ExpressVPN. Why? They are the most consistent VPN at bypassing the proxy error message of: “You seem to be using an unblocker or proxy. Please turn off any of these services and try again.”
We take pride on regularly, rigorously testing all VPN providers every two weeks to see if Netflix is blocking them or not. ExpressVPN has consistently remained the top provider to allow users to access Netflix without getting the proxy error. So confident are ExpressVPN with this that they boldly state it on their website:
So if your current VPN or IP-protecting software is not getting past the Netflix proxy error then get ExpressVPN, download it, connect to a US-based server location and bypass the proxy error instantly and securely. This is by far the best Netflix VPN fix available right now.
There you have it. You now have the knowledge and tools in your arsenal to achieve any of the fixes laid out in this guide. Whether you are in a remote location within which Netflix is blocked from viewing, and thus want to simply unblock Netflix (regardless of what country library you want), or if you want that beloved US-Netflix library with all the most popular shows and movies exclusive only to US residents -- you can do it!
As we stated at the very start of this guide, the time it takes to complete any of these solutions is less than 5 minutes for most people; maximum 7 minutes. From getting your VPN account setup, the software downloaded, installed, launched and then connected - you'll be enjoying Netflix in no time.
At the end of the day, we can't blame Netflix for the restrictions and blocking it places depending on where a user is accessing the media streaming service from. There is a reason that Netflix VPN unblocking is not a simple 5 second fix, since there are huge Hollywood licence restrictions for each country the service is made available in, that Netflix are trying to adhere to. This is the same reason such geo-restrictions are placed on most media streaming services like Hulu, HBO and even open-source services like Kodi.
With that said though - the world is becoming more and more interconnected and before we know it, it will feel like the earth is just one big singular country without borders, so with global connectivity only growing every day; it makes sense that you shouldn't feel bad about finding this solution to unblock Netflix - and doing it!
Thus, we hope you found this Netflix VPN unblock guide super helpful and you're now happily enjoying your favourite TV show and/or movie from the comfort of wherever your home in the world is.
Should you have any questions or comments about this guide at all, please do not hesitate to let us know by throwing a quick comment below. We really appreciate any feedback and will respond to every comment we get.