With all of the alarming developments in data retention, blocked websites, and internet providers recording your browsing history, many people are looking for the best VPN for Australia in 2019.
Whether you are residing in Australia or perhaps you are living abroad and looking for a simple way to access Australian media, a VPN is the best tool for these endeavors.
What is the best VPN for Australia?
The best all-around VPN for Australia is ExpressVPN.
ExpressVPN currently offers the fastest speeds, a great selection of Australian VPN servers, and it also does very well unblocking Australian TV and other content, such as Netflix and BBC. While it is more expensive than some options, ExpressVPN is currently offering a 49% discount coupon, which includes three months free.
A close runner-up is NordVPN. NordVPN does well with performance and has a huge network of Australian VPN servers. It is also one of the best values you’ll find at only $2.99 per month with this 75% discount.
Now we’ll take an in-depth look at each of the five best VPNs for Australia.
ExpressVPN for Australia
British Virgin Islands
One VPN that consistently performs the best in testing is ExpressVPN. It is based in the British Virgin Islands, which is a good jurisdiction for privacy. ExpressVPN is a verified no logs VPN service that offers very strong encryption secure applications. ExpressVPN apps come with some great features such as leak protection settings, split tunneling and a kill switch (network lock).
If you are looking to access Australian media, such as sports, movies, or TV shows, ExpressVPN is a great choice. It works will with unblocking Australian content if you are living abroad, as well as accessing Netflix, BBC iPlayer, and other media. ExpressVPN is currently ranked as the best VPN for Netflix and consistently works well with the service. (See the ExpressVPN Netflix guide for more test results.)
The user-friendly apps and great customer service are also noteworthy. ExpressVPN’s apps are simple, well-designed, and very easy to use – no matter which device or operating system you are using. You can get immediate 24/7 live chat assistance directly through their website whenever you have a question or need assistance.
ExpressVPN refund policy – All subscription plans come with a 30 day, no-questions-asked, money back guarantee.
- User-friendly and reliable apps
- Exceptional speeds throughout the server network
- 30 day money-back guarantee
- Split tunneling feature (for Mac OS, Windows, and routers)
- Works with Netflix and other streaming services
- 24/7 live chat support
- Slightly more expensive (but currently offering a 49% discount)
ExpressVPN Australian server locations – ExpressVPN currently offers Australian VPN servers in the following locations:
NordVPN for Australia
Another great VPN for Australia is NordVPN. It is based in Panama with a strong no logs policy and great applications that are packed with features. These privacy features include full leak protection, double-hop VPN servers, and Tor-over-VPN servers. NordVPN has also added a great CyberSec feature to block advertisements, tracking, and malicious domains directly through the VPN application.
If you are looking to access Netflix and other Australian media, NordVPN is a great option to consider. It will allow you to access numerous Netflix regions, such as Australia, America, Canada, and even the UK – see the NordVPN Netflix test results. NordVPN is also a great VPN to access Australian sports, TV, and other media.
Just like ExpressVPN, NordVPN offers a full 30-day money back guarantee and 24/7 live chat support directly through their website. Among all the Australian VPNs in this guide, NordVPN comes in at the cheapest at only $2.99 per month when you use this 75% off coupon.
- User-friendly apps
- 30 day money-back guarantee
- Double-hop VPN servers
- Tor-over-VPN servers
- 24/7 live chat support
- No logs
- Works with Netflix
- Competitive price
- Ad blocking feature
- Variable speeds with some servers
NordVPN Australian server locations – NordVPN currently has 173 Australian VPN servers in the following locations:
VPNArea for Australia
Next up on our list of VPNs for Australia is VPNArea – a secure, privacy-focused VPN service based in Bulgaria. VPNArea really offers some great privacy features, such as advanced leak protection settings, obfuscation features, and access to Netflix, BBC iPlayer, SkyGo and other streaming services. It is a no logs VPN service that does not restrict users on torrenting or bandwidth in any way.
If you are in Australia and want to get a VPN with dedicated IP address in a specific country, VPNArea offers that ability. They also allow account sharing and permit six simultaneous connections. Cryptocurrency payment is also supported and all plans come with a 7 day money-back guarantee.
- No logs
- Excellent speed and reliability
- Works with Netflix, BBC iPlayer, and other streaming services
- Anonymous payment options
- Strong security features, with self-hosted DNS
- Ad blocking
- Dedicated IP addresses available
- Large server network
- 24/7 live chat support
- Limited number of Netflix streaming servers (but still works well)
VPNArea Australian server location – VPNArea has a nice selection of server locations in Australia:
VPN.ac for Australia
VPN.ac is another great VPN for Australia with excellent speeds. It is was created by a team of network security professionals and is based in Romania, which is a good jurisdiction for privacy. Extensive testing for the VPN.ac review found the applications to perform exceptionally well in terms of speed and security.
For features, VPN.ac offers double-hop VPN servers, advanced encryption, and a secure proxy browser extension for Firefox, Chrome, and Opera browsers. The one drawback with VPN.ac is that they maintain connection logs, which are used for network security and support, as explained on their website. This includes basic connection data – no browsing history/information. On a positive note, all connection data is deleted daily and there is nothing stored on any VPN server, to further protect customer privacy.
- Dedicated bare-metal servers with self-hosted encrypted DNS
- Excellent speeds with plenty of available bandwidth at all times
- Multi-hop (double VPN) server configurations (18)
- Great obfuscation features with many different encryption options
- Professional and prompt tech support
- Secure proxy browser extensions
- Low price for a very advanced VPN (good value)
- Minimal connection logs (no activity, erased daily)
VPN.ac Australian server location – VPN.ac is somewhat limited when it comes to VPN servers in Australia. They currently offer Australian VPN servers in the following locations:
Perfect Privacy for Australia
The final VPN for Australia we will examine is Perfect Privacy. In terms of advanced privacy and online anonymity, Perfect Privacy leads the pack. It boasts some very advanced features, such as NeuroRouting, multi-hop VPN cascades, and a TrackStop filter which will block advertisements, tracking, phishing, and malware domains at the VPN server level.
Perfect Privacy’s VPN network consists entirely of dedicated, bare-metal servers that are operated in RAM disk mode to ensure no data is ever saved. They have a strong no logs, zero-knowledge policy and also give you an unlimited number of device connections with no bandwidth restrictions.
One drawback, however, is that there are not as many servers in their network when compared to ExpressVPN or NordVPN. In Australia, Perfect Privacy currently only has one server, which is located in Melbourne. Another drawback with Perfect Privacy is that it probably won’t work for unblocking Netflix, as they are mainly focused on privacy and online anonymity.
- Multi-hop VPN chains, up to 4 servers (self-configurable)
- NeuroRouting (dynamic, server-side multi-hop that can be used with all devices)
- Stealth VPN (OpenVPN with Stunnel, SSH, Obfsproxy)
- Dedicated premium servers operating only in RAM DISK mode
- Full IPv6 support (provides both IPv4 and IPv6 addresses)
- Customizable firewall/port-forwarding options
- TrackStop advertisement, tracking, and malware blocker
- Higher price
- Only one Australian VPN server
Why you need a VPN for Australia
So Why do you need a VPN for Australia? Here are four reasons:
Australian data retention and privacy – In April 2017, Australia’s mandatory data retention laws officially went into effect. Officially called the ‘Telecommunications (Interception and Access) Amendment (Data Retention) Bill’ – this law forces internet service providers and telecommunications companies to monitor and record user metadata. The collected data is stored for a full two years and is easily accessible to authorities without a warrant. The best solution for this is a VPN, which will encrypt and anonymize your data, thereby keeping your browsing history secure and hidden from private eyes.
Blocked websites – Currently there are hundreds of websites being blocked in Australia. These website blocks are carried out by internet service providers, usually on behalf of media companies, such as Foxtel and others. As of right now, most of the website blocks are for torrenting and P2P filesharing websites. However, there have also been proposals to extend these website blocks to other content areas as well.
Torrenting and copyright violations – Copyright holders such as Foxtel and Village Roadshow have publicly claimed that they intend to sue Australians for copyright violations in court in the near future. As we will discuss below, the fines and jail time are very serious and are definitely worth the cost of a good VPN subscription.
Online security – A VPN is a critical tool to protect you against security threats on any network. Wireless networks are increasingly compromised – whether you are using free wireless in cafes or hotels – third parties can hack your data through these networks. A VPN protects you against these threats by encrypting all your data, thereby making your online activities and private information unreadable to third parties – even if the network is compromised.
What can Australian ISPs see with & without a VPN?
What can your internet provider or mobile carrier see without a VPN?
If you are not using a good VPN service, internet service providers and mobile carriers can easily record all your data when you are online via DNS requests, which are handled by your ISP (unless you’re using a VPN). This makes your internet provider or your mobile phone company the adversary because they are forced to collect your data under the current law. This is similar to the PRISM surveillance program in the US, where private companies carry out surveillance for government agencies.
What can your internet provider see when you are using a good VPN service?
When you are using a VPN on your computer, your internet traffic and data will be encrypted between your computer and the VPN server you are connected to. This will encrypt and anonymize everything you do online, while also replacing your real IP address with the VPN server’s IP address. This makes you appear to be in the location of the VPN server you are using.
Here’s a basic diagram showing how a VPN protects your data from third parties, courtesy of ExpressVPN:
As you can see in the diagram above, your internet traffic and online activities will be unreadable to third parties, thanks to encryption. However, your ISP will still be able to see that you are online and connected to a VPN server, but they won’t be able to see (or record) anything you’re doing.
Are VPNs legal and safe in Australia?
Yes, VPNs are completely legal to use in Australia.
In fact, VPNs are used every day by businesses around the world for network security, especially with remote workers. As discussed in our main VPN guide, virtual private networks are becoming increasingly common for all different types of users. This includes with businesses, those who want access to Australian media, and an increasing number of people who desire more privacy and security online.
Is an Australian VPN safe?
Regarding the safety of VPNs, yes, they are safe to use, but be careful when selecting the best VPN for your needs.
VPNs are safe to use in Australia, so long as you are using a trustworthy and reputable VPN provider. Granted, there are over 400 VPN providers currently on the market – actually, more if you count all the shady free VPN apps in the Google Play and Apple stores. Unfortunately, the vast majority of VPNs are garbage.
However, as long as you are going with a good VPN provider that keeps your data secure, you should be good to go.
What is the fastest VPN for Australia?
There are many factors that affect speed when using VPN servers in Australia or abroad. Aside from the distance between you and the server, other important speed factors include server quality and server congestion. Your internet provider, computer/device, and network also play a role. Because of all these different factors, the fastest VPN for Australia may vary from user to user.
However, considering everything, I would give ExpressVPN the title of fastest Australian VPN for the following reasons:
- It has consistently performed among the fastest VPNs I have tested (explained further in the ExpressVPN review).
- ExpressVPN operates only high-performance servers with the best bandwidth channels.
- ExpressVPN has recently added two more server locations, giving you a total of four different VPN server locations in Australia.
So while there are many factors to consider, ExpressVPN earns the title fastest VPN for Australia and it also performed very well in my tests for this guide. Below I’m using an ExpressVPN server in Sydney.
With the slow rollout of broadband in Australia, the biggest factor affecting speed may also be your internet service provider, rather than the VPN.
How do I setup a VPN for Australia?
No matter what your technical background is, setting up a VPN for Australia (or any location) is quite simple.
Here are the basic steps:
- Decide which VPN service you want to use and pick a subscription plan (note the current discounts for ExpressVPN and NordVPN).
- Purchase the plan and then download the software (VPN apps) for the devices you want to use with your VPN.
- Connect to an Australian VPN server (or another location) and enjoy all the benefits of your VPN.
If you are completely new to VPNs and are not comfortable with installation and setup, ExpressVPN, VPNArea, and NordVPN offer 24/7 live chat support. You can access this any time through their respective websites, even if you do not yet have a VPN account.
Australian sports with a VPN
Many people who reside outside of Australia are looking for ways to access Australian sport events online. This is where a VPN comes in handy.
A VPN will give you an Australian IP address, which is usually necessary if you want to stream Australian sport from one of the major telecom providers.
For example, you will need an Australian IP address if you want to stream live Australian sport from the Seven network (now 7Plus). Popular sport events in Australia include:
- Australian football
To get the best possible streaming experience, it would be good to connect to the closest Australian VPN server to your location. More locations will also ensure one server is not over-crowded during high-bandwidth times.
Best VPN services for Australia Conclusion
As online privacy and censorship continue to get worse in Australia, it is more important than ever to protect yourself with a good, trustworthy VPN service. This will secure your data and electronic devices from third-party snoopers, such as your internet service provider, while also unlocking any blocked or restricted content.
While there are many VPN services in Australia, it’s important to be careful in your decision as studies have shown that there are many unsafe VPNs currently on the market that do not keep your data secure
All of the VPNs in this guide have been thoroughly tested for leaks, speeds, security, and reliability. Only the VPNs that passed all these tests are recommended in this guide.
Here is an overview of the best VPN services for Australia based on extensive, hands-on testing and research. Check out the respective VPN review to see additional test result information.
(30 day refund)
(30 day refund)
(7 day refund)
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(7 day refund)