Disney+ buffering with VPN

Are you trying to watch Disney+ with a VPN and its lagging, buffering or slowing down? Your VPN might not be fast enough to work reliably with the streaming service.

The good news is there’s a number of easy fixes you can try to resolve this issue.

In this article we’ll explain why you’re coming across Disney+ buffering with VPN problems and how you can fix it so you can get back to watching all your favourite Disney+ content reliably again.

How to fix Disney+ buffering with VPN

Before trying to fix Disney+ buffering with VPN issues, begin by checking your internet connection’s performance. Buffering often stems from a sluggish or inconsistent internet connection.

Conduct a speed test using a reliable tool like Speedtest by Ookla to confirm your connection’s speed and stability. Your internet speed should meet the following standards for seamless streaming on Disney+:

  • For High Definition Content: Minimum 5 MB/s
  • For 4K Content: Minimum 25 MB/s

If your internet speed is below these speeds, reach out to your internet service provider. However, if your internet speed is fast enough but you’re still experiencing buffering issues with Disney+ when using a VPN, consider the following solutions:

  1. Change to a different server

    Disney+ buffering with VPN

    Switching to a different VPN server can often resolve Disney+ buffering issues experienced while using a VPN. This is because some VPN servers may be overcrowded or may have slower connection speeds, which can lead to buffering.

    When you connect to a different server, especially one that is geographically closer to you or less congested, you’re likely to experience a more stable and faster connection.

  2. Change to a different protocol

    Disney+ buffering with VPN

    Switching to a different VPN protocol can significantly improve your Disney+ streaming experience, especially if you’re encountering buffering issues.

    Different VPN protocols offer varying balances of speed and security. For instance, protocols like OpenVPN might provide robust security but can sometimes be slower, potentially leading to buffering. On the other hand, newer protocols like WireGuard are designed for faster performance and may enhance streaming quality.

  3. Update/Restart your VPN

    Disney+ buffering with VPN

    Updating your VPN can be an effective way to fix Disney+ buffering issues. This simple action clears the apps memory and can resolve minor glitches that may be affecting the streaming quality.

    Restarting also allows the VPN connection to reset, potentially resolving any IP address conflicts or connectivity issues that might be causing the buffering.

  4. Restart your router

    Disney+ buffering with VPN

    Restarting your router can be an effective way to fix Disney+ buffering issues when using a VPN. This process, commonly known as “power cycling,” helps by clearing any existing glitches in your router’s memory that might be causing connectivity problems.
    When you restart the router, it re-establishes a fresh connection with your ISP, which can lead to a more stable and faster internet connection.

  5. Upgrade to a faster VPN

    Disney+ buffering with VPN

    Upgrading to a faster VPN can significantly enhance your Disney+ streaming experience, especially if you’re encountering buffering issues while using a VPN.

    From out tests we’ve found ExpressVPN is one of the best VPNs for Disney+ as its renowned for its fast connection speeds, which is crucial for streaming high-quality content without interruptions.

    By providing higher bandwidth and more stable connections, ExpressVPN ensures that the video streams smoothly, reducing the likelihood of buffering.

    Additionally, it has a wide range of servers across different locations, allowing for a better and faster connection regardless of your geographic location. This improvement in speed and stability makes ExpressVPN an excellent choice for an uninterrupted and high-quality Disney+ viewing experience.

The best VPNs for Disney+

ExpressVPN ($6.66/month) is the gold standard of VPNs. With servers in 94 countries and top-tier encryption protocols, it provides users the fastest and most reliable way to unblock streaming services from anywhere in the world.

NordVPN ($2.99/month) has an expansive network of 5,800+ high-speed servers in 60 countries – making it a great option for anyone looking to unblock popular streaming services, at a more mid-range price point. An excellent choice.

Private Internet Access ($2.03/month) is the “best of the rest” VPN. It stands out as a solid streaming VPN with a budget price tag. It’s not as reliable, or fast, as ExpressVPN or NordVPN. Making it a more suitable choice for a casual VPN user.

Ivacy ($1.00/month) the price is the selling point here. If you want a VPN that works with major streaming services “most of the time” and don’t mind a bit of buffering during peak periods, Ivacy is fine. But it’s nowhere near as good as ExpressVPN and NordVPN.

CyberGhost ($2.19/month) is a decent VPN option that offers user-friendly apps and a range of servers worldwide. While it may not lead the pack in all features, it provides a satisfactory balance of privacy, speed, and ease of use.

Why am I coming across buffering issues when watching Disney+ with a VPN?

Buffering issues while watching Disney+ with a VPN can be attributed to several factors:

  1. Internet Speed and Stability: The most common cause is an inadequate internet connection. Streaming in standard definition requires a minimum of 1 MB/s, in high definition at least 5 MB/s, and for 4K content, a minimum of 18 MB/s. If your connection is slower than these speeds, buffering is likely to occur.
  2. VPN Speed Limitations: VPNs can sometimes reduce your internet speed due to the encryption process and the distance between you and the VPN server. If the VPN server is far away or overloaded, it can result in slower speeds and, consequently, buffering.
  3. VPN-Streaming Service Compatibility: Some streaming services like Disney+ have technologies to detect and restrict VPN use. If Disney+ recognises that you’re using a VPN, it may throttle the connection speed or block content, leading to buffering.
  4. Network Congestion: High traffic on your local network, such as multiple devices streaming simultaneously, can affect your streaming quality.
  5. ISP Throttling: Your Internet Service Provider (ISP) might throttle bandwidth during high-usage periods or when detecting streaming services, affecting the streaming quality.
  6. Device Performance: Older or less capable devices might struggle to process high-quality streams, especially 4K content.

Which VPNs work with Disney+?

ExpressVPNNordVPNPIAIvacyCyberGhost
Disney+
Download Speed79 Mbps71 Mbps27 Mbps31 Mbps41 Mbps
Throttling79%71%27%31%41%
Stream quality⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Price per month$6.66$3.79$2.03$1.00$2.19

Disney+ buffering with VPN: FAQs

Q: Why does my Disney+ stream buffer more when I use a VPN?

Answer: Using a VPN can sometimes slow down your internet connection due to the encryption process and the distance to the VPN server. If the server is far or crowded, it can cause your Disney+ stream to buffer.

Q: Can using a different VPN server improve my Disney+ streaming experience?

Answer: Yes, switching to a closer VPN server can improve your streaming experience. Servers nearer to your actual location usually provide faster and more stable connections, reducing buffering on Disney+.

Q: Is it possible that Disney+ is blocking my VPN?

Answer: Disney+ employs technology to detect and block VPNs. If the service identifies that you’re using a VPN, it may result in reduced streaming quality or even block access, leading to buffering issues.

Q: How can I check if my VPN is the reason for Disney+ buffering?

Answer: To determine if your VPN is causing the buffering, try temporarily disabling the VPN and streaming Disney+. If the buffering stops, your VPN might be the issue. Ensure your VPN is optimised for streaming.

Q: Will upgrading my internet package help with VPN-related buffering on Disney+?

Answer: Upgrading your internet package can help, especially if your current speed is below the recommended threshold for streaming Disney+ content (5 MB/s for HD, and 25 MB/s for 4K). Higher internet speeds can compensate for the slowdown caused by a VPN.

The VPN services we recommend for Disney+

1. ExpressVPN 🥇 $6.66/month

The fastest and most reliable streaming VPN

  • Optimized for HD streaming speed
  • Wide network with 160 locations across 94 countries
  • Split tunneling feature to select apps using VPN
  • TrustedServer technology for enhanced security
  • Limited to 5 simultaneous device connections
ExpressVPN review

ExpressVPN is renowned for its fast speeds and strong encryption, making it a great choice for Disney+. Its high-speed servers across numerous countries ensure that streaming Disney+ content is smooth and buffer-free, even in high definition or 4K. Moreover, ExpressVPN is known for its ability to bypass geo-restrictions effectively, allowing users to access Disney+ content from different regions.

It also offers robust privacy features to keep your online activities secure, and its user-friendly interface makes it easy for even beginners to navigate and use.

Read our full ExpressVPN review.

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2. NordVPN $3.19/month

An incredibly fast and trustworthy VPN

  • Extra encryption with Double VPN
  • Over 5,500 servers in 59 countries
  • SmartPlay technology to unblock 400+ geo-restricted streaming services
  • CyberSec feature for ad and malware blocking
  • The interface can be complex for new users
NordVPN Best VPN image

NordVPN is another top contender for streaming Disney+ due to its vast network of servers around the world, which are optimized for speed and reliability. This extensive network ensures that users can connect to a server close to their location, reducing latency and improving streaming quality.

NordVPN is also effective at circumventing geo-blocks, which is essential for accessing Disney+ from locations where it might not be available. Additionally, NordVPN’s strong security protocols and no-logs policy provide an added layer of privacy and security for users.

Read our full NordVPN review.

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3. Private Internet Access $2.03/month

An affordable, reliable VPN

  • Strong encryption for secure connections
  • Extensive server network enhancing connectivity
  • Built-in ad and malware blocking
  • Supports up to 10 devices simultaneously
  • Can have slower speeds
Best VPN list - PIA

PIA is well-regarded for its high levels of security and privacy, making it a solid choice for Disney+ users who are also concerned about their online anonymity. It offers a large number of servers, ensuring that users have plenty of options to find a fast and stable connection for streaming.

PIA’s ability to block ads, trackers, and malware also enhances the streaming experience by reducing unnecessary interruptions and potential security risks.

Read our full Private Internet Access review.

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4. Ivacy $1.00/month

A trustworthy and affordable VPN

  • Cost-effective pricing
  • Servers optimized for P2P activities
  • Strict no browsing logs policy
  • Allows up to 10 simultaneous connections
  • Smaller server network compared to others
Ivacy Best VPN image

Ivacy is known for its affordability and excellent streaming capabilities. It provides dedicated streaming servers that are optimized to deliver high-quality streaming experiences, which is crucial for Disney+ users looking to watch their favorite shows and movies without buffering.

Ivacy also offers a strong suite of security features and the ability to bypass geo-restrictions, enabling access to Disney+ content from various regions at a competitive price point.

Read our full Ivacy review.

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5. CyberGhost $2.19/month

A solid VPN package

  • Large server network with streaming-optimized servers
  • Strong encryption standards for security
  • Specialized servers for streaming, torrenting, and gaming
  • Generous 45-day money-back guarantee
  • Speed performance can be mixed
CyberGhost Best VPN image

CyberGhost stands out with its user-friendly interface and dedicated streaming servers, which are specifically designed to unblock streaming services like Disney+. These servers are optimized to provide fast and reliable connections, essential for a smooth streaming experience.

CyberGhost also offers strong security measures and maintains a strict no-logs policy, ensuring that your streaming activities remain private. Furthermore, its extensive server network allows users to bypass regional restrictions and access a wide range of Disney+ content from different locations.

Read our full CyberGhost review.

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(30-day money-back guarantee)

Patch Bowen
Patch Bowen is an accomplished technology journalist with a solid academic foundation, holding a degree from Auckland University. His expertise spans across a range of tech topics, with a notable focus on product reviews, industry trends, and the impact of technology on society. With his work featured on major New Zealand websites like Stuff.co.nz, thebit.nz, and The Press, Patch has established himself as a credible voice in technology media. His articles are known for their detailed analysis and practical insights, particularly in making complex technological concepts understandable for a broad audience. At ReviewsFire, Patch is renowned for his thorough evaluations and clear, informative writing style. He has a knack for identifying and explaining the nuances of the latest gadgets and digital trends, earning him a reputation as a trusted source for tech advice and information.

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