Hotstar not working with VPN

Hotstar, also known as Disney+ Hotstar, is a popular Indian streaming service owned by Disney. You’ll need a VPN to watch its selection of TV shows, movies, and even live sport if you’re outside India, but what happens if your VPN no longer works with Hotstar?

Unfortunately, it means Disney+ Hotstar has managed to block the IP address your VPN has given you. It’s a pain to get around, but we’ve found several fixes that worked for us.

Trying to fix Hotstar not working with your VPN? Follow this guide to get back to watching all your favourite shows on Disney+ Hotstar.

Which VPNs work with Disney+ Hotstar?

ExpressVPNNordVPNPureVPNSurfsharkPIA
Disney+ Hotstar
Download Speed79 Mbps71 Mbps31 Mbps27 Mbps41 Mbps
Throttling79%71%31%27%41%
Stream quality⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Price per month$6.66$3.79$3.78$2.49$2.03

Disney+ Hotstar not working with VPN: Fixes

Total Time: 5 minutes

  1. Check if your VPN works on another device

    Aha not working with VPN

    If your VPN works with Disney+ Hotstar on your smartphone, but not your computer, then you know your VPN isn’t the problem. If your VPN does work on one device, jump to Step 3 below.

  2. Contact your VPNs live chat service

    Aha not working with VPN

    Cycle through your VPN’s available servers. If you only have a few options available to you, go to your VPN’s website and find the Live Chat feature (if they have one) and ask for a specific server number that works with Disney+ Hotstar.

    This is the single most effective way to diagnose if your VPN is the problem or not. If they can’t point you towards a server that works with Disney+ Hotstar then you know your VPN is the problem.

  3. Delete your cookies

    Aha not working with VPN

    Deleting your cookies can potentially fix VPN issues. Accumulated or corrupted cookies in a browser might interfere with the way websites and online services function, especially when using a VPN.

    Clearing these cookies removes any old or problematic data, thereby ensuring a cleaner slate for your VPN connection to operate. This can help in establishing a more stable connection and resolving conflicts between the VPN and certain web services like Disney+ Hotstar.

  4. Connect to a different Indian server

    Aha not working with VPN

    If your VPN has suddenly stopped working with Disney+ Hotstar, it might be because the IP address your VPN has given you has been identified and blocked by the streaming service.

    Changing to a different Indian server will give you a different Indian IP address, and if that one hasn’t been blocked, your VPN will work with Disney+ Hotstar again.

  5. Reinstall or update your VPN

    Aha not working with VPN

    Removing your VPN and its settings from your device and starting again is a good way to get the most up-to-date settings configured on your devices without much effort.

    If you don’t want to reinstall the software, you can always check to see if there’s an update available to download any fixes your service may have introduced.

  6. Switch VPN protocols

    Aha not working with VPN

    VPN protocols determine how a VPN works. When you use a VPN, the protocol is responsible for hiding your data and rerouting it via VPN servers.

    If Disney+ Hotstar isn’t working with your VPN, it might be because the protocol you’re using is no longer working with the service.

    If your VPN allows it, try changing to a different protocol to see if that fixes the issue.

  7. Upgrade your VPN

    Aha not working with VPN

    If all of the above fails, you should consider upgrading to a high-end VPN. We recommend ExpressVPN ($6.66/month) or NordVPN ($3.79/month) for Disney+ Hotstar.

    For more information, check out our VPN list below to see which VPN suits your needs and budget.

Countries where Disney+ Hotstar is available

Here’s a list of countries where Disney+ Hotstar is available:

  • India
  • Indonesia
  • Malaysia
  • Thailand

It’s also available as a standalone service (No Disney+ content) in other locations:

  • Canada
  • Singapore
  • United Kingdom

It’s important to note that India has the largest content library, so it’s best to connect to India to make the most out of Disney+ Hotstar.

Why won’t my VPN work with Disney+ Hotstar?

If you’re getting the “VPN Detected” error when trying to watch Hotstar, it’s a sign that the streaming service has blocked the IP address your VPN has given you.

Hotstar blocks VPNs because it doesn’t have the rights to broadcast its content internationally. It’s available in several other regions, including Malaysia and Thailand, and as a standalone service in Canada, Singapore, and the UK.

If you’re using a VPN to watch Hotstar outside these countries, it could result in Hotstar breaching the copyright and licensing agreements it has with its content partners. Breaches like these often result in massive financial repercussions.

To prevent that from happening, Hotstar blocks VPNs from accessing its service.

How does Hotstar block VPNs?

Disney+ Hotstar employs various methods to hinder VPNs from accessing their platform:

  • IP address blacklisting: Disney+ Hotstar maintains lists of IP addresses known to belong to VPN providers. When a connection attempt originates from a blacklisted address, access gets restricted.
  • GeoIP database analysis: Disney+ Hotstar might utilise third-party services that provide geographical data based on IP addresses. This allows them to identify potential VPN usage by comparing the user’s IP location with known VPN server locations.
  • Traffic analysis: Examining data transmission patterns can sometimes reveal inconsistencies that indicate VPN usage.
  • Session characteristics: Certain characteristics of a VPN connection, like rapid IP address changes, might be red flags for the platform’s security system.

Does Disney+ Hotstar still work with VPNs?

Disney+ Hotstar still works with VPNs. However, you need to use a VPN that can stay ahead of Hotstar’s VPN blocks. 

It’s important to know that India has cracked down on VPN use within its borders. The government announced “India’s data laws force VPNs to retain user traffic logs for up to 5 years, giving authorities easy access to all your data.” This goes against the online security and anonymity that a VPN provides. And because of this, a lot of VPNs have stopped supporting Indian servers for customers to connect to.

To get around this issue, some VPNs have opened virtual Indian servers. An Indian virtual server is physically located outside of India, but is configured to provide users with an Indian IP address. This setup allows VPN users to access content and services specifically available in India, despite the actual server being elsewhere.

Hotstar will sometimes identify an IP address provided by ExpressVPN and NordVPN. However, when these IP addresses are blocked, ExpressVPN and NordVPN will close them and open a new unblocked one. 

This means there will always be an IP address for you to connect to, allowing you to stream Disney+ Hotstar from anywhere in the world reliably. 

Best VPNs to watch Disney+ Hotstar

1. ExpressVPN

The fastest and most reliable VPN of 2024

  • Physical servers in 104 countries
  • Brilliant for unblocking streaming services
  • Very high-speed Lightway protocol
  • Available on almost any device
  • Very secure
  • Pricey
  • Only 8 simultaneous devices
  • No addons
ExpressVPN

Streaming: ExpressVPN stands out for Disney+ Hotstar streaming due to its fast server speeds and reliable Indian virtual servers, ensuring seamless and buffer-free streaming of Disney+ Hotstar’s extensive library of regional Indian content.

Servers: ExpressVPN is ideal for Disney+ Hotstar due to its highly optimised Indian servers that provide fast and reliable connections, ensuring a smooth streaming experience of Disney+ Hotstar’s diverse Indian content without buffering issues.

Privacy: ExpressVPN’s privacy measures include passing independent audits by cybersecurity firms like Cure53 and F-Secure, ensuring a strong level of security and no significant weaknesses in its macOS, Linux, and Windows apps. More details can be found in the audit reports available online.

Price: ExpressVPN offers three payment plans: a 1-month option at $12.95/month, a 6-month option at $9.99/month, and a 12-month option at $6.67/month. Payment methods include major credit cards, PayPal, Bitcoin, and other systems, accommodating a wide range of users.

Speeds: ExpressVPN maintains high download speeds with minimal drop-off, ensuring efficient performance. Tests showed a slight decrease in upload speeds, but download speeds remained fast across various server locations, including the US, UK, and Vietnam.

Download Speeds (Mbps)Upload Speeds (Mbps)
VPN off937.07520.93
ExpressVPN US server824.626.96
ExpressVPN UK server794.953.70
ExpressVPN Vietnam server761.903.81

Read our full ExpressVPN review.

Special Offer for you!

(30-day money-back guarantee)

2. NordVPN

An excellent, affordable, and fast VPN option for 2024

  • Affordable pricing
  • Effective streaming access
  • Diverse server types
  • Solid speeds
  • Useful add-ons
  • Strong security
  • Limited server locations
  • No virtual servers
NordVPN

Streaming: NordVPN is highly effective for bypassing geo-restrictions on streaming platforms like Disney+ Hotstar, as well as Netflix and BBC iPlayer. It has shown consistent success in connecting to various streaming services without noticeable issues.

Servers: NordVPN’s server network spans 60 countries, with plentiful server in India for Disney+ Hotstar. While this is below the average of 71 countries for the top 20 VPNs, its commitment to physical servers ensures faster and more reliable connections.

Privacy: NordVPN’s secure connection and no-logs policy have been verified via three independent audits, including one by Deloitte. The audits have confirmed NordVPN’s adherence to its no-logs policy, ensuring user privacy.

Price: NordVPN offers three pricing plans: Complete, Plus, and Standard. The 2-year plan for the Standard package is priced at $3.19/month, the 1-year plan at $4.99/month, and the monthly plan at $12.99/month. It accepts major credit cards and various payment systems.

Speeds: Below is a table showing the speeds tested for NordVPN. From our tests in New Zealand, NordVPN displayed very good speeds, although slightly behind ExpressVPN, but significantly faster than many other VPNs on the market.

Download Speeds (Mbps)Upload Speeds (Mbps)
No VPN (New Zealand)937.07520.93
NordVPN US server710.906.98
NordVPN UK server531.123.73

Read our full NordVPN review.

Special Offer for you!

(30-day money-back guarantee)

3. PureVPN

A mid-range VPN that balances performance and price

  • Affordable
  • Unblocks major streaming services
  • Use on up to 10 devices simultaneously
  • Streamlined user interface
  • No log audit verified by KPMG
  • Several free add-ons
  • Buffering on BBC iPlayer at peak times
  • Past concerns with “no log” policy
PureVPN

Streaming: PureVPN is a great choice for Disney+ Hotstar thanks to its dedicated Indian virtual servers that optimize speed and connectivity, enhancing the streaming experience of Disney+ Hotstar’s diverse Indian programming.

Servers: PureVPN is well-suited for Disney+ Hotstar as it offers specialised Indian virtual servers that are optimised for streaming, providing fast and uninterrupted access to Disney+ Hotstar’s rich catalogue of Indian entertainment.

Privacy: PureVPN has faced criticism in the past for its privacy policies. However, it has recently undergone a no-log audit verified by KPMG in the past 12 months, aiming to reassure users about its commitment to privacy.

Price: PureVPN offers three payment options: a 1-month plan at $10.95/month, a 1-year plan at $3.74/month, and a 2-year plan at $1.96/month. PureVPN accepts all major credit cards, PayPal, and a variety of other digital payment options.

Speeds: Below is a table that gives you an idea of the speed performance you can expect when using PureVPN. The VPN has shown variable download speeds across different streaming servers, with some experiencing significant drop-offs during peak times.

Download Speeds (Mbps)Upload Speeds (Mbps)
No VPN189.44139.82
PureVPN UK Server24.3198.99
PureVPN US Server49.83106.52

Read our full PureVPN review.

Special Offer for you!

(30-day money-back guarantee)

4. Surfshark

Affordable and secure VPN with unlimited device policy of 2024

  • Attractive pricing for long-term subscriptions
  • Supports unlimited simultaneous connections
  • Robust security and privacy
  • 24/7 responsive chat support
  • Extensive server network in 100 countries
  • Has trouble with services like Hulu
  • Lacks a unique proprietary protocol
  • App can be overwhelming
  • Not the fastest among competitors
Surfshark

Streaming: Surfshark offers unlimited simultaneous connections, making it an excellent option for families or groups looking to stream Disney+ Hotstar’s regional Indian content on multiple devices without compromising on speed or quality.

Servers: Surfshark’s advantage for Disney+ Hotstar viewers lies in its ability to bypass geo-restrictions with its reliable Indian servers, ensuring seamless access to Disney+ Hotstar’s unique collection of regional Indian content across multiple devices.

Privacy: Surfshark emphasizes its commitment to privacy with successful DNS leak tests and independent security audits by Cure53, ensuring robust online security and privacy. You can find more about their security audits here.

Price: Surfshark offers a 1-month option costing $12.95/month, a 12-month option at $3.99/month, and a 24-month option at $2.49/month. It accepts major credit cards, PayPal, Google Pay, Amazon Pay, and various cryptocurrencies.

Speeds: Below is a table that gives you an idea of the speed performance when using Surfshark. From our tests, we observed decent speeds, suitable for general use, but not the fastest compared to some rivals.

Download Speeds (Mbps)Upload Speeds (Mbps)
No VPN (New Zealand)940.55520.24
Surfshark US server775.96.15
Surfshark UK server587.793.79

Read our full Surfshark review.

Special Offer for you!

(30-day money-back guarantee)

5. Private Internet Access

Affordable and secure VPN with wide device compatibility

  • Affordable pricing plans
  • Unlimited simultaneous devices
  • Extra features like ad blocker and email protection
  • Verified no-log policy
  • Compatible with streaming services like Netflix and Hulu
  • High use of virtual servers
  • Not as fast as top-tier VPNs
  • Lacks proprietary protocol options
PIA

Streaming: Private Internet Access (PIA) is well-suited for Disney+ Hotstar users, offering robust encryption and privacy features that ensure secure access to Disney+ Hotstar’s unique Indian entertainment content, even on public Wi-Fi networks.

Servers: Private Internet Access (PIA) stands out for Disney+ Hotstar streaming with its strong encryption and privacy-focused Indian servers, ensuring secure and private access to Disney+ Hotstar’s variety of Indian shows and movies.

Privacy: PIA’s app is open-source, inviting third-party scrutiny and verification. It has also passed an independent no-log policy audit conducted by Deloitte, affirming its commitment to privacy.

Price: PIA offers three subscription options: 1-month at $11.95/month, 1-year at $3.33/month (upfront cost $39.95), and 3-year at $2.03/month (upfront fee $79). Payment methods include credit cards, PayPal, cryptocurrencies, and Amazon payments.

Speeds: Speed tests for PIA showed significant drops in download speeds across various servers. While using WireGuard protocol, speeds were faster than OpenVPN but still slower compared to top-tier VPNs like ExpressVPN.

OpenVPN Download Speeds (Mbps)OpenVPN Upload Speeds (Mbps)WireGuard Download Speeds (Mbps)WireGuard Upload Speeds (Mbps)
VPN off (New Zealand)930516
PIA US server238.527.17300.658.65
PIA UK server2453.77315.787.23
PIA Vietnam server4456.554898.24

Read our full Private Internet Access review.

Special Offer for you!

(30-day money-back guarantee)

Disney+ Hotstar not working with VPN: FAQs

Q: Why is Disney+ Hotstar not working with my VPN?

Answer: Disney+ Hotstar may not work with your VPN if the service detects and blocks the VPN’s IP addresses. To resolve this, try switching to a different server provided by your VPN, preferably one that’s optimised for streaming services and less likely to be detected.

Q: Can I use a free VPN to stream on Disney+ Hotstar?

Answer: While some free VPNs might allow you to access Disney+ Hotstar, they often have limited servers and slower speeds, leading to poor streaming quality. It’s recommended to use a reputable paid VPN service that offers dedicated servers for streaming and better privacy features.

Q: How do I choose the best VPN for Disney+ Hotstar?

Answer: When selecting a VPN for Disney+ Hotstar, look for one with a strong presence of Indian servers, high-speed connections for streaming, and a track record of bypassing geo-restrictions effectively. Services like ExpressVPN, PureVPN, and Surfshark are often recommended for streaming.

Q: What do I do if Disney+ Hotstar keeps buffering with my VPN?

Answer: If Disney+ Hotstar is buffering, check your internet speed first. If speeds are adequate, try connecting to a different Indian server on your VPN, as this can often resolve speed and connectivity issues related to specific servers.

Q: Will using a VPN affect the video quality on Disney+ Hotstar?

Answer: Using a VPN shouldn’t significantly affect the video quality on Disney+ Hotstar as long as you choose a high-quality VPN with fast servers. In fact, a good VPN can prevent bandwidth throttling by ISPs, potentially improving your streaming experience.

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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