It’s no secret that the US has the biggest and best Netflix library – New Zealand, on the other hand, has one of the worst. In this article, I’ll explain how to get American Netflix in NZ.
See also: How to watch BBC iPlayer in New Zealand.
How to watch American Netflix in NZ: Quick guide
- Sign up to NordVPN ($3.49/month) (with 30-day money-back guarantee) or Ivacy – $2.25/month
- Download the NordVPN or Ivacy app on your device
- Connect to a server in the US
- Open Netflix
- Watch American Netflix
It’s as simple as that.
How to watch American Netflix in NZ?
The first thing you need to know about Netflix is that it always servers its users a local library. For example, if a US Netflix customer went to Mexico on holiday and logged into Netflix there – they’d be served the Mexican Netflix library, despite having an American Netflix account.
How does Netflix know which country its users are in? Easy. It looks up the IP address of all the inbound connections to know which (local) library to serve.
Note: IP addresses are a little bit like physical addresses – they can be used to detect the location of an internet connection to specific towns and cities throughout the world.
So if you want to access American Netflix from New Zealand, all you need to do is spoof your IP address (to an American one).
The best way to do this is to use a VPN (see below) as they provide a secure way to spoof your IP address to any country in the world. Meaning you access hundreds of other country’s Netflix libraries too.
However, be careful when you’re choosing a VPN – Netflix has started blocking connections that it detects as coming from VPN servers. I suggest using either NordVPN ($3.49/month) or Ivacy ($1.99/month) as both of these providers consistently unblock Netflix US for me for the past two years.
If you want to learn more about Netflix vs VPNs, take a look at my Netflix Detecting VPN? There’s an EASY workaround! article.
Why is the American Netflix library bigger than NZ’s?
Netflix only produces a fraction of the content you see in your library. Tiger King, Making a Murderer, Stranger Things – anything with the Netflix Logo in the library – these are all Netflix Originals. Meaning they are available to Netflix users throughout the world.
However, TV shows and Films like Friends, Breaking Bad, Homeland, Shawshank Redemption and Lord of the Rings have to be licenced.
Licencing this content to each individual library costs Netflix money. America has a bigger Netflix library than New Zealand for the simple reason it has more Netflix users. More customers mean more buying power, which means bigger libraries.
How to get American Netflix in NZ for free (2020)
You can’t. There are some VPNs like Windscribe and Tunnelbear that offer free tiers. However, the servers they offer on this tier are oversubscribed and already blocked by Netflix (see above). They also have small data caps that won’t be enough to even get you through one show on Netflix.
Best VPN to get American Netflix in NZ?
If you’re looking for a VPN that works with Netflix 100% of the time, we suggest choosing one of the three listed below. NordVPN, Ivacy and ExpressVPN all open new servers and IP as soon as their older ones are blacklisted. This ensures that they offer their customers a way to watch American Netflix all of the time.
From our tests, we’ve found NordVPN ($3.49/month) (with 30-day money-back guarantee) to be the fastest provider. It also has the most servers open to US Netflix.
Ivacy comes a close second regarding the number of US servers it makes available to its customer base. However, because Ivacy is cheaper than NordVPN, its servers are often more crowded. Which makes them slower. The final VPN we recommend is NordVPN. Nord is slightly more guarded about how many open servers it has with US Netflix, due to how its app is set up to manage connections. NordVPN still performed well in all of our tests and provided a solid connection to Netflix with zero downtime.
NordVPN is the best VPN for unblocking US Netflix. It has 1883+ servers and a dedicated technical team that monitors each connection (with US Netflix).
In the unlikely scenario where you’re unable to find a server that works with US Netflix, don’t panic. Just head to the Netflix Support page to find a list of servers that are “open” and verified by Nord’s dedicated tech team.
The NordVPN app is available for Windows, Mac, Android, iOS and Linux (plus a Chrome extension).
If you’re looking for an excellent VPN, with an even better price tag, Ivacy ($2.25/month) is a great option.
This VPN has all the features you need to stream US Netflix, in HD, from any country in the world. I’ve been testing the app recently on Mac, PC, Android, iOS and FireStick and the results have been impressive – unlocking US Netflix with ease.
For an extra $1.99/month you can add-on a dedicated IP. This will buy you sole access to an IP address in a country of your choice, meaning you won’t have to share your IP (and speeds) with any other use.
ExpressVPN is another great option for unblocking US Netflix. It’s also one of the more expensive. But you’re paying for a quality service. Using ExpressVPN guarantees you’ll always have a working connection with American Netflix (and BBC iPlayer in the UK).
Finding a server that is open to US Netflix is easy. Most of the time, all you need to do is navigate your way to the Recommended servers list in the ExpressVPN app and you’ll be able to watch Netflix without any issues. If this doesn’t work, for whatever reason, users are encouraged to speak to a support agent via the ExpressVPN website’s 24/7 Live Chat. Here users can speak to an ExpressVPN representative and literally ask which servers are currently working with Netflix.
ExpressVPN has a dedicated app for Windows, Mac, Linux, Android, iPhone, iPad, Amazon Firestick, Apple TV, PS4 and Xbox. There are also browser extensions for Chrome, Firefox and Safari.
List of VPNs blocked by Netflix
- Hotspot Shield
Read next: How to watch UK TV in New Zealand.