So, you want to watch American Netflix in Canada, eh? Yeah, I guess it’s pretty annoying knowing that Netflixians across the border get access to different TV shows and movies. Shows such as American Horror Story and It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia — to name just a couple — aren’t available on Canadian Netflix. It all boils down to copyright and licensing restrictions, and Netflix geoblocks its content so it doesn’t breach those agreements. For you and me, though, that just means we get the short straw on some streaming opportunities.
Fear not, my fellow Netflix ninjas! If you want to learn how to get American Netflix in Canada, we have the answer: a good VPN can help you sneak in the side entrance of Netflix U.S. while the guards block the front door to Canadian IPs.
But it has to be a good VPN to get past the Netflix proxy error, and my favorite VPN service, ExpressVPN, is the best for the job. It’ll get you into Netflix U.S. without issue, and your streaming experience will be great. In this article, I’ll show you how to get American Netflix in Canada.
How to Get American Netflix in Canada in 3 Easy Steps
It’s easy to access American Netflix from the Great White North, and I’ll show you exactly how to do that using ExpressVPN as an example.
1. Download and install ExpressVPN
Download and install the ExpressVPN desktop app or mobile device app. Open the app and log in.
2. Connect to a server in the U.S.
Find an American server and connect to it.
3. Go to the Netflix website and log in to your account
Log in to your Netflix account as usual. If the VPN server is suitable, you should notice that you’re viewing the U.S. Netflix library. If not, choose a different U.S. VPN server and try again.
Why Can’t I Watch American Netflix in Canada?
Technically, it’s not just Canada that can’t access American Netflix. Netflix is available in more than 190 countries, and each of those countries has its own library.
Sure, some of the content within the libraries is the same but, as I said before, Netflix doesn’t have the rights to air some TV series and movies in all of those countries. When Netflix signs a contract for content, that contract will specify exactly where Netflix can stream it. If Netflix falls out of line, it could get a nice knock on the door from the industry’s lawyers.
Plus, each Netflix library can contain content that suits the local culture or language. Wherever you’re located, Netflix will show you the content for that region. But that’s why using VPN software is so special. It can literally make you look like you’re somewhere else. Heck, you could sit on your Canadian chesterfield (couch for all you Americans) and fool Netflix into thinking you’re in India.
It’s all down to your IP address. That thing basically acts like a mailing address for your device, and it’s how Netflix detects what region you’re in. By using a VPN, your true IP address is masked with a new one, from whatever region you pick. Providing you use a decent VPN, Netflix won’t be able to tell that you’ve snuck your way in.
One thing to note: it’s not illegal to change your IP address and access another country’s Netflix library, but it does go against Netflix’s terms of service. Netflix could terminate your account, knowing that you have a Canadian Netflix account. But the likelihood of that is slim, and lots of people do it.
What’s on American Netflix That’s Not in Canada?
There’s conflicting information online about the total number of titles in each Netflix library. Some websites show that the U.S. Netflix library has a couple of thousand more titles than Canadian Netflix, and other data shows that Canada has crept past the U.S.’s total. Plus, it’s said that the U.S. library has more variety, but Canada’s library has more higher-rated movies.
Either way, it’s likely that there’s at least one thing you actually want to watch that isn’t available where you are. But that’s OK, you just need to take your TV on a VPN vacation and connect to an American server. Then you can access TV shows and movies on Netflix U.S., such as:
- It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia
- American Horror Story
- Radium Girls
- Ink Master
- Stargate SG-1
- The Twilight Zone
- The Great British Bake Off (The Great British Baking Show)
- Scott Pilgrim vs. the World
- The Blair Witch Project
- A Clockwork Orange
- What’s Eating Gilbert Grape
Those are just some of the titles you’ll be able to watch on Netflix U.S. Some may be available in other countries, too, but Canadians are still missing out on them.
What Makes a VPN Good for Watching U.S. Netflix in Canada?
There are lots of virtual private network services available, but not all of them are good enough to use with Netflix. Aside from being able to access Netflix without a streaming error, there are other important factors that make up a good VPN service. In this section, I’ll outline the main features needed for a Netflix-capable VPN, as well as three VPN services that have those features.
Large Selection of Server Locations
Having a larger number of servers to choose from is important, as you’ll have more chances of finding one that can unblock Netflix. Plus, to access American Netflix, you need to make sure the VPN has servers in the U.S. — and the more the better.
Fast and Reliable Service
Make sure you choose a VPN that has fast and reliable speeds. By doing that, you’ll have no problem streaming whatever you like, without interruption. I mean, I’m sure you didn’t plan on watching a buffering or loading screen, right?
No Data Caps
It’s best to select a VPN with unlimited bandwidth and no data caps so you can watch and download as much as you like, as fast as you want.
Strong Encryption and Additional Security Features
Ensure that the VPN client comes with strong encryption — 256-bit encryption is recommended. Other security features, such as a kill switch, are good to have, too. But the main point is having strong security behind you so that you’re protected from hackers and other online dangers at all times.
Strict No-logs Policy
Privacy is a little different from security, and the VPN should have a no-logs policy. That means the VPN doesn’t record your online activities. Everything you do online is kept secret and your personal information is protected.
Best VPNs to Watch U.S. Netflix in Canada
Now that you know what features are needed in a Netflix VPN, here are my top three VPN providers for unblocking American Netflix in Canada.
- Easy to use
- Servers in 94 countries
- Great support
- High security level
My top VPN for unblocking Netflix is ExpressVPN. It can unblock Netflix without a hitch and comes with the fast and reliable speeds that you need for streaming it. Its server network isn’t quite as large as NordVPN’s, but it still has lots of U.S. servers available in more than 10 states. There’s no bandwidth limit, too, so you can stream as much as you like.
ExpressVPN also has great security and privacy, but its high cost makes it less favorable in my wallet’s eyes; ExpressVPN knows it’s the best and charges accordingly. The monthly plan costs only a little more than NordVPN. The longest plan with ExpressVPN is 12 months, and it comes at almost twice the cost of NordVPN’s 12-month plan. It is an incredibly reliable and safe VPN, though, and if you want to give it a whirl, you’ll be covered by a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Check out ExpressVPN’s pricing here.
- Easy to operate
- Additional safety functions
- Cheap long-term subscriptions
- Fast support via live chat
- Doesn't keep logs
- Can't test without payment data
Another favorite VPN provider of mine is NordVPN, and since it has more than 1,900 U.S. servers, you should have no problem finding a suitable one to watch U.S. Netflix — or any other streaming services.
It’s super easy to use, and switching servers is a doddle with NordVPN’s map-style interface. There are no bandwidth caps to worry about and its connection speeds are fast and reliable so you don’t have to worry about buffering issues.
NordVPN also has some of the best security available, with 256-bit, double-hop encryption — which basically means your internet connection is encrypted twice over — and a kill switch. There’s also a strict no-logging policy to ensure your privacy. NordVPN’s monthly cost is pretty high, but you can save a significant amount by opting for the two-year plan. There’s a 30-day refund period, too, so you can make sure you like it.
Check out NordVPN’s pricing here.
- Very good price-performance ratio
- High security level
- Unlimited simultaneous connections
- Great support with live chat
- No information on individual servers
- Can have issues establishing a connection
My last recommendation is Surfshark. It’s not quite as good as my first two picks, but it’s still a decent VPN and it has the chops to get into Netflix — though you may need to switch servers a few times to find a suitable one. That shouldn’t be an issue, though, because Surfshark has more than 500 VPN servers in over 20 U.S. cities.
It has great security and privacy. Plus, there are no data caps and you can connect as many devices as you like — what better way to express your love for the household than letting them access U.S. Netflix, too? Seriously, though, that means you could be watching a show on the TV while others tune in on an Android or iOS device.
On top of that, Surfshark has decent speeds, though it can’t quite keep up with ExpressVPN and NordVPN. Still, Surfshark is a decent choice for a Netflix VPN and it might suit you better if you’re a little low on funds because it’s the cheapest of the three VPN providers. There’s a 30-day money-back guarantee, too.
Check out Surfshark’s pricing here.
Can I Use a Free VPN to Get American Netflix in Canada?
Although there are lots of free VPN services available, you should know that it’s not always a good idea to use them. Some free VPN providers are a disguise for malicious software or a data vacuum, so instead of protecting you, they do the complete opposite.
Even if you find a secure free VPN, though, they’re not great at unblocking Netflix. With a free VPN, you’re often held back by data caps, slow speeds and limited server options, meaning you end up with a crappy streaming experience.
However, if you can’t bear to part with your moolah — or are lacking it — I recommend using Windscribe. It’s a reputable VPN provider with a free limited plan available. Sure, you’ll only have access to a handful of servers and be bound by its 10GB data cap, but it’s better than nothing, right?
Remember, though, if you want to try a decent Netflix VPN to the fullest, both ExpressVPN and NordVPN have a 30-day money-back guarantee.
You can’t just sit there knowing that Netflix U.S. has different titles to Netflix Canada — the audacity. Thankfully, you can watch American Netflix in Canada by getting out your virtual torch and pitchfork, er, I mean by using a decent VPN. By decent, we mean one that has fast speeds, unlimited bandwidth, good security and privacy, and plenty of servers in the U.S.
ExpressVPN is my go-to VPN. It has all the features mentioned above and can unblock Netflix — as well as any other streaming service — with no problem. Why not give it a try? If you don’t like it, just ask for a refund within 30 days.
Have you used a VPN to get American Netflix? What do you think about the difference in Netflix libraries’ content? Let me know your thoughts in the comment section. Thank you for reading.