Online gambling has surged in popularity in recent years, particularly in Europe and the U.K., where there are now hundreds of online providers available for customers to choose from.
There’s everything from casino sites, with traditional table games and video slots, to sports betting websites, which let punters place bets on every sport imaginable. However, there can be problems in accessing these sites from certain locations.
This can be due to local laws, local cultural or religious beliefs that don’t approve of gambling, or the simple fact that the betting operator does not find it viable to operate their services in the local market.
If you often travel abroad for work or vacation, it’s likely that at some point you’ll end up somewhere where your usual gambling sites are blocked, and you won’t be able to access them and place bets online.
In this article, I will discuss a workaround that many internet users turn to this scenario in order to access geo-blocked websites via a VPN (Virtual Private Network).
A VPN unblocks content by connecting you to a server in another location and routing your traffic through that server, making it appear as though you are located in the country where the website content is not restricted, therefore unblocking it from anywhere.
Not all VPNs are great at unblocking restricted content, though. In this article, I’ll show you the best VPNs to use for gambling abroad.
Disclaimer: It’s important to thoroughly research your country or state laws before using a VPN to bet online. The laws on online gambling are extremely complex and vary significantly in each country or state. Pixel Privacy does not encourage or condone illegal online gambling, nor the use of a VPN to spoof geographic locations for the purpose of breaking local laws.
How to Gamble Abroad With a VPN
Here’s a simple step-by-step guide on how you can access geo-blocked gambling websites with a VPN.
- Choose a VPN with a good number of server locations and a strong record of unblocking restricted content. I’ve selected ExpressVPN as the best VPN for unblocking restricted gambling and gaming websites.
- Install the VPN app designed for your device’s operating system. Leading VPNs like ExpressVPN and many others come with easy-to-use apps. Download and install the app for your device from your VPN provider’s website.
- Log into your VPN app and choose to connect to a server located in the same country as the service that you want to use. For example, many British Betfair users on vacation from the U.K. connect to a U.K. server so they appear to be in the U.K., allowing them to access content.
- Once connected to the correct VPN server, you can load the betting website of your choice and use it as you would at home.
Best VPNs for Gambling Abroad
If you’re in a hurry and just want the best options, here’s a summary of my top 5 VPNs for gambling abroad:
- ExpressVPN: My top choice for unblocking restricted websites, such as gambling websites, thanks to its large and fast server network. ExpressVPN can also help keep your identity and browsing activity completely private.
- NordVPN: A budget-friendly VPN capable of unblocking many kinds of censored content, including gambling sites that are restricted due to geo-locking. It also offers decent server speeds and some robust security features.
- CyberGhost: One of the fastest VPNs available, with a large number of servers that can unblock restricted content, such as gambling websites. I like that CyberGhost uses top-level encryption standards and keeps no logs.
- Surfshark: This VPN is a good choice for gamers and those looking to gamble online overseas thanks to its very fast speeds and reasonably large server network, which covers 50 countries. Privacy and security features also score highly.
- PrivateVPN: There’s only around 150 servers available in this provider’s network, but they are strategically located to cover 60 countries and are capable of unblocking a wide range of content, including gambling websites, from abroad.
In order to rank the VPNs, I created the following list of criteria:
- Servers in multiple countries
- Good content-unblocking capabilities
- Good security
- Excellent privacy features
- Provides a range of apps
By looking at the above requirements, I was able to create a strong list of VPNs. Here are my top 5 VPNs for gambling abroad.
ExpressVPN is great at unblocking geo-restricted content, and this includes news websites, video streams and gambling-related websites.
With one of the largest server networks around (currently standing at over 3,000 servers in 94 countries), users get a superb level of choice in what country they connect to. This is ideal for travelers abroad looking to connect to restricted websites, such as their usual gambling sites, like Betfair or bet365.
This provider is one of the strongest at unblocking restricted content. In addition to gambling websites, it’s capable of unblocking major streaming services like Amazon Prime, Netflix, BBC iPlayer and others.
Speeds are fast, which makes this VPN great for streaming content and for general web use, including placing online bets.
ExpressVPN helps keep all your data very secure with military-grade encryption, so hackers will not be able to break in and steal your details. There’s also an internet kill switch available on desktop versions.
Online anonymity is also important to many VPN users, and ExpressVPN has a number of tools to help achieve this. No traffic logs are kept, and IP and DNS leak protection prevent any information from leaking outside of the VPN connection.
Straightforward apps for the major platforms, including Mac, Windows, iOS and Android, make ExpressVPN easy to install and use on almost any device.
- Large server network
- Capable of unblocking geo-restricted gambling websites
- Fast speeds
- Highest possible encryption standards
- No logs
- A little more expensive than some other options
BEST VPN FOR GAMBLING ABROAD:ExpressVPN delivers a large, reliable network with excellent security and privacy features. Fast speeds are great for placing bets and streaming the live video available on some sports betting sites. A 30-day money-back guarantee means you can try it risk-free.
Read our full review of ExpressVPN.
For users looking for a VPN that can deliver results at a reasonable price point, then NordVPN will most likely fit the bill very well.
This provider has a vast network of over 5,200 servers in 60 countries, making it capable of unblocking lots of geo-restricted content while you’re abroad, including gambling websites and top content streaming websites, such as Netflix.
NordVPN has fast speeds, and there’s no lag when using websites online, so placing time-sensitive bets on live sports will not be an issue.
Your online activity will not be tracked or traced, and your financial details will be secure when making deposits. NordVPN uses top-level encryption, with 256-bit AES used as standard. There’s also a no-logs policy to ensure no details are stored or shared.
Apps are available to download for iOS, Android, Mac and Windows.
- A great budget provider
- Very large server network
- Unblocks restricted content
- Good security features
- iOS app doesn’t work in China
BEST BUDGET VPN:NordVPN has a vast (and fast) server network, giving users more choice, and at a reasonable price point. There’s good content-unblocking ability, including access to gambling websites. Security is also very strong, giving users peace of mind. 30-day money-back guarantee.
Read our full review of NordVPN.
CyberGhost is a good option for unblocking a large number of geo-restricted websites because of its large and growing server network. At the time of writing, the service offers more than 3,700 servers.
For those looking to gamble online while abroad, you’ll be able to access your normal betting websites, because CyberGhost has servers based in 60 countries around the world.
With rapid VPN connections, CyberGhost is also great for placing bets quickly and without any interruptions. This can be important if you’re looking to bet in-play and need to confirm a bet before the game or score changes.
CyberGhost works with military-grade encryption. This is currently unbreakable, giving your data protection from hackers as it moves from your device and through the VPN server.
It’s also important that what you access online is kept private, and CyberGhost boosts your online privacy by using a number of tools that hide your activity – even from your ISP. These tools include an internet kill switch, as well as DNS and IP leak protection.
CyberGhost follows a no-logs policy, so no user data is ever recorded or stored. It also allows Bitcoin as payment for its services.
There are apps available to download for iOS, Android, Mac and Windows devices.
- Very fast speeds
- Over 3,000 servers
- Kill switch on all platforms
- Keeps no logs
- Doesn’t work reliably in China
GREAT VALUE:CyberGhost provides access to a number of geo-restricted websites, including gambling sites and TV streaming services. Features like a kill switch on all platforms and a no-logs policy help provide excellent privacy. 45-day money-back guarantee.
Read our full review of CyberGhost.
Surfshark has around 500 servers at the time of writing, and they are well distributed across 50 countries to ensure users have access to a wide range of content, including gambling websites and streaming services.
Surfshark also offers very fast speeds, making it ideal for internet users overseas looking to log into gambling websites and place bets without any lag or difficulty loading pages, or even for streaming sports TV, so they can watch the games they’re betting on.
Surfshark records no traffic or metadata logs, so your online activity is not accessible to anyone, including surveillance or monitoring agencies. This service also uses high-level encryption alongside a kill switch and IP and DNS leak protection.
There are apps available to download for iOS, Android, Windows and Mac.
- Provides a secure, encrypted connection
- Servers located in 50 countries
- Very fast server speeds
- Not as many servers as rivals
- Unblocking Hulu streams can be hit or miss
UNLIMITED CONNECTIONS:Surfshark offers an unlimited number of connections, making it a great choice for users with multiple devices or for those looking to share the VPN with friends or family. Surfshark does offer a small VPN network, but it’s very fast and can unblock most streaming services. 30-day money-back guarantee.
Read our full review of Surfshark.
PrivateVPN offers very strong performance when it comes to unblocking geo-restricted content, and it works well with gambling sites and the top TV streaming services, like Netflix and BBC iPlayer.
This VPN has a relatively small network of 150 servers, which is fewer than some larger providers, but its servers are located in more than 60 countries around the world, making it very good at unblocking content across the globe.
PrivateVPN also has some of the fastest VPN speeds around, and that ensures that it performs well for streaming, general web use and placing in-play bets.
You’ll get military-grade 256-bit AES encryption for all your web traffic sent through the VPN, and this means PrivateVPN scores highly for security and privacy.
The high level of encryption is backed up with IP and DNS leak protection, plus a kill switch for the Windows version. This all means it’s virtually impossible for anyone to hack into your personal information.
PrivateVPN records no traffic logs and no metadata, so user privacy is always maintained when using this VPN service.
PrivateVPN gives users easy-to-use apps for iOS, Android, Mac and Windows.
- Excellent connection speeds
- Kill switch on Windows
- Keeps no logs whatsoever
- Live chat is not available 24/7
- Small number of servers
GREAT SPEEDS:PrivateVPN is a good choice for gambling abroad or unblocking other restricted content online. Very fast speeds and good security features help to keep your personal details secure at all times. 30-day money-back guarantee.
Read our full review of PrivateVPN.
Can I Use a Free VPN to Access Betting Websites Abroad?
When you’re searching for a VPN provider, beware of what free VPNs claim they can do.
It’s unlikely that any free VPN can deliver the same level of security, privacy and speed that’s available from a top paid VPN.
Many “free” VPN providers look for alternative ways of making money from users. Methods include tracking your activity and selling the data to advertisers, or even carrying malware, which can pose a big risk to your online security.
Despite this, free VPNs still simply do not have the resources to match the best VPNs on the market.
They often provide a very limited server network, which can often become slow and overloaded with users. You’re given less choice in which location you can connect to, and this can be prohibitive if you’re looking to connect to a betting website in a location the free VPN does not cover.
The best paid VPNs for gambling abroad, however, can cover more than 50 countries around the world, giving users excellent choice in the locations they connect to, while simultaneously securing your connections and assuring your privacy.
Staying Within the Law When Accessing Betting Websites
The laws around online gambling are complex and vary greatly between countries.
For example, in the UAE, all forms of gambling, including online betting, are banned, while in Singapore, only two approved online betting providers are allowed to operate thanks to exemption from the local government.
In other countries, there are no formal laws at all concerning online gambling, creating a legal gray area – but this does not automatically mean it’s okay to place bets from one of these nations.
Alongside these local laws that governments enforce, you also need to be aware that betting companies themselves often have rules against accessing their services from certain regions. This is usually due to the fact that they need to be legally authorized and approved by local authorities to operate in some countries.
In order to stay on the right side of the law in these circumstances, it’s advisable to check both the local laws where you are and the rules on your preferred betting website.
It’s critical to do this before you deposit money and place your bets, because you could risk having your wagers voided, or even worse, having your funds – including deposits and winnings – confiscated.
Because of the complexity and variance in small print from provider to provider, I would always recommend contacting the betting operator directly as the fastest and most accurate way to find out and confirm if you are allowed to place bets with them from your current location.
Most major online gambling sites have 24/7 live chat, so finding an answer to your query should be fast and painless.
NOTE: I would also repeat here that Pixel Privacy does not condone using a VPN to access betting services and place bets illegally. Users must confirm the legality of placing bets from their current location with their preferred betting operator.
It’s clear that the laws on online gambling vary widely from country to country, and that the terms and conditions are different for each gambling operator.
However, for users who contact their betting operator and find out that bets are allowed to be placed from their current location, a VPN is an easy way to unblock the geo-restrictions on the website and access their service of choice.
I recommend ExpressVPN as my top VPN for gambling abroad, as it unblocks geo-restricted content, including gambling sites and streaming services, and also offers fast speeds and tight security.
For more information or to purchase a subscription, visit the ExpressVPN website.