ExpressVPN is somewhat expensive compared to some other VPN products, but it’s a great all-around choice for a VPN. It has apps for just about every platform, full support for P2P file sharing services like BitTorrent, and a great, simplified user interface. But does ExpressVPN work with Hulu?
To find out, and to learn more about why you may need a VPN like ExpressVPN to access Hulu, read on! We’ll answer all of your questions in this comprehensive guide.
Does ExpressVPN Work With Hulu?
The short answer? Yes. ExpressVPN is among the VPN services that are still working to unlock digital content for subscribers who may be outside of the U.S. If you want to give the service a shot, you can sign up now and get three months of service free — and see if it’s right for you!
However, there is a catch — not every ExpressVPN server will work with Hulu all of the time.
Why is this the case? Because Hulu, like Netflix and other streaming content websites, is actively trying to block VPN users from accessing content abroad — even if they are U.S. residents and have a valid subscription.
Let’s go over the details about ExpressVPN and its features and pricing, so that you can figure out if this VPN service is right for you.
ExpressVPN has a number of great features that make it a top choice for watching Hulu. It has a total of over 1,500 VPN servers as well as 30+ different locations in the U.S. This means that you’ll always be able to find a server that works with Hulu.
You can also use your ExpressVPN login on up to 3 devices at once. Supported devices and operating systems that work with ExpressVPN include:
- Android and iOS phones and tables
- Google Chrome
ExpressVPN can also be set up on a router to provide an encrypted, secure connection for your entire home. However, this is a bit more difficult to set up.
ExpressVPN also has a no-logs policy, which you should look for from any VPN provider. A no-logs policy means that the company does not record any of your activity online, which prevents them from sharing it with ISPs or any other unauthorized third parties.
If you want, you can even buy your subscription with Bitcoin, which is nice if you’d prefer not to share your credit card details with the company.
ExpressVPN subscriptions and pricing
ExpressVPN is a bit on the pricey side when it comes providing VPN services. You can save money by purchasing a long-term subscription, though.
If you choose to purchase a month-to-month subscription, ExpressVPN will cost you $12.95 a month, making it one of the most expensive products on the market.
You can save a bit of money by purchasing a 6-month subscription for $9.99 per month. Or, if you can commit to a longer subscription, you can get a total of 15 months (12 months + 3 free months) for $6.67 per month.
You can definitely get a subscription to another VPN that unblocks Hulu for a lower price. However, given ExpressVPN’s great features and fantastic customer service, we’d still recommend it, even though it’s a bit on the expensive side.
Setting up ExpressVPN is very easy. First, head to this link once you’ve made your account. You’ll be redirected to a download page for the platform on which you’re using ExpressVPN, such as macOS, Linux, or Windows.
After you’ve downloaded and installed the program, you’ll be asked to sign in and use an activation code which was provided to you on the setup website. You don’t need to sign into the application itself — all you need to do is enter the activation code, which is quite convenient.
Then, you’ll be presented with the following screen:
All you have to do to get started is press the central “power” button. The VPN will choose the closest VPN server to you automatically. Alternatively, you can choose your own location using the “Choose Location” button.
This allows you to choose a specific server. The VPN list is organized by country, which makes it very easy to browse for the appropriate option. You can also search for a specific country or city, which makes it simple to find the right server for you. To make searching easier, ExpressVPN includes the save your favorite servers by clicking on the “star” icon, which will pin them to the top of your list.
Additionally, you have the option to modify how ExpressVPN works by clicking the “hamburger” menu in the top-left of the application.
You can conduct a speed test to find the fastest server near you, perform diagnostics, and modify preferences such as whether or not ExpressVPN launches on startup, or to check the connection protocol used to connect with your VPN.
All in all, setup is a total breeze and it’s easy for you to modify how ExpressVPN works.
Why can’t I access Hulu with ExpressVPN?
When a lot of users connect to Hulu from the same IP, Hulu may add it to a blacklist, which means ExpressVPN has to change the IP address of the server in order for users to re-connect.
If you can’t access Hulu with ExpressVPN, this is likely what happened. You can just contact ExpressVPN customer service and ask them which server you should use.
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Are There Any Alternatives To ExpressVPN?
Yes! If you’re thinking about getting a VPN subscription, but you’re not a fan of ExpressVPN or you think it’s a bit too pricey, there are several alternatives that are definitely worth looking into. Here’s a brief overview of two of them: VyprVPN and StrongVPN.
VyprVPN is a newer VPN service, but it has quickly become popular with U.S. expats and other people who are looking to access Hulu from outside of the United States. The reason? VyprVPN offers a proprietary “Chameleon” obfuscation service that prevents Netflix and Hulu from recognizing VPN traffic.
If you purchase a VyprVPN Premium subscription, you’ll get access to this service, as well as an increased number of simultaneous connections and some other benefits. Essentially, it scrambles the “metadata” of your connection, making it hard for services like Hulu to understand the location from which you’re connecting and other details about your connection.
By doing this, VyprVPN is able to fool Hulu into thinking you’re in America with 100% reliability. That means you’ll always be able to watch your favorite shows without worrying about server downtime.
VyprVPN also has apps available for most mobile devices, laptops, and more, as well as 700 total servers in 70 countries, and a slick UI that makes it easy to connect to your favorite servers.
It’s also quite a bit cheaper than ExpressVPN, unless you get VyprVPN Premium. You’ll pay $5.00 month if you purchase an annual subscription, or $9.95/month for a monthly subscription. Note that in order to get the must-have Chameleon technology VyprVPN employs, you will need to sign up to VyprVPN Premium.
The price of VyprVPN Premium is identical to ExpressVPN. It’ll cost you $12.95/month if you choose a monthly subscription, or $6.67 per month for a year-long commitment.
If you’re not sure about this service, you can try it out with a free 3-day trial. This may be a bit restrictive, but it should give you enough time to determine if VyprVPN is a good alternative to ExpressVPN.
StrongVPN is a pretty good alternative to ExpressVPN, particularly for users who are accessing Hulu from behind the Great Firewall of China. With plenty of features and servers, as well as top-notch security and encryption, it’s quite popular with VPN users.
StrongVPN subscriptions come with an obfuscation service that allows users to access streaming content from Hulu and other geo-locked services. The company is also dedicated to protecting its users — they no longer support the outdated PPTP protocol, and use only encrypted connections like SSTP, L2TP, and IPsec. You can choose the connection type you like the most, or let StrongVPN choose for you.
StrongVPN has good performance, but it does not have quite as many servers as the competition. You get a total of about 650 servers, located in 26 countries and 46 cities around the world, which is fewer than both VyprVPN and ExpressVPN.
However, the price is much better. If you’re on a budget, StrongVPN is likely to be on the top of your list. It costs $9.99/month for a monthly subscription, which is pretty standard, but you can save quite a bit if you pay for a full year upfront. You’ll pay $69.99, which is $5.83 per month.
Naturally, StrongVPN also does not keep user logs, so you can be sure that your activity is safe and protected from ISPs and any other agencies who may want to observe your online activities.
StrongVPN does have some speed issues on occasion, so you may want to run speed tests when you’re using it to ensure that your chosen connection is speedy enough to stream Hulu content.
Overall, StrongVPN is a great alternative to ExpressVPN, and it offers an easy setup, minimalist user interface, and intuitive design that make it a top pick for watching Hulu abroad.
Why Does Hulu Block International Users?
Unlike Netflix and some other services like Amazon Prime Video, Hulu exclusively serves United States residents. If you live in Canada, the UK, or anywhere else in the world, you simply cannot get a Hulu subscription.
This is mostly due to arcane and difficult-to-understand laws and regulations regarding cable networks, and the difficulty of licensing this content internationally. So, because Hulu is only available in the United States, it does make sense that they would block foreign IP addresses from signing up for the website or viewing content.
But this has a side-effect. If you are a U.S. citizen abroad, and you have a Hulu subscription, you won’t be able to use it.
How Can a VPN Help Me Access Blocked Content?
VPN stands for “Virtual Protected Network”. A VPN essentially encrypts all of your web traffic, and “tunnels” it to a third party server that is located in a different country. This means that you could connect to a server in the U.S., and websites like Hulu would think that you are connecting from a legitimate U.S. internet connection — even when you are abroad.
If you’re outside of the U.S. and you want to access the full library of Hulu’s digital content, you’re going to need to use a VPN.
While Smart DNS services like Unlocator used to be popular, services like Netflix and Hulu have cracked down on DNS “spoofing”. These services are no longer a good way to watch Hulu or Netflix abroad.
However, ExpressVPN works with Hulu, as well as other geo-locked websites such as the BBC iPlayer and Netflix. Using ExpressVPN, you can easily make it appear like you’re in the U.S. or elsewhere in the world — and have full access to Hulu’s library of content!
Can Hulu Tell That I’m Using a VPN?
Unfortunately, yes. Hulu has caught on to the fact that many people abroad may be using a VPN to access their services, so they have taken measures to stop non-U.S. residents from accessing Hulu.
By using Deep Packet Inspection (DPI) technology, and comparing your IP address to lists of known VPN servers, Hulu can often tell that you’re using a VPN, and you may not be able to access the website.
Basically, all they have to do is track the areas from which users are connecting. Then, if they find out that a large number of users are connecting from the same VPN IP address, they can blacklist the server, and users will be unable to connect.
Essentially, this means that VPNs like ExpressVPN are caught in a game of “cat and mouse” with Hulu. When too many people try to access Hulu on a particular server it may become blocked. Then, ExpressVPN will have to change the IP address to allow access again. This is why, sometimes, an ExpressVPN server or another VPN server won’t work with Hulu.