Hulu is one of the fastest-growing on-demand video streaming services around. Second only to Netflix, and with a growing live TV option, Hulu allows users to watch thousands of top-rated movies and TV show episodes, award-winning originals, and one of the largest selections of kids cartoons and anime of any service in the US.
But if you’re outside of the US, you’ll probably find that Hulu is blocked. However, you can get past those content blocks and unblock Hulu anywhere in the world using a few tips and tricks. Find out how to unblock Hulu anywhere in the world with this guide!
Using a VPN Will Unblock Hulu Anywhere
The best way to unblock Hulu is by using a proxy service that will spoof your location, making it appear as if you are currently in the United States while viewing your content.
For some time, many Netflix users were using SmartDNS services to do this. However, SmartDNS services no longer work effectively, are easily blocked, and offer no actual security features.
Instead, Netflix users have primarily switched to virtual private networks, or VPNs, that spoof your location while also making it difficult for streaming services to block your access.
Thankfully, VPNs work equally well with any type of streaming service, including Hulu. So while Netflix may have been the major reason many users turned to VPN services, VPNs work equally well to unblock Hulu anywhere in the world.
How do VPNs unblock Hulu?
When you connect to a VPN, your computer’s internet connection is routed through a private, encrypted “tunnel”.
On the other end, you’re connected to an internet server that assigns your computer a new IP address in whichever country that server is located. As a result, any website you connect to will only see the VPN server and not your original location.
For example, if you’re in the UK trying to access Hulu, connecting to a VPN server in the US will make it appear as if you are accessing websites and services from a computer or mobile device physically located in the US.
VPN services often utilize different methods to ensure you can effectively access content. They include encryption software that hides your activity from your ISP and from the sites you’re connecting to. Some even include various technological solutions to hide from filters that are designed to detect and block VPN connections.
The best VPN services also allow you to pay using anonymous payment methods and have no-logging policies so that they never record or hold onto your browsing history.
Additionally, any VPN service you’re using to unblock Hulu will need to have enough working servers in the US that you won’t have to worry about sharing the same server with too many people (an issue that causes speed slow-downs for users).
ExpressVPN can unblock Hulu
There are a large number of VPN services out there, many of which don’t work to unblock content. ExpressVPN is one that we’ve found that unblocks Hulu everywhere, and also meets some of the criteria we look for in trustworthy services.
Thankfully, ExpressVPN will let you pay anonymously, has a strict no-logs policy, and has a large number of servers available in the US. That means you can connect to Hulu from a long list of US locations and avoid bandwidth issues (slow loading and buffering) that may occur when too many people are connected to the same VPN server.
You can get ExpressVPN set up in just a few minutes, and as long as you already have a Hulu account, you can access the service in no time.
Read the full ExpressVPN review here.
Let’s walk through how to get started.
Unblock Hulu Anywhere with ExpressVPN: Setup Guide
As stated, it should only take you a few minutes to get started using ExpressVPN to unblock your Hulu account from overseas.
Step 1: Create your account
The first step is to choose your subscription package and create your account. ExpressVPN offers 3 subscription packages: 1 month, 6 months, or a yearlong subscription. If you only need a VPN service for a short term, the 1-month subscription option is probably a great option for you.
However, if you’re going to be outside of the US for a while, a yearlong subscription will be your go-to choice here. All of the subscription options come with a 30-day money-back guarantee, too.
Once you’ve picked a package, select your payment method and create your account. You can pay using any major credit card, or a long list of alternative payment systems, such as PayPal and even Bitcoin.
After you’ve successfully entered all of your information and submitted, ExpressVPN will send your account information and a link to login and download the software via email.
Step 2: Download the correct software
Once you have your account created and you’re logged in to your ExpressVPN account, you can download and install the VPN client.
ExpressVPN’s site will often automatically detect which computer operating system you’re using and feed you the correct link at the top of the page. However, if for some reason it gets your download file incorrect, you can click on “Set Up on More Devices” to locate the correct download file.
On this page, you’ll also see an activation code. You can copy it with a single click. You will need this code during the software installation process, so you may want to keep this webpage open while you run the install.
After clicking your correct download link, you will then need to locate your correct install file, click on it, and allow the installation process to proceed from there.
Step 3: Install ExpressVPN
Once you’ve located the install file and clicked it to run the installation program, everything is mostly automatic.
However, during the installation process, you will need to ensure you have the activation code. When prompted, copy and paste the activation code into the installation window. You will also need to ensure you have a working internet connection when you do this, as the software needs to connect to ExpressVPN’s server and identify your account and log you in.
The great thing about ExpressVPN here is that once the software has verified your account through the activation code, you never need to login on your computer using your password. ExpressVPN automatically logs you in every time you load your computer, and it can even be set to turn on and load up your VPN to a specific server if you want it to.
Step 4: Connect to a US server for the first time
Once you have your ExpressVPN software installed and running, you will see a windowed screen with a large power button in the center. At the bottom, there’s a “Smart Location” button and “Choose Location” button, as well as a hamburger-style “Settings” button on the top left.
As a first-time user, we suggest clicking on “Choose Location”. From there, either type in “United States”, or browse the list of available US-based servers.
You can either choose a server yourself or double-click “United States” to have ExpressVPN automatically choose the best server for you.
Once connected, the power button in the interface will glow green, showing a successful connection. You can also check to ensure you are actually connected to a US server by loading up ExpressVPN’s IP checking page, or going to Google and typing in “speedtest” and running an internet speed test. You’ll see both your internet speed through ExpressVPN and your server location using the speed test option.
You’re now all set, and ready to start accessing and unblocking US-based websites, including Hulu, Netflix, and more!
Is It Legal to Unblock Hulu with a VPN?
Absolutely! Streaming services like Hulu and Netflix employ geographic content blocking methods because the content providers that offer them TV shows and movies quite often require it. Content providers usually make more money off of their content by making services like Hulu pay different rates to provide access to shows and content in different countries.
In the case of Hulu, since it’s only available in the US, that means it currently doesn’t have any contracts to show its content outside of the US. Per its contracts, it’s likely required to block access from international streamers.
Bypassing the geographic content restrictions through a service like ExpressVPN is perfectly legal, and gives you access to content you are already paying to receive.
Additionally, in some countries, you may need to employ a proxy bypass like ExpressVPN because the government in your country blocks these services, due to the type of content provided.
China, for example, blocks most foreign content that may be critical to the government, including YouTube. Even then, it’s still legal to use a VPN, you just might have a more difficult time trying to find a way to download the software.
Hulu is Still Giving Me a Content Blocking Message. What Now?
There’s a chance that you might still get a content block from Hulu even if you’re connected to ExpressVPN. This is because of how ExpressVPN bypasses content blocks.
By using specific servers and regularly changing which servers it uses, the service helps avoid detection. However, when services like Hulu see a large number of people connecting in from the same IP address, they eventually block it.
If this is happening to you, simply contact ExpressVPN’s customer service and ask them which server you should be using. Their customer service live chat option available through the website is the best method to get into contact quickly.
All you need to do is give them the email address you used upon signup and the problem you’re having. They’ll be able to let you know which server you should be using to unblock Hulu.
I Can’t Sign Up For Hulu. What Now?
Hulu is currently only available to US customers. Unless you have a US-based credit card or payment account, you will not be able to sign up. Hulu does not ask for address information, but US-based payment methods are what it uses to verify location.
If you already have a Hulu account, you can still access the service, however, using your ExpressVPN account.
ExpressVPN Alternative: NordVPN
If for some reason ExpressVPN isn’t working out for you, you can do two things. First, avail yourself of the 30-day money-back guarantee that ExpressVPN offers. Then, sign up for an alternative VPN service that also works to unblock Hulu. For that, we recommend NordVPN.
NordVPN works well to unblock Hulu and has some of the benefits that we identified with ExpressVPN. There are numerous servers and server locations in the US to help avoid bandwidth and buffering issues. You’ll also find the same strict no-logs policy, VPN security features, and high-level encryption that make ExpressVPN our top pick.
What makes NordVPN a somewhat unique alternative, however, is the fact that this service has specialty servers that help bypass content restrictions. Through NordVPN, you can ensure your safety and anonymity on the web. NordVPN is the only service we’ve found with a specialty server listing that includes Anti-DDoS, Double VPN, Dedicated IP, Onion Over VPN, and P2P.
You can also get NordVPN for a far lower price than ExpressVPN. While both services have a similar month-to-month price (NordVPN is a dollar cheaper per month), NordVPN provides far heavier discounts on the annual subscription.
If you don’t want to use ExpressVPN, NordVPN is a great alternative. It can unblock Hulu anywhere in the world for a low price.
Read the full NordVPN review here.
Hulu + Live TV Schedule – What’s on Hulu + Live TV?
You don’t need to unblock Hulu + Live TV to take a peek under the hood. We’ve created a TV channel guide for Hulu + Live TV that lets you see what’s currently playing live on the Hulu’s available channels. That means you can see what’s playing on popular networks like ESPN, Fox Sports, HGTV, Discovery Channel, AMC and other networks, even without a Hulu + Live TV subscription.
Our multi-featured TV guide also offers customized grid options, future broadcast schedules, and color-coding for programming types.
Other Great Streaming Services
There’s a chance you can’t unblock Hulu or even a chance you may want to add other services to your line-up. To that end, you may want to consider other services in the Hulu family, to include Disney+ and ESPN+.
You’ll find Disney+ offers a wide selection of popular movies, TV shows, and must-see originals like The Mandalorian. For sports fans, ESPN+ is a great option to consider if you love live and on-demand sports that are hard to find elsewhere, including international soccer and UFC.
Sam Cook is a full-time content strategist by day, a part-time freelance content writer since 2015. In another life, he was a high school English teacher for nearly a decade. Based in sunny New Orleans, he writes long-form educational content on technology, including Insurtech, Fintech, HRtech, and content streaming. He loves whittling down complex ideas within these areas that make decisions easier for buyers. When he’s not reading books with his son Miles and playing video games with the family, you can find him immersed in his growing collection of Euro-style board games.