Nothing feels better at the end of a busy day of travel than digging myself into a mountain of hotel pillows, slice of pizza in hand, backup slice of pizza in the other hand, with the soothing sounds of X-Files blaring at me like a siren’s song. But alas! If you’ve travelled abroad and tried tuning into streaming services like Netflix and Hulu, then you’ll know the struggle. Certain favorite titles of mine are not available outside of the United States. What’s a guy to do? These media companies can detect where in the world you are by your IP address. Lucky for you, you don’t have to say ciao to your favorite streamable shows – even if they are only available in your country of origin!
All you need to do is download a VPN (virtual private network). They’re useful for a variety of reasons (mainly regarding cyber security), and it works by connecting you to a server somewhere else in the world. Why is this helpful? A VPN keeps your location anonymous. By turning on your VPN, your IP address will instead be traced to somewhere else in the world, so while you’re sitting at home fiddling on Facebook in Chicago, the Internet might think you’re in Amsterdam. Most people use it for anonymity, but you can simply configure your VPN settings so that your streaming sites think you’re right at home (and not halfway around the world).
Here’s how you do it:
- Download a VPN (my personal favorite is www.hide.me)
- Set the server location to the country of your choice
- Activate the network
Et voila! Works like a charm every time. Even when I’m oceans away, I can turn on my VPN, trick the internet into thinking I’m still back in the United States, and streams hours and hours of mind-melting entertainment as long as my heart desires.