YouTube Blocked

Unblock YouTube Videos with a VPN

Last edited: June 4, 2020
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Summary: How To Unblock Videos on YouTube

Can’t watch a video because of a YouTube block? Your video might be blocked due to copyright restrictions or censorship. You can still access these videos with a VPN connection. This is very easy:

  1. Subscribe to the VPN provider of your choice. You might choose one of the excellent VPN providers from our top 5 or check out our recommendation below.
  2. Download the VPN software from your VPN provider’s official website.
  3. Log in with your account.
  4. Select a server in a country of your choice and enable the VPN.

You’ll now be able to access the internet as if you were in the country of your chosen server. By selecting servers in locations that do have access to your blocked video, you can easily watch that video.

For unblocking YouTube videos we recommend the fast and secure provider NordVPN:

Want to know more about lifting Youtube blocks? Read the rest of this article below for more information.

If you spend a lot of time on YouTube, the following message might look familiar: “This video is not available in your country”. Not all videos on YouTube are available worldwide. Often, this is due to censorship or copyright. Both governments and collecting societies can make YouTube, or certain content on YouTube, inaccessible. Here’s an example of what that may look like:

video not available youtube

Fortunately, there’s an easy way to watch blocked YouTube videos. These clips might seem inaccessible, but this often isn’t the case. This article will explain how you can get around these online restrictions with a VPN.

Why Are YouTube Videos Being Blocked?

There are several reasons why you might not be able to watch a particular video on YouTube. Here are a couple of possible explanations:

  • Your network settings prevent you from accessing YouTube. This often happens when you use your job’s network. Your boss might have blocked YouTube, or certain content on the platform, to improve productivity.
  • There is a technical problem with the video.
  • Due to restrictions on broadcasting rights, the video isn’t available in your location. This happens, for example, when a video contains images owned by an organization that hasn’t given permission to broadcast the content in your country. Often YouTube is the one to put up these restrictions.
  • The uploader of the video has indicated that the video isn’t allowed to be viewed in certain regions.
  • National censorship set up by the government prevents you from accessing (parts of) YouTube. If this happens, the entire website often tends to no longer be accessible. This happens in countries such as China and North Korea. Scroll to the bottom of this article for an overview of countries that are known to have blocked YouTube.

In many of the cases above there’s a quick way to watch your desired YouTube videos anyway.

How Do I Bypass a YouTube Block?

Whether you’re at school, at work, or abroad, you’ll never have to worry that you won’t have access to YouTube. There are several ways to bypass or avoid both national and local YouTube blocks. The first, and most effective, option is to use a VPN.

Unblock YouTube with a VPN

VPN shieldThe safest way to get around YouTube blocks is by using a VPN. A VPN connection will encrypt your internet traffic and redirected it through an external server. This means you’ll be assigned a different IP address, which will also change your virtual location. In other words, by using a VPN you can make it seem as if you’re in a different country.

Most VPN providers have servers all over the world. The server you choose will determine your IP and virtual location. If you use this smartly, you could, for example. pretend to be in the USA while you’re actually in China. This way, you’ll be able to visit websites that would otherwise be blocked – including YouTube.

A VPN unlocks YouTube videos from all over the world, but also comes with other benefits, such as increased online anonymity and security.

Which VPN Is Best For YouTube?

Many independent VPN providers have services that you could use. However, not all of them are of the same quality. Some services are unsafe or won’t be able to unblock restricted content. That’s why we chose three VPN providers that definitely work with YouTube. If you aren’t sure which VPN to choose, feel free to pick one of the options below.

1. NordVPN: unblock countless platforms

NordVPN is one of the most popular VPNs of this moment. This provider is known for its many unblocking features. With NordVPN’s many thousands of servers you’ll be able to watch YouTube to your heart’s content. Moreover, it can unblock content on many other online platforms, such as the American version of Netflix.

With NordVPN you’ll be able to watch YouTube videos from all over the world. In addition, this service is very secure, so your online anonymity and safety remain intact. Moreover, NordVPN is relatively cheap. Check out their website by clicking the button in the banner below.

NordVPN
Deal:
Only $3,49 a month for a 2-year subscription
9.1
  • Excellent protection and a large network of servers
  • Nice and pleasing application
  • No logs
Visit NordVPN

2. ExpressVPN: watch YouTube without lag

If you’re afraid your VPN might negatively affect your internet speed, you might want to try ExpressVPN. ExpressVPN has consistently proven to be the fastest VPN provider around. Aside from that, it has a large server network, although not quite as big as that of NordVPN. Even so, your YouTube videos won’t have to load long with ExpressVPN.

The big advantage of ExpressVPN is that it excels on almost all fronts. This provider is fast, easy to use, has fantastic customer service, offers thousands of servers, works with numerous online services such as Netflix, and is incredibly secure. Unfortunately, this also means it comes at a price: compared to other providers, ExpressVPN is definitely more expensive. Still, their service is undeniably good. If you want quality, we wholeheartedly recommend ExpressVPN.

ExpressVPN
Our pick
Our pick
Deal:
3 months for free with a one-year subscription
9.5
  • Very easy to use VPN
  • Perfect for anonymous browsing, downloading, and streaming (i.e. Netflix)
  • 3000+ servers in 94 countries
Visit ExpressVPN

3. Surfshark: saves you money

A third good option when you want to watch blocked YouTube videos is Surfshark. Surfshark is a relatively new VPN provider that has quickly become one of the best services we’ve tested so far. The biggest advantage of this provider is that it has very cheap subscriptions. For just a couple of euros a month you’ll be fully protected and have the opportunity to unblock online content.

Surfshark’s server network is not (yet) as large as that of ExpressVPN and NordVPN. Still, you’ll probably find just what you need with this provider. They have servers all over the world, so you can unblock almost any YouTube video. Moreover, you can use Surfshark on an infinite number of devices: your whole family can go online safely with just one cheap subscription.

Surfshark
Deal:
Safe and anonymous internet for only $1.99 a month
8.8
  • Very user-friendly and works with Netflix and torrents
  • 30 days money back guarantee. No questions asked!
  • Cheap with many extra options
Visit Surfshark

How Do I Install a VPN?

Installing a VPN is very easy. VPNs often have software that you can easily download from their official website. Once you’ve installed that, you’re almost done already. If you want to know exactly how to do this, follow the steps below:

Installing NordVPN Step by Step Desktop

  1. Create an account with a good VPN provider, for example NordVPN.
  2. Download the VPN software from their official website.
  3. Install the VPN software. Often all you have to do is follow the steps of an installation wizard.
  4. Open the VPN app and log in with the account you created in step 1.
  5. Select a server in a country of your choice.
  6. Enable the VPN by clicking connect.

Now you’re ready to watch YouTube safely and freely! For more information on how to install a VPN on different devices, such as your Google Chromecast or iPad, please click here.

Other Ways to Unblock YouTube Videos

Aside from using a VPN, there are other ways to access blocked YouTube videos. Here are a couple of them.

Use https:// instead of http://

Many companies and schools manually set up restrictions within their network. This means that a YouTube block is typed in by hand, generally resulting in entries such as “http://www.youtube.com”. If you add an ‘s’ to the ‘http’, chances are that the website will become available to you anyway. After all, the HTTPS version of the platform isn’t on the list of blocked websites.

To put it simply, HTTPS is the more secure version of a website. It’s possible that this version is not included in the block list, so you’ll still be able to watch YouTube at school or work. The chances of this method working, however, are slim. After all, technology keeps getting smarter, and the systems used to block websites within a network might automatically restrict access to both the HTTP and the HTTPS version of a site. Even so, it’s still worth a try: you’ll know whether it works in a matter of seconds.

Use a mobile hotspot

Smartphone Wifi IconSmall, local restrictions can also be bypassed by connecting to a mobile hotspot. To do this, turn on the hotspot of your mobile phone and let your computer connect to the Wi-Fi network of this hotspot. Now you’ll be able to access all websites that are blocked by the organization behind the Wi-Fi network. After all, you aren’t using their Wi-Fi, but your own internet bundle.

Of course, this solution does mean that you’re using your own mobile data, which can end up becoming very expensive. Always keep this in mind when you try to get around a YouTube block. Although this trick doesn’t work for nationwide censorship, it can be a solution for bypassing restrictions on networks such as those in schools and offices.

Use a proxy server

Instead of a VPN you could also use a proxy server to get around a YouTube block. A proxy server allows you to change your IP address to that of the proxy. There are many online unblocking websites that function as proxies. If you want to use one of these, you can simply plug in the link to the blocked YouTube video and you’ll be redirected to a page where you can directly watch the video.

Although proxies are similar to VPNs in some ways, the two are not the same. A VPN protects your internet connection and ensures your data can’t be read by others. A proxy server won’t provide you with the same level of privacy and security. Moreover, (public) proxy servers tend to become overloaded fairly quickly, so they can become slow or stop working altogether. A VPN will generally end up performing much better and give you unlimited access.

How Do I Know Which Countries Block a Certain YouTube Video?

If you come across a YouTube video that’s blocked in your location, you can unblock it with a VPN. However, you will need to know in which countries this video isn’t blocked in order to watch it. After all, you’ll have to select a VPN server in one of these countries to watch your video.

There are several websites you can consult to find out which server to use. An example is Unblockvideos. Type or paste the link from a YouTube video into the bar and the website will show you a world map showing where the video is available, as well as where it isn’t. By means of example, this is what that map looks like when you search the official music video of the song Danza Kuduro, to be found on Don Omar’s channel:

YouTube blocked Don Omar unblockvideos map

As you can see, this music video isn’t available in many countries in Europe. This may have to do with broadcasting rights. Because the video is available in the United States, you will be able to access it with a VPN server in the United States. This also goes for servers in any other countries that show up in green.

Countries That Block YouTube

YouTube has over a billion users and gives those users the freedom to upload all kinds of videos. That’s reason for some countries to take measures to censor this ‘free content’. Countries such as China, North Korea and Iran are known to impose blocks on the use of the platform altogether.

The decision to block YouTube often comes from an attempt to control and influence the mindset of citizens. The governments of some countries feel that the platform is spreading illegal messages, for example. YouTube is seen as a threat, because everyone can share their thoughts on it. That’s why it’s mostly totalitarian regimes that choose to block YouTube. You can find out more about this kind of censorship in our “Censorship” category.

The table below lists the countries that are known to be using YouTube restrictions at this moment. It also lists why those blocks have been set up in the first place.

Country Reason for restriction
China Unknown
Eritrea Possible bandwidth considerations
North Korea Prohibited by law
South Sudan According to the government, YouTube showed ‘anti-Islamic’ content
Tajikistan Attempt to keep people from seeing a video in which the president sings out of tune at his son’s wedding
Turkmenistan Safety considerations
Uzbekistan Unknown

Final Thoughts: Free Access to All Videos on YouTube

There are many local and national YouTube restrictions due to limitations on school and work networks, censorship, and restrictions on broadcasting rights. However, there are several ways to get around these blocks. Some solutions, such as using a proxy server or mobile hotspot, don’t always work. Other options tend to be more successful.

A VPN is a solution that works without fail, even with national restrictions on YouTube. Setting up a VPN connection only takes a couple of minutes and will give you increased online anonymity, security and freedom. You won’t just be protected on YouTube, but on any other website or online service you visit as well.

NordVPN is a great VPN to try, especially in combination with YouTube. However, there are other excellent VPNs to choose from. Either way, with the right VPN you will always be able to watch videos on YouTube, wherever you are in the world.

YouTube Videos Not Available: Frequently Asked Questions

Do you have questions about this article or about YouTube blocks in general? We’ll answer them for you. Check our FAQ below and click on a question to see the answer.

Sometimes, you’ll see the message “this video is not available in your country” on YouTube. You might even find that the platform doesn’t work altogether. This can have several causes:

  • Your network administrator has blocked access to YouTube.
  • The video contains content that can’t be shown in your country due to broadcasting rights.
  • The uploader of the video has indicated that the video shouldn’t be broadcasted in your country.
  • Censorship on a national level blocks (parts of) YouTube.

With a good VPN you can bypass these blocks and still watch the videos you wish to see.

If you use a VPN, you’ll be able to watch blocked videos on YouTube. Simply choose a VPN provider and download their software. Then log in with your account and connect to a server in a country of your choice. A VPN changes your IP address, allowing you to bypass geographical restrictions and watch blocked YouTube videos.

If you would like to watch blocked YouTube videos, we recommend NordVPN. NordVPN is a reliable and fast VPN provider that gives you access to all videos on YouTube in no time. You can read more about this provider in our detailed review of NordVPN.

Tech journalist
Tove has been working for VPNoverview since 2017 as a journalist covering cybersecurity and privacy developments. Since 2019 she is VPNoverview.com's cybersecurity news coordinator.

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