Thanks to technology and demand, what used to be a much smaller amount of entertainment has become a large, competitive field. Homes have gone from only watching local channels to adding cable television channels to adding some streaming services to cancelling cable television and just having multiple streaming services. This has happened at breakneck speed, too, with streaming services offering a widely different array of entertainment and not necessarily a lot of overlap.
People get used to being able to watch certain shows and listening to their own music. When travelling, the hotel probably offers either cable television or a specific streaming service. That means that what you want to watch or listen to may simply not be available. Even if you have your own device, such as a laptop or tablet, you may not be able to use your regular streaming service because the service is limited by location.
Once the service realises that you are not in the correct geographic location, you may be denied access to a service you legitimately subscribe to. This is where a Surfshark VPN for travelling can help you.
What is a VPN?
A Virtual Private Network protects your data from prying eyes by masking your IP address (your Internet Protocol address). Because your location is blocked, it will look as though your data is going through the VPN instead of through your personal device. Even your browsing history will be hidden, so you won’t get all those creepy suggestions about related products when you have looked at something similar.
Even if you weren’t interested in using a VPN server for other reasons, it is important to keep in mind that the main reason people use a VPN is to protect themselves from identity theft. With online crime on the rise, it is important to remember that your banking and other information may be accessible through your phone or computer. Most people are paying bills and banking online, so all that information is vulnerable if you use public Internet.
The best thing, though, is that even though your identity and data are hidden, your data will still travel as fast. That means that if you use a VPN for streaming services, you won’t have to worry about slowed speeds and interrupted shows. The quality will be equal to what you expect when you’re at home.
Anyone who travels abroad has run into the problem that some sites are blocked in other countries. It doesn’t matter that the country is similar politically or even that the other country has the same service; your particular service, purchased in your home country, won’t let you access what you want to watch while you are travelling. Even if you can log on, there may be certain shows you expect to be able to watch that are not available in the country you are visiting. If you use a VPN, you can trick the service into thinking you are really still at home.
Streaming services are highly dependent on contracts they make with other media companies as to which movies and television shows they can offer and in which markets. Netflix even explains in its terms of service that users can only expect to be allowed to watch certain shows if they are offered in that country.
When you use a VPN, your IP address is hidden and masked by the company providing the service. Because of that, your favorite streaming service won’t know you are visiting somewhere else if you are using a VPN. The only way they know where you are is by looking at your IP address, so they will think you are wherever the VPN company wants them to think you are. You will still have access to Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu, or whatever your favourite streaming service is even if you are in a place where that service isn’t allowed.
Is it cheating?
Some people may feel that they are doing something unfair or unethical. In this case, you aren’t stealing something you haven’t paid for. No one is encouraging anyone to find a way to stream the service without paying for it. Using a VPN is just a way to still have access to the subscription you’ve already paid for when you are visiting another country or area where the service isn’t offered.
So unblocking the best streaming services for travel can be easy if you use a VPN. If you are trying to finish watching the rest of the episodes in a series, or if you have certain movies you want to watch again, you can keep your access to them no matter where you are physically. The only precaution is that some streaming services are catching on and trying to block anyone using a VPN, which isn’t fair because a VPN is for more than watching movies.
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