The Best VPNs for Japan (and Japanese Netflix)
Every week we manually test 55 VPNs specifically for Japan and for Netflix Japan access.
After carrying out thousands of tests, we have the data to prove which VPNs actually work in Japan.
We mainly test for the speed, range, and reliability of a VPN’s Japanese servers. We also measure consistent access to Netflix Japan and other Japanese video platforms.
After testing which VPNs work with which Netflix library, we can reveal most popular VPNs can’t unblock Netflix Japan.
Following our tests, below are the three best VPNs for getting a Japanese IP address and streaming Japanese Netflix from abroad:
1. ExpressVPN: The Best VPN for Japan
Consistent access to Japanese Netflix, fast long-distance speeds, and bespoke apps across devices.
ExpressVPN Test Ratings
Overall Japan Rating: 9.6/10
Japan Server Locations: 9.7/10
Unblocks Netflix Japan: 9.6/10
Unblocks Other Japanese Content: 9.5/10
Streaming Device Compatibility: 9.3/10
ExpressVPN is the overall best VPN for Japan, and it’s also our highest-rated VPN for unblocking video content.
The VPN service has fast download speeds connecting into Japan, the widest device compatibility, and great server coverage – but it’s not as good as NordVPN for unblocking Netflix Japan specifically.
ExpressVPN unblocked the Japanese Netflix library in all our tests, and it accessed other Japanese streaming platforms including the Japanese version of Prime Video, Hulu, and local channels like TV Tokyo.
While ExpressVPN unblocks 10 Netflix regions, we found NordVPN’s servers to be more reliable at unblocking Netflix Japan, though.
If you’re looking to stream Netflix on your TV, ExpressVPN may be the better choice, though. It’s easy to use ExpressVPN with a Fire TV Stick. It also offers a native app for routers, too.
ExpressVPN is one of the fastest VPNs for Japan, even when connecting from far away countries. We recorded an average download speed of 83Mbps connecting to the VPN’s Japan servers – only 17% slower than our normal internet speed. This is more than enough for HD and UHD/4K streaming.
Much like NordVPN, you can also use ExpressVPN’s free trial to test the VPN for free. This is available to iOS and Android users, and there’s a 30-day money-back guarantee for other platforms, too.
Get ExpressVPN or read our complete ExpressVPN review.
2. NordVPN: Best VPN for Netflix Japan
NordVPN provides the fastest speeds and consistent access to Japanese Netflix, with user-friendly apps and the largest number of Japanese VPN servers.
NordVPN Test Ratings
Overall Japan Rating: 9.5/10
Japan Server Locations: 9.4/10
Unblocks Netflix Japan: 9.9/10
Unblocks Other Japanese Content: 9.5/10
Streaming Device Compatibility: 8.9/10
NordVPN is the best VPN for watching Japanese Netflix abroad. It consistently unblocked Netflix Japan in our tests – we’ve found that the default Japan server works every single time. In fact, NordVPN is a very good VPN for Netflix in general.
Our latest speed tests indicate that NordVPN is the fastest VPN for Japan on this list, overtaking ExpressVPN. We recorded an average download speed of 89Mbps connecting into Japan from our base in the US. This is an excellent result and more than fast enough for HD streaming and quick video loading times.
The VPN also unblocks other Japanese streaming services, including the Japanese version of Prime Video and Hulu. However, it did not work with the Japanese version of DAZN.
NordVPN’s apps are well-designed and intuitive to use. You can use NordVPN on a wide range of devices, and its Fire TV Stick app is particularly great if you want to stream on your TV.
Sadly, NordVPN doesn’t have a dedicated router app like ExpressVPN does, which makes it harder to use on games consoles and smart TVs.
While NordVPN does offer a Smart DNS tool, it’s only designed to access US streaming websites.
Despite these minor drawbacks, NordVPN is an affordable VPN cheaper than ExpressVPN and Proton VPN. It only costs $3.29 per month on a two-year subscription plan.
You can even use the VPN for free by taking advantage of NordVPN’s free trial offer. You can try the VPN free for 7 days on Android and iOS devices, or claim the 30-day money-back guarantee on other platforms.
Get NordVPN or read our complete NordVPN review.
3. Proton VPN Free: Best Free VPN for Japan
Proton VPN Free includes access to multiple Japanese servers, with quality apps for Fire TV Stick and Android TV.
Proton VPN Free Test Ratings
Overall Japan Rating: 5.0/10
Japan Server Locations: 8.5/10
Unblocks Netflix Japan: 0.0/10
Unblocks Other Japanese Content: 0.0/10
Streaming Device Compatibility: 7.0/10
The free version of Proton VPN is one of the only free VPNs that comes with both an unlimited data allowance and multiple servers in Japan.
You can therefore use Proton VPN to get a free Japanese IP address and access Japanese websites. But the VPN won’t unblock Netflix, unfortunately.
During our many years of testing, Proton VPN Free has never worked with Netflix Japan, or any other Netflix library for that matter.
This is not unusual: our tests have been unable to find a single free VPN that works to access Netflix Japan from other countries. Most don’t even include Japanese servers on their free network.
However, the premium version of Proton VPN does have an excellent history of unblocking Japanese Netflix. It has 28 working servers based in Japan that assign you Tokyo or Osaka IP addresses.
Using the free version of the VPN, we recorded speeds of 87Mbps connecting into Japan from our base in the US. This is fast, particularly for a free VPN, and only marginally slower than NordVPN.
At $4.99 per month on its longest subscription, the premium version of Proton VPNs app is more expensive than many other competing VPN services. However, it’s user-friendly and it will work with Netflix in multiple regions, including Japan.
Get Proton VPN or read our complete Proton VPN Free review.