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Does Mullvad Work with Netflix US?

Simon Migliano Head of Research at Top10VPN

Simon is a recognized world expert in VPNs. He's tested hundreds of VPN services and his research has featured on the BBC, The New York Times, CNet and more. Read full bio

Our Verdict

Mullvad does not work well with Netflix US. We tested each of its 25 US servers and currently only 2 are able to unblock streaming content. The VPN doesn't work with Hulu, Disney+, BBC iPlayer or any non-US Netflix libraries, either. Mullvad is still a good VPN for other uses, but we don't recommend it for streaming Netflix.

a projector with the Mullvad VPN logo projects a distorted Netflix logo onto a screen while a couple watches on

A good-quality VPN lets you use your Netflix subscription to watch up to 6,000 ‘extra’ movies and TV shows. This is because Netflix restricts certain videos to specific geographic regions, meaning movies like Casino Royale are only available on American Netflix.

When you use a VPN, you hide your IP address and spoof your location so that Netflix thinks you’re located somewhere different. You can then stream content that is not usually available in your region.

Unsurprisingly, Netflix works hard to ban the use of VPNs and proxy servers on its site. This means that only the very best VPN services reliably unblock Netflix in 2021.

We tested Mullvad VPN to see how well it works with Netflix US. In this guide, we’ll reveal the findings from our tests.

We’ll then explain what you can do if your Mullvad app isn’t working with Netflix, and introduce some of our favorite streaming VPNs.

For unrestricted Netflix streaming, see our list of the best Netflix VPNs.

Tested: Mullvad Does Not Work Well with Netflix US

Mullvad mobile app

We tested each of Mullvad’s 25 US server locations and found that only servers in Charlotte and San Jose currently work with Netflix. This is a significantly worse performance than we have seen in previous tests and appears to indicate that unblocking Netflix is not a priority for Mullvad.

Other major VPN services, such as ExpressVPN and NordVPN, openly and actively support Netflix users by providing resources on their websites explaining how best to access the service.

By contrast, Mullvad makes no mention of Netflix or any other streaming service on its website. Nor does it offer any streaming-optimized servers, like CyberGhost and PrivateVPN do.

Simply put, we don’t recommend using Mullvad for streaming Netflix.

For the time being, the VPN unblocks US Netflix in two of its server locations. But it seems as though it’s only a matter of time before Netflix manages to block these servers too.

Given that streaming does not appear to be a priority for Mullvad, we can’t recommend it as a reliable VPN for Netflix.

In the rest of this section, we’ll take a more detailed look at using Mullvad for Netflix. Alternatively, you can check out some more reliable VPN alternatives or read our full Mullvad review.

Disappointingly Small Server Network

Screenshot of Mullvad's Server List

Generally, Netflix blocks VPN users from accessing its service by identifying and blacklisting IP addresses that belong to VPN servers. It’s therefore important for VPN services to have large server networks, with thousands of different IP addresses, in order to reliably unblock Netflix.

Unfortunately, Mullvad operates a fairly small server network. It offers just 768 servers, spread across 37 countries. By contrast, our top recommended Netflix VPN, ExpressVPN, has 3,000 servers in over 94 countries.

Mullvad’s small network makes it much easier for Netflix to detect and block each and every one of its servers, making it an unreliable service for streaming Netflix.

Extremely Fast Streaming Speeds

Mullvad is one of the fastest VPNs around. If the service ever does start working reliably with Netflix, you can expect consistently quick speeds, full HD streaming, and minimal buffering.

In our most recent tests, we recorded an average speed loss of just 4%, with download speeds dropping from 100Mbps to 96Mbps on local, UK-to-UK connections.

International connections tend to be more important when it comes to streaming. Here, Mullvad still performs very respectably:

Country Avg. Download Speed Avg. Speed Loss
Germany 92Mbps 8%
USA 73Mbps 27%
Japan 49Mbps 51%
Australia 35Mbps 65%

Our download speeds dropped about 27% when connecting to the US to unblock the American Netflix library. This sounds like a lot, but it is still more than fast enough for high-quality streaming. Here are the minimum speeds that Netflix recommends:

screenshot of Netflix's minimum speed recommendations

EXPERT TIP: Use the WireGuard VPN protocol to access Mullvad VPN’s quickest speeds. You can read more about this in our guide to the fastest VPNs.

Mullvad Doesn’t Work Well with Other Streaming Services

Mullvad generally won’t unblock other streaming services, either:

  • Hulu: Mullvad is unable to bypass Hulu’s VPN restrictions.
  • BBC iPlayer: BBC iPlayer is blocked when connecting through UK-based servers.
  • Disney+: Mullvad does not work with Disney+.
  • HBO Go: This was the only streaming service that Mullvad could unblock.

In short, Mullvad is simply not a good choice for streaming. It doesn’t work reliably with Netflix, Hulu, or BBC iPlayer.

NOTE: We’ve had some recent success unblocking HBO Go with Mullvad, but given the company’s seeming lack of interest in supporting streaming, we wouldn’t expect this to last for too much longer.

What Other Important Features Does Mullvad Offer?

While Mullvad isn’t a good choice for Netflix users, it’s an excellent VPN in many other respects. It’s great for torrenting safely and is one of the most private and secure VPNs we’ve ever tested.

Mullvad has an impressive no-logging policy that has been independently verified through a third-party audit. It also doesn’t require any personal information when you sign up, which is a great feature for privacy-conscious users.

The VPN comes with all the essential privacy and security controls, including AES-256 encryption, DNS and IPV6 leak blocking, and an automatic VPN kill switch. Users can also choose between two popular VPN protocols: OpenVPN and WireGuard.

Finally, Mullvad offers apps for all major desktop operating systems, including Windows, Linux, and MacOS. It has a mobile app for iOS devices, but its Android app is stillonly available in beta.

For a more extensive overview, read our expert’s review of Mullvad.

SUMMARY

Mullvad is not a good VPN for unblocking Netflix. It’s a great service for torrenting and it delivers very fast connection speeds, but Mullvad is simply not designed to work reliably with streaming platforms, like Netflix.

Mullvad Not Working with Netflix? Three Workarounds to Try

How to unblock Netflix proxy error.

Netflix’s “Streaming Error” message.

When you visit Netflix while connected to Mullvad VPN, you’re likely to encounter the Netflix proxy error m7111-5059. This usually means the streaming site has blacklisted your VPN server’s IP address.

Here are a few workarounds you can try to help bypass this error:

  1. Connect to a Different Server

    The Netflix VPN ban works by blocking IP addresses known to belong to VPN servers. You can therefore try disconnecting from your current VPN server and connecting to a new one, in the hope that you’ll find a server whose IP address has not (yet) been blacklisted by Netflix.

    With Mullvad, you’re limited to just two server locations for unblocking US Netflix: Charlotte and San Jose.

    Reconnect to a different server in these cities by clicking on the Switch location button, scrolling down to the US servers list, and connecting to one of the two locations.

    EXPERT TIP: Connect to the closest possible VPN server to your location in order to get the fastest speeds.

  2. Try an Alternative Netflix Library

    If you want to watch a specific TV show or movie that isn’t available in your region, you might be able to locate it in a different streaming library.

    Unogs.com is a regularly updated database which displays what’s available in which regions. Try connecting to a server in a country which contains your desired show or movie in its library.

    EXPERT TIP: Netflix Originals, such as Selling Sunset and The Queen’s Gambit, are available in all locations. You don’t need to have your VPN on to access them.

  3. Switch to a Different VPN Service

    Ultimately, the most likely reason why you’re seeing the m7111-5059 error code is because Mullvad doesn’t work well with Netflix.

    Your best option is to choose a different VPN service that is known to reliably and consistently unblock Netflix. We’ll introduce some working alternatives in the next section.

Alternatives to Mullvad VPN: Three Great VPNs for Netflix

Here are the three best VPN services for unblocking Netflix libraries around the world, and how they compare with Mullvad VPN:

VPN Provider No. of Netflix Libraries Server Network Size Cheapest Monthly Price Avg. Speed Loss (UK-US)
ExpressVPN 19 3,000 $6.67 17%
Mullvad 1* 768 $5.95 27%
NordVPN 15 5,343 $3.30 7%
Windscribe Pro 42 Undisclosed $4.08 32%

*Mullvad currently only unblocks US Netflix with its San Jose and Charlotte servers.

1ExpressVPN

ExpressVPN is the top-performing VPN service in 2021. It offers some of the fastest speeds around and has an impressive suite of security and privacy features. It’s also compatible with every type of device, including game consoles and smart TVs.

Although it is more expensive than Mullvad and requires a 15-month commitment to enjoy the lowest price, it does offer a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Most importantly, ExpressVPN consistently unblocks 19 Netflix libraries around the world, including those in the US, the UK, Germany, and Japan.

Read our ExpressVPN review to learn more.

2Windscribe

Windscribe Free logo in our Windscribe Free VPN review

Windscribe unblocks 42 Netflix libraries – far more than any other VPN we’ve tested. It offers native apps for the Amazon Fire TV stick and smart TVs, too, so you can easily stream Ultra HD Netflix on your TV.

Windscribe also has a free tier, which is the only truly free VPN service that works with Netflix. However, it should be noted that Windscribe Free’s 10GB data cap will only let you stream about four hours of TV shows and movies each month.

To find out more, read our dedicated guide to using Windscribe for Netflix.

3NordVPN

NordVPN

NordVPN unblocks slightly fewer Netflix libraries than ExpressVPN and Windscribe, but it is still a very reliable and effective VPN for streaming on desktop and mobile devices.

With NordVPN, we’ve recorded some of the fastest international speeds we’ve ever seen. In our latest tests, it averaged an amazing 93Mbps download speed when connecting from the UK to servers on the eastern coast of the US. This is an average speed loss of just 7%, which makes streaming Netflix an effortless and buffer-free experience.

Check out our full guide to watching Netflix with NordVPN to learn more.

Bottom Line: Don’t Use Mullvad VPN for Streaming

If you’re mainly after a VPN for streaming, we don’t recommend Mullvad. Although it currently unblocks the US Netflix library in two of its server locations, we don’t foresee this being the case for too much longer.

For a VPN that works more reliably with Netflix, we recommend choosing either ExpressVPN, Windscribe, or NordVPN.

That said, Mullvad certainly has its strengths. It’s one of the fastest, most secure, and most anonymous VPNs we’ve tested. It offers an impressive array of security features, including top-tier encryption, a kill switch, and leak blocking.

If security and privacy are your main concerns, Mullvad is a great VPN – just don’t rely on it for unblocking Netflix.

About the Author


  • Simon Migliano Head of Research at Top10VPN

    Simon Migliano

    Simon is a recognized world expert in VPNs. He's tested hundreds of VPN services and his research has featured on the BBC, The New York Times, CNet and more. Read full bio