New Zealand is an interesting place with picturesque landscapes. Not many places can pack so much adventure in, with snowy mountains, temperate rainforests and volcanoes surrounding its largest city, Auckland. Wherever you are in the land of the long white cloud, you should make sure to stay safe with one of our best VPNs for New Zealand.
If you’re doing a tour of the Antipodes, we also recommend you check out our best VPN for Australia selection.
Using a virtual private network is a no-brainer no matter where you are because doing so will keep you protected from online dangers and help you access blocked content. Many countries practice censorship, but not necessarily to the same degree. China is one of the worst culprits, while New Zealand is mostly free.
There is a filtering system called the Digital Child Exploitation Filtering System, which is run by the Department of Internal Affairs, but it is voluntary for internet service providers to join. It uses the Films, Videos and Publications Classification Act 1993 to justify prohibiting content categorized as objectionable and Swedish software to do the filtering.
The act defines objectionable as, among other things, any materials that promotes or supports sexual abuse or exploitation of children and young persons, torture or the infliction of violence and cruelty. The DCEFS is aimed at preventing users from accessing such content while also raising awareness of child sexual exploitation.
If you’re found to knowingly possess or download objectionable material, you could be sentenced to up to five years in prison. Anyone found to make or knowingly trade, distribute or display objectionable content over the internet can face up to 10 years in jail. A corporation can be fined up to 200,000 New Zealand dollars ($136,000).
Other than that, the internet in New Zealand is open. The biggest hurdle to overcome is geoblocks. Those are basically regional restrictions placed on content to stop certain countries from viewing it. A good VPN can help you get by them.
Surveillance in New Zealand
When Edward Snowden revealed evidence of mass surveillance in many countries, New Zealand was included. It analyzed private communications sent over the internet, satellite, radio and phone networks and the Government Communications Security Bureau was able to track every move you made online, every call you made and every message you sent.
It 2012, it emerged that the GCSB illegally spied on internet tycoon Kim Dotcom, and an official report found that his case was one of many in which the bureau had overstepped its bounds. New legislation that basically gave the GCSB more powers to spy on residents was enacted in 2013. Dotcom was one of the strongest opponents of the bill.
No one knows the full extent of government surveillance, so it’s a good idea to keep yourself protected. Read our piece on government surveillance for a better understanding.
Cyberthreats in New Zealand
The GCSB’s National Cyber Security Centre reported a 17 percent increase in cyberthreats from June 2016 to June 2017. The communications minister called for an increase in cybersecurity to keep citizens and organizations safe.
In early 2018, the government said it would be giving its 2015 Cyber Security Strategy and Action Plan a facelift. While it’s trying to address the rising number of cyberthreats, that doesn’t mean you won’t come across any, so it’s a good idea to have a decent antivirus installed. Our best VPN for Thailand article shows an example of how bad it can get.
Best VPN for New Zealand 2018
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What Makes a VPN the Best for New Zealand
VPNs are made of many parts and some providers incorporate them better than others. You’ll want one that has a large network of servers as that will help you bypass content restrictions, such as geoblocks. If you want to view content that’s limited to New Zealand, such as your favorite program on Lightbox or Neon, you’ll need servers there.
If streaming is going to be your main activity, you’ll want good speeds and unlimited bandwidth, so you don’t get stuck on an annoying loading screen or end up hitting your data limit. In the latter case, the VPN will stop working and leave you vulnerable.
It should also have good security to protect you from online dangers, such as cybercrime, and keep you hidden from surveillance. Privacy is just as important and good security alone won’t ensure it. The company should have a strong no-logs policy, which means it won’t keep a record of your online activities.
Other factors to consider are what devices the provider supports, how easy it is to use, how many devices can be connected at once, the quality of customer service and price.
Best VPN for New Zealand: ExpressVPN
The best VPN for New Zealand is ExpressVPN because it is an excellent provider that ticks all the boxes.
It has a large network of servers in more than 90 countries, giving you the best chance of circumventing blocks. That includes some in New Zealand, too, so you can access content from there.
It’s the fastest VPN available, so you shouldn’t be left hypnotized by a loading screen. Plus, there are no bandwidth caps to worry about, which helped it come in first in our best VPN for streaming piece, too.
ExpressVPN has great security out of the box, with the option to increase it. There’s also a strict no-logs policy to ensure your online activities are kept secret. Read our ExpressVPN review for a better look at the service.
Other Reasons We Like ExpressVPN
It’s a great choice if you don’t have much experience with setting up or using a VPN. Almost everything is done for you once it’s installed. You just need to connect to a suitable server. You can tweak the settings if you want to, but make sure you know what you’re doing beforehand.
Clients are available for Windows, macOS, Android and iOS, and they’re easy to use. There are also browser extensions for Firefox, Chrome and Safari. You can have up to three devices connected at the same time. That’s less than some providers allow, but may still be enough for you.
Help is on hand with 24/7 live chat and email. The live chat is slower than some of its competitors’, but the staff is helpful and aims to solve your problem quickly.
ExpressVPN is an expensive choice compared to others, but the quality of its service makes it worthwhile and we recommend it. Besides, if you opt for a longer subscription, you can reduce the overall cost significantly. There is a 30-day money-back guarantee, too, so you may as well give it a try.
- Easy to use
- Slow switch time
- 3 simultaneous connections
NordVPN is often included in our top five articles because it is a great service that is comparable to our top choice, as you can read in our ExpressVPN vs NordVPN piece.
It has more than 5,000 servers in 62 countries, including 21 in New Zealand, so you shouldn’t have a problem getting to what you want.
Speeds are good, but if you connect to a server that’s far away, you may find that they dip. Still, it’s fast enough to handle streaming if that’s what you want to do. It also has unlimited bandwidth, so there are no limits to worry about.
You are well-protected with NordVPN as it has some of the best security available, with encryption protocol choices and the additional option of using double-hop servers. Your privacy is honored with a solid no-logs policy, too. Our NordVPN review goes into more detail about the service.
Other Reasons We Like NordVPN
NordVPN can be used on Windows, macOS, Android and iOS with a quick and easy setup and easy-to-use interface. You can also connect up to six devices at once.
If you have a problem, you can look at the large knowledgebase to see if you’re able to fix it yourself. For more help, you can contact support through live chat or email. Live chat is the best option, but you’re in good hands either way.
NordVPN’s monthly rate is okay, but you can save money by signing up for a longer plan. There’s a 30-day refund, as well, for peace of mind.
- Gets into streaming services
- Lack of detail on server location
CyberGhost has servers in over 60 countries and 10 are in New Zealand, so you can view content from there.
It has good speeds, but, like NordVPN, it can become slow over long distances. They’re still decent, though, so you shouldn’t have problems. Plus, there’s no limit to how much bandwidth you can use.
Its security is good, too, and will keep you safe from online dangers. There’s also a firm no-logs policy, meaning it won’t keep a record of your online activities. Check out our full CyberGhost review for more on the service.
Other Reasons We Like CyberGhost
You can use CyberGhost on Windows, macOS, Android and iOS. The desktop clients have a dynamic tile interface that may not be your style, but it’s okay once you get used to it. That said, the mobile apps are good. You can connect up to seven devices simultaneously, earning it second place in our best VPN for multiple devices piece, though seven is also the limit for installations.
If you have problems, you can look at the extensive knowledgebase. If that doesn’t help, you can contact support through live chat or email, with live chat being the fastest option.
CyberGhost’s monthly price isn’t bad, but you’ll save money by subscribing to a longer period. You can use the seven-day trial to make sure you like it, and there’s a 45-day money-back guarantee, too.
- Easy to use
- Dynamic tile interface
VyprVPN doesn’t have as many servers as our other choices, with less than 1,000 to choose from, but it covers 64 countries, so you should still find one to suit your needs. Some are in Auckland, too, in case you need them.
It doesn’t have the best speeds, but they should be okay. There are no bandwidth caps to limit what you do.
It has good security, though, with decent encryption and its own Chameleon protocol to add more protection to the VPN tunnel. It also has a strict no-logging policy to honor your privacy. Our VyprVPN review goes into more detail about the service.
Other Reasons We Like VyprVPN
Setup is easy, with desktop clients for Windows and macOS, though the layout could be better. Mobile apps for Android and iOS are also available and it is one of the best VPNs for Android. You can connect up to three devices at a time with the standard package. The premium package allows you to connect up to five.
There’s a handy FAQ section to help with small issues. You can also contact a member of the staff through live chat or email. Live chat is quicker, but email is the better option for more technical issues.
The monthly plan is affordable, but you can bring the overall cost down by opting for a longer subscription. There isn’t a refund policy, but you can make use of the three-day trial to see if you like it.
- Chameleon protocol
- Three-day trial
- Network disappoints
- No refund policy
TorGuard isn’t as good as our other choices, but it still has plenty to offer. There are over 3,000 servers across 55 countries, including New Zealand, so you have lots of choices.
Speeds vary, but should be good enough, and there’s no bandwidth limit. Getting into streaming services isn’t its best feature, though. If you struggle, you can get a dedicated IP address for the location you need. It costs extra, but it’s guaranteed to work. That may come in handy if you travel and it has earned a spot in our best VPN for travellers article, too.
As for security, it’s one of the most customizable services available, with different protocols to choose from. It doesn’t keep a log of your activities, either. Read our TorGuard review for more.
Other Reasons We Like TorGuard
TorGuard can be used on Windows, macOS, Android and iOS. The clients are easy to use but the mobile apps can be a pain to set up. You can connect up to five devices at a time. If you want more, you can add up to 20 to your package for $1 each.
If you need help, you can look at the online guides and forum to try to fix the issue yourself. Live chat is available, but it isn’t always staffed, so you might have to leave a message and wait for a reply via email.
Its monthly price isn’t bad, but you can save money by signing up for a longer period. A seven-day money-back guarantee is available, so there’s nothing to lose.
- Large server network
- Difficult to switch servers
We hope we’ve helped you choose a suitable provider for New Zealand. You need one that has a good network, so you can find a server that fits your needs. If you want to access content from New Zealand, you’ll need servers there, too.
It should have good speeds and no bandwidth caps. Tight security is also important, as well as a strict no-logs policy to keep your activities a secret.
ExpressVPN is our pick for the best VPN for New Zealand because of its massive server network, great features and excellent security. You should have no problem using it, and, with the 30-day money-back guarantee, there’s no reason not to try it.
If you have suggestions for using a VPN in New Zealand, let us know in the comments below. Thank you for reading.