How to Watch Netflix USA in Canada with This Free VPN on iPhone, iPad


If you’re a Netflix Canada subscriber, you may already know the U.S. Netflix has a greater selection when it comes TV shows, movies and more.

If you want to watch Netflix USA in Canada (this should also work for UK users and more), this free workaround will let you do so on your iPhone or iPad. All you have to do is install the free VPN from Onavo Protect which will give you access to American content. If you want paid VPNs, check out ExpressVPN or Unblock-Us.

How it works is the VPN will give you an American IP as your data will be routed through Onavo’s servers, opening up the opportunity to view American content (your imagination can run wild here with other apps too).

Ready to watch Netflix USA in Canada? Let’s get started…

1. Download and install the Onavo Protect iOS app. It’ll require you to install their VPN profile on your iOS device (your passcode will be required).

Photo 1

2. Onavo Protect connects automatically all the time, but we don’t want that. We just want to be able to turn it on just before launching Netflix.

So to disable this option, go to Settings > VPN > Select Onavo in the list, tap the ‘i’ icon, and and toggle OFF ‘Connect on Demand’.

Photo 4 IMG 8943

3. To get US Netflix, your iOS device needs an American IP first. Turn the VPN on (Settings > VPN > ON), then launch Netflix (ensure Netflix wasn’t running previously; force close it if it was).

Photo 4

Your Netflix Canada account should now be showing the Netflix USA library, which includes 7 glorious seasons of Macgyver (not available in Netflix Canada), iPhoneinCanada reader Sheldon tells us (thanks!):

Photo 5

Once you have Netflix running, you can use AirPlay to stream it to your Apple TV easily. Also, you can use the site A Better Queue (it’s currently down from too much traffic but should be back soon) to find those highly rated titles based on Rotten Tomato ratings.

Let us know if you’re going to try this workaround and if it works for you. If you’re tired of using a free VPN, check out ExpressVPN or Unblock-Us as it’s quite popular based on reviews on the web.

Thanks Sheldon!


  • Billdozer

    I wonder if it also works with Onavo Extend as it also bounces through their servers when compressing the data and the setup looks the same..

  • @ptbodude

    Well I’ll be MacGyver, it works!

  • MikeJenkinson

    Works for me! Terrific!

  • Boom!

  • Yay!

  • Let us know if you’re going to try.

  • Crosseyedmofo

    MacGyver isnt even in HD 🙁

  • MikeJenkinson

    This trick also works with the WWE Network, which isn’t available in Canada yet.

  • Nate

    How come it won’t allow me to turn off VPN after it is installed?

  • This is supposed to be a joke, right?

  • Did you toggle off the setting ‘connect on demand’?

  • Sheldon Torres

    If you have a big or unlimited data plan, then yes as Onavo Extend only activates its VPN on cellular data and not on wifi. I tried running the VPN manually with Extend but it turns off once it detects your on wifi.

    You can try installing Onavo Protect on top of Extend but Extend stop working properly. Onavo states that both Extend and Protect use the same VPN profile but it does not.

  • Vancityryder

    It won’t let me open it up to turn off the auto connect.

  • What stage of our steps did things go wrong for you?

  • Vancityryder

    I eventually figured it out. I had to go to settings then general to access the VPN. From there I could click on the i and open the menu.

  • Crosseyedmofo

    well yeah

  • Jen

    can we delete the Protect app once the VPN certificate is installed?

  • Sheldon Torres

    I just did it and VPN still works. The Onavo Protect is just a front end interface and the VPN is a backend which is independent of the app.

  • MikeJenkinson

    The only glitch I’ve noticed so far is that when I first turn on the VPN on my iPad, it occasionally runs for about 2 minutes and then turns itself off. Once I go and restart it, it stays connected until I manually turn it off. I spent several hours last night watching the WWE Network, which isn’t accessible in Canada, via this app. So I’m quite happy. This is easily the best iOS tip in a long, long time. Thanks very much for posting it!

  • Glad you’re enjoying it Mike!

  • Paula Fejzullai

    Mine will connect the vpn however any US titles it says “This title isnt available to watch instantly It doesnt do this with the ones available on cdn netflix.

  • Paula Fejzullai

    Sorry. Replying was glitchy. Ive tried to restart both my ph and the vpn a few times. Still receive the same msg. Any ideas how to fix this?

  • a_w_young

    Maybe you should tape two episodes together

  • Sheldon Torres

    Looks like the VPN is not staying connected. Can you confirm that you have “Onavo Protect” and not “Extend”? If you have “Onavo Extend” then the VPN connection will drop when your using wifi and will activate when your on data which is how Onavo Extend is designed for.

  • What is the cost of of this? You might be inclined to say “free” because you forget that when something is “free” then YOU are the product.

    Onavo is a Tel Aviv-based mobile analytics company (now owned by Facebook) and their business is to capture and analyze mobile data use. By installing their VPN you are giving them access to all of your traffic, including (if you use POP or non-SSL/TLS IMAP such as Telus) your email addresses and passwords and all of your email and more.

    As a Canadian using an Israeli service to access an American data centre who knows what protections you have but hey… it’s owned by Facebook; how bad could it be?

  • You have valid concerns. Which is why we wrote:

    “Downsides of this? Onavo was acquired by Facebook last fall, so if you’re paranoid about the latter and your privacy, you might want to skip this.”

    So users will have to make their own decisions here.

  • Jimbeau

    Works great. Thanks. Is there a similarly easy way to use VPN on a desktop Mac?

  • Paeker44

    Won’t work for me. I believe I’ve done everything right, but I still get the Canadian Netflix.

  • jtom0629

    Thanks for the article Gary .Why using a VPN when you can use a DNS service like UnoTelly? The DNS option is much faster and easier to use.

  • Bellamonueman

    Followed instructions to a tee and Netflix still shows Canadian titles only

  • Bellamonueman

    And I do have Onavo protect

  • Moe

    I have app on iPhone and works fine, but on my iPad it works fine but it is pulling up London. Profile says its a U.S. vpn so not sure what issue is. Does this when I’m overseas and even in the US

  • Hannah

    It worked!!! thanks so much 🙂

  • Kendra

    Thanks for the article Gary. Netflix app (or Hulu, or BBC, etc) is great on iPad. If you live outside the USA, you can use tools like UnoTelly to get Netflix (or Hulu, or BBC, etc) on your iPad.

  • BilalAsif1900

    I love to watch Hulu on my Ipad that’s why i know various resources about how to set VPN on Ipad. One of the best resource is VpnRanks. This website provide best ranking for VPN Providers.

  • Tauseef

    By using vpn for Netflix everyone can easily access which is blocked. Just connect with vpn and watch Netflix in all over the world: http://www.vpnranks. com/5-best-vpns-for-netflix/

  • Sally Croft

    You can unblock Netflix from any location in the world with PureVPN.

  • Night Fury

    which VPN service you guys using?

  • Stephanie Kevin

    In past i have tried express vpn but i cant set it up on my Xbox
    Recently i had the same issue with HMA, than tried Purevpn it worked on Xbox and smart tv yet speed is the issue
    Any suggestion?

  • Sosabb

    I get the American Netflix, but when I’m about to watch an episode of a show, it says “Error : you seem to be using an unblocker or a proxy. Please turn off any of these and try again”. But if I turn off the Vpn, I get the Canadian Netflix. What can I do?