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Best VPN for HBO Max in 2022: Free & Paid Options to Watch From Anywhere

If you try to watch HBO Max in Canada, the U.K. or another country that isn’t covered, you’ll get the error message “HBO Max isn’t available in your region.” In that case, you’ll need a HBO Max VPN with servers in the U.S. or other supported countries to circumvent HBO systems. Keep reading to learn the best VPN for HBO Max.

Samson Max
By Samson Max (Writer, Linking Editor)
— Last Updated: 2022-06-20T17:07:49+00:00 Facts checked by Eugenie Tiu

HBO Max doesn’t have a catalog as diverse as Netflix, but its quality is tough to beat. It offers an impressive collection of original movies, including hundreds of acclaimed titles from the renowned Warner Bros. studios. However, when you travel abroad, you may need the best VPN for HBO Max to continue watching your favorite movies.  

Key Takeaways:

  • ExpressVPN is undoubtedly the best HBO Max VPN due to its unmatched ability to unblock the streaming platform and excellent speeds. 
  • NordVPN and Surfshark are cheaper alternatives to ExpressVPN. They are not as fast as our top pick but deliver a buffering-free streaming experience; see our Surfshark vs NordVPN comparison. 
  • Windscribe is the best free VPN for HBO Max, with nine free servers in the U.S. to unblock the streaming platform. 

A virtual private network (VPN) assigns you a unique IP address, corresponding to the location of the server you’re connected to, making it appear that you are accessing HBO Max from a country where the service is available.

In this article, we’ll reveal the five best VPNs for HBO Max. We’ll discuss their nitty-gritty details, including their pricing and features, to help you find one that can unblock HBO Max regardless of your physical location. Our top HBO Max VPN is ExpressVPN because of its speed and security. Read on for the full list.

If you want to stream other HBO Max libraries, you’ll need to have an ad-free HBO Max account; otherwise, you can stream HBO Max content only from your home country. Read more of the details in our guide to streaming HBO Max from abroad.

  • Yes, HBO Max is available in some European, Latin American and Caribbean countries.

  • Yes, Mexico is one of the countries where HBO Max is available. However, the Mexican library isn’t as diverse as the U.S. A VPN can help you unlock the collection of movies and TV shows in the U.S. library, as long as you have an ad-free account.

  • Yes, it does, provided you’re using a reputable VPN provider such as ExpressVPN or NordVPN. However, no VPN is perfect, so if you have any issues, try using another server before giving up.

  • The best VPN for HBO Max is ExpressVPN because it gets into the streaming service reliably and has excellent streaming performance.

  • If your VPN service doesn’t work with HBO Max, the VPN server you are connecting to is unable to bypass HBO Max geo-restrictions. You could switch servers to rectify that issue. However, if you swap servers and the VPN is still unable to get into HBO Max, it means the VPN is unreliable, and you should consider using an alternative.

Top VPNs for HBO Max

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    • : Credit card, Google Pay, AmazonPay, ACH Transfer, UnionPay, Crypto Currencies, PayPal (via Paddle)
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    $4.08 / month (save 55%) (All Plans)3-day money-back guarantee
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    • : PayPal, Credit card
    • : 10
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What Makes the Best VPN for HBO Max

When looking for an HBO Max VPN, you’d be tempted to grab the best VPN for streaming and be on your way. However, that would present you with some problems because not all streaming VPNs handle HBO Max. 

We’ll discuss the traits of the best VPN for HBO Max in a bit, but first, here’s a sneak peek into our top five VPNs for HBO Max: 

  1. ExpressVPN — Best HBO VPN with blazing-fast speeds
  2. NordVPN — Affordable HBO Max VPN with solid security & dedicated IPs
  3. Surfshark — Pocket-friendly streaming VPN with the best U.S. server distribution
  4. Windscribe — Best free VPN for HBO Max
  5. Private Internet Access — Budget-friendly HBO VPN with dedicated IPs

First and foremost, the VPN should be able to unblock HBO Max. That means it should have VPN servers in countries where HBO Max is available.

While HBO Max is also available in select Latin American, Caribbean and European nations, the U.S. library remains the largest. Luckily, nearly all VPNs offer servers in the U.S., meaning you have plenty of options to unblock the largest and most coveted HBO Max library.

HBO error message
You need a premium VPN to watch HBO Max in countries like the U.K., France, Canada and Australia. 

In addition, the VPN should be fast enough to load and stream movies without interruptions. It should have stellar download speeds and unmatched consistency, to boot. This way, whether you’re in Canada or Australia, you can connect to a server in the U.S. and enjoy an excellent streaming experience.

However, even the fastest VPN doesn’t guarantee a great streaming experience. The VPN should also be secure enough to hide your traffic from the prying internet service provider (ISP). Why? Sometimes, your ISP can intentionally throttle your internet speed if they detect network congestion caused by things like streaming. 

Lastly, the VPN should be compatible with the devices you use. If you want your movies on large screens, get a VPN for Apple TV, Android TV, Amazon Fire TV Stick and other smart TVs. However, if you’ll be watching your movies on the move, the VPN should offer native apps for smartphones and laptops.

The Top 5 HBO Max VPN Services 

Our top five VPNs offer stellar speeds, the ability to access HBO Max and diverse device compatibility. On top of that, the VPNs on our list have solid digital security and privacy to give you maximum online safety as you watch HBO Max content. We’ll discuss the strengths and weaknesses (if any) of the VPN services, starting with ExpressVPN

1. ExpressVPN

ExpressVPN app
ExpressVPN comes into its element when unblocking streaming services such as Netflix, BBC iPlayer and HBO Max online services. 

More details about ExpressVPN:

  • Pricing: $6.67 per month for the 15-month plan 
  • Provider website: expressvpn.com

Pros:

  • Lightning-fast speed
  • 30-day money-back guarantee
  • 23 servers in the U.S.
  • Consistently unblocks HBO Max

Cons:

  • Pricey

ExpressVPN is the best HBO Max VPN for good reason, and its unmatched ability to unblock HBO Max is one of them. It has servers in 23 locations in the U.S., all of which unblock HBO Max without a hassle. We put these VPN servers through the wringer, and they got us into HBO Max on the first attempt every time.

In addition, most of the U.S. servers hit near unprotected speeds, regardless of the distance. That’s vital when streaming HBO Max because it automatically adjusts video quality depending on your internet connection and bandwidth. ExpressVPN offers unlimited bandwidth and doesn’t slow down your internet by much to ensure you get the highest video quality. 

Compatible With Most Devices

Beyond that, ExpressVPN works with most devices. You can install it on Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, Linux or router devices. If you love watching movies on a smart TV, worry not. ExpressVPN has apps for smart TV systems like Amazon Fire TV, Fire TV Stick and Android TV. It also has a MediaStreamer for devices that don’t support native VPN apps like Apple TV, Roku and PlayStation.

ExpressVPN streaming
ExpressVPN enables you to stream HBO Max content without interruptions.

That said, ExpressVPN is one of the most expensive VPN services, costing $6.67 per month on the 15-month plan. However, it’s well worth every dollar because it’s the fastest VPN for Youtube, HBO Max, Netflix, BBC iPlayer and other streaming services.

You can get a feel for ExpressVPN risk-free, thanks to its 30-day money-back guarantee. Read our full ExpressVPN review to learn more. 

2. NordVPN

nordvpn us olympics
NordVPN unblocks HBO Max with ease, thanks to its great collection of servers in the U.S.

More details about NordVPN: 

  • Pricing: $3.67 per month for the two-year plan, plus three free months
  • Provider website: nordvpn.com

Pros:

  • Excellent streaming speeds
  • 30-day money-back guarantee
  • Dedicated IP addresses
  • Affordable two-year plan

Cons:

  • Inconsistent speeds when using OpenVPN

Another great HBO Max VPN provider is NordVPN. Though it’s not as fast as ExpressVPN (as you can read in our ExpressVPN vs NordVPN guide), it performs admirably. The NordLynx protocol has significantly improved speeds and mitigated any inconsistency, which has always been the bane of its performance. Whether you’re in Australia or Africa, you can connect to servers in the U.S. and enjoy a steady stream. 

However, you may have to switch between servers to find one that can unblock HBO Max. In that case, you can choose from a pool of servers spread across 15 cities in the U.S. Even better, NordVPN allows you to use dedicated IP addresses, albeit at an extra cost. A dedicated IP is solely yours and is unlikely to get blocked by HBO Max systems. 

Block Ads With NordVPN

Moreover, NordVPN offers unique tools to enhance HBO Max streaming. CyberSec blocks pesky ads that can pop up mid-streaming to ruin your experience. Blocking intrusive ads could also save precious mobile data and improve load speeds; it may also come in handy if you’re watching HBO Max in a country with high mobile data costs or slow internet. 

nordvpn cta
NordVPN is an excellent HBO VPN that offers dedicated IPs for consistent streaming performance.

NordVPN is affordable, setting you back $3.67 per month on the two-year plan (not counting the three free months). For the price, you get all the features mentioned above, six simultaneous connections and stellar encryption to thwart ISP throttling. You can give NordVPN a try worry-free, thanks to its 30-day money-back guarantee. Read our full NordVPN review to learn more. 

3. Surfshark

Surfshark app
Surfshark has the best distribution of servers in the U.S., making it an ideal option for watching HBO Max outside the U.S.

More details about Surfshark:

  • Pricing: $2.49 per month for the two-year plan 
  • Provider website: surfshark.com

Pros:

  • Respectable speeds
  • 30-day money-back guarantee
  • Unlimited simultaneous connections
  • Pocket-friendly

Cons:

  • Inconsistent performance across locations

Our third pick, Surfshark, has the best geographical spread of servers in the U.S. of our top five HBO Max VPNs. It has over 600 servers spread across 23 cities. The problem is, some of these servers, like Tampa and Denver, don’t unblock HBO Max, whereas others — like Latham and Boston — took several attempts to punch through the geo-restrictions. 

However, when you find an optimal server, the rest of the streaming experience is smooth sailing. Surfshark guarantees respectable speeds — fast enough to stream movies and TV shows on HBO Max without buffering. Better still, it offers unlimited bandwidth and solid encryption to hide your traffic from ISPs to prevent connection throttling. 

Connect All Your Devices With Surfshark

To add to this, Surfshark supports unlimited simultaneous connections to protect your entire family. However, keep in mind that HBO Max only allows three simultaneous streams. It also offers the CleanWeb — an ad-blocking tool — that blocks intrusive ads at the source. Besides boosting speeds, CleanWeb comes in handy when you want to save on mobile data. 

Surfshark for streaming
Surfshark unblocks streaming platforms including HBO Max, Netflix, BBC iPlayer and Amazon Prime Video.

Surfshark is another pocket-friendly VPN on our list. It’s cheaper than NordVPN, as it costs you $2.49 per month on the two-year plan. For the price, you get unlimited bandwidth, unlimited simultaneous connections, CleanWeb to block pop-up ads and a large pool of servers in the U.S. Read our full Surfshark review and Surfshark vs ExpressVPN to see how it stacks up against our top pick.

4. Windscribe

ios windscribe connected
You can connect to a free U.S. server to access HBO Max anywhere, anytime.

More details about Windscribe:

  • Pricing: Free; build-a-plan option at $1 per VPN location
  • Provider website: windscribe.com

Pros:

  • Generous free plan
  • 9 free servers in the U.S.
  • Unlimited simultaneous connections

Cons:

  • Three-day money-back guarantee

Windscribe is our best free VPN and is ideal if you want to watch HBO Max outside the U.S. without spending a dime on a VPN. In total, Windscribe has servers in 43 locations in the U.S., including nine free server locations. We tested the free locations, and they got us into HBO Max with ease. 

However, Windscribe is far from the fastest service around, which is why some of its servers take time to load videos. That said, it guarantees consistency and offers unlimited bandwidth. As a result, once the videos load, you enjoy buffering-free streaming on HBO Max. Plus, R.O.B.E.R.T. blocks pop-up ads to further enhance your streaming experience. 

The Best Free VPN

Although the 10GB free plan sounds pleasing to many users, avid HBO Max binge-watchers will find it’s not enough for longer periods of streaming. However, if you want to watch an episode or two of your favorite HBO Max series during your vacation or business trip, the data might just be enough. 

windscribe home page
With Windscribe, you can watch HBO for free on Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, Linux or smart TVs. 

You rarely find a free VPN as capable of unblocking HBO Max as Windscribe. Even though its free plan is generous, you might want to get a paid plan to remove the usage limits and enjoy unrestricted viewing on the HBO Max app.

To that end, you can build your own plan for $1 per location, plus another $1 for unlimited data. You can also get a yearly plan for $4.08 per month. Read our full Windscribe review to learn more. 

5. Private Internet Access

pia streaming
PIA is one of the best VPNs for HBO Max that also works well with other streaming platforms like Netflix and Amazon Prime Video.

More details about PIA:

Pros:

  • Servers in 16 U.S. cities
  • 30-day money-back guarantee
  • Easy to use
  • Dedicated IP addresses

Cons:

  • Doesn’t unblock Hulu & BBC iPlayer

Another VPN that unblocks HBO Max is Private Internet Access (PIA for short). You have 16 U.S. VPN servers to choose from, including two that are optimized for streaming.

The good thing is, both the regular and streaming-optimized servers are adept at unblocking HBO Max. PIA displays the latency for each server to make it easier for you to choose the fastest to watch HBO content. 

Sometimes, HBO Max might block IP addresses if it notices they’re coming from a single server.  PIA offers a dedicated IP address that is exclusively yours, meaning you don’t share it with any other VPN users.

Besides sparing you from the “bad neighbor effect,” it’s unique, meaning the chances of HBO Max knowing that your traffic is from a VPN provider are minimal. 

Consistently Fast VPN Connections

Beyond getting you into HBO Max, PIA offers excellent download speeds to keep you watching movies and TV shows without annoying video lags. Another thing to like about PIA is the consistency of its connections across locations. Whether you’re accessing HBO Max in Mexico or Australia, you should get the same excellent streaming performance. 

PIA for HBO online services
PIA unblocks HBO Max with ease and offers excellent download speeds to sustain uninterrupted viewing.

There are other things to like about Private Internet Access, and its pricing is one of them. Windscribe aside, PIA is the most affordable HBO Max VPN on our list, as it costs $2.19 per month on the two-year plan. You also get a 30-day money-back guarantee just in case you change your mind. Read our full Private Internet Access review to learn more.

How to Watch HBO Max With a VPN

Watching HBO content with a VPN should be a cinch. Let’s demonstrate how the whole process works using ExpressVPN, the best HBO Max VPN. 

  1. Download and Install a VPN App

    Head over to the VPN website and download the native app for your device. Double-click the download file to kick-start the installation and follow along with the installation wizard to complete the process.

    ExpressVPN VPN apps
  2. Connect to a U.S. Server

    Open the VPN app and connect to a VPN server in the U.S. Alternatively, connect to a server in another country where HBO Max is available.

    expressvpn us olympics
  3. Log in to Your HBO Max Account

    Go to the HBO Max website and sign in to your HBO account. The HBO Max system assumes you’re accessing the platform from the U.S., allowing you to access the collection of movies despite being in a blocklisted country. You can also watch movies on the HBO app. 

    Stream HBO content

Can You Access HBO Max With a Free VPN?

Rarely do free VPNs unblock HBO Max. The streaming service is relatively new and its narrow geographic focus means that it’s adept at enforcing geo-restrictions. The majority of free VPNs don’t have a robust encryption system to circumvent HBO Max geoblocking

Another thing is that most worst free VPNs aren’t built with your security in mind. The providers can use the free price tag to lure unsuspecting VPN users. Once they opt in, the providers might gather their data and sell it to third parties to turn a profit.

Even though many free VPNs don’t cut it for streaming HBO Max, few exceptions exist. For example, Windscribe is a free VPN, yet it offers robust security and good speeds — the perfect combination to watch HBO content uninterrupted. 

Final Thoughts

HBO Max is relatively new compared to streaming giants like Netflix, BBC iPlayer and Amazon Prime Video. Despite being a newcomer, it knocks it out of the park with superb movie quality and numerous blockbuster WarnerMedia movies. That bad news is that it’s unavailable in many countries around the world.

Hopefully, you can now pick the best VPN to watch HBO Max outside the U.S. If you’re still undecided, we recommend getting started with ExpressVPN. Thanks to its excellent ability to unblock HBO Max, lightning-fast speeds and unlimited bandwidth, it offers an all-around great streaming performance.

If you’re looking for the most affordable VPNs, Surfshark and PIA meet the criteria. Be sure to read our Surfshark vs PIA guide to learn how the two VPNs compare. We also suggest reading our Surfshark vs Windscribe to see how Surfshark stacks up against the best free VPN.

Have you watched HBO Max outside the U.S.? Which VPN service did you use? Did we miss a service you think deserved a spot in the top five? We’d love to hear about it in the comment section below. As always, thanks for reading. 

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