If you want to watch Dutch television from outside the EU, you’ll find that your usual websites, such as NPO Start and Uitzending Gemist, aren’t accessible. In this article, we’ll show you how to circumvent these geoblocks — and save yourself some annoyance — by getting a Dutch IP address.
It’s not just entertainment websites that are blocked, either. Government websites can be reached from inside the EU, but if you’re outside it, get ready to answer a dozen security questions that may culminate in a mailed letter that’ll, unhelpfully, be sent to your home address with a security code. The whole “e” part of e-government is still a work in progress, apparently.
Even from inside the EU, you’ll occasionally run into issues. Marktplaats.nl, the Dutch answer to eBay, for instance, is blocked from non-Dutch IP addresses, as are some smaller radio and TV stations. Some banks will also throw you flak if you access them from outside the Netherlands, which is a pain when you’re trying to transfer your rent.
To make life easier for Dutch residents and aficionados of Dutch public television, we’ve put together this quick guide to getting an IP address in the Netherlands. Read on to find out the what, where and how of hiding an IP address.
How to Get a Dutch IP Address
The easiest way to get a Dutch IP address, or one from anywhere else for that matter, is to spoof, or fake, your location via a proxy. Proxies are services, often operating in your browser, that reroute your internet traffic through a different exit point in the internet, making it look like you’re there instead. For recommendations, check out our article on the best free proxies.
That said, proxies have one serious downside: they’re not safe. The connection is rerouted but not secured, making it easy for websites to figure out that you’re trying to trick them. We recommend using a virtual private network to not only get around geoblocks, but also to secure your connection and avoid the prying eyes of marketers and secret agents.
We explain the difference between VPNs and proxies more in our VPN vs. proxy article, but the core is security. Not all VPN services are created equally, though, so we went over our best VPN providers and picked three that’ll help you get a Dutch IP address without the hassle. Let’s take a look at them.
We picked ExpressVPN first because it’s one of the best VPN services. It has several servers in Amsterdam, is the fastest VPN on the market, comes with excellent security and is easy to use, to boot. All you need to do is start it, press the big button in the center of the interface and you’re good to go. Check out our ExpressVPN review for more details on how to use it.
It’s also the best VPN for streaming, so if you ever tire of Dutch public television you can watch U.S. Netflix instead without worrying about proxy errors. The downside to ExpressVPN is its price, which comes in at a whopping $99 per year, making it one of the most expensive VPN services on the market. That said, you get what you pay for, and ExpressVPN is excellent.
If ExpressVPN’s price scares you, considering trying Goose VPN. It has the home-field advantage because its as Dutch as yellow cheese and confusing marijuana laws. Goose VPN has a huge number of servers in the Netherlands, so you’re set to get a Dutch IP address, and it only costs $60 per year. Plus, you can cut that to less than half by opting for the limited plan.
Goose VPN is a pleasure to use and is as secure as any of our top VPN providers, but it has the downside that it can be slow, as we found out when researching our Goose VPN review. That shouldn’t be too much of a problem if you’re accessing Dutch IP addresses from within Europe, but from the rest of the world, you may want to go for our third option.
Last, but not least, is NordVPN. Like our other two recommendations, it offers Dutch servers in several locations around the tiny country, and it has great security, so you can browse knowing you’re safe. It’s also one of the best VPNs for Netflix, so the NPO is almost guaranteed to let you through.
Its speed can be inconsistent, though, so you’ll often have to look for the best server at any given time. That said, switching servers is a breeze with NordVPN thanks to its fine interface and quick switch times. Overall, you could do a lot worse than NordVPN when looking for an IP address in Holland. Read our NordVPN review for more details.
Dangers of Using a Dutch IP Address
Using a different IP address isn’t without risks. Though a VPN will protect you from the worst the internet has to offer, you should keep a few things in mind when using a Dutch IP address.
First, the Netherlands is a hotbed of cybercrime. Scams are many and multiplying, and using a local IP address will open you to some of it. That said, thanks to the anonymity VPNs grant, you should be safe from the worst of it, but we still recommend that you read our online privacy guide to be on the safe side.
Another issue in the Netherlands is the persistent government surveillance, which you can read about in the introduction for our piece on the best VPN for the Netherlands. Again, VPNs should keep you safe, but you may want to keep in mind that your IP address is likely being tracked, even if it’s anonymized. That’s more of a back-of-the-mind thing, but better safe than sorry.
Getting a Dutch IP address is a simple matter of picking a VPN, signing up for it and picking a server in the Netherlands. Not only will you be able to do your online banking and TV watching as if you were at home, but you’ll be doing so more securely than before, without needing to worry about criminals or government agents knowing what you’re up to.
We recommend ExpressVPN, but either of the two others will do fine, as well.
If you’d like to know more about how VPNs work, read our guide on VPN security. Do you have suggestions for good VPN services for Holland or questions on how to hook up a VPN? Let us know in the comments below and, as always, thank you for reading.