Best VPN for HBO Max in 2021

Julie Cole
Julie Cole | Contributing Writer
Last updated: October 18, 2021
Best VPN for HBO Max

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The HBO Max streaming platform is currently available in the US only. Therefore, if you’re traveling or living elsewhere, geo-restrictions won’t let you watch your favorite movies and shows. Luckily, you can unblock HBO Max with a reliable Virtual Private Network (VPN) and stream from anywhere in the world.

A reliable VPN will help you access all that HBO Max has to offer!

HBO Max gives unlimited access to critically acclaimed films and fan favorites from HBO classics, Cartoon Network, DC Comics, and more. The collection also includes the latest Warner Bros. blockbusters, available for one month after a theatrical release. This means that in 2021 you’ll see Dune, Matrix, Space Jam: A New Legacy, and The Suicide Squad, among others.

Best VPNs for HBO Max in 2021

Choose any of the Top 3 VPN providers on this list to stream all of that great content on the new platform:

#PROVIDERCATEGORY SCORECATEGORY SCORE
1.
Top VPN for HBO Max
9.7
2.
Still great but cheaper
9.5
3.
Highly affordable HBO Max VPN
9.2

How to watch HBO Max with a VPN

  1. Choose a reliable VPN (we recommend NordVPN, now with 72% off)
  2. Once installed, connect to a VPN server in the US
  3. Create your HBO Max account (US credit card required)
  4. Have fun watching!

Get NordVPN

Why do you need a VPN for watching HBO

You need a VPN to stream HBO and HBO Max because they are currently unavailable outside the US due to geo-blocking. Thankfully, that is about to change soon as the service will become available in a few other countries as well. Yet the number isn’t particularly impressive so chances are you’ll still need a VPN with a relevant country server.

Without a proper VPN, all you will get is this error message: “Not in Service Area or VPN Detected.”

HBO Max error message

Countries where HBO Max is available

HBO recently made an announcement that it will expand the country coverage of the coveted streaming service. The first update is coming on October 26th and will add six countries from Europe. If that’s not enough, HBO Max will add fourteen more the following year.

Available from October 26th, 2021Available in 2022
Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Finland, Spain, AndorraBosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Hungary, Moldova, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia

And while we welcome such updates, it still leaves many viewers without access. Thankfully, it does mean that more VPN servers can be used to access the streaming service. Plus, European viewers will be able to enjoy improved connectivity.

Best VPNs for HBO Max

Here’s the list of top HBO Max VPN providers. All of them have apps for Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, and iOS. Mind you – these aren’t one-trick-ponies by any means.

Each VPN is great for protecting you every day by encrypting all the traffic and hiding your IP address. Even more, you can unblock Netflix and other streaming platforms with these services as well. Finally, a VPN allows safe torrenting and overcomes ISP’s bandwidth throttling.

1. NordVPN – our top VPN for HBO Max

9.5
Top VPN provider
Number of countries covered
Number of countries covered:
60
Number of servers
Number of servers:
5100
Smart DNS
Smart DNS:
Yes (SmartPlay)
Avg. download speed
Avg. download speed:
1,252 Mbit/s
  • Fastest speeds
  • Decent price
  • Excellent for streaming
  • No router app

NordVPN, based in privacy-friendly Panama, is by far our top VPN to get for HBO Max.

It has a great server fleet in 59 countries, ensuring excellent speeds and a reliable connection. Moreover, with its 6 simultaneous connections, and dedicated apps for Android TV and Amazon Fire TV, you’ll have all your streaming needs satisfied.

Whether you are on HBO Max or not, the top-notch security features of NordVPN guarantee that your online activities are anonymous and safe. This service uses military-grade encryption, a fast and secure NordLynx tunneling protocol, and has no leaks at all.

When it comes to purchasing the product, there’s nothing to lose because of the 30-day money-back guarantee. Moreover, the provider easily unblocks other streaming platforms, such as Netflix, as well. Finally, you can count on NordVPN’s 24/7 live chat customer support – the agents are polite, knowledgeable, and quick to reply.

For a deeper investigation of NordVPN, read our NordVPN review.

2. Surfshark – still great but cheaper

9.4
Top VPN provider
Number of countries covered
Number of countries covered:
65
Number of servers
Number of servers:
3200
Smart DNS
Smart DNS:
Yes
Avg. download speed
Avg. download speed:
549 Mbit/s
  • Unlimited simultaneous connections
  • Great performance
  • Supports plenty of platforms and devices
  • No-logs policy not audited yet

Surfshark VPN is the best choice for those who seek a smooth streaming experience for a highly affordable price.

It has plenty of servers in the US, ensuring that you will access HBO Max (and many other content platforms) with no problem. Also, due to Surfshark’s amazing speeds, you are likely to forget you’re using a VPN at all. It works not only on all major platforms but has apps for Android TV and Amazon Fire Stick as well.

The unlimited simultaneous connections offered by Surfshark are great if you want to share the bills with others. HBO Max has shows for people of different ages and tastes, so each person can have their own binge-watch party argument-free. Most importantly, everyone will be protected with Surfshark’s military-grade encryption and robust kill switch.

To put a cherry on top, Surfshark prices are great – especially for a product of such high quality. The same can be said about the customer support – there’s a 24/7 live chat with short waiting times and extensive knowledge base.

For a deeper investigation of Surfshark VPN, read our Surfshark VPN review.

3. PrivateVPN – highly affordable HBO Max VPN

Number of countries covered
Number of countries covered:
62
Number of servers
Number of servers:
150
Smart DNS
Smart DNS:
No
Avg. download speed
Avg. download speed:
115 Mbit/s
  • Very cheap
  • Fast speeds
  • 7-day free trial
  • macOS and iOS apps have fewer features

PrivateVPN is another wallet-friendly VPN for HBO Max. Despite having fewer servers than other VPNs on our list, PrivateVPN offers excellent speeds, as well as a smooth connection – both essential for enjoying HBO Max to the fullest.

Users will also appreciate 6 simultaneous connections, especially if they have several devices to connect to the VPN. Save from the most popular platforms, this provider has apps for Amazon Fire TV and Android TV. And since PrivateVPN’s unblocking prowess doesn’t end with HBO Max, the ability to use it on a number of devices will certainly come in handy.

The price is our favorite thing about PrivateVPN. If that was enough, you can try it for 7 days for free and still get 30 days to change your mind. Finally, should you have any questions, all of them will be promptly answered via 24/7 live chat.

For a deeper investigation of PrivateVPN, read our PrivateVPN review.

4. VyprVPN – security-first provider

Number of countries covered
Number of countries covered:
70
Number of servers
Number of servers:
700
Smart DNS
Smart DNS:
No
Avg. download speed
Avg. download speed:
70 Mbit/s
  • Excellent security
  • App for Android TV
  • Works in China
  • No anonymous payments

VyprVPN is a great service for streaming, offering security, privacy, and good speeds across the globe that transfer into high-quality video streaming. In addition to HBO Max, it unblocks multiple Netflix libraries and other content sites. What’s more, VyprVPN owns all its servers, which adds even more reliability to your connection.

This VPN comes with military-grade encryption, no leaks, and an independently-audited no-logs policy. Thanks to its proprietary Chameleon 2.0 protocol, you’ll be able to unblock Google, Facebook, and streaming websites even in China. On top of that, premium users get a dedicated VyprVPN cloud server.

There are also apps for Android TV and Amazon Fire devices if you want to watch your show on a big screen. Try VyprVPN for yourself without fear – they have a 30-day money-back guarantee.

For a deeper investigation of VyprVPN, read our VyprVPN review.

Number of countries covered
Number of countries covered:
78
Number of servers
Number of servers:
29300
Smart DNS
Smart DNS:
No
  • Inexpensive
  • 10 simultaneous connections
  • Fast speeds
  • Not good in China

Private Internet Access (PIA) is widely recognized as an excellent tool for online privacy, but it’s also a great VPN for streaming. HBO Max is not an exception, in addition to Netflix and other popular video platforms.

PIA has a mind-shattering 29300+ servers worldwide, most of them in the US and Europe. This and the new WireGuard tunneling protocol allows for blazing-fast speeds and makes it one of the best for watching HBO Max in 4K (UHD).

We like that it offers 10 simultaneous connections, as well as the fact that it has browser extensions for Chrome, Firefox, and Opera. This means you can set it up directly on your browser to ensure the VPN doesn’t impact your bandwidth on other apps.

PIA also has military-grade encryption and a court-proven no-logs policy, meaning you’ll stay safe online while watching your beloved HBO Max shows. Finally, a 30-day money-back guarantee gives you a chance to change your mind and choose another provider.

For a deeper investigation of Private Internet Access, read our Private Internet Access review.

Best perks of HBO Max VPNs

NordVPNTop VPN for HBO Max
SurfsharkStill great but cheaper
PrivateVPNHighly affordable HBO Max VPN
VyprVPNSecurity-first VPN for HBO Max
Private Internet AccessPopular cheap HBO Max VPN

How to watch HBO Max on any device

You can watch HBO Max on any device with a VPN. All you have to do is connect to a server in the US and enjoy your beloved movies and shows. Below you will find instructions for desktops, mobile phones, and other devices.

HBO Max on desktop

Watching HBO Max with a VPN is pretty simple. The same instructions apply both to Windows and macOS users.

  1. Download and install your chosen HBO Max VPN.
  2. Connect to a server in the United States.
  3. Log in to HBO Max
  4. Start watching

HBO Max on mobile

If you thought that streaming HBO Max on iOS or Android is harder, you’re wrong. All of our recommended VPNs are available on Google Play Store and Apple’s App Store.

Here’s what you have to do:

  1. Make sure your phone and app store location is set to the US.
  2. Download and install your desired HBO Max VPN.
  3. Connect to a server in the US.
  4. Create a new Google account or Apple ID and set the location to the US.
  5. With your new account, go to the app store and get HBO Max.
  6. Create a new HBO Max account and start watching.

That’s it, you’re almost American now!

HBO Max on Fire TV Stick, Chromecast, and Roku

To watch HBO Max from anywhere on your Amazon Fire device, stick to these instructions:

  1. Get a VPN from our list of best services for HBO Max.
  2. Connect to a VPN server in the United States.
  3. Get the HBO Max app and create a new US account.
  4. You’re not dreaming – start streaming!

The same applies to other streaming devices, such as Chromecast or Roku.

HBO Max on smart TVs

If you have an Android TV, watching HBO Max is really easy. You have to:

  1. Download the Android TV app for your chosen VPN
  2. Launch the VPN client and connect to a US server.
  3. Create a new HBO Max account with the location set to the US.
  4. Start watching

If you have a smart TV that isn’t based on Android, such as Samsung TV or Apple TV, you can still watch HBO Max from your location. Basically, you have three options: using a router, using SmartDNS, or sharing a Windows connection. The latter is beyond the scope of this article, so we’ll concentrate on the first two.

If you have a router:

  1. Depending on your VPN, install or manually configure it on your router. You can find instructions on the provider’s website.
  2. Connect to a VPN server in the US.
  3. Create a new HBO Max account with the location set to the US.
  4. Start watching

If your VPN has Smart DNS:

  1. Visit your provider’s website for instructions on configuring Smart DNS on your device.
  2. Change your TV’s DNS settings.
  3. Restart your smart TV.
  4. Open your HBO Max app and create a new US  account.
  5. Start streaming

Configuring Smart DNS depends on your chosen VPN and TV model, so always follow the instructions on the products’ websites. This also works for game consoles (PS 4 & 5, Xbox 360 & One)

HBO Max on Kodi

If you have an Amazon Fire TV Stick, you can install Kodi on it and stream HBO Max. If not:

  1. Get a VPN with a Kodi app or configure it manually using the provider’s instructions.
  2. Install HBO Max add-on for Kodi
  3. Connect to a VPN server in the US.
  4. Start watching

HBO Max on game consoles (PlayStation and Xbox)

Currently, HBO Max add-on is available on PlayStation 4 & 5 and Xbox 360 & One. VPN’s don’t have apps for game consoles, so the only option is to use the Smart DNS feature. If you’re not in the US and want to stream using your game console, follow this step-by-step guide.

How to watch HBO Max outside of the US

Here’s the quickest way how to stream HBO Max in your country:

  1. Choose NordVPN, now 72% off
  2. Install and connect to a US VPN server
  3. Create your HBO Max account (US credit card required)
  4. Watch from anywhere in the world

Get NordVPN

Watch HBO Max in Canada

If you’re in Canada, you’ll need a VPN to watch HBO Max. That’s because this streaming platform is unavailable outside the US.

Another problem with watching HBO in Canada is payment options. Unless you have a US credit card, your money won’t be accepted. Luckily, HBO doesn’t check the origin of Google Play Store or Apple Play Store payments, meaning you can easily get the app using your smartphone.

Learn how to create a US account of HBO Max and pay with your phone in the sections below.

Watch HBO Max in the UK

HBO Max is unavailable in the UK at the moment. However, Sky Atlantic clients have access to all HBO content. The only problem is that you’ll have to wait before the newest Warner Bros. titles arrive.

If you don’t have that much patience, you can always use a VPN to connect to a server in the US and watch the latest blockbusters as soon as they arrive.

Watch HBO Max in Australia

At the time of writing this article, HBO programming is available in Australia. If you have Foxtel or BINGE, you can watch Godzilla vs Kong, Chernobyl, Game of Thrones, and all upcoming releases. However, the difference in time zones can make things complicated.

What’s more, HBO Max is still unavailable in Australia. While there are plans to launch it in the future, you can access the full library right now. All you have to do is get a reliable VPN service that will allow you to change your location. After connecting to a US server, you’ll be able to watch all your favorite shows and movies in Australia.

How to create an HBO Max account outside the US

HBO Max is available in the US only and doesn’t allow you to create an account from another country. What’s more, HBO only accepts US credit cards. To solve this problem:

  1. Download and install NordVPN, our #1 service for watching HBO Max, on your smartphone.
  2. Connect to a VPN server in the US.
  3. Create a new Apple ID or Google Play Store account.
  4. Download and launch the HBO Max app. Don’t add your payments yet.
  5. Create a new HBO Max account and choose an alternative payment option (PayPal or gift card)

Now you can watch HBO Max from any device, as long as you stay connected to the VPN.

Best free VPN for watching HBO Max outside the US

Many people are looking for a way to stream HBO Max in their country. At the moment, it’s available in the US only, and if you don’t have a VPN, you won’t get past the geo-block. Even more, if you use a free VPN, chances are it won’t unblock HBO Max.

Free VPNs lack the features needed to provide a good streaming experience. Most of the time, their servers are overcrowded, meaning you can expect poor performance and low video quality. Also, most free VPNs collect your data and sell it to third parties, making you the product in this deal.

If you still want to try your luck, we recommend the best free VPN services in 2021.

FAQ

When will HBO Max be available in my country?

HBO Max expands to Europe (Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Finland, Spain, Andorra) from October 26th, 2021. Furthermore, fourteen more European countries (Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Hungary, Moldova, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia) will be added in 2022.

Can I watch HBO Max with a VPN?

Provided that you have a reliable VPN, you can watch HBO Max outside the available countries. You can find our recommended options in the section above. The majority of free services won’t do the trick, though.

Why does HBO Max not work with a VPN?

If you see an error message “Not in a Service Area or VPN detected,” it means that your VPN is unable to unblock HBO Max. You can try switching to another server in the US and check if you’re not using an HBO Max account from another location. If that fails, your best option is to get a reliable streaming VPN.

Can I watch HBO Max for free?

HBO Max is a paid service that no longer has a free trial. However, if you have Hulu, you can add the HBO Max package and stream it for free for one week.

2 comments
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  1. Rick Felix

    But there is no use for this since the credit card MUST be based within the US. I tried and the page loaded, but I can’t register my credit card.


    1. avatar
      Julie Cole Author

      Hello, Rick. Thanks for the comment. You’re right about the credit card. However, you can buy a gift card and redeem it on HBO Now website. Hopefully, this service will expand to other countries in 2021!

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