Best VPN for Australia

Heidi Finigan | Last Updated:

VPN Streaming Expert

The latest research shows that 79% of the Australian population is connected to the internet. But many of these internet users have become increasingly concerned with the Australian Governments infamous data retention laws. These are a set of regulations which stipulate that all Australian internet service providers (ISP) must retain their users data for a period of two years. For those that that value their online privacy, this is a well-founded concern.

The Australian Government data retention laws were first introduced in 2015, wherein they allocated a 2 year implementation period for Australian ISP’s to become fully compliant. This compliance period ended on 13 April 2017. Since that date, all Australian ISPs have been obliged by the Australian government to collect user metadata such as:

  • your computer IP address.
  • the time of day a user connected to the internet.
  • the type of web browser used.
  • where you are located.
  • the URL of the website you visited.
  • email address details (To, From).

Speed Comparison Test

For this test we used the following devices and methodology to check vpn speeds against the x3 most popular vpn service providers in Australia using a mobile device connected to a standard (Telstra) mobile network. We performed these tests from our office in Darlinghurst, which is an inner city suburb of Sydney (NSW).

  • Device: iPhone 12 Max Pro (mobile device)
  • Connection: Telstra 4G
  • Location: Sydney, Australia
VPN Download Upload Ping
Basline (no vpn) 211 Mbps 22.4 Mbps 21 ms
NordVPN 189 Mbps 14.1 Mbps 25 ms
ExpressVPN 173 Mbps 9.36 Mbps 25 ms
SurfShark 149 Mbps 13.3 Mbps 26 ms

Baseline speed:

We first ran a speed test on our mobile phone (using a Telstra 4G connection) from Sydney, but WITHOUT any vpn connection.

This gave us our baseline speed for mobile, from which we could compare the vpn services.

We observed and recorded that the Baseline download speed on our Mobile device was 210.50 Mbs.

NordVPN speed:

NordVPN was the first of the 3 vpn service providers that we measured.

We observed and recorded that the NordVPN download speed was 189.20 Mbs.

This result equates to a 21.3 Mbps down speed drop using NordVPN. (9.8% reduction in speed)

ExpressVPN speed:

Next up, we ran the same test yet again on our Mobile phone, but this time with the ExpressVPN app connected.

We observed and recorded that the ExpressVPN download speed was 172.90 Mbs.

This result equates to a 37.6 Mbps down speed drop using ExpressVPN. (17.86% reduction in speed)

SurfShark speed:

Our final speed test comparison we conducted was for SurfShark.

We observed and recorded that the SurfShark download speed was 149.14 Mbs.

These results equate to a 61.36 Mbps down speed drop using SurfShark. (29.1% reduction in speed)

Mobile Speed Test Winner:

An important note to consider when reviewing these test results. There will always be some reduction in speed when using a vpn service. This is because of the way that the underlying vpn technology works. When you transmit data (such as what happens when you view a web page) over a vpn connection, your vpn service must encrypt your data when it leaves your computer, and then decrypt your data again when it arrives at the other end of the vpn tunnel. This encryption/decryption process causes some overhead and degradation of speed. However, with a good vpn, this reduction in speed is usually not noticeable to most users.

That being said, there are the summary findings of our Australian VPN Speed Test:

  • NordVPN: 9.8% reduction in speed
  • ExpressVPN: 17.86% reduction in speed
  • SurfShark: 29.1% reduction in speed

NordVPN was clearly the best performer, and is therefore our #1 choice when it comes to vpn connection and download speeds within Australia.

Our Recommendations for Best VPN for Australia

However, there are steps that users can implement to take back charge of their online privacy – with a vpn service being the most obvious choice. Below are our recommendations for the best vpn for Australia:

1. NordVPN

view functionality and pricing info for NordVPN
  • Supported Devices:
Money-back guarantee: 30 Days

As you can see from our speed tests above, NordVPN was the clear winner as having the fastest download speeds among the top 3 vpn service providers currently available in Australia. Fast download speeds are crucial if you are using your vpn to access geo-blocked streaming content from Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Disney Plus, or even BBC iPlayer. Of course, if you are located outside of Australia and you need to connect to an Aussie vpn server in order to access Australian streaming content (Nine Now, ABC iView, Stan, 7Plus, etc) then you’re also going want to ensure that have you have good download speeds. Using NordVPN, you can be assured that your streaming experience will be smooth and will not lag or buffer.

For those more concerned with protecting their online privacy, you will be glad to know that the jurisdiction from where they operate their service is safe and secure. They are based in Panama, which straight away ticks several boxes, as it tells us that they are indeed serious about your internet privacy and maintaining your anonymity whilst online.

As you would expect of a vpn company of this size, they also offer their access to all of the most important functionality that you will need to stay safe, secure and anonymous whilst online. Unlike many ISPs, the good people do not discriminate against Peer2Peer users – they openly confirm that you are welcome to connect to P2P networks via their vpn service, and they will never throttle connection when you do so. They also have a strict No Logs policy, Double Date encryption, an Automatic Kill Switch, as well as a selection of easy to install/use apps (Windows, Mac, Android, iOS) for your nominated device (with up to 6 simultaneous connections!). Still unsure about NordVPN ? – no problem, they offer a full 30-day money back guarantee so you can try them out risk free for yourself.

Australian Servers

They have an impressive total of 35 servers located in Australia. We were really impressed that their website showed each one of these servers along with details of: current usage capacity, as well as vpn protocols supported by each.

NordVPN - Australian server list


All NordVPN plans include the following features:

  • VPN Servers - more than 5500 ultra-fast servers in 60 countries.
  • Kill Switch - to shield your data if your VPN connection drops unexpectedly
  • Double VPN Servers - to add another layer of encryption for extra online security.
  • SmartDNS - to watch shows and movies (home or abroad) with an easy to use setup.
  • Split Tunneling - feature which allows you to choose which apps need VPN protection and which trusted apps don’t.
NordVPN Summer Deal - June 2024: sign-up for a 2 Year Plan, get 3 months free, and save a huge 51% off the regular monthly price! WIth this deal you end up paying a very low $3.99 per month. Bargain! Head over to NordVPN now to check out their fantastic Summer Deal while it's still on!

NordVPN Prices:

Below are the latest NordVPN subscription prices, current as at June 2024:

  • 1 Month: $11.95
  • 1 Year: $4.92 (Save 58%)
  • 2 Years: $3.67 (3 Months Free + Save 69%)

Note: All prices are in USD, and are Per Month.

visit NordVPN

2. ExpressVPN

view functionality and pricing info for ExpressVPN
  • Supported Devices:
Money-back guarantee: 30 Days

Because we take your privacy and security concerns seriously, our review team at VPNCompass will only ever recommended leading vpn service providers with a proven track record. ExpressVPN is one such provider that ticks this box. As one of the largest vpn companies in the world, they have the resources to ensure that they can offer their customers a full featured vpn service.

Security and Privacy are considerations that feature prominently with ExpressVPN. They use 256-bit encryption with SSL to secure each and every vpn connection. Their Logless VPN policy means that your browsing history, traffic data, and DNS queries are never recorded. They do not ever store any information that can be used to identify you. What this means is that if a Government agency ever came knocking on their door to request your browsing history, they would not have any to provide them. For those of us that value their online privacy, this represents peace of mind.

Australian Servers

ExpressVPN has servers that you can connect to in both Sydney and Melbourne. Whilst it may be true that they do not have as many individual servers in Australia as IPVanish, their server speed is something that they pride themselves on. In fact, ExpressVPN offers a Speed Test function in each of their Windows, Mac and Android apps. This app allows users to test the connection speed of each server (whether it be Australian or overseas based) to find the optimum server for your individual location.

ExpressVPN - Australian server list


ExpressVPN continues to be our #1 recommendation for just about all types of vpn uses. They have a huge network of vpn servers around the globe, they have all of the security features to keep you safe online, and their apps are rock-solid and stable.

  • Speed Optmised VPN Servers - gives you a smooth and buffer-free streaming experience.
  • Unblocks Streaming Services - Netflix, Hulu, the BBC and other sites.
  • Jurisdiction: British Virgin Islands (your data is safe from your Government!)
  • 3,000+ Servers / 160 Locations / 94 Countries - for maximum speed, coverage and accessibility where ever you around the world.
  • 30-day Money-Back Guarantee - for ultimate peace of mind. Give them a try and see for yourself.

ExpressVPN Prices:

Below are the latest ExpressVPN subscription prices, current as at June 2024:

  • 1 Month: $12.95
  • 6 Months: $9.99
  • 15 Months: $6.67 (Special Deal: 3 Months Free + Save 49%)

Note: All prices are in USD, and are Per Month.

ExpressVPN Deal - June 2024: sign-up for a 1 Year Plan, and pay only $8.32 per month. That's a whopping 35% Discount off the regular monthly price! Head over to ExpressVPN now to take advantage of this hot deal!

visit ExpressVPN

3. SurfShark

view functionality and pricing info for SurfShark
  • Supported Devices:
Money-back guarantee: 30 Days

SurfShark is also a top-line service provider when it comes to all-round vpn functionality. They offer an unlimited bandwidth policy, which means that they will never throttle your internet connection speed. They are a reputable company who have been around as vpn service providers longer than most of the other players out there. If you are an internet user looking to stay safe online and protect your privacy, then SurfShark is definitely a good choice that we here at VPNCompass could recommend.

Users can connect to their vpn service via a range of apps that are tailor-made for your device of choice including: Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, Windows Phone, Linux, Chromebook, Routers, as well as Fire TV. Also importantly, they have a strong commitment to customer privacy which is implemented via their Zero Logs data collection policy (metadata about your vpn session, including connection details and user activity logs, are never recorded or stored). Furthermore, they offer a full 7-day money back guarantee in case you change your mind.

Australian Servers

Their server presence within Australia is impressive with a total of 59 servers located in Sydney, along with another 2 servers located in Melbourne. Having access to so many Australian based servers means that users are guaranteed excellent connection speeds and throughput, which is vital for any data intensive only activity (such as streaming of movies and tv shows, online gaming, etc).

IPVanish - Australian server list


SurfShark is a well regarded and highly secure vpn service provider. They are best known as being a good all-rounder offer unlimited device connections at an affordable price point. Here are just a few of their key feature offerings:

  • Budget-friendly with a solid set features to protect your online privacy.
  • 3,200 servers in 100 countries for lightning fast connections.
  • Unlimited simultaneous device connections. (PC, Mac, iPad, Tablet, Smart Phone)
  • Can access streaming sites: Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Disney+, HBO Max, BBC iPlayer.

SurfShark Prices:

Below are the latest SurfShark subscription prices, current as at June 2024:

  • 1 Month: $12.95
  • 6 Months: $6.49
  • 24 Months: $2.49 (Save 81%)

Note: All prices are in USD, and are Per Month.

SurfShark Jaw-Dropping Deal - June 2024: sign-up for a 2 Year Plan, get 2 months FREE, and save an enormous 82% off the regular monthly price! That works out to be $2.30 per month USD. How cheap is that! Head over to SurfShark now to check out their fantastic Jaw-Dropping Deal while it's still on!

visit SurfShark

Final Word …

The Australian Government data retention laws that they have imposed on Australian ISP companies are no laughing matter for those that value their internet security and online privacy. But there are practical steps that you can take to circumvent these laws, with a vpn service being the most effective. ExpressVPN and NordVPN are both reputable and well-known companies offering excellent network speed, as well as a comprehensive suite of privacy and security tools for their customers. SurfShark is also another viable alternative for those looking for a cheaper, more basic alternative that still provides a decent range of functionality . If you are looking to protect your online privacy and internet security, these three companies have our seal of approval.

PRIVACY ALERT: Websites you visit can see your current IP Address:

  • Your IP Address:
  • Your Location: Ashburn, US
  • Your Internet Provider:

* Scammers, Governments, and Advertisers can use this information to track and target you.

Our recommended vpn service provider for general all-round internet security and online privacy is NordVPN. It offers an excellent selection of online security and internet privacy features, excellent speed, and the ability to unblock your favorite streaming services (Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, BBC iPlayer).

Visit NordVPN

Categories: Australia , Countries

view further information about NordVPN prices

Our Testing Process

  1. Security
  2. No-Logs Policies
  3. Speed
  4. Streaming
  5. Torrenting
  6. Censorship
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