The best VPNs for gaming in Australia

These VPNs offer player perks for those who need the best performance for online gaming. 

Best VPN for gaming
Hotspot Shield
Hotspot Shield
4.3 out of 5 stars
4.25
Annual plan starts at
AU$11.99
/mo
Servers
1,800+
Countries
80+
Connections
5
Next best VPN for gaming
Cyberghost
CyberGhost VPN
4 out of 5 stars
4
Annual plan starts at
AU$3.19
/mo
Servers
6,000+
Countries
80+
Connections
7
Best for multiple users
Surfshark
Surfshark
4.3 out of 5 stars
4.25
Annual plan starts at
AU$3.39
/mo
Servers
3,200+
Countries
65
Connections
Unlimited
Best VPN all-rounder
Nord VPN
NordVPN
4.8 out of 5 stars
4.75
Annual plan starts at
US$3.29
/mo
Servers
5,200+
Countries
60 +
Connections
6
Easiest VPN setup
ExpressVPN
ExpressVPN
4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5
Annual plan starts at
US$8.32
/mo
Servers
3,000+
Countries
94
Connections
5
John Brandon
Editorial Lead, TV, Streaming, & VPN
Read More
July 03, 2022
5 min read

We are committed to sharing unbiased reviews. Some of the links on our site are from our partners who compensate us. Read our disclosure policies to learn more.

Speed is everything in gaming.

A VPN (Virtual Private Network) client protects your identity and provides many other benefits, but the one downside is that they tend to add extra bandwidth delays. The encryption can increase bandwidth usage by roughly 10-15% in some cases or more. That’s why these VPN providers are a special breed. They provide a lower ping rate than most and scored the highest for download and upload speeds in our various tests. 

Compare the best VPNs for gaming

Brand
Details
Cheapest price
Number of VPN servers
Simultaneous connections
AU$11.99/mth
AU$143.88 1-year plan
1,800+
80+
5
AU$3.19/mth
AU$124.41 3-year plan
6,000+
88
7
AU$3.39/mth
AU$81.36 2-year plan
3,200+
65 countries

Unlimited

US$3.29/mth
US$78.96 2-year plan for new visitors
5,224
60 countries
6
US$8.32/mth
US$99.84 1-year plan
3,000+
94
5

Hotspot Shield

Best VPN for gaming

4.3 out of 5 stars
4.25
Servers
1,800+
Countries
80+
Simultaneous connections
5
Annual plan starts at
AU$11.99
/mo

Pricing and availability only accurate as of last page update.

If you want the fastest VPN for gaming around, Hotspot Shield should be right at the top of your leaderboard.  It's missing a few premium features and a proper zero-logging policy would provide better peace of mind,  but Hotspot Shield is still a premium but speedy VPN app that’s equally beneficial for beginners and more experienced VPN users alike. 

Stock photograph of someone using Proton VPN, one of the best VPNs in Australia

See the best of the best

The truth of the matter is that most of our top VPN picks will be good for gaming. That's because we review and rank VPNs on the qualities that make them good for gaming in the first place. 

CyberGhost

Next best VPN for gaming

4 out of 5 stars
4
Servers
6,000+
Countries
80+
Simultaneous connections
7
Annual plan starts at
AU$3.19
/mo

Pricing and availability only accurate as of last page update.

In our opinion, CyberGhost is the Luigi to Hotspot Shield's All-Star Mario, a competent second player with its own strenghts and weaknesses. While Hotspot Shield has some formidable download speeds, CyberGhost is no slouch and offers some of the best upload speeds we've recorded in our testing. It also has loads of servers spread out across over 80 countries, which means its performance will be more consistent globally than other providers. 

Surfshark

Best VPN for multiple users

4.3 out of 5 stars
4.25
Servers
3,200+
Countries
65
Simultaneous connections
Unlimited
Annual plan starts at
AU$3.39
/mo

Cheapest monthly prices are charged upfront for 24-month plan. Pricing and availability only accurate as of last page update.

Surfshark's upload speeds might not outpace CyberGhost's lap record but it still offers a minimal impact to latency (which is super important for online gaming), great download speeds and, most importantly, unlimited simultaneous connections/devices. So you can have as many people under your roof as you like sharing the same Surfshark account. 

NordVPN

Best VPN all-rounder

4.8 out of 5 stars
4.75
Servers
5,200+
Countries
60 +
Simultaneous connections
6
Annual plan starts at
US$3.29
/mo

Pricing and availability only accurate as of last page update.

The VPNs recommended above scored Gold, Silver and Bronze in this guide thanks to their unique benefits for gamers but for a rounded top-tier VPN for privacy, streaming and gaming, it's still hard to look past our overall top VPN pick, NordVPN. Despite its dominance in the VPN arena, NordVPN is still incredibly easy to use and even features some bespoke tools for work apps, vidoconferencing and streaming. 

ExpressVPN

Easiest VPN setup

4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5
Servers
3,000+
Countries
94
Simultaneous connections
5
Annual plan starts at
US$8.32
/mo

Pricing and availability only accurate as of last page update.

Just because ExpressVPN comes in at fifth place on this list, doesn't mean it isn't worth your consideration. In addition to have servers in more countries than any other VPN on this list, ExpressVPN is also a powerful pick for any players new to the VPN game. The app itself is incredibly easy to use on phones, tablets and computers but there's also a trove of handy guides on the ExpressVPN website for setting up on other devices (such as gaming consoles and smart TVs). 

Methodology

How we choose the best VPNs in Australia

There are a lot of similarities between VPN services, which is why it tends to come down to personal preference and specific use-cases. Pretty much every VPN service we’ve reviewed has an admirable zero-logging policy, which helps reinforce the underlying privacy that VPNs are supposed to provide.

Compared to other subscription services, VPNs don’t tend to cost a lot—and the more time you sign up for, the cheaper the price tends to be (except for Mullvad’s fixed monthly pricing)—but most VPNs tend to be priced for US dollars, which may mean factoring in currency conversions and associated fees.

All of those items listed in the buying guide above are considered as part of our VPN reviews. We start with price and security, then consider whether a VPN offers an actual free version or a practical free trial. Server, country and location counts are important, but the number of simultaneous connections also helps increase the overall value proposition of a VPN. The number of supported devices and how easy it is to use is also factored in, alongside advanced features. We also perform speed tests and streaming tests for popular local and international streaming services, alongside extended everyday functionality tests with a VPN enabled to see if a service interferes with basic software.

Buying tips when researching VPNs

Have a look at our list for what you should consider whether you’re in the market for a new or replacement VPN service.

Basic VPN features to compare:

  • Price: Keep an eye out for US vs UK vs AU currencies.
  • Duration: Paying for longer equates to cheaper monthly costs.
  • Trial: Quality free services are rare; 30-day money-back guarantees are standard.
  • Servers: More servers mean more connectivity options.
  • Countries: Fewer countries means less versatility.
  • Locations: How many places in a country are factored in.
  • Devices: PC, iOS and Android are standard, but more devices means more flexibility.
  • Simultaneous connections: Five is standard, more is better.
  • Logging: Explicit zero-logging policies best protect your privacy.
  • Browser extensions: VPN protection applies on a per-browser basis, rather than the entire PC connection.
  • Encryption: Military-grade AES 256-bit is standard; up to 4096-bit RSA keys add additional security.
  • Support: 24/7 support is best for when things go wrong at odd hours.

There are additional features to consider if you’re wanting a VPN for more than just the basics:

  • Anti-malware: Some VPNs have inbuilt anti-malware protection.
  • Antivirus: Inbuilt antivirus is rare, but a great inclusion (PureVPN).
  • Split tunnelling: Feature that lets you determine specific apps/services covered by the VPN.
  • Smart DNS: A great feature that offers faster streaming albeit not VPN protected.
  • Static IP: Usually costs more but offers a dedicated (rather than changing) IP address.
  • Manual server switching: Automatic server switching is user-friendly, but manual offers greater control.

Frequently asked questions about VPNs

Here are the most commonly asked questions about VPNs in Australia.

VPN is short for ‘virtual private network’.

A VPN creates a secure connection between your device and the internet. Once connected, all of your online data on that device is routed via an encrypted virtual tunnel for as long as you stay connected. Connecting to a VPN changes your wide area network (WAN) IP address, which can either be a local server in Australia or servers from around the world.

Using a VPN creates a secure connection between your device and the internet, which means you’re effectively using the internet connection of an external server. The benefit of this is you’re creating a barrier at a connectivity level between your VPN-connected device and potential threats. This is why it’s advisable to use a VPN whenever connecting to a public WiFi hotspot.

The other benefit is it makes your device appear as though it’s connecting from another country. This can be used to access Netflix libraries in other countries or access streaming services that are geoblocked.

No, it’s not illegal to use a VPN in Australia, and only a handful of countries have regulated or banned the use of VPNs. While there are many legitimate uses for a VPN, they can also be used to circumvent regional copyright regulations, including geoblocking. For example, certain VPNs like NordVPN can be used to access Netflix libraries from other countries from the comfort of your couch in Australia.

VPNs have different prices, as you can see in the VPN price-comparison table at the top of this article. Despite being available in Australia, they tend to be charged in US dollars, so factor that in when paying. Also, the longer the payment term, the cheaper the monthly cost, with discounts sometimes on offer for those willing to pay annual or multi-year amounts. More expensive isn’t always better, though, but you should treat AU$17 as the upper limit for how much you should pay per month.

VPN installation is usually as easy as downloading the software onto a computer and following the installation steps. You’ll need to enter your login details to access the full features of a VPN beyond a trial. Outside of picking the country and/or region you’d like to connect to, configuration is as simple as hitting connect and remembering to hit disconnect when you’re done. Certain VPNs also support iOS and Android, which means you can install the corresponding VPN app on a compatible smartphone or tablet.

If the VPN provider offers an iOS or Android app, you’ll be able to find it on the App Store or Google Play Store, respectively. Install the app, then enter your login credentials. From here, pick a country, region or specific server you’d like to use, then connect. The VPN app will run in the background until it’s disconnected.

A password manager is software that’s designed to store all of your passwords behind a single ‘master password’ in an encrypted environment. That way, you only have to remember one password to access the app, while the password manager takes care of the rest. Password managers are sometimes included with VPN software and are best used to generate new randomised secure passwords.
John Brandon
Written by
John Brandon

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