I’ve found 3 ways to easily set up a VPN with your Chromecast device. I also tested more than 30 VPNs to find the top service for streaming and accessing your local streaming accounts. ExpressVPN is the best choice for Chromecast, with super-fast streaming speeds and an easy-to-configure router setup. Plus, ExpressVPN is backed by a 30-day money-back guarantee, so you can test the service risk-free before subscribing. Try ExpressVPN risk-free today

Quick Guide: 3 Easy Steps to Use a VPN With Chromecast

Get ExpressVPN for Chromecast

How to Use a VPN With Chromecast in January 2023

Here are a few easy ways to set up a VPN with your Chromecast device. Note that you cannot use your Chromecast with your Android or iOS device while using a VPN, either through mirroring or the Google Chrome app.

1. Mirror Your Screen to Chromecast From a VPN-Connected PC

Tip: If you are watching Netflix, you’ll need to Cast Desktop. If you just Cast Tab, it will recognize that it’s Netflix and open the Netflix app, instead of just mirroring the tab and won’t work. This is the easiest way to use a VPN with your older Chromecast dongle, although you can expect a lower stream quality than other methods. You can use this with Google Chrome on your Windows, Mac, Chromebook, or Linux device. Stream on Chromecast with ExpressVPN

2. Set Up a Chromecast VPN by Creating a Virtual Router

You can set up connection sharing using an ethernet cable or by creating a virtual router on your Windows PC or Mac device. An ethernet cable connection will give you faster speeds, but creating a WiFi connection for a virtual router is more convenient. You’ll need to make sure you have a device with a Broadcom-based WiFi adapter, a VPN that supports OpenVPN (like ExpressVPN), and administrative rights on your computer.

Set Up a Virtual Router on Windows

Here are the steps to setting up a virtual router on your Windows device: Start streaming with ExpressVPN

Set Up a Virtual Router on macOS

Setting up a virtual router on Mac is a little more complicated. Before you begin, make sure you choose a VPN that uses the L2TP/IPSec protocol and that you have your VPN’s list of L2TP/IPSec server addresses available — you’ll find this by accessing your VPN account through a browser. Once you’re finished with streaming on your Chromecast, go back to the Network window and click “Disconnect.” 4. Click “Create.” 5. In the Network window, enter these details: a. Configuration: Default b. Server Address: Choose from the addresses your VPN provides c. Account Name: Choose the account name provided by your VPN 6. Click “Authentication Settings” and enter these details: a. Password: Enter the password provided by your VPN b. Shared secret: Enter 12345678 7. Click “OK.” 8. Next, click “Advanced.” Make sure that the “Send all traffic over VPN connection” is on, and click “OK.” 9. Click “Apply.” This will confirm all of your configurations. 10. In the Network window, click “Connect.” This will connect you to the VPN server. 11. Go to System Preferences and click “Sharing,” then “Internet Sharing.” Set the following: a. Share your connection from: Your L2TP/IPsec VPN connection b. To computers using: Wi-Fi 12. Click “WiFi Options.” Configure the following: a. Network Name: Create your network name b. Channel: Default c. Security: WPA2 Personal d. Password: Create a password 13. Click “OK.” Your network is now ready for sharing. 14. Connect to the network using your Chromecast. You’ll need the password you created to access the network. 15. Start streaming! Make sure you stay connected to your VPN while streaming, and simply disconnect when you’re finished. Connect your Chromecast with ExpressVPN

3. Install a VPN on Your WiFi Router for Chromecast

By installing a VPN on your router, you can protect every device that connects to your WiFi — including your Chromecast dongle. However, router setup can be tricky and time-consuming, and it’s more difficult to change your server location too. You may also find that your router isn’t compatible with a VPN setup, in which case I recommend you set up a virtual sharing connection for Chromecast. If you want to install a VPN on your router, I recommend you choose ExpressVPN as it has a router app ready for installation, making the process much more simple. Get ExpressVPN for Chromecast today

The Best VPNs for Chromecast in 2023

1. ExpressVPN — Easy-to-Use Apps Make Streaming on Chromecast Simple

Key Features: ExpressVPN is the top VPN for Chromecast, with intuitive apps that make it easy to use on every device. If you have a new Chromecast with Google TV, you can directly download the ExpressVPN app. For older Chromecast dongles, you can control server connections with ExpressVPN’s dedicated router app — it’s compatible with Asus, Linksys, and Netgear routers. Most VPNs require manual configuration to switch servers on a router, but with ExpressVPN, it’s as easy as switching on your Windows PC or iPhone. I found this made it very convenient to connect with my Chromecast and start streaming instantly. During my tests, I found that ExpressVPN is the fastest VPN service on the market. I was impressed by its speeds across its global network of 3000 servers, as I experienced very little slowdown — on average, my speed reduced by just 18%. My connections with ExpressVPN were fast enough for smooth, lag-free streaming using my Chromecast. Every server uses obfuscation to hide your VPN traffic, making it look like regular traffic. This means ExpressVPN is one of the most effective VPNs for accessing your local streaming account from anywhere. My colleague in the US could connect to Netflix US with ExpressVPN and access personalized, local content.

My team and I found it easy to connect to our streaming accounts with ExpressVPN. We tested many popular streaming services and could access the following: I was pleased to find that ExpressVPN is compatible with all the methods I used to connect my Chromecast to a VPN. Setup was made even easier by ExpressVPN’s dedicated and detailed support site, which provides step-by-step guides with videos and images — I had my Chromecast connected to ExpressVPN in just a few minutes. While ExpressVPN is a more expensive option, I think it’s worth the price for ease of use, fast speeds, and its ability to connect to all of my streaming accounts. Its plans start at $6.67/month for a 1-year + 3 months subscription, which gives the best value — a huge 49% discount from its standard pricing. I recommend you try ExpressVPN with your Chromecast for yourself. You can subscribe with confidence as the service is backed by a 30-day money-back guarantee. When I tested the refund process, I was surprised by how easy it was. It only took a couple of minutes using the 24/7 live chat to approve my request, with no questions asked. I had the full amount back in my account in less than 5 days. Try ExpressVPN risk-free!

2. CyberGhost — Optimized Servers Provide Easy Access to Streaming Services on Chromecast

Key Features: CyberGhost’s optimized servers make it easy to access your favorite streaming services with your Chromecast. These optimized servers are regularly tested by the CyberGhost team to guarantee you can make a connection and avoid any content blocks. The servers are available for a variety of streaming services, and my team and I could easily access the following: During tests, I found CyberGhost’s optimized servers are significantly faster than its regular servers. I could stream my favorite content without lag or buffering, even when connected to distant servers.

While CyberGhost’s standard servers still perform well, you may find you have to connect to several different servers before making a connection to your streaming service. As CyberGhost doesn’t have a router app to use with Chromecast, this would make picking the right server difficult. I recommend configuring your router with an optimized server to ensure a reliable connection. However, CyberGhost is compatible with routers, including models by Netgear, Linksys, and Asus. You’ll have to manually configure your router as there isn’t a native app, but CyberGhost’s detailed step-by-step guides make the process pretty simple. I was able to follow the instructions and have my Chromecast protected by CyberGhost in less than 10 minutes. CyberGhost is also compatible with screen mirroring and setting up a virtual router — and it has a native app for newer Chromecasts with Google TV. Even though router configuration is a little more tricky, CyberGhost’s apps are very easy to use, especially if you set up a virtual router or mirror your screen with Chromecast. Connecting to streaming servers is simple as they are clearly listed in their own menu. I quickly found and connected to my chosen service without any issues. CyberGhost also has dedicated torrenting and gaming servers, ideal for fast P2P file sharing and lag-free online gaming on Call of Duty: Warzone, League of Legends, and more. In terms of price, CyberGhost is an affordable VPN choice with a generous money-back guarantee. Plans start at just $2.19/month for a 2-year + 2 months subscription, with a 45-day money-back guarantee. You can try CyberGhost with your Chromecast risk-free, and getting a refund is easy — I just contacted the 24/7 live chat and an agent processed my request in a couple of minutes. I had my money back in less than a week. Try CyberGhost risk-free!

3. Private Internet Access (PIA) — Customizable Encryption Provides a Speed Boost for Streaming With Chromecast

Key Features: Private Internet Access (PIA) is highly customizable, making it a great choice for more experienced VPN users who want greater control over connections with Chromecast. I was particularly impressed with its encryption options — you can choose between the standard AES-256-bit and AES-128-bit. The lower-level encryption will still keep your data and devices secure and provides a speed boost. This is great if you want to improve your Chromecast stream quality on a slower network. I was pleased to find PIA is compatible with multiple platforms, including routers — it supports some DD-WRT, LEDE, AsusWRT, and pfSense models. Configuration is a little time-consuming, so be prepared to spend 10 minutes or more getting a connection set up for your Chromecast. If you have a newer Chromecast dongle with Google TV, you can directly download the PIA app and connect from there. PIA is reliably fast across its network of more than 35000 servers. During tests, my speeds were consistently fast — even connecting to a server 15,000km away only resulted in a 26% drop from my regular speed. This is fast enough to stream on Chromecast, torrent, and game online without lagging or interruptions. With such a large network, you won’t experience user congestion and high traffic levels in popular locations. I could connect to PIA’s servers easily, with just a couple of seconds between choosing a server and making a connection. My team and I tested PIA with multiple streaming services and found we could access the following: The downside is that PIA can’t always access services like Hulu and BBC iPlayer. If you want to stream these using your Chromecast, I suggest contacting customer support as an agent can recommend the best servers for your connection. For budget-conscious VPN users, PIA’s plans start at $2.19/month for a 2-year + 2 months subscription — great value for a fast and secure VPN. You can try PIA with your Chromecast risk-free, too, as it has a 30-day money-back guarantee. The live chat agent processed my refund request quickly, and I had my money back in 4 days. Try PIA risk-free!

4. PrivateVPN — Small but Robust Network Easily Accesses Global Streaming Services for Chromecast

Key Features: PrivateVPN is excellent at accessing your favorite streaming services, making it a solid choice for use with your Chromecast dongle. During tests, my team and I could easily connect to our local streaming accounts — we tested the following and could stream on them all: I thought that PrivateVPN’s small server network (just 200 servers worldwide) would cause issues when connecting to streaming services. However, PrivateVPN’s robust security means its server network is able to get around online restrictions — it’s one of the top VPNs for use in China, too. When I tested PrivateVPN with my Chromecast, I had to manually configure it with my router. PrivateVPN supports routers with OpenVPN and L2TP and the following models — Asus RT, Synology, DD-WRT, Tomato, Linksys, QNAP, and pfSense. On its support website, PrivateVPN has step-by-step guides that make it easy to set up a router connection. If you’re not technologically minded or need some help, PrivateVPN offers remote customer support. You can have one of PrivateVPN’s support staff help you configure your router setup through a device-sharing app called Teamviewer. When I tried this, the support agent was happy to guide me through the process — this top-tier support isn’t something I’ve seen on other VPNs. In terms of speed, PrivateVPN is much faster on nearby servers and experiences some slowdown over long distances. During tests, I could stream The Boys on my local account without lag, but distant connections meant a longer load time and occasional buffering. If your regular speeds are slower, you may notice a more significant difference in distant connections. For consistent speeds across long distances, you should try ExpressVPN instead.

PrivateVPN is one of the cheapest monthly VPNs, making it a good choice if you’re on a budget — plans start at just $2.00/month for a 3-year subscription. The service is backed by a money-back guarantee, so you can try PrivateVPN with your Chromecast risk-free. If you change your mind, just send an email refund request to customer support. When I did this, I had my money back in 5 days. Try PrivateVPN risk-free!

5. IPVanish — Owns and Operates Entire Server Network for Fast, Reliable Connections With Chromecast

Key Features: IPVanish owns and operates its entire network of 2000+ servers, ensuring top security and speeds for streaming on your Chromecast. By managing its server network, IPVanish is better able to maintain fast connection speeds for streaming.

During my tests, I found IPVanish slowed my speeds by 23% on average. This is fast enough for smooth, lag-free streaming on my Chromecast. For the best speeds, I recommend using the WireGuard protocol and manually choosing your server. IPVanish has a detailed interface that shows the ping (latency) and user load for each server. By picking a server with low ping and load, I always got the best connection for streaming. While IPVanish isn’t directly compatible with a Chromecast dongle, you can configure your router for use with your streaming device. IPVanish can be configured on routers with DD-WRT, Tomato, ASUSWRT, or ASUSWRT-Merlin firmware. To ensure setup is simple, IPVanish has easy-to-follow guides on its website — I configured my router in around 10 minutes. If you have a newer Chromecast, you can download IPVanish directly from Google Play. My team and I tested IPVanish to see how well it can access streaming services, and we were pleasantly surprised. We found we could stream on our local accounts with the following services: The downside to IPVanish is its price — plans start at $3.99/month for a 1 year  subscription. While this isn’t super expensive, I would expect a better range of features for the price. Other VPNs have features like optimized streaming servers, malware protection, and a bigger global network at a lower cost. If you want more features for less, I suggest you try CyberGhost. If you’d still like to try IPVanish’s fast speeds and secure servers with your Chromecast, you can do so risk-free with its 30-day money-back guarantee. If you change your mind, you can cancel your subscription through your account — no need to talk to customer service. I had my money back within an hour. Try IPVanish risk-free!

Comparison Table: 2023’s Best VPNs for Chromecast

How I Tested and Ranked the Best VPNs for Chromecast

I tested more than 30 services to find the best VPNs in 2023 for Chromecast. Each VPN was tested and ranked against the following criteria:

Compatibility with Chromecast: I looked at how each VPN could be configured with Chromecast, including compatibility with routers, ease of setup for virtual routers, and compatibility for screen mirroring. Streaming services: It’s essential your VPN can reliably access your streaming accounts without being blocked by proxy detection technology — ExpressVPN’s server obfuscation is especially good at masking your VPN traffic. Server network: Having servers spread across the globe means you can always find a connection for your streaming accounts. Plus, more servers means less chance of user congestion, keeping speeds fast and uninterrupted. Fast speeds: To keep your streaming smooth and lag-free, your VPN needs to have fast speeds across its server network. I ran multiple speed tests to see which VPNs maintain consistently fast speeds. Strong security: Every VPN uses military-grade encryption, data leak protection, and a kill switch to ensure your data and online activity are protected when you’re connected. Privacy policy: All recommended VPNs have a strict zero-log policy, so none of your streaming data or activity are logged or stored when you’re connected to the VPN servers. Customer support: If you have any questions or connection issues, each VPN has reliable and helpful customer service available for fast responses and quick resolutions.

Stream on Chromecast with ExpressVPN

The Benefits of Using a VPN With Chromecast

Connecting your Chromecast to a VPN server has many benefits, including:

Streaming Your Favorite Content Anywhere

When you travel abroad, it’s not always possible to access your streaming accounts or favorite shows and movies due to online restrictions. However, by connecting your Chromecast to a VPN server in your home country, you can log in to your local streaming accounts and watch content without issue.

Avoiding Network Restrictions

Your Chromecast is small and portable, so you may want to take it with you when you travel. However, sometimes network restrictions mean you can’t connect to streaming services as they are blocked. In countries like China, for example, it’s difficult to connect to Netflix, Disney+, YouTube, and more due to strict online regulations. A service like ExpressVPN has server obfuscation to disguise your VPN traffic and get around restrictions like China’s Great Firewall. This means that even when there are network restrictions in place, you can still catch up on all your favorite content.

Security and Privacy

Whenever you connect to the internet, you’re at risk of being spied on by third-party advertisers, hackers, and even your ISP (Internet Service Provider). Connecting to a VPN before you use your Chromecast keeps your data and online activity secure. A VPN connection encrypts your traffic so no one can spy on your activity, see your true location, or track your data.

Why You Shouldn’t Use a Free VPN With Chromecast

Using a free VPN is a tempting idea, but you simply won’t get the same top-tier service provided by a premium VPN. Free VPNs are extremely limited, with data restrictions, a handful of server connections, and throttled speeds. Even the best free VPNs aren’t a good choice for streaming on your Chromecast — you won’t be able to stream as much as you want and could even find there are no servers available in your desired location. Worse still, some free VPNs compromise your data security by tracking your activity and selling your data to third parties. This could mean you’re targeted by ads or be put at risk of identity theft and fraud. Instead of having a frustrating or potentially dangerous experience with a free service, I recommend you try a premium VPN. A service like CyberGhost has a generous money-back guarantee you can use as a free trial — ideal if you only need a VPN while you’re on vacation. You get up to 45 days to test the service with your Chromecast, and once you’re finished, you can get a full refund.

I tested the refund process myself, and it was easy. I contacted an agent over the 24/7 live chat and requested a cancellation. The agent arranged my refund in less than 5 minutes, and I had my full refund in my account less than a week later.

Why can’t I cast to my Chromecast when using a VPN?

Your Chromecast and casting device need to be on the same network to communicate with each other. Fortunately, this is very easy to fix, as you can either:

Connect both your casting device and your Chromecast to a virtual router so that all devices share the WiFi connection, or Cast from your device to the Chromecast before connecting your VPN, ensuring both devices are using the same network.

When you connect your casting device to a VPN, your IP address changes, so your Chromecast cannot connect — the 2 devices are using different networks. You need to make sure both devices are using the same VPN-protected network to work, so cast to your Chromecast before connecting to your VPN.

Can I use Smart DNS with Chromecast?

No, you can’t use Smart DNS with Chromecast as it’s hardwired to communicate only with Google’s DNS servers. Instead, you can create a virtual router from your Windows PC or Mac if you need to change your IP address to access your local streaming accounts. Once you’ve set up the virtual router, you can connect your Chromecast dongle and use the VPN server through this connection. This provides a higher level of security (Smart DNS connections aren’t encrypted) and creates a stable and reliable connection for streaming.

Can I use a VPN on Chromecast with Google TV?

Yes. If you have a newer Chromecast with Google TV, you can download a dedicated VPN app directly onto your device. For older Chromecasts, you’ll need to set up your VPN and mirror your device, set up a virtual router, or configure your router with your VPN. With a new Chromecast, you can simply download and install your VPN through the Google Play Store.

Will a VPN help me change my Google Play country?

Yes, a VPN can help you change your Google Play country. Using a top-tier VPN, you can connect to a server in a different country, and create a new Google Play account there. This way, you can access apps and content that are available in your new location. Plus, you can use your new Google Play account alongside your existing account.

Can I use a free VPN with Chromecast?

You can, but I don’t recommend it. Even safe free VPNs have limited data, server connections, and speeds, making it difficult to use your Chromecast as much as you want to. Shady, free VPNs are even worse, as they can track and store your activity data to sell for profit. Ultimately, a free VPN will provide you with a disappointing Chromecast experience. Instead, I recommend you try a premium service with a generous money-back guarantee, like CyberGhost. You can use CyberGhost risk-free for up to 45 days and get a full refund if you change your mind. CyberGhost’s 9633+ servers and fast speeds are ideal for streaming, and its unlimited bandwidth means you can stream on Chromecast as much as you want.

Get More From Chromecast With a VPN

You don’t have to miss out on your favorite content when traveling abroad — you can use your Chromecast with a VPN to access your streaming accounts from anywhere. While older Chromecasts aren’t VPN-compatible, there are several ways to use a VPN with your device for safe, secure, and anonymous streaming. During my tests, I found ExpressVPN is the best choice for your Chromecast. Its easy-to-use router app makes it simple to get connected, plus ExpressVPN’s fast speeds are ideal for smooth, lag-free streaming. I suggest you try ExpressVPN with your Chromecast and purchase with confidence — the service is backed by a 30-day money-back guarantee, so you can get a full refund if you change your mind. I requested a refund over the 24/7 live chat and had my money back in just 5 days.

Summary — The Best VPNs for Chromecast in 2023