How To Watch Germany’s ARD And ZDF Abroad

Alternative titles – (How to watch German TV channels abroad) or (How to watch ARD and ZDF outside of Germany)

ARD and ZDF are two of the leading networks in Germany, each running several channels and broadcasting a massive range of content. Due to licensing agreements and other obstacles, both networks are unavailable outside of Germany, restricting access to anyone without a German IP address. This is known as geo-blocking and can lead to disappointment from Germans who are living or traveling abroad and still want access to their favourite TV channels. Others from around the world may also be interested in checking out what ARD and ZDF have to offer from their own country, but are sadly faced with these geo-restrictions. 

Fortunately, there is a solution – get NordVPN! VPNs can hide your IP address and fool websites into thinking you’re accessing them from within Germany. With a VPN you can avoid any geo-blocking and have unrestricted access to any German TV channel, including ARD and ZDF, from anywhere in the world. Whether you are a tourist who enjoys watching these channels and wants to continue watching them from home, or if you’re a German living abroad and you don’t want to miss out on the latest news or sporting events, with a VPN you don’t have to worry about geo-restrictions. This article fully explains how to watch Germany’s ARD and ZDF abroad using a VPN. 

How to watch Germany’s ARD and ZDF abroad

With a VPN, you can say goodbye to geo-restrictions.

How To Watch German TV Channels Abroad Quick Guide

  1. Choose A VPN – Below we have listed all the essential features to consider before making your choice. Many VPN providers offer a 30-day free trial so you can test them out before committing to a paid subscription plan.
  2. Install Client Ar App – Install any necessary software on the device(s) you want to watch ARD and ZDF from. 
  3. Select A German-Based Server – Connect to one of the available servers that are based in Germany. Your IP address will now be masked, with the fresh German one replacing it.
  4. Head to ARD Or ZDF – Navigate to or and you should have unrestricted access to all of their content. Now you can sit back and enjoy some German TV!

What To Look For When Choosing A VPN

Each VPN provider has its own selection of features and uses that will suit various users differently. With streaming geo-blocked content in mind, there are certain features that are especially important. Here are some criteria that you should look out for when choosing a VPN to watch Germany’s ARD and ZDF abroad.

  • Super-Fast Connection Speeds – To avoid lag and buffering, you need a VPN that is known for fast and consistent connection speeds. All VPNs slow down your internet slightly as your data has to travel further to reach the server, but with certain VPNs, the drop in speed is almost completely unnoticeable. For an enjoyable streaming experience with minimal interruptions, fast connection speeds are extremely important. 
  • Large Server Network – A VPN should have a large selection of servers worldwide, with plenty based in Germany. The more servers available, the more likely you’ll be able to unblock restricted content. Obfuscated servers are a great additional option as these specialized servers can bypass VPN-blocking firewalls. This is particularly important if you’re traveling to or living in highly restrictive countries such as Turkey, China, or the UAE, where VPNs are heavily regulated or completely banned.
  • No Bandwidth Or Data Caps – Streaming uses up a whole lot of data and if you’re streaming regularly then you don’t want to be faced with any limitations. Usually, VPN providers put a cap on how much data you can use within a certain time period. However, some VPNs offer unlimited bandwidth and data to users, so you can stream ARD or ZDF as much as you’d like. 
  • High-End Security – Even if you’re just using a VPN to stream geo-blocked content, you’ll still want to be protected from persistent online threats and privacy concerns. When using a VPN, your data travels through an encrypted tunnel that shields it from hackers and third parties. Without a VPN, your sensitive data is vulnerable to attackers and can easily be intercepted, especially if you’re using a public WiFi network. Military-grade encryption is the industry standard but many VPNs offer additional features to add an extra layer of security for users. Extra precautions such as a kill switch and DNS leak protection are incredibly useful in protecting users’ sensitive information, even in the case of an unexpected drop in connection to the server. 
  • Strict Privacy Policies – To ensure your complete privacy and anonymity online, you should opt for a VPN provider with a strict no-logs policy. This means that your browsing activity is never recorded or monitored by your VPN and there is no record kept anywhere of which websites you visit online. Some VPNs have claimed to adopt a no-logs policy when, in fact, they have been selling user data to third parties. To avoid this, make sure the VPN provider you choose has been independently audited, proving that they are being truthful regarding their privacy policies. 
  • User-Friendly App/Client – Whichever device you decide to stream from, you’ll want a client or app that is easy to use and navigate. Many of the top VPNs support all major operating platforms including Windows, macOS, Android, iOS, and Linux. 
  • Multiple Device Support – If you’re a part of a large group or family, or you just own a collection of different devices that you wish to protect and stream from, you’ll need a VPN that supports multiple simultaneous connections. 
  • 24/7 Customer Support – If you run into any issues with your VPN, then you’ll want immediate assistance. A VPN provider with 24/7 customer support can come in handy, especially if you’re in a different time zone. On some provider websites, there are also helpful guides that can assist you in finding a solution to your problem so you can get back to watching German TV channels such as ARD and ZDF as soon as possible!

Best VPN For Watching Germany’s ARD And ZDF Abroad

With all these criteria in mind, we have concluded that the best VPN for watching ARD and ZDF from outside of Germany is NordVPN. This provider is renowned for its exceptional connection speeds and security protocols, making it an ideal VPN for streaming geo-blocked content. 

With thousands of reliable servers worldwide and hundreds based in Germany, NordVPN is perfect for bypassing geo-restrictions and allowing users to stream content from German channels such as ARD and ZDF. This provider also uses a feature called Quick Connect that, when switched on, will connect users to the most optimal server available in their specified country. All these servers offer consistently fast connection speeds, meaning users can experience a seamless streaming experience. 

If you’re in a highly restrictive country that has employed firewalls to block VPNs, then NordVPN’s obfuscated servers will also come in handy. These servers can disguise user activity as normal internet traffic, so they cannot be recognized by firewalls. So even if you’re traveling to or living in a country that has imposed a ban on VPNs, with NordVPN you can still stay protected and anonymous online. 

When it comes to security, NordVPN is one of the best. Their 256-bit AES encryption is paired with extra protocols such as a kill switch, and DNS/IPv6 leak protection, ensuring that their users’ data is protected at all costs. NordVPN also has a strict no-logs policy, declaring that no user data or browsing activity is recorded or monitored. Since this provider is headquartered in Panama, they aren’t subjected to any mandatory data retention laws and therefore have no legal obligation to collect personal data. NordVPN invited an independent auditing firm to audit and confirm their no-logging claim, showing that they really do have nothing to hide. 

With NordVPN, there are no bandwidth or data caps and you can protect and stream from up to 6 devices at once. This gives users a great deal of flexibility when using NordVPN to watch geo-blocked content. 

Finally, NordVPN’s apps are easy to use with a clean and functional interface. If users run into any issues with connecting to a server or any other problems, then they can make use of NordVPN’s 24/7 customer support.

Overall, NordVPN has all the essential features needed to bypass geo-restrictions and allow users to watch content from all around the world. With top-notch security, speedy and reliable servers, and no bandwidth or data caps, there is no better VPN than NordVPN to use for watching German TV channels such as ARD and ZDF.


Why do I need a VPN to watch ARD and ZDF outside Germany?

These channels, like many others, are geo-blocked, meaning that they cannot be accessed from outside of Germany. A VPN is the only way to bypass these restrictions so users can watch these channels from anywhere in the world.

What should I look for when choosing a VPN for streaming geo-blocked content?

The ideal VPN will have a large selection of servers, swift connection speeds, robust security protocols, a strict privacy policy, and no bandwidth/data caps. 

What is the best VPN for watching ARD and ZDF abroad?

NordVPN is the best VPN for watching geo-blocked content. This provider has some of the best security features and fastest server speeds of all top VPNs, making it perfect for streaming ARD and ZDF content. 

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