FIX: Hulu not working with VPN error (8 foolproof solutions)

Elena Constantinescu
by Elena Constantinescu
VPN Expert & Privacy Advocate
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  • Hulu actively blocks VPN, proxy, and any other tool designed to change your IP address. It does its best to prevent you from accessing Hulu streaming content outside the US.
  • If you have tried and failed using a VPN to get on Hulu by masking your true location, we're here to help. Get started by dropping any free VPN app you might be using. They rarely work.
  • Your VPN's DNS servers could be already blacklisted by Hulu without realizing it. Easily test this by using custom DNS servers, such as Google Public DNS, Cloudflare, or OpenDNS.
  • Other solutions you can try: change your VPN protocol and US server, disable WebRTC in your web browser to prevent IP leaks, reinstall your VPN's TAP drivers, and more.
fix Hulu not working with VPN

Hulu is a leading video-on-demand platform, but it’s only available to US residents. In fact, you need some form of payment issued in the United States in order to sign up for an account.

But it’s frustrating when you travel outside the US and can no longer access your favorite movies and TV series., although you have an active subscription plan.

Unfortunately, Hulu actively blocks any forms of Internet circumvention tools designed to conceal your IP address and change your geo-location, including VPN and proxy.

If you tried using a VPN to watch Hulu but failed, you probably ended up with an error message on your screen.

Discover how to troubleshoot this problem using 8 foolproof solutions.

How can I fix the Hulu VPN error?

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Uninstall any free VPN or proxy tool

don't use free VPN

If you can’t watch Hulu with a VPN or proxy that’s free to use, you shouldn’t be surprised that it doesn’t work.

If Hulu is good enough to detect and block premium VPN services like NordVPN or Surfshark, then it will certainly flag a free tool that uses public IP addresses.

Use a premium VPN with advanced features

It’s tricky to choose a paid VPN service if it doesn’t allow you to test it for free. Luckily, there are a few that come with a 30-day money-back guarantee, so there are no strings attached.

When it comes to a VPN capable of unblocking Hulu, we recommend Private Internet Access.

PIA

It’s wrapped in a user-friendly interface, has VPN servers in 14 US cities, and can be installed on all your devices: Windows, Mac, Linux, Android, iOS, and even routers.

But there’s a catch. Because Hulu block PIA’s DNS servers, you have to set custom DNS servers.

Here’s how you can easily do it on Windows 10:

  1. Sign up for a PIA subscription plan
  2. Download and install PIA for Windows 10
  3. Launch the app and log in with your credentials
  4. Go to Settings > Network
  5. At Name Servers, select Set Custom DNS
  6. Set Primary DNS to 8.8.8.8
  7. Set Secondary DNS to 8.8.4.4set up custom DNS servers in PIA
  8. Click Proceed
  9. Return to the PIA main window and click on VPN server
  10. Select a US location from the list of serversexplore US VPN servers in PIA
  11. Press the big power button to connectPIA is connected to a US VPN server
  12. Try to access Hulu in your web browseruse PIA VPN to unblock Hulu

More about PIA:

  • A no-logging privacy policy
  • Unblock Hulu, Netflix US, HBO Max, Peacock
  • 24/7 live chat support
  • 30-day money-back guarantee (no free trial)
  • Pay with a credit card, PayPal, crypto
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Change your DNS servers

If your VPN service doesn’t allow custom DNS servers like PIA, you can manually adjust DNS settings on your device.

Here’s how you can quickly do this on Windows 10:

  1. Right-click the Start button and select Network Connections
  2. Click Change adapter options
  3. Right-click your Internet connection and pick Properties
  4. Double-click Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4)
  5. Select Use the following DNS server addresses
  6. Set Preferred DNS server to 8.8.8.8
  7. Set Alternate DNS server to 8.8.4.4
  8. Click OK
  9. Make sure the VPN is using the computer’s DNS servers
  10. Connect to a VPN server and try to access Hulu again

We suggest using Google Public DNS because it provides free, publish, speedy, and secure DNS servers that aren’t flagged by Hulu.

You can also try using Cloudflare or OpenDNS.

Change the VPN protocol

set VPN protocols in PIA

The VPN protocol tells your VPN server how it will connect to a remote host by taking into account the encryption and authorization mode. Examples include PPTP, SSTP, and IKEv2.

Each VPN protocol uses specific ports that might get automatically blocked by Hulu. What you can do here is explore the various VPN protocols supported by your virtual private network solution.

We suggest experimenting with OpenVPN or WireGuard, both of which are supported by Private Internet Access (buy here).

And, if your VPN supports obfuscation mode, you can also try using it to disguise your VPN traffic (PIA doesn’t).

Disable WebRTC in your web browser

disable WebRTC using PIA

WebRTC leaks are one of the reasons why your VPN isn’t seemingly hiding your location. It’s not its fault, but your browser’s.

Make sure to disable WebRTC in the web browser you use to watch Hulu. Look up free browser extensions in Chrome Web Store or Firefox Add-ons since there are numerous options.

But first, check the settings of your VPN browser extension (if you have one). For example, Private Internet Access (buy here) has native support for deactivating WebRTC on Firefox, Chrome, and Opera.

Check your VPN app

You should always be using the latest version of your VPN application. Otherwise, you could miss out on important security patches that fix any IP leaks, including on Hulu.

While doing this, it’s also a good idea to reinstall the TAP drivers for your VPN.

In Private Internet Access (buy here), you can do this easily straight from the Help section, so you don’t have to manually change any network settings on your computer.

Turn on the VPN kill switch

The VPN kill switch protects you from IP leaks in case your VPN connection drops unexpectedly.

Without this feature, your computer could expose your true IP address in the time it takes to reconnect to the VPN server, resulting in Hulu connectivity issues.

Once again, we have to go with Private Internet Access (buy here) because it’s intuitive and effective:

How to enable VPN killswitch
  1. Access the PIA settings
  2. Go to Privacy
  3. Set VPN Killswitch to Always

Use split tunneling

Some people don’t want to use a VPN to watch Hulu but for any other activity on their computer, like anonymous torrenting while they’re watching a movie.

If you’re one of these users looking for a simple workaround, there’s nothing better than VPN split tunneling.

It lets you choose which apps will be connected to the VPN server and which of them will continue using the public Internet directly.

Here’s how to set up split tunneling in PIA. Keep in mind that you must be in the US for this to work:

enable PIA split tunneling for Google Chrome
  1. Go to Settings > Network
  2. Turn on Split Tunnel
  3. Click Add Application
  4. Select a web browser that you will use to watch Hulu
  5. Set it to Bypass VPN
  6. Restart PIA and the web browser
  7. Connect to a VPN server

Conclusion

To recap, if you have trouble connecting to Hulu over a VPN on your device, make sure to deactivate any free VPN or proxy tool you might be using since it will likely get flagged.

Instead, use a premium VPN service that can actually bypass the Hulu proxy error. You can also change your DNS servers, use a different VPN protocol, and disable WebRTC leaks in your web browser.

Make sure to update your VPN app to the latest version and reinstall its TAP drivers. Lastly, you can turn on the VPN kill switch or use split tunneling mode.

Did these solutions help you? What other workarounds have you found to successfully connect to Hulu through a VPN? Let us know in the comment section below.

FAQ: Learn more about Hulu connection issues

  • How do I get Hulu to work with ExpressVPN?

If you can’t access Hulu using ExpressVPN, try connecting to another VPN server, changing your VPN protocol, and switching to custom DNS servers.

  • Does NordVPN work with Hulu?

Yes, you can bypass the Hulu proxy error using NordVPN. It has custom DNS settings, obfuscation mode, and Double VPN mode which can help you out.

  • How do I bypass the Hulu VPN block?

To successfully use a VPN on Hulu, consider investing in a premium VPN service instead of opting for free alternatives that won’t work. You can also use different DNS settings if the VPN’s DNS servers get blocked by Hulu.

Editor's Note: This article was originally published in March 2018 and was revamped and updated in January 2021 for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.