One of the perks of betting, is the ability to do it from anywhere in the world. Almost.
I’ve done livebetting on a little paradise island in the Gulf of Thailand, researched bets in rural Indonesia and watched football in Dubai International Airport. But it has never been without issues.
The silly fact is that sportsbetting is illegal in many countries and that streaming services have a lot of restrictions.
This means some individual bookmakers are blocking all IP’s from those countries. But often, it also means the internet service providers in the countries block all traffic.
So if you’re heading off on a holiday to any of these countries, you might have trouble accessing your bookmakers:
Bahamas, Bangladesh, Belarus, Bhutan, Brunei, Cayman, China, Costa Rica, Cuba, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Maldives, Puerto Rico, Ukraine, Singapore, South-Korea, some stats in the US and most Middle Eastern countries.
Getting around the blocks
Luckily, there’s a big market for people who wants to hide their ass on the internet. They do that by using a VPN.
VPN is short for Virtual Private Network and basically helps you send and receive data through another computer. So while you might sit behind The Great Firewall in China, you can make it appear as you’re actually in Sweden or Germany, simply by using a VPN to reroute your traffic and thereby getting a local IP.
Previously it was a bit cumbersome to set up a VPN, but nowadays they’ve become very user-friendly and easy to set up.
Location is key
It’s important to pick a VPN-provider with servers in your own country. And preferably several. Most of the websites that you are going to be accessing are based at home and the connection will be faster if your VPN is closer to the website server.
Having a home-country IP also means that no alarm bells will be ringing at any websites. It will look like you’re still sipping ice coffee at your home desk.
For obvious reasons, you want the fastest possible VPN. There’s nothing worse than missing out on a good odds, just because it takes 8 minutes to load the bookmaker website.
There’s a lot of public and free VPNs on the market, but they’re usually congested and not worth your time.
The ability to use your home country streaming services is another advantage of getting yourself a VPN.
Because of license restrictions, especially on sports, most streaming services have blocked all access outside your home country. With a VPN you can access these streams – but the VPN has to be fast in order for it to be working.
I’ve tested several VPNs while traveling. Several of them has been seriously crappy when it comes to speed and reliability, especially the free ones. I’ve realised it’s worth my money to buy a proper VPN service.
So let me introduce you to ExpressVPN. I’ve used them the past few years and they’ve been fast and reliable all along. They also have a sweet interface and an iOS app, which has been vital when doing mobile betting.
I’ve been able to stream Netflix, Viaplay, HBO and many other services from anywhere in the world without any lag.
Please note: Gambling legislation can change quicker than the weather, so the list is ever changing. Simon runs a good blog with up-to-date specifics on each country.