Just wanted to say thanks… awesome post, informative, and most importantly, accurate. In relation to your comment about not using the gift certificate option for Netflix subscription I thought I would post this link to the support page on unblock-us.com that shows how to use your non-US credit card to set up an account and how to establish a proper postcode to use that will match a US one. Hope it helps: http://support.unblock-us.com/customer/portal/articles/291505

Thanks again,

Mattao on said:
I have been using Netflix in Aus for about a year now. I have set it up for some friends and family recently also with great success. The following are the steps I use:
1. set up a dns for about $5. I used overplay.net but I am sure unblock US does a similar thing. I like overplay as it lets me choose netflix from a number of countries around the world. I know little about computers and found a dns far easier than a vpn (and cheaper).
1a. buy an apple TV. Follow instructions provided by DNS provider to set up WIFI.
2. go onto ebay and purchase a USA itunes card. I have done this a number of times and had no trouble.
3. setup a new itunes account. You will need to set up a new email address to do this assuming you already have an AUS itunes account attached to your email.
4. insert the new itunes account details into the apple TV. Netflix icon will appear.
5. click on netflix icon. Choose to pay using your Itunes credit.
6. what netflix!
I prefer netflix to cable and it costs a fraction of the cost.

Netflix in Australia – the easy way

The great thing about Apple products is that everything works together.  The bad thing is that everything works together.  So not long after I bought my iPad, I realised that I could share my photos on my TV, if only I had an Apple TV.  So of course I bought one of those too.
When I plugged my Apple TV in and it booted up, I noticed that there was a Netflix application – for about 3 seconds, after which it disappeared.  After a bit of research, I discovered that the Apple TV determines which country you are in.  If you are in the USA, it gives you the option to watch Netflix on your Apple TV.  If you don’t live in the USA, then no bananas (or apples as the case may be).  If you don’t live in the USA and you don’t know what Netflix is, then it is a bit hard to find out.  Try going to http://netflix.com and see what you find out.  Netflix checks for your location and only gives you full access to their site if you are in the USA.  Netflix is a streaming TV and Video service that you can subscribe to for about $8.00 per month if you live in the USA.
So long story short, I set about trying to get around the system to get Netflix working on my Apple TV.  I tried many things (including VPN using DD-WRT) and found the following to be the best solution.  If you don’t know what dd-wrt or VPN means, then this is your lucky day – you don’t need to know.  I have been through the pain already for you and can tell you exactly what to do.  How to get Netflix in Australia – the easy way.
Here is the summary of what you need to do.
  1. Make it look like your computer is physically located in the USA.
  2. Sign up for a new Netflix account giving a false USA address.
  3. Get yourself some Netflix credit to pay your bill – you won’t be able to buy this with your account, but you can use the gift certificate work around.
  4. Start watching all the TV and movies you can eat for $13.00 per month (see below for the maths).
Now don’t get me wrong.  I am not a thief or a scam artist.  But frankly, I see no reason why I should pay more for videos or TV just because I live in Australia.   Frankly it is a disgrace.  Technology exists to treat us all as equals.  Why should I pay more?!  Well I am not going to pay more, hence this post.

Make it look like your computer is physically located in the USA

The easiest and best way to do this is go to http://www.unblock-us.com  This service uses a simple masking technique to make it look like your device (computer, Apple TV, iPod etc) is physically based in the USA.  I am not going to provide instructions here – the instructions on the website are easy to follow.  You can sign up for a 7 day free trial – just to make sure everything works properly before you commit.  After that, it is $5.00 per month.
[Edit Aug 2012].  There is another service like unblock-us that is free called tunlr http://tunlr.net  I don’t know what the service is like as I have never used it.  If you are looking to save the $5 per month, then perphaps give it a try.  Personally I am happy to pay $5 per month to support someone that helps break down these global barriers.

Sign up for a new Netflix account giving a false USA address.

Now your PC looks like it is in the USA, go to http://www.netflix.com  and sign up for an account – one month free trial. Make sure you use a false address.  You will need to provide your credit card details.  Make sure you put the correct address for your credit card, even if it is not in the USA.

Get yourself some Netflix credit to pay your bill

Now I was actually in the USA, and I arranged for a US friend to gift me a 1 year membership to Netflix. I have since tested this in Australia and confirm the process does indeed work.   Sign out of Netflix and then click on this link.  http://www.netflix.com/Gift  You will see a button to “buy” under “give a gift”.  Go ahead and buy a 1 year subscription (1 month if you want to be cautious).  When you buy the gift, make sure you use a different email address than you used for your Netflix account.
[EDIT Feb 2012:  I followed the steps above myself and successfully purchased a gift certificate for 1 month.  I have not been able to apply the certificate to my account as yet, because I still have 5 months to run on my account.  I can however confirm that the purchase of gift cards works.]
Once you get your gift code, log back onto your account and redeem your gift by going to http://www.netflix.com/Gift
Now you are all set.  When I did this, Netflix made some micro charges to the credit card registered on my account (a few cents) to verify that my credit card was valid.  I actually got a call from the bank checking to see if it was a fraudulent transaction. I just confirmed with the bank that it was legitimate and I haven’t had any problems since, and Netflix hasn’t cancelled my account as yet.
Of course, make sure you renew your gift certificate before your initial gift expires so that Neflix never has to charge your credit card properly.  Now I don’t know for sure if the gift certificate route is essential, but that is what I did and it worked.  Happy to take feedback from others if this is not required.
And that’s it.  Watch away.  There are lots of TV shows and movies to watch. The list is growing all the time.  There is not much in the way of “new releases” like you get from a video store, but if you are buying anything other than “new releases”, there is plenty of value at Netflix.  As an added benefit, once you set your PC up for Netflix, you can also access hulu.com   Check that out too.
[Edit Feb 2012:  You can use the same approach to create a US based iTunes account.  I purchased iTunes cards online from http://www.pcgamesupply.com  and they were quite good.  They charge a $5 service fee to scratch the card and email you the number.  The benefits are however that you can get a lot better range of movies to watch, and they are cheaper to rent]