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Best VPN for UAE

The Best VPN for UAE and Dubai 2024: VoIP Unblocked

With so many VPNs claiming to be the best, finding the best VPNs for the UAE can be tricky. We ran multiple tests and checks to discover the proven best VPN for UAE.

Wisdom SablahSamuel ChapmanJasna Mishevska

Written by Wisdom Sablah (Writer)

Reviewed by Samuel Chapman (Writer, Editor)

Facts checked by Jasna Mishevska (Lead Fact-Checking Editor)

Last Updated: 2024-02-22T12:08:00+00:00

All our content is written fully by humans; we do not publish AI writing. Learn more here.

Key Takeaways: What Is the Best VPN for UAE and Dubai?
  1. ExpressVPN — Best VPN for Dubai and the UAE
  2. NordVPN — Secure VPN ideal for working while in the UAE
  3. Surfshark — Best budget VPN for the UAE and Dubai
  4. Proton VPN — Best free VPN for the UAE and Dubai
  5. CyberGhost — Easy-to-use VPN with the most servers in the UAE

Facts & Expert Analysis

  • Unblock Content & Services: A UAE VPN will help you unblock restricted websites and services, such as gambling and dating sites.
  • Protect Your Connection: It will provide extra protection, which is especially important when using public WiFi or accessing banned services.
  • ExpressVPN, the Best Choice: ExpressVPN is the best choice for the UAE, though NordVPN is a good alternative.
The Best VPN for the UAE

If you’re traveling to the UAE, particularly Dubai, you’re in for a good time thanks to its tourist attractions, including towering skyscrapers, glitzy nightlife, luxury shopping and scenic deserts. However, you’ll find that WhatsApp and other Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) services don’t work there. Thankfully, the best VPN for the UAE can save the day. 

The UAE government has placed harsh restrictions on internet usage and has blocked or limited several websites. These include VoIP services like WhatsApp and Snapchat and many dating sites. With a virtual private network (VPN), you can change your virtual location from the UAE to another country that doesn’t block those websites. 

In addition, having the best VPN provider can help you access geoblocked content from streaming providers like Netflix. It can also encrypt and anonymize your traffic, keeping you safe from snoopers while on public WiFi. Our VPN experts reviewed and tested more than 50 VPNs to compile the best Dubai VPNs. 

  • 11/02/2023

    Updated the article to reflect ExpressVPN’s expansion of server presence from 94 to 105 countries.

  • 02/21/2024 Facts checked

    We rewrote this article with the VPN providers that currently work best for the UAE. 

Cloudwards Editor’s Choice: ExpressVPN

After rigorous tests, our editorial team picked ExpressVPN as the most reliable choice for anyone intending to use the internet in the UAE. ExpressVPN unblocked every VoIP app and website we pit it against. Plus, it suffered no leaks whatsoever. We also found ExpressVPN’s apps to be the most straightforward and user-friendly of the lot. 

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VPN Dubai: How to Choose the Best Service

Many VPN services claim to work well in Dubai, but we separated the wheat from the chaff using the criteria below. You can use this list as a guideline to learn whether a certain VPN provider is worth using in Dubai. 

  • Servers in different locations: We looked for VPNs with a respectable global server collection. VPNs with many servers in Europe and North America scored high marks, since these locations don’t censor the internet like the UAE.
  • Unblocking ability: A good UAE VPN should be able to bypass geoblocks and give you access to VoIP providers and streaming services, including Netflix, Hulu and BBC iPlayer.
  • Solid security features: We chose VPNs with basic and advanced security features, including obfuscation to hide your VPN traffic and double VPN to encrypt your traffic twice. 
  • Fast speeds: We looked for VPNs that maintain at least 80% of unprotected speeds to ensure there are no lags while streaming videos, making video calls or uploading large files in the UAE.

A VPN worth using in the UAE should have basic VPN features, including secure protocols and the latest encryption. We recommend OpenVPN (AES-256 encryption) or WireGuard (ChaCha20 encryption). In addition, the VPN should have a kill switch to prevent data leaks that severs your internet connection if your VPN disconnects.

Split tunneling is also highly useful because it lets you decide which apps go through the VPN tunnel and which ones don’t. For instance, you can set the VPN to only work with Netflix and leave other apps unprotected for better speeds.

Pricing is also important. If you’re on a budget, check out our list of the best free VPN services. Here’s a cheat sheet of features you should consider when choosing a UAE VPN. 

VPN Server Network UAE VPN servers or nearby
Encryption AES-256 or ChaCha20 encryption
VPN Protocols OpenVPN or WireGuard
Privacy No-logs policy, RAM-only servers, privacy audits
Security Features Kill switch, double VPN, obfuscation, blocks malware, trackers and ads
Unblocking Ability VoIP calls, Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Max, Disney+, Hulu, BBC iPlayer
Speeds At least 80% of unprotected speeds

The 5 Best Dubai & UAE VPN Services: Comparison

ExpressVPN is the best VPN for Dubai and the UAE. In the table below, we’ve highlighted its features as well as those of four other excellent Dubai VPN services. 

VPNPriceUAE serversNetflix & VoIPProtocolNo-LogsSpeed*
$6.66 per month (15-months plan)OpenVPN
Lightway
92%
$3.09 per month (two-year plan + three months)OpenVPN
NordLynx
IKEv2
94%
$2.19 per month (two-year plan + three months) OpenVPN
WireGuard
IKEv2
89%
$4.49 per month (two-year plan)OpenVPN
WireGuard
IKEv2
97%
$2.19 per month (two-year plan + two months)OpenVPN
WireGuard
IKEv2
81%
*Percentage value out of 100 for download speeds in the U.S.

In the next section, we’ll explain why each of the VPNs in the table made the list and how they can help you. Let’s start with our top choice, ExpressVPN. 

1. ExpressVPN — Best VPN for UAE and Dubai

get expressvpn
ExpressVPN is an excellent all-around VPN that can help
you access the internet safely inside the UAE.
Download
90 Mbps
Very Fast
Upload
9 Mbps
Very Fast
Latency
7 ms
Very Fast
Source: Cloudwards VPN Speed Test. We test daily. Data from 04/28/24 to 05/26/24
Data for region:

Pros:

  • Unblocks VoIP & streaming
  • Solid security features
  • Fast download speeds

Cons:

  • Expensive annual plan
  • No UAE based servers

We chose ExpressVPN as the best Dubai VPN because it’s the most reliable of all the VPNs we have ever tested. ExpressVPN’s hard-to-match unblocking ability means it can help you access VoIP services like WhatsApp without trouble. Plus, it can unblock all the major streaming providers, including Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Hulu and Disney Plus. 

ExpressVPN is also the most secure VPN in our book. First, all its servers are obfuscated by default, which is essential to evading surveillance in the UAE. It offers high-level AES-256 encryption paired with perfect forward secrecy. T

hat means it changes your encryption keys regularly, making it nigh on impossible for hackers to make sense of your data. This is one of the main reasons why ExpressVPN is the best VPN for public WiFi

ExpressVPN Hands-On Testing

ExpressVPN also tops our best VPNs for beginners list because it’s simple to use. Its apps are easy on the eye, well arranged and intuitive. We found that connecting to a server is a piece of cake. You can either connect to a server automatically by clicking the power button on the home screen or scrolling through the server list.

firestick expressvpn
ExpressVPN has a large power button on the home screen
that enables you to connect to a server quickly.

Notes From the Lab: ExpressVPN Speed Test Results

Download Speed (Higher is better)
Upload Speed (Higher is better)
Latency (Lower is better)
Source: Cloudwards VPN Speed Test. We test daily. Data averaged from 04/28/24 to 05/26/24
Data for region:

ExpressVPN delivered an impressive showing in our VPN speed tests. It kept 90% of our original speeds, making it a good pick for download-related activities like streaming. ExpressVPN’s excellent upload speeds and low latency make it a good choice for content creators, gamers and professionals who want to transfer large files in the UAE. 

Notes From the Lab: ExpressVPN Unblocking Capability Test Results

As you can see in the table below, ExpressVPN unblocks all the major streaming services, and it tops our list of the best VPNs for Netflix. It’s also excellent for lesser-known streaming platforms like Tubi TV and FuboTV. Its high-speed connections mean you don’t have to worry about buffering wheels, even when you watch your favorite movies in HD or 4K. 

PlatformUnblocked?
Netflix
Amazon Prime Video
Max
Disney+
Hulu/ESPN

Notes From the Lab: ExpressVPN Security Analysis

We used IPLeak.net to check whether ExpressVPN leaks any data. Unsurprisingly, ExpressVPN didn’t leak our original IP address when we connected to any of its servers. In addition, none of our original DNS servers showed up, indicating that ExpressVPN can hide your information well. 

expressvpn dns leak test
Our DNS leak tests showed that ExpressVPN doesn’t suffer IP or DNS leaks. 

ExpressVPN offers multiple protocols to provide security for your traffic, including its proprietary protocol. Here’s a summary of ExpressVPN’s protocol roster. 

ProtocolProtocolDevices
OpenVPN AES-256 Windows
MacOS
iOS
Android
Linux
Lightway ChaCha20 Windows
MacOS
iOS
Android
Linux

ExpressVPN also has a “threat manager,” which blocks ads, malware and trackers. In addition, obfuscation is built into every server, so regardless of the server you choose, you can evade detection in the UAE. 

ExpressVPN Pricing & Value

ExpressVPN’s main downside is that its long-term plans are expensive. However, in our experience, ExpressVPN is well worth every penny. The best deal is the one-year plan, which costs $6.66 per month. However, it also has a monthly plan for $12.95 per month and a six-month plan for $9.99 per month. 

If you’re not sure about ExpressVPN, you can take it for a test run using its 30-day money-back guarantee. You can also dig deeper into ExpressVPN in our full-length ExpressVPN review

2. NordVPN — Secure VPN Ideal for Working While in the UAE

NordVPN UAE Server
Connecting to NordVPN’s UAE server is swift and easy.

Pros:

  • 5 servers in the UAE
  • Advanced security features
  • Fast downloads & uploads
  • Meshnet for remote work

Cons:

  • Difficult mobile map UI

NordVPN has five servers in the UAE, making it the prime choice if you need a UAE IP address to access UAE-specific content and streaming services such as StarzPlay Arabia. NordVPN offers numerous advanced security features, including double VPN, which makes your traffic twice as secure, and obfuscated servers, which hide your VPN traffic from prying eyes. 

If you intend to work while in the UAE, we recommend NordVPN. Its dedicated IPs can help you access business servers and avoid blacklists. NordVPN’s Meshnet is great for remote working because it lets you encrypt a remote connection between devices. For instance, Meshnet can connect you and your colleague back home to collaborate on tasks and transfer files.

NordVPN Hands-On Testing

We found NordVPN’s apps easy to navigate. We were particularly impressed with how well organized and easy to find the specialty servers are. Our main gripe with NordVPN’s apps is the interactive server map on the home screen. Unless you’re a geography whiz, it might be hard to find your way around the map. 

nordvpn servers
NordVPN has grouped its specialty servers on its apps, making them easy to find. 

Notes From the Lab: NordVPN Speed Test Results

Download Speed (Higher is better)
Upload Speed (Higher is better)
Latency (Lower is better)
Source: Cloudwards VPN Speed Test. We test daily. Data averaged from 04/28/24 to 05/26/24
Data for region:

NordVPN is the one of the best and fastest VPN at the moment. It boasts exceptional download and upload speeds, making it a good choice for any download- or upload-related activity, including making voice and video calls, posting on social media, streaming and collaborating with team members on cloud services.

Notes From the Lab: NordVPN Unblocking Capability Test Results

NordVPN gets into all the major streaming platforms, as we’ve highlighted in the table below. We streamed our favorite shows on Netflix and Amazon Prime Video buffer-free and got in on the first try. It also unblocks VoIP services like WhatsApp. 

PlatformUnblocked?
Netflix
Amazon Prime Video
Max
Disney+
Hulu/ESPN

Notes From the Lab: NordVPN Security Analysis

We checked whether NordVPN exposes your original DNS address or IP address when you connect to the internet. We are happy to report that NordVPN doesn’t suffer any such leaks, so you can browse without looking over your shoulder. 

nordvpn dnsleak test
Our DNS leak tests proved that NordVPN ensures DNS leak protection. 

NordVPN offers multiple protocols that provide a good mix of speed and security. We’ve summarized them below. 

ProtocolProtocolDevices
OpenVPN AES-256 Windows
MacOS
iOS
Android
Linux
NordLynx ChaCha20 Windows
MacOS
iOS
Android
Linux
IKEv2/IPSec AES-256 Windows
Android
Linux

NordVPN has other useful security features, including threat protection, which blocks malware, trackers and ads. It also has a dark web monitor, which informs you if your information appears on the dark web

NordVPN Pricing & Value

NordVPN’s best deal is the two-year plan, which costs $3.09 per month. This is one of the best-value plans on the market. NordVPN also has a yearly plan for $4.59 per month and a monthly plan that starts at $12.99 per month. A 30-day money-back guarantee covers NordVPN’s plans. 

If you need more information about NordVPN, read our NordVPN review

3. Surfshark — Best Budget VPN for UAE and Dubai

surfshark uae homepage
Surfshark has servers in the UAE to help you browse safely.
Download
92 Mbps
Very Fast
Upload
9 Mbps
Very Fast
Latency
126 ms
Good
Source: Cloudwards VPN Speed Test. We test daily. Data from 04/28/24 to 05/26/24
Data for region:

Pros:

  • Server location in Dubai
  • Unlimited devices
  • Excellent security features

Cons:

  • High latency on nearby servers

Surfshark is a good pick if you want a cheap VPN that doesn’t compromise on quality. Its long-term plans come with huge discounts to help you save money, but it does the job just as well as ExpressVPN and NordVPN. In our tests, Surfshark unblocked all the major streaming and VoIP platforms without any struggle. Plus, you can use Surfshark on unlimited devices. 

Surfshark has a server location in Dubai. This is great if you need a UAE IP address in order to add encryption to your UAE traffic or access UAE content like Emarat TV or Dubai sports channels. Surfshark’s Dubai server comes with “camouflage mode” obfuscation, which hides your VPN use from the government and other third parties.

Surfshark Hands-On Testing

Surfshark is one of the VPNs we often recommend to beginners. Its apps are well organized, sleek and intuitive. The servers are arranged well and you can use the search button to locate your preferred server. Plus, the servers connect almost as soon as you click on them. 

surfshark uae server
Surfshark’s servers are well organized under different
categories to help you find your preferred ones. 

Notes From the Lab: Surfshark Speed Test Results

Download Speed (Higher is better)
Upload Speed (Higher is better)
Latency (Lower is better)
Source: Cloudwards VPN Speed Test. We test daily. Data averaged from 04/28/24 to 05/26/24
Data for region:

Surfshark is a reasonably fast VPN with fast download and upload speeds worldwide. This makes it a fine pick if you’re connecting to servers in countries close to the UAE. Surfshark has particularly reliable upload speeds, meaning it’s a solid choice for uploading files to social media or cloud storage. 

Notes From the Lab: Surfshark Unblocking Capability Test Results

We tested Surfshark against Snachat and WhatsApp in Dubai and were able to get in. Surfshark also gave us access to various geoblocked streaming sites, including Netflix and the others listed in the table below.

PlatformUnblocked?
Netflix
Amazon Prime Video
Max
Disney+
Hulu/ESPN

Notes From the Lab: Surfshark Security Analysis

We connected to various Surfshark servers and checked whether there were any DNS leaks using IPLeak.net. Our results showed that Surfshark doesn’t leak your IP address or internet traffic while connecting to websites. 

surfshark dnsleak test
Based on our tests, Surfshark doesn’t suffer from DNS leaks.

Surfshark also has a suite of protocols to ensure you get the best speed and security when you connect to a server. In the table below, we’ve summarized the protocols, the encryptions they offer and the devices they are available on. 

ProtocolProtocolDevices
OpenVPN ChaCha20 Windows
MacOS
iOS
Android
Linux
NordLynx AES-256 Windows
MacOS
iOS
Android
Linux
IKEv2 AES-256 MacOS
iOS
Android*
* Can be set up manually on Windows and Linux.

Surfshark has many innovative security features, including CleanWeb, which wards off ads, malware and trackers. The dynamic MultiHop feature allows you to select specific double VPN pairs. If you suspect that someone is tracking you online, you can use the rotating IP feature, which changes your IP address at intervals to stay anonymous.

Surfshark Pricing & Value

Surfshark’s two-year plan costs only $2.19 per month and includes four months free. This is one of the cheapest two-year plans in the VPN industry. Surfshark also offers a one-year plan priced at $2.79 per month and a monthly plan for $15.45 per month. Regardless of the plan you purchase, you can request a refund within 30 days. 

If you want to learn more about Surfshark, read our Surfshark review

Surfshark Starter
  • Unlimited GB bandwidth, Unlimited devices, Secure VPN, Ad blocker, Cookie pop-up blocker. Plans renew: $231.75 for one year, $417.15 for two years
  • Unlimited GB
  • Unlimited
  • Yes
Surfshark One
  • Everything in Starter, plus Antivirus protection, Identity protection, Email Breach and Credit Card Alerts, Online Alias Plans renew: $239.25 for one year, $430.65 for two years.
  • Unlimited GB
  • Unlimited
Surfshark One+
  • Everything in One, plus Data removal Plans renew: $269.25 for one year, $404.65 for two years
  • Unlimited GB
  • Unlimited

4. Proton VPN — Best Free VPN for UAE and Dubai

protonvpn homepage
Proton VPN has servers in the UAE that can give you a UAE IP address.

Pros:

  • Free servers in 5 countries
  • Unlimited data on free plan
  • Great for unblocking VoIP

Cons:

  • No free server in the UAE

We recommend Proton VPN if you want a free VPN for Dubai and the UAE. The VPN service offers free servers in five locations: the Netherlands, Japan, Romania, Poland and the U.S. Even though Proton VPN is free, it doesn’t have the limitations of other free VPNs. For example, it offers unlimited data. 

Proton VPN is also great at unblocking VoIP services and streaming providers. If you need a Dubai IP address, Proton VPN has eight servers in Dubai. For privacy-focused users, Proton VPN offers Secure Core servers, which route your traffic through privacy-friendly countries to add an extra layer of security. 

Proton VPN Hands-On Testing

We found Proton VPN’s apps a breeze to install and use. We like that connecting a server is as simple as tapping a button. Plus, Proton VPN displays many details about your connection. For example, it shows you how much data you have downloaded and uploaded, helping you catch unusually high usage and find the source. 

protonvpn android app us
Proton VPN’s Android app provides details about each VPN connection,
including your IP, server name and data.

Notes From the Lab: Proton VPN Speed Test Results

LocationPing
ms
Download
Mbps
Upload
Mbps
Unprotected1919.965.94
🇺🇸 United States
26
19.43
5.55
🇬🇧 United Kingdom
299
18.46
5.45
🇧🇷 Brazil
392
15.77
4.82
🇸🇬 Singapore
540
14.47
3.40
🇿🇦 South Africa
604
13.27
5.40
🇦🇺 Australia
523
17.53
5.09
Average
397
16.49
4.95

Proton VPN performed admirably in our speed tests. It doesn’t quite measure up to speed champions like NordVPN and ExpressVPN, but you can browse websites, stream movies and upload content without hiccups. 

Notes From the Lab: Proton VPN Unblocking Capability Test Results

Proton VPN can unblock all the most popular streaming services, as we’ve summarized below. 

PlatformUnblocked?
Netflix
Amazon Prime Video
Max
Disney+
Hulu/ESPN

Notes From the Lab: Proton VPN Security Analysis

Proton VPN is a secure VPN that doesn’t leak any location identifiers, including your IP address. We also ran DNS leak tests. As you can see in the image below, Proton VPN only reveals its own IP address, not yours. 

protonvpn dns leak test
Our leak tests show that Proton VPN doesn’t leak your original IP address.

Proton VPN provides multiple protocol options, which we touch on in the table below. 

ProtocolProtocolDevices
OpenVPN ChaCha20 Windows
Android
Linux
WireGuard ChaCha20 Windows
MacOS
iOS
Android
Stealth ChaCha20 MacOS
iOS
Android
IKEv2 AES-256 Windows

Proton VPN’s Stealth protocol can help you evade deep packet inspection of your VPN traffic in the UAE. The VPN also has NetShield, which blocks ads, trackers and malicious scripts. 

Proton VPN Pricing & Value

Proton VPN’s cheapest plan is the two-year subscription, which costs $4.49 per month. However, you can get it for a year for $4.99 per month or one month for $9.99. Proton VPN’s plans come with a 30-day money-back guarantee. To learn more about Proton VPN, read our Proton VPN review

Free
  • Unlimited GB
  • 1
  • Yes
Plus
  • 1-year plan renews at $119.88; 2-year plan renews at $239.76
  • Unlimited GB
  • 10
  • Yes

5. CyberGhost — Easy-to-use VPN With the Most Servers in the UAE

cyberghost homepage UAE
CyberGhost has 12 servers in the UAE. 
Download
84 Mbps
Very Fast
Upload
9 Mbps
Very Fast
Latency
26 ms
Very Fast
Source: Cloudwards VPN Speed Test. We test daily. Data from 04/28/24 to 05/26/24
Data for region:

Pros:

  • 12 servers in the UAE
  • Specialized servers
  • 45-day money-back return

Cons:

  • Slow download speeds

We recommend CyberGhost if you’re looking for an easy-to-use UAE VPN. CyberGhost has 12 servers in the UAE — more than any VPN on this list. This provides more flexibility if you want a UAE IP address to watch geoblocked channels like Arabic TV. CyberGhost has intuitive apps for all the major platforms that any newbie can navigate. 

CyberGhost also has a massive server network covering more than 100 countries. Impressively, some of these servers are optimized for specific streaming services, including Netflix U.S., Netflix France, YouTube, Hulu and Crunchyroll. CyberGhost also has optimized servers for playing online games and downloading torrents. 

CyberGhost Hands-On Testing

We used CyberGhost while writing this review, so we can report that it’s designed with beginners in mind. There are helpful short descriptions beneath most of the features. Plus, it has “launch rules,” which lets you decide what CyberGhost does when it launches. For instance, you can set CyberGhost to connect to a U.S. server and open your favorite VoIP app. 

CyberGhost advanced features
CyberGhost’s apps include settings to let you decide
what happens when CyberGhost launches.

Notes From the Lab: CyberGhost Speed Test Results

Download Speed (Higher is better)
Upload Speed (Higher is better)
Latency (Lower is better)
Source: Cloudwards VPN Speed Test. We test daily. Data averaged from 04/28/24 to 05/26/24
Data for region:

CyberGhost isn’t a speed demon like NordVPN and ExpressVPN, but it boasts decent upload speeds. CyberGhost’s download speeds are inconsistent. Connecting a nearby server will give you decent speeds, but faraway servers suffer significant dips. 

Notes From the Lab: CyberGhost Unblocking Capability Test Results

CyberGhost can unblock Netflix and Hulu without issue. However, CyberGhost struggled to unblock Amazon Prime Video in our tests. We’ve summarized our findings in the table below.

PlatformUnblocked?
Netflix
Amazon Prime Video
Max
Disney+
Hulu/ESPN

Notes From the Lab: CyberGhost Security Analysis

As with the other VPNs on this list, we checked whether CyberGhost leaks your IP address when you connect to websites. Fortunately, CyberGhost doesn’t suffer from DNS or IP leaks. 

cyberghost dns leak test
Our leak tests showed that CyberGhost doesn’t leak data regarding your real location.

You can tunnel your internet traffic through various CyberGhost protocols, as shown below.

ProtocolProtocolDevices
OpenVPN AES-256 Windows
Android
Linux
Fire TV
WireGuard ChaCha20 Windows
MacOS
iOS
Android
Linux
Fire TV
IKEv2 AES-256 Windows
MacOS
iOS

It also has a content blocker, which blocks ad and tracker domains, and NoSpy servers, which are great for hiding your traffic from UAE authorities.

CyberGhost Pricing & Value

CyberGhost is a budget-friendly VPN, especially if you subscribe for two years. The two-year plan costs only $2.19 per month. However, if you want a VPN for the short term, you can purchase the six-month plan for $6.99 per month. CyberGhost also has a monthly plan for $12.99 per month. 

A 45-day money-back guarantee covers the two-year and six-month plans, while the monthly plan has a 14-day money-back guarantee. You can discover more about CyberGhost in our CyberGhost review

CyberGhost Plans
  • *The $56.94 price under the 2-year plan is billed yearly after the first two years.
  • Unlimited GB
  • 7
  • Yes

Can You Use a Free Dubai VPN?

We are hesitant to recommend free Dubai VPNs because many free VPNs are known to log and sell your data to third parties. In addition, some of them are slow, suffer from DNS and IP leaks, and can’t unblock streaming platforms. Even worse, some of them don’t work at all — you can’t connect to any server.

That said, Proton VPN, Windscribe and Tunnelbear are all solid free VPNs, though with significant limitations on their free plans.

The Best Free VPN Provider for Dubai & UAE: Proton VPN

If you’re short on funds and need to use a free VPN, we recommend Proton VPN. It offers free servers in five countries, including the U.S. and the Netherlands. Although Proton VPN is free, it doesn’t trade personal user data. Plus, it offers leak protection, nearly impregnable security and excellent unblocking ability. 

Using a VPN in the UAE is legal. However, there are several illegal activities for which you shouldn’t use a VPN to avoid facing sanctions from the UAE government. 

Here are some of the activities that are illegal with or without a VPN:

  • Gambling
  • Watching pornography
  • Visiting dating sites
  • Infringing on intellectual property rights
  • Impersonation and fraud
  • Spreading malware and viruses
  • Accessing LGBT content

Which VPNs Are Banned in the UAE?

The UAE has not explicitly banned or blocked any particular VPN providers. 

How to Use a VPN for Dubai & Bypass VPN Blocks

Setting up a VPN to access websites in Dubai only requires a few steps. We’ll use ExpressVPN, the best VPN for the UAE, to show you how to use a VPN for Dubai. Note that similar steps apply to any other VPN. 

  1. Download and Install a VPN Service

    In this case, we downloaded ExpressVPN’s Windows app. You can find the app for your device on your operating system’s app store or the VPN’s website. After downloading, follow the installation prompts to set it up on your device.

    get expressvpn
  2. Open the VPN App and Connect to a Server

    Launch the VPN app and click the power button on the home screen to connect to a server. Most VPNs have a drop-down server list to help you search for your preferred server. You can also switch various settings by clicking the hamburger button.

    hulu expressvpn connected
  3. Open Your Favorite Websites

    Once you’re connected to an ExpressVPN server, you can browse the internet and unblock your favorite VoIP apps and streaming platforms.

    whatsapp homepage

Why You Need a VPN Connection for UAE

The UAE authorities have banned numerous websites and services, including dating sites and VoIP apps. A VPN changes your virtual location, leading the UAE government to believe you’re not in their country. That way, you can access all websites and platforms as though you were in the U.S. or Europe. Plus, a VPN helps you evade government tracking in the UAE. 

What Online Services and Content are Illegal in UAE?

The following websites are forbidden in the UAE:

  • Many VoIP apps
  • Gambling websites
  • Pornographic/adult sites
  • Anti-government sites
  • Anti-religious sites
  • LGBTQ sites

Final Thoughts

If you live in or are headed to the UAE, you’ll notice that many platforms, including data sites and VoIP apps, don’t work. Thankfully, a VPN can save the day by spoofing your location to a country that allows access to such websites. Based on our tests, ExpressVPN is the best VPN for browsing in the UAE

ExpressVPN offers a massive server network in 105 countries that can unblock any website, VoIP app or streaming platform. It also offers obfuscation on all servers, making it an excellent choice for dodging detection. NordVPN is a secure alternative. Surfshark and CyberGhost are cheaper options, while Proton VPN offers free servers. 

Have you ever visited Dubai or the UAE? Did you struggle to unblock any sites? Which VPN did you use, and what was your experience? Share your thoughts with us in the comments section below. As always, thank you for reading our article. 

FAQ: Best UAE VPN

  • ExpressVPN is the best UAE VPN thanks to its large server network that can help you bypass geoblocks and access many websites. It also has obfuscation, which can help you evade UAE government surveillance.

  • Proton VPN is the best free VPN for the UAE. It offers five free server locations in the Netherlands, Japan, Romania, Poland and the U.S. Plus, it doesn’t limit your data, making it ideal for streaming.

  • NordVPN works in the UAE. It has five servers in the UAE to help you get a UAE IP address. You can also connect to its more than 6,000 servers in 61 countries to change your virtual location.

  • ExpressVPN is the best VPN for making WhatsApp calls in the UAE. Its servers can unblock WhatsApp in the UAE. It offers excellent download and upload speeds to help you enjoy lag-free audio or video calls.

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