Dubai is a fantastic place for tourism. There are a ton of amazing architecture to see and the malls are unlike any other in the world. But there’s just one issue. There are a ton of websites that are blocked in Dubai. Just to name a few, you can’t use WhatsApp, Skype, and not even IMO.
But this doesn’t mean there aren’t ways you can bypass geo-restrictions. In fact, many would recommend you to use a Dubai VPN to unblock these apps. However, most VPNs don’t work in Dubai because they’ve been banned by Etisalat.
Don’t worry though, in this guide, I will recommend some of the best VPN for Dubai that you can use in 2020. But first, let’s have a brief overview of some of the best VPNs to use in Dubai:
- PureVPN – The best service for unblocking with 12 servers in Dubai
- Surfshark – Fastest service with unlimited multi-login feature
- Ivacy – Powerful encryption with an affordable price of $2.25/mo
- ExpressVPN – Powerful VPN to access US Netflix from within Dubai
- CyberGhost – User-friendly VPN that offers 24 servers in Dubai
- NordVPN – Fast and super secure with 20 servers in the UAE
6 Best VPN Services for Dubai
I recommend you to use these best Dubai VPN to unblock apps that are blocked in Dubai. It will keep your online identity anonymous from the government and from ISPs.
1. PureVPN – Best for Dubai
PureVPN is our top choice when it comes to unblocking websites or apps that are restricted by the Dubai government. Apps like WhatsApp or Skype are easily accessible with PureVPN.
PureVPN is currently offering its service in 141 countries worldwide through 2,000+ servers. The price is budget-friendly too and is available for $2.91/mo with 31-days refund policy.
You can avail of a list of interesting features like 256-bit military-grade encryption, 356 days 24/7 customer support and others. If you are present outside Dubai but still want to access Dubai TV even though it is blocked, you will need a Dubai IP address. With PureVPN’s 12 servers located virtually in Dubai, you can access these content with ease.
It doesn’t keep logs nor is it based in the 5 eyes member country. It offers Kodi VPN addon as well as it is one of the top VPN for Firestick. It is the cheapest VPN service so far. Check our best VPN prices page and a detailed PureVPN review 2020 for more insights.
2. Surfshark – Fastest VPN for Dubai
It has 1,000 servers and is available in 60 countries. It has 1 server in Dubai with which you can stream the local news and sports channel from outside Dubai. It doesn’t keep logs and wouldn’t know what you’re surfing online, so the Dubai government won’t know it either.
With a single Surfshark account, you get to connect with unlimited devices. It will unblock any website or any app that is blocked in Dubai. Please read for more information on this service by visiting Surfshark review guide.
3. Ivacy VPN – Best for Torrenting in Dubai
Ivacy has the most powerful encryption in the list of best VPNs for Dubai that I have recommended. It has a Kill Switch feature and Split Tunneling that gives you an extra layer of security.
It is also the VPN that has a good number of servers i.e. 1,000 in 100+ locations that include 1 server in Dubai. This will help you in accessing the local content and websites in Dubai.
With a single account, you can connect to 5 devices at the same time. Its price is also reasonable. It is available at $2.25/mo with a 30-days money-back guarantee.
Now you can unblock any content or app in Dubai and outside of it without any problem. Just connect to Ivacy and browse the internet. Read for more information in our Ivacy review guide.
4. ExpressVPN – Best Dubai VPN for Streaming
If you love fast streaming speeds, you’re going to love ExpressVPN. Although at the price of, ExperessVPN is by no means cheap. However, its performance is unlike any other. That said, ExpressVPN doesn’t offer any servers in Dubai.
But with 3,000 servers in 94 countries, you can access pretty much any foreign from within Dubai. If you wish to access the local content of Dubai, you can use the Egypt server which can give you access to most blocked content.
In terms of performance, ExpressVPN not only offers fast speed for streaming, but also comes packed with powerful features like Network lock, Split tunneling, powerful encryption, and other features.
For more information, check out our exclusive ExpressVPN review.
5. CyberGhost – Secure VPN for Dubai
CyberGhost lets you stream and browse without any limitations in Dubai. It currently offers 6000+ servers and has a presence in 60+ countries. It has 24 servers in Dubai, which means you can access Dubai TV, Sports, and News from outside the country.
It is based in Romania that doesn’t have data-retention laws neither does CyberGhost as it doesn’t store any of your browsing histories.
Its app is available for all major platforms and is user-friendly. The price of this VPN Dubai is reasonable and is available for $2.75/mo with an extraordinary 45-days money-back guarantee.
With a single CyberGhost account you get to connect with 7 multiple devices simultaneously. For more information on this service, please read our CyberGhost review.
6. NordVPN – Top VPN for Dubai
Last but not least, NordVPN is perhaps the best VPN that works in Dubai. It is one of the safest VPN you’ll ever find that can also allow you to stream videos in ultra HD quality.
It offers 20 servers in the United Arab Emirates that can help you unblock pretty much anything you can imagine. You can stream foreign news and sports in Dubai without worrying about geo-blocks. With a single NordVPN account, you can connect 6 devices at the same time.
Price-wise NordVPN is quite affordable. It starts from $3.49/mo for its lifetime deal and even comes with a 30-days money-back guarantee. Best of all, NordVPN is a champ when it comes to speed, reliability, and security. To know more about this service, please read our NordVPN review.
Best Free VPN in Dubai
Free VPNs are good for light usage. Sure such VPNs can help you bypass some geo-blocks, however, in no way can trust them with your privacy. In other words, it’s simply not a good choice to use free VPNs in a country where VPN usage is not necessarily openly permitted.
Another reason why free VPN Dubai are not recommended by many experts is that they keep logs. It will sell your data to third-parties and even authorities for that matter. That being said, there are still a few free VPNs that you can trust. For instance, following VPNs does not store data and are also absolutely free:
Why do you need a VPN in Dubai
A VPN allows you to safeguard your online activities from your ISPs, government, and hackers.
After connecting to a VPN server of your preferred country, you can unblock certain apps or websites that are blocked. You can also stay secure online while doing that.
Here is a list of reasons why you need a VPN for Dubai:
1. Unblocking VoIP services
Telecom companies in the UAE have blocked VoIP services like WhatsApp and Skype. This deprives people in Dubai of a cheap method of communication over long distances.
Fortunately, there is one way that users in UAE can use VoIP services despite the bans.
2. Content Censorship in Dubai
The Dubai government regulates the internet, keeping many sites off-limits to the average user.
The press in UAE is not entirely free, and news reporters often have to bear the frustration of censorship. As such, many users are prevented from having full access to the internet in Dubai.
Getting around these restrictions has become considerably easier in this day and age. A VPN software can bypass censorship, giving you direct access to any website.
3. Government Surveillance
The government of Dubai is monitoring your online activity. Not long ago, human rights activist was sentenced to 10 years imprisonment for spreading hatred against the government in social media.
Consequences like that, you wouldn’t want the Dubai government to spy on your online activity. So get a VPN and mask your IP address for good.
Does the Law Prohibit VPN usage in Dubai?
Not quite. It is not illegal to use a VPN in Dubai but it certainly is illegal to use a VPN for criminal purposes. Criminal purpose includes using VoIP services to evade telecommunication fees. These VoIP services are blocked by the Dubai government and that is why accessing them is more or less considered illegal.
In addition, VPNs can be considered illegal to use in case you’re violating religious principles. Since the UAE is a Muslim majority country, it does enforce the Sharia law which does ban a lot of religiously inappropriate content. But aside from that, there is also a law that governs VPN usage in the UAE. Let’s look at that in a bit of detail, shall we?
Amended Laws in 2016
In 2016, official authorities in UAE revised its cybercrime laws to highlight the application of VPN services and its usage in the country. If you use a fraudulent system IP address through a hidden or third party address to conduct illegal tasks, you may face temporary imprisonment.
In official wording of the law:
“Whoever uses a fraudulent computer network protocol address (IP address) by using a false address or a third-party address by any other means for the purpose of committing a crime or preventing its discovery, shall be punished by temporary imprisonment and a fine of no less than Dhs 500,000 ( USD $136,128.51) and not exceeding Dhs 2,000,000 (USD $544,514.04), or either of these two penalties.”
Now, this doesn’t mean no one in the UAE is using VPNs. In fact, you will come across a ton of people who use VPN for day to day use. As long as you’re using one of the best VPNs for Dubai, you shouldn’t worry about law enforcement agencies poking their nose in your business.
Criteria for choosing the Best VPN Dubai 2020
When selecting the best VPN service for Dubai, you should look out for the following features highlighted below:
Servers: Numbers of servers offered within and outside Dubai to unblock geo-restriction worldwide.
Encryption: Make sure the VPN you’re choosing offers strong encryption. Ideally, you should prefer 256-bit encryption to hide your online presence.
Automatic kill switch: A kill switch feature is an absolute must for VPNs in Dubai. This feature can prevent your data from accidentally leaking.
Money-back guarantee: Last but not least, you should look for a VPN service that offers an extensive refund policy. Any VPN that offers a 30-day money-back guarantee is good to use.
Which websites are blocked in Dubai?
According to the current laws and regulations of the United Arab Emirates, the following content is prohibited to access in the country:
- VoIP calling apps like Skype, Whatsapp, etc
- Gambling websites
- Websites promoting anti-religious content
- Websites dealing with illegal drugs
- Israeli websites
No, using VPN in Dubai is not illegal according to the new law. Having said that, using a VPN for illegal purposes is certainly not allowed. This includes anything that violates local laws and regulations.
Yes, you certainly can. Many people use a VPN to access websites that are blocked and businessmen use it to communicate with people outside the country.
If you wish to access local content only available in Dubai from outside the country, you should ideally connect to servers in Dubai and Abu Dhabi. However, if you wish to access foreign content like US Netflix from within UAE, you should connect to US servers in New York, Atlanta or Chicago.
Yes, IMO is blocked in Dubai. Although IMO is used by millions worldwide, it is still blocked in a lot of Middle Eastern countries like UAE, Oman, Saudi Arabia, and other countries.
Getting a Dubai IP address is easy. Just follow the steps below:
- Select a VPN that offers servers in the United Arab Emirates
- Next, download the VPN software of your choice and install it on your device
- Fire up your VPN app and connect to a server in the UAE
- Finally, check your new Dubai IP address through any tool available online
Since the Dubai government has restricted the use of VoIP services such as WhatsApp and Skype, there is only one way to bypass such restrictions and that is through using premium VPNs.
In this blog, I have recommended some best VPNs for Dubai that can not only unblock geo-restricted apps but also help you access banned websites anonymously.