Pakistan has recently become an active tourist destination with over 1.9 million tourists in 2018, and as of 2021, it has increased by 300%. That is hardly surprising, considering the fascinating landscapes that lie deep in the heart of the country.
However, surrounding all that natural beauty is the elephant in the room that impacts freedom of expression in the country: heavy online censorship and digital surveillance impinging on the privacy and safety of bloggers, activists, and average users.
Using one of the best VPN for Pakistan is of utmost importance in this precarious political and social environment than ever to attain internet freedom and exercise your right to free expression.
In this guide, I will be discussing 6 of the VPNs that will help you hide all your online activities while keeping you anonymous in the eyes of the government and cybercriminals.
6 Best VPN For Pakistan (September 2021 In-Depth Analysis)
The following VPN services are perfectly capable of working in Pakistan to give you unlimited and unrestricted access to different websites and reinforce your online privacy:
1. The Best VPN for Pakistan – ExpressVPN
ExpressVPN is the best VPN for Pakistan. This provider is the ideal solution for circumventing the online censorship and digital surveillance issues in Pakistan.
It is headquartered in the British Virgin Islands (BVI), a country well beyond the clutches of surveillance states known as 5/9/14 Eyes country. In BVI, ISPs and VPN providers are not required to store users’ logs for any time. This is, in fact, the primary reason why this place is considered a safe jurisdiction.
It also offers 3000+ servers in over 94 countries that are more than adequate in granting users access to popular geo-restricted streaming services such as Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, and Disney+.
Not only that, with its servers in Pakistan, many internet users abroad can watch their favourite shows on local channels like A-Plus Entertainment, Aaj Entertainment, Apna Entertainment, ARY Digital, and ARY Zindagi.
ExpressVPN is fully compatible with macOS, Windows, Android, iOS, Firestick, Android TV, Linux, and routers. It supports 5 simultaneous connections with every premium subscription.
I also conducted DNS and IP leak tests while I was in Pakistan. I am pleased to report that I didn’t experience any leak during all of my tests. You can see the screenshot of one of my DNS and IP leak tests.
It is available for $6.67/mo , with a 30-day money-back guarantee. So, you can test the service free for 30 days and cancel anytime.
To know more about this service, please look at our ExpressVPN review.
2. Budget-friendly VPN for Pakistan – Surfshark
Surfshark is a budget-friendly VPN for Pakistan costing only $2.49/mo . Surfshark also supports unlimited connections on a single account, so you can protect as many devices as you want at the same time.
Having 3200+ servers in 65 countries, Surfshark allows access to censored websites and streaming services on the internet that you can’t normally access from Pakistan. While it doesn’t have a server in Pakistan, Pakistani’s can still use its international servers to access streaming services such as Hotstar, ZeeTV, Amazon Prime Video, Sony Liv, and ITV.
People located outside Pakistan can use Surfshark’s server to stay updated with their favourite shows on local Pakistani channels such as Geo TV, Hum News, Geo Tev, PTV News, and many others.
The logging policy of Surfshark is designed with user privacy in mind. Therefore, it doesn’t monitor or store any information that could compromise user privacy. Let’s take a look at one of Surfshark’s DNS and IP leak tests that I took in Pakistan. You can clearly see that my actual IP address and DNS are unexposed.
There is also a 30-day money-back guarantee available, so you can test Surfshark and see if it meets your requirements. Have a look at the Surfshark review for more information.
3. Secure VPN for Pakistan – NordVPN
NordVPN is the most secure VPN for Pakistan. With various security and encryption-focused features, this provider is the top choice for most privacy-conscious users. NordVPN has a network of over 5200+ servers in 60 countries.
Although it doesn’t have any servers in Pakistan, it does cover India, which is neighbouring Pakistan. The service works exceptionally well for unblocking websites like Netflix, BBC iPlayer, BT-Sports, NBC Live, Channel4, and ITV.
Censorship is a serious issue in Pakistan. NordVPN is the perfect response towards censorship and enables internet users to become anonymous so that they don’t have to censor themselves. Also, NordVPN has a zero-logging policy and guarantees no storage of your personal details.
The privacy features of NordVPN, such as DoubleVPN, CyberSec, internet kill switch, and AES-256 encryption, can make you virtually invisible on the web, making it harder for authorities to identify you online.
It was no surprise that a VPN with stature as NordVPN didn’t let my DNS and IP leak the whole time I was present in Pakistan.
You can subscribe to NordVPN for $3.30/mo (VPN Awareness Month - 2 year plan at 72% off + 3 months FREE) with a 30-day money-back guarantee and protect 6 devices on a single account.
Meaning you can protect your Windows, macOS, Android, iOS, Firestick, and Linux simultaneously with a single subscription.
To check out the complete list of features, read our NordVPN review.
4. User-friendly VPN for Pakistan – CyberGhost
CyberGhost is a user-friendly VPN for Pakistan. Its ability to offer separate connection modes for streaming, torrenting and online gaming allows it to offer the most optimized user-friendly experience.
CyberGhost offers modes for streaming, torrenting, and online gaming. That means the application will automatically use the most optimized settings for your chosen purpose.
With 7000+ servers in 90 countries and 12 servers in Karachi, Cyberghost will help you watch local TV shows on H Now Entertainment, PTV Home, PTV Global, PTV National, and Hum Sitaray. I also tried accessing CBS, Vudu, UKTV, Sling TV, NHK, CCTV, and more, and it worked effortlessly.
CyberGhost is located in Romania that doesn’t fall under the EU or 14 eyes intelligence-sharing countries. That means neither any government organization nor any law enforcement agency can request any VPN connection logs from the provider.
CyberGhost is available only for $2.25/mo with 45-days money-back guarantee.
The provider offers 7 simultaneous connections. Now you can stream, download torrents, and play online games on Mac, Windows, Android, iOS, Firestick, Android TV, Linux, and Roku simultaneously.
For more information on this VPN service, check out the CyberGhost review.
5. Best VPN for Torrenting in Pakistan – PIA VPN
Private Internet Access is the best VPN for torrenting in Pakistan. Its zero-log policy, port forwarding, and SOCKS5 compatibility make it an ideal companion for smooth, uninterrupted, and reliable torrenting in Pakistan.
Private Internet Access has 35500+ servers available in 78 countries. Unfortunately, it doesn’t have any servers in Pakistan. However, with its large server network, Pakistani’s can easily get unlimited access to international streaming services such as YouTube TV US, NHK, CCTV, France TV in your TV lounge in Pakistan.
PIA headquarter is located in the U.S, but it still offers a strict no-logs policy and encrypts your internet traffic with AES-256-bit military-grade encryption for rock-solid privacy. It doesn’t retain any information if you download torrent or access any geo-blocked website in Pakistan.
For added security, it also offers IPv6 leak protection, secure DNS, Internet Kill Switch, and DDoS protection to make your data and internet traffic more private on the web.
I decided to test its DNS and IP leak protection mechanism. You can see the test results below, confirming that there wasn’t any DNS or IP leak from within Pakistan.
Download torrent safely and securely on 10 simultaneous devices, for only $2.08/mo with 30-days money-back guarantee.
To read more about this service, please check out the PIA VPN review.
6. Fastest VPN for Pakistan – IPVanish
IPVanish is the fastest VPN for Pakistan. During my testing, I found it to be impressively fast as it delivered an average speed of 94 Mbps on a 100 Mbps connection. The video quality during the streaming never once goes down from 4K Ultra-HD.
The provider has 1900+ servers spread over 75 countries, bypassing all forms of censorship that prevent Pakistani from accessing websites and services. It doesn’t have any servers in Pakistan but with 6 servers in India, expatriates can keep up with their favourite shows on Filmax, City 41, Samaa TV, Abb Takk News, Dunya News, and Express-News.
IPVanish uses leak protection to prevent your DNS and IP from leaking out of the tunnel. The price is a bit expensive and is available for $3.75/mo, with 30-days money-back guarantee.
IPVanish is based in the United States, which isn’t a very safe jurisdiction as the US is a part of the 5, 9, and 14 Eyes alliance. But the logging policy of IPVanish makes things clear. It doesn’t store your logs, so even if the US authorities do get hold of users’ data, it would find nothing but the bandwidth and session time.
To read further about this service, please read our IPVanish review.
Test Methodology: How we tested the best VPN for Pakistan
The VPN industry is composed of thousands of VPN providers. Therefore, to find the best VPN for Pakistan for you, we had to set up certain criteria.
Only the providers that could easily pass the following criteria were included in our list.
- Server Locations: Ensure that your VPN has a wide server network that offers local and international server locations in various countries.
- Encryption: The VPN should only offer state-of-the-art security and 256-bit encryption for the ultimate online privacy, security, anonymity, and data protection. It should also offer a kill switch and IP leak protection.
- Speed: The best VPN will keep the speed trade-off to the minimal and offer a decent speed for reliable and consistent browsing, streaming, and online gaming.
- Simultaneous connections: The provider should be able to work on 5 or more devices simultaneously so you can protect multiple devices at the same time.
- Money-back guarantee: 30-day or more money-back guarantee that works as a safety switch if you opt to quit the service. Top providers should offer at least a month-long refund policy. CyberGhost for instance offers an even more relaxed 45-day money-back guarantee.
3 Reasons Why You Need a VPN in Pakistan
Pakistan faces censorship, privacy, and freedom of speech issues. Thus leading to an increase in VPN usage among the Pakistanis. On that note, here are 3 major reasons why you need a VPN in Pakistan:
1. Circumventing Censorship
Pakistani government took control of the broad censorship, surveillance powers, and restricted online speech. This was done by approving the Prevention of Electronic Crimes Act (PECA) in 2016.
Any website that contains pornographic, blasphemous, anti-Islamic, political, or religious content was blocked. This wide filter is applied to almost any website that the government doesn’t want citizens to see.
While these blocks are temporary and can be removed if the website agrees to remove the offensive material and comply with Pakistan’s laws, they are extremely unpredictable.
It can also cause you to lose access to vital websites and communication services. Many popular websites such as YouTube, WordPress, Facebook, and Twitter have already experienced blocks in the past.
2. Online Privacy
The Prevention of Electronic Crimes Act (PECA), which was approved in 2016, grants Pakistani and international agencies the power to conduct their internet users’ surveillance. It requires internet service providers to retain the user traffic data for at least one year.
To counter such extreme privacy challenges, the VPN providers in this list are fully equipped with state-of-the-art security and encryption techniques to hide your online activities and identity.
3. Freedom of Speech
When it comes to politics and religion, Pakistani law puts freedom of speech at a huge risk. A Pakistani court sentenced Taimoor Raza to death over blasphemous crimes in 2017.
Because the government can apply these laws to any content, it finds it offensive, and even a small mistake can create some minute legal trouble in Pakistan.
A quality VPN just like the ones listed above will ensure that you are always anonymous. The VPN IP will mask your actual location, and encryption will make it impossible to see your browsing activity and personal information.
Online Censorship and Surveillance in Pakistan
Pakistan is a country with strong cultural and traditional sensibilities. A conservative socio-cultural outlook runs deep in Pakistan, the criticism of which has often led people to trouble.
For instance, blasphemy against Islamic beliefs is a crime punishable by death in the country, and the legal process for blasphemy-related doesn’t even require evidence for the act. The testimonies of witnesses are usually enough to pass a sentence.
Blasphemous content on Facebook and YouTube has led to state-wide bans in Pakistan in the past. In fact, YouTube was inaccessible without a VPN in the country for 3 years when a video was posted on YouTube, which upset Muslims’ religious sentiment in Pakistan. A similar sort of censorship and surveillance can be strongly felt in Sri Lanka, that is why residents have already started using affordable VPNs in Sri Lanka.
The Prevention of Electronic Crimes Bill gave sweeping powers to the LEAs and the government to curb criticism. In fact, the bill requires all ISPs in the country to retain user traffic data for a minimum of 1 year.
Surveillance and controls on free speech have also led journalists and bloggers to exercise self-censorship in response to harassment and intimidation from state actors.
Over 50% of Pakistani journalists believe that digital surveillance has enabled intimidation and even life threats to their sources.
The right VPN will mask your IP address, keep no logs of your data, and allow you to unblock censored websites and content with perfect anonymity.
VPN Guides for other countries
- Best VPN for Bahrain
- Best VPN for Saudi Arabia
- Best VPN for Iran
- Best VPN for the UAE
- Best VPN for Romania
- Best VPN for Qatar
FAQs – Best VPN For Pakistan
Let’s see some frequently asked questions regarding the best VPN for Pakistan in 2021.
Yes, it is legal to use a VPN in Pakistan only if used for legal activities. For example, using a VPN service for business purposes is legal but torrent downloading or even accessing pornographic websites and sharing its content is illegal.
You can use a premium VPN provider with servers in Pakistan like ExpressVPN to access Pakistan television online. All you have to do is connect to a server located in Pakistan, and you should be able to access Pakistani media content from anywhere in the world.
ExpressVPN is the fastest VPN to use in Pakistan. With its application’s built-in speed-test tool, you will always be able to identify the fastest server in the network as per your actual location.
Upon connecting to its fastest server, you will be able to stream at the 4K Ultra-HD definition and download torrent files worth 10 GB size within 60 minutes. That is what we experienced during our extensive testing.
ExpressVPN is the best VPN for smartphones in Pakistan. Its smartphone’s application features include advanced leak protection, multilingual interface, auto-connect on untrusted Wi-Fi, network protection (kill switch), and easy-to-use straightforward user interface.
With a Google Play Store rating of 4.4/5.0, ExpressVPN ranks at the top in our best VPNs for Android list.
ExpressVPN is the best VPN for online gaming in Pakistan. Usually, the purpose of using a VPN in an online game is to lower the ping, introduce stability, and enhance the gaming experience. All of this can easily be achieved with ExpressVPN’s 3,000+ server network that is spread globally.
No, it would be best if you didn’t use a free VPN in Pakistan. Free VPNs offer an insufficient amount of server locations and connection bandwidth that can hardly allow you to stream, download, play online, or even browse smoothly.
Moreover, free VPN providers are known for selling their user’s personal data and connection logs to various third-party advertisement agencies. Cybersecurity experts advise using a safe and secure premium VPN for securing your online activities.
When you’re confronted with online censorship restrictions, such as those you’ll face in Pakistan, a VPN is your best bet for maintaining your internet freedom.
The best VPN for Pakistan, like ExpressVPN – offers the best way to access restricted online content at high speed, keep your online activities safe from observation and monitoring, and enhance your overall internet experience.
ExpressVPN also offers a “12 months + 3 months free“ plan, which also comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee.