Internet restrictions in Sri Lanka are very closely tied with the prevailing law and order situation in the country. Social media often gets the brunt of state-wide blockage in the country based on hate speech and disinformation inciting communal violence.
Though it is hard to argue that law and order sometimes demand strict censorship measures, it can also cause a great deal of inconvenience for people whose businesses and communications depend on social media and the internet.
This is where you need a VPN. We tested 150+ VPNs to label one of them as the best VPN for Sri Lanka. Out of all the testing we did, ExpressVPN performed the best.
5 Best VPNs for Sri Lanka (October 2021 In-Depth Analysis)
To find out the top VPNs for Sri Lanka, we tested 150+ VPNs on the basis of their servers, security protocols, encryption, logging policies, unblocking capabilities, and more. Out of these, we shortlisted the 5 best VPNs which we’re going to discuss in detail below. Our top pick amongst them is ExpressVPN.
1. Best VPN for Sri Lanka – ExpressVPN
ExpressVPN is the best VPN for Sri Lanka. It boasts a strong network of 3000+ servers in 94 countries including 1 Sri Lankan server, all of which share remarkable consistency in speed and performance.
With its server located in Sri Lanka, you can stream local TV channels such as ART Television, Channel C, Colombo TV, and Dream TV if you live outside the country.
If you reside in Sri Lanka and want to access all popular streaming services in the world, then you can also utilize ExpressVPN’s wide server network to stream international content such as Netflix, Hulu, BBC iPlayer, Amazon Prime Video, and many more.
ExpressVPN offers an average speed of 78 Mbps on a 100 Mbps connection so you never have to worry about any lags and buffers while streaming. You can check out its speeds in our ExpressVPN speed test.
Apart from that, you can set up a single ExpressVPN subscription on 5 devices simultaneously. Meaning, you can protect almost all the devices in your home at a single time.
ExpressVPN offers lightweight apps for most of the popular devices that users own. These include macOS, Windows, Android, iOS, Firestick, Roku, Linux, routers, etc.
What’s more, is that this VPN also offers highly efficient security and privacy to keep your identity safe and hidden on the web. You can use ExpressVPN’s kill switch so your internet is disconnected if your VPN connection drops.
It also offers an AES 256-bit encryption, no-logging policy, and an exclusive MediaStreamer feature that lets you bypass geo-restrictions without altering your own IP.
While ExpressVPN claims to protect your IP, we tested this to confirm it by connection to ExpressVPN’s Italian server:
As you can see, ExpressVPN did not leak our actual IP. This ensures that the VPN is completely safe to use in Sri Lanka.
ExpressVPN offers a 3-month free subscription on its annual plan for users to enjoy. Nonetheless, if you find the service lower than your expectations, you can always demand a refund within 30 days., but that won’t be the case with this top-notch VPN service.
To learn more about this service, check out our ExpressVPN review.
2. Budget-friendly VPN for Sri Lanka – Surfshark
Surfshark is a budget-friendly VPN for Sri Lanka. It offers 3200+ servers in 65 countries. While none of its servers are located in Sri Lanka, the closest VPN location you’ll get is in India. This is not a big problem since you will mostly be needing the overseas servers anyway if you want to bypass geo-restrictions and social media censorship in Sri Lanka.
This VPN is also beneficial if you want to unblock international geo-restricted content such as Netflix, Hulu, Disney+, BT-Sports, ITV, Channel4 from Sri Lanka. While this VPN offers an average speed of 69 Mbps on a 100 Mbps connection, it is not as fast as ExpressVPN. Nonetheless, it is still plenty fast. You can check out its speeds further in our Surfshark speed tests.
The thing that gives Surfshark dominance over the rest of the providers is its ability to support an unlimited number of devices on a single subscription.
When it comes to compatibility, then you can set up Surfshark on your macOS, Windows, Android, iOS, Android TV box, Firestick, Roku, Chromecast, PlayStation, Xbox, Linux, Router, and Smart TV anytime you like.
This VPN is another no-logs VPN for privacy-seeking online users. It offers several features such as CleanWeb and MultiHop, which enable you to stay protected against data harvesters and cybercriminals. It also offers a DNS leak protection feature which we tested by connecting to an Australian server and got the following results:
Finally, the cost $2.49/mo , 30-day money-back guarantee, and unlimited simultaneous connections make Surfshark a valuable tool to have for better privacy and internet access in Sri Lanka.
Read our Surfshark review for more details.
3. Secure VPN for Sri Lanka – NordVPN
NordVPN is the most secure VPN for Sri Lanka. This provider offers a vast network of 5200+ servers spread across 60 countries. However, it does not offer any Sri Lankan servers.
NordVPN’s offshore servers will give Sri Lankan citizens many options to mask their identity and bypass censored streaming content such as Hulu, Netflix, Hotstar, CBS, CCTN, NHK, myTV, Spotify, and YouTube TV.
With an average speed of 66 Mbps on a 100 Mbps connection, this VPN gives off great speeds for streaming, unblocking geo-restricted sites, and torrenting.
You can easily set up NordVPN on your devices such as Windows, macOS, iOS, Android, Firestick, Linux, routers, Android TV, and many others. It offers 6 simultaneous connections to users who want to enjoy this VPN on multiple devices.
NordVPN refrains from any logging of their customer’s data. From a privacy standpoint, this is very beneficial for Sri Lankans looking to escape government surveillance. It is also equipped with innovative features like Onion over VPN, CyberSec, and DoubleVPN for that extra privacy.
NordVPN also offers a DNS leak protection feature to users which we tested by connecting to a US server. You can see that NordVPN did not leak our actual server and can be trusted as a secure VPN:
All features aside, if you care more about your privacy than all other things, then NordVPN is a great option for you. This VPN comes at a price of $3.30/mo (VPN Awareness Month - 2 year plan at 72% off + 3 months FREE) with a 30-day money-back guarantee which is simply too hard to resist.
Learn more about this VPN in our NordVPN review.
4. User-friendly VPN for Sri Lanka – CyberGhost
CyberGhost is one of the most reliable VPNs for Sri Lanka. This VPN has 7000+ servers in 90 countries, including 14 housed within Colombo, Sri Lanka.
The Sri Lankan servers will give you faster speeds and access to blocked websites such as Nethra TV, Sarana TV, Siyatha TV, and Swarga TV from outside Sri Lanka.
For users within the country, CyberGhost offers the benefit of streaming multiple services like Netflix, BBC, Hulu, Channel4, ITV, etc. This VPN offers an average speed of 62 Mbps on a 100 Mbps connection which is comparatively less than ExpressVPN but does a decent job in bypassing geo-restrictions.
This VPN offers the most user-friendly apps for almost all major devices including iOS, Android, Roku, Kodi, Fire Stick, Mac, Windows, and more along with 7 multi-logins for users to enjoy.
CyberGhost has a strict no-logging policy. It also offers a kill switch, split tunnelling, anonymous browsing, OpenVPN protocol, and AES 256-bit encryption.
Let’s not forget that like all other VPNs above, CyberGhost also passed its DNS leak test which we checked by connecting to its Albanian server:
As such, whether it is better privacy you are seeking in Sri Lanka or uninhibited online access, CyberGhost is a decent VPN to have especially considering its $2.25/mo and 45-day money-back guarantee. If you don’t find the service extremely useful for yourself, then you can always cancel your CyberGhost subscription.
Please find out more in our detailed CyberGhost review.
5. Best Torrenting VPN for Sri Lanka – PIA
Private Internet Access (PIA) is the best torrenting VPN for Sri Lanka. It consists of 35500+ servers in 78 countries, and 11 of these are located in Sri Lanka. This VPN offers multiple P2P-optimized servers across the globe so users can torrent safely in Sri Lanka.
Sri Lankan expatriates can keep up with their local shows on TV channels such as Vasantham TV, TNL TV, Swarga TV, The Buddhist, Ridee TV, and many others, thanks to PIA’s server Sri Lankan servers.
The service works efficiently for unblocking geo-restricted streaming services like Netflix, ESPN+, Sony Liv, ABC, UKTV, and many more within Sri Lanka. So fans of online binge streaming will find PIA a trusty VPN to have.
PIA’s torrent-friendly servers are capable of delivering an average speed of 62 Mbps on a 100 Mbps connection. It also unblocks all torrent sites that have been blocked within Sri Lanka. For speeds of other worldwide servers of PIA, you can go through our PIA speed test guide.
You can enjoy PIA on multiple devices including Android, iOS, Mac, Windows, Roku, Kodi, and more for torrenting.
It has a complete zero-logging policy to enhance user privacy and offers security features to further guarantee security. These include IPv6 leak protection, DNS secure, and kill switch along with powerful AES-256 encryption. PIA passed its DNS leak test easily when we tested it by connecting to a Belgium server:
Therefore, PIA can keep your privacy safe and make it much more difficult for the government or hackers to see what you do online in Sri Lanka.
It costs $2.08/mo and comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee and 10 multi-logins. Overall, PIA is an excellent VPN to have your privacy protected and unblock streaming services.
You can learn more about this VPN in our PIA review.
Test Methodology: How we tested the best VPN for Sri Lanka
We tested more than 150+ different VPN providers and evaluated them based on the following criteria:
1. Server locations: The VPNs for Sri Lanka should have a large list of servers available. This factor allows users to change their IP addresses to any location and break restrictive barriers. All the VPNs above offer thousands of servers throughout the globe for users to connect to and enjoy any geo-restricted streaming service they like.
2. Encryption: A safe and secure connection is essential to prevent threats such as hackers stealing your credit card and other sensitive information. We ensured that the premium Sri Lanka VPNs listed above offer only the industry-level encryption standards, such as 256-bit.
3. Unlimited bandwidth: A VPN can quickly become useless if it places a bandwidth limit that you have run out of. You need to receive unlimited bandwidth, especially if you are using a VPN to access streaming services. All the VPNs we listed as the best VPNs for Sri Lanka have no data cap.
4, Logging policy: Some VPN providers keep logs of users, which means that users’ privacy can be undermined. Therefore, we thoroughly went through the logging policies of every provider we listed to ensure that they do not keep any user logs.
5. Money-back guarantee: All of the suggested VPNs for Sri Lanka come with money-back guarantees, so you can first try them out, and in case you are not satisfied, you can claim your refund.
6. Security features: VPNs are known to offer multiple security features to users. All VPNs above offer security features like a kill switch, DNS leak protection, anonymous browsing, AES 256-bit encryption, and more to users.
7. Ability to bypass geo-restrictions: To enjoy geo-restricted streaming services and websites from all over the world, you’d require a VPN. All the best VPNs for Sri Lanka listed above unblock geo-restricted streaming services within seconds and let you access them easily.
3 reasons why you need a VPN in Sri Lanka?
There are 3 significant reasons why a VPN is beneficial in Sri Lanka:
1. Censorship: Communal violence and hate speech against religious minorities is a recurring problem in Sri Lanka. The free and unregulated flow of information through social media has unfortunately facilitated violent incidents in the country in the past, leading to the blocking of social media. In these situations, VPN offers a useful bypass route to restriction-free internet in Sri Lanka.
2. Privacy: Journalists and bloggers need better privacy to avoid government surveillance. With these declining freedoms in Sri Lanka and online restrictions getting more severe, VPNs offer an easy way out. Premium VPN services offer efficient and top-notch security features that keep user activities completely secure. These include a kill switch, DNS leak protection, split tunnelling, and more.
3. Bypass geo-restrictions: VPNs allow you to bypass geo-restrictions on websites that do not work in Sri Lanka. With offshore servers, you can gain access to many geo-restricted streaming services such as Netflix, BBC iPlayer, and Hulu along with multiple websites banned in Sri Lanka. If you’re travelling outside the country and want to access your local bank, then you can do this by using a VPN too.
These benefits make high-quality VPNs valuable in countries like Sri Lanka, where internet restrictions can be imposed without any prior warning.
Internet surveillance in Sri Lanka
Internet accessibility in Sri Lanka is not free. The government leads intensive surveillance, especially on all political and news websites. Also, a lot of foreign channels and websites are blocked in the country.
Internet censorship is enforced there to support conventional social values and to maintain political stability. Any online content that initiates conversations about women’s rights is strictly prohibited in Sri Lanka.
While the need for these talks is completely logical in all aspects as gender inequality is a significant problem, the government has been blamed for using this as an excuse to censor and even block unrelated websites.
Nonetheless, you can circumvent all the prohibitive measures that the government has put in place using the best VPN for Sri Lanka. If you are concerned about your privacy in Sri Lanka, either because of government surveillance or increased cyberattacks, you need to find a trustworthy VPN service for your device in Sri Lanka.
There are various reasons why any individual will need to use a VPN in Sri Lanka besides protecting themselves from government surveillance. More people are using the internet to purchase services and commodities online. As such, many hackers and phishing agents are looking for your personal data.
Let’s not forget that the Sri Lankan authorities block social media sites from time to time. Therefore, accessing Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram, Whatsapp, etc. becomes impossible without a VPN. Therefore, a VPN for Sri Lanka helps you protect all your online activities from all these threats and bypass geo-restrictions effectively.
VPN guides for other countries
Here are a few VPN guides for other countries:
FAQs – Best VPN for Sri Lanka
Let’s take a look at some frequently asked questions.
Yes and no, since torrent sites fall under a legal grey area in Sri Lanka. You can download torrents as long as you don’t use them to download copyrighted material from the internet.
After testing 150+ different VPNs, we found that ExpressVPN is the most dependable VPN for Sri Lanka because of its military-grade encryption, extended network of international servers, and excellent geo unblocking capabilities.
Yes, VPNs are completely legal in Sri Lanka. In fact, using a dependable VPN, like the ones on our list, offers you to safeguard your online activities against government snooping and allows you to surf the web anonymously.
No, free VPNs shouldn’t be used in Sri Lanka at all. Many free VPN providers are often caught selling users’ personal information and online activity logs to different third-party organizations. They only offer very few server locations, limited bandwidth, and below-average connection speeds.
To guarantee secure access to all international content, complete online privacy from prying eyes, and security to avoid tracking, you definitely need a VPN to use in Sri Lanka.
While there are many contenders for this title, only a handful come true to their words and offer you the ultimate VPN experience. Among such providers, only one provider could be called the best VPN for Sri Lanka, and that is ExpressVPN.
You can avail of ExpressVPN’s 3-month free subscription if you go for its 12-months plan. It also comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee so you can easily use it in Sri Lanka and enjoy its services risk-free.