The United Arab Emirates has some of the world's strictest Internet regulations that impose a number of digital roadblocks. As per Freedom House's latest report, the country is classified as "Not Free" in terms of Internet censorship. Thousands of websites and platforms are blocked, preventing UAE citizens and tourists from using the Web freely.
To enjoy the Web without restrictions in Dubai and the rest of the country, you need a UAE VPN. More precisely, you’ll get to connect to secure servers outside the UAE and change your virtual location. This will make it seem as though you’re in another country with no Internet censorship and regulations.
In this article, we’ll recommend the 6 best VPNs for the UAE and Dubai and explain how to get a UAE IP address. We’ll also discuss how you can benefit from a VPN and provide some tips about using a VPN for Dubai. So, without further ado, let’s begin!
Best UAE VPN - Our Shortlist
- NordVPN – Our #1-Rated UAE VPN
- ExpressVPN – Top VPN for the UAE with Lightning-Fast Speeds
- CyberGhost VPN – Best VPN in the UAE for Torrenting
- Private Internet Access – Powerful Dubai VPN with a Wide Server Network
- Surfshark – Best Beginner-Friendly, High-Speed VPN
- Ivacy VPN – Best VPN for UAE Residents on a Budget
How to Get a UAE IP Address
To get a UAE IP address, you’ll need to subscribe to a suitable VPN with servers in the UAE. Then, you’ll need to connect to a server in the country. Here’s what to do:
- Subscribe to a VPN with servers in the UAE (we recommend NordVPN).
- Download and install the VPN app on your device(s).
- Open the VPN app and log in to your account.
- Find and connect to a VPN server located in the UAE.
- Now, you can access the Internet with a UAE IP address.
Best VPN UAE
To find the best VPN for the UAE, you need to follow the criteria that we already set in our guide to the best VPNs with the most servers. In other words, you need a VPN with servers in the UAE so you can display a UAE IP address if needed, as well as access content within the country.
Your chosen VPN should also have a wide server network to help you access geo-blocked content unavailable in the UAE. Then, it must have strong security measures (such as AES encryption and protocols like OpenVPN and WireGuard) to bypass firewalls and prevent data leaks. And, of course, the best Dubai VPN also needs to offer a no-logs policy to ensure that your online activity is never collected or stored.
Also, ensure you get enough simultaneous connections. And to be on the safe side, pick a UAE VPN with a generous money-back policy and 24/7 live chat customer support.
Based on the criteria mentioned above, here are the 6 best UAE VPNs in2023
1. NordVPN – Our #1-Rated UAE VPN
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NordVPN has over 5,500 servers in around 60 countries, including the UAE. The provider has 5 servers in the UAE, all obfuscated. Using any of those servers, you can bypass the country’s strict censorship and avoid VPN-detection measures.
One of the standouts of NordVPN is its double routing. This is an advanced 'stealth mode' that makes sure no one tracks you on the Web. Aside from 'Double VPN' servers, NordVPN offers additional specialty servers like onion-over-VPN and obfuscated servers.
This VPN works on practically any device and offers highly polished applications. Also, it's powered by protocols such as OpenVPN and NordLynx (WireGuard), which are more than suitable for use in a country like the UAE. Needless to say, it's an audited no-logs VPN provider.
We'll also add that many Etisalat customers rely on NordVPN to unblock their access to the Web from the UAE and Dubai. That ISP is quite adamant about blocking VPNs, which makes it highly important to listen to advice from those who live in the UAE. So, if you're an Etisalat customer, our strong recommendation would be to use NordVPN before trying any other VPN.
Lastly, we'll mention that NordVPN comes with 30-day money-back guarantees. Its customer support agents are available 24/7 via live chat.
- Plenty of specialty servers.
- Supports double encryption.
- Effective in unblocking websites.
- Apps for any device out there.
- 24/7-available customer support.
- Fine-tuning is required.
2. ExpressVPN – Top VPN for the UAE with Lightning-Fast Speeds
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ExpressVPN doesn’t have any servers in the UAE, but it does work in the UAE and covers 94 other countries. The provider offers more than 3,000 servers you can use to unblock all kinds of content anywhere in the world.
This capable UAE VPN is powered by OpenVPN and Lightway (ExpressVPN's own protocol). It also uses AES-256 encryption, ensuring no one sees what you do online. On top of that, all ExpressVPN servers are obfuscated by default. That's why it works so well in the UAE.
It’s also worth noting that ExpressVPN works great for unblocking sites, including streaming services. Based on our tests, it works with Netflix, Hulu, Prime Video, Disney+, and more. Also, this VPN helps you unblock communication (VoIP) apps such as Skype and WhatsApp.
On top of all that, ExpressVPN is a no-logs VPN provider with many independent audits under its belt. Practically all its apps have been audited, so you can rest assured that your privacy will remain protected.
You can also count on the VPN's 24/7-available customer support. There's even an option to chat live with ExpressVPN's support team. Lastly, this VPN offers a generous 30-day money-back guarantee, protecting your investment.
- Capable VPN protocols.
- High-end (AES-256) encryption.
- Over 3,000 servers.
- Great for unblocking sites and apps.
- 24/7-available customer support.
- No servers in the UAE.
3. CyberGhost VPN – Best VPN in the UAE for Torrenting
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CyberGhost has one of the largest server networks on the market: over 9,500 servers in 90+ countries, including the UAE. The provider has 12 servers located in Dubai. You can connect this VPN to UAE servers and access the Internet within the country, or you can connect to a server outside the country to access geo-restricted content.
With CyberGhost, you can access all the most popular streaming platforms, including Netflix, Hulu, Disney+, BBC iPlayer, HBO Max, and more. You can also use apps like Skype, WhatsApp, and other platforms otherwise blocked in the UAE.
This UAE VPN offers powerful security and privacy measures like DNS leak protection, IPv6 leak protection, a kill switch, an ad-blocker, anti-malware, and more. It also maintains a strict no-logs policy that will ensure your online activity is hidden.
Finally, CyberGhost offers 24/7 customer support via live chat on its site. If unsatisfied with its services, you can get a full refund within 14 days of your monthly subscription or 45 days if you get one of its longer-term plans.
- Wide server network.
- 12 servers in the UAE.
- Excellent security and privacy.
- 24/7 customer support.
- 45-day money-back guarantee.
- Slower than its competitors.
4. Private Internet Access – Powerful Dubai VPN with a Wide Server Network
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Private Internet Access (PIA) has the largest server network on the market, with thousands of servers in 80+ countries worldwide, including the UAE. This VPN works inside and outside the country, allowing you to unblock geo-restricted content from almost anywhere in the world.
This UAE VPN is backed by ultra-strong protocols such as OpenVPN and WireGuard. However, its apps are built upon open-source technology, proving that PIA has nothing to hide. It doesn't collect any of your data while ensuring no third party can follow your online whereabouts.
What's unique here is PIA's high level of customization. You can set various levels of encryption for each of its supported protocols, instructing the VPN to handle your data in a very precise way. So, users in the UAE will undoubtedly appreciate that possibility, as PIA gives you many options to evade UAE's Internet restrictions.
This VPN also supports unlimited simultaneous connections. That's a good thing because you can install and use PIA on a huge range of devices. Also, it comes with a very flexible interface, allowing you to modify UI blocks to suit your needs.
We'll also mention that PIA comes with a 30-day money-back policy. And, in case of any issues or questions, you can rely on this UAE VPN's 24/7 live chat support.
- Wide platform compatibility.
- Strong VPN protocols.
- High level of customization.
- Large server network.
- Reliable customer support.
- Best for more advanced users.
- Requires some fine-tuning.
5. Surfshark – Best Beginner-Friendly, High-Speed VPN
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Surfshark covers more than 100 countries with a network of 3,200+ servers. It has servers in the UAE, specifically in Dubai. They come with private DNS, Camouflage Mode, extension support, and the choice between OpenVPN, WireGuard, IPsec, or IKEv2 protocols. With this VPN provider, you’ll be able to access any kind of censored content from within the UAE.
Everything about Surfshark is polished and optimized for privacy. That begins with its apps, which are available for any desktop or mobile device. Once you install this VPN, you need to launch it, and pick a server, and it will unblock the Web in the UAE easily and without much fuss.
One of the reasons for that is Surfshark's 'NoBorders' technology. It activates automatically in restrictive countries, such as the UAE. You can also activate it manually by visiting the VPN's settings. Once you do so, your data packets become much smaller than usual, which helps them get through any type of data filtering and censorship.
This UAE VPN is equally suitable for browsing, streaming, torrenting, and gaming. Our test show that Surfshark is among the fastest VPNs available right now.
Lastly, you can count on its no-questions-asked 30-day money-back policy. And, as you'd expect from the best VPN for the UAE, there's 24/7 live chat support as well.
- Fully-automated VPN solution.
- Great for first-time VPN users.
- Special 'NoBorders' technology.
- No data logging, whatsoever.
- 24/7-available customer support.
- Remote connections can be slow.
- Can take a while to connect.
6. Ivacy VPN – Best VPN for UAE Residents on a Budget
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Ivacy VPN also covers 100+ countries worldwide with its 3,500+ servers, including the UAE. It has a server in Dubai that you can connect to and get a UAE IP address. You can also use it to access content blocked in the UAE by connecting to a server outside the country.
This Singapore-based VPN gives you many protocols, with OpenVPN leading the pack. Based on your goals, you can also try somewhat less secure but fast-performing protocols like L2TP, IKEv2, and IPsec.
Then, Ivacy offers incredibly simple-to-use apps for pretty much any device out there. You can get started with this UAE VPN in a matter of minutes on your computer, phone, tablet, streaming device, and more. Since it supports up to 5 simultaneous connections, you can protect your entire household with native VPN software.
Let's not forget that Ivacy is one of the best options for streaming. To unblock streaming services in the UAE, Ivacy offers specialized servers that unblock many mainstream and niche platforms. Aside from that, you'll find regular servers for bypassing Internet restrictions, as well as downloading files from the Web.
And, in case you were wondering, yes - this VPN also has a 30-day money-back policy, as well as 24/7 live chat support.
- Plenty of VPN protocols on offer.
- Fully-automated VPN solution.
- Range of specialized servers on offer.
- Good for media streaming.
- Plenty of value overall.
- Doesn't allow fine-tuning.
- No support for WireGuard.
- Somewhat unpredictable performance.
Why Do You Need a UAE VPN?
You need a VPN in the UAE to secure your privacy while unblocking websites, Web apps, and digital services. Find more details just below.
- Safeguard Your Privacy: The primary purpose of any VPN is to protect your privacy. You don't want sites to track you, collect your data, or see what you do online. So, no matter if you connect to the Web from your home, public places, or using a mobile network, a VPN will protect any type of Web connection and prevent your data from leaking.
- Prevent ISP Tracking & Data Logging: UAE's ISPs filter and collect your data, which is the only way for them to implement lists of blocked websites. So, even if you wish to unblock sites, you'll want to hide your Web browsing history from your ISP. To learn more, here's what your ISP can see once you start using a VPN.
- Unblock Websites & Digital Services: In the past, sites and apps like Facebook, YouTube, Skype, and WhatsApp were banned in the UAE (some of which remain inaccessible). The only way to bypass those blocks is by using a VPN.
How to Choose the Best VPN for the UAE?
Finding a VPN that works in the UAE has become more complex over time. So, during your search for the best UAE VPN, make sure to pay attention to the following:
- Strong & Capable VPN Protocols: The UAE government has access to spyware and tech developed to dive deep into data collection and filtering. So, it's imperative to find a VPN with extra-strong protocols like OpenVPN and WireGuard. Also, some VPNs allow you to use multiple servers at once, or they might offer special servers for data obfuscation.
- Data Leak Protection: You'll want a VPN to create an extra-secure tunnel for your data, ensuring no IPv4, IPv6, DNS, or WebRTC leaks happen. Don't forget that it takes only a split second for a data leak to reveal everything about your online whereabouts. To learn more, check our complete guide to VPN leaks.
- Strict No-Logs Policy: Pretty much any reputable VPN offers a no-logs policy, which means your personal data is never collected by their servers. When it comes to UAE VPNs, you'll want one that was audited by an independent party.
- Broad Platform/Device Support: These days, you can use a VPN on any computer, phone, tablet, or media streaming device. Consider what devices you want to cover, then pay attention to whether your chosen VPN offers native software for all those platforms.
- Money-Back Guarantees: Know that buying a VPN doesn't have to be a risky investment. Instead, you'll get to count on money-back guarantees, giving you every right to change your mind and have your money returned (during a period of up to 30 days, most often).
What Makes a Good VPN for UAE and Dubai?
A good VPN for the UAE should not log your data. And also, it should provide you with a range of VPN protocols that can bypass UAE's Web restrictions.
Since UAE's Internet providers don't respect your privacy, it's your responsibility to protect yourself on the Internet. However, don't make a mistake using a VPN that collects your data (which is the case with many free and premium-priced VPNs), as that once again puts your privacy at risk. Instead, use a VPN that has been audited in the past.
When it comes to VPN protocols, first, make sure to read more about what to expect from each VPN protocol. You'll see that we recommend OpenVPN primarily, and that especially applies to Internet users in the United Arab Emirates. Even though OpenVPN will slow you down a bit, it has the power to unblock the Web in the UAE.
Is a VPN Illegal in the UAE?
No, VPNs are not illegal in the UAE. However, know that UAE's authorities have been actively blocking access to a range of VPN services.
If you check our guide that explains where VPNs are illegal, you'll see that VPNs are highly restricted and regulated in the UAE. However, they're not unlawful.
More precisely, you won't get into trouble for just using a VPN. However, it's unlawful to use a VPN for the purpose of "committing a crime or preventing its discovery."
For example, pornography- and gambling-related websites are banned, so you should avoid visiting those. Aside from that, UAE's government has been very vindictive towards those who speak against the current political climate.
Can You Get a Free UAE VPN in Dubai?
Yes, you can get a free VPN in the UAE - but that doesn't mean you should use one. In fact, make sure to avoid free VPNs at all costs.
As you've seen by now, using a VPN in the UAE and Dubai is not something that should be taken for granted. Your ISP keeps track of your traffic, so there's no reason to test your luck by using a free VPN (that most probably can't even unblock websites).
Know that free VPNs have limited features, slow performance, and strict data allowances. At best, they can be useful for quick browsing sessions. However, even in that case, there's a risk of your data leaking online.
It's essential to use a quality UAE VPN that can protect you online - and that's not what free VPNs bring. So, our strong recommendation is to use a commercial VPN. You can pick any of our recommendations, or you can check our guide to the best VPN services.
With the UAE being one of the most regulated countries in the world regarding Internet freedom, residents and tourists need a powerful UAE VPN to protect themselves online. A VPN can help them change their virtual location, bypass geo-blocks, and display a UAE IP address.
We recommend NordVPN as the best VPN for the UAE because it offers high-end privacy and 5 servers in the UAE you can connect to. Best of all, it's incredibly easy to use, has plenty of advanced features, and provides a lot of value overall.
Is VPN Allowed in the UAE?
Yes, VPNs are allowed in the UAE. However, the UAE has laws related to the use of VPNs which state that a VPN is illegal if used to commit crimes.
Which VPN Has UAE Servers?
NordVPN, CyberGhost, Private Internet Access, Surfshark, and Ivacy VPN are among the best VPNs with UAE servers. Most of them have servers located in Dubai.
Can You Get Punished for Using a VPN in the UAE?
Yes, you can get punished for using a VPN in the UAE if you access immoral content or commit crimes. You could get a 6-month (or longer) prison sentence or a fine of up to 1 million AED.
Can UAE Police Track VPNs?
No, UAE police can’t track VPNs because they encrypt your Web activity. That said, it’s still highly recommended that you use a VPN with a no-logs policy to ensure the VPN hasn’t cooperated with the authorities or been compelled to turn over user data in the past.
Which Websites Are Blocked in the UAE?
Anything that 'contradicts the ethics and morality of the UAE' is blocked. This includes pornographic and online gambling sites, websites that promote anti-religious hate speech, services that promote copyright infringement, Israeli websites, and more.
Does ExpressVPN Work in the UAE?
Yes - ExpressVPN works in the UAE without any issues. If you contact this VPN's customer support team, you'll learn about which servers are recommended at the moment.
Does NordVPN Work in the UAE?
Yes - NordVPN works in the UAE just fine. In fact, this is currently one of the most popular VPNs in the United Arab Emirates due to its strong security measures.
What’s the Best VPN for Skype in UAE?
Any of our recommendations for the best VPN for UAE can unblock Skype. However, you should be careful when using this VoIP application since it’s officially banned. That's where stealth VPNs come into play, like NordVPN and ExpressVPN, for example.
What’s the Best VPN for Android in UAE?
Some VPN Android apps are more capable than others, while some are more intuitive when it comes to their user interface. Our advice is to look at Android apps offered by the VPNs found in this article and make your final decision based on that.
You've reached the end of our guide on the best VPN for the UAE. If you have any questions, make sure to post them just below. Thank you for reading!