3 Best VPN's for Skype in 2018
Skype is a popular telecommunications app which allows users to connect via video call over the internet, for free.
Unfortunately, Skype is blocked in several countries for a number of reasons. Here, we look at how to unblock Skype from anywhere in the world, for business or pleasure, and why there are blocks in the first place.
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How To Unblock Skype: Get a VPN and Access Skype Anywhere
With many countries making Skype and other VoIP services almost impossible to access, a VPN for Skype is necessary.
When a country blocks Skype, ISPs are used to block the access. To unblock the restriction, a VPN can:
- Encrypt a device’s internet traffic so that the IP address is hidden.
- Re-route a device’s internet traffic through an extremely secure tunnel and via a server located elsewhere
- Act as a mask allowing users to bypass geographic restrictions imposed by restrictive bans making it possible for users to unblock Skype in China for example.
A VPN also makes a user’s internet connection anonymous and secure. So to unblock Skype in any country, by using a VPN, a user is also protecting the privacy of any conversations held over the VoIP app.
So Which VPN for Skype Is Best?
Knowing how a VPN works is all very well, but what are the best VPNs for Skype in practice? We have rated and reviewed many VPNs available on the market and listed them below. We found that it was crucial to have the following features for a VPN to be suitable for Skype:
- Fast speeds and unlimited bandwidth
With so many Skype VPN providers in today’s market, when looking for a Skype VPN it’s important to find a provider that offers fast speeds and unlimited bandwidth. Without them, your calls will be subject to video lags.
- Strong encryption levels
Strong encryption is of the utmost importance when looking for a Skype VPN to ensure that your internet use and Skype antics remain anonymous. This is crucial when browsing from a country where Skype is limited or banned.
- No logs policy
In some countries where using a VoIP service is considered a criminal offense (such as the UAE), make sure that your VPN of choice to unblock Skype offers no connection logs in order to avoid the prying eyes of third parties. This will stop your traffic getting into the wrong hands.
- A kill switch
A kill switch is needed so that if the VPN drops, so does your internet connection. This ensures the curtain doesn’t fall and show what you are doing on your computer.
We also recommend steering clear of a free VPN for Skype. While the “Free” part sounds enticing, there are numerous drawbacks, including capped bandwidth, slower speeds, and limited server networks to choose from. Not to mention annoying ad pop-ups and usage logs.
Top 3 VPNs for Skype
Here are 3 top contenders and what you can expect for connection speed and security, customer service, and ease of use.
#1: Express VPN: 9.5/10 – Best for Using Skype
This British Virgin Islands-based VPN is one of the leading providers out there, offering a highly customer-oriented service. Express VPN‘s strong encryption levels and fast speeds make it an ideal VPN to use for geo-spoofing your location and unblock Skype from anywhere in the world.
- Can be configured to work on just about any device – brilliant for Skype users on the go
- Huge server choice across 94 countries – Skype can be accessed anywhere in the world and consistently too
- Good speeds and unlimited bandwidth – perfect for video calling
- Slick, simple and easy to use interface
- Doesn’t log browsing history or traffic data – particularly good for using Skype in countries that block VoIP services
- Only three simultaneous connections allowed
- Doesn’t state whether or not it logs IP addresses
- A little on the pricey end
- $12.95 a month
- $9.99 a month for a six-month plan
- $8.32 a month for a 12-month plan
- 30-day money back guarantee
Part of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, which campaigns for a safe and open internet, IPVanish is a strong VPN contender, perfect to unblock Skype in China or any other restricted countries. Launched in 2012, it’s known for being an incredibly fast VPN with very advanced security options.
- Extremely quick speeds – perfect for important business Skype calls
- Five simultaneous connections allowed – ideal for small businesses and families
- Very user-friendly – makes using it in business even more efficient
- Over 1,000 servers to choose from (total of 60 countries) – with such a large server choice you’ll guarantee fast speeds and never be out of options for a secure connection
- Strict no logs policy – meaning none of your information or traffic data will be logged making it perfect for streaming under cover from restrictive countries
- Customer support can be a little on the slow side – though IPVanish do offer very helpful responses over email
- No option to live chat
- The apps aren’t very user-friendly
- $7.50 a month
- $6.74 a month for a three-month plan
- $4.87 a month for a 12-month plan billed annually
- Seven-day refund policy
Recently acquired by AVG, HideMyAss is a popular VPN provider that’s one of the oldest on the market with a strong focus on providing an efficient and very easy to use VPN.
- Massive server base with 190 country locations to choose from – this is great for connection speeds as well as reliability
- Can be used on the majority of devices – this is brilliant for when users are on the go
- Up to five device connections allowed – again this is great for small businesses and families who need multiple connections at a time
- Solid speeds that should be just fine for Skype calls
- HideMyAss is known for logging due to strict laws in the UK (where it’s based), so it wouldn’t be advised to use if Skype is illegal in the country you’re browsing from
- Email customer support is a little on the slow side though they are available 24/7 which is an obvious bonus
- Slightly slower than average download speeds (not the best for large files)
- $13.99 a month
- $7.99 a month for a six-month plan
- $9.99 a month for a 12-month plan
- 30-day money-back guarantee (read T&C’s for more, as it only applies to certain methods of download)
Why Can’t I Use Skype Everywhere?
Unfortunately, there are many countries across the globe unable to access Skype, even if they wanted to. This can be due to:
- Harsh government censorship – This can even can go as far as blocking the IP address of users’ devices making them unable to download Skype.
- Financial motivation – Due to the free video-calling nature of Skype, large telecom services fear for their resulting and potential loss of revenue. Monopolized by communication companies, they see Skype as a major threat to their profits and call for blocks on Skype to protect profits. Belize is just one example of this.
- Inability to monitor services – This is the case in Egypt and China who want to be able to know what its citizens are doing and saying.
Where is Skype Blocked?
Countries where Skype is banned include:
- North Korea
- United Arab Emirates
Keep in mind that there are other countries not mentioned on this list, that have been through phases of banning Skype. Blocks are often put in place during times of political unrest, as seen in Tunisia and Venezuela.
The EU Looks to Regulate Skype and Other VoIP Programs
Sadly it’s looking like the EU might soon be heading down a similar path.
A new draft legislation from the European Commission, leaked in December 2016, unleashed new plans for VoIP messaging services. It outlined a proposal where apps such as Skype, Whatsapp, and Facebook Messenger, will be subject to increased regulation under new ‘online privacy’ rules.
This would bring about harsher regulations for VoIP services, with their future involving relentless monitoring (in the same way as carriers). With the confidentiality of Europeans’ online messages at stake, the question still remains as to whether this proposal will pass or not.
Get the Best VPN for Skype
For those who live in internet restricted countries, are traveling, or perhaps need to set up business calls with others where Skype is blocked, a Skype VPN offers the ability to work around blocks.
As mentioned, we would advise steering clear of a free VPN for Skype and getting your hands on a solid and reputable VPN so you’ll be able to carry on video-calling.
By simply switching your IP address and rerouting your internet traffic through a server in a country where Skype is available, you’ll be able to trick the system and Skype confidently, no matter where you are in the world.
We recommend ExpressVPN due to its connection speed, customer service and strict security measures.