The Best VPNs for UAE Dubai - Access Blocked Sites Anonymously
Why Do I Need A VPN?
A large amount of content on the internet is blocked in the UAE for several reasons. This stops citizens and travelers from watching programs they would otherwise freely view elsewhere.
Even when visiting relatively relaxed cities like Dubai, the larger country laws still apply. This means that the following content is blocked, amongst many others:
- Social networking and dating sites, like Match.com
- SIP services, like Skype or IMO
- Content that is politically sensitive
- Any site with an Israeli domain
- Dubai Porn
- Content that challenges the morals of the UAE
With so much content blocked in the UAE, a VPN is a way around that problem. VPNs allow you to stream the TV shows you want to watch and to call friends on communication apps like Skype.
What Is A VPN?
A VPN is a Virtual Private Network which allows users to hide where exactly they are in the world.
This is important in the UAE as, if you use a VPN, it means that you can give your IP address the appearance of being in a country, where the content you want to access, is not blocked.
In practice, this means that if you want to access content that is freely available in the USA, your VPN will connect to a server in the States. This makes your computer look like it’s streaming from the US and not in the UAE.
VPNs are a great way to get around local restrictions and internet monitoring. In fact, they basically allow you to access any content you want. In the UAE in particular, you can even access unblocked porn sites.
Additionally, the best VPNs for UAE can simply be used to add another level of security while you browse the internet.
VPNs were initially invented to stop hackers from being able to view sensitive data or browsing history, and they will still allow you to do so today.
Read on to find out how to you can still open blocked sites in the UAE by using a VPN like NordVPN
What Makes A Good VPN?
When choosing a VPN provider, keep an eye out for these factors to make sure you are choosing the best one for you:
- Connection speed You need a healthy connection speed to make sure your calls or TV programmes don’t cut out midway
- Number of servers The more servers a VPN provider has, the better. More servers means a faster connection time allowing you to access content more quickly
- Server location You need servers in locations where your content is not blocked
- Privacy Browsing the internet and accessing content that may be blocked in the UAE means that you need a VPN provider that offers the best logging policies and encryption software
- Price VPNs do not need to cost a lot. Being expensive does not necessarily mean you are getting the best either
What if My VPN Doesn’t Work In The UAE?
If your VPN is not working while in the UAE, it is a good idea to check the following:
- Simple Configuration Elements Ensure that you are not using your VPN to connect to a server in Dubai. It’s a classic, but easy mistake to make. Make sure you are connected to a server in a country where your content is allowed instead. Places like Russia or China will have similarly strict laws, so it’s best to avoid them.
- Website Blocks If your VPN works for most websites, but not one in particular, you may be trying to access content from a site that has imposed its own ban on known VPNs. Netflix is a classic example of this.
- Port/IP Blocking Attempts VPNs can be banned in some places, either by government or telecommunication companies. They enforce this ban by blocking certain ports or IP addresses that have been identified as hosting VPN traffic. Follow your VPN instructions on how to switch ports manually.
- Connectivity and DNS issues It may not actually be your VPN that is the issue, but simply the strength of your internet connection. Give that a look too. VPN Providers have ways of testing this out, called a Ping test. Look to them for guidance on how to carry one out.
- Contact the Provider Make use of the hands-on service you get from VPN providers. Many have chat services that will help you on the spot with any questions.
- Try a different VPN While this is very much a fallback option, make the most of free trials or money back guarantees if your VPN is simply not working for you.
Can I Use A Free VPN In UAE Dubai?
A VPN that you don’t have to pay for may sound enticing, but the trouble that comes with it definitely isn’t worth the few dollars you’d save. There are two main reasons why a free VPN for Dubia is a bad idea:
Not Enough Servers
Because users do not pay for this VPN service, the provider does only the bare minimum. Free VPNs typically have a very small number of servers available to their users, which means everyone is using the same ones. This causes very slow internet connections, so you can forget about streaming videos, because they will be constantly buffering.
Free VPN providers may not charge users for their services, but they need to make their money somehow. Many of these companies make a profit off of selling user data to advertisers, authorities, or anyone who is willing to pay for it. this is especially dangerous for those in Dubai wishing to view content that is against the law. Additionally, these VPNs are known to drop out often, which means that your identity could be exposed any any moment, within seconds.
Are VPNs Illegal In UAE Dubai?
Staying within the law is obviously very important, and up until recently, VPNs were totally legal to use in Dubai and the wider UAE.
However, in 2016, a law was passed that made it illegal to use a fake network address, though users would only be subject to prosecution if they used VPNs or other software with the intention of ‘committing a crime or preventing its discovery’. Those who are found guilty of committing such an offense are subject to a short time in prison as well as a fine that can vary between Dhs 500,000 and Dhs 2,000,000.
This type of non-committal language is not particularly comforting and caused a great deal of confusion for people who wanted to use a VPN for UAE. The Abu Dhabi Public Prosecution offered further clarity on the matter therefore by stating that it is not against the law to install and use a VPN, but it is against the law to use a VPN to access what would otherwise be blocked content.
Outside of those who want to use the best VPN in UAE for personal reasons, difficulties arose from this for companies that regularly use VPNs for their staff. Companies use them as a means for employees to access corporate applications, systems, and files. Plus, many corporations now use VoIP to carry out day to day business, which are seemingly illegal in Dubai, Abu Dhabi and the wide UAE.
It is important to note, that while VPNs have often been placed in the grey area of the law anywhere in the world, illegal activity in the UAE of any kind is very harshly received. When those who have been caught committing online infractions, large fines and prison terms have been handed out for what many Western countries would consider to be perfectly normal online activity.
The repercussion of this is that if you are planning to use a VPN while in the UAE, in Dubai or otherwise, it is good practice to use the very best that the market has to offer so that you are kept as safe as possible. In reality, this means:
- A strong connection (this saves against any drop in service that will expose your identity to anyone)
- High-grade encryption
- A kill switch
- Guaranteed Uptime
The Best VPN For UAE
With a 2-year subscription plan that can cost just $3.99 a month, NordVPN is a great-value offer. With almost 4000 servers with countless locations around the globe, it can almost rival ExpressVPN’s offering in terms of quality of connection and speed.
Its connection is also very secure with its strict policies on anonymity and privacy. If the app does not work for you while streaming TV in Dubai, it also comes with a money back guarantee. NordVPN gives you 30 days to try out their service.
- $11.95/month for one month
- $6.99/month for 12 months
- $3.99/month for two years
ExpressVPN tops our charts continuously for several reasons, and it is easily the best VPN for Dubai that the market has to offer. It ticks all the boxes in terms of what is required of a VPN with its quick and secure connection and unrivaled customer service.
More specifically, it has not only the highest speeds available for streaming content, but it also has the most consistent speeds we have seen. Plus, it has 1,500 servers with over 90 country locations. The app delivered a smooth service throughout our tests and we noticed no drop in quality throughout its use.
The provider allows its app to be used on up to three devices, which can also include mobile phones. Its pricing option for a year is particularly attractive, especially with its 30-day money back guarantee – which is available across all its subscription options.
- $12.95/month for one month
- $9.99/month for six months
- $6.67/month for twelve months plus three months free
One of the newer VPN’s on the block, SaferVPN is a great option for those in need of a VPN in Dubai. Its attitude to privacy makes it stand out with a no-logging policy that makes streaming and accessing content in Dubai much safer. The company also employs complicated encryption techniques, but can be used on most devices without slowing down its connection.
Torrents are not supported with this provider, but access to content that is blocked due to geography, like Netflix and Skype, is possible. They have a large number of servers in an ever growing amount of countries.
To stay competitive with its rivals, SaferVPN offers a 30-day money back guarantee too.
- $8.99/month for one month
- $5.49/month for a year
- $3.29/month for two years
The Bottom Line
If you are moving to Dubai or the UAE, and not just traveling there for a short time, you will find that a VPN is invaluable.
A VPN, like NordVPN, will not only help you watch your favorite TV shows, it will also allow you to keep up with your friends and family via legal VoIP applications.