Best VPN For China

Best VPN For China

Using a VPN service in china is a must do! China has the most heavily censored online activity in the world. Many popular domains are simply BLOCKED from China entirely – meaning you can’t access them when you’re there! The Chinese state also monitors internet usage HEAVILY!

Making sure you have the best VPN service in China is fundamental to a secure and private experience online in China – and to make sure you can watch your favorite TV shows!

If you don’t have a VPN and you live in China or are just visiting, you won’t be able to use Google, Twitter, WhatsApp, and many more websites and apps. It doesn’t matter where in china you’re visiting, you will need to use a VPN to keep your online activities private and hidden from Chinese state surveillance.

Unfortunately, many VPN services simply don’t work in China! So, we have reviewed the best and most reliable VPNs to use in China to make sure you bypass China’s Great Firewall.

These have been reviewed based on a strict 62-point check list. As new VPNs come onto the market every day, we constantly update the list of the Best VPN to use in China so it’s always up to date!

All of our selected VPN providers will unblock your favorite websites and apps, while protecting your privacy from the prying eyes of the Chinese government. They are also super easy to install and use! So, you can be secure online in just a minute!

How to Bypass the Great Firewall of China

The famous Great Firewall of China is a content filtering technology developed and run by the Chinese government. This firewall blocks your access to anything online, except those allowed by China.

What this means is that while in China, you can’t access sites like Google, news sites like BBC, CNN and New York Times, or social media sites like Facebook, Instagram, Gmail, Twitter, YouTube, Reddit, and more. Indeed, China aims to keep everyone in line by keeping track and recording everything you do, particularly in the online space.

However, tough as it seems, a VPN can help you get past this firewall. Evading this firewall would require that you download and use a VPN that successfully breaks through the firewall. With the increased crackdown on VPNs, though, how can you access your favorite sites in China?

When selecting a VPN for use in China, consider the following:

  • Reliability: Does the VPN successfully unblock the Chinese firewall at all times? Or does it have the resources to get past a crackdown?
  • Speed: Will the VPN allow you access your favorite streaming sites without buffering issues?
  • Server network: How many servers does the VPN have? How many of these are in the Asian region to ensure you enjoy fast connection speeds?
  • Security and privacy: How secure is the VPN? Are there chances DNS and IP leaks could compromise your privacy?
  • Compatibility: Can you successfully break into your favorite streaming sites after bypassing the Chinese firewall?

Best VPN For China

1. ExpressVPN

  • One of the fastest VPNs with same-country speeds
  • Strict logging policy and no IP, WebRTC, DNS leaks
  • A vast network of servers across 160 cities in 94 countries as well as great privacy features
  • User-friendly apps compatible with IOS, Mac, Android, and PC
  • Allows file sharing and unrestricted torrenting
  • More expensive than other VPN services
  • Fires Stick TV can be improved
  • Best Price

    £6.54/month - 12 months plan

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  • Top Speed

    85Mbps

  • Servers

    94 Countries

  • Available on

The Bottom Line

ExpressVPN is probably the most popular VPN provider in China. While it is not the cheapest VPN out there, it is a favorite for many users for good reason. It has a vast server network, fast and consistent speeds, 24/7 live support, and allows up to five connections at the same time.

The ExpressVPN app is incredibly easy to use, and is compatible with all major mobile and desktop platforms. That includes iOS, Windows, Linux, MacOS, Android, Fire TV, and routers. The VPN service supports torrenting on all of its servers, and a handful of its servers are compatible with Netflix.

ExpressVPN is our recommended choice for China as it reliably bypasses the country’s Great Firewall, and unblocks WhatsApp, Facebook, Skype, Instagram, Google, Netflix, and more. Its connections are incredibly fast and are available in a huge number of countries.

2. NordVPN

  • Stable and fast VPN speeds
  • Allows torrenting on many servers
  • Works great with Netflix, BBC iPlayer and other streaming services
  • User-friendly apps for IOS, Mac, Android and PC
  • Strong logging policy and no IP, WebRTC, and DNS leaks
  • Massive server networks: over 5,700 servers running in 60 countries
  • Alternative VPN protocols require manual configuration
  • Obfuscated servers (designed for countries with restricted access) do not always work in China
  • There are no obfuscated servers for IOS
  • Best Price

    £2.86/month - 2 yrs plan

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  • Top Speed

    90.51Mbps

  • Servers

    60 Countries

  • Available on

The Bottom Line

Originally in operation almost everywhere but China, NordVPN’s entry into China was met with great relief. The VPN service offers great value for money, allowing up to 6 simultaneous connections on one subscription. Impressively, it also maintains a strong server network in over 60 countries.

NordVPN successfully allows access to streaming sites like US Netflix and Hulu, unlike most other VPNs, and torrenting is supported on most of its servers.

NordVPN also boasts impressive privacy and security features. It stores no logs of user activity and maintains very strong security and encryption standards. Specialized servers are optimized for ultra-fast streaming, double VPN, anti-DDoS, and Tor over VPN.

Both desktop versions for MacOS and Windows work well in China. If you are an Android user, the beta version of NordVPN’s newest app will be best for surfing the web in China. Unfortunately, NordVPN’s iOS app version does not currently bypass the Great Firewall.

3. PrivateVPN

  • Very fast VPN speeds
  • Compatible with Netflix, BBC iPlayer, and other streaming services
  • User-friendly apps for popular devices
  • Strict logging policy and protection against IP, DNS, and WebRTC leaks
  • Allows torrenting and P2P activity on all VPN servers
  • No custom app for Linux
  • Small server network
  • Live chat is inconsistent
  • Best Price

    $3.82/month - 12 months plan

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  • Top Speed

    86.7Mbps

  • Servers

    59 Countries

  • Available on

The Bottom Line

One of the smaller VPNs on this list, PrivateVPN is proof that size doesn’t equate reliability. PrivateVPN is built for privacy, as its name implies, and that is clearly seen in its top-of-the-line security features. Based in the privacy-friendly nation that is Sweden, it keeps absolutely no logs of your data.

The VPN reliably breaks through the Great Firewall of China, as well as most other geo-blocks. You’d find over 150 servers distributed across 60 countries to choose from, including servers in the less restrictive Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Japan.

Another impressive feature of PrivateVPN is its speed. Connections are typically fast and steady, regardless of the server location. Once connected, you will be able to successfully access Netflix (US and others), Google, your mail, and more.

For internet access within China, you’re advised to enable Stealth mode. This feature hides your VPN traffic, disguising it as regular internet traffic. This tricks your ISP into opening up access to any site. Customer service is available 24/7 so feel free to contact them with any concerns or queries.

4. Surfshark

  • Successfully bypasses the Chinese firewall
  • Cheap and affordable
  • Unlimited simultaneous connections
  • Surprisingly easy interface
  • Fast streaming and download speeds
  • P2P support
  • 24/7 live chat
  • Compatible with Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Hulu, Sky TV, Amazon Prime Video, etc
  • Small server network
  • Occasionally slow
  • Apps could be improved
  • Best Price

    £1.49/month - 24 months plan

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  • Top Speed

    48.99Mbps

  • Servers

    53 Countries

  • Available on

The Bottom Line

With just over 1700 servers in 63+ countries, Surfshark boasts one of the fastest growing server networks. Its pricing and allowance for unlimited simultaneous connections means its an affordable option for large families.

Surfshark provides fast and reliable connections from any server, allowing you stream in HD without endless buffers. With the powerful NoBorders Mode activated, you can get past even the toughest of geo-blocks – including the Great Firewall of China.

To further ensure your success, the VPN allows a Camouflage mode that transforms your VPN traffic into regular traffic. This makes it impossible for your connection to ever be detected by the Chinese. With its base in the British Virgin Islands, the VPN also boasts an excellent privacy credential.

Other critical features include the CyberWeb feature which blocks out malware, ads and trackers; the Whitelist feature which enables you set particular sites to bypass he VPN, thus allowing you browse local and international sites simultaneously; and the MultiHop feature which bounces your traffic through several servers, making it more difficult to trace you.

5. hide.me

  • Successfully bypasses the Chinese firewall
  • Fast streaming and download speeds
  • 1800 servers over 70 locations
  • Up to 10 simultaneous connections
  • P2P support on most servers
  • Impressive security and privacy options
  • Compatible with Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Hulu, Sky TV, Amazon Prime Video, etc
  • Limited number of IP addresses
  • Best Price

    £4.61/month - 2 yrs plan

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  • Top Speed

    81Mbps

  • Servers

    35 Countries

  • Available on

The Bottom Line

Hide.me is a surprising VPN. Not only does this VPN work in China, it also allows free users try out the server in Singapore which works just fine from inside mainland China. The VPN reliably unblocks domestic as well as international sites from China, depending on your needs.

The VPN is fast enough for streaming, allowing you stream without too many buffer issues. But it’s also highly secure. A 256-bit AES encryption and kill switch keeps it impenetrable. Likewise, Hide.me keeps no logs and offers a strong leak protection to safeguard against IP and DNS leaks.

A new Stealth Guard feature allows you block certain apps from opening without the VPN connected. Throw in a split-tunneling feature, money-back guarantee, and a valuable customer care system, and it makes for a great deal.

If you simply want to watch all of your favorite shows from within China, hide.me reliably unblocks Netflix. It also gets you into Facebook, Google, and other sites. It also works great with a ton of devices, including your router, ensuring you have no issues with compatibility.

6. Hotspot Shield

  • Successfully bypasses the Chinese firewall
  • Over 3,000 servers
  • Fast connection speed
  • 45-day money-back guarantee
  • Fairly priced
  • Up to 5 simultaneous connections
  • Compatible with Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Hulu, Sky TV, Amazon Prime Video, etc
  • Doesn’t support Linux
  • Difficulty unblocking some streaming sites
  • Best Price

    Premium plan - $7.99/month

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  • Top Speed

    90.63Mbps

  • Servers

    75 Countries

  • Available on

The Bottom Line

One of the faster VPNs in town, Hotspot shield is a reliable VPN with worldwide reach and a sprawling server network. It boasts an impressive security system, with a security protocol of its own that rivals the OpenVPN protocol – providing both speed and security.

Hotspot Shield successfully breaks through the Chinese firewall with ease, employing an automatic kill switch to keep you protected even when your connection drops. Its proprietary Catapult Hydra protocol enables it perform at extraordinary speeds.

With over 3,000 servers in 80+ countries, servers are available in countries around China, including China itself – meaning you can even access domestic sites privately. And with strict privacy and security features, as well as an impressive 45-day money-back guarantee, the VPN is a great choice for China.

7. Ivacy

  • True zero-logs policy
  • Easy to setup and use
  • Safe and secure VPN
  • Excellent customer service
  • Decent VPN speeds
  • Questionable refund policy
  • No TOR compatibility
  • No free trial
  • Best Price

    $2.25/month - 2 yrs plan

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  • Top Speed

    83.31Mbps

  • Servers

    55 Countries

  • Available on

The Bottom Line

Ivacy continues its slow but steady rise to prominence. A not-so-popular VPN, Ivacy is highly innovative and very inexpensive. It recently added a feature to bypass the Great Firewall.

The VPN service unblocks streaming services like Netflix, allows torrenting, and has a 24/7 live support to address user queries. Ivacy has a strong zero-logging policy and protects connections with an un-hackable encryption. It also has a built-in leak protection and a kill switch.

Ivacy allows users set up split tunneling – and was indeed one of the very first VPNs to offer this feature. This means users can choose which apps go through the VPN’s connection, and which ones go through an unencrypted connection.

The VPN service also allows up to five simultaneous connections, and its apps are available for MacOS, iOS, Windows, and Android. Its connection speeds can be a bit touch and go, though, and its low server count leaves you with limited options.

8. VyprVPN

  • Decent same-country speeds
  • Strong no-logs policy & no IP, WebRTC, and DNS leaks
  • Allows torrenting and P2P file sharing on all servers
  • Decent server network spread across 64 countries
  • Works with Netflix
  • Works in China
  • Apps are easy to use for Android, iOS, Mac and PC
  • Network speed can be unreliable
  • Online support is limited
  • Best features only available on ‘premium’ plan
  • Best Price

    £2.50/month - 24 months plan

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  • Top Speed

    83.05Mbps

  • Servers

    64 Countries

  • Available on

The Bottom Line

VyprVPN is one of the few top tier VPN services that provides internet support for users, which means that it does not rent but owns all of its servers. VyprVPN assures its users of fast, reliable speeds and excellent uptime – and tests prove that it meets those lofty standards.

Its Pro version has a proprietary “Chameleon” protocol designed to mask VPN traffic, making users’ online activity less susceptible to China’s Great Firewall technology. It’s a bit pricey, though, but users in China will be happy to know that the VPN service accepts from Alipay, a popular payment solution in China similar to PayPal.

VyprVPN offers a good number of server locations. There is also a live chat support feature, ensuring user queries can be addressed as quickly as possible.

Unfortunately, it is susceptible to the occasional downtime where it struggles to break through the nation’s firewall. While these have often been quickly resolved, it explains why the VPN appears lower on our list.

9. StrongVPN

  • Very fast and consistent VPN speeds
  • Compatible with Netflix and BBC iPlayer
  • Allows P2P and torrenting on all servers
  • Allows up to 12 simultaneous connections
  • Zero-logs policy
  • Works with popular devices and operating systems
  • Based in privacy-intrusive USA
  • Small server network
  • Best Price

    $5.83/month - 12 months plan

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  • Top Speed

    84.24Mbps

  • Servers

    224 Countries

  • Available on

The Bottom Line

One of the oldest VPN services in the world, StrongVPN remains a reliable source of protection online. For many years, it ranked highly amongst the best VPNs for China, but this has now changed as other VPNs have blazed past it.

StrongVPN remains a valuable asset, though. In recent times, it has improved its services, making it faster and more capable of breaking past Chinese restrictions.

However, the VPN’s website is not accessible from within China. If you intend using this VPN in China, you’d be best served downloading it before getting into China. You may find some success using proxy sites in China to download the VPN app, but there are no guarantees.

VPNs that Don’t Work in China

Not every VPN works in China. In fact, many VPNs that once worked in the country no longer do. Having tested hundreds of VPN, we’ve found some reliable services, but also some poor ones. While the list of poor VPNs is endless, some popular VPNs can be found there. These include:

  • CyberGhost
  • ZenMate
  • UltraVPN
  • IPVanish

Conclusion

Web censorship is a serious matter in China, making the use of the internet very frustrating for most travelers. Many popular apps and websites are blocked under China’s advanced online censorship system, known as the Great Firewall. This prevents users from accessing their favorite online content from within China. As a result, people have resorted to using VPNs (Virtual Private Networks) to bypass the internet censorship.

However, there has been a crackdown on VPNs in recent times by the Chinese government. Finding a VPN bypasses the Great Firewall and gives you access to blocked websites can be daunting. Therefore, you do not only need a VPN in China, but one that allows you maintain access to western apps, websites, and services.

Tip: The Chinese online censorship system also affects many VPN websites in the country, even for VPNs that work, so it is ideal to sign up to a VPN before your trip to China.

We have extensively tested a lot of VPNs in China in search of the best VPN services for China. Based on our performance tests, this article covers the best VPN services that are currently reliable in China.

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