7 Best VPNs for the UAE in 2024: Secure, Stable, & Fast

Updated on: May 23, 2024
Fact Checked by Eric Goldstein
Gjurgjica Panova Gjurgjica Panova
Updated on: May 23, 2024 Writer

Short on time? Here’s the best VPN for the UAE in 2024:

  • 🥇 ExpressVPN : It reliably works in the UAE, maintains blazing-fast speeds, and boasts advanced security features to safeguard user data. Plus, mirrored links are provided for those facing difficulties accessing the VPN's website within the UAE. Its plans are affordable and are covered by a 30-day money-back guarantee.

A VPN is the best way to secure your data in the United Arab Emirates. The government is known for its strict surveillance practices, and internet service providers (ISPs) in the country must store browsing data for 2 years. Since a VPN encrypts your internet traffic, no one can see which websites you visit or files you download — plus, you can use a VPN to bypass internet restrictions in the UAE.

While VPNs are legal in the UAE, it’s illegal to use them to access prohibited sites. If you get caught using a VPN to visit an illegal site, you could face a stiff fine or even prosecution. So, my team and I strongly encourage you to follow all local laws and regulations.

Unfortunately, not all VPNs are good for the UAE. Many VPNs don’t work in the country, have poor speeds, or don’t have any servers in or near the UAE. That’s why my team and I spent a few weeks testing dozens of VPNs to find the best ones for the UAE — the best one is ExpressVPN, as it has fast speeds and user-friendly apps.

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Quick summary of the best VPNs for the UAE:

  • 1. 🥇ExpressVPN — Best VPN for the UAE in 2024 (with obfuscation on all servers and the fastest speeds).
  • 2. 🥈Private Internet Access — Good VPN with highly customizable apps + strong privacy for safe browsing in the UAE.
  • 3. 🥉CyberGhost VPN — Solid VPN for those new to VPNs (with super intuitive apps and automation rules).
  • 4. NordVPN — Secure VPN with interactive server map and extra security features for the UAE.
  • 5. Surfshark — Intuitive VPN (with obfuscation feature for working in the UAE + IP Rotator).
  • Plus 2 More!

Note: VPN usage in the UAE is restricted. Neither I nor anyone at Safety Detectives condones using a VPN for activities that go against the law. We recommend following all local VPN regulations to avoid any legal issues.

🥇1. ExpressVPN — Best Overall VPN for the UAE

Approved by our experts
ExpressVPN
Approved by our experts
Most readers pick ExpressVPN
Servers in countries
105
Key Features
Industry-leading speeds
Number of devices
8
OS compatibility
Money-back guarantee
30 Days
expressvpn.com

ExpressVPN is the best VPN for the UAE. It reliably works in the UAE thanks to its obfuscated servers, which hide your VPN traffic and make it look like ordinary traffic. This helps all your traffic to go unnoticed by the UAE’s surveillance measures to block VPNs. While ExpressVPN doesn’t have servers in the UAE, it has servers in 105 countries, including locations near the UAE that don’t restrict the internet, like Israel and Cyprus.

The VPN’s customer support representatives recommend connecting to a server with its OpenVPN TCP protocol, which uses TCP port 443. This port also handles all HTTPS traffic, enabling access to any HTTPS site. It’s highly unlikely that a restrictive country, like the UAE, would block this port.

This provider also offers advanced security features, like RAM-only servers, which erase all data with each server reboot. This way, the VPN has no user data to share even if the UAE authorities request it. There’s also full leak protection against DNS, WebRTC, and IPv6 leaks, so your data remains anonymous.

🥇1. ExpressVPN — Best Overall VPN for the UAE

If you can’t visit the ExpressVPN site and download the VPN in the UAE, you can ask customer support for a mirrored link — these are copies of its site that use different URLs.

This VPN offers apps for most major devices, like Android, iOS, Windows, and macOS. They have passed independent security audits, proving they secure your data. In addition, ExpressVPN offers audited browser extensions for Chrome, Firefox, and Edge that encrypt your device’s entire traffic — I really like how they mask your device’s location by syncing your browser’s location data with the VPN server’s IP.

ExpressVPN’s plans start at $6.67 / month. Each plan has a 30-day money-back guarantee.

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Bottom Line:

ExpressVPN reliably works in the UAE thanks to its obfuscated servers — the VPN recommends connecting to the secure OpenVPN protocol. What’s more, it has servers in locations near the UAE and offers mirrored links for users who can’t access its website. Plus, you get secure apps for all of the popular operating systems as well as feature-rich browser extensions. All plans have a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Read the full ExpressVPN review

🥈2. Private Internet Access — Strong Security + Highly Customizable

Servers in countries
91
Key Features
Excellent ad blocker
Number of devices
Unlimited
OS compatibility
Money-back guarantee
30 Days
privateinternetaccess.com

Private Internet Access (PIA) is a secure pick for browsing the web in the UAE. It has obfuscation through an encrypted open-source proxy called Shadowsocks. This means that your traffic first gets obfuscated through the Shadowsocks server before it reaches the VPN server. So, your VPN traffic blends in with all other internet traffic, helping you avoid detection in the UAE — PIA has Shadowsocks servers in 5+ locations like israel and the UK. That said, I prefer ExpressVPN more, as it has automatic obfuscation on all servers.

I like that PIA allows you to create your own configuration files in its control panel. You can also select a specific server and port (like port 443) and connect directly to PIA’s server using a direct IP address. This also lets you adjust settings such as packet size to improve speed and stability while in the UAE.

The VPN offers advanced security features, including RAM-only servers and and full leak protection. It also has an Advanced Kill Switch feature — once you enable it, you won’t be able to browse online in the UAE unless you connect to the VPN.

🥈2. Private Internet Access — Strong Security + Highly Customizable

This VPN has servers in 91 countries, including the UAE. Moreover, it has a server network in less restrictive locations near the UAE, such as Israel, Cyprus, and Greece. This gives you plenty of server options to find the fastest server. Plus, you can connect to servers in these locations and access sites like Skype, WhatsApp, and Instagram, where the platforms are available.

You can get a mirrored link from PIA’s customer support if you can’t access the VPN site while in the UAE. The VPN also has 24/7 live chat, email support, and a helpful guide on connecting to a VPN in restrictive regions like the UAE.

Private Internet Access offers plans starting at $2.03 / month. Every plan is backed by a 30-day money-back guarantee.

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Bottom Line:

Private Internet Access is a secure VPN to use in the UAE. It uses the Shadowsocks proxy server to obfuscate your traffic and lets you connect to TCP port 443 with the OpenVPN protocol. Plus, it’s highly customizable and has advanced security features. The VPN includes servers in countries near the UAE and has multiple channels for support. All plans have a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Read the full Private Internet Access review

🥉3. CyberGhost VPN — Great for Users New to VPNs

Servers in countries
100
Key Features
Special streaming servers
Number of devices
7
OS compatibility
Money-back guarantee
Up to 45 days
cyberghostvpn.com

CyberGhost VPN comes with user-friendly apps that are perfect for beginners. Its Smart Rules feature lets you automate your connections. For example, you can configure the VPN to automatically connect you to a server in the UAE (or a nearby country) when you open the app, so you don’t accidentally go online without protecting your connection first. I also like that the VPN provides connection details, like your IP address and your upload/download speeds to help you find the best server.

I’m a big fan of CyberGhost’s NoSpy servers. They are located within the provider’s headquarters in Romania, meaning only CyberGhost VPN’s internal staff can access them. This prevents third parties, like the UAE authorities, from compromising your data.

🥉3. CyberGhost VPN — Great for Users New to VPNs

I like that CyberGhost VPN has multiple support channels, including live chat, email assistance, and helpful guides. You can check each of them if you have some questions or issues about the VPN for the UAE or ask for a mirrored link.

CyberGhost VPN’s plans start as low as $2.03 / month. Its long-term plans have a 45-day money-back guarantee and the monthly plan has a 14-day money-back guarantee.

CyberGhost: Save 84% on the 24-month plan + FREE months!
You can save 84% if you act right now.

Bottom Line:

CyberGhost VPN has beginner-friendly apps and is very secure. Its NoSpy servers add an extra layer of privacy. Thanks to its large server network, you’ll easily find servers near the UAE. Moreover, the VPN has various support channels and offers a 45-day money-back guarantee on the longest plan.

Read the full CyberGhost VPN review

4. NordVPN — Secure VPN With an Interactive Server Map

Servers in countries
111
Key Features
Great malware blocker
Number of devices
10
OS compatibility
Money-back guarantee
30 Days
nordvpn.com

NordVPN has high-end security features for the UAE. It has obfuscation on 100+ servers in 15+ countries with the OpenVPN protocol, which is very secure. This is decent but ExpressVPN allows obfuscation on all servers (and it’s even automatically enabled).

I really like the Double VPN feature, which routes your traffic through 2 VPN servers. The servers add 2 layers of encryption to your data, making it harder for the UAE authorities to intercept your traffic. The VPN also recommends using the OpenVPN or the NordLynx protocol if you face any connection issues in the UAE. This NordLynx protocol is designed to provide top security and excellent speeds.

4. NordVPN — Secure VPN With an Interactive Server Map

The VPN has an interactive server map that lets you use country pins to pick servers in the UAE or Israel. What’s more, you can also use location bubbles, which are really convenient since they also make it possible to connect to specific cities. With its server network in 111 countries, you’ll have plenty of server options to choose from near the UAE.

This provider has extensive FAQs and troubleshooting guides, email support, and 24/7 live chat. There’s also general info on different methods you can apply when connecting from a restrictive country like the UAE.

NordVPN has plans starting at $3.39 / month. All plans have a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Bottom Line:

NordVPN offers obfuscated servers and advanced security features for safe browsing in the UAE. It also has a Double VPN feature and its own proprietary protocol. Plus, the interactive server map makes it easy to connect to servers, and the VPN can quickly assist you with any issues. Each plan comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Read the full NordVPN review

5. Surfshark — Affordable VPN With a Decent Obfuscation Feature

Servers in countries
100
Key Features
User-friendly apps
Number of devices
Unlimited
OS compatibility
Money-back guarantee
30 Days
surfshark.com

Surfshark has an obfuscation feature called Camouflage Mode. This feature is automatically enabled when you use the OpenVPN protocol to connect to a VPN server. The customer support reps confirmed that it should work in the UAE.

I’m a big fan of Surfshark’s IP Rotator feature. It regularly changes your VPN IP address without dropping your VPN connection. This gives you more privacy and makes it very difficult for the UAE authorities to track your IP address.

5. Surfshark — Affordable VPN With a Decent Obfuscation Feature

The provider has super intuitive apps, so connecting to a server in the UAE (Dubai) or nearby in Israel or Cyprus is an issue. There’s also a search function to quickly find a server out of the 100 server options. Plus, you can add a widget to your home screen, so you can control your connection without opening the app.

This VPN comes with a great support library, with a guide on how to connect from countries with network restrictions. It guides you step by step with images on how to set up OpenVPN, and you can reach out to their customer support via their 24/7 live chat and email support.

Surfshark has affordable plans that start at $2.19 / month. Plus, every plan has a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Bottom Line:

Surfshark offers obfuscation through its Camouflage Mode feature. There’s also an IP Rotator feature, which changes the VPN IP addresses often. With its user-friendly apps, you should be able to navigate everything with ease. Plus, the VPN has excellent customer support. All plans come with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Read the full Surfshark review

6. Proton VPN — Free VPN With Unlimited Data for Browsing in the UAE

Servers in countries
91
Key Features
Audited open-source apps
Number of devices
10
OS compatibility
Money-back guarantee
30 Days
protonvpn.com

Proton VPN offers a great free plan that comes with unlimited data. This allows you to browse as much as you want in the UAE and allows you to access servers in 5 countries (in the US, Japan, the Netherlands, Romania, and Poland).

It’s also great that the free plan comes with an obfuscation feature through the proprietary protocol called Stealth. What’s more, the protocol is optimized for fast speeds.

Upgrading to the paid plan gets you access to 16 servers in the UAE and servers in 91 total countries.

6. Proton VPN — Free VPN With Unlimited Data for Browsing in the UAE

I like the Alternative Routing feature, which is designed to provide access to the VPN services in locations where it might be blocked. It uses third-party methods that are unlikely to get blocked, like Amazon Web Services (AWS). This gives you a better chance of connecting in the UAE if your ISP blocks VPNs.

The provider has a thorough library of support guides and a support form, plus a live chat (but only available to paid users and not available 24/7). There are guides on using a VPN in high-risk countries and the legality of VPNs.

Proton VPN has plans that start at $4.49 / month. All subscriptions have a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Bottom Line:

Proton VPN has a great free plan with unlimited data. It uses obfuscation through its proprietary protocol, Stealth. Plus, the VPN offers a decent server network in and near the UAE and an Alternative Routering feature if you can’t access its services in the UAE. There is helpful support but the live chat isn’t available around the clock. All plans have a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Read the full Proton VPN review

7. PrivateVPN — Minimalistic VPN With A Great Obfuscation Feature

Servers in countries
63
Key Features
Works in restrictive nations
Number of devices
10
OS compatibility
Money-back guarantee
30 Days
privatevpn.com

PrivateVPN’s obfuscation feature, Stealth VPN, reliably works in the UAE, as confirmed by its customer support. The VPN also supports the OpenVPN protocol, which is very secure and works in the UAE. While it offers WireGuard protocol, it’s only through manual setups.

7. PrivateVPN — Minimalistic VPN With A Great Obfuscation Feature

The VPN’s apps are very simple to navigate. There’s a Simple View, which is great for beginners, as it keeps customization options to a minimum. The Advanced View is good for experienced users who want to have more control over the default settings.

I don’t like that Private VPN only has servers in 63 countries, which is fewer server options than what every VPN on this list offers. That said, the server network is evenly spread out across the globe, including servers in the UAE (Dubai).

This provider has very responsive and knowledgeable live chat reps — they quickly answered all my inquiries about using the VPN in the UAE. Plus, it has support via email and a wide range of FAQs.

PrivateVPN has plans starting at $2.00 / month. Each plan comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Bottom Line:

PrivateVPN has a great obfuscation feature that works in the UAE. Its apps are suitable for both, beginners and advanced users. The VPN has a small server network but it comes with servers in the UAE. Plus, the customer support is knowledgeable and quick. All plans have a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Read the full PrivateVPN review

Quick Comparison Table

VPN Starting Price Obfuscation Method Protocols Available Number of Servers (Countries) Number of Connections Money-Back Guarantee
🥇1. ExpressVPN $6.67 / month Obfuscated servers Lightway

OpenVPN

IKEv2/IPSec

105 Up to 8 30 days
🥈2. Private Internet Access $2.03 / month Shadowsocks proxy servers WireGuard

OpenVPN

IKEv2/IPSec

91 Unlimited 30 days
🥉3. CyberGhost VPN $2.03 / month None OpenVPN

WireGuard

IKEv2/IPSec

100 7 45 days

(on long-term plans)

4. NordVPN $3.39 / month Obfuscated servers OpenVPN

NordLynx

111 10 30 days
5. Surfshark $2.19 / month Camouflage Mode OpenVPN

WireGuard

IKEv2/IPSec

100 Unlimited 30 days
6. Proton VPN $4.49 / month Stealth WireGuard

IKEv2/IPSec OpenVPN

Stealth

91 10 30 days
7. Private VPN $2.00 / month Stealth VPN OpenVPN IKEv2/IPSec L2TP/IPSec

PPTP

WireGuard

63 10 30 days

Testing Methodology: Comparison & Ranking Criteria

I used our proven testing methodology to ensure that I only recommend the best VPNs for the UAE. I made my choices based on security features, server networks in the UAE, customer support, and more. Here are the criteria to pick and rank the best VPN for the UAE:

  • I made sure the VPN works in the UAE. I only recommend VPNs that consistently work in the UAE. I confirmed this confirmation with each VPN’s customer support. All the VPNs on this list have servers in locations near the UAE. Plus, some of them have servers in the UAE.
  • I looked at security and privacy features. The VPNs on this list come with industry-standard VPN security features, such as 256-bit AES encryption, leak protection, a no-logs policy, and a kill switch that disconnects you from the internet if your VPN connection drops. There are also advanced security features like RAM-only servers.Testing Methodology: Comparison & Ranking Criteria
  • I considered fast speeds. All VPNs slow down your speeds due to the encryption process. So, I tested the VPNs while connected to local and distant servers. Plus, I tested them with obfuscation enabled to ensure that your speeds don’t get slowed down significantly.Testing Methodology: Comparison & Ranking Criteria
  • I looked for ease of use. I tested the desktop and mobile apps to ensure they have an intuitive interface. Plus, the obfuscation feature is easy to enable.
  • I confirmed value for money. I ensured that the VPNs allow multiple simultaneous connections and have excellent customer support. I also checked for affordable plans with generous money-back guarantees.

Top Brands That Didn’t Make the Cut

  • IPVanish. IPVanish is a secure, easy-to-use VPN with fast speeds. However, its obfuscation feature doesn’t reliably work in restrictive countries, such as the UAE.
  • Windscribe. Windscribe is an intuitive VPN, but it doesn’t come with an obfuscation feature. In addition, its no-logs policy hasn’t been independently audited, so it isn’t as trustworthy as those on my list.
  • VyprVPN. VyprVPN comes with an obfuscation feature but its customer support isn’t responsive and knowledgeable enough if you need help connecting in the UAE.

Frequently Asked Questions

What’s the best VPN for the UAE?

ExpressVPN is the best VPN for the UAE, as it has an obfuscation feature that reliably bypasses detection in the UAE. Plus, it has advanced security features, multiple servers near the UAE, and intuitive apps.

What’s the best free VPN for the UAE?

Proton VPN has a great free plan that offers unlimited data. Plus, the free plan comes with an obfuscation feature. What’s more, the paid version gives access to servers in and near the UAE and has decent customer support.

Is it illegal to use a VPN in the UAE?

The use of VPNs in the UAE is legal. However, it’s illegal to use a VPN for accessing blocked sites, social media apps like Instagram, and VolP apps like WhatsApp. We recommend following all rules and regulations to avoid any legal fines.

How do I set up a VPN in the UAE?

Setting up a VPN in the UAE is pretty straightforward. It only requires a few steps:

  • Choose a quality VPN. I recommend ExpressVPN, as it reliably works in the UAE. It has advanced security features, obfuscated servers, and user-friendly apps.
  • Download and install the VPN app. Make sure to follow the on-screen instructions and the process will be completed in just 2 minutes. If you can’t access the VPN’s site, you can contact the VPN’s customer reps to provide you with a mirrored link.
  • Open the VPN app and connect to a server. Scroll through the server list and connect to a server in or near the UAE.

Quick Overview of My Top Recommendations:

Our Rank
Our Score
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9.8
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9.6
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3
9.4
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4
9.2
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5
9.0
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About the Author
Gjurgjica Panova
Updated on: May 23, 2024

About the Author

Gjurgjica is a cybersecurity writer who is driven by her passion for the written word and anything tech-related. When she is not in the role of a Safety Detective, she can be found wrapped in a comfy blanket, binge-watching her favorite shows.