Best VPNs for China

4 Best VPNs for China

If you are traveling to China, you will have technical issues trying to access your favorite websites online. China uses a strict firewall called the Great Firewall of China, which is funny if you ask us. Jokes apart, this sensor blocks sites like Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, Gmail, and several thousand other websites.

Your solution? An excellent VPN to get around the firewall.

Best VPNs for China

Due to its strict policies, China has forced people to look into alternate ways of accessing their favorite sites online. They do so with the best VPNs for China, known for their service.

We cannot stress enough the importance of using reliable paid VPN services in China for surfing online with ease. Here, we have assembled a list for you to choose from.

1- ExpressVPN

  • Best for high speed
  • Based on the British Virgin Island
  • 148+ VPNs in 94 Countries
  • 30-day money-back guarantee
  • Speed-optimized network
  • Apps available for Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Linux, Blackberry
  • VPN Apps for all devices

ExpressVPN is at the top of the list of best VPNs worldwide, which means it is also popular with people in China. Other VPNs have had trouble bypassing the strict firewall of China, but ExpressVPN has effortlessly bypassed it. In addition, it provides users with thousands of servers acworldwideincluding in Hong Kong, Japan, and Taiwan. South Korea, Vietnam, and Thailand. These servers increase the overall speed of ExpressVPN.

ExpressVPN has deployed its “stealth” VPN server in Hong Kong to fight against China Firewall, which makes it more reliable than other VPN services.

2 – NordVPN

  • High-security standards
  • Military-grade encryption
  • Cost-effective
  • 30-Day Money Back Guarantee
  • Apps available for Windows, Mac, Android, iOS
  • Round-the-clock customer support available in Chinese
  • 11 servers in Japan and 14 servers in Hong Kong

NordVPN personally does not have any servers located in China, which can lead people to believe it might not work as well, but the truth is the complete opposite. Due to the lack of servers in China, NordVPN is the only China VPN that isn’t on the Chinese government’s radar, reducing its chances of being blocked.

3 – VyprVPN

  1. 700 servers all around the globe
  2. One of the fastest VPNs due to self-owned servers (no 3rd parties)
  3. Chameleon protocol to defeat China Firewall (not available for iOS)
  4. It can be purchased within China
  5. Apps available for Windows, Mac, Android, iOS
  6. 30-day money-back guarantee and 3-day Free Trial

VyprVPN falls under the category of the few VPNs that do function within China. The brand prides itself on offering users the Chameleon VPN protocol, which protects data from deep packet inspection. But you must know that the iOS client does not provide the Chameleon feature.

4 – PrivateVPN

  • Can bypass firewalls through L2TP
  • Servers in Hong Kong (over 100 servers in 56 countries)
  • Zero logging policy
  • Apps available for Windows, Mac, Android, iOS
  • 30-day refund policy
  • 6 simultaneous connections

While this VPN might not provide all of its competitors’ features, it can bypass China’s firewall with the L2TP VPN protocol. If you need access to basic websites that you love socializing or online streaming through, this VPN is your answer.

Why Do I Need a VPN in China?

Why Do I Need a VPN in China?

China’s citizens suffer the wrath of the Great Wall of China and only get access to severely geographically restricted content online. In recent years, China has cracked down on several VPNs worldwide. It can be referred to as the Netflix of VPN detectors, which makes it almost impossible to crack. The operative keyword is almost here. This is where VPNs come into play.

The best VPNs for China we have mentioned in this review are only the few that can function in China and offer you access to restricted online content. If you are visiting China, you will find it challenging to work without accessing basic websites like Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, and Gmail. After all, that even eliminates the possibility of contacting others through email! A VPN is required for someone visiting China now or shortly. Doing your research before visiting the country is essential so you aren’t dumbfounded in the face of severe content censorship.

What Can I Unblock With a VPN in China?

What is interesting is that China’s censorship doesn’t focus as heavily on domestic content as it is mainly concerned with preventing residents of China from accessing international content. Following is a list of websites currently blocked for use in China that you can easily use one of the VPNs we have listed to unblock.

WebsiteCurrent Status in China
Google servicesAll services are blocked
YoutubeOnly Available in cities Haikou and Sanya
FacebookOnly Available in cities Haikou and Sanya
TwitterOnly Available in cities Haikou and Sanya

What You Need to Know About VPNs in China Before You Travel

What You Need to Know About VPNs in China Before You Travel

In 2017, the Chinese government declared that it would be blocking all the VPNs in the following year. Though this hasn’t happened to every VPN available, a few vigilant ones still stand tall regardless of the continued crackdown on VPNs in China.

  1. You need to know a few things about VPNs in China before you decide to enter the country. We will list a few of them for you.
  2. China has blocked almost every VPN on the Apple App Store.
  3. In order to use a VPN in China, you need to download a VPN on your desktop device or phone before you enter the country so that you can use it.
  4. Not all VPNs function in China, which is why you may need to sign up with a few beforehand.
  5. Due to the strict rules in China regarding internet use, using a VPN is going to be dangerous whether or not you get away with it.

What is the Great Firewall?

This is the name given to China’s advanced internet censorship system. This project was officially called the Golden Shield Project but later changed to China’s Great Firewall. This allows authorities to not only monitor but also restrict access to international content all over China with the help of web IP blocking, deep packet inspection, URL filtering, keyword filtering, DNS tampering, and manual enforcement when necessary.

VPN vs GFW: Ongoing Battle

VPN vs GFW: Ongoing Battle

For the citizens of China, the use of a VPN has become a daily necessity that trumps everything else. The Great Firewall of China is quite effective and tampers with VPN services by disabling them. Still, the VPN services prevail in the face of such disturbances and emerge victorious, like the VPNs we have listed for you earlier.

You must remember that even then, all VPNs get blocked by the GFW every now and then. As you can see from the comments posted on Shanghai or Beijing ex-pat forums, no VPN is perfect for the GFW, but regardless, they are trying. China is a worthy adversary in the face of all things VPN.

The GFW uses a variety of strategies to detect and block VPN servers. One of these methods is deep packet inspection, in which traffic is inspected as it passes through local ISP servers to see popular VPN protocols such as OpenVPN. Top VPNs like ExpressVPN, NordVPN, VyprVPN, and PrivateVPN scramble these data packets to make it almost impossible to detect whether a VPN protocol is being used or not, which is why we have suggested them to you.

Are VPNs Legal in China?

Are VPNs Legal in China?

The use of a VPN wouldn’t entirely be referred to as illegal in China, as much as it is frowned upon. There hasn’t been a single case of an arrest in China due to VPN use. The authorities want to limit content and censor, not punish citizens.

In recent years, we have come across so many headlines that suggest that VPNs aren’t legal. Though the Chinese government has issued notices to ban VPNs, they don’t convict people who use VPNs regardless of it. The information doesn’t state that VPNs are illegal; it just says that for any VPN to operate within China, it needs government approval, which is not a possible step that any VPN wants to take. Giving in to the government and making some deal with it would compromise the security of a VPN’s clients. Soon, the government will request that a VPN keep data logs, which would defy the whole purpose of using a VPN to maintain anonymity online in the first place.

Final Thoughts

We know how important it has become to maintain online anonymity these days. Major companies and governments using user data without permission for their benefit is never a good thing. Then how can geographically-restricted content be any better? Though the Great Firewall of China may be vigilant in eradicating and blocking VPNs all over the country, several VPNs have thrived away from the microscope. The VPNs we have listed for you in this post will help you understand which ones you need to subscribe to before you plan a trip to China.

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Syed Humza Hussain is an IT student completing his degree in computer studies; He is working at CriticInfo as a Publishing Manager.

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