The Best VPN For China (Updated December 2014)


In A Nutshell

The internet blocks that the Chinese government implements seems to change daily. Even if you use the VPNs listed below, you may find that your connections are blocked in some circumstances.

We currently recommend these providers as the best VPNs for China:

  • ExpressVPN: Servers in Hong Kong and the US West Coast. Many apps available. They have a 30 days “no quibble” money-back offer. Accepts Unionpay, Alipay, Webmoney, Paysafecard, CashU and others.
  • VPN.AC: They have many optimization for Chinese users (including the ability to make OpenVPN traffic appear as normal SSL traffic), and they have three servers in Hong Kong, one in Singapore and three on the US West Coast, with peering with China Telecom and China Unicom.
  • 12VPN: Headquartered in Hong Kong, and they have experience with the Great Firewall, many Chinese customers. 7 day money back policy. But no P2P downloading/torrenting.

If you need a very robust connection in China, and don’t mind getting technical see this article How To Hide OpenVPN Connections In China.

The Details

The easiest way to bypass Chinese Firewall is to use a VPN that serves China. A VPN or “virtual private network” is a service that encrypts and redirects all your internet connections. The Chinese government has never stated that using a VPN to circumvent the Great Firewall is illegal, and nobody has been prosecuted for using a VPN. Despite this, China blocks the websites of most major VPNs.

When in China, you want to connect to  a VPN server in Asia (e.g. in China, Hong Kong, Bangkok). The next best option is to connect to a server on the West Coast of the US (e.g. Los Angeles, San Francisco).

Which VPN Protocols To Use?

  • OpenVPN: Strangely, this is the least reliable protocol/client to use — you’ll find most ports are currently blocked (connection reset). The main cause appears to be spoofed RST packets.
  • L2TP: This is a fast protocol for China and currently it works quite well
  • PPTP: Use only if L2TP doesn’t work for you — slower and less reliable than L2TP
  • SSTP: Establishes a connection over secure HTTPS (Port 443) — this allows clients to securely access networks behind NAT routers, firewalls and web proxies, without the concern for typical port blocking issues

For a more details on hiding your VPN connections from Deep Packet Inspection, see my article How To Hide Your VPN Connections In China, Iran, United Arab Emerites, Oman and Pakistan.

Here are more details on the best VPN to use in China:


Note: The ExpressVPN.Com domain was blocked in China on September 22. However, the links to ExpressVPN below are smart links, that will correctly to the ExpressVPN website in China.

ExpressVPN is optimized for China — it has servers Hong Kong and the US West Coast. They offer a “no quibble” 30-day money back offer. They are slightly more expressive than other VPNs, but worth if you need a reliable network. The monthly rate is $12.95.

ExpressVPN recently launched Paymentwall as a new payment method. It allows local payments like Unionpay, Alipay, Webmoney, Paysafecard, CashU and others. This will help customers in countries like China, where not everyone has an international credit card or a Paypal account.


VPN.AC has three servers in Hong Kong, one in Singapore and three on the US West Coast, with peering with China Telecom and China Unicom.

They have optimizations for China, including a recently rolled out Obfuscation for OpenVPN. Here are the details:

Obfuscating the OpenVPN protocol makes it look like regular SSL traffic — making it harder to be blocked by Firewalls with DPI capabilities relying on protocol signatures to identify known VPN protocols. This is the case in China, where default OpenVPN implementations are blocked almost immediately. While our AES 256-bit implementation is still stealthy and working in China, we added one more protocol-type to bypass the GFW. It runs on several ports including TCP port 443 (HTTPS), replacing an instance of OpenVPN Blowfish 128-bit we used with port TCP/443. With this method, the handshake packets are obfuscated so it’s not possible to identify the traffic as being part of an OpenVPN tunnel. Encryption relies on RSA 4096-bit + ECDHE for key-exchange, AES 128-bit for data channel.

VPN.AC accepts Chinese-friendly payments such as Alipay and Unionpay. They also accept Paypal, BitCoin, CashU, Paysafecard and UKash.


Update: The Chinese DNS is now blocking the domain name “”, if you are in China you can use “” instead.

12VPN are headquartered in Hong Kong, and they have experience with the Great Firewall. They also have a huge Chinese user-base. 12VPN gives you the choice of four server locations for OpenVPN, all of them based in the UK and US. The West Coast of the US is the best choice if your are in China, due its (relative) proximity to Asia. 12VPN provides you with a file of pre-configured settings for the to use with the OpenVPN app (Windows), or the Tunnelblick app (Mac OS X). You simply drop these in the correct location (as 12VPN’s site wiki explains very clearly) on your computer.

12VPN‘s service cost $9.95 per month or $79 per year. They accept Credit cards, Bitcoin, Paypal, CashU, AliPay, PerfectMoney, Skrill.

More Info

Just as a side note, whatever VPN service you’re using, you’ll still have problems if you’re using a Chinese DNS server (ie, your local ISP provided DNS server). China love to mess with DNS and implements a lot of filtering through their DNS servers, returning bad data or no data at all for a lot of requests. If your computer is using Chinese DNS servers, you’re gonna have a bad time.

You can check what DNS servers you are using here:

If you’re still using a Chinese DNS, change your DNS settings to use either the servers provided by your VPN, or one of the many public DNS servers. I recommend the following:

Google DNS:


Open DNS:


If just want to browse the uncensored internet in the short term, you can use the free Tor Browser. Note that, while using Tor, your web page will be somewhat slow to load, and your other internet connections will still be blocked. Also, make sure you use a Tor Bridge.

Websites That Currently Blocked

Website Name Block Status Website Address
Google Docs BLOCKED
Google Drive BLOCKED
Facebook BLOCKED
Blogspot BLOCKED
Internet Movie Database BLOCKED
Technorati BLOCKED
Wikileaks BLOCKED
Amnesty International BLOCKED
Reporters Without Borders BLOCKED
Falun Dafa BLOCKED


  1. Jeremy says

    It seems that works well in China. Their customer service helped me get it working again after OpenVPN was also blocked recently (I had to make a simple change). I can also connect with PPTP on my iPad but this can sometimes be blocked though. I haven’t tried the new OpenVPN app on iPad yet, but will definitely give it a try as it should also work with CitizenVPN.

  2. Estebanero says


    I am disappointed in some of the most popular VPN’s for Asia as even for e.g. StrongVPN I have recently cancelled a subscription since the minute after I paid and registered my account on the opening page they announced that they were having problems reaching Facebook from China. They then recommended to go into a separate set of settings to try and bypass this.

    Ideally a reliable VPN service should straight forward give you the situation and make it clear what is the situation. Further it was rather complex to handle and when logging my ticket to unsubscribe it took 2 weeks to get a reply.

    I am hence now looking into a VPN Router for China so I bypass the complete Client Setup and can subscribe all my Network Connected devices. Any recommendation you may be able to share for VPN Routers? I know Astrill has them but you mentioned that their Customer service was poor so I am a bit uncertain now.


    • andy doglas says

      its true that u cannot open such web like youtube or facebook by only use VPN swich, most web block system in china is blacklist block , so even use software to change ur VPN, is the same result. you need find a subcontractor of CMCC or CT or CU, they will have their private band width its much more secure and stable compare to the VPN software. but its little bit expensive for individuals but its really handy for business.

  3. GreyOne says

    Also, if you haven’t already, you should use an alternate DNS instead of the default from your ISP. This is because China sometimes uses DNS Poisoning as a part of their blocking process.

    To do this, do as follows : (This is for Windows 7 users. WinXP users should have to follow a similar process. Just find your main connection properties. Mac users, try to Google where OSX users can find their connection properties. Sorry but I know close to nothing about Macs, I’m one of those guys that rebel it with a passion just because).

    Open “Network and Sharing Center”

    Open your current connected network’s status window (not the VPN network, your main network)

    Open “Properties”

    Double-click “Internet Protocol Version 4 (TCP/IPv4)”

    Both IP and DNS should be automatic by default. Leave IP alone.

    For DNS, choose “Use the following DNS Server Address”.

    Use one of these DNS servers to fill in the blanks (or any you might know of and trust more, I just know these. I use Google’s since I figure they’re probably the fastest and most reliable) :

    Google DNS :
    Preferred DNS Server :
    Alternate DNS Server :

    StrongVPN DNS :

    Preferred DNS Server :

    Alternate DNS Server :

    If you had some instability issues before and were using default DNS, this will probably help.

  4. JonoR says

    I’ve had a lot of sucess using EzyVPN. The speed’s are very good when I travel to china and I have set up on my iphone too. They also offer a free trial. Recommended A+

  5. rain says

    Just a note that I’m in China now and as of Feb 2014, cannot access Private Internet Access.

    Also, 2 vpns that seems to work and not listed here are: Astrill VPN and Vypr. Would love to hear what you think of those two.

    • houston says

      Astrill is good. Unicom has increased their Net speed. They now offer 20/20 cable net. I have used punchvpn routers ( with Astrill service. Works great. I can use one astrill account and share the net from three different locations (my home, my office and my restaurant) including my cell phone and I have to pay for only single account. The router has remote access feature which allows the VPN account to be shared when you are away from home, even in different city. Another problem you will face when using VPN in China is that the VPN servers will go slow periodically. i.e the same server working good when you connected, runs slow after an hour. Punchvpn router has this cool feature that it can track the speed of vpn servers using latency and bandwidth measurements. If a server goes slow, the router will auto switch to next best server. This is specially useful feature when you are away from home using cell phone. The router takes care of finding the best server so I can stream videos over youtube without lags. My last test using Astrill and Unicom 20/20 was awesome. I got 20/20 speed with one of the astrill servers. Which means I can watch 1080p videos without buffering problems.

    • says

      I don’t recommend Astril because their service is unreliable, especially recently. Slow customer support, and they require a phone number during registration. ExpressVPN is better for example.

      All that Astril has going for them is that they are one of the oldest private VPN providers.

  6. Ron says

    I am sitting in China right now and using Unicom with Astrill and I can watch Full HD1080p video on youtube without lags. I dont know of any other VPN provider who is offering this kind of speed in China. Most of them just try to make you happy with 3 Mbps download speeds. 1080p requires download speed close to 10 Mbps.

    • says

      I’m glad you are getting good throughput from Astrill. I asked them to fix a simple issue on my test account last month, and they never provided an answer or closed the ticket. I can’t recommend a VPN provider with such poor customer support. I’m sure the other VPN providers mention in the article can match Astrill’s speed.

    • Kristin says

      HI Ron , can you tell what exact r you using cause i have tryed a lot of VPNs and no of them can open normaly page and watching video

    • Rick says

      Astrill has a very long history of planting comments as well. Check other reviews of astrill and the second something is mentioned, some guy pops up with semi-fluent English talking about how awesome and fast it is. I’m sure they have Google alerts set up to do this.

  7. masgarro says

    Can I ask Ron and the others, what server are you using on Astrill?
    I’m trying different ones, but seems I can’t find the ideal one
    USA (Denver) or Hong Kong?

    • chowder says

      I have been using Astrill for 2 years now, just recently having issues with connection from China as well. I am also wondering which server do you guys connect to to get an ideal speed. I have tried LA 1~4, denver, Dallas1, even tried HK / Japan servers but they are all slow…

      I live in Shanghai.

      • Multi-VPN user says

        Same here. I live in Shanghai. Astrill was reliable and fast at the beginning, then many servers stopped responding and became very very slow, especially servers in Asia. The “OpenWeb” feature is still working fine at the moment (it allows most browsers to connect through VPN, but it cannot be used for others applications/protocols such FTP, messenger, Skype, etc.), while Open VPN does not work at all. Stealth VPN (which cost an extra…) is not so efficient. Some servers on US west coast are working, but not all of them. The speed test feature provided by Astrill application does not work properly, so it’s hard to find the right server. Astrill has also several interesting options (NAT firewall, etc.) but they’re all a bit expensive.

        Something more disturbing with Astrill: privacy policy is not clear at all and they ask for a real cell phone number to let you register (you need to receive a code by cell phone text message to complete your registration)… Not exactly what you would expect from a service protecting your anonymity & privacy.

  8. Morgan says

    I’m using ExpressVPN from Beijing… and I’ve found that connecting to their Japan server is way faster than their HK and LA servers! Just a tip to anyone in Beijing muddling about :)

  9. says

    I am currently living in Shanghai for 2 years. The VPN i am curently using Strongvpn. It works quite well but the connectivity not as fast like before. You could use sf77 which works more stabilized recently. Thus, i also found another VPN called VYPR VPN, they found a new protocol “Chameleon” which would have higher security to hide most of your online traffic while using this connection.

    • says

      Thanks for posting the info.

      I left out VyprVPN because they ask for your bank info during registration. I also did not enjoy my interactions with their customer service representatives. They declined comments about privacy. They also lock your account immediately if you get a DMCA notice.

      • says

        I have to agree with the horrible customer service at VyprVPN. I signed up for a 3 day trial and they locked my account within 1 day — without telling me — because I didn’t answer some security email questions they never sent me.

        I wasted an entire day trying to troubleshoot my computer before contacting them and being told my account was suspended. I told them I never received their security questions so please send them if you need to but don’t charge my credit card (my 3 day trial was getting eaten up).

        Customer service writes back and says they will “escalate” the issue to a superior. Really frustrated, I said go ahead and “escalate” and ask “questions” but don’t charge my credit card.

        Some dick wrote back and they declined to open my account.

        What jerks. Avoid VyprVPN — there are much better companies who are friendly and helpful, and who appreciate their customers.

  10. says

    I’ve had quite a few problems personally with Astrill and I know many others who have as well. They have a good thing going, but their customer service has been terrible.

    ExpressVPN and 12VPN have worked beautifully for me. I actually did video reviews of each of these that I think you and those reading this might find useful – adds a visual element to what you read here:

    Hope that helps. Great to read some honest reviews here. Thanks Greyone!

  11. Eric says

    I’ve bounced back and forth between Astril, Express, and Strong VPN, and recently came back to Express. Except during heavy internet lock down periods, I find it to be reliable and fast. But, they could really stand to add more bandwidth in HK (the fastest for me when its not over loaded, but unusable during peak times).

    • says

      I’m not impressed by VPNinja. When I clicked to sign up, it told me I had nothing in my shopping cart. I assume because I’m blocking cookies. Cookies should only be required to login. Also, your website has errors on it like this:

      strict warning: Non-static method view::load() should not be called statically in /home/vpninja/drupal_home/sites/all/modules/views/views.module on line 906.
      strict warning: Declaration of views_handler_filter::options_validate() should be compatible with views_handler::options_validate($form, &$form_state) in /home/vpninja/drupal_home/sites/all/modules/views/handlers/ on line 607.
      strict warning: Declaration of views_handler_filter::options_submit() should be compatible with views_handler::options_submit($form, &$form_state) in /home/vpninja/drupal_home/sites/all/modules/views/handlers/ on line 607.

      • Tony Luce says

        Sounds like you had a bad experience with VPNinja – which is rare. Great customer support and an office in Shanghai.

  12. Derik says

    i just arrived china 5days ago and found out i cant access to many websites not even to Google. its kinda weird. so i want to know which is the best vpn that i can use for free when i am here in china.

  13. Eddie says

    Funny. ExpressVPN isn’t working for me AT ALL. Unable to connect to any of their servers. I’d call this article a big lie. I’m still waiting for their refund. Will update on that in a couple of days.

      • Anonymous says

        Funny (again). That’s exactly what I did and the solution they offered? Refund, as they cannot figure out a way to make it work.

        • says

          I sorry the VPN did not work out for your configuration. I’m glad they gave you full refund, as per their policy.

          However, calling my article a lie is misguided, because ExpressVPN has many happy customers using the service in China.

        • Amelia says

          I use ExpressVPN and have been really happy with it. I initially had problems connecting via UDP/TCP (i.e. I couldn’t connect to ANY of their servers, or, when I did connect, I couldn’t load any sites). So I would stick to L2TP and PPTP which was kinda slow.

          When I’d finally had enough, I got in touch w/ customer service on livechat, they walked me through how to update my computer’s DNS servers (from my ISP’s to Google’s + OpenVPN) and now I can use TCP/UDP just fine :D :D :D

          Anyway I’m interested in hearing what your issue was!! That sucks that it happened to you. But at the same time, I just wanted to weigh in and let people know that, as someone in Beijing, I’ve had a great experience w/ them.

          And like Morgan said on 4/23, the Japan server is the fastest! (Though they recently added a Taiwan one, which also gives me really good speeds).

  14. L.Poulin says

    I am very unhappy today to be honest, I am very upset.

    I decided to try Astrill as a VPN and I thought that it would be easy to install and use even though I am not technically incline.

    I had some issue with the installation therefore I contacted the online support. I spoke with Anna, Eva and Ted.

    Due to the issue with the installation, a support personnel took over my computer using a remote control.

    Upon resolving my issue with Astrill another issue arose and they did not want to take responsibility.

    I was left to deal with it on my own without any assistance. The issue was that they changed my desktop image. It was no longer there and my desktop went black. A friend installed when I live in Canada because I am not technically incline.

    I kept asking them to return my setting to the original one but they refused telling me that it was not them who did it.

    Who could have change my setting? I was not in control when they used the remote control. They were in control. I just sat and watch.

    They kept asking me many technical questions to which I was not able to answer and when I asked for the name of their supervisor, I was getting no answer, I got no where or all of a sudden they could no longer help me.

    Who change my original setting? Who?

    There were only two people involved here, Astrill and myself. I did not touch the computer because they needed access. Therefore who changed my setting?

    I am extremely displease and upset with the way Aprill dealt with me.

    I asked several times Anna (over 20 times) for her superior and got no where. She made up excuses and even terminated our conversation with chat.

    This is not right, you do not go around and change the configuration of people’s computer while assisting them.

    At no point, was an effort made to resolve this second issue created by Astrill.

    I am extremely disappointed in the way this was handle, very unprofessional upon their part and I was the one to be blame for their error.

  15. Jhon Mere says

    Thanks for publishing this article, Recently I will be traveling in china for few months . I cant able to access Google and youtube , then I have gone though this article and get to know if I use VPN , they I can access all of the sites . Now I am using expressvpn but still facing many issues as a new user. Should I switch to, have seen good reviews .Admin please help me

  16. nick says

    Based on reading the comments it sounds like ExpressVPN is the way to go in Beijing? The wife and I are headed to China, and she’ll be living there for 5 months. She’s running Max OSX Mountain Lion, any issues? If we have issues will their support help us resolve them. Can I access their and other VPN sites while in China, or is it something I should try and purchase before we come? Thanks so much for the great article and discussion all!!

    • John says

      @nick, I use ExpressVPN on my Mac, Android tablet, and iPhone. It’s a lot easier if you buy it before coming, as most VPN’s primary domains seem to be blocked here (i.e. is blocked but I can go to .co, and is blocked but I can access .ws etc.).

      Their Mac app is really easy to use and live chat is helpful. There seems to always be someone online and I’ve never had to wait longer than 1 min for help. Connectivity in China can be really finicky, VPNed or not, but I’m pretty happy with my subscription after having tried numerous others.

  17. says

    Hi All –

    We run a VPN service, basically trying to make a decent service that users can have some control over what they get, we’re all about support and feedback to improve.

    Anyways theres a 3 day free trial if you want to give us a go.

    This comment will probably be deleted for advertising but I’m not going to do what everyone else does and pretend to be a user saying my service is great – it is though :-)


  18. says

    We like ClearVPN, their support is always helpful and can usually come up with a solution if you have any issues to get your up and running in the 7 day free trial period. If not they will cancel your account and honer their full refund policy.

  19. asajji says

    I tested and whilst in China last week and they both worked great!

    VPNArea is disappointing …

    Hope this info will help anyone going to China soon.

    Please get your vpn before you go there.

  20. Michael says

    Greetings all —

    As a long term China resident, I’ve been through the ringer with various VPNs. Express failed in December 2012 (seems they may have recovered), Strong started having issues in late 2013 (connections compromised, it seems), and now it appears that Astill is suffering from a similar fate. I’m guessing that DPI is root cause here — and would like to know whether there may be a reliable VPN service out there that addresses the DPI capability underlying the Great Fire Wall.

    For specifics, I keep getting “sub route” notes in my log file for my current VPN, and the extended DNS test does show, among many, a Shanghai Telecom server.

    All thoughts and comments welcome!

  21. xNinjaCatx says

    I have lived in Beijing for the past five years and have been using PandaPow VPN. They have servers all over the world, US East/West, UK, Singapore, Hong Kong etc… Connection speeds are quite decent too. Price wise, it’s at $84 per year, or $9 per month and $24 for three months. Here is the link to their website:

    Note: yes, it’s .co, not .com. They did this on purpose to avoid getting blocked in China.

  22. Philipp K says

    Hi all,
    thank you for the review and thanks to all that have spent time and effort on comments – very helpfull to get a qualitative picture.

    However I have no clue what to do with someone writing “works well” or “great connection”. For people using their internet connection on forums and websites such as this one an up/download speed of 200/200 kbps may be considered “great” but for a techie like myself, who had the fastest possible internet connection money can buy at home its painfully slow.

    Never state a problem without a solution. So here is mine: To make all these quantitative comments a little more usefull. do the following:

    1. go to the VPN you currently use and go to this website
    2. VERY important to level the playing field – DO NOT use the automatically chosen server for the test, but this one: US, San Francisco server, Hosted by Monkey Brains.
    3. post your result like this: YOUR ISP – TESTED VPN: PING/DOWNLOAD SPEED/UPLOAD SPEED

    This test will show how well your connection ACTUALLY performs.

    Here my result:
    Unicom – VyprVPN: 177ms/0.39Mbps/5.02Mbps

  23. says

    Hi everyone.
    I travel to Shanghai every year for a month.
    In the past, I could just use any HK VPN to avoid the Golden Shield (Great Firewall of China).
    By 2013 it was already quite difficult to keep a VPN on. The connection would drop often.
    Right now, September-2014 all VPN services I’ve tried get randomly unstable and disconnect, sometimes after a while, sometimes often. From 4pm to midnight the latency doubles, and the bandwidth goes sometimes to dialup speeds.
    I own a web hosting company in Argentina, and I need to be connected to my business.
    My workaround was to use a VPS* in Los Angeles, USA and get a PPTP server configured there.
    In this way I make sure my VPN is used only by me, and won’t slow down by other users as it would happen if it was a popular VPN service.
    I didn’t use just any VPS, I picked one that has “Asia optimized”.
    All this while local chinese internet is as fast as if it was in my own computer.
    If you need help with all this, I can give you a hand. Just drop me an email.

  24. -_- says

    Also, and lots of other vpn sites are blocked, also when you try to download the Facebook app it fails too

  25. Wong says

    I have been using for a month already after moving from Astrill (which gave me tons of headache before and very unstable recently). Surprisingly, I dont face any problems at all on all of my iOS devices. The speed is decent, but drop sometimes depend on the chosen server. However, this vpn gives me a little nag as sometimes you need to refresh an unloaded page.

    I am currently living in GZ.

  26. says

    Importantly, IKEv2 protocol is supported by Astrill who also has an exclusive StealthVPN that makes my connection stable. ExpressVPN supports fewer protocols, but is more expensive. In addition, I have bought other vpns provided by Chinese companies such as OpenerVPN, JoyVPN and VPN Tech. They’re all disappointing products with regard to my needs.

    • says

      I don’t like Astrill — it’s one of the oldest VPN providers, but it has not kept pace with other providers (such as the one listed on this page). I found their customer support to be very unresponsive. They also require you to reveal a phone number when signing up to their service.

  27. Lee gunn says

    I’m out of my league in offering any advice. I would like some help in knowing what to install on my iPad mini for my upcoming three month trip to China. I will be located in Shanghai and would like to access my online life and family while I am there. I’d like to access google, fab,LinkedIn,YouTube etc. all advice great fully recieved

  28. says

    I have tried many ways, free and paid ways to open blocked websites, I think vpn works better than others, this is what I can recommend,try the service before you pay for it!
    I ordered my account from the price is great. 1Months $3.3 , 3Months $7 and 12 Months $16
    It has free test account and you can try the service for free.
    It supports all protocols(PPTP, L2TP, OpenVPN,CiscoVpn), And you don’t have to buy different accounts for different devices(use 1 account to connect on your computer and your mobile at the same time)

  29. Syed says

    I am going to Guangzhou this November. First time in China. I need to make sure I can access google map/FB/gmail etc. from my iPhone. I will buy a prepaid card and use internet there from my iPhone. I need someone to tell me whats the best VPN currently working in China. After reading this thread I think it is ExpressVPN. I don’t care about the price. I am only going to be there for few weeks, so I only need to buy it for one month. Please help..
    Need to work with iOS devices…


  30. says

    Secrete your identity: While you approach a VPN provider to use its services, you get hidden from your all world outright. The network permits you to select a server as per your individual liking and allocates an IP address accordingly. Since this IP differs from a original one, hence the likelihood of your presence being tracked online get negated.

  31. Meg says

    Hi GreyOne…as a long time resident of Shanghai, we’ve recently run into a number of issues with Astrill so have been looking for a replacement service. THANK YOU for such an informative article…we’ve just signed up with ExpressVPN and are really pleased with the ease of use and responsive customer service….so far, so good.

  32. Mike Spencer says

    I just returned from Daqing up in Northern China and successfully used ExpressVPN and Pure VPN. Pure worked perfectly right from the start after clicking on their China location. I had to make one minor setting change in Express but that worked well also. Private Internet Service worked only after I followed a several step workaround plan and even then it occasionally had a problem connecting. I also tried Express VPN with in Shanghai with success.

  33. Christopher says


    I have been using ExpressVPN for over two months now. I’m located in Shanghai

    The thing is the VPN works wonder when you use on PC or Android, but when you use an IOS device, there is a problem. I got MAJOR difficulties to connect, and it is often disconnected after few minutes, but sometimes it works flawlessly as well. They tell me that the solution to that problem is just try connect to different server and keep trying until it connects. The problem is, its very-very difficult to connect

    I try to ask the ExpressVPN customer service, they tell me that IOS device doesnt support stealth mode as android, pc, or mac

    Has anyone got the same problem as me? or its just my unfortunate condition

    Thank you

    • says

      That discussion took place in March. The situation is China changes daily. there is no magical fix for the Firewall. Your best bet is try out one the VPN solutions listed above, and keep in touch with their support for the latest recommnendations.

  34. Anna says

    I would Like to ask you, what is the best VPN for using in Shenzhen, for android mobile telephone and Tablet ?

  35. Bowen says

    I have just bought Astrill service, is it very poor? But I think the speed is pretty good when I was watch 1080P video. I lives in China.

  36. Alexander says

    It’s hard to talk that this VPN operator is the best for you.
    It’s a China….
    You need to test VPN in advance for your current location. But (!) if it is working good now there is no guarantee that it will work good tomorrow.
    I tried many VPNs and now I am using
    I can’t say that they are the best, but at least their support is friendly.

  37. Carla says

    I just got back 2 days ago from China. I used ExpressVPN in June 2014 and it was great. On this trip, it connected only about 50% of the time. Very frustrating!

    • says

      I am going to Guilin in April and I am also wrapping up my last online Graduate Class in my Master’s Program during that timeframe. Is it worth dicing it and going with a VPN or using a 4 Star Hotel’s WiFi? – The 4 Star Hotel WiFi function came from someone in our International Student Affairs department whom is from China and studied there, but this was a while ago. Also, does Guilin have Internet? Part of the charm is that it is a very old city that has not been updated for historical preservation purposes from what I hear.

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