Saudi Arabia is a desert country that takes up most of the Arabian peninsula. It is known as the birthplace of Islam, and contains the two holy cities of Mecca and Medina. In 1938, oil was discovered there, and it is the world’s largest oil producing country. Despite the money and the beautiful beaches, Saudi Arabia has some strict laws that seem unusual to those in the western world. Therefore, we suggest if you plan to travel to Saudi Arabia, you should sign up for a VPN before leaving home.
Best VPNs for Saudi Arabia – Summary
Here are our favorites for the top 5 VPN services to use in Saudi Arabia.
Saudi Arabia is a beautiful and historic place. However, the first reason to use a VPN while there is to protect your privacy. You probably know there is quite a bit of business done there. Because of that, you are likely to encounter cybercrooks. You can guess that there are people just waiting to take advantage of vulnerable users and steal their data. On top of that, you have to worry about the prying eyes of the Saudi Arabian government. They make no bones about the fact that they monitor internet traffic. By using a VPN, you create a secure and encrypted connection so you can prevent crooks from stealing your personal information.
The second reason to use a VPN has to do with it’s unblocking abilities. In this case, the connection you create may be to a server in another country. It is known that Saudi Arabia blocks websites that it feels are offensive to Islam. If you connect to a different country, you would not encounter the same restrictions. That is great if you want to stream media from YouTube or any other website. In cases like Netflix, there are different libraries all over the world, and connecting to a different country would allow you to see the library from whatever region you wish. Another reason for using a VPN may be for work purposes. Sometimes people that work remotely need access to documents on the company’s network, or even their own machines. Because of the secure tunnel created, the only way you would be able to accomplish that goal is by using a VPN.
Those are two of the best reasons to use a VPN while in Saudi Arabia. However, you may find there are other reasons as well. Whether you want to unblock banned websites, protect your privacy from the government and crooks, or other things, using a VPN is a good idea. Now that you see why it is important to do so, let’s take a closer look at the providers and criteria we use for our list.
What is the best VPN for Saudi Arabia?
There are several factors to consider look at when trying to answer the question. Here are some of the big ones we looked at to determine the best VPNs for Saudi Arabia:
- Strong encryption for good user privacy protection
- Providers that offer a no logs policy
- A large network of servers to help you lessen or eliminate disconnects
- Ability to unblock geo-blocked or banned content
- Multi-platform mobile device support including Amazon Firestick
- Fast servers in the Saudi Arabian region that perform well on speed tests
- 12-month plan – $6.99 a month ($83.88 total cost)
- 6-month plan – $7.99 a month ($47.94 total cost)
- 1-month plan – $11.99 a month
HideMyAss was brought to life in 2005 when Jack Cator, a 16-year-old student in England, decided that he wanted to create a service to help people avoid censorship. Specifically, Jack was unable to access social media sites and online games because they were blocked on the school network. HMA added hundreds of thousands of users the first month and has since grown into one of the largest VPN services in the world with over 350 server locations. Privax, the parent company of HMA Pro VPN, joined the AVG team in 2015.
If your goal is to find the VPN with the most server locations, then HideMyAss is your best choice. Just keep in mind that HMA logs user activity which is a concern for some VPN users. HMA hosts a number of servers in the Saudi Arabian region, including some in Riyadh. To connect to a server there, you need to choose the “Location Mode” and select “Change Location” to get started. Then click on the “Cities” tab and search for Riyadh. From there you can select the Saudi Arabia, Riyadh server location. We connected to a server in there to test and found the speed to be 26.20 Mbps.
In 2016 HMA and a few other leading VPN providers led the way in simplifying their custom client software. The result is a full set of custom apps that make it easy for any user to connect to the HMA network and encrypt your connection. They have software available for Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS. You can also connect to HMA through your router. HMA offers unlimited VPN access from just $6.99 a month and offers all new users a 30-day risk-free money back guarantee.
Read our full review of HMA.
- Exclusive 24 month plan – $2.50 a month ($59.95 total cost)
- 12-month plan – $3.25 a month ($38.95 total cost)
- 1-month plan – $6.45 a month
As a user, Private Internet Access (PIA) provides you with several different options. Previously, you had to set up a profile for each VPN server. Now, connecting to any server in their network of 28 countries is easy. The PIA team has organized their servers by region, country, and city. The server locations are listed in alphabetical order by country. Once you select a location, you can connect easily to locations in the area to secure your Saudi Arabian VPN connection.
There are a lot of torrent users who love Private Internet Access. The service includes a feature that will stop your system from communicating if the connection to their service drops. Meaning if your encrypted VPN access is dropped for any reason it will keep you safe.
PIA offers a Windows client and other apps that are simple and easy to use. However, you won’t want to underestimate it. PIA offers different levels of privacy protection depending on your needs. You can control encryption levels to help you find the right balance between privacy and speed. As you can see, our speed test showed that PIA performs well in Dubai, UAE (the closest location). When we connected to a server there, we got a speed of 108.86 Mbps.
When it comes to their Windows client the PIA team has included an Internet kill switch. The kill switch will kill your Internet connection anytime the VPN fails. That can really come in handy for those wanting to ensure anonymity in Saudi Arabia. Private Internet Access offers VPN from just $2.50 a month.
Read our full review of Private Internet Access.
- Exclusive 12-month plan – $4.87 a month ($58.49 total cost)
- 3-month plan – $6.74 a month ($20.24 total cost)
- 1-month plan – $7.50 a month
Saudi Arabia is home to many people, and many VPN services have servers there. That includes IPVanish. We can tell you from personal knowledge that it will work well, no matter what area of the area you are in. You can expect fast servers and more server locations in the region than almost anyone else. Because of those reasons, we choose IPVanish as one of our go-to options to use while in Saudi Arabia.
As well as coverage in Eurasia, IPVanish hosts servers in every continent other than Antarctica. The network produces great speeds in the region when we perform our speed tests. You will find multiple server locations all over the region. You can select a location or an individual server from the drop-down menu.
IPVanish hosts a number of servers in the locations in the area and you can choose to connect to any of them. If you see servers that have the letter “a” in the server name, those are the fastest. For example, you would look for one labeled similarly to dxb-c01.ipvanish.com. (located in Dubai). In this case, however, you will find a single server. We tested an IPVanish server there, dxb-c01, and found the speed to be 24.93 Mbps.
When it comes to value IPVanish is hard to beat. They offer unlimited access to their VPN network and custom software for Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, Amazon Firestick, and more for $7.50 a month or $58.49 a year. That works out to just $4.87 a month on the annual plan. A 7-day money back guarantee will cover you as a new member.
Read our full review of IPVanish.
- Exclusive 12-month plan + 3 mos. free – $6.67 a month ($99.95 total cost)
- 6-month plan – $9.99 a month ($59.95 total cost)
- 1-month plan – $12.95 a month
ExpressVPN brings together fast VPN access with MediaStreamer which acts as a Smart DNS service to help unblock access to some great geo-restricted content. The service will help encrypt your connection and unblock live sporting events. You will even find a list of the latest live entertainment and sporting events on their website.
ExpressVPN manages a very large VPN network. It boasts hundreds of servers in key locations to help protect their user’s privacy. You can use their network to protect your privacy, unblock censorship, and more from anywhere.
The ExpressVPN app allows you to select a server location down to the city but you can not choose a specific server. Instead, the client will select a server in your chosen location. You also need to know that some cities are not shown on the recommended tab inside the client. You may find that issue with the cities we mentioned. Simply select the “All” tab, open Europe, and then open Tukey. At this point, you can select the server there. We selected a server in Turkey and the speed was 60.24 Mbps.
While ExpressVPN is sold at a higher price point than the other services in our list, the value is high given the size of their network and service features. You can connect a computer, handheld device, router, and game console (SmartDNS) with a single VPN account for just $6.67 a month with an annual subscription.
Read our full review of ExpressVPN.
- Exclusive 12-month plan + 6 mos. free – $2.75 a month ($49.50 total cost)
- 6-month plan – $4.99 a month ($29.94 total cost)
- 1-month plan – $11.99 a month
CyberGhost was founded in 2001 by 7 enthusiastic young team members in Bucharest, Romania. Since that time the company has grown into one of the largest VPN services in the world. The team of 50+ members focuses on protecting users privacy. Robert Knapp, co-founder and CEO, continues to lead the team even after they joined the Crossrider group in 2017. Since that time the CyberGhost network has expanded quite a bit.
CyberGhost offers a nice mix of server locations, strong encryption, and the ability to unblock popular streaming services like Netflix, YouTube Red, and Amazon Prime. Some of the channels even let you unblock geo-restrictions for multiple regions. For example, you can access Amazon Prime video content in the US, Germany, or UK. The Windows client also gives you the option to surf anonymously, protect WiFi, torrent anonymously, unblock basic websites (Google, Facebook Instagram, etc.), and choose a server.
Since we wanted to test a server in Israel (the closest location), we opened the Windows client and expanded the interface. From there you will want to click on the “All Servers” tab if it isn’t already active. Scroll down to Israel and click to the right of the star. This will bring up a full list of servers there. The CyberGhost network includes servers in the country. We connected to a server there and got a speed of 99.83 Mbps.
The CyberGhost VPN client is one of our favorites. It is very easy to use and includes a number of advanced features to help protect your online privacy. They have a development team in Germany that is continually adding features to the client and mobile apps. You can sign up for full access to the CyberGhost network from just $2.75 a month during their current promotion.
Read our full review of CyberGhost VPN.
Above, we have given you the best options to use while in Saudi Arabia. However, you can always have look at our top 10 VPN services for different choices. That said, the providers in our list are the best overall for the region so they are sure to meet any goal you have. we used security, regional locations, speed, and price as the factors for picking these selections. In addition, we also picked the ones with large networks of servers you may wish to connect to. Fast networks for streaming HD content and protecting your privacy are marks of reliable VPN providers. Of course, our choices do both. No matter your reasons, hopefully, we have shown you why you should use one. We are confident that you will be happy with any of the options we recommend in this post.