Saudi Arabia has long had a reputation for restricting citizens’ online freedoms, so whether you live there or are just visiting, using a VPN is 100% necessary.
Without one, you won’t be able to use popular messaging services like WhatsApp or Skype, and will be subject to intrusive surveillance measures put in place by the Saudi government.
We’re constantly testing all of the VPNs on this page so you can rely on our picks to be totally up-to-date, helping to keep your personal information private and secure.
Wondering why you should trust our reviews? Take a look at How We Test VPNs
Yes, VPNs are completely legal in Saudi Arabia. Just beware that using them to cover up illegal activity is not – but that’s the case everywhere in the world.
Your main concern should be the sites you’re using your VPN to access. Many sites popular in the West are considered unlawful by the Saudi government and you would be classed as committing a crime if caught visiting them, with or without a VPN.
Our main priority when choosing VPNs for Saudi Arabia is to make sure they will provide you with completely unrestricted internet access when you’re in the country, even during periods of more aggressive censorship.
We also take into account the amount of servers located in and around the country, as you’ll need to connect to one close to your physical location for the best possible speeds. Some of our top picks will even work with popular sites such as Netflix and BBC iPlayer.
We are constantly testing all of the VPNs on our site to keep our recommendations 100% up-to-date.
The short answer to this is yes, absolutely, unless you want to risk not being able to use the sites and apps you take for granted on an everyday basis.
Saudi Arabia has a less-than-spotless history regarding internet censorship, and has been known to block messaging services such as WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger, as well as sites that contain ‘harmful’ or ‘offensive’ material.
Not only that, but the Saudi government also has the power to monitor everything you do online, including all of the websites you visit and every message you send or receive. Using a VPN is the only way to stop this from happening.
Although the VPN situation in Saudi Arabia isn’t quite as bad as in China or Russia, there are still many providers that won’t work in the country, whether that be for legal reasons or due to technical difficulties.
Our recommendations all have solid track records of providing a reliable service in the country, so you can rest assured you can’t go far wrong if you check this page before you buy.
With such strict censorship laws in Saudi Arabia, it’s essential that whichever provider you choose offers some sort of stealth protocol, as this will hide the fact you’re connecting using a VPN.
With this additional layer of obfuscation, it’ll be much harder for censors to detect and block your web traffic, allowing you easy access to geo-restricted content.
In most cases you’d want to connect to a server as close as possible to your physical location to get the best performance, ideally in the same country, but this isn’t an option if you’re trying to bypass censorship measures.
Look for VPNs with servers in neighboring countries such as Bahrain, Qatar, Egypt and Israel.
If you enjoy streaming content from sites such as Netflix and BBC iPlayer, you need to be careful which provider you choose, as not all of them will work.
We make sure to run regular tests to check whether certain VPNs are working with Netflix and other popular services, and share the results in our independent VPN reviews.
A VPN kill switch is an essential feature that cuts off all internet activity should the VPN connection drop for any reason, preventing your true IP address from being exposed.
This is particularly useful in high-censorship countries such as Saudi Arabia, as if your VPN were to disconnect without you noticing, your online activity would be visible to your ISP and any other potential snoopers.
Even the priciest VPN plans can be made more affordable by opting for a longer subscription. 12-month plans typically offer the best value for money, and choosing a provider with a long refund period will reduce the risk of buyer’s remorse.
These range from 7 up to 30 days, and are essentially the same thing as a free trial, only a lot more common. Make sure to check out any restrictions or caps that could prevent you from applying for a refund, though.