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The Best VPN for WhatsApp Calls in The UAE 2024

Anyone who’s tried to make WhatsApp video or voice-only calls in Dubai knows that it, along with so many other VoIP services, are completely blocked. However, with a sufficiently powerful VPN, you can unblock the popular voice and chat app from within the United Arab Emirates, and hold conversations in complete anonymity. We review our favorite providers to get around the Dubai ban below.

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Are WhatsApp Calls Allowed in The UAE?

Most VoIP services are banned in Dubai and the other Emirates, including Abu Dhabi, and WhatsApp–with its convenient built-in voice and video calling features–is no exception. One way to beat this block is by getting a VPN that works in the UAE, which topples these countermeasures by giving you a foreign IP. It will also encrypt your data, making it all but invisible to government oversight, hackers, or any other third-party snooping.

Need to unblock WhatsApp calling in UAE? Do it securely with these VPNs:

  1. NordVPN – (Best UAE VPN) NordVPN is an extremely popular provider in Dubai, thanks to its myriad privacy provisions which make short work of the UAE’s ban on WhatsApp calls.
  2. Surfshark – Diskless infrastructure, blanket obfuscation, and military-grade encrypt bust through government censorship.
  3. ExpressVPN – When speed is your top priority, trust one of the fastest networks in the business.
  4. CyberGhost – A generalist VPN with specialist provisions for breaking through geoblocks.
  5. PrivateVPN – This provider owns and operates their entire network, meaning no third-party snooping of your VPN connection.
  6. PureVPN – Has years of experience contending with China’s Great Firewall. Easily beats UAE VoIP blocks.

Editor's Pick May 2024

Get NordVPN for just $3.49 a month on a 2 year plan

What makes a good VPN for voice calling in the UAE and Dubai?

When using VoIP apps in the UAE, you’ll want to judge your VPN options by the following criteria:

  • Server network size – the more servers are in a network, the more countries you can get a local IP from. This makes it easier to unblock WhatsApp in the UAE, and also gives you a chance to download the app in whichever language you feel comfortable with.
  • Encryption protocols – the United Arab Emirates can be strict in terms of censorship, and flagrant when it comes to looking at your personal data. To protect your data and hide the fact that you’re using WhatsApp, you’ll want to use a VPN provider with strong encryption. The best formats to look for are OpenVPN’s UDP and TCP, which combine best-in-business security with speed and compatibility.
  • Logging policy – whether you’re a traveler, a permanent resident, or a digital nomad, the UAE can try to get your information from your VPN provider by asking them directly or applying political and commercial pressure. A strong logging policy can prevent this by making it so your VPN service doesn’t keep records of what you do online. Look for the words “zero-logging” and “no-logging” in specific.
  • Speed and bandwidth caps – voice and video calling can require a lot of speed and bandwidth. A VPN service that limits how much data you can download and send is a poor choice, so look for providers that don’t limit your uptime, cap your speeds, or burden your connection with excess encryption overhead.

Comparison of the Best VPNs for WhatsApp Calls in The UAE

VPNs
Average Speed
191.4Mbps
191.25Mbps
181.11Mbps
137.62Mbps
94Mbps
Countries
60
100
94
91
63
Servers
5400
3200
3000
9022
200
Uptime
99%
99%
99%
100%
99.9%
Log Policy
Logs Present
Logs Present
Logs Present
Logs Present
Logs Present
Live Chat Support
  • 24/7 Live Chat
  • 24/7 Live Chat
  • 24/7 Live Chat
  • 24/7 Live Chat
  • 24/7 Live Chat
Optimized for Torrenting
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Streaming Unblocked
  • Netflix,
  • Disney+,
  • Amazon Prime,
  • iPlayer,
  • YouTube,
  • Hulu
  • Netflix,
  • Disney+,
  • Amazon Prime,
  • iPlayer,
  • YouTube,
  • Hulu
  • Netflix,
  • Disney+,
  • Amazon Prime,
  • iPlayer
  • Netflix,
  • Disney+,
  • Amazon Prime,
  • iPlayer,
  • YouTube,
  • Hulu
  • Netflix,
  • Disney+,
  • Amazon Prime,
  • iPlayer,
  • YouTube,
  • Hulu
Free Trial
30 Day Free Trial
7 Days Free Trial
30 Day Free Trial
24 Hours on Desktop and 48 Hours on Mobile
7 Days Free Trial
Money Back Guarantee
30 Days Money Back Guarantee
30 Day Money Back Guarantee
30 Day Money Back Guarantee
45 Day Money Back Guarantee
30 Day Money Back Guarantee
Connections
6
Unlimited
5
7
10
Works in Your Country
Best Price
$2.99/month
$1.99/month
$6.67/month
$2.19/month
$2.00

Best VPNs to get around the VoIP ban in UAE

Below, we present the top VPNs with the privacy and performance features necessary to unblock crystal-clear WhatsApp video calling in the United Arab Emirates

1. NordVPN

Works in United States
4.5 / 5
NordVPN
Top Features
Number of Servers
5400
Speed
Average of 191.4 mbps
Countries
60
Devices Supported
Up to 6
24/7 Live Support
Yes
Money Back Guarantee
30 Days Money Back Guarantee
Streaming Sites Unblocked
Netflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime, iPlayer, YouTube, Hulu
Torrenting
Yes
Exclusive Deals
Best Deal
Standard at $2.99/month
Plus at $4.49/month
Complete at $5.49/month
Apps Available
NordVPN Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Very affordable plans
  • A mind-boggling number of servers
  • DNS leak protection, kill switch
  • “Double” data protection
  • Great support (24/7 chat)
Cons
  • They can take 30 days to process refunds

NordVPN is a VPN service best known for its strong privacy and anti-censorship features. It uses military-grade 256-bit AES encryption to protect your data from all third parties, including governments and ISPs – which is excellent for dealing with heavy-handed UAE authorities. The company’s no-logging policy is comprehensive, covering traffic, IP addresses, bandwidth, and more.

What really makes NordVPN stand out, though, is its specialty servers; there’s a total of six types, including obfuscated servers that hide the fact you’re using a VPN, as well as Double VPN nodes that route your data through two layers of security and two proxies for ultimate protection. As deep as the network goes, it also goes broad, spanning 5,000+ servers in 62 countries worldwide. This means that you can get any WhatsApp version you like, and choose servers that give you the best possible connection speeds and low latencies for your calls. This is part of the reason why NordVPN routinely ranks as one of the fastest VPNs on the market in our reviews and speed tests.

Some VPN apps are hard to use – but NordVPN’s, which work on virtually all common device types, is surprisingly straightforward given how powerful the app is. Rounding out the suite are a host of advanced features including ad and malware blockers, a kill switch, and a built-in DNS leak test.

Read our full NordVPN review.

2. Surfshark

Works in United States
4.5 / 5
NordVPN
Top Features
Number of Servers
5400
Speed
Average of 191.4 mbps
Countries
60
Devices Supported
Up to 6
24/7 Live Support
Yes
Money Back Guarantee
30 Days Money Back Guarantee
Streaming Sites Unblocked
Netflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime, iPlayer, YouTube, Hulu
Torrenting
Yes
Exclusive Deals
Best Deal
Standard at $2.99/month
Plus at $4.49/month
Complete at $5.49/month
Apps Available
Surfshark Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Unblock 15 international Netflix libraries, including the US and Japan
  • Server selection is dead simple and quick
  • 30-day satisfaction guarantee
  • Favorable BVI jurisdiction guarantees no logs kept
  • Responsive customer support available 24/7
Cons
  • Connection speeds won’t impress users of other high-end VPNs
  • Young VPN still has plenty of room to grow in terms of advanced functionality

Don’t be fooled by Surfshark’s newcomer status; in just two years they’ve become one of the top-rated VPNs in the world for beating government censorship and unblocking calling apps like WhatsApp. They’ve achieved this feat by completely modernizing the standard VPN offering, peppered with some sweet cybersecurity extras.

Surfshark uses the same unbreakable encryption as the NSA: the 256-AES-GCM cipher. Combined with cutting-edge tunneling protocols (OpenVPN, IKEv2/IPSec, WireGuard), you’ll find that the UAE’s harsh censorship isn’t actually all that tough. Of course, Surfshark’s ready to up the ante, with blanket obfuscation across their entire network.

And speaking of networks, Surfshark maintains a respectable 800+ servers across 50 countries. This means you have plenty of choices to spoof a nearby IP address for fast, lag-free WhatsApp calling. Don’t worry about leaving a trace behind either, Surfshark’s logging policy is golden, backed by RAM-only servers which can’t store user metadata long-term.

3. ExpressVPN

Works in United States
4 / 5
ExpressVPN
Top Features
Number of Servers
3000
Speed
Average of 181.11 mbps
Countries
94
Devices Supported
Up to 5
24/7 Live Support
Yes
Money Back Guarantee
30 Day Money Back Guarantee
Streaming Sites Unblocked
Netflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime, iPlayer
Torrenting
Yes
Exclusive Deals
Best Deal
12 Months at $6.67/month
6 Months at $9.99/month
1 Month at $12.95/month
Apps Available
ExpressVPN Pros & Cons
Pros
  • SPECIAL OFFER: 3 months free (49% off – link below)
  • 3,000+ super fast servers
  • No DNS/IP leaks found
  • Strict no-logs policy
  • Customer Service (24/7 Chat)
Cons
  • Max 3 simultaneous connections
  • Slightly more expensive than some other options

ExpressVPN is another good choice for most Gulf countries – and the UAE is no exception to this rule. The service is highly secure, with a selection of 256-bit AES encryption protocols that would take a supercomputer millions of years to crack. One of these is the SSTP protocol, which helps beat hardcore censorship blocks – and can give you WhatsApp access no matter where you happen to be. In addition to this, ExpressVPN has a strong no-logging policy that covers browsing histories, IP addresses, traffic, and more. If you’d like to protect your call data and your identity while using WhatsApp calls in Dubai, this is an excellent choice.

Another reason to choose ExpressVPN is its service and technology quality. With 3,000+ nodes in over 94 countries, you can access most localized app stores and access WhatsApp in any language you choose. Thanks to a selection of lightweight apps, installing the service on all common devices, including routers, is easy – and only takes minutes. Speed, server switches, and bandwidth are all unlimited, allowing for long, clear calling. There’s also a host of extra features, like a DNS leak test that makes sure your data is safe – and split-tunneling, which lets you use WhatsApp calls without routing the rest of your online activities through your VPN.

Read our full ExpressVPN review.

4. CyberGhost

Works in United States
4.1 / 5
Cyberghost
Top Features
Number of Servers
9022
Speed
Average of 137.62 mbps
Countries
91
Devices Supported
Up to 7
24/7 Live Support
Yes
Money Back Guarantee
45 Day Money Back Guarantee
Streaming Sites Unblocked
Netflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime, iPlayer, YouTube, Hulu
Torrenting
Yes
Exclusive Deals
Best Deal
Best Value at $2.19/month
6 Month Plan at $6.99/month
Monthly Plan at $11.99/month
Apps Available
CyberGhost Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Unblocking Netflix, iPlayer, YouTube, Hulu
  • Peer-to-peer (P2P) torrenting allowed
  • 2,048-bit RSA keys and SHA256 authentication
  • Private: Strong no logs policy
  • 24/7 Live Chat Support
Cons
  • Doesn’t work well in China

CyberGhost is the perfect choice if you just want to start using WhatsApp voice and video calls in the UAE without going through a complicated installation process. Instead of asking you to choose servers and configurations manually, CyberGhost simply lets you choose from six preset configuration profiles. It also has a selection of easy toggles, like “block online tracking” and “extra speed”. Between all these extras, using WhatsApp calls in the UAE is safe and easy – even if you don’t have much (if any) IT knowledge).

CyberGhost has a strong selection of encryption protocols, including OpenVPN’s UDP and TCP (two cutting-edge technologies used by militaries and special ops teams). The logging policy is so perfect that it stores virtually nothing, not even your e-mail address.

With 5,900 servers in 90 countries, OpenVPN allows for fast connections and gives you the chance to download whichever WhatsApp version you prefer. All of this comes with unlimited bandwidth, unlimited speed, unlimited server switches, and up to 5 simultaneous device connections – making CyberGhost a top choice for online users of all kinds. Dedicated apps are available for a variety of devices: iPhones, Android smartphones, macOS/Linux/Windows computers, routers, video game consoles, and more.

Read our full CyberGhost review.

5. PrivateVPN

Works in United States
4 / 5
PrivateVPN
Top Features
Number of Servers
200
Speed
Average of 94 mbps
Countries
63
Devices Supported
Up to 10
24/7 Live Support
Yes
Money Back Guarantee
30 Day Money Back Guarantee
Streaming Sites Unblocked
Netflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime, iPlayer, YouTube, Hulu
Torrenting
Yes
Exclusive Deals
Best Deal
36 Month Plan at $2.00/month
3 Month Plan at $6.00/month
Monthly Plan at $9.90/month
Apps Available

PrivateVPN is one of the most well-rounded providers out there. This provider’s only possible point of criticism lands on its server network, which numbers over 150 servers in 60+ countries. However, in practice, you’ll find this is more than enough to get strong connections to IP addresses all over the world–not to mention any local-language version of WhatsApp you may want. More importantly, all PrivateVPN servers are exceptionally powerful – and equipped with a variety of encryption protocols, including OpenVPN’s UDP and TCP, PPTP, L2TP, IKEV2, and IPSec.

The passcodes used for PrivateVPN’s encryption are 2048-bit (via AES-256) – which means that they have more possible variations than there are atoms in the known universe. Between this and a tough zero-logging policy that makes it virtually impossible to trace your identity, device, and location, this is an excellent service if you’ve got privacy and security front of mind.

Bandwidth, speed, and server switches are all unlimited with PrivateVPN. That means you can use WhatsApp calls to your heart’s content, without ever worrying about extra fees or speed reductions. PrivateVPN has a free, remote setup service to help you install your VPN, so if you’re not sure you can manage it on your own, this service is the one for you. Last but not least, anonymous torrenting and other P2P services are accepted and welcome, which is convenient if you want more than just WhatsApp calls from your service.

6. PureVPN

Works in United States
4.3 / 5
PureVPN
Top Features
Number of Servers
6500
Speed
Average of 90.54 mbps
Countries
78
Devices Supported
Up to 10
24/7 Live Support
Yes
Money Back Guarantee
31 Day Money Back Guarantee
Streaming Sites Unblocked
Netflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime, iPlayer, YouTube, Hulu
Torrenting
Yes
Exclusive Deals
Best Deal
Most Recommended at $2.08/month
12 Months at $3.24/month
1 Month at $10.95/month
Apps Available

With 2,000+ servers in 60+ countries, PureVPN gives you a huge selection of foreign IPs, which is helpful for getting localized WhatsApp versions and getting high-quality connections with people, no matter where in the world they are. It’s also a cool extra if you want to stream videos and play video games without restrictions. Bandwidth, speed, and server switches are all unlimited – and there’s a large suite of apps, including browser extension versions of PureVPN, to make installation and operation a breeze.

In addition to having a large server network and feature set, PureVPN is strong on security. In addition to using military-grade 256-bit AES encryption, there are extra features like app filtering, DDoS protection, anti-spam filtering, anti-virus software, and even a NAT firewall. There’s also built-in P2P protection for torrent users, anti-ISP throttling that removes limits UAE internet providers may set on your speed and a proprietary Ozone feature that protects your device, data, and identity no matter what time of day it is. There’s even a built-in kill switch that takes your WhatsApp calls offline to avoid them getting discovered if your PureVPN connection drops.

Read our full PureVPN review.

Why can’t you use WhatsApp in the UAE?

The United Arab Emirates’ government keeps tight controls over internet access in the country. Internet filtering (i.e. censorship), government snooping and ISP tracking are all part and parcel of using the local internet. Moreover, there are only two internet providers in the country: Etisalat and du. Between these two government-owned and affiliated services, the state has almost complete control over what you can and can’t do online in the country. Facebook, WhatsApp, Snapchat, and Skype are all blocked or restricted, as are pornographic websites, gambling websites and many other sites (like some portions of Wikipedia).

The exact reasons for these filters and blocks are hard to identify. For example, Baha’i Faith resources have often been restricted or blocked in the past. So has politically sensitive information. Given that most if not all the news sources in the UAE are government-owned or government-controlled, it appears that WhatsApp is blocked at least in part because of how it can be used to encourage anti-government sentiment and spread information.

Why not use the legal alternatives to WhatsApp?

Whether you’re already in the Gulf state or only considering going there, you likely know about the UAE’s domestic VoIP applications: C’Me and BOTIM. These apps both meet the UAE’s regulatory framework, which basically means they are happy to censor their users and reveal their personal data to the state. There are three main problems with the apps. First, they are easiest to use with other C’Me and BOTIM users – of which there are very few. For example, most companies and individuals you know are unlikely to have either app.

Second, BOTIM and C’Me aren’t the best-made apps. There are many complaints about both of them crashing, malfunctioning and otherwise displeasing users. They appear to be even less put-together than Skype – and certainly worse than WhatsApp on most fronts. Third, both apps are paid, running from 52.50 to 105 AED. Compared to WhatsApp audio and video calls, which are completely free to make, this is very expensive – and another reason to avoid using BOTIM and C’Me.

 

How to get a FREE VPN for 30 days

If you need a VPN for a short while when traveling for example, you can get our top ranked VPN free of charge. NordVPN includes a 30-day money-back guarantee. You will need to pay for the subscription, that’s a fact, but it allows full access for 30 days and then you cancel for a full refund. Their no-questions-asked cancellation policy lives up to its name.

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