Expats, foreign exchange students, and tourists all use Skype to stay in touch with their friends and family members back home. The VoIP service has become an indispensable tool, allowing users to make free video and voice calls. But what would you do if you find yourself in a country like the UAE where Skype is banned?
Well you don’t have to worry, that’s for sure. In this guide, we’ll show you how to unblock Skype using a VPN, so that you can stay connected with your loved ones.
Why is Skype Blocked in the UAE?
The UAE’s Telecommunications Regulatory Authority (TRA) has blocked VoIP services like Skype to protect the interest of local telecom providers Etisalat and Du. Also, all voice, video, file transfers and instant messages on Skype are encrypted, which makes it almost impossible for the government to monitor user activity.
At the moment, Botim and C’Me are the only operational VoIP services in the UAE. But these apps have a number of problems that make them unpopular among UAE residents.
How to Unblock Skype Using a VPN
Your IP address gives away your geographic location. So as long as you’re in United Arab Emirates, you won’t be able to access Skype. Fortunately, there is a way to bypass the Skype ban. All you have to do is get a VPN.
A VPN (virtual private network) redirects your internet connection to a server from another country. It uses a software that conceals your original IP address, and gives you a new one from a different region. This will unblock Skype and any other VoIP service.
To get a VPN, just follow the steps below:
- Sign up with a VPN service provider. Check the list below for suggestions
- Download and install the VPN app.
- Create an account and sign in.
- Connect to any server where Skype is available like the US or the UK
- Double check your new IP address on WhatIsMyIP.network.
- Eureka! You can now use Skype
Best VPNs to Unblock Skype in UAE
With so many high-quality VPN providers in the market, choosing one can be a bit confusing. That’s why we prepared a list of the best VPN providers for the UAE that you can check out below.
I personally recommend ExpressVPN. I have used it myself to unblock Skype, and I have to say I was very impressed with the features that this brand offered.
Other ExpressVPN Benefits
ExpressVPN brings so much more to the table than just granting you access to Skype. The brand offers:
- A no-logging policy: The brand doesn’t log traffic data, DNS queries, or anything.
- A huge network of servers: It has over 1,000 servers in 94 nations, including Egypt and Kenya.
- Several payment methods: the list includes Visa, Master Card, American Express, PayPal, Maestro and much more.
- AES 256-bit encryption: a military-grade encryption to keep your data safe.
- Torrenting allowance: ExpressVPN allows full P2P file-sharing activity
- Netflix compatibility: You can access any Netflix library that you desire, including the US.
- A 30-day refund policy: You can get your money back if you don’t like the services.
What About Free VPNs?
We advise you to completely stay away from free VPNs. If you want top services, you have to pay for them.
Free VPNs are not as trustworthy as their paid counterparts. For instance, they use weak encryption protocols, and sometimes none at all, which could be extremely risky. They are also extremely slow due to the large number of users logged in.
But perhaps the most dangerous aspect is that they keep log of your internet activity, and sell it to third parties for advertisement purposes.
So put your mind at ease and get a reliable VPN that keeps your data safe and private.
Skype Compatible Devices
You can download and install Skype on almost any device, including:
- Amazon Fire
- Xbox One
How to Unblock Skype in the UAE – Conclusion
Microsoft is currently holding talks with the UAE government to lift the ban on Skype. The TRA revealed that Microsoft is heavily investing in the country, and that the tech company’s growing investment plan could strengthen the relationship between both sides. But it could take a long time to complete the deal and end the Skype ban. So until then, get a VPN and enjoy free video and voice calls.