5 Best VPNs for League of Legends (Lower Ping) in 2023
I know the frustration of trying to play League of Legends (LoL) and having high latency and ping. Although the game has servers worldwide, you may still experience lag if its server is distant from you.
The best way around this problem is to use a good VPN. A VPN re-routes your data through another location nearer to the game’s server to reduce lag. It lets you play via another server if your local game server is down or your network at school or work has restricted access to the game.
After extensively testing dozens of VPNs, ExpressVPN is my #1 VPN for LoL because of its high-speed server network. You can buy ExpressVPN in confidence as it’s backed by a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Play LoL lag-free with ExpressVPN
Quick Guide: Best VPNs for League of Legends in 2023
- ExpressVPN — ExpressVPN is the best VPN for League of Legends because it offers blazing-fast speeds even on distant servers
- CyberGhost — Offers servers optimized for online gaming, but speeds can substantially reduce with distance.
- Private Internet Access — Hosts an extensive network for optimal speeds, but the VPN is based in the 5 Eyes Alliance region.
- IPVanish — Play League of Legends on unlimited devices, but you’ll have to give personal information when signing up.
- PureVPN — Includes port forwarding, but lacks gaming-optimized servers.
Play LoL lag-free with ExpressVPN
The Best VPNs for League of Legends (Tested in 2023)
1. ExpressVPN — #1 VPN for Playing LoL With Ultra-Fast Speeds and Low Ping
- 3,000+ servers across more than 94 countries
- Lightning-fast speeds even on distant servers for lag-free online gaming
- Supports multiple VPN protocols for a better gaming experience
- Works on up to 5 devices simultaneously
- 30-day money-back guarantee
ExpressVPN is the best VPN for playing League of Legends. It uses the Lightway protocol to provide blazing-fast speeds even on distant servers and a perfect balance of performance and security. Normally, connection speeds drop substantially with distance, but that wasn’t the case with ExpressVPN.
Throughout my rigorous tests, ExpressVPN gave me unparalleled speeds. My speeds on distant servers were slightly slower than on nearby servers — but it’s a minuscule drop that won’t impact your online gaming experience. I connected to a distant server in Sydney as League of Legends has a server there, and I could play the game without lag.
Online gaming can never be perfect without excellent security. ExpressVPN packs top-notch security features so you can be at peace of mind while gaming online.
- Military-grade AES 256-bit encryption — Encrypts your data and lets you play League of Legends if you’re traveling to a country where it’s banned or doesn’t work.
- Leak protection — Prevents IP addresses from being exposed and thwarts possible DDoS attacks. I ran several DNS, IP, and WebRTC leak tests, and ExpressVPN passed all of them.
- Split tunneling — Lets you use some apps with a VPN and some without it. You can play League of Legends using a VPN server and check the local news in your country simultaneously.
- Kill switch — Disconnects you from the internet when the VPN server drops for any reason, ensuring your IP address remains hidden throughout your gaming session.
With a network of 3,000 servers in more than 94 countries, ExpressVPN lets you connect to the nearest LoL server for faster speeds and lower latency. Use a server near the game server and your location for the best gaming experience.
It’s a hassle to find the fastest server every time you play League of Legends, CS:GO, or any other online game. That’s why I use ExpressVPN’s “Smart Location” feature to automatically connect to the nearest and fastest server.
Besides using ExpressVPN on your Windows laptop, Macbook, iPhone, and Android, you can also use it on consoles like PlayStation, Xbox, Nintendo Switch, and more. ExpressVPN works on up to 5 devices simultaneously so that you can play online games on one device and stream content on others.
The only downside of using ExpressVPN is its premium price tag, especially its monthly plan. However, it’s worth the cost because ExpressVPN delivers impeccable performance on all fronts, especially speeds and security — the 2 departments crucial for online gaming. Budget-conscious users can subscribe to its 1-year + 3 months plan to get a special discount of 49%. You can also check out some of the best monthly VPN plans, but bear in mind ExpressVPN outperforms every other VPN.
You can buy ExpressVPN in confidence as it’s backed by a 30-day money-back guarantee. If you’re unsatisfied with its performance, you can get a full refund. I tested ExpressVPN’s refund policy first-hand; I submitted my refund request via its 24/7 live chat and got my money back in just 3 days.
VPN unblocks: Netflix, Disney+, Hulu, HBO Max, Amazon Prime Video, Paramount+, Peacock, Discovery+, Showtime, BBC iPlayer, BritBox, Starz, Crunchyroll, fuboTV, Sling TV
VPN works on: Windows, macOS, Linux, Chromebook, Android, iOS, Chrome, Firefox, Edge, PlayStation, Xbox, Nintendo Switch, Amazon Fire TV, Amazon Fire TV Stick
Play League of Legends with ExpressVPN
2023 Update! ExpressVPN has dropped prices for a limited time to a crazy $6.67 per month for the 1-year plan (you can save up to 49%) + 3 months free! This is a limited offer so be sure to grab it now before it's gone. See more information on this offer here.
2. CyberGhost — Specialized Servers for Gaming Provide Ultra-Fast Speeds and Low Latency
- Extensive network of 9,000+ servers across over 91 countries for lag-free and seamless gaming
- Specialized servers for gaming provide ultra-fast speeds and low latency for uninterrupted gameplay
- Anti-malware feature protects you from viruses in real-time during in-game file-sharing
- Works on all major platforms, including gaming consoles like PlayStation, Xbox, and Nintendo
- 45-day money-back guarantee
CyberGhost is one of the best VPNs for League of Legends because it has special servers optimized for gaming. These servers provide ultra-fast speeds for playing League of Legends without worrying about latency. You can organize servers based on ping and pick the fastest one nearest to your location.
I tested CyberGhost thoroughly to see its performance without optimized servers and was happy with the results. CyberGhost has minimal speed drops on nearby servers and, at most, 12% on very distant servers. The moderately high ping of 120ms made League of Legends lag a bit but not so much that it would cost me my victory.
Online gaming involves file-sharing among gamers which can put you at serious risk. CyberGhost has an anti-malware feature that detects malicious files and stops them from infecting your device. During my tests, it blocked all common forms of infections like trojans, but it doesn’t work against complex zero-day threats. Even so, you can rest assured you’re safe from malware while playing League of Legends with CyberGhost.
If an in-built anti-malware engine isn’t enough, CyberGhost also includes:
- AES 256-bit encryption — Encrypts your IP address and gaming traffic, making them virtually impenetrable and preventing DDoS attacks.
- Multiple protocols — Choose between IKEv2, OpenVPN, and WireGuard protocols, depending on which one suits you better.
- Kill switch — Prevents your IP address from being exposed if you’re playing League of Legends or any other game where it’s not available.
Having VPN servers near the game’s servers is critical for low ping and seamless gaming. CyberGhost has over 9,000 servers spread across 91 countries, so you have plenty of server choices to get the best gaming experience while traveling. It also has a “Best server location” button that connects you to the nearest server and provides the best speeds.
You can use CyberGhost on up to 7 devices simultaneously. It works on all mainstream platforms, but you’ll have to manually set it up on gaming consoles via its Smart DNS feature. I did that by setting up a manual network connection and inserting a manual Primary and Secondary DNS before restarting the console — the entire process took just 3 minutes.
One distinct reason CyberGhost ranks second on my list is that its speeds on distant servers are lower than ExpressVPN’s. You could experience some lag while playing League of Legends but not if you have a fast internet connection. Even so, using CyberGhost’s gaming-optimized servers should solve the problem of high ping.
Of its 3 plans, I recommend getting CyberGhost’s 2-year + 3 months plan because it gives you the lowest monthly price of $2.11. The best part is you can test CyberGhost out risk-free as it offers a 45-day money-back guarantee. I submitted my refund request via email support and got my money back in 5 days.
VPN unblocks: Netflix, Hulu, HBO Max, Disney+, Kodi, BBC iPlayer, Amazon Prime Video, DAZN, ITV, Channel 4, Sky Go, Paramount+, Discovery, Curiosity Stream
VPN works on: Windows, Android, macOS, iOS, Linux, routers, Chrome, Firefox, Safari, PlayStation, Xbox, Nintendo Switch, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV
Play League of Legends with CyberGhost
2023 Update! You can subscribe to CyberGhost for as low as $2.11 per month + get extra 3 months free with the 2-year plan (save up to 84%)! This is a limited offer so grab it now before it's gone. See more information on this offer here.
3. Private Internet Access — Extensive Server Network Lets You Connect Near to League of Legends’ Server
- Over 35,000 servers in 84+ countries, so you can connect to the nearest game server for uninterrupted gaming
- Servers organized by ping so you can choose one with the lowest latency for lag-free online gaming
- Excellent leak prevention capabilities to protect you from DDoS attacks while gaming
- Play League of Legends on up to unlimited devices at a time
- 30-day no-questions-asked money-back guarantee
Private Internet Access has one of the most extensive server networks I’ve seen, making it easier to find a server near the game’s server. The closer a VPN server is to the game server, the lower the ping you’ll get while playing online. PIA has more than 400 servers per country on average, so you can easily find one nearest to your game server and play League of Legends without lag.
I ran several speed tests to gauge PIA’s performance drops across distances. Its nearby local servers gave me much faster speeds than the distant ones, as illustrated in the chart below. My baseline ping was 18 ms and increased to 25 ms on the nearby server, which is good for lag-free online gaming.
|Baseline Speed||Download Speed||% Speed Drop||Ping||Server Distance|
|US||100Mbps||94.62Mbps||5.38%||25 ms||50 km|
|UK||100Mbps||82.38Mbps||17.62%||95 ms||5000 km|
|Germany||100Mbps||79.77Mbps||20.23%||130 ms||6000 km|
|Australia||100Mbps||68.34Mbps||31.66%||160 ms||16000 km|
One of PIA’s unique features is that you can choose between the 128- and 256-bit encryption standards. Stronger encryption can slow down your speeds but if you’re gaming on a distant server, you can improve your speeds using 128-bit encryption and still be sufficiently secured.
Apart from flexible encryption, PIA offers the following security features for peace-of-mind gaming:
- Protocol flexibility — Choose between OpenVPN, WireGuard, PPTP, L2TP/IPSec, or SOCKS5 proxy for better speeds or security while playing LoL
- Additional hop — Adds a second layer for masking your IP address via the Shadowsocks proxy
- Malware protection — Blocks ads and malicious files if another gamer shares an infected file with you in-game
PIA supports unlimited simultaneous device connections and is compatible with all major operating systems. You can even set it up on your gaming console via smart DNS settings. Or, just head over to PIA’s knowledge base and follow the guide on how to set it up on your router so that all devices using that router get encrypted automatically.
The only reservation I had with PIA is that it’s based in the US, a core Five Eyes Alliance member. That means it’s subject to data retention policies, which I feared would compromise my privacy. However, I learned that PIA has a no-logs policy, meaning it doesn’t store your browsing data and can’t share it with the authorities if asked.
You can subscribe to PIA’s monthly plan just to test it out, but it’s more expensive. I recommend its 2-year + 3 months plan as it offers a substantial discount of 82%. You’ll still be able to test PIA risk-free with its 30-day money-back guarantee. I got my refund just 6 days after email confirmation.
VPN unblocks: HBO Max, BBC iPlayer, Canal+, CBC, Vudu, UKTV, Amazon Prime Video, Disney+, 9Now, and more
VPN works on: Windows, Android, macOS, iOS, Linux, routers, Kindle, Chrome, Firefox, PlayStation, Xbox, and more.
2023 Update! You can subscribe to PIA for as low as $2.11 per month + get extra 3 months free with the 2-year plan (save up to 82%)! This is a limited offer so grab it now before it's gone. See more information on this offer here!
4. IPVanish — Unlimited Device Connections Make Online Gaming Convenient and Accessible
- 2,000 servers in over 75 countries let you connect to nearby game servers for low ping
- In-house server management means little downtime and consistently fast speeds for lag-free gaming
- Play League of Legends on unlimited devices simultaneously
- Works on all major platforms and can be set up on a variety of gaming consoles
- 30-day money-back guarantee
With IPVanish, you can play LoL on unlimited devices simultaneously. My friends and I installed IPVanish on 6 PCs and 5 laptops to play LoL on LAN — none of us experienced lag during our 3-hour-long gaming session.
Most VPNs outsource their server management to third parties, but IPVanish does that in-house. It immediately fixes server downtimes and optimizes them for fast speeds for lag-free gaming. I could play online games like League of Legends and Dota 2 with IPVanish without experiencing any lag.
I ran multiple speed tests to evaluate IPVanish’s performance over distances. I got fast speeds on nearby and mid-range servers in the US and UK, respectively. However, my speeds dropped by over 25% on distant servers, and I got noticeable lag while playing League of Legends.
On the security front, IPVanish has an in-built antivirus to protect you from infected files shared in-game and also has:
- Multiple VPN protocols — Tweak your speed-security spectrum with WireGuard, OpenVPN (UDP/TCP), IKEv2, IPSec, or L2TP protocols
- Solid leak protection — Ensures no DNS, IPv6, and WebRTC leaks to prevent DDoS attacks
The main issue I had was giving my email address and other personal information while signing up for IPVanish — my worry being that IPVanish is headquartered in the US. Thankfully, IPVanish has an audited no-logs policy so whatever you do online isn’t tracked.
Of IPVanish’s 3 plans, I recommend the 2-year plan as it’s available at a discounted monthly price of $3.33. You can try IPVanish completely risk-free with its 30-day money-back guarantee — if you have any reservations, just cancel your subscription from the dashboard.
VPN unblocks: Hotstar, ITV Hub, Discovery+, Paramount+, Showtime, Vudu, and more
VPN works on: Windows, macOS, Linux, Chromebook, Android, iOS, Chrome, and more
5. PureVPN — Port Forwarding Lets You Host Online Gaming Servers Remotely
- 6,500+ servers in over 78 countries to seamlessly access geo-blocked games from restrictive countries
- Fast speeds on nearby and mid-range servers for lag-free online gaming
- Excellent leak protection to keep you safe from DDoS attacks while gaming online
- Play League of Legends on 10 at a time on a single subscription
- 31-day money-back guarantee
PureVPN’s port forwarding feature lets you host your LoL server to play remotely among friends. Incoming connections bypass your router’s NAT firewall and can easily connect to your gaming server, improving connection speeds and reducing wait times. Be cautious when using port forwarding since direct access to your computer without security protocols can make it vulnerable and prone to malware attacks.
Leaks are a common culprit behind DDoS attacks on gamers. I ran several DNS, IP, and WebRTC leak tests and found that PureVPN kept my data secure. In addition, it encrypts your internet traffic using military-grade AES 256-bit encryption, which takes billions of years of brute force to decrypt. It also packs the following useful add-ons for gamers:
- Dedicated IP — Fetches you an exclusive IP address to get past VPN detection software and access games otherwise not available in your country.
- DDoS Protection — Provides special protection against DDoS attacks to ensure an uninterrupted online gaming experience.
After running extensive speed tests, I had mixed thoughts about PureVPN’s performance. I got excellent speeds on nearby and mid-range servers, but my ping went over 200ms on faraway servers, making lag-free online gaming almost impossible.
After hours of online gaming, I searched PureVPN’s dashboard to see if it has optimized servers for gaming to compensate for its slow speeds on distant servers — unfortunately, it does not. So, you can only play lag-free on nearby servers. Thankfully, finding one shouldn’t be difficult as PureVPN has a large network of 6,500 servers.
If you’re interested in buying PureVPN, I suggest you skip the monthly plan and go for its 2-year + 4 months plan so you can take full advantage of its 79% discount and get free extra months. Making a long-term commitment can be uncertain but you can try PureVPN out completely risk-free with its 31-day money-back guarantee.
VPN unblocks: Disney+, Hulu, BBC iPlayer, HBO Max, Amazon Prime Video, and more
VPN works on: Windows, macOS, Linux, Chromebook, Android, iOS, and more
Comparison Table: 2023’s Best VPNs for League of Legends
|Server Coverage||DDoS Protection||Protocol Options||Port Forwarding||Gaming-Optimized Servers|
|ExpressVPN||3,000 servers||✔||Lightway, OpenVPN, IKEv2||✔||✔|
|CyberGhost||9,000 servers||✔||OpenVPN, WireGuard, IKEv2||✘||✔|
|PIA||35,000 servers||✔||OpenVPN, PPTP, L2TP/IPSec||✔||✘|
|IPVanish||2,000 servers||✔||WireGuard, OpenVPN, IKEv2, IPSec, L2TP||✘||✘|
|PureVPN||6,500 servers||✔||WireGuard, OpenVPN, IKEv2||✔
How I Tested and Ranked the Best VPNs for League of Legends
I considered the following aspects throughout my VPN testing process:
- Server coverage — To ensure efficient data exchange and fast speeds while playing League of Legends, I carefully selected virtual private networks (VPNs) that offer a broad network coverage. This way, it becomes more convenient to locate servers in close proximity to those of League of Legends, facilitating swift connectivity and optimal performance.
- Security features — I tried to find VPNs with AES 256-bit encryption, 100% leak protection, and most importantly, DDoS protection for lag-less gaming
- Speeds — I tested each contender for fast speeds and pings on nearby and distant servers
- Protocol flexibility — I handpicked VPNs that let me choose my preferred protocol to tweak my speed-security ratio how I like it
- Ease of use — I was particular about how easy to set up and use each VPN is so that it’s not a hassle to use it every time you want to start gaming
- Money-back guarantee — I chose VPNs that offer a money-back guarantee
Play League of Legends with ExpressVPN
FAQs: VPNs and League of Legends
Is a VPN good for League of Legends?
Can I use a free VPN for gaming?
Yes, but it’s risky. I recommend using a top VPN like ExpressVPN because it provides lightning-fast speeds even on distant servers. It also offers top-notch security to guard you against DDoS attacks and prevent your IP address from leaking.
While there are some good free VPNs you can use for online gaming, most of them have overcrowded servers that give slow speeds. Free VPNs often have a small server network and may lack the security features for peace-of-mind gaming. They may also have sketchy privacy policies that allow them to store your data. Worse yet, they may carry viruses and infect your computer as soon as you install them.
Does a VPN lower ping for League of Legends?
Is it illegal to use a VPN to access League of Legends?
No, it’s perfectly legal to access League of Legends with a VPN. I’ve picked out the top VPNs that provide excellent speeds and security for lag-free gaming. They also have a large server network, so you can easily find servers near the game’s.
Some school or work networks may restrict you from certain programs and online games. A VPN can bypass these restrictions, but I won’t recommend it since it may violate your institution or company’s rules.
Playing League of Legends has its fair share of problems. You may get a high ping if you’re located too far from the game’s server. Worse yet, a DDoS attack may cost you your victory.
Using a reliable VPN is the best way to address these problems. After rigorous testing, I picked out the top VPNs you can use to play League of Legends lag-free, without the risk of a DDoS attack.
ExpressVPN is my #1 choice for League of Legends. It provides lightning-fast speeds using its effective Lightway protocol even on very distant servers. It also has excellent leak protection and encryption capabilities to keep you safe from any DDoS attacks while gaming. You can buy ExpressVPN in confidence as it’s backed by a 30-day money-back guarantee — if you aren’t satisfied with its performance, you can claim a full refund.