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How to Use Grindr in Dubai and the UAE (Updated 2022)

Kate Hawkins
Last Updated by Kate Hawkins on May 26, 2022

Visiting the UAE for a holiday or work, and don’t want to get locked out of your Grindr account?

Short for Virtual Private Network, a quality VPN hides your real IP address, so you can anonymously log onto Grindr through an encrypted connection. No one can spy on your online dating life, including advertisers, hackers, web trackers, and other malicious third parties.

Based on rigorous tests, I found ExpressVPN is the best for security and speed in 2022. It’s backed by a 30-day money-back guarantee, so you can test it for yourself without any risk. If you don’t like it, you can request a refund within 30 days with no questions asked.

Safely access Grindr with ExpressVPN

Important! Grindr is blocked in the UAE, so you must exercise caution if you choose to use the app with a VPN when visiting the UAE. My team and I don’t condone any illegal activity.

3 Easy Steps: How to Use Grindr from the UAE in 2022

  1. Get a VPN. ExpressVPN’s top-tier security and speed make it the top choice for accessing Grindr anywhere.
  2. Connect to a server. Choose a nearby server in your country to find local profiles on Grindr.
  3. Start socializing on Grindr! Download Grindr to your device, create your profile, and start chatting with local users straight away.

Safely access Grindr with ExpressVPN

Top Tip: Make sure you download your VPN before visiting the UAE, as your VPN website may be blocked or inaccessible once you’re in the country.

The Best VPNs for Grindr in the UAE (Updated May 2022)

1. ExpressVPN — Blazing-Fast Speeds and Proven No-Logs Privacy Policy

Key Features:

  • 3000+ servers in 94+ countries
  • Military-grade encryption, IP and DNS leak protection, kill switch, and RAM-only servers
  • Baesd in the British Virgin Islands and has a strict no-logs policy
  • 24/7 customer support over live chat and email
  • 30-day money-back guarantee

ExpressVPN is the #1 VPN for connecting to Grindr in the UAE due to its high-level security and privacy features. Every server connection uses military-grade encryption and has built-in data leak protection, meaning no prying third parties can detect your online activity. I found this makes ExpressVPN ideal for Grindr as it keeps your personal data secure.

All of ExpressVPN’s servers run using RAM, which means they can’t physically store any data and are wiped clean on every reboot. This was proven in 2017, when a Turkish ExpressVPN server was seized as part of a criminal investigation but no data was recovered. ExpressVPN has also had its privacy policy independently audited to confirm it never logs user data — making your Grindr connection completely anonymous.

Alongside top-tier security and privacy, ExpressVPN has super-fast speeds to make sure you never miss a Grindr message. I tested multiple ExpressVPN servers and found my speeds dropped a tiny 18% on average, even when connecting to servers 15,000km away.

Screenshots of Ookla speed test results with ExpressVPN connected to multiple global servers.

ExpressVPN’s speeds are consistently fast on all server connections

These fast speeds are due in part to ExpressVPN’s proprietary Lightway protocol, designed to minimize speed loss without impacting your data security. With ExpressVPN, you can instantly load and connect with new users on Grindr, stream Netflix in HD quality, torrent, and game online without interruption.

The only downside to ExpressVPN is that its iOS app doesn’t have a kill switch. This feature cuts your access to the internet if the VPN connection is interrupted, securing your data. However, given the excellent internet speeds and reliability in Dubai and the UAE, it’s unlikely you’ll need this feature. If you do want the extra layer of security, CyberGhost has a kill switch on all of its apps.

I recommend you download ExpressVPN before visiting Dubai and the UAE as you may find the website is blocked when you arrive. If you’re not completely satisfied with the service, you can get a full refund as ExpressVPN is backed by a 30-day money-back guarantee.

If you’re outside the UAE, you can ask the customer support team over the 24/7 live chat service. If you’re still in the UAE, just send customer service an email at support@expressvpn.zendesk.com and they’ll arrange your refund. I tested the process myself and it was surprisingly easy. I wasn’t asked to reconsider canceling or to troubleshoot any issues, and I had my money back in just 5 days.

ExpressVPN unblocks: Scruff, Hornet, Tinder, WhatsApp, Skype, Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, BBC iPlayer, Disney+, HBO Max, Showtime, Sling TV, Hulu, ESPN, DAZN, YouTube, Facebook, and more.

ExpressVPN works on: Android, iOS, Windows, macOS, Linux, Chrome, Firefox, PlayStation, Xbox, Smart TVs, Apple TV, Amazon Fire Stick, Amazon Fire TV, routers, and more.

Safely access Grindr with ExpressVPN

May 2022 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 — Automatic Kill Switch Encrypts Your Grindr Activities

Key Features:

  • 7900+ servers in 90+ countries
  • AES-256-bit encryption, built=in leak protection, automatic kill switch, and malware blocker
  • Based in Romania and has a no-logs policy
  • 24/7 live chat and email support available
  • 45-day money-back guarantee

CyberGhost’s Android and iOS apps feature high-level security, making it ideal for using Grindr when you’re traveling to Dubai or the UAE. Every connection supports military-grade encryption and data leak protection, plus CyberGhost features an automatic kill switch on every app. Many VPNs don’t feature an iOS kill switch, putting CyberGhost at an advantage if you want that extra security — ensuring your Grindr activity is protected if your connection is interrupted.

CyberGhost also features automatic WiFi protection. I configured this top-tier feature to automatically connect to the nearest CyberGhost server whenever my device detects a new WiFi network. This means you can take your smartphone or tablet anywhere and you won’t be exposed to shady networks without protection.

Screenshot of CyberGhost VPN's automatic WiFi protection feature on iPhone
Set your WiFi protection to “Always connect” for the best security

I was pleased to find CyberGhost offers multiple tunneling protocols, including WireGuard. This lightweight protocol helps to keep speeds fast without compromising your security and is less likely to trigger VPN blocks than other protocols. As such, I had no issues connecting to Grindr and could respond to my messages without interruption.

My issue with CyberGhost is that it hasn’t undergone an independent security audit like other top-tier VPNs. This would give me peace of mind that its zero-logs policy is accurate, so I could guarantee my Grindr activity is secure and anonymous. However, CyberGhost does use RAM-based servers that cannot store data, so it’s unlikely that your connection information will be logged.

I suggest you try CyberGhost with Grindr for yourself to see if it’s the right choice for you. If you change your mind, CyberGhost has a generous 45-day money-back guarantee you can use like a free trial. Once you’re finished with your trip to the UAE, you can contact customer service and get a full refund. When I tested the process myself, I had my money back in my account in less than a week.

CyberGhost unblocks: Scruff, Hornet, Tinder, WhatsApp, Skype, Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, BBC iPlayer, Disney+, HBO Max, Showtime, Sling TV, Hulu, ESPN, YouTube, Facebook, and more.

CyberGhost works on: Android, iOS, Windows, macOS, Linux, Chrome, Firefox, PlayStation, Xbox, Smart TVs, Apple TV, Amazon Fire Stick, Amazon Fire TV, routers, and more.

Safely access Grindr with CyberGhost

May 2022 Update! You can subscribe to CyberGhost for as low as $2.29 per month + get extra 3 months free with the 3-year plan (save up to 83%)! This is a limited offer so grab it now before it's gone. See more information on this offer here.

3. Private Internet Access — 30+ Servers for Secure Access to Grindr

Key Features:

  • 35000+ servers in 80+ countries
  • Military-grade encryption, kill switch, and multiple tunneling protocols
  • Based in US with an audited zero-logs policy
  • 24/7 live chat and email support
  • 30-day money-back guarantee

Private Internet Access (PIA) has an enormous global server network, so you’ll always have access to a nearby connection. You won’t have to worry about your data being logged by PIA’s servers, as it has undergone multiple independent audits to confirm it never stores user data. If you want to remain truly anonymous, you can even pay with cryptocurrency or gift cards.

Every app has a built-in kill switch, and every server connection uses AES-256-bit encryption as standard. I was also pleased to find PIA offers the secure WireGuard tunneling protocol on its mobile apps. Choosing WireGuard ensures you’ll get the best possible connection speeds. When I configured the WireGuard protocol, I found my speeds were around 10Mbps faster than with OpenVPN or IKEv2.

Screenshots detailing how to change the VPN protocol on an iOS mobile app.
Changing PIA’s protocol is quick and easy in its mobile apps

However, PIA is slightly slower than ExpressVPN and CyberGhost. Even with the high-speed internet infrastructure in the UAE, I found it took a few seconds longer for Grindr to load and to access my messages. Connecting to a server further away caused a more significant drop in speed, which could cause issues with instant messaging, streaming, or visiting websites.

That said, PIA’s prices start at just $2.19 for a 2-year plan, making it an affordable monthly VPN option.

Given PIA’s low price, you may not mind waiting a few more seconds to access Grindr. I recommend you try PIA with Grindr for yourself, and you can do so risk-free as it’s backed by a 30-day money-back guarantee.

PIA unblocks: Scruff, Hornet, Tinder, WhatsApp, Skype, Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Disney+, HBO Max, Showtime, Sling TV, Hulu, ESPN, YouTube, Facebook, and more.

PIA works on: Android, iOS, Windows, macOS, Linux, Chrome, Firefox, routers, and more.

Safely access Grindr with PIA

May 2022 Update! For a limited time only, save 82% with the 2-year plan + get an additional 2 months free! Hurry and check out the deal here!

4. PrivateVPN — Stealth VPN Feature Keeps VPN Activity Anonymous in the UAE

Key Features:

  • 200+ servers in 63+ countries
  • AES-256-bit encryption, automatic kill switch, and public WiFi protection
  • Based in Sweden with a zero-logs privacy policy
  • Live chat support with developers (and even a remote setup option)
  • 30-day money-back guarantee

All of PrivateVPN’s apps have a Stealth VPN feature that is useful for masking your VPN activity when you’re using Grindr. When it’s switched on, it makes your VPN connection look like regular internet traffic. This makes it harder for third parties to detect your VPN use and keeps your Grindr connections completely anonymous.

Screenshots of PrivateVPN iOS app detailing how to switch on the Stealth VPN server obfuscation feature.
PrivateVPN’s Stealth VPN is available on Android and iOS devices

In terms of connection security, PrivateVPN offers military-grade encryption, data leak protection, and a kill switch to keep your data safe. I ran multiple leak tests and found PrivateVPN kept my data secure within its encrypted tunnels. It’s worth noting PrivateVPN hasn’t had an independent audit of its privacy policy, so you’ll have to trust it won’t log your activity.

PrivateVPN is on the smaller side, with a network of only 200 servers — and only 1 server connection in the UAE. This could cause issues at peak traffic times, as a single server can quickly get overloaded and congested with users. As such, you could encounter a speed slowdown or even fail to connect. In my experience, it took no longer than 2 minutes to successfully connect to PrivateVPN.

If you want that extra layer of anonymity, PrivateVPN’s Stealth VPN feature is worth testing for yourself. The service is backed by a 30-day money-back guarantee, so if you change your mind then you can easily get a full refund.

PrivateVPN unblocks: Scruff, Hornet, Tinder, WhatsApp, Skype, Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Disney+, HBO Max, Showtime, Sling TV, Hulu, ESPN, YouTube, Facebook, and more.

PrivateVPN works on: Android, iOS, Windows, macOS, Linux, Chrome, Firefox, routers, and more.

Safely access Grindr with PrivateVPN

May 2022 Update! PrivateVPN has dropped prices for a limited time to a crazy $2 per month with the 3-year plan (you can save up to 85%)! This is a limited offer so be sure to grab it now before it’s gone. See more information on this offer here.

5. IPVanish — Connect Unlimited Devices at Once to Access Grindr On Every Device You Own

Key Features:

  • 2000+ servers in 75+ countries
  • AES-256-bit encryption, automatic kill switch, and secure tunneling protocols
  • Located in the US with a no-logs policy and ownership of all servers
  • 24/7 live chat and email support
  • 30-day money-back guarantee

IPVanish is one of the only top VPNs to offer unlimited device connections, so you can protect your smartphones, computers, Smart TVs, and more with a single subscription. This is especially convenient for Grindr, as you don’t have to choose which device to protect when accessing the app — you can secure every device at the same time.

I was concerned that multiple connections would slow my speed, but IPVanish has excellent speeds. It was only when I connected more than 6 devices at once that I noticed a slight slowdown (I couldn’t stream in HD quality) — but I could still open Grindr, swipe profiles, and respond to messages without interruption.

IPVanish keeps your Grindr activity anonymous with AES-256-bit encryption and data leak protection. Unfortunately, there is no kill switch on IPVanish’s iOS app, although one is available for Android users. IPVanish hasn’t yet undergone an independent audit either, so its zero-logs policy hasn’t been confirmed. If this is a concern for you, I suggest choosing a service like ExpressVPN, which is regularly audited to prove its no-logs policy.

If you want to secure multiple devices when traveling to the UAE, I suggest you test IPVanish with Grindr yourself risk-free. Getting a refund is easy if you’re not satisfied — just log in to your account, click Subscriptions and Cancel Now. I had my money back in less than an hour.

IPVanish unblocks: Scruff, Hornet, Tinder, WhatsApp, Skype, Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Disney+, Showtime, Sling TV, Hulu, ESPN, YouTube, Facebook, and more.

IPVanish works on: Android, iOS, Windows, macOS, Linux, Chrome, Firefox, routers, and more.

Safely access Grindr with IPVanish

Comparison Table: Best VPNs for Grindr and the UAE in 2022

Here is a quick overview of the key security features and app availability for the top VPNs for Grindr.

No-Logs Policy Company Jurisdiction Kill Switch iOS App Android App
ExpressVPN
Audited
British Virgin Islands
Android only
CyberGhost
Not audited
Romania
PIA
Audited
US
PrivateVPN
Not audited
Sweden
IPVanish
Not audited
US
Android only

Of all the VPNs tested, ExpressVPN is the #1 choice for accessing Grindr in the UAE and worldwide. ExpressVPN has an audited zero-logs policy, top-tier apps for iOS and Android, and has its headquarters in a privacy haven — working together to keep your online activity secure and anonymous.

Safely access Grindr with ExpressVPN

Detailed Guide: How to Download Grindr on the App Store From Anywhere

If you haven’t downloaded Grindr before your visit to the UAE, you can use the following methods to access the app and your local account while on vacation. Bear in mind that Grindr is blocked in the UAE by law, so you should be cautious — it’s best to download Grindr before you arrive.

Download Grindr from the Apple App Store (iOS)

  1. Get a VPN and connect to a server. ExpressVPN has thousands of secure servers ideal for downloading Grindr privately.
  2. Visit the Apple App Store and search for “Grindr.” The app should appear at the top of your screen.
  3. Open Grindr and create an account, or sign in to your existing account. If you create a new account, you’ll have to enter a real phone number for verification purposes. If you can’t access a phone number from your home country, you can use any number. Grindr doesn’t check that your phone number and signup country are the same.
  4. Start chatting with like-minded LGBTQ+ users on Grindr! Make sure you stay connected to the VPN

If you don’t already have an Apple ID to use the App Store, you can create a new one in your home country by following these steps:

  1. Get a VPN. A service like ExpressVPN has fast speeds across its global network, so you’ll have your account set up in no time.
  2. Connect to a server. You can choose a server in your home country, if you’re traveling to the UAE and want to keep up with local matches.
  3. Visit the Apple website and select Create your Apple ID. You’ll have to enter your phone number for verification purposes — this can be in a different region from your home country.
  4. Once your Apple ID is confirmed, visit the Apple App Store. Sign in with your new Apple ID.
  5. Now you can download Grindr to your iOS device! You’ll be asked to enter an address in your home country and review your payment method, but just select “None” as Grindr is a free app.

Safely access Grindr with ExpressVPN

Get Grindr from the Google Play Store (Android)

  1. Get a VPN. Choose a server in your home country to connect to — I recommend ExpressVPN for its fast speeds and secure servers for Grindr.
  2. Visit the Google Play Store and search for “Grindr.” Make sure you stay connected to the VPN while you download the app.
  3. Open Grindr and sign in or create a new account. Now you’re ready to start chatting with other Grindr users.

If you need to create a new Google Play account to download Grindr when in the UAE, follow these steps:

  1. Download a VPN. Connect to a server in your home country — ExpressVPN’s Android app turns green to show that your server connection is secure.
  2. Click on your username and then choose Add another account in the Google Play Store. Follow the steps to create a new Google Play account — bear in mind that Google sometimes asks for a phone number in the same region as your new account for verification purposes.
  3. Sign in with your new Google Play account. Now you’re ready to download Grindr and start chatting!

Safely access Grindr with ExpressVPN

How I Tested and Ranked VPNs for Grindr and the UAE

I tested over 30 services to find the best VPNs in 2022 for accessing Grindr. Each VPN test was based on the following criteria and the services ranked accordingly:

  • Works with Grindr in the UAE — All of the above VPNs work without issue so you can access Grindr in the UAE. These VPNs also work with other blocked apps like Skype, WhatsApp, and VoIP services.
  • Top-tier security features — Every VPN includes AES-256-bit encryption, data leak protection, and an automatic kill switch to keep your Grindr activity secure and anonymous.
  • No-logs policy — None of the top VPNs keep logs or store user data relating to your online activity, ensuring your privacy when using Grindr. The best VPNs have also undergone a successful independent audit to confirm the zero-logs policy.
  • Fast speeds — It’s essential your VPN can mitigate any speed loss caused by encryption, so Grindr profiles, pictures, and messages are available instantly.
  • Mobile apps — Grindr’s mobile apps are the easiest and most convenient to use, so I made sure every recommended VPN has dedicated apps for iOS and Android.

Safely access Grindr with ExpressVPN

FAQs: VPNs and Using Grindr in the UAE

What’s the best free VPN for Grindr in the UAE?

Unfortunately, the top free VPNs on the market aren’t suitable for using Grindr in the UAE. While they provide a good level of security and privacy, they also have strict limitations that negatively affect your Grindr experience. A handful of server options can make it difficult to connect with LGBTQ+ users in your home country, and data limits only allow a few swipes and private messages before you hit the data cap.

If you find a free VPN that promises no restrictions, you should be extremely cautious. Completely free VPNs still have to generate revenue and often make money in shady ways like logging your data and online activity to sell to third-party advertisers. This means your Grindr activity could be exposed, and the UAE is not somewhere you want your private relationships to become public knowledge — all relationships outside of heterosexuality are prohibited.

Instead of risking your privacy, I suggest you choose a high-quality VPN with a generous money-back guarantee policy, like CyberGhost. CyberGhost gives all users 45 days to use the service, just like a free trial. This means you can use CyberGhost during your trip to the UAE, and when you get home, you can get a full refund with no questions asked.

CyberGhost’s 24/7 live chat makes it quick and easy to get a refund

Is it safe to use Grindr in Dubai and the UAE?

You should exercise caution when using Grindr in Dubai and the UAE, even when connected through a VPN. A high-quality VPN like the services listed here will keep your connection to Grindr private and anonymous, but it can’t protect the information you share through the app, like photos and instant messages.

Grindr’s privacy policy states that it may log messages, including photos or audio messages, so don’t share anything you wouldn’t want to be made public — just in case Grindr ever experiences a data leak.

For additional security, I recommend creating your Grindr account using a throwaway email address and only opening the app while connected to your VPN service.

Why isn’t Grindr working in Dubai?

Grindr is blocked in the UAE due to laws that discriminate against LGBTQ+ individuals, so you’ll only be able to access your Grindr account with a top-tier VPN. If you’re not connected to a VPN, you won’t be able to use Grindr, create a profile, or chat with other LGBTQ+ users. The use of VPNs is also prohibited, so ensure you download your VPN app and the software is up-to-date before you visit the UAE.

If you’re connected to a VPN and Grindr still isn’t working, here are a few tips you can try to fix the issue:

  • Switch to a different server in the same country.
  • Use an obfuscated server to mask your VPN connection and avoid a VPN block.
  • Change your tunneling protocol — try WireGuard for top speed and security.
  • Contact customer support — while live chat may be blocked, you can still send an email to your VPN’s customer service team.

Are VPNs legal in Dubai and the UAE?

Yes, it is legal to use a VPN in Dubai and the UAE. All of the top-rated VPNs for Grindr that are listed here are all legal to have installed on your devices when visiting the UAE.

However, it is illegal to use a VPN to access sites and services that are prohibited by UAE law. Gambling sites, adult or pornographic content, and anti-religious sites are blocked, as well as some VoIP services like WhatsApp and Skype, and dating apps like Grindr. If you’re caught using a VPN and engaging in illegal activity, you could be subject to a hefty fine (up to $500,000) or even imprisonment.

My team and I don’t condone using a VPN for illegal activity, and these laws change frequently. You must ensure you’re aware of the rules and regulations before using a VPN in Dubai and the UAE.

Safely access Grindr with ExpressVPN

Protect Your Grindr Activity With a Top-Tier VPN

The only way to securely access your Grindr account when visiting Dubai and the UAE is with a quality VPN. Of all the VPNs I’ve tested, ExpressVPN emerges as the best choice for safely using Grindr with high-level security features protecting your data and making your activity anonymous. Plus, ExpressVPN’s super-fast speeds mean you can instantly check profiles and messages in your home country with no interruptions.

I recommend that you test ExpressVPN’s secure servers and fast speeds for yourself, to make sure it’s right for you. You can test ExpressVPN risk-free for up to 30 days with its money-back guarantee. If you’re not satisfied, you can get a full refund — I used the live chat to speak with a customer service representative who approved my refund in minutes. Best of all, I had my money back in just 5 days.


Summary — Best VPNs for Grindr in the UAE in 2022

Top Choice
ExpressVPN
$6.67 / month Save 48%
CyberGhost VPN
$2.29 / month Save 82%
Private Internet Access
$2.19 / month Save 82%
PrivateVPN
$2.00 / month Save 80%
IPVanish VPN
$3.99 / month Save 64%
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Kate Hawkins
Kate Hawkins is a tech-focused writer and web expert with a keen interest in online security and privacy. She enjoys getting stuck into new technology and researching the latest cybersecurity trends to keep readers informed and safe online.