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Beijing Thoughts: VPNs

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  • Beijing Thoughts: VPNs

    The right VPN will work here. I don't want to provide specific ones that I know to work (I think they are technically illegal but I've never heard of a foreign visitor getting messed with for having one) but certain vendors advertise their services as working in China. Some are better than others. Or sometimes they work and sometimes they don't. It's a cat and mouse game as far as I can tell but my VPN can pretty much always connect. However, the performance can vary.

    If you get a VPN I'd highly recommend you get a paid one for a month (or whatever) and cancel it when you get back if you don't want it anymore. Or some have a free trail period. Make sure you signup, install the app, and set it up before you come to China. The Google Play store is completely blocked without a VPN. The Apple app store should be available.

    Things that are definitely blocked without some type of bypass option: anything Google related (e.g., gmail, hangouts, maps), Twitter, Facebook, New York Times, WhatsApp, etc.