Living in China

How to use VPN and access Facebook in China

Accessing blocked sites in China, like Facebook, Twitter and Youtube, might first seem problematic, but actually it’s really easy to do. In this blog post I’ll tell you how easy it can be, how much it costs and how to get started.

What is VPN

Wikipedia tells us that VPN is:

A virtual private network (VPN) extends a private network across a public network, such as the Internet. It enables a computer to send and receive data across shared or public networks as if it were directly connected to the private network, while benefitting from the functionality, security and management policies of the private network.

It doesn’t matter if you don’t understand a word from the previous chapter, me either, for us VPN is something magical that lets us bypass the Great Firewall and continue surfing like we’re used to back home.

How to use VPN

Right now I’m using VPN from VPN Privacy and have been using it for many months without problems. With VPN Privacy, you don’t have to download anything, just change the settings and you are ready to go. You can use the same account on any computer or smart phone, but only one at the time.

Speaking of smart phones, I can use the VPN on my iPhone when I’m connected to the wi-fi. The connection isn’t as good as on the computer, but it is enough for me.

On the computer though VPN Privacy is great! It connects quickly, is fast to use and if you need to, fast to turn off too. I remember having problems with connecting once. I emailed the staff, they did something and I was able to connect again. Speak about good customer service!

After paying and getting your account details, just see this clear step by step guide with screenshots to change your VPN settings. After this, connecting to your VPN is as easy as connecting to a wi-fi!

How much does VPN cost?


Above you can see the current prices for VPN security. There is a 30% discount for the first payment and I recommend you to try it out for a month first. If you like the service, you can decide if you want to save and pay for a longer period of time. Here is the monthly cost for different plans (after the discount period):

  • 1 month: 15USD/month
  • 3 months: 13.33USD/month
  • 6 months: 12.50USD/month
  • 1 year: 11.67USD/month

You can pay with credit card, PayPal, Alipay or Webmoney. I’m using PayPal myself which is easy and safe way to pay online.

So if you want to use Facebook, Twitter and Youtube in China, check out VPN Privacy and see if you like the service as much as I do.


If you decide to buy VPN through my affiliate links, you will also support Living a Dream in China. Thank you!


  • Alva

    Thanks Sara, I use Astrill and I can only have it in one device, if I want it in other devices I need to pay another 5 USD/month, the difference is that this VPN costs 5USD/month for my laptop, if I include device..10 per month…then no big gap with yours!
    Any issue to highlight?


    Xavier Rosée Reply:

    Just something to point out…
    You can use Astrill with more than one device, with the %bucks plan. Just not at the same time…
    I took a family plan for me and my GF and it’s up to 5 devices at the same time.
    It might sound overkill, but when you’re watching netflix on the TV (computer plugged on TV), while browsing Facebook, well it fits perfectly :-D


    Sara Jaaksola Reply:

    My VPN really have worked very well, nothing special comes to my mind. After using a free one that stopped working and a paid one which had some problems in the end, it’s so nice to finally have a service that works. And I like that I don’t have to download anything to my computer.


  • Teresa Moya

    Hi Sara! When I was in China I used ProXPN, it is free and works fine. You only need someone with a VPN (or outside China) to set an account for you and that’s all!



    Alva Reply:

    I used ProXPN during my first months in China but after all it suddenly stopped working, I tried unistalling and re-installing again but nothing… it happened the same to my friend….


    R Zhao Reply:

    I haven’t tried that one, but in the past I used free VPNs and eventually they stop working. Even with the paid ones there are problems from time to time but I’ve always found customer service to be great and the problem was resolved very quickly (I’ve used a few different paid VPNs over the past few years, most recently Astrill).

    I think if you are in China short term or not too worried about what you access online, it’s fine to ‘experiment’ with the free ones. But if you don’t want too much hassle or are here for more than a couple months, I honestly think it’s worth paying for a VPN.


    Teresa Moya Reply:

    I used it for a whole year and never stopped working for me!

    But It’s also true that as the time went by I had to wait longer for it to connect because they try to get you to buy the paid version.


    R Zhao Reply:

    Yes, I understand. That was true for many of my friends that used Freegate (a free VPN), it generally worked well for a year or two. It doesn’t work at all now. But that’s not really my point. If you don’t want to deal with uncertainty or hassle, I think paying is the way to go! Just my opinion.


  • Sara Jaaksola

    Thank you for your advice Thomas! I haven’t heard about this before. Right now my VPN have been working really well so haven’t even thought about changhing. Perhaps before I could find out some more information about setting up my own server.


  • Sandrine Gelloz

    I was in China many times and I have
    used a lot os software to have access to facebook ( yes I”m a facebook
    addict^^) but a lot of VPN are very expensive and not always easy to use, so I
    really advise you to use safer vpn, it’s simple and cheaper and it really works
    : s a f e r v p n . c o m ! You can also reach each website all over the world !

    Enjoy your freedom !


    Sara Jaaksola Reply:

    Sandrine, if you want to promote your own VPN, which you are doing, you should say so and not pretend to be a customer.


  • Aaron

    Dears, I have a better VPN for foreigners in countries that censorship internet, it will set you free to access any websites as you do in your hometown, just send me a message to to get more information, it will cost you less than 70$ per year only!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


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