Does VPN Help Reduce Ping? 5 Low Ping VPNs (Tested)
Can VPN Help Reduce Ping: Key Points
- Using a VPN can lower your ping because a VPN will be sending data packets through an efficient and more direct route compared to your regular network connection. This results in better performance and lower latency.
- A VPN used on long-distance servers may increase your ping due to the encryption process
- Using a VPN protects from DDoS and Swatting attacks, and can bypass ISP throttling while gaming
- In our opinion, NordVPN is the best VPN service for gaming with lowered ping
Online gamers highly value stable network connections and low ping for smoother and more enjoyable gameplay. That’s especially true for online multiplayer games where every second counts.
However, maintaining less ping can be complicated as many factors can impact it. To bypass these issues, many gamers and streamers use a VPN service.
Our detailed guide answers the all-important question “Does VPN help with ping” and provides tips on how to increase your network performance.
We also discuss the five best VPNs for gaming to determine how VPNs affect ping when you’re playing your favorite online game.
Best Low-Ping VPNs – our shortlist:
- NordVPN – the best low-ping VPN service for gaming
- Surfshark – a great choice for no lag and split tunneling
- AtlasVPN – a budget option to improve ping
- PrivateVPN – a great choice for stable gaming
- ExpressVPN – a good low-latency VPN for gaming with minimal lag
What Causes Ping Time to Increase?
Ping is a critical metric for online gaming, as it measures the time it takes for data to travel from your device to the game server and back. A high ping time can cause lag, delays, and even disconnects, which can ruin your experience while gaming.
These are the reasons why ping can skyrocket:
- ISP throttling: Some ISPs throttle or limit the bandwidth of certain types of traffic, such as gaming traffic, which can result in higher ping times.
- DDoS attacks: Distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attacks can overload game servers with traffic, resulting in high ping times and even crashes.
- Distance: The further you are from the game server, the longer it takes for data to travel to and from it, resulting in high ping times.
- Server load: If a game server is experiencing high traffic, it can slow down and lead to high ping times.
- Network congestion: When too many people are using the same network, it can become congested, leading to slow internet connection and high ping times.
- Network quality: Poor network quality, such as weak signals or outdated equipment, can also cause high ping times.
To lower your ping and improve your gaming experience, using a VPN can be an effective solution.
VPN packets take a more direct route to travel as compared to data packets by your internet provider. They also travel faster than the normal isp packet, which can reduce the distance data has to travel and improve network quality.
Additionally, a VPN can help you avoid network congestion, prevent throttling by ISPs, and protect against DDoS attacks.
Does VPN Help with Ping?
So, can a VPN reduce ping? The short answer is yes, using a VPN can help reduce ping in certain situations. However, there are also cases where a VPN may not improve your ping times. Here are a few examples:
When Can a VPN lower Ping
- Overcoming ISP throttling: If your Internet Service Provider is limiting your bandwidth for gaming traffic, using a VPN to connect through a hidden IP address can help you bypass these restrictions and reduce your ping times.
- Avoiding network congestion: When multiple users are connected to the same network, it can become congested, leading to high ping times. A VPN can reroute your traffic to a less congested server, reducing ping times.
- Reducing distance: If you are playing on a server that is located far away from your physical geographic location, a VPN can reroute your traffic through a server that is closer to the game server, reducing the distance data has to travel and improving ping times.
When a VPN May Not Work for Lowering Ping
A VPN may not have any or the opposite effect on latency and gameplay in some of the situations:
- Improving network quality: If your network is experiencing poor quality due to weak signals or outdated equipment, a VPN may not be able to improve your ping times.
- Adding encryption: VPN encrypts data to provide security and privacy. This encryption process can add overhead to your connection, resulting in higher ping times. This is especially noticeable on long-distance servers.
- Using an already-optimized connection: If your network is already optimized for gaming, using a VPN may not provide any significant improvement in ping times.
Best Low-Ping VPNs – our detailed list:
If you’re searching for the best VPN for reducing ping, look no further than NordVPN. This VPN provides over 5,300 servers in 59 countries. But, when you look past the great numbers and into the service details, you begin to notice just how great NordVPN is.
Its NordLynx protocol for gaming is capable of supporting the fastest network connections with minimal lag and ping.
The service offers you apps and extensions for all major platforms and devices. NordVPN’s apps are very stable and reliable. Not only will you get lower latency and ping, but you can expect minimal connection drops and overall very safe and user-friendly service. It includes characteristics like DDoS protection, split tunneling, and a kill switch.
NordVPN Speed Test for Gaming Results
|Average Speed – North America (United States)||46,4 Mbps|
|Average Speed – Europe (United Kingdom)||45,2 Mbps|
|Average Speed – Asia (Singapore)||35,3 Mbps|
|Best deal||63% OFF + Gift|
- Over 5,300 servers in 59 countries, providing ample options for finding a connection with reduced ping
- Easy-to-use user interface
- NordLynx protocol for fast network connections with minimal lag and ping
- Apps and extensions for all major platforms and devices, ensuring maximum compatibility
- Stable and reliable connections with minimal connection drops
- DDoS protection, split tunneling, and a kill switch for added security and control
- RAM-based servers for improved privacy and security
- 100% no-logs policy for maximum privacy
- Only 6 simultaneous connections, which may be limiting for some users
- No free trial, so you’ll have to commit to the service before trying it out
Are you looking for a VPN to enhance your gaming experience? Surfshark is one of the fastest VPNs on the market to give you a competitive advantage.
Surfshark, with over 3,200 servers globally, provides a variety of tools to assist reduce your in-game latency and lag. But it’s not only the quantity of servers that distinguishes Surfshark.
Each server includes private DNS and a strict no-logs policy, guaranteeing that your internet behavior remains secret at all times.
Furthermore, you can select from a number of protocols, including the highly recommended WireGuard protocol. Surfshark allows you to connect an unlimited number of devices at the same time. This means that with only one subscription, you can protect your entire household’s internet activity.
In terms of value for money, Surfshark if budget-friendly and offers a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Surfshark Speed Test for Gaming Results
|Average Speed – North America (United States)||40,1 Mbps|
|Average Speed – Europe (United Kingdom)||39,2 Mbps|
|Average Speed – Asia (Singapore)||35,8 Mbps|
|Best deal||Save 81%|
- WireGuard protocol for fast and reduced ping connections
- Large server network for better ping optimization
- Dedicated gaming servers for improved performance
- CleanWeb feature to block ads and trackers for uninterrupted gameplay
- MultiHop feature for extra security and reduced ping
- GPS Spoofing on Android devices to connect to servers in a different geographic location
- 24/7 customer support via live chat
- 30-day money-back guarantee
- No P2P seeding allowed, limiting file-sharing capabilities
- No free version for those on a budget
For those who wish to have a premium quality service for a price far lower than other VPNs, Atlas VPN is the choice for you, especially if you want a VPN connection to improve ping. 750 incredibly fast servers across the globe, and a 24/7 support team is ready to assist you with anything that you may need at any time.
Unbeatable military-grade encryption methods, full leak protection, and special features at all times are ready to help you reduce any ping that you may experience.
It really is an unmatched service with a full 30-day money-back guarantee and a no-logs policy. Lastly, Atlas VPN is one of the few providers that offer unlimited connections for all its customers. Meaning that with a single account, you could equip your entire home and stay secure!
AtlasVPN Speed Test for Gaming Results
|Average Speed – North America (United States)||35,9 Mbps|
|Average Speed – Europe (United Kingdom)||34,2 Mbps|
|Average Speed – Asia (Singapore)||29,9 Mbps|
|Best deal||83% OFF|
- Very affordable plans and a free version for budget gamers
- Fast speeds that can help reduce average ping and improve gaming performance
- Supports unlimited devices to connect with a single account
- Utilizes WireGuard protocol for a more efficient and secure connection
- Torrenting-friendly service for gamers who need to download large game files
- Unblocks popular streaming services to enjoy while taking breaks from gaming
- Offers a 30-day money-back guarantee to try out the service risk-free
- Limited Linux app availability may be inconvenient for some users
- Based in the US which may raise concerns about privacy and data retention
- Fewer servers than other VPN providers, which could potentially affect connection stability for some gamers.
If you’re looking for a convenient gaming VPN with reliable capabilities for lowering in-game ping, PrivateVPN is a very respectable choice. It’s a very simple and streamlined service that makes VPN use easy and enjoyable.
Still, it comes with a lot of helpful information on your connections. This makes it convenient and easy to find the right combination that maximally lowers your ping. Moreover, there’s a solid server selection globally, ensuring lag-free gaming performance no matter your location.
It’s not the fastest VPN around, but it is very capable of maintaining stable, above-average connections. It allows you to use up unlimited bandwidth and simultaneously connect up to six devices. This means you can easily game and enjoy lower ping on all gaming platforms and devices in your household. Plus, since it has an impressive uptime of 99.98%, it’s a great VPN for gaming in general.
PrivateVPN Speed Test for Gaming Results
|Average Speed – North America (United States)||43,6 Mbps|
|Average Speed – Europe (United Kingdom)||45.9 Mbps|
|Average Speed – Asia (Singapore)||40,1 Mbps|
|Best deal||Save 85%|
- Excellent for gaming with low latency and reduced ping times
- Supports P2P traffic and port forwarding for faster downloads
- Unlimited bandwidth and great speeds for uninterrupted gameplay
- Free Static IP servers for increased stability and reduced lag
- Zero-logging policy for maximum privacy and security
- 10 simultaneous connections for multi-device gaming
- 30-day money-back guarantee for risk-free testing
- Fewer servers compared to some other VPN providers
- No split-tunneling feature for more control over traffic routing
As one of the most sophisticated services in the industry, ExpressVPN is a perfect VPN to reduce latency. It offers fast and reliable connection speeds. The service comes with over 3,000 servers in 160 locations across 94 countries. Equally as important, all servers are RAM-based, guaranteeing maximum privacy and safety.
Outside lowering your gaming ping, you can use ExpressVPN for many other online purposes. It’s excellent for torrenting and performs superbly on all major content streaming platforms.
Accordingly, it also comes with one of the most expensive subscription plans. Still, it’s a premium VPN that can reduce ping very efficiently and is worth every penny.
ExpressVPN Speed Test for Gaming Results
|Average Speed – North America (United States)||42,2 Mbps|
|Average Speed – Europe (United Kingdom)||40,9 Mbps|
|Average Speed – Asia (Singapore)||38,1 Mbps|
|Best deal||+3 months FREE|
- Excellent ping reduction for gaming
- Over 3,000 RAM-based servers in 94 countries
- TrustedServer technology for faster connections
- Private DNS on all servers
- Split-tunneling for specific apps and websites
- Zero-knowledge DNS and leak protection features
- 24/7 customer support with live chat
- Offers unlimited bandwidth and server switches
- More expensive compared to other VPN services
- Only allows 5 simultaneous connections per subscription
Testing Methodology: How we selected VPNs for lowering ping
To determine which VPNs are best for lowering ping and lag-free gaming, we considered several criteria:
- Low ping: The VPN should offer reduced ping times, as this is crucial for online gaming.
- Fast speeds: The VPN should have fast connection speeds to ensure a smooth gaming experience.
- DDoS protection: Protection against DDoS attacks is essential for online gaming, as these attacks can cause high ping times and even game crashes.
- Compatibility with your gaming consoles: For console gamers, it’s important to choose a VPN that works seamlessly with gaming consoles such as Xbox, PlayStation, and Nintendo Switch.
- Extra features: Some VPNs offer additional features such as split-tunneling, which allows you to choose which apps use the VPN, and ad-blocking, which can help improve speeds.
- Server locations: The number and locations of proxy servers can affect your ping times, so we considered VPNs with multiple servers in a wide range of locations. This ensures that you can find a suitable server location for the best experience.
- Price: We also considered the price of each VPN.
Pros and Cons of Using a VPN to Help with Ping
Using a gaming VPN can have several advantages, including avoiding ISP bandwidth throttling and streamlining your network connection. VPNs can also potentially help you save money on game purchases and gain access to geo-blocked online games, and protect against DDoS attacks.
However, there are also some disadvantages to consider, such as the possibility that a VPN may actually increase your ping instead of lowering it. The fact that connecting to remote servers may increase your ping and lower your connection speed.
It may take some trial and error to find the best VPN server and settings to achieve the desired results.
|Can help lower ping when properly set up||Sometimes VPN can increase ping|
|Help avoid bandwidth throttling||Cannot game on long-distance servers|
|Streamlines network connection||May decrease internet speed|
|Access games that are geo-blocked||Can be costly or require a subscription|
|Protects against DDoS attacks||May not work with all online games or consoles|
|Can improve security and privacy||May require some technical knowledge to set up|
|Can help find cheaper game prices||May affect the game’s graphics and frame rate|
|Some VPNs offer additional features such as malware and ad-blockers|
How Can My VPN Lower Ping?
If you’re experiencing a high ping time while playing online games, a VPN might be able to help. Here are some tips to help you reduce your ping with a VPN:
- Connect to a VPN server that is geographically closer to the local game servers you’re playing on. This can reduce the distance your data has to travel and, therefore, lower your ping.
- Use a VPN protocol that is known for low latency and fast speeds, such as WireGuard. This can help you achieve faster ping times when gaming.
- Choose a VPN provider with a large server network to ensure you have plenty of options to choose from when connecting to a server closer to the game servers.
- Use a VPN with a fast and stable connection to ensure your data travels smoothly and without interruption.
It’s important to note that using a VPN doesn’t always guarantee a lower ping. Here are some cases when a VPN may not help reduce your ping:
- If your internet connection is already unstable or slow, a VPN may not improve your ping time.
- If you connect to a VPN server that is far away from the gaming server, you may actually increase your ping times due to the increased distance your data has to travel.
- Some VPN providers may have slower speeds or higher latency, which can negatively impact your ping time.
Overall, while a VPN can be a helpful tool in reducing ping time while gaming, it’s important to choose a reliable and fast VPN provider and connect to a server that is geographically closer to the game server for the best results.
VPN Ping FAQs
Which gaming VPN gives the lowest ping?
According to our tests, NordVPN had the lowest ping and fastest speeds for gaming.
Can a VPN lower ping?
Yes, a VPN can lower your ping by rerouting your internet traffic through a server closer to the game server. This reduces the distance your data has to travel, resulting in lower ping.
Which VPN is the fastest for gaming?
Is A VPN good for gaming?
A VPN can be good for gaming, especially online multiplayer games, as it can improve security, bypass restrictions, and lower ping. However, not all VPNs are optimized for gaming, and some may slow down your internet speed. Based on our review, the best VPN for gaming is NordVPN.
How much does a VPN improve ping?
The amount of ping reduction a VPN can offer depends on factors such as server distance, network congestion, and the VPN provider’s infrastructure. In general, a good VPN can lower ping by 10-30ms or more.
Can a VPN help increase ping speeds?
It is unlikely that a VPN will increase ping speed, but it can happen. If you connect to a server that is far away or use a congested network, the VPN may slow down your internet speed and increase your ping.
What is a good gaming ping speed?
A good gaming ping is anything under 50ms. However, some gamers prefer ping speeds as low as 10-20ms, especially for fast-paced online games.
What’s the best VPN server for lowering ping?
The best VPN server for lowering ping depends on your location and the game server’s location. Ideally, you should connect to a server closest to the game server. Most VPNs have a “ping time” feature that can help you choose the best server.
Can I use a free VPN to help lower ping?
You can use a free VPN to reduce ping. However, most free VPNs have limitations like data caps, server restrictions, and poor performance, which can negatively affect your ping. It’s recommended to avoid using a free VPN for the best experience.
Can I use a VPN connection for Fortnite to reduce ping?
Yes, you can use a VPN for Fortnite to reduce ping. By connecting to a server closer to the Fortnite server, you can reduce the distance your data has to travel and lower your ping.
Which VPN is a low ping for ML?
Can a VPN Lower Ping – The Bottom Line
Using VPN to lower ping is a great way to improve your online gaming experience. It can protect from DDoS attacks and access restricted gaming content.
Although any VPN can help lower your ping, some VPNs are better suited for gaming than others.
We think that NordVPN is overall the best VPN for gaming. With its NordLynx protocol and no-logs policy, NordVPN is the top choice for reducing latency. And with its 30-day money-back guarantee, you can try it risk-free.