5 Best VPNs for PokerStars (How to Quickly Setup & Play It)

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If you’re itching for a PokerStars game of 6+ Hold’em, I’ll help you scratch that itch regardless of your location!

All you need is my top recommended VPN for PokerStars: NordVPN.

NordVPN has everything you need to play poker to your heart’s content, including servers in countries where PokerStars isn’t blocked (like the UK, Poland, Slovakia, and Germany).

On top of that, NordVPN’s dedicated IP add-on adds an extra layer of security and privacy to your PokerStars experience for just $70/year.

And that’s not all!

I’ll discuss all the details in this guide, including more NordVPN features, several alternatives (like PIA and PrivateVPN), and the best tips for playing PokerStars with a VPN.

Stay tuned!

There’s a long list of countries where PokerStars is banned, including most US states!

But bypassing a ban isn’t the only reason you should use a VPN to play PokerStars.

A VPN will keep your data and money secure at all times, whether you’re depositing, betting, or cashing out.

It’ll also protect you from DDoS attacks and other online threats.

But you can’t just choose any VPN!

There are several necessary features to look for first, including a verified no-logging policy, kill switch, dedicated IP add-on, and 256-bit AES encryption.

Don’t worry, though!

I’ll help you through the entire process. 

Let’s get started. 

Chasing That Royal Flush? Here’s a Shortcut (My Top 5 VPNs for PokerStars)!

If you’re too busy chasing that royal flush to read my entire guide right now, here’s a shortcut featuring my top five picks

  • NordVPN – Best VPN Overall for PokerStars + Dedicated IP
  • Private Internet Access – 35,000+ Servers & Dedicated IP Add-On
  • PrivateVPN – Public Dynamic Dedicated IPs & Two Kill Switches
  • Surfshark – Fast & Affordable With Static IPs + Verified No-Logs Policy
  • ExpressVPN – Fastest VPN for PokerStars + Automatic Obfuscation

But after you win big, come back and read the rest!

There’s a lot of important information you don’t want to miss (including must-know tips for playing PokerStars with a VPN).

nord logo
NordVPN devices

NordVPN

Best Choice

NordVPN is the best VPN for PokerStars, thanks to its suite of essential features. First, you can opt for the dedicated IP add-on, ensuring your poker experience is secure, private, and unlikely to be flagged by any anti-VPN algorithm. But if you don’t have the extra cash, NordVPN’s standard package includes 256-bit AES encryption, two kill switches, and DDoS protection. Plus, you’ll get blazing-fast speeds and a verified no-logging policy!

The Best VPNs for PokerStars: In-Depth Mini-Reviews

pokerstars cash games

Are you ready to get down to business (AKA: endless games of Tempest)?

Don’t forget to fire up a trustworthy VPN first!

This section will help you pick the best one for PokerStars based on your unique needs.

Ready, set, play!

1. NordVPN – Best VPN Overall for PokerStars (Dedicated IP Add-On)

NordVPN starts my list of the most trustworthy VPNs for PokerStars – and rightfully so!

To begin, this provider offers my top recommended feature for playing poker with a VPN: a dedicated IP add-on.

While not absolutely essential, a dedicated IP add-on is useful in avoiding VPN detection, as you’ll have your own private (and static) VPN server to connect to.

You can also choose from several locations, three of which are countries where PokerStars isn’t restricted (the UK, France, and Germany).

The only downside is that NordVPN’s dedicated IP add-on is a bit expensive, ranging from $70-74.20 per year ($5.83-$6.18/month), depending on your location.

nordvpn 1 year plan with dedicated ip

For perspective, most VPNs with dedicated IP add-ons (like PIA, discussed next) only charge $5/month and don’t require a yearly commitment.

That said, NordVPN places first for a reason, so committing to its dedicated IP add-on for a year is more than worth it (as is the extra cost).

Why?

Because NordVPN also includes a premium suite of features in its standard package!

For example, you’ll get all the must-have security features to ensure your time spent playing 6+ Hold’em is safe and secure.

This includes two kill switches, meaning if your NordVPN connection drops, one kill switch will kill your connection while the other kills the PokerStars app.

nordvpn app kill switch pokerstars

And for what it’s worth, there’s only one other VPN on my list that offers an app kill switch (PrivateVPN)!

You’ll also get 256-bit AES encryption that will keep your data and money safe during deposits, bets, and withdrawals.

And NordVPN’s verified no-logging policy ensures your PokerStars activities are safe, even if a third party requests your logs!

But it doesn’t end there.

If you’re in a country where PokerStars is banned or restricted, you’ll appreciate NordVPN’s server options.

This includes many European countries where the poker platform isn’t blocked, such as the UK, Germany, Poland, France, and Slovakia.

playing pokerstars with nordvpn

NordVPN also has servers in New Jersey – one of the three US states where PokerStars isn’t prohibited (the other two being Michigan and Pennsylvania).

However, the provider puts their NJ servers with their NY servers.

So, to connect to an NJ server, type one of the following numbers into the NordVPN app search bar:

nordvpn new jersey servers

Here’s an example:

nordvpn us nj server

This is a little confusing, especially as most VPNs with New Jersey servers have them in their own state category (though PIA is another provider that doesn’t).

But, on the bright side, the provider also offers super-fast speeds (the second-fastest on my list with ExpressVPN placing first), apps for all PokerStars devices (Windows, macOS, iOS, and Android), DDoS protection, and affordable long-term plans.

Take a look:

OR, if you want to spend LESS money here and MORE money playing poker, grab this EXCLUSIVE NordVPN discount!

Pros

Cons

2. Private Internet Access – 35,000+ Servers & Dedicated IP Add-On

Private Internet Access website

Next up (and neck-to-neck with NordVPN) is Private Internet Access (PIA).

This VPN provider also offers a dedicated IP add-on – and it’s a monthly charge (vs. NordVPN’s yearly, though you can also choose 1- or 3-year charges) and only costs $5 (vs. NordVPN’s $5.83-$6.18).

You can also get discounts on longer plans!

private internet access 3 years plan with dedicated ip

It also has location options where PokerStars is accessible, including Germany, the UK, and a US East location.

private internet access dedicated ip locations

So, if you’re hoping for an affordable static, unshared IP to make your PokerStars experience a seamless one, PIA is the VPN for you.

Of course, there’s much more worth mentioning.

To start, PIA has the biggest server network on my list, with over 35,000+ servers.

This includes options in many countries where PokerStars is unrestricted, such as Germany, Poland, Slovakia, France, Austria, and Belgium.

playing pokerstars with private internet access vpn

You can also play PokerStars with PIA’s New Jersey servers.

However, these are even harder to connect to than NordVPN’s, as you have to use the “US East” location, and there’s no way to tell what state you’re connecting to.

private internet access vpn us east server

This means it’s a process of connecting, disconnecting, and repeating until your IP address shows as in New Jersey.

This is also why I don’t recommend purchasing a US East dedicated IP add-on unless PIA’s support confirms the server is in New Jersey specifically.

But, luckily, there’s more good news.

PIA also includes must-have security features in its standard package.

You’ll get a kill switch (though no app kill switch), DDoS protection, and 256-bit AES encryption, ensuring every step of your PokerStars journey is secure and protected.

private internet access vpn kill switch

PIA also operates a no-logs policy, so even if the authorities demand your logs (and PokerStars activities) from the VPN provider, they’ll have nothing to turn over.

And you can use the PIA app with all PokerStars platforms (Windows, macOS, iOS, and Android). 

Better yet, despite placing fourth during my tests, PIA still impressed me with super-fast speeds!

It placed above PrivateVPN and only fell shortly behind Surfshark, meaning your game of Tempest Hold’em won’t be a laggy nightmare.

Finally, as a bonus, PIA has pretty affordable plans:

But for an EVEN BETTER DEAL, click here!

Pros

Cons

3. PrivateVPN – Public Dynamic Dedicated IPs & Two Kill Switches

privatevpn site

Third on my list of the most reliable VPNs for PokerStars is PrivateVPN – a somewhat unique entry, as it’s the only VPN on my list to offer public dynamic, dedicated IPs in its standard package (AKA: free!!!).

privatevpn dedicated ip servers

They’re not as effective as static dedicated IPs (that never change).

However, PrivateVPN’s public dynamic dedicated IPs are still nice for players who want a free dedicated IP that isn’t shared with other users.

So, to clarify, you’ll get an unshared, unique dedicated IP every time you connect to a dedicated IP server (but never the same dedicated IP).

There are also many dedicated IP locations, including options in countries where PokerStars isn’t restricted – for example, France, Brazil, Canada, the UK, Italy, and Germany.

playing pokerstars with privatevpn

Beyond that, PrivateVPN is the only VPN on my list besides NordVPN to offer two kill switches.

The first switch stops your internet traffic if PrivateVPN disconnects and the second (“Application Guard”) terminates the PokerStars app.

privatevpn connection guard

PrivateVPN also has other must-have security features, such as 256-bit AES encryption, ensuring the money you win playing Tempest Hold’em stays secure at all times (including during withdrawal).

You’ll also get a strict no-logs policy to keep your data safe and apps for all PokerStars platforms (Windows, macOS, iOS, and Android).

But there is a downside.

PrivateVPN doesn’t offer DDoS protection, so there’s no guarantee you’re safe from angry players launching DDoS attacks.

In better news, PrivateVPN has many shared dynamic servers for players in countries or states where PokerStars is restricted.

For example, you’ll find servers in Germany, the UK, France, and Canada!

However, what makes PrivateVPN stand out from my top two picks is that its New Jersey servers are easy to find and connect to.

They have their own state category!

privatevpn new jersey dedicated server

But there is a downside: PrivateVPN placed last during my speed tests.

You’ll still have a relatively lag-free experience (enough to win at Spin & Go and other games) but this might be a problem, depending on your location.

Still, PrivateVPN is deserving of its spot!

Read Also: How to Get a Free Trial of PrivateVPN?

Especially because it has the most affordable monthly plan on my list.

Take a look:

privatevpn pricing

But if you opt for a long-term plan and want to save some cash, click here!

Pros

Cons

4. Surfshark – Fast & Affordable With Static IPs + Verified No-Logs Policy

surfshark site

Surfshark is yet another unique entry to my list of the top VPNs for PokerStars, thanks to its static IP servers (included for free with its standard plan).

No other VPN on my list offers free static IP servers!

surfshark vpn static ip servers

However, these servers are static and shared.

This means, while you can connect to the same static server whenever you want, you’re also sharing that server with anyone else connected to it.

It’s a toss-up whether static shared servers are better than private dynamic servers for playing PokerStars.

However, either option is nice when static dedicated IPs aren’t an option, as they at least combat VPN detection measures better than shared dynamic servers.

Surfshark’s static servers are also available in several countries, including ones where PokerStars is accessible (Germany, the UK, and Japan).

You’ll also find many dynamic servers – for example, in France, Italy, the UK, Poland, and Slovakia.

playing pokerstars with surfshark vpn

Furthermore, Surfshark is the only VPN on my list to offer servers in Michigan!

So, while you won’t find any New Jersey or Pennsylvania servers, you can still play PokerStars in the US by connecting to Surfshark’s Detroit server.

Surfshark also comes with all the necessary security features to ensure your PokerStars experience is safe 24/7 – whether you’re depositing, betting, or withdrawing!

This includes a kill switch (but no app kill switch), 256-bit AES encryption, and DDoS protection.

You’ll also enjoy Surfshark’s verified no-logging policy that guarantees no third-party will ever see your PokerStars activities (and all the money you’ve won)!

Better yet, Surfshark’s speeds are super-fast!

The provider placed third during my speed tests, falling shortly behind NordVPN.

This means your chase for the royal flush will be lag-free.

Plus, you’ll find dedicated apps for all of PokerStars’ platforms: Windows, macOS, iOS, and Android.

And, finally, Surfshark offers great savings on its long-term plans:

But for EVEN MORE SAVINGS, check out my exclusive discount link!

Pros

Cons

5. ExpressVPN – Fastest VPN for PokerStars + Automatic Obfuscation

expressvpn site

I wanted to put ExpressVPN higher.

There are two primary reasons I didn’t.

First, the provider doesn’t offer dedicated or static server options – no add-on, no free limited option, nothing.

However, this isn’t a huge deal-breaker, as I never struggled to access PokerStars when testing ExpressVPN with the poker app.

This is likely because ExpressVPN is one of the best VPNs for unblocking geo-locked content.

playing pokerstars with expressvpn

Still, on the off chance you run into VPN blocks, there’s no option to switch to a dedicated or static server to fix the issue.

And considering all the other VPNs on my list offer something, that’s pretty disappointing.

The second reason is that ExpressVPN doesn’t offer an app kill switch.

So, if the standard kill switch fails (for example, if your PC is in sleep mode), your real IP will leak to the PokerStars app.

The good news is, ExpressVPN’s kill switch has never failed for me.

expressvpn network lock

And, in better news, ExpressVPN is the only VPN on my list to offer automatically obfuscated servers with any protocol.

This helps the provider beat VPN blocks, so you’ll always have reliable access to the PokerStars app.

ExpressVPN is also the fastest VPN on my list, so your game of No Limit Omaha is sure to be lag-free every time!

Beyond that, ExpressVPN provides must-have security features (in addition to its kill switch), such as 256-bit AES encryption and DDoS protection.

Plus, there’s its verified no-logging policy that will protect your data no matter who requests it!

And as for ExpressVPN’s servers…well, there are plenty of options in countries where PokerStars is accessible.

This includes Germany, the UK, Austria, Slovakia, Poland, France, Italy, and three New Jersey servers that are easy to locate in the app!

And speaking of the app, ExpressVPN offers apps for all PokerStars platforms (Windows, macOS, iOS, and Android).

But there is one last downside.

ExpressVPN is the most expensive provider on my list:

Luckily, you can get a MAJOR DISCOUNT by using my sign-up link.

Pros

Cons

How to Pick the Best VPN for PokerStars?

If you prefer doing your own research and choosing your own VPN for PokerStars, that’s fine!

Just make sure you review this section first to know exactly what to look for (and what to avoid)!

Ready to “Spin & Go?” Check My Checklist First!

pokerstars kick off

Before you commit to a VPN for PokerStars, review this essential checklist so that you know what to look for!

Unblocks PokerStars

Don’t roll your eyes – it’s not as clear-cut as it seems!

In fact, many VPNs promise to unblock services that they can’t actually unblock.

Or, sometimes, they’ll unblock a service temporarily, getting your hopes up, only to get blocked days later.

You need a VPN that reliably unblocks PokerStars all of the time.

The best way to test this (beyond taking the provider’s word) is to utilize a money-back guarantee.

You won’t find a trustworthy VPN that doesn’t offer one.

So, buy a subscription, test it for a couple of weeks with PokerStars, and if you’re unimpressed, ask for a refund.

Just make sure you do so before the money-back guarantee expires!

For reference, most are valid for 30 days.

PS: it’s a bonus if the VPN also unblocks your other favorite poker sites!

Dedicated/Static IP Options

Another thing to look out for is a dedicated IP add-on.

This is the most reliable way to play PokerStars without flagging the platform for violating ToS (by playing from a restricted country) or constantly fighting VPN blocks.

Most dedicated IP add-ons fall between $5 and $6 with discounts on long-term plans.

For example, PIA’s base add-on is $5 per month.

But if you opt for a year, you’ll get 15% off.

And for three years?

25% off!

[Skip the hassle and get a reliable VPN for PokerStars with an affordable dedicated IP add-on by clicking here!]

But if your VPN doesn’t offer a dedicated IP add-on, it should at least offer something similar, like PrivateVPN’s public dynamic dedicated IPs or Surfshark’s shared static IPs.

Of course, there are always exceptions (like ExpressVPN with its obfuscated servers) – but you’re better on the safe side if you can help it!

Servers In Countries Where PokerStars Isn’t Restricted

Make sure your VPN has servers in countries where PokerStars isn’t restricted!

Examples include the UK, Canada, Germany, France, Italy, Slovakia, Poland, and Japan.

Additionally, PokerStars is only accessible in three US statesNew Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Michigan.

All of the VPNs on my list offer servers in countries where PokerStars isn’t restricted, including at least one server in an unrestricted US state (with varying degrees of accessibility).

Also, don’t forget to check your dedicated IP’s available locations!

If you end up with a dedicated IP in a country where PokerStars is blocked, you’ll have wasted precious poker money.

Must-Have Security Features

Your VPN should have all the must-have security features, including a kill switch, 256-bit AES encryption, and DDoS protection.

These will stop your IP from leaking if your VPN loses connection, keep your money and data safe, and protect you from DDoS attacks.

A second, app-based kill switch is a huge bonus, especially as PokerStars is played via the Windows, macOS, iOS, or Android app.

Other security features to look for include obfuscation, a double VPN, and RAM-only servers.

No-Logging Policy

A no-logs policy is an absolute necessity.

Otherwise, your PokerStars activities are at risk of being discovered, should a third party request access to your VPN’s logs.

Furthermore, make sure your VPN goes the extra mile by having their no-logs policy audited.

Fast Speeds

You can’t enjoy your favorite PokerStars game if it’s lagging!

Again, a good way to test your VPN’s speeds is by utilizing its money-back guarantee.

Buy a subscription, do some speed tests (on relevant servers), and ask for a refund if you’re unsatisfied with your results.

Fair Pricing

Finally, ensure you’re getting the best deal for your VPN.

Compare different plans and features and check for discounts and coupon codes before clicking “Complete transaction!”

Alternatively, use my EXCLUSIVE discount link right now for HUGE savings on my top VPN for PokerStars, NordVPN!

Can You Use a Free VPN for PokerStars?

I don’t recommend using a free VPN to play PokerStars, as you’re putting your account, data, and winnings at risk if the platform detects your VPN use.

This is because most free VPNs are unreliable at unblocking content – and that’s the best-case scenario.

Middle case, the VPN provider is selling your data to third parties.

And worst case?

It’s filling your device with malware.

Instead, I recommend taking advantage of my stellar discount on NordVPN.

Grab it NOW, before it’s too late!

Does PokerStars Allow VPNs?

PokerStars doesn’t outright ban VPNs.

However, its VPN policy states, “We ask that you connect to our services without using a proxy or a VPN connection.”

They claim VPNs can cause platform bugs, saying VPNs “can prevent access to all or some of the options within our software.”

That said, I never noticed any bugs when testing VPNs with the PokerStars app.

However, when it comes to using a VPN to access PokerStars in countries where it’s banned or restricted, the company states anyone who does so will “lose their privileges and/or funds in their account.”

In other words, if you’re in a restricted country, you risk losing everything if you’re caught using a VPN.

But what are the restricted countries?

Where Is PokerStars Blocked?

According to the PokerStars website, the platform is blocked or restricted in 120+ countries.

These are separated into four categories:

  • Countries blocked from real money activity
  • Countries blocked from real money, freemium, and play money activity
  • Countries blocked from real money and freemium activity
  • Countries blocked from freemium activity

Some prominent examples of countries blocked from real money, freemium, and play money activities include:

  • Cuba
  • Dominica
  • Haiti
  • Hong Kong
  • Israel
  • Kuwait
  • Netherlands
  • Qatar
  • Singapore
  • South Africa
  • US Minor Outlying Islands
  • US Virgin Islands

I couldn’t find the official page on the PokerStars website (it redirects to the main site).

However, I did find a copy of it on the WayBackMachine from October 8, 2021.

Click here for the full list.

Can PokerStars Detect VPNs?

playing pokerstars with nordvpn

If you’re using an untrustworthy VPN, there are several ways PokerStars might detect it.

For example, they might know the IP address belongs to your VPN provider.

Or there might be too many users connecting to the same server.

Or your account might be flagged for switching IPs too many times.

Luckily, there are reliable ways to avoid this.

Let’s discuss that next.

Tips for Playing PokerStars With a VPN

If you want to avoid a ban while playing PokerStars with a VPN from a restricted country, follow these tips as much as possible:

  • Use a reliable VPN. Your VPN provider should be well-known, trustworthy, and reliable. It should also consistently unblock PokerStars. To know what to look for in a reliable VPN, see my above section, “How to Pick the Best VPN for PokerStars?”
  • If possible, use a dedicated IP. A dedicated IP will eliminate two primary reasons PokerStars might know you’re using a VPN. First, it will stop your account from being flagged for switching locations too many times. Second, it will stop the VPN IP from being flagged due to too many users connecting to it.
  • If a dedicated IP isn’t available, use a similar feature. For example, some VPNs offer static shared servers or private dynamic servers, which is better than nothing. If there isn’t a similar feature, settle for nothing less than an obfuscation feature.
  • Don’t go crazy with your deposits. Deposit small amounts at all times so that if your account is banned, you don’t lose all your hard-earned money.
  • Withdraw your winnings regularly. For the same reason as the tip above, withdraw your winnings regularly to avoid losing them should your account get banned.
  • Ensure your VPN blocks or supports IPv6 connections. If your ISP supplies you with an IPv6 address in addition to IPv4, you need a VPN that blocks that IPv6 connection, or you risk an IPv6 leak (AKA: your real location).
  • Enable your kill switch(es). Before you fire up the PokerStars app, ensure your VPN’s kill switch is enabled. If there are two kill switches (network and app), make sure the app kill switch is also enabled and has the PokerStars app added to it.
  • Understand that there’s always a risk. While the above tips are very likely to keep you and your winnings safe, there’s no way to 100% negate a possible ban when using a VPN to play PokerStars from a restricted country. Understand the risk.

How to Play PokerStars With a VPN?

All right, so you understand the risk, and you’re ready to get started.

To play PokerStars with a VPN, follow these easy steps:

  1. Choose one of my recommended VPNs (or a VPN you found after thorough research) and purchase a subscription. Don’t forget to grab the dedicated IP add-on if there’s one available!
nordvpn 1 year plan with dedicated ip
  1. Download and install the VPN app on your PokerStars device(s).
  2. Open the VPN app and sign in to your account.
  3. Open the Settings tab and enable the kill switch(es) and any other security features (like obfuscation).
nordvpn app kill switch pokerstars
  1. Connect to your dedicated IP (or static shared IP/private dynamic IP). Make sure the server is in a country where PokerStars isn’t restricted!
  2. Open your browser and check for IP, DNS, and WebRTC leaks.
  3. Open the PokerStars app and enjoy!
playing pokerstars with nordvpn

FAQ

Will a VPN Protect Me From DDoS Attacks On PokerStars?

Yes, if your VPN offers DDoS protection, it will protect you from DDoS attacks launched by unhappy players whose money you won.

It will also protect your IP from being used as part of a botnet in a DDoS attack against another player.

Is It Safe to Use a VPN to Play PokerStars?

Yes, it’s safe to use a VPN to play PokerStars, though the platform warns that a VPN can cause bugs in the app.

That said, this is rarely an issue.

However, if you’re using a VPN to access PokerStars from a restricted country, you need to understand the risks in doing so (like losing your account and money if your VPN is detected).

The best way to negate this is to use a reliable VPN with a kill switch and dedicated IP add-on.

Can I Use a VPN to Play PokerStars in Australia?

Despite PokerStars not offering Australian players support, you can still play PokerStars in Australia using a reliable VPN.

I recommend NordVPN, as it offers two kill switches (network and app), DDoS protection, and a dedicated IP add-on.

If you enable all of these features and connect to a server in a country where PokerStars isn’t restricted, you’re unlikely to be caught.

Will ExpressVPN Work With PokerStars?

ExpressVPN works with PokerStars.

However, it should be a last resort for playing on the poker app, as it doesn’t offer an app kill switch or any dedicated IP option.

Still, its automatically obfuscated servers should prevent PokerStars from detecting your VPN use should you decide to stick with the VPN provider.

Conclusion

You’re officially ready to hop on PokerStars and chase that royal flush!

Just don’t forget to turn your VPN on first.

Once again, my top choice is NordVPN.

With its premium security features and dedicated IP add-on, you can’t go wrong.

Ready to take the plunge?

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