Final Fantasy XIV may have seen a resurgence in popularity recently, but the game is still haunted by lag. Here we’ll show you the best VPNs for reducing lag and protecting your privacy online.
For some reason, several major ISPs seem to have particularly poor routing for FFXIV, which can make it hard to actually play without stuttering, rubberbanding, or disconnecting. However, many users report that these problems disappear when connected to a VPN. So why is this? Simply, your VPN sends data via a different route to the game’s servers—this might be less congested than your ISP’s route, or perhaps just more direct, which can lead to a reduction in latency. What’s more, your data will be encrypted too, meaning that everything you do online is shielding from anyone who might be monitoring the network.
Take a look below for a quick guide to the best VPNs for FFXIV. If any stand out to you, just scroll down for a more detailed review.
Best VPNs for Final Fantasy 14:
- NordVPN: Our top VPN for Final Fantasy XIV. Great for gaming thanks to its large network, powerful security features, and top-tier speeds. Includes a 30-day money-back guarantee so you can try it completely risk-free.
- Surfshark: The best low-cost VPN for playing FFXIV. Boasts exceptionally fast speeds, plus an impressive array of security and privacy tools. Secure all of your devices at the same time.
- ExpressVPN: A speedy VPN with its own router firmware that makes it ideal for playing FFXIV on consoles. Has a strong security focus, a no-logs policy, and a network spanning 94 countries.
- CyberGhost: This beginner-friendly VPN has specially-configured servers for gaming safely. Also offers 24/7 support, a solid security offering, and one of the largest networks on the market.
- IPVanish: A zero-logs VPN with steady speeds and no connection limit. Works well with Final Fantasy XIV as well as streaming platforms like Netflix.
- PrivateVPN: This privacy-first VPN makes it easy to play FFXIV safely. Has fast and reliable servers, lots of security tools, and a true no-logs policy.
- Hotspot Shield: With gaming-optimized servers, user-friendly apps, and great overall performance, Hotspot Shield takes the hassle out of playing online games securely.
WANT TO TRY THE TOP VPN RISK FREE?
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There are no hidden terms—just contact support within 30 days if you decide NordVPN isn't right for you and you'll get a full refund. Start your NordVPN trial here.
There are a few important things to consider when shopping for a gaming VPN. For instance, how much of an impact does it have on your speeds? How secure will your data be? Are there even servers in countries close to you? We considered all of these factors and more before creating a list of characteristics that all of the best VPNs for Final Fantasy XIV must have (more on these later):
- Servers in numerous countries around the world
- High enough speeds for uninterrupted gaming
- Powerful security tools including effectively uncrackable encryption
- A no-logging policy to keep your activities private at all times
- Apps for Windows and MacOS, plus router support so console players aren’t left out
Best VPNs for playing FFXIV
Below, we’ll take a closer look at each of the best VPNs for Final Fantasy 14:
Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS
NordVPN is our top pick for Final Fantasy XIV. It offers access to 5,000+ servers in more than 60 countries, and consistently places near the top of our VPN speed test rankings. It’s not just good for gaming, either; this service can reliably unblock popular platforms like Hulu, Sling TV, and Disney+ from abroad. There are no bandwidth limits whatsoever and users can connect up to six devices at the same time.
This provider has one of the strongest security toolkits around. It boasts its own NordLynx protocol, a customizable kill switch, 256-bit encryption, and leak protection, plus it recently switches to RAM servers to ensure no data is stored locally. NordVPN follows a no-logs policy and has twice verified this with an independent auditor. Customer support is available 24/7 over email and live chat, so it’s quick and easy to get help with any problems.
NordVPN has its own Android, Windows, iOS, MacOS, and Linux apps. Additionally, it can be manually installed on a wide range of wireless routers, which lets you protect every device on your home network simultaneously.
- Speedy provider with a vast network
- Works well with FFXIV and similar games
- Takes user security very seriously
- Keeps no logs whatsoever
- 24/7 live chat support on offer
- Takes two clicks to disconnect
BEST VPN FOR FFXIV:NordVPN is our top choice. Not only does it boast some of the highest speeds around, but it leads the industry on security. Great for gaming, streaming, and torrenting. This service even offers a 30-day money-back guarantee so you can try it risk-free.
Still have questions? Feel free to read our in-depth NordVPN review.
Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS
Surfshark is the best budget VPN for playing FF14. What’s surprising about this service is that, despite its low price, it challenges industry veterans on all fronts. For instance, few other VPNs come close to its speed (we averaged 207 Mbps in the latest tests) and it works with just about every streaming service we’ve tried including Netflix, HBO Max, and Amazon Prime Video. Best of all, users are free to connect all of their devices simultaneously.
Surfshark provides its own apps for MacOS, iOS, Windows, Android, and Linux systems. Select routers are supported too, but you’ll have to follow manual setup instructions for these.
- Leads the pack on speed
- Perfect for lag-free gaming
- Extremely strong security offering
- Zero-logs provider
- Secure all of your devices at once
- Menus could be better organized
BEST BUDGET VPN:Surfshark is the best low-cost option for FF14. It’s extremely security-conscious, reliable, and user-friendly, plus it boasts some of the highest speeds we’ve seen. Still not sure? Why not take advantage of its 30-day money-back guarantee?
Read the full Surfshark review.
Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS
ExpressVPN has more than 3,000 servers spread across 94 countries, so there should be one fairly close to you, wherever you are in the world. Not only that, but thanks to the introduction of the Lightway protocol, this service is faster than ever, averaging 135 Mbps on our 1 Gbps connection. As such, this service is ideal for delivering seamless, smooth gameplay and can be counted on not to drop out at a crucial moment. There is a five-connection maximum, however.
When it comes to security, this VPN has everything you’ll need. There’s 256-bit AES encryption, for instance, plus a kill switch and protection against DNS and IPv6 leaks. ExpressVPN doesn’t keep any personally identifiable logs but you could always pay in Bitcoin if you’d like to enhance your privacy even further. This service offers free 24/7 support via email and live chat.
ExpressVPN comes with its own newly-improved router firmware, which makes securing your whole home network as easy as possible. There are also dedicated iOS, Android, MacOS, Windows, and Linux apps to protect your devices while on-the-go.
- Fast and versatile
- Great for gaming and streaming
- Great set of security features
- Very easy to install on a router
- On the higher end of the pricing spectrum
PERFECT FOR CONSOLES:ExpressVPN is easy to install on routers, allowing you to securely play FF14 on PlayStation as well as PC. Not only that, but it’s very fast and packed with powerful security tools. All plans include a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Why not check out our comprehensive ExpressVPN review?
Money-back guarantee: 45 DAYS
CyberGhost has a network of around 7,000 servers in 90+ countries, which means you can count on it for a reliable, high-speed connection, even at peak times. Better still, there are servers specifically optimized for gaming, which removes all trial and error from the equation, and lets you get started as quickly as possible. Users can protect up to seven devices simultaneously and play as much as they like since there are no bandwidth limits.
This VPN’s security tools are all enabled by default, so there’s no need to mess around in the settings if you don’t want to. These include an always-on kill switch, DNS and IPv6 leak protection, 256-bit encryption, automatic tracker-blocking, and a no-logs policy. CyberGhost recently launched its own password manager and security checkup software too. Although this is a very user-friendly service, you can reach support at any time over email and live chat.
CyberGhost has its own Windows, MacOS, Linux, Android, and iOS apps. If you’d prefer, you can manually install it on DD-WRT and Tomato routers for full network coverage.
- Huge network with gaming-optimized servers
- Low-cost option with beginner-friendly apps
- Great set of security tools
- Offers around the clock support
- May not be customizable enough for advanced users
GAMING SERVERS:CyberGhost offers access to specially-optimized gaming servers, making it ideal for MMORPGs like FF14 and World of Warcraft. With high speeds, strong security, and a 45-day money-back guarantee, this novice-friendly service certainly has plenty to offer.
To find out more, read our full review of CyberGhost.
Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS
IPVanish is a versatile, lightweight VPN that works well with FFXIV, Overwatch, Dota 2, and more. It has over 1,900 servers in 75 locations worldwide, and recently upgraded its network to provide higher speeds than ever before. As such, this service is a solid choice whether you’re looking to play games, torrent anonymously, or access your usual streaming platforms abroad. It’s also one of just two VPNs in this list that lets you protect an unlimited number of devices.
This provider doesn’t skimp on security, either. Its apps come with 256-bit encryption, a kill switch, WireGuard support, and the ability to block access to other devices on the network. Crucially, IPVanish is a zero-logs provider, which means it can’t share details of your activities with anyone. If you run into any issues, you can reach support staff using the 24/7 live chat service.
IPVanish provides lightweight apps for MacOS, iOS, Windows, and Android systems. It also works with Linux and some wireless routers, although manual installation is required.
- Supports several popular games including FF14
- Impressive security offering
- Has no connection or bandwidth limits
- Doesn’t accept Bitcoin
FAST AND SECURE:IPVanish is an affordable VPN with real everyday usage potential. Pays close attention to your security and works with just about any service you might care to try. What’s more, this service offers a 30-day money-back guarantee on its long-term plans.
Read our in-depth review of IPVanish.
Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS
PrivateVPN may only have around 200 servers in 60+ countries, but what it lacks in scale, it makes up for in speed. In our most recent testing, this provider averaged 71 Mbps, which is not only fast enough for online gaming, it’s enough to stream 4K video on several devices simultaneously. This VPN works with major platforms like Netflix, Peacock, and BBC iPlayer, plus it offers unlimited bandwidth. Six devices can be connected at any one time.
As you might expect, this service prioritizes privacy. PrivateVPN has a strict zero-logs policy and has full control of your data every step of the way since it now acts as its own ISP and hosting provider. There’s also 256-bit encryption (with the option to switch to 128-bit for higher speeds), an app-specific kill switch, a stealth mode, and protection against DNS, IPv6, and WebRTC leaks. Live chat-based support is on-hand most (but not all) hours of the day.
PrivateVPN apps are available for Linux, MacOS, Windows, Android, and iOS. Users can also follow the service’s manual setup guide to get it running on supported routers and Linux distros.
- High speeds, reliable performance
- Impeccable privacy credentials
- One of the best on security
- Small selection of servers
- Would prefer 24/7 support
PRIVACY FIRST:PrivateVPN keeps no logs and never lets any third party company access your data. This, along with its high speeds and strong security toolkit, makes it perfect for any privacy-conscious gamer. Subscribers can take advantage of a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Interested? Take a look at our complete PrivateVPN review.
Money-back guarantee: 45 DAYS
Editor’s Note: Hotspot Shield is owned by Pango, Comparitech’s parent company.
Hotspot Shield is perfect for anyone looking for a VPN that just works. It has around 1,800 servers in 80+ countries, but if you’d rather, you can just connect to its gaming-optimized servers for the best-possible experience. This provider has no issues securely accessing platforms like Netflix, BBC iPlayer, or Dota 2 abroad, either, and permits up to five simultaneous connections.
While its security features include 256-bit encryption, DNS and IPv6 leak protection, a kill switch, and a proprietary connection protocol (Catapult Hydra), this provider isn’t content to rest on its laurels. Recent updates have introduced IKEv2 support, automatic wi-fi protection, and split tunneling functionality. Further, Hotspot Shield doesn’t log any data that could identify you. Support is only ever a few seconds away thanks to this provider’s around-the-clock live chat service.
Hotspot Shield offers apps for Windows, Android, MacOS, iOS, and Linux. Some routers are supported too, but you’ll have to configure the VPN manually.
- Specific servers for gaming and streaming
- Strong commitment to security
- Very easy to use
- Had past privacy issues
- No anonymous payment options
STRESS-FREE GAMING:Hotspot Shield removes all guesswork by offering special gaming servers. Further, it’s fast and security-conscious, with its own protocol even able to bypass China’s internet restrictions. This VPN includes a generous 45-day money-back guarantee.
Why not check out our full Hotspot Shield review?
How to play FF14 securely with a VPN
Some games try to block VPNs outright, but as long as you’re not trying to register or buy things on the Mog Station, Final Fantasy 14 doesn’t seem to mind whether you’re connected or not.
Here’s how to use a VPN with FFXIV:
- Sign up for one of the VPNs above (we recommend NordVPN).
- Install the VPN app on your PC. Note that if you’re playing on consoles, you’ll have to manually install the VPN on your router instead.
- Once connected, your traffic is encrypted and you should be able to play as normal. There may even be a bit less lag, although this depends on your ISP, your chosen server, and how busy the game server is.
- Having problems? It’s worth noting that Mog Station won’t let you purchase anything (including game time) if it detects you’re using a VPN. If you’re unable to sign up, just disconnect, finish the registration process, and reconnect before logging into the game.
Methodology: How we chose the best VPNs for FFXIV
If you’re looking to game while connected to a VPN, you’ll primarily be looking for a service that can deliver impressive speeds. However, to protect yourself from threats like SWATTING or DDoS attacks, you’ll also need a service with a decent-sized network and strong security tools. Here are a few of the areas we looked at when choosing the best VPNs for Final Fantasy 14, and what we expect in each:
- Speed: Whether you’re gearing up for Endwalker raids or simply trying to optimize your crafting flow, you’ll need a speedy VPN. We regularly test providers to see how fast they are, and only recommend those that consistently deliver high speeds
- Server selection: We prioritize VPNs with large networks, since these make it easier to find a nearby server (which theoretically provides the fastest, most reliable connection). This also gives you the option to access services from a wider number of countries.
- Security and privacy: The services above all include uncrackable encryption, protection against DNS and IPv6 leaks, a kill switch, and a no-logs policy. Of course, we prefer VPNs that go even further, for instance with a stealth mode or its own protocol
- Pricing: We regularly compare the prices of major VPNs and can tell if a service is overcharging for the features it offers. Only fairly-priced services make our list, and we’ll let you know about any guarantees, discounts, or trials that are available
- Ease of use: Nobody wants to spend their time messing around in a settings menu instead of playing their favorite game. All of our recommended VPNs are simple and straightforward to use, with live chat-based customer support
This is just one small part of our larger overall testing process. If you’d like to find out more, we have a full post dedicated to explaining how we test VPNs.
Can I play Final Fantasy XIV with a free VPN?
We generally don’t recommend using free VPNs because they have several problems that their paid rivals don’t. For instance, you’ll usually only have access to a handful of servers, will likely only be able to use the VPN for a short time each month, and may find that your chosen server has been blacklisted entirely. In other words, assuming you’re even able to access FF14, you probably won’t have the best experience.
FFXIV VPNs: Frequently Asked Questions
Will I get banned for playing FF14 with a VPN?
Square Enix does not ban players simply for using VPNs. In fact, there’s nothing in the user agreement or prohibited actions list that even remotely indicates that this is a possibility. If your account is banned, it’s almost certain that your in-game actions were the cause.
Why might I need a VPN to play Final Fantasy 14?
Fans have long complained about lag ruining their experience with Final Fantasy XIV, which isn’t great if you’re trying to complete a precision-intensive raid like E8S or A4S. However, many of them report that the problems go away when connected to a VPN.
The reason for this isn’t always clear, but we can certainly speculate. It’s possible that the user’s Internet Service Provider was throttling their connection speeds or perhaps routing their data in an inefficient manner, whereas the VPN provider was not.
VPNs also hide your true IP address and location, which offers an additional layer of privacy from anyone else on your chosen server. As an added bonus, because these services bypass local internet restrictions, you should be able to play just about anywhere, whether it’s at college, work, or even a country where the game isn’t normally available.
Can I switch FF14 home worlds with a VPN?
Some games automatically match you with other players who live in nearby countries, while others allow you to freely switch between matchmaking regions using a server selection menu. A VPN can help change who you play with in the first example, but unfortunately, Final Fantasy 14 works quite differently.
When you’re creating your account, you’ll be asked to choose a home world for your character. This not only determines which players you’ll run into, it also determines which of the game’s servers you’ll use to connect. For instance, the Louisoix world exclusively relies on the game’s European servers. Unfortunately, once you’ve chosen your server, there’s no way to switch it unless you’re transferring a character to a newly-created world (which happens very rarely) or are willing to pay the $18 (GBP £13.03) world transfer fee.