Fortnite is the hottest free-to-play game right now, but unfortunately, it’s blocked in some schools, colleges, and workplaces. Today, we’ll explain how you can use a Virtual Private Network (VPN) to bypass this restriction and play Fortnite no matter where you are. Have you received a Fortnite VPN ban or proxy error? No problem — we’ll also be showing you how a VPN can change your IP address, beat IP bans, and allow you to play again.
We get into plenty of detail on each of the providers we feature, but in case you are short of time, you’ll find a quick summary below.
Best VPNs for Fortnite:
- NordVPN Our top choice for Fortnite. Large server network with extremely fast, reliable servers. Employs military-grade encryption and security. 30-day money-back guarantee.
- Surfshark Budget provider with a particular focus on privacy. Works great for gaming, streaming, or torrenting.
- ExpressVPN Vast network of servers optimized for high-speed, low-latency connections. Can unblock most popular streaming content without compromising your privacy.
- CyberGhost Easy to use apps that are great for beginners and fast servers.
- IPVanish Allows 10 simultaneous connections and is great for playing Fortnite on mobile devices.
- VyprVPN Uses decent masking techniques to avoid traffic type detection.
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VPNs work by moving your internet traffic through an encrypted tunnel. In practice, this means that your activities are hidden and able to bypass network firewalls and website blacklists. Also, you’re assigned a new IP address every time you connect. This means that your activities can’t be easily traced back to you, and allows you to easily bypass Fortnite IP bans. As your Internet Service Provider (ISP) can’t tell exactly what you’ve been doing, VPNs greatly increase your privacy online.
Fortnite has lots of anti-cheating software built-in, and since VPNs can be used to circumvent IP bans, Epic Games has done its best to prevent their usage. If you try to use a VPN that’s not in our list below, you’ll likely see the following message: “You were removed from the match due to internet lag, your IP or machine, VPN usage, or for cheating. We recommend not utilizing VPN or proxy services while attempting to play Fortnite.”
Choosing the right VPN for Fortnite
Every VPN is different, and not all of them are suitable for using with Fortnite. Some are faster than others, for instance, while others offer additional security options or quicker responses from customer support. To identify the best VPNs for Fortnite, we looked for services which met the criteria below:
- A wide network of servers to choose from
- High-speed, low-latency connections
- Currently undetectable by Fornite’s anti-cheating system
- Exemplary encryption and security features
- A logging policy that puts the user’s privacy first
How to play Fortnite abroad or remove an IP ban with a VPN
VPNs might seem complicated at first, but they’re actually very simple to use. Follow the steps below to set-up a VPN and start playing Fortnite again in no time.
Here’s how to play Fortnite or remove an IP ban with a VPN:
- Sign up to one of the VPNs in the list below (we recommend NordVPN).
- Download and install the correct version of the VPN software for your operating system.
- Connect to a server (ideally one that’s close to your actual location, since this keeps latency as low as possible).
- Try playing Fortnite. You should be able to play as normal, without being kicked out or banned.
Best VPNs for Fortnite
Below is our list of the best VPNs for Fortnite:
Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS
NordVPN has several features that make it excellent for gaming. First, there’s the sheer number of servers available (more than 5,000 across 59 countries). But better still, some of these are specifically designed to mitigate DDoS attacks. As NordVPN permits up to six simultaneous connections and is capable of unblocking platforms like Netflix, BBC iPlayer, and Amazon Prime Video, it’s ideal for people looking for a fast, secure, general-purpose VPN.
This VPN includes all of the usual security features — 256-bit encryption, DNS/IPv6 leak protection, and a kill switch — but also allows users to create more sophisticated setups. You can choose to use Tor over VPN, block malware and ads automatically, and even connect to two VPNs at once. It doesn’t log any personally identifiable information, so your activities remain private at all times.
NordVPN offers dedicated apps for Windows, Linux, Android, MacOS, and iOS devices. Linux platforms and selected wireless routers are supported, but must be configured manually.
- Fastest speeds around
- Military-grade 256-bit encryption for great privacy
- A fantastic option for streaming and torrenting
- Easily bypasses restrictions on major geo-locked platforms
- Keeps no logs whatsoever
- Desktop app is a bit clunky compared to other providers
BEST VPN FOR FORTNITE:NordVPN is our #1 choice for Fortnite. Offers strong security features, a no-logs policy, and a risk-free 30-day money back guarantee.
Read our full NordVPN review.
Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS
Surfshark is a great choice for anyone looking to game safely. It has 1,700+ servers in more than 60 countries, so you should be able to get a low-latency connection regardless of your location. Further, with strong unblocking ability, you’re not just limited to playing Fortnite; you can also access services like PUBG and Dota 2. Surfshark permits you to connect any number of devices, which is especially generous given that most VPNs have a six-connection limit.
This service is known for its powerful security features. There’s 256-bit encryption, automatic ad-blocking and malware-scanning, a kill switch, split tunneling functionality, and protection against WebRTC, DNS, and IPv6 leaks. Further, Surfshark doesn’t keep any logs so your activities can’t be traced back to you. There is the option to pay in Bitcoin, Ripple, or Ethereum if you’d like, though. Customer support is on-hand 24/7 via live chat and email.
Surfshark provides Android, Windows, MacOS, iOS, and Linux apps. It also works with supported wireless routers but must be installed manually.
- Lets you protect every device you own
- Unblocks all of the most popular streaming platforms
- Strict no-logging policy
- Good speeds and unblocking ability
- Takes security very seriously
- Smaller network than some of its rivals
- Still has the occasional slow server
Read our full review of Surfshark here.
BEST BUDGET VPN:Surfshark is a wallet-friendly VPN with fast enough speeds for lag-free Fortnite sessions. It also protects you from snoopers and DDoS attacks. As if that wasn’t enough, this service comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS
ExpressVPN has more than 3,000 servers spread across 94 different countries. This means that no matter where you are, there’s a server nearby you can use to play Fortnite with minimal lag. This shouldn’t be a problem, however, as ExpressVPN’s servers are fast enough to stream HD video with no noticeable buffering. As Fortnite uses nowhere near as much bandwidth, it won’t pose much of an issue.
This service features a host of strong security options designed to keep your personal information safe. There’s 256-bit encryption enabled by default, perfect forward secrecy, DNS leak protection, and a kill switch that stops data transferal should you disconnect from the VPN. ExpressVPN keeps no record of your session or activity data. 24/7 live chat is available in case of any issues.
This VPN has Windows, Android, MacOS, iOS, and Linux apps. It can be manually installed on supported network routers.
- One of the fastest VPNs for streaming with many server options is ideal for Fortnite
- Hundreds of low-latency servers to choose from
- Easily unblocks Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, and BBC iPlayer
- Not the cheapest option here without a discount coupon
- Few advanced configuration options
SAFER GAMING:ExpressVPN puts your security first and is a pleasure to use with Fortnite. Fast, user-friendly, and hard to beat on privacy and security. There is a 30-day money-back guarantee too.
Read our full review of ExpressVPN.
Money-back guarantee: 45 DAYS
CyberGhost is an excellent gaming VPN for several reasons: it’s easy-to-use, allows you to find the fastest of its 5,700+ servers automatically, and even features a list of the least crowded servers. It’s also ideal for streaming and offers one-click unblocking for some of the most popular streaming platforms including Amazon Prime Video, Netflix, and ESPN.
256-bit encryption and DNS/IPv6/port forwarding leak protection is enabled by default. More advanced options, such as automatic ad and malware blocking, a kill switch, and HTTPS redirection, can each be turned on via a simple toggle switch. CyberGhost has a strict no-logs policy so you can trust that your privacy is in good hands.
One of the best things about this VPN is how little setup is required. CyberGhost provides MacOS, iOS, Windows, Linux and Android apps. It can be configured manually to work with supported internet routers.
- Easy to use apps make this great for getting started
- Network is uncongested and has low-latency
- Apps can conveniently auto-connect to the fastest servers
- Keeps no user activity logs and provides strong encryption to bypass activity detection
- Doesn’t work in China or the UAE
- Could offer more customizable options
GREAT FOR BEGINNERS:CyberGhost is easy to use. Strong on privacy, fast speeds and reliable with Fortnite. We found it easy to set up and use. 45-day money back guarantee.
Read our full CyberGhost review.
Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS
IPVanish is a user-friendly, multi-platform VPN with fast speeds and a surprisingly wide range of security features. It has over 1,000 servers across the world, allows you to secure any number of devices, and enables you to play Fortnite on mobile without any significant slowdown.
IPVanish is ideal for those looking to use the internet safely, even when away from home. It includes 256-bit encryption, a kill switch, and protection against DNS, IPv6 leaks. However, there are a few more advanced settings. Users can block LAN traffic, obfuscate OpenVPN traffic, and change your IP address at regular intervals. This service doesn’t log any personally identifiable information so details of your activities can’t be provided to third parties, even if requested.
IPVanish offers dedicated apps for Windows, MacOS, Android, iOS, and Amazon Fire TV devices. While there are no apps for Linux devices or routers, this VPN can be manually installed on these systems.
- Plenty of low-latency servers around the globe that work well with Fortnite
- Keeps no logs, has automatic kill switch and wifi protection
- Apps automatically connect to low latency servers
- Allows you to connect any number of devices at once
- Claims 24/7 support, but tickets can take one or two days.
- Apps don’t work in China
NO CONNECTION LIMIT:IPVanish is great for families that need multiple connections. Easy to set up and use with Fortnite. Preferred by users who require high standards of privacy. Can’t unblock as many streaming services as some of its rivals. 30-day money-back guarantee.
Read our full IPVanish review.
Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS
VyprVPN has high-speed, self-maintained servers the world over, although they’re mostly clustered in high-traffic areas like the US, the UK, and Europe. It uses its proprietary Chameleon software to mask the telltale signs that you’re using a VPN, and as such, is less likely to be detected when playing Fortnite or any other online game. Further, VyprVPN is capable of unblocking streaming sites like Netflix, Hulu, and Sky Go, so it’s good for more than just gaming.
End-to-end 256-bit encryption, a kill switch, and DNS leak protection features are included. While this VPN does log your source IP address, data transfer volume, and connection time, this information is only used for network diagnostics and is deleted after 30 days. VyprVPN offers 24/7 customer support via email, 365 days of the year.
This service has easy-to-install apps for Windows, MacOS, iOS, and Android. Additionally, VyprVPN offers detailed instructions showing how to manually configure it to work with Linux platforms and supported routers.
- Plenty of low-latency servers in high-traffic areas
- Good traffic masking capabilities are good at avoiding Fortnite detection
- Speeds are fast and stable
- Not the cheapest option on this list
- Apps are slick but lack advanced configuration options
- Two-tier pricing structure is a little confusing
UNLIMITED DATA USAGE:VyprVPN is user friendly. Good speeds and uptime as all servers are owned by VyprVPN. Not the cheapest option. 30-day money-back guarantee.
Read our full VyprVPN review.
Can I play Fortnite with a free VPN?
You might be tempted to use a free VPN with Fornite, but we strongly advise against it. Firstly, with fewer servers and more users than their premium counterparts, free VPNs generally won’t be able to provide high enough speeds to play Fortnite smoothly. Second, Epic Games has put a lot of effort into detecting VPN users. There are only a few services that reliably work now, and if you’re caught, you face the possibility of a permanent account ban. This type of ban can’t be bypassed with a VPN, so why take the risk?
Nobody starts a free VPN service out of the goodness of their heart. Like any business, they exist to make money. However, since they don’t charge up front, they’ve had to develop other ways to generate profit. These methods range from placing ads onto the sites you visit, to tracking your activities with cookies, even after you’ve disconnected. The resulting activity profile can then be sold to third parties without your knowledge.
VPNs are intended to increase your online security, but many free services actually pose a substantial threat to your privacy. Many free VPNs don’t actually encrypt your traffic at all, and worse, some even install malware onto your device. We’ve seen cases where free VPNs have engaged in shady business practices such as selling their users’ bandwidth to be used in a botnet. We recommend using a trustworthy VPN provider with a history of protecting its customers’ privacy. This protects you and prevents your data from being sold to the highest bidder.
I used a VPN but I still can’t play Fortnite. Why?
Fortnite appears to have three different kinds of bans: one based on your IP address, one based on the Hardware ID (HWID) of one of your system’s components (most commonly the motherboard), and one that effectively makes your account unusable. VPNs can only bypass IP bans; you can get a different IP address simply by connecting to a different server.
Hardware bans are more difficult to get around, but it is possible. Fortnite forums are littered with recommendations for shady software which claims to be able to change your HWID, but these pose a real threat to your system and should be avoided entirely. Instead, the truly determined have three choices: use a different PC, reinstall your operating system, or change your HWID in the registry editor (not recommended).
If your entire Fortnite account is banned, the only way you can use it again is if the ban is overturned by support staff.
How can I limit the damage of a Fornite account ban?
If you’re concerned that you might receive a Fortnite account ban, there are a few things you can do to offset some of the damage. First, only use an account where you haven’t paid for anything, whether it’s cosmetic skins, V-Bucks, or the Game Pass. This does mean that you’ll only have access to the Battle Royale game mode.
Secondly, once you’ve signed up with a VPN provider, follow them on social media. If a service upgrades its detection measures, your VPN provider will likely release an update saying which servers still work. In some cases, you may be advised to temporarily stop playing. Often, VPN services are able to beat the new detection features relatively quickly, so there shouldn’t be much downtime.
VPN for Fortnite FAQ
What is Fortnite Port Forwarding and do I need to use it?
When you’re playing an online game like Fortnite, your computer is constantly opening and closing connections to the server. In most cases, it does so using a system known as UPnP (Universal Plug and Play). However, no automated system is perfect, and in some very rare cases, UPnP can get tripped up by your network settings or the game’s server configuration, causing higher latency than you would normally see.
In cases like these, port forwarding could help get you back on track. Essentially, port forwarding routes your traffic through ports that are permanently open instead of opening and closing them as needed. Most people will see no difference from port forwarding, but if you’re having problems playing Fortnite at all because of lag, it doesn’t hurt to try.
How do I change Fortnite install location?
The easiest way to change Fortnite’s installation directory is to uninstall it and simply choose a different location when reinstalling it through the Epic Games launcher. If you’re in a rush or just have slow internet, though, there is a way to move the files that you’ve already installed. Here’s how:
- Navigate to your current installation directory (likely C:\Games\Epic Games\Fortnite if you’re on a Windows PC).
- Copy everything here into a new folder and name it something like “Fortnite - backup”.
- Open the Epic Launcher, click the gear icon next to the game’s launch button, and select Remove.
- Begin installing the game in your desired location, but stop it after a minute or so.
- Go to your new installation directory, delete the Fortnite folder and replace it with “Fortnite - backup” (or whatever you named it earlier).
- Rename your backup folder “Fortnite”, without the quotation marks.
Where are the Fortnite servers located?
According to Epic, Fortnite currently has servers in Brazil, Europe, Oceania, Asia, the Middle East, and both coasts of the US. There’s no more detail than that at this time but the publisher does say that it’s looking to expand its network even further in the future.
How can I get a lower ping on Fortnite?
The quickest and easiest way to lower your ping is to switch from a wireless connection to a wired one. However, this may not be practical for everyone. Here are a few things that can help you reduce ping and get smoother gameplay on Fortnite:
- Make sure you’re not downloading anything or torrenting in the background
- Reduce your distance to the router
- If you’re using a VPN, connect to a server that’s closer to your actual location
- Try using port forwarding
How much bandwidth does Fortnite use?
People report pretty wildly varying data usage from Fortnite but on the plus side, their reports have one thing in common: very low bandwidth requirements. In fact, the highest data usage report we’ve seen suggested that Fortnite used around 50MB per half hour. By comparison, the lowest report (allegedly verified by Android’s internal data management tools) showed just under 25MB data usage per half hour of gameplay.
Does Fortnite work on Linux?
Although it’s possible to install and use the Epic Games Launcher on Linux using Lutris, at the moment, you can’t actually play Fortnite. This is because the game’s anti-cheating software detects that something is wrong and rather than trying to find out what, it decides to err on the side of caution, preventing you from accessing the game. If you’re interested in playing Fortnite on Linux, there really isn’t much you can do except let Epic Games know.