How To Unblock VPN at School, Hotel, College, or University

Unblock VPN access using a VPN service with Smart DNS connection

by Milan Stanojevic
Milan Stanojevic
Milan Stanojevic
Windows & Software Expert
Milan has been enthusiastic about PCs ever since his childhood days, and this led him to take interest in all PC-related technologies. Before joining WindowsReport, he worked as... read more
Fact checked by Edgar Nicov
Edgar Nicov
Edgar Nicov
Privacy & VPN Expert
Since the dial-up Internet era, Edgar was interested in online resources. From forums to e-commerce websites, he started digging into how those resources could generate revenue. Today he... read more
Affiliate Disclosure
  • People usually want to use VPNs either at work, at school, or in a hotel. But public institutions tend to practice network restrictions.
  • If your VPN got blocked in one of the above scenarios, check out this guide to promptly regain access to the web. 
  • You might consider leading privacy tools that can unblock VPN connection on any of these social environments 
  • We included market-leading software that offers advanced privacy with Smart DNS connection. 

The most common places people want to use VPNs are either at work, at school, in a hotel, or at college and/or university grounds. These are the areas that usually have public Wi-Fi, so as long as you have the password, there’s easy access to the internet for you.

However, even with all the access information given, these same institutions have restrictions as to who or what can access their networks, and this includes apps such as VPNs.

So what happens when your VPN is blocked at school, hotel, college, or university?

Thankfully, there are ways to bypass such restrictions and get on with your work or browsing. Check out the listed solutions below for the specific place your VPN has been blocked.

Best VPNs we recommend

  1. Private Internet Access - Access content across the globe at the highest speed rate.
  2. NordVPN - Secure multiple devices and enjoy stable connections anywhere.
  3. SurfShark - Price convenient VPN service with all-rounded security features.
  4. CyberGhost - Connect to thousands of servers for persistent seamless browsing.
  5. ExpressVPN - Browse the web from multiple devices with increased security protocols.

How to unblock school or hotel Wi-Fi without VPN?

There are alternative methods to access your school Internet without using a VPN, namely with a Smart DNS proxy that can work on multiple devices.

With this privacy tool, it’s possible to bypass school or hotel Wi-Fi web restrictions, but it can’t offer the same quality as a VPN because it lacks the enhanced security or multiple servers you can choose from.

Hence, it is better to consider VPN software with Smart DNS features included in one subscription, knowing that both alternatives require you to pay for it.

How to unblock websites on school Wi-Fi?

As we mentioned, the most suitable method to regain access to your favorite websites is to use a VPN service that includes advanced protocols and a Smart DNS utility.

What VPNs to use on school Wi-Fi?

According to some Reddit users, the most reliable VPNs you can use on a school connection are the ones with the following ports:

  • VPN that supports port 443 (HTTPS)
  • 80 (HTTP)
  • 53 (DNS)

In this regard, you can use specific VPNs that support these ports type as the ones mentioned below:

➡️ ExpressVPN

➡️ Private Internet Access

➡️ NordVPN

How do I unblock my VPN in schools, hotels, colleges, or universities?

  1. School
  2. College
  3. University
  4. Hotels

1. School WiFi blocks VPN

Networks that block VPN traffic can be unblocked using several techniques and/or tools to regain full access. Even if your VPN cannot get through the school’s firewall, there are others that actually can – they’re called Stealth VPNs.

Schools these days have internet access, but admins are always checking that students don’t do monkey business online, so they monitor and/or restrict access by blocking social networking, gaming sites, as well as VPNs.

The good news is that blocking such VPN traffic requires identification, but you can disguise your traffic and make it unblockable.

Private Internet Access

PIA is a world-class VPN service owned by Kape Technologies with one major goal, which is to free the internet for you.

Cleverly bypassing admin restrictions, geo-targeting, ISP throttling, and more, PIA is your trusted partner in fighting online censorship.

With PIA, you will be able to circumvent network restrictions imposed by any institution, schools included, and enjoy lightning-fast download speeds, unlimited bandwidth, and an impressive global collection of 3292 + servers while you’re at it.

Let’s quickly look at its key features:

  • Private IP address allocation for anonymous browsing
  • Protection against your ISP and more with a strict no-logs policy
  • Liberate streaming, bypass censorship, and unblock geo-restricted websites and content
  • Highest download speeds and unlimited bandwidth without any buffering or slow loading times (ideal for streaming, gaming, and P2P torrenting)
  • Access to servers from all over the world (3292 + servers in 46 locations)
  • Secure Protection on Public Wi-Fi and military-grade encryption for your traffic data
  • Block ads, trackers, and malware
  • Secure VPN Protocols and tunneling technology
  • Protects up to 10 devices simultaneously with just 1 subscription

Private Internet Access

Bypass network restrictions in any institution, whenever, and wherever with PIA!

Check price Visit website

Note: We suggest you avoid free VPNs because most of them do not protect you at all.

1.1 How to unblock VPNs in school

A stealth VPN can scramble your traffic so that it won’t be identified as VPN traffic or it is disguised as regular TLS encrypted web traffic. If you want to unblock your VPN, do this:

1.1.1 Run OpenVPN on port 443

This port is used mostly by SSL/TLS encrypted web traffic as a standard internet encryption protocol used each time a site is accessed with sensitive data.

OpenVPN already uses the SSL encryption library, so just switch the port to 443 and it will slip through except for the most difficult DPI firewalls. VPNs let you switch port numbers or give dedicated server locations to allow access to port 443, so check with your VPN’s tech support on how to set it up.

1.1.2 Obfuscation

Most VPN protocols have a data packet header sort of like a fingerprint that can let a firewall recognize VPN traffic. In this case, using a VPN with obfuscation or stealth technology will obscure the packet headers so that the fingerprint isn’t recognizable.

1.1.3 Use TOR network

For advanced obfuscation, you can use the TOR network for maximum privacy and unblocking. This makes your VPN unblockable, but it will be routed via multiple proxy layers that are encrypted, and come with different speeds so it can get really slow.

The configuration process is also complicated, but there are VPNs with built-in VPN-over-TOR support.

2. VPN is blocked at College

Network administrators in colleges usually block site access, especially to social networking and streaming platforms like Netflix and others. This is because students are known to do a lot of torrenting, so college Wi-Fi was one of the major culprits for this, hence it was nipped in the bud.

Today, college students can only dream about torrenting, plus the main idea is to help them focus more on their studies. Additionally, the bandwidth use is affected if each student is downloading or streaming videos, so throttling happens often and faster.

However, since students are in a digital world, there is a need to access these sites, so restrictions affect and defeat the intentions of study and research, which are meant to break information barriers and increase global collaboration.

This is why students use VPNs to circumvent such restrictions.

However, colleges too can block VPNs, so to get around these limitations, you can either use VPNs with obfuscation or change the port number. In most cases, college firewalls detect encryption tools via Deep Packet Inspection, so to bypass this, hide your encryption protocols.

3. VPN is blocked at University

This is a place of higher learning, and what better way to increase knowledge and share information than by using the internet?

Unfortunately, like colleges, Universities are also subjected to Wi-Fi restrictions on campus networks, which can block VPN services on specific ports.

While university firewalls do that, HTTPS/HTTP ports are open. Similarly, the university can use advanced filtering methods like Deep Packet Inspection.

Port Blocking is the most common technique used to block all ports that are not necessary to browse the Internet, which is why any application or service that uses a different port gets blocked.

Encrypted traffic (HTTPS) uses port 443, and unencrypted traffic (HTTP) uses port 80. This is why ports 443 and 80 are always open.

While default configurations of OpenVPN, IPsec/L2TP, and PPTP do not use any of these, SSTP is the only encryption protocol that works on port 443 by default.

It is thus the best protocol to use on networks that need port 443 for regular browsing. Unlike PPTP, SSTP is very secure and only works on Windows.

You can forward OpenVPN via port 443, but not all VPN providers allow this though they have this feature in their desktop software (mobile devices don’t support it).

Hence, if the university firewall only blocks ports that encryption protocols are using, choose a VPN that offers SSTP protocol or allows OpenVPN port forwarding to port 443 (maybe port 80) so as to bypass the firewall and gain unrestricted access to the Internet.

Another way VPNs are blocked is via a highly advanced firewall like the Chinese Firewall that uses DPI to detect encryption tools.

This means the port forwarding isn’t enough as the firewall can distinguish traffic and block the data routed through your VPN. In this case, hide or mask encryption protocols by sending OpenVPN over SSL and SSH tunnels.

Using stealth VPNs can mask your VPN traffic and make it undetectable because all your traffic will look like HTTPS so your university won’t tell you’re using a VPN.

Otherwise, you can get a cheap smartphone and make a WiFi hotspot.

4. VPN is blocked in hotels

If you’ve tried using a VPN in a hotel, you may find that it is blocked as they may want you to pay for in-hotel movies instead of streaming for free.

Here’s what to do when your VPN is blocked by the hotel:

  • Disguise your VPN traffic as regular web browser traffic, which makes it impossible for the hotel’s network to block your VPN service unless they want to block all HTTPs browser traffic, which is unlikely.
  • Check with your office IT admin on your computer’s configuration so they can log the situation and troubleshoot for you. In the case of an overlapping subnet, the hotel router assigns your machine a private IP address range, and this matches that of the office, so when your VPN client connects, it uses the current source IP address (office network), and the gateway you connect to sees this as a local address, so they overlap and deny your VPN connection.
  • Ask your IT admin to set up a different IPsec client for you to navigate automatically.
  • Use stealth VPN technology to disguise and/or scramble your VPN traffic so that it isn’t easily identified as such, or disguised as regular encrypted web traffic. You can do this by running OpenVPN on port 443, or using stealth VPN or obfuscation.
  • You can also run your VPN through the Tor network as it makes it virtually unblockable and highly anonymous. The downside is your VPN will be routed via multiple encrypted proxy layers with varying speeds.
  • Switch between DNS servers by replacing the DNS of your ISP or increasing your browsing speed.


Hide.Me VPN

Hide.Me is a VPN tool that will work great in hotels in countries where the internet connection is limited.

This eVenture Ltd. owned VPN client will allow you to connect via multiple servers all over the world, so you can be untraceable. Moreover, Hide.Me work in more privacy-sensible countries like China and Russia.

Another great feature of this tool is that you can use it on 10 different devices. More so, it doesn’t affect your bandwidth to any noticeable degree, so your browsing will not be just secure, it will also be fast.

Let’s quickly look at its key features:

  • No sign-up or registration required
  • No logs of your online activity
  • Access to 1700 servers located worldwide
  • IP Leak Protection and Split Tunneling
  • Strong AES-256 encryption
  • Secure VPN protocols
  • Compatible with all major operating systems


With Hide.Me you will protect your identity wherever you are in the world on 10 different devices at once.

Check price Visit website

Explore more VPN Solutions to cover each and every one of your needs. Don’t forget to visit our Unblocking VPNs Hub as well.

Are there other ways you know to get around VPN blocking in hotels, schools, universities, or colleges? Let us know in the comments section below.

Your connection is not secure - websites you visit can find out your details:

  • Your IP
  • Your IP Address:

Companies can sell this information, alongside your location and internet provider name, and profit from it by serving targeted ads or monitoring your data usage.

Use a VPN to protect your privacy and secure your connection.

We recommend Private Internet Access, a VPN with a no-log policy, open source code, ad blocking and much more; now 79% off.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Run OpenVPN on port 443
    Get a VPN with obfuscation or stealth technology
    Pair your VPN tool with the TOR network
    Hide or mask encryption protocols by sending OpenVPN over SSL and SSH tunnels
    Choose a VPN that offers SSTP protocol
    Switch between DNS servers

  • It is recommended that you use a VPN tool whenever you go online through a public Wi-fi network, and this includes hotels’ network. For instance, PIA and Cyberghost VPNs both provide encrypted protection even on public networks.

  • Indeed they can, mainly because they wish to limit free streaming and promote their own paying services instead. Assuming that remote access is only performed via SSL, some hotels block IPsec ports, which also affects VPNs.

  • Use a strong VPN like PIA that allows you to switch port numbers to port 443. Using a VPN with obfuscation or stealth technology can also help with this task or alternatively, you can pair your VPN with the Tor browser for maximum privacy and unblocking.

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