How to Access Gmail in China 2022 Guide

UX/UI Designer at - Adobe

Gmail is one of the most popular email services in the world, but it’s not available in China. This guide will show you how to access Gmail in China using a VPN and an app called BearVPN.

The “can china receive emails from gmail” is a question that has been asked in the past. The answer to this question is yes, but there are some limitations.

China is not exactly regarded as the final stronghold of media and internet freedom. The country’s communist government has long blocked its residents’ access to websites and services that are located elsewhere.

Despite the fact that the Chinese constitution guarantees its people the right to free speech and the press, the government may nonetheless repress any news story by asserting that it discloses state secrets or puts the nation at risk due to the ambiguity of Chinese laws.


The concept of “state secrets” used by the Chinese government is, at best, nebulous, enabling the government to restrict any material it deems to be detrimental to its political or economic interests. This results in media and internet regulations that are subject to daily revision, ostensibly at the whim of Chinese authorities.

Access to a website is often at best sluggish even when it is not restricted. According to a 2018 study, China’s internet speed came in at 141st out of 200 nations, with an amazing average speed of 2.4 Mbps.

(It should be mentioned that the China Internet Development Alliance claimed that the average broadband speed countrywide was 19 Mbps in the fourth quarter of 2017).

Websites and services that many in the West believe to be vital to their daily lives are blocked by the government. Google, Gmail, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Netflix, and many more are among the websites and services that are blocked.

People who visit China for business or pleasure find website censorship like this to be a real hassle. This is particularly true for travelers who use Gmail to communicate with friends, family, and coworkers when they are away from home.


Visit the Comparitech website, use their Blocked in China tool, and input the URL of the website you often browse to see whether it can be accessed from within China. In a flash, the website will inform you whether access is permitted.

The Simplest Method in China to Access Gmail

What can a person do if they need to visit a website in China that is blocked? Is it possible to get around China’s Great Firewall and access prohibited websites and services like Gmail? Fortunately, there are a few methods to access Gmail, one of which is more dependable than the others.

I share with you my expertise of how to get over the Great Firewall and access Gmail and other restricted online services in this essay.

I’ve tried a lot of VPNs, and I’ve discovered that NordVPN is the best dependable VPN to use while trying to access Gmail from China.

While within Chinese boundaries, the company provides dependable access to Gmail and other restricted websites and services. The supplier provides trustworthy security for a wide range of mobile and desktop device platforms, and its customer service is unmatched.

Gmail Access From Within China

There are two ways to successfully access your Gmail account when protected by the Great Firewall.

Use of a Virtual Private Network (VPN) is typically more effective than using a proxy server, which is one option (VPN).

I’ll examine both possibilities, describe how they operate, and list the benefits and drawbacks of each approach. In addition to describing how to use a VPN and a proxy server, I’ll also share some of my own experiences with you.

Notably, I discovered stories of Chinese nationals being detained or penalized for circumventing internet censorship, but I found no information on detention or fines of international tourists.

However, there have been instances when foreign journalists’ visas have been withdrawn and they have been expelled from the nation. So use this as forewarning.

How Come Tor?

Let me start by explaining why I did not suggest utilizing a Tor Browser to conceal your online activity from the Chinese authorities.

It’s because government authorities in the nation instructed the Great Firewall to block traffic using Tor’s anonymizing features.

To protect your identity from anybody eavesdropping on your connection, the Tor project is a free network managed entirely by volunteers. Online conduct is mostly anonymous as a consequence.


As you can guess, a communist government that strives to keep its population cut off from the information accessible on the web does not take kindly to anonymous activities.

While the Tor browser initially succeeded in masking Chinese internet traffic, the people in charge of the Great Firewall have developed a method to identify and stop Tor traffic. The method they use is too complex to discuss here, but readers who are curious in it may study the technical document at the Cornell University Library website.

2. Getting Past the Great Firewall Using a Proxy Server

We’ll start by looking at how to use a proxy server to cloak your online activities from China’s Great Firewall.

A machine known as a proxy server serves as a go-between for your computer and the web servers you want to access. It reroutes the client’s network traffic, enabling you to connect indirectly to the desired web site.

A specific resource is contacted by the computer connected to the proxy server in order to get data, such as the weather in Sydney, Australia. The asking computer receives the request from the proxy server, which then forwards it to the appropriate server and gets the information.


By masking your online queries and the source from which the data is acquired, this way of getting the data aids in concealing your true online behavior. By merely masking the activity, you may use this to let you access Gmail and other stuff that is restricted in China.

While utilizing a proxy server is a tried-and-true method to access prohibited websites while protected by the Great Firewall, Chinese authorities have improved its detection and blocking capabilities of proxy server use.

Such resources are out of current nearly as soon as they are released, despite the efforts of some helpful people to maintain an up-to-date list of accessible proxy servers that still bypass the Great Firewall. Because of this, the list is less trustworthy and users have a hit-or-miss success rate.

Proxy servers are also known for slowing down users’ internet connections, and given that China’s link to the rest of the world is already among the slowest, it’s possible that a proxy server won’t be sufficient for your requirements, particularly if you use Gmail to send files. Your results may differ.

3. Getting Around the Great Firewall by Using a VPN

In conclusion, a Virtual Private Network connection is probably your best option for successfully tunneling over China’s Great Firewall.

Anyone watching your internet connection cannot learn anything thanks to the encrypted connection provided by a VPN. This is accomplished by establishing a secure tunnel between your computer or other device and the VPN server.

The online behavior of VPN users is protected from prying eyes via an encrypted connection. While VPNs have gained popularity as a means of securing sensitive information from criminals and other bad guys, they have also emerged as a favoured weapon against governments that track internet traffic.


When using a VPN, you join a VPN server that is situated somewhere else in the globe.

Ideally, you should connect to a VPN server situated in the United States if you want to view a website or other online material that is from that nation. This normally enables you to circumvent any limitations imposed on the material by authorities or other parties.

Here’s a humorous tale: During a lecture on internet safety at his alma mater, the Harbin Institute of Technology, on April 3, 2016, Fang Binxing, the creator of the Great Firewall, was forced to make a point by utilizing a VPN to access websites hosted in South Korea.

Fang made use of the illicit tool that vexes the Chinese government in order to access the content and continue his talk. Fang was so embarrassed that he ended up ducking out of the room immediately after his talk instead of participating in a planned Q & A session that was to take place following his speech.

Resuming our regularly scheduled show now.

How Effective Are VPNs?

Users living in or traveling to regions blocked by the Great Firewall of China are known to benefit greatly from using VPNs. Many VPN service providers take great satisfaction in being able to provide a dependable solution for Chinese citizens to connect to prohibited material.

A VPN is still your best option for connecting to the outside world, even though Great Firewall specialists have been working on techniques to identify and block VPN connections and in some instances have been successful.

Pro Tip: If you’re thinking about using a VPN to access websites that are restricted in China and are intending to travel there, be sure to sign up for one and set up your VPN software on your computer or other device before you travel there.

Although many VPNs operate flawlessly in China, the government does restrict the websites of many VPN providers, making it difficult to buy and set up a VPN from behind the Great Firewall.


The Chinese government and VPN companies are engaged in an ongoing conflict. Occasionally, a VPN service would function well for the first few days I was in China, and then all of a sudden halt.

Make careful to look online for reviews of any supplier you’re thinking of employing to access content behind the Great Firewall.

Which VPN Should I Use in China to Unblock Gmail?

Although there are many excellent VPNs accessible and it seems like there are new ones every day, just a select few service providers really take delight in providing dependable VPN service from China. Only one, however, consistently operates from behind the Great Firewall, as far as I can tell.

As I said above, be sure you join up for a VPN service, download the software, and install it before entering China, regardless of the VPN company you choose. Many VPN companies’ websites are blocked in the nation.


An outstanding track record of service from behind China’s Great Firewall is provided by NordVPN (see the entire review here). While I was in China, I used it many times, and each time it worked wonderfully, enabling me to access Gmail, Facebook, Twitter, and a variety of other services that the Chinese government often blocks.

If you have any problems utilizing the VPN service while in a region of the globe that has a lot of restrictions, NordVPN’s customer care is unmatched and always accessible to assist. The service provider provides live chat assistance around-the-clock, email support, a searchable support library, and a method for submitting and managing support tickets.

Thanks to the provider’s app selection, which includes programs for the Windows, macOS, iOS, Android, Amazon Fire, Linux, and Android TV device platforms, app support shouldn’t be a problem. For the platforms of Chrome and Firefox, there are browser extensions available.


In order to secure your privacy, NordVPN additionally provides NordLynx (WireGuard), OpenVPN (TCP, UDP), L2TP-IPsec, SSTP, and PPTP encryption methods for connections.

Allow the app to complete its connection attempt before trying again since it can take longer than usual to complete a connection from within China. Additionally, the service provider advises using the NordLynx connection protocol and the Quick Connect option.

Your online actions while using the service are in no way recorded by this provider. This implies that there are no records of your online activity, which means neither the government nor any content providers may access them. This implies that no legal action will be taken against you for your online activity. They consistently have quick and trouble-free connections.

Particularly if you use the provider in a repressive nation like China, NordVPN memberships are quite cheaply priced and provide exceptional value for the level of service and safety they offer.

The company offers a 30-day money-back guarantee and accepts PayPal, credit cards, and Bitcoin in addition to other widely used payment methods.

Visit the NordVPN website for additional details.

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Action Items

Make an internet-related plan of action before traveling to China if you intend to do so. If you plan to access your Gmail inbox or other restricted websites like Facebook, Twitter, and other well-known websites, you should be ready.

1. Before your visit, get organized

Visit the Great Firewall of China website and input the URL of the website in question if you are unsure if a frequently visited website is accessible from behind the Great Firewall of China. If the site is available, the website will let you know.

Always be prepared since site availability might change suddenly.

2. Sign up for a VPN or proxy service.

You may access to other websites by subscribing to a proxy server service. Better still, sign up for a VPN service like NordVPN, which is my top recommendation.

3. Verify That Your VPN Functions Inside China

Verify that your VPN is functional inside of China. The majority of VPN providers provide details on how to use their service from behind the Great Firewall. Contact the provider’s customer care staff if you are unable to discover any information. They can let you know whether their VPN is functional in China.

4. Before traveling to China, install and configure your VPN software.

Before entering China, configure your preferred VPN service on your computer or mobile device. It might be challenging to download the installation files for certain VPN websites since they are not accessible in a browser in China.


You should be able to access your Gmail inbox as well as your other preferred websites and services when you are in China if you heed the guidelines I’ve provided here. Travel safely!

If you are trying to send email from outside of China, Gmail might not be accessible. The “sending email to china problems” is a guide on how to access Gmail in China.

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