Do VPNs Help with Ping? – Yes, But Not Always…

Justin Oyaro

By Justin Oyaro . 12 July 2024

Cybersecurity Expert

Yes, a VPN can help lower your ping and improve your internet experience. But it can only do so if your high ping is caused by game server or Internet Service Provider (ISP) issues.

In this article, I’ll explain what causes high ping and how to lower it with a VPN.

Keep reading to find out!

What Is Ping?

Ping, or latency, refers to the time it takes for data to travel from your device to a destination server and back. This round-trip delay is measured in milliseconds (ms).

High ping can slow down your online activities and is particularly frustrating in multiplayer games, where even a slight lag can mean the difference between winning and losing.

For most online activities, a ping of 100 ms is sufficient. For gaming, a ping of 20 ms is considered excellent, while anything below 50 ms is ideal for first-person shooter (FPS) and real-time strategy games.

However, if your ping exceeds 100 ms, you are likely to experience noticeable lag.

What Causes High Ping?

The number one culprit when it comes to high latency is a poor internet connection. You need fast download and upload speeds for a good ping.

If your high ping is caused by slow internet speed, a VPN won’t do you any good. In fact, it may slow things down even more.

However, sometimes ISPs may throttle down the connection to specific sites causing your ping to spike.

Additionally, ISPs experience technical problems, which can increase latency. Some implement cheap connections that use indirect routing to lower operational costs, leading to lengthier round-trip times.

Another reason why you may experience high ping is geographic location. For instance, connecting to a South Korean game server from the US will result in a higher ping than when on a North American server.

Lastly, you may get a high ping if the destination server is experiencing an unusually high number of users or requests.

How to Use a VPN to Lower Ping?

If ISP bottlenecks cause high ping, simply connecting to a good VPN can solve the problem.

That’s because a VPN encrypts your internet traffic, making it impossible for your ISP to view your online activities. And if your ISP can’t tell the sites you visit, it can’t impose any throttling.

If your geographic location causes your high ping, you need to connect to the VPN server closest to your game’s server. This ensures your data is sent through a more direct route and isn’t impacted by the firewall between your device and ISP DNS servers.

A VPN can also help you get better ping by connecting to less populated game servers depending on region and time of day. However, you will need to pick a good and fast VPN to achieve this.

Wrap Up

A VPN can indeed reduce your ping, especially if your internet service provider (ISP) is throttling your connection or if it provides a more direct route to gaming servers.

However, it’s important to note that a VPN won’t improve high ping issues caused by a fundamentally slow internet connection.

If you’re experiencing low ping despite having a robust internet connection, a VPN could be a valuable tool to enhance your online browsing and gaming experience by potentially providing faster and more efficient connections.

Leave a Comment