How to Set up a VPN on iPhone or iPad

Want to learn how to set up a VPN on iPhone or iPad?

These days, we practically do everything on our phones. From chatting with friends and shopping to banking and closing deals, we use our iPhones and iPads to get things done. But as we do these things, we send personal data out over a network that may not be secure.

If putting out your personal details online bothers you, consider using a mobile VPN on your iPhone or iPad. A VPN or Virtual Private Network routes your internet activities through a secure, encrypted connection. That prevents prying eyes from tracking your personal information and browsing habits.

Getting a mobile VPN may sound complicated. But we’re here to help. Today, we’ll guide you throughout the process. That way, your first VPN experience will be fuss-free. Here’s how to set up a VPN on iPhone or iPad.

Let’s get right to it! 

Why Do You Need to Set up a VPN on iPhone or iPad?

Before we get to the process of setting up a VPN on your iPhone or iPad, let’s expound on why you’d want to use a mobile VPN in the first place. Here are the key reasons:

set up a VPN on iPhone or iPad
  • Privacy: A VPN encrypts your device’s connection to the internet. It prevents your ISP, Google, and other websites from tracking your activities and storing your personal data. That includes your location, bank details, and more.
  • Security: With a mobile VPN, you can connect safely to the internet at cafes, airports, and other public Wi-Fi hotspots. It acts as an extra layer of security. 
  • Access: Learning to set up a VPN on iPhone or iPad allows you to get around regional blocks that stop you from accessing certain websites and videos. 

Whether you want to keep your connections private and secure or want to watch a Netflix show that isn’t available in your location, a VPN can help you.

How Should You Choose a Mobile VPN Provider?

Now you know why you need a VPN for your iPhone or iPad, the next thing to think about is how to pick the right VPN provider. There’s no shortage of options. You can even find free services online. Be wary of those free VPNs, though. They may have some limits or put up a lot of ads that can affect your browsing experience.

set up a VPN on iPhone or iPad

Here are some factors to consider when choosing a mobile VPN provider:

  • Encryption method: Good VPNs often use 256-bit encryption. Be wary of free VPNs that use a lower level of protection. Some of them even don’t use any encryption at all. After all, they’re only meant to be used for unblocking content.
  • Privacy policy: Be sure to read the privacy policies of the VPN services you’re considering. You want a service that doesn’t keep a log of your activity. That should matter, especially if you plan to use a VPN for enhanced privacy.
  • Server capacity: It pays to know the server capacity of your VPN provider. If they don’t have enough servers in your location, you may have to share bandwidth with many other users. 
  • Usage caps: Check if there’s a daily or monthly limit to your VPN usage. You’d want a service that suits your browsing and security needs.
  • Profit model: When you go for a subscription-based VPN, you know how the provider makes money. But with a free VPN, you can’t know exactly how that company makes a profit. They could put ads or sell your personal info to advertisers. That can defeat at least one purpose of setting up a VPN.

Keep these factors in mind before subscribing to a VPN. Once you signed up for a VPN, get to the next section to set up a VPN on iPhone or iPad.

How to Set up a VPN with an App?

VPN is easy to set up on Windows and Mac. But many VPN providers now also offer an easy-to-install app designed for iOS. Installing it shouldn’t be different from any other app you can download from the App Store. Still, we’ll outline a step-by-step guide to help you set up a VPN on iPhone or iPad.

iPad and iMac on a table

Here’s how to do it on your iPhone or iPad:

  1. First, create an account on your chosen VPN provider’s website.
  2. Next, download the VPN app. You can get it from the website of your VPN provider. Alternatively, you can launch App Store on your iPhone or iPad. Search for an app from your VPN provider. Download and install it. 
  3. Once you’ve installed the app, open it. Log in with the account you’ve created.
  4. On the app’s home screen, explore different options and adjust the settings. If necessary, change the server to the location you want. 
  5. After adjusting the settings, you will see a VPN icon at the top of your iPhone screen. That icon indicates that the VPN is already active on your device.

Once the VPN is active, you can start browsing websites safely. That’s even if you’re connected to public Wi-Fi. Plus, you can enjoy accessing more websites and videos.

How to Set up a VPN on iPhone or iPad Manually?

You can also do a manual setup. This option requires a bit more time and effort. But it is ideal if you want more control over your VPN experience. That includes the ability to customize your settings and select a specific protocol (iKEv2, OpenVPN, etc.).

Here’s how to set up a VPN on iPhone or iPad manually:

  1. On your device, navigate your way to Settings.
  2. Next, select General.
  3. Scroll down a bit to tap VPN.
  4. Select Add VPN Configuration.
set up a VPN on iPhone or iPad
  1. Type in the details of your VPN provider. You can find these details on your VPN provider’s website (specifically on your account page on that website). You can also customize your protocol type and other settings here.
set up a VPN on iPhone or iPad
  1. Tap Done to save all your settings.
  2. Finally, activate the VPN by turning on the toggle button next to the VPN profile you’ve created. Your VPN is active once you see the VPN icon at the top of your screen.
activated mobile VPN

This wraps up this how-to guide. Hopefully, at this point, you now enjoy your VPN experience. Got more Apple-related problems? Drop a comment below. Our team here at Saintlad will be happy to address them and offer more troubleshooting tips for you.


  • Mako Young

    Mako is a staff writer at Saint. He's been writing about tech for more than a decade. When he isn't reading about the latest news on Apple, he's busy studying cybersecurity, cryptocurrency, cloud computing, and other IT-related sectors. His exceptional work graces technology and Apple-related blogs like How-To Geek,, Macgasm, onMac, PhotoWorkout, GameRant, and many more. He also has a Bachelors in Computer Science and has been writing since 2018, with over 400 posts published. LinkedIn X (Twitter)

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