Is Facebook blocked in China? YES.
There’s pretty much nothing worse than getting to Beijing, Shanghai (or anywhere in China) and realizing all your favorite websites are blocked. Sure, you don’t travel to spend all your time online, but just about everyone is used to checking in briefly at least on the news, social medias, etc. From a non-Chinese perspective, a good portion of the most-used sites are blocked when you are on a normal wireless or data connection in mainland China. For example, The New York Times, Gmail, Youtube, Instagram & Facebook are all currently blocked.
If you’d like to check a specific website to see if it’s blocked in cities like Beijing, Shanghai or others, you can use one of the following services, which will let you know in real-time if you’ll need a VPN to access the site while you’re traveling in China.
So your favorite website is blocked? If you’d like to use that site while you’re in China, you’re going to need to purchase, set-up and install a VPN on every device (phone/tablet/computer) that you’d like to browse on.
What’s a VPN? Essentially, it’s a piece of software or app that hides your IP address and routes it to another country, making the blocked sites accessible. There are some free ones, but the stable ones seem to change so quickly that we don’t recommend relying on them.
VPN Service: We recommend Astrill or ExpressVPN for your computer & phone to gain access to blocked sites like Gmail, Youtube, Instagram & Facebook while in China. You can purchase one month plans for ~$10. REMEMBER to set it up before you arrive in China, or you will most likely run into download issues.
Still planning out your trip in Beijing or Shanghai? Check out our travel resources page, and let us know if you have any questions or if you’d like to book a food tour adventure. We have tours every day of the week and are top-rated on TripAdvisor.