How to Get Spotify in UAE 2018

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UPDATE: On February 1st, 2018 I can confirm this solution still works. The tool I use in this guide is called ExpressVPN. Feel free to comment below, or go check it out for yourself by clicking here. I use ExpressVPN because it is the only one I've found that still currently works to get Spotify in UAE. 

To get Spotify in UAE, go through the steps below right now:

  1. First, setup a VPN account
  2. Then download and install the VPN software onto the device(s) you will listen to Spotify in UAE on
  3. Next, open the software and connect to server location where Spotify is available (e.g. US or UK)
  4. Login into your Spotify account or signup for one (if you don't have one yet)
  5. Enjoy Spotify in UAE

Total time to complete this solution: 3 minutes

spotify in uae

How to Use Spotify in UAE in more detail:

I’ll be honest, when I was first offered the chance to transfer to my company’s UAE office in Abu Dhabi, I was hesitant to say the least. I have travelled a lot, but still my knowledge of the Middle East was limited to what I had seen on the US news, and that was, to put it mildly, not 100% positive coverage.

Then my boss told me how much my salary was going to go up, and my tax bill was going to go down, and I was off down the shops to stock up on sun cream! Seriously, ex-pat life here is pretty good. There are a lot of good people working with my firm here, and there’s plenty do around the city.

But there’s still plenty I miss from back home, and at the top of my list is music. I loved going to gigs and always kept up to date with the latest releases. Music tastes here are very different, and finding my sort of stuff is hard. I had hoped that I would be able to continue to use Spotify as my go-to site for music.

But it was only when I got here that I realized you couldn’t access it here. I had a miserable, music-free couple of weeks, before a guy in my gym turned me onto VPNs, and explained how I could listen to Spotify, and other streaming services, really easily.


Why is Spotify not Available in the UAE?

I was confused at first as to why I couldn’t just log into Spotify as usual. Then I realized it was all down to rights. Spotify is a streaming service which reaches an agreement with the artists on their site over the rights to their music. They agree to pay a set for in exchange for the rights to have the music on their site.

However, these rights are not universal. Instead they are limited to agreed countries. This is because many artists have different recording contracts and record labels in different parts of the world, and sell the rights to their music off on that basis.

Spotify is therefore obliged to only make their music available in the regions where they have the rights to stream it, and must block access to this music in other parts of the world, where the rights might be held by someone else.

And to do this they use something called geo-blocking.

Many online streaming services use this method. Some examples of this include US Netflix being blocked and Gmail being blocked in China.


How is Spotify Blocking Access in the UAE?

Geo-blocking is a pretty simple piece of technology that takes advantage of your IP Address. This is a piece of data which every internet users sends to each and every website they visit. It contains various information, including where in the world you are.

Spotify will read this, and if you are not located in an area where they are allowed to stream music, they will automatically block you from using the service.

It is a pretty effective piece of technology and the only way to gain access again is to connect using a different IP Address.

Thus, what you want to do in order to bypass this block and get Spotify UAE unblocked is find a way to control your device's IP address and choose "where" you want your location to "appear" from, to the Spotify bots. 

This is where a VPN comes in, because a VPN will reroute your traffic via an external server. This means that when you visit the site, the site sees the IP Address of this server and not your device. If this server is located in the right country (the USA in my case) then Spotify should work as usual.

It might sound complicated, but actually it is a pretty simple process. If you want to know how it works, keep reading.


How to Use a VPN to get Spotify UAE Unblocked

Step 1: Sign up for VPN

So the first thing you will need to do is sign up for a VPN. My pick is ExpressVPN (check them out here: expressvpn.com) and I am using that one to illustrate how to use Spotify in UAE. Firstly, you should head on over to the ExpressVPN website by clicking one of the quick links on this page.

Once there, you can choose from one of their subscription packages. This will in turn forward you to their payment processing page.

Making a payment is really easy using a variety of internationally recognized options, and they even offer a 30-day money-back guarantee if you are not completely happy with their service.

spotify in uae 1


You have the option to choose from three different pricing plans. Regardless of which one you decide to go with, you will get that 30 day free trial period. So should the software not be effective for you (I regularly re-check this every 2 weeks to make sure it is still getting Spotify UAE unblocked - so you can rest-assured that it will work as long as this guide says it does) then you will not be wasting your money.

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Follow the simple payment steps, and once you have completed, you will then need to confirm your account by clicking the link on an email.


Step 2: Download & Install VPN

As soon as you have confirmed your account, you will be invited to download the ExpressVPN software from the menu you can see below. Click on the correct operating system for your device, and then follow the onscreen instructions to download and install the software.

I took a screenshot of just some of the devices that ExpressVPN is compatible with, which you can see is basically any and every device that connects to the internet that you would every want to get Spotify UAE unblocked on:

spotify in uae 4


So go ahead an choose the according software download option for the device you are currently using, and you will then be automatically taken through the installation process. 

This entire process will take just a few seconds from start to finish. After completing it, the VPN software will auto-launch on your device. Let it do so - the you will be ready to jump into the next step in this solution. 

Step 3: Connect to US-based Server on VPN

After the installation has completed, the software will open and you will be greeted by the very user friendly ExpressVPN interface. All that is left for you to do is choose which of their servers you want to connect to. 

This is "magic" part of this solution, as it is at this point that you will actually change your IP address and make your device "appear" from within whichever location you want (in this instance, anywhere outside of the UAE).

So for me, I downloaded the Macbook compatible software, launched it, then connected to a New York-based server location.

Here is a little image of how the software looks on my Macbook before I connect to a server located in NYC:

spotify in uae 5


ExpressVPN offer a variety of different servers spotted all around the world, so choose any one (it doesn’t matter which, so long as it the location is not also blocked from accessing Spotify like the UAE is). It will then take a few moments to establish a connection.

For further demonstration of how to do this, check out the screenshots below of me connecting to the ExpressVPN Android software that I got by simply downloading and installing it though the Google Play Store.

As you can see, I chose on this occasion to connect to a UK (London) based server:

spotify in uae 6
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After you have connected to the VPN on a non-UAE server - congratulation! You will have just successfully changed your device's IP address.

Of course, should you want to change your IP address to another location, then it is as simple as disconnecting from your current connection then connecting to any other one offered by the software. 

Completely disconnecting from the VPN is simple. You can disconnect in the software, or just close the entire software and you will be disconnected. Your IP will then return to it's correct status when you do this. 


Step 4: Setup Spotify Account

And with that your VPN is set up. All that is left is for you to log onto your Spotify account and your world of music is available to you again.

If you don’t have an existing Spotify account, you can also visit their website to set one up. You can setup a free account with no problems at all, and if you want a premium account, you can set this up by using your Facebook account. The onsite instructions are pretty easy to follow, and it shouldn’t take you more than five or ten minutes to get going.


Conclusion

As long as you follow the steps above correctly, the world of Spotify will be yours to enjoy in the UAE as much or as little as you like. I use it almost all the time, so it was a Godsend for me.

Do leave me a comment below to let me know how this process works for you, if indeed if you have any questions.

To be clear, although I cannot stress enough to use a VPN for this solution - you do have another viable option that I am confident in suggestion, which is to use a SmartDNS service to get Spotify UAE accessible. 

This works much in the same as a VPN, but without any of the encryption being placed on your online data and activity (which is what you do get, to a very high level, with a VPN). 

Why I recommend using a VPN is because protection of one's own online privacy is something I think everyone should take as much control of as possible. Also, the pricing difference between using a secure and effective SmartDNS service against a VPN is so slight that it just makes sense to go with a VPN. 

The other option that some people consider as effective is to use a Proxy browser. I have tried this multiple times to no success at all. These are using free websites that you browse the web through, however since they are free - most of them are blocked by the very service you are trying to access and never updated. 

I have used ExpressVPN because I feel it is the best VPN provider for online streaming. There are of course other VPNs if you don’t like the look of ExpressVPN, and above you will find my pick of the top 5 for getting Spotify UAE unblocked.

Happy listening, music lovers!

Summary
Article Name
How to Get Spotify in UAE 2018
Description
Spotify blocked in UAE? Use this quick guide to unblock and get Spotify in UAE.
Author
Chris Beattie

37 Answers

  1. Emma
    August 6, 2016 at 7:51 am

    Hi there

    I followed your instructions but no matter what country I connect to through expressvpn, whenever I try and download spotify onto my new Samsung S7 it says it is not available in my country.

    Any other advice/suggestions as to how to get spotify on my phone?

    Thanks in advance
    Emma

    1. Chris Beattie
      August 8, 2016 at 7:22 am

      Hi Emma, thanks for your comment and query. Your issue is a common one unfortunately! Luckily there is a fix. You simply need to go a bit “deeper” with your Google Play Store settings (since I assume this is where you are attempting to download Spotify onto your smartphone with?). This guide should pay out the steps for you to take to do this, and get Spotify working on your phone; https://fried.com/guides/how-to-change-google-play-store-country/ 🙂

      Thanks again, Emma!

    1. Chris Beattie
      September 2, 2016 at 7:12 am

      Hi Jazz, thanks for your comment. A new law has passed that *claims* the use of a VPN within the UAE to be illegal. However, the actual law that was passed DOES NOT mean using a VPN is illegal. To be specific — using a VPN to access online services like Spotify goes against Spotify’s terms and conditions. This is not illegal, and millions of people all over the world access Spotify, Netflix, Hulu, and many other services in this fashion. If your VPN is somehow detected by the service, nothing will happen to you legally. The service will just block you from accessing it. That’s it. Definitely not a huge punishment nor scary illegal activity that the UAE wants you to believe is the case.

      Happy streaming, Jazz! 🙂

  2. Richard
    September 19, 2016 at 10:19 pm

    They clarified the “law” but basically it says that VPN use IS legal, however to use it to circumvent rights management like watching TV or listening to Internet Radio that normally isn’t available in UAE IS illegal, so basically you can have your VPN but just don’t use it for anything that is useful.

    I do find that Apple Music is okay and works without a VPN here as long as you are using a U.S. Apple Store Account, not sure about one based in UAE.

    By the way, the different VPN’s I’ve used on my Iphone before no longer work here. They found some way to block them apparently. The software based one on my home computers still work though.

    1. Chris Beattie
      June 29, 2017 at 4:22 am

      Hey Berry, thanks for your question! After you download the VPN you do need to actually connect to a server on it. So go ahead and open it up, then choose which location (that’s the server) you want to connect to. Click “Connect” and then you’re good to go!

  3. Alex
    August 28, 2017 at 12:15 am

    Hi I found your blog super helpful , but since I am completely new on this VPN thing I have questions,

    Can you use the same VPN on all your devices, what I mean is, can I have only one account and connect on my phone, my laptop and my tablet with the same VPN.

    If I am connecting to a outside server that means all my operations are done then in that server ?

    I am sorry it might sound silly, but I got so used to Spotify.

    Thank you

    1. Chris Beattie
      August 28, 2017 at 4:00 am

      Hey Alex, thanks for your question — it’s a common one! Yes, you only need the one VPN account to have the VPN working and connected across multiple devices (like your laptop, computer and smartphone simultaneously for example). When you connect to a server on the VPN, all of your internet activity is going through that service, rather than the public, local server you would otherwise be connecting through (which commonly tracks your data/activity and does not protect your privacy at all). You don’t sound silly at all — I can’t live without my Spotify account around the world 🙂

  4. Shaz
    September 21, 2017 at 11:59 am

    Hi

    I followed all the instructions you mentioned, however, I still can’t log into my Spotify account. I used to live in the uk and only recently moved to uae. I cancelled my subscription few days ago and only today spotify logged me out of my spotify and I can no longer log back in 🙁 I tried everything.
    please help!

    Thank you

    1. Chris Beattie
      October 4, 2017 at 5:30 am

      Hey Shaz, so sorry to hear you’re having issues with this. You say you cancelled your subscription, but kept your account open yes? I have not encountered this problem before, and sounds like something that Spotify support should help you with. The VPN will definitely be giving you access to the service, so it won’t be the VPN that’s the issue here. It’s worth uninstalling then reinstalling the Spotify app on your device (and if you’re using it in the browser, that you have cleared your browser cache completely?) as both of these may cause Spotify to work a little strangely with your VPN. Good luck, Shaz!

  5. Ammar
    October 13, 2017 at 9:35 am

    Hello there,
    I downloaded SPOTIFY and all is working fine, tho I’m an intensive listener and like to download my music to listen to it wherever I go without the need to use internet/data
    I am a UAE resident and have no payment method registered outside of this country.
    The question is, how can I pay for Spotify premium while I’m in the UAE without a payment method registered outside uae, any online payment methods (I tried PayPal, no luck to get it work tho)
    Ps. My Spotify account is U.S. Registered, had to go into a long process to make it work but it’s working. I want premium still.

    Thanks 🙂

  6. Erika
    October 26, 2017 at 10:17 pm

    Love your article! It’s great and very helpful! Gratitude! I have one question: How can I download Spotify on my Apple store in the UAE? I can’t find it there at all… 🙁
    I’d love to have Spotify on my iPhone…

    Thanks a million!

  7. Melissa R.
    January 10, 2018 at 1:40 am

    I have heard so much about this ” GEO BLOCKING” What it is exactly is unclear to me. Is that a worldwide standard system used for streaming? Anyway, I feel bad for the people that will not be able to enjoy spotify​ ​UAE because of it.

  8. Paul
    January 10, 2018 at 2:35 am

    The way I see is placing restriction on spotify​ ​in​ ​UAE is a bit uncalled for. For one, I doubt people there even know what it is. So it is counter productive in my opinion.

  9. Dale Young
    January 10, 2018 at 3:28 am

    So the blocking parade continues lol. Thankfully, Chris is here for an alternative on how​ ​to​ ​use​ ​spotify​ ​is​ ​UAE at least for the moment that is. Hopefully it holds up for a long time.

  10. David S.
    January 10, 2018 at 3:47 am

    Another reason why I love VPN. It does not only shield your computers but more importantly it can bridge the gap between shows and makes it available for everybody.

  11. Anne De Mayo
    January 10, 2018 at 5:44 am

    Well at least UAE is improving hell other countries particularly third world ones do not even have these platforms. If you ask me this is like planting seeds and it starts with UAE.

  12. Sally K.
    January 10, 2018 at 6:02 am

    As someone who does not use Spotify I will be honest here I do not care. For me it is just for those people who cannot wait for the official release. I have nothing against it but to me it is just a necessity.

  13. Dymon West
    January 10, 2018 at 7:21 am

    I am not in UAE but I understand why people are going into a third part software with all this blocking all over the place. Even I have in my own system. Not as grand as this one but its okay.

  14. Vaughn
    January 10, 2018 at 8:38 am

    The way I see it spotify​ ​UAE is a blessing for the country too bad it is blocked but this software comes to its rescue not just for this platform but for other venues as well.

  15. Lynd P.
    January 10, 2018 at 9:03 am

    2018 and spotify​ ​in​ ​UAE still blocked. Hopefully this solution provided by the Author will address it. Writing and experiencing it is vastly different. I hope people from here share their story about this. It will solidify the device’s claim even more.

  16. Michelle Gibbs
    January 10, 2018 at 9:26 am

    I am on the other side of the world at the moment so knowing how​ ​to​ ​use​ ​spotify​ ​is​ ​UAE is not a priority. However, I may hold on to this info. Perhaps this may come in handy.

  17. Jenn H.
    January 10, 2018 at 9:34 pm

    I heard reports that VPN at least usage of it is illegal in these parts. I do not know the truth of it but its unlikely. Otherwise this article will not even exist with all these details.

  18. Z. Mitchell
    January 10, 2018 at 9:57 pm

    Spotify the way I see it is an your typical online global music store, hence it is not surprising to see spotify​ ​in​ ​UAE. However, it is kinda sad that it is blocked. This alternative serves as a good choice but what about those who does not have a dime in there pockets? This is why I prefer Itunes. At least they allow you to listen to songs even if you cannot download it.

  19. Tracy Nohra
    January 10, 2018 at 10:17 pm

    the only thing that is bugging me is the fact that spotify​ ​UAE allowed this neo to block their service on a country that is literally not that aware of mainstream music in my opinion. I understand somewhat parts of progressive countries but UAE? I mean a country that I recall is a part of Arabian Nations meaning they are already strict as it is. It is not like American culture can penetrate these parts. I mean even girls are like ninjas in there ha ha. Seriously people.

  20. Raymund Dunn
    January 10, 2018 at 11:17 pm

    This ladies in gentlemen is how​ ​to​ ​use​ ​spotify​ ​is​ ​UAE. I wonder if other countries third world ones have SPOTIFY? If it has then perhaps this will come in handy not just for UAE but for those unlucky states struck by this neo blocking stuff.

  21. Bray
    January 10, 2018 at 11:46 pm

    Well VPN has surely growing fast and steady over the years and will continue to do so years to come. Whether it is express or whatever brand VPN is a must these days.

  22. Bray
    January 10, 2018 at 11:54 pm

    If this system will make it possible to where it can make my apple and my amazon evolve that can​ ​I​ ​watch​ ​amazon​ ​prime​ ​on​ ​apple​ ​TV? give or take then I am all for it. Two for the price of one a sweet deal if I say so myself.

  23. E.M Pavela
    January 11, 2018 at 12:03 am

    The neo blocking sure is a pain the rear, If not for software like these then UE has been left in the dust. They do not mind of course since mainstream rarely reaches these parts.

  24. Merlinda James
    January 11, 2018 at 12:46 am

    from the looks of it this system can be the next big thing. I mean its potential to be unlocked. TV now the next day who knows banks will use it too.

  25. Sunshine J.
    January 11, 2018 at 12:58 am

    I am a big fan of Spotify. Even bought a number of songs there. I have not visited back however due to im busy but these days I may come back.

  26. Kassie
    January 11, 2018 at 1:13 am

    Well aside from UE what other states are block by spotify? They are loosing potential if you ask me, Blocking has a bad side as well. This is why people are drawn to third party software. Well another loose is someones gain.

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