Why is my Bear slow?

When TunnelBear is on, your data has to pass through our encrypted servers. It's common for there to be a small amount of speed loss in the process.

However, if you're experiencing major slowdowns there are a few things that could be impacting your experience. Here are the primary culprits:
 
  • Geographic location - The physical distance between your current location, our servers, and the location of the website or content server. Example: You’re in Australia connecting to the Mexico tunnel and accessing a website in Japan (your bear has a fair amount of digging to do!)
 
  • Try selecting a different country - Sometimes you might find certain tunnels perform better for you than others. Generally we recommend choosing the location closest to you, so simply use our Closest Tunnel feature
 
  • Your ISP - Some ISPs throttle (slow) encrypted communications. If possible, try using a different network to see if it improves things.
 
  • Additional VPN services - Installing software from other VPN providers can alter or conflict with TunnelBear's optimal settings. Try removing or completely disabling similar software before using TunnelBear
 
  • Other third party apps - To optimize your tunneling experience make sure other apps that typically transfer large amounts of data over the network connection as disabled. Example: Cloud backup/file syncing services, unnecessary background updates



Desktop computers/laptops (Windows, Mac OS X)

Try switching Wifi networks
If you’re using a portable computer, try using a different Wifi network. If you’re using a desktop computer try switching from Wifi to a wired connection (or vice-versa)

Enable TCP override
If your ISP is throttling VPN connections or you’re connecting via an unreliable network, TCP override might help. For more information on what this feature does see this article

If you don’t see a noticeable difference we recommend disabling this feature.

GhostBear
GhostBear is designed to make TunnelBear even more resistant to internet censorship. If you’re already able to connect to TunnelBear without using this feature, turning it OFF might increase connection speed. For more info on this feature see this article.



Mobile devices (Android, iOS)

Try switching Wifi networks
Try using a different Wifi network. If possible, try switching to mobile data (LTE, 4G etc.) to see if that helps

GhostBear (Android only)
GhostBear is designed to make TunnelBear even more resistant to internet censorship. If you’re already able to connect to TunnelBear without using this feature, turning it OFF might increase connection speed. For more info on this feature see this article.