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How to fix Payday 3 matchmaking error

Fix Payday 3 matchmaking error

Another highly anticipated release, another can of worms – and the freshly baked Payday 3 isn’t an exception. From day one, many players have experienced matchmaking and server errors, preventing them from performing heists with their buddies. Worst yet, there’s no offline mode, so the chances you’ll eventually run into issues remain high.

The Payday 3 matchmaking error can occur for several reasons, and it’s not always a technical fault from Starbreeze’s side. Little things like insufficient or an overload of players, attempting to play solo, crossplay, and even a faulty internet connection can render the game unplayable. Not all hope is lost, though, as all these little hiccups have viable solutions.

We’ve found that a reliable VPN can alleviate many of these Payday 3 matchmaking errors. Rerouting your connection via optimized paths lets you bypass server errors and jump into better servers. And if your ISP was deliberately slowing you down, VPNs stop the throttling, improving your internet speed.

There are a few other fixes we recommend trying alongside it. Read on to learn more about Payday 3 matchmaking errors, the usual underlying causes, and what you can do to finally play the game.

Fix the matchmaking error in Payday 3 with a VPN

  1. Subscribe to a tried & tested VPN. We highly recommend NordVPN, now 72% off
  2. Install the VPN on your PC or router if you’re playing on console
  3. Connect to a server in a region with fewer players, like Oceania
  4. Launch Payday 3 and enjoy seamless matchmaking!

Fix the errors with NordVPN

Why are Payday 3 servers down?

As isn’t surprising for recent online titles these past few years, Payday 3 is riddled with issues. Most people aren’t happy with the broken matchmaking system. Others struggle to play the game altogether due to the servers being down. The latter is especially prevalent, and Starbreeze devs are working overtime to find the root causes and fix this.

But even with patches, Payday 3 players still experience server errors. Especially when playing in a region with an abundance of other heisters, like North America and Europe. As for matchmaking, it’s affected by several things – your internet connection, overcrowdedness (or lack of players in some cases), and even crossplay in particular instances.

Payday 3 matchmaking error

There’s not much to do if the game is temporarily down due to technical errors on Starbreeze’s side. Just check the company’s social media for updates on Payday 3 server status. But the other issues can be mitigated or completely eliminated with the help of a robust gaming VPN. This software lets you connect to another region with a better player count.

VPNs also pick a better path to send data packets to Payday 3 servers in your preferred location, improving and stabilizing your internet connection. And if the issues are caused by your ISP throttling your bandwidth, VPNs stop that by hiding your IP address and all associated online activity. The provider can’t throttle something it cannot see.

Fix Payday 3 matchmaking with NordVPN

Quickly bypass server & matchmaking errors with NordVPN. With a server network spanning the globe and the fastest speeds in the industry, you’ll be smoothly playing Payday 3 in mere minutes.

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Ways to fix Payday 3 server matchmaking error

We scoured Reddit, Steam, and various other forums, alongside some in-depth testing on our own, to gather the best methods to solve these Payday 3 errors. But since they can have multiple causes, there’s no one fix-it-all solution. You’ll likely have to try a combination of solutions or even all of them. And we highly recommend trying everything we list below.

Use a VPN

A VPN that works with Payday 3 helps solve most game errors concerning server overcrowding and matchmaking. Such software lets you connect to a different region, letting you play on that area’s game servers. In fact, many Redditors report that playing in Oceania solved this problem. Alternatively, you can connect to a timezone where it’s nighttime – much less players to overload the server.

Payday 3 VPN fix

Some heisters might also be suffering from ISP bandwidth throttling, leading to long loading and lobby waiting times and even the eventual server error. Again, reputable VPNs suitable for gaming prevent this from happening by hiding what you’re doing online. If the ISP can’t see that you’re engaging in data-intensive activities, it has no reason to slow down your internet deliberately.

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Turn off crossplay

Payday 3 has crossplay enabled by default – this setting allows matchmaking between PC and console players. However, by looking for ways to fix issues with the game, some Redditors have found that disabling crossplay solves the matchmaking error.

Payday 3 turn off crossplay

It’s most likely caused by a bug that developers are aware of by now, so it’s a matter of time until it gets patched. Still, a few players say you might have to keep turning it on and off, depending on the server you’re trying to join.

Follow these steps to disable crossplay:

  1. Boot up Payday 3
  2. Head over to the Settings menu and pick Gameplay
  3. Scroll down all the way to the bottom until you see Online
  4. Under it should be Crossplay – turn it off

Use the invitation fix

Those playing Payday 3 on Xbox via Cloud Gaming could also try the ‘invitation fix.’ Players usually invite their buddies to the party before the heist begins. With this method, you have to start the heist first and add friends during the 5-minute setup period.

Again, this is not a permanent solution. Players report that Payday 3 still ends up breaking after a while. Unfortunately, trying this fix again doesn’t work the second time.

Other methods

Of course, the problem might lie on your end as well. Additionally, we recommend the following:

  • Restart your device. Sometimes, the most obvious step is the best one to take. Shut down the game and reboot your computer or console.
  • Check your Nebula account. A Nebula account is required to play the game. If you haven’t completed the necessary authentication steps, it’s likely the cause of these issues.
  • See if Payday 3 is up to date. Starbreeze is constantly putting out patches, fixing various bugs and server errors. Ensure you’ve updated the game before playing it, as the latest patch could’ve solved some of the problems. It might even be worth reinstalling Payday 3, just in case.
  • Switch to Ethernet. An unreliable connection will cause lag and server errors. If you’re connected to Wi-Fi, switch to cable internet instead. It’s more stable and speedier than wireless connections. Or reboot your internet connection.
  • Whitelist the game. Windows Defender Firewall is known for causing issues for multiple online titles. Ensure Payday 3 is whitelisted in the firewall’s settings, or it won’t be able to connect to the official game servers. The same applies to any antivirus software you might be using.

Alternatively, there’s no harm in contacting Starbreeze’s customer support or taking a look at their support page for help. And players keep finding new ways to fix Payday 3 matchmaking errors left and right, even if it’s temporary.


The highly anticipated Payday 3 had a disastrous launch, and server and matchmaking errors still plague many players to this day. As Starbreeze is working towards solving these issues on their end, so are heisters coming up with various solutions that let them finally play the game.

As our research has shown and many gamers have noticed, you can fix Payday 3 server and matchmaking errors with the help of a few tricks and a solid VPN, we recommend NordVPN. Disabling crossplay, switching to cable internet, and even reinstalling Payday 3 can go a long way until the devs fix the technical errors causing all this.

Do you know any other ways to fix Payday 3 errors? Let us know in the comments below!

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Why do I get Payday 3 matchmaking error?

The Payday 3 matchmaking error can occur for various reasons. Usually, it happens because the game servers are down or due to server overcrowding. You’ll also get this error if the game isn’t up to date, your network is spotty, or a firewall prevents Payday 3 from establishing a connection.

What is the best way to fix Payday server error?

If a technical issue isn’t causing the server error, then using a VPN is the quickest and easiest solution to fix it. Additionally, we recommend rebooting your internet connection, reinstalling the game, and ensuring it’s whitelisted in your firewall and antivirus settings.

How to turn off Payday 3 crossplay?

You can turn off Payday 3 crossplay from the Settings menu. Go to Settings and then find Gameplay. From here, scroll to the bottom of the menu until you find the section titled ‘Online.’ Under it, there’s an option to disable crossplay – do it.

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