The registration process takes up about 3 seconds on my VPS. None of the other pages take this long to load.
Now I understand that it takes time to verify database entries and all, but it would be nice if there was some way to either speed up this process OR show a nice loading thingie, so people wouldn’t have to be facing a white screen….
The problem is for sure the mailing part of the process. Check why your vps is so slow. If you have a local postfix or like it should be very quick in accepting the email and the delivering it.
If you are using an external SMTP, I can suggest to change your configuration setting up in the VPS a postfix wotking as local relay to the external SMTP, so the email are enqueued locally the then delivered.