The internet is an endless ocean of information, and browsing it without a VPN is like taking a swim without a life jacket.
Privacy is the number one concern for most people, but unfortunately, our online activity is not as private and secretive as we think it is.
Data is probably the most valuable thing nowadays, which is why a lot of companies will try to get their hands on yours. However, innovators came up with a solution that greatly increases your privacy and safety while browsing the net.
Configuring a VPN is easy but making a good choice purchase-wise is quite the opposite.
There are so many products available on the market, in which case, choosing the best VPN might be a bit overwhelming, especially for those who are new to the world of virtual private networks.
This guide will take care of that issue for you.
We feature the 20 best VPN services for 2021 below.
ExpressVPN is considered the sure-shot in the world of virtual private networks, with good reason! Even its slogan proudly states, “The VPN that just works,” further illustrating this product’s fantastic simplicity and effectiveness.
Just like every other software out there, ExpressVPN has its strengths and weaknesses. However, in this case, the pros seem to be outperforming the cons.
Many other VPN reviews are sharing the same opinion on ExpressVPN. It is very effective and easy to use, but all that comes with a price. It’s definitely not cheap, yet the company offers you access to a large fleet of servers, ensuring great service and many varied options for the price you pay.
The company also uses a few virtual servers, which is not something that many people are happy with. However, this is only the case with less than three percent of ExpressVPN’s servers, and there’s also a good reason behind all this.
To put it plainly, it ensures better connection performance for the user.
If you want an entry-level VPN and something that can help you understand the concept before you start using top VPN services, there are probably cheaper solutions out there.
Nevertheless, there are only positive things to say about ExpressVPN in terms of quality. Some people may consider the price to be a bit on the higher side, but you do get what you pay for!
Price: $14.26/mo. or $53.49/yr.
Locations: 112 in 90 countries
Devices: up to 7
As soon as you access CyberGhost’s website, there’s a section in the header that helps you understand how vulnerable you are without a VPN. Your physical location, IP address, and even internet provider are all listed. Obviously, it’s for commercial reasons, but it’s definitely a true eye-opener.
If a legitimate company can easily dig up this information simply by you visiting its website, imagine what someone with malicious intent can do with that information, and much more.
CyberGhost strives to solve this issue for you, if you decide to make them your VPN of choice.
We recommend looking further into this product because of the safety it provides when engaging in online activities such as torrenting and streaming. CyberGhost is a very safe VPN that offers a lot of functionality as well. It was definitely built for the best possible user experience.
As for the technicalities, CyberGhost offers more than 6800 servers, Wi-Fi protection features, dedicated streaming servers, and a no-logs policy.
If you don’t like some of its features, you can always leave feedback that will help improve CyberGhost VPN. This is greatly encouraged by the developers on its website. You also get a money-back guarantee depending on the payment plan you chose.
Price: $11.35/mo. or $56.05/yr.
Locations: 5400+ servers across 59 countries
Devices: up to 6
NordVPN is one of the most well-known VPNs out there, and it’s an overall great product for your money. This VPN is not very expensive, and it has all the functionalities an average internet user needs.
The company promises lightning-fast speed when using its VPN services, so you shouldn’t worry about performance, even if you are a more “active” user.
Online streaming and downloading are flawless with Nord. On top of this, you also get unlimited bandwidth, so feel free to use it as you wish.
By having only one active subscription, you can use NordVPN on your phone with one-click next-generation encryption. Connecting multiple devices is really easy as well. This makes the product a nice choice if you want maximum security for your entire family.
A lot of internet celebrities use NordVPN, which in itself is a great endorsement! But what really leaves a nice impression is the proof the company has on its website. For example, PewDiePie is an internet star who very openly talked about his regular NordVPN usage on all of his devices.
On the company’s website, there’s a section called “But don’t just take our word for it,” and it features original tweets, tech reviews, video proof, and awards, all documenting the efficiency and trustworthiness of this product. So, don’t just take our word for it, see for yourself.
That being said, showcasing the weaknesses of the product is equally as important as mentioning the strengths. Users deserve total transparency when paying for a service, especially one that promises privacy and security on the internet.
One of NordVPN’s servers got breached back in March 2018. The server was located in Finland, and although it didn’t contain any usernames or passwords, it had quite a lot of browsing activity and data stored on it.
According to Tom Okman, one of Nord’s tech advisory board members, the hacker could only see what websites the users browsed, and only those users located in the small region where the breach happened. In addition, the content Nord’s users browsed remains supposedly anonymous and protected.
Although this happened back in 2018, it still needs to be taken into consideration. Needless to say, the company likely used this mistake to improve and enhance its security systems even more since the unfortunate event.
4. PIA (Private Internet Access)
Price: $11.04/mo. or $46.57/yr.
Locations: 35600+ servers in 100 locations across 77 countries
Devices: up to 10
PIA (Private Internet Access) is another good, well-known product that’s a bit more in line with the “affordable and beginner-friendly” category. It’s a solid choice for those trying to add a cost-efficient layer of protection for internet browsing and light activity.
PIA VPN can be used on up to ten different devices with just one active subscription, which is really on the affordable side. Perfect for students or “light” internet users. If you require a VPN for Netflix, you’ve made the right choice.
This VPN is good for torrenting, and it has one great feature, the automatic kill-switch. This ensures your P2P activity remains safe even if your connections with the VPN suddenly stops. Combined with the user-friendly interface, this product is generally straightforward and easy to use. If you are an advanced user, you’ll also like the port-forwarding feature.
The company has a solid fleet of servers, meaning you won’t have to sacrifice any of that performance when browsing the internet with its product. Boasting 100 locations across 77 countries means a lot of room for spoofing! PIA also has a no-logs policy which is one of the most sought-after things today.
It’s good to know that there’s one possible downside of PIA’s VPN. The lack of split tunneling. This means you can’t be connected to both a private and a public network at the same time. As a result of this, all of your data will have to travel through an encrypted VPN tunnel, leaving you with much higher bandwidth usage.
Also, some users reported slow response times from the customer support team, so keep this in mind before purchasing if you are a user who often relies on this feature.
Price: $12.95/mo. or $59.76/yr.
Locations: 3200+ servers across 65 countries
Devices: as many as you want
Although we live in a profit-driven world, Surfshark bucks the trend. It’s an amazing VPN that allows you to connect as many devices as you want to your account with just one subscription! If that wasn’t enough, the subscription cost itself isn’t expensive!
The motto of Surfshark is “Secure your digital life” and its product does exactly that.
If you want to try Surfshark, there are free trials available on its website. If you end up liking its service, subscribing to get premium features and a long-term plan is straightforward as well.
In case you end up regretting your purchase, there’s no room to feel bad about it since Surfshark offers a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Surfshark is easy to implement in your daily browsing experience. Both Chrome and Firefox extensions are available for PC users! And, if you browse the internet mostly through your smartphone, you’re well taken care of! Surfshark is also available for Android and iOS!
Last but not least, Surfshark operates under the jurisdiction of the British Virgin Islands, which is a great location for a company with a stringent no-logs policy. Surfshark also went through an independent security audit that they managed to complete without any security risks being raised. Feel free to get informed on this here.
As for the potential downsides, there are few to cite. Of course, the company is relatively new (founded in 2018), but this hasn’t been a growth-limiting factor so far.
Some users may experience poor performance from Surfshark’s P2P servers. But rest assured, you can always test this out yourself and get your money back if you didn’t get what was promised to you on the website.
Price: $9.51/mo. or $114.16/yr.
Locations: 1237 servers across 55 countries
Devices: up to 10 depending on plan
ProtonVPN is good for a lot of reasons. Firstly, it offers a lot of flexibility payment-wise, and on top of that, you get a free version of the product too.
Although the free version offers 1 connection and three servers with medium speed, it’s still beneficial if you want to get a taste of how the product performs.
The free version also includes a strict no-logs policy, which indicates this company’s seriousness regarding protecting its users and valuing its privacy.
Now moving over to the paid plans, the “Plus” plan offers many features for a price that’s relatively high but well worth it. For example, this plan includes up to 5 VPN connections, servers across 55 countries, an Adblocker, an option to re-route your traffic through the Tor network with just a single click, P2P support, accessing region-blocked content, and a high speed of 10Gbps.
ProtonVPN is based in Switzerland, one of the countries well-known for its strong privacy laws. Although Proton isn’t a company with the largest number of servers, its product is really solid and widely used.
If you want to take your experience to the next level and purchase ProtonVPN for all your family members or employers, its “Visionary” package allows up to 10 connections and a ProtonMail Visionary account, an encrypted e-mail service used by millions.
A possible downside is its somewhat frequent VPN Block. Due to the popularity and “aggressiveness” of this VPN to protect your data and identity, it is often recognized by servers. But, of course, there’s not really a VPN that can work with a 100% success rate.
ProtonVPN is definitely on many people’s list of good VPNs.
7. Mullvad VPN
Price: $5.95/mo. or $71.4/yr.
Locations: 60 across 36 countries
Devices: up to 5
Mullvad is a VPN service with a really fair pricing model. No matter what plan you choose, it’s $5.95 per month, and you can cancel at any time or get your money back in the first 30 days if you don’t like the product.
For the price you’re paying, Mullvad offers a lot of great options. This VPN is affordable and is already well-developed as it supports 60 locations across 36 different countries and more than 700 servers available.
These numbers are not as impressive as some of the other VPNs on this list, but choosing a smaller provider as your VPN has advantages. Servers are not very busy, and fewer users mean that receiving help from the customer support team is far more efficient and straightforward.
On top of all this, the company promises its price will never change! It was the same in 2009, and it’s still the same one today—a pretty solid deal.
Last but not least, the company accepts cryptocurrency as a payment method with a 10% discount. According to Mullvad, they don’t have a “free plan” because the company believes there is no real “free” plan that doesn’t make you pay in some way later on. This type of transparency is appreciated.
8. IPVanish VPN
Price: $9.99/mo. or $89.99/yr.
Locations: 1600+ servers across 75+ countries
Devices: as many as you like
IPVanish isn’t the cheapest VPN you can find but it does offer some sweet functionality.
First, the company offers more than 1600+ servers spread across 75+ countries, which means many options no matter where you are located.
Second, these servers perform as promised, so if you are an “active” internet user and want a pretty fast and secure connection, IPVanish VPN will take care of that.
You also get a Kill Switch and a very easy-to-follow data monitor inside the app itself. It shows time connected, server, data upload, and download, as well as the best available locations.
The user interface may not be the prettiest, but for those seeking great functionality rather than a perfectly designed UI, IPVanish is a great solution! You can also enable a feature that allows you to pick a location based on a map instead of a list to make things easier for you.
Compared to other VPN providers, IPVanish showed pretty good results with apps such as Netflix, surpassing the geo-block with ease while remaining undetectable by the servers.
Finally, there are no browser extensions, but you can install the app on other devices such as an Android smartphone, iOS devices, Linux, macOS, and Chromebooks. All this is supported by carefully written instructions on the company’s website, which is great for those planning to use a VPN for the first time.
Price: $10/mo. or $100/yr.
Locations: 37 servers in 22 cities across 13 countries
Devices: up to 7 with Pro plan
IVPN continues to keep gaining the attention of those looking to take their online security to the next level- and rightly so! The reason for this is the company’s no-logs and anonymous registration policy.
While most other VPNs require your email address for registration, IVPN has a very interesting “generate your account” feature that allows you to become a service user without an email address.
If you want to take anonymity and privacy even further, paying with cryptocurrency or cash is also an option.
IVPN is not the largest VPN provider in the world, but they do an excellent job of keeping you secure and under the radar while using the internet.
The company is also very transparent about its advertising and affiliate programs, which they don’t have- and it’s easy to see why they’re admired for that. IVPN is a product that speaks for itself, which is why you won’t find it on pay-to-play marketing lists.
In terms of features, IVPN has quite a lot to offer. AntiTracker, Killswitch and Firewall, Pause VPN, Port forwarding, Multi-hop routes, and many more. For the amount of money you pay, this is considered the best VPN service you can get in that particular range.
10. Hotspot Shield
Price: $12.99/mo. or $95.88/yr.
Locations: 1800+ servers in 35+ cities across 80 countries
Devices: up to 5
Hotspot Shield is one of the best paid-for VPN services for those requiring ultra-fast servers. On the company’s website, you can see that they openly advertise as the world’s fastest VPN. However, this is not only its own opinion about the product.
Techradar, CNET, and PCMag are all reputable brands that share the same opinion about Hotspot Shield, with PCMag openly stating that this VPN is by far the fastest one they’ve ever used.
Hotspot Shield is available on Windows, Android, iOS, Mac, and as an extension for Google Chrome.
Hotspot Shield offers military-grade encryption, and the company promises protection from more than 57 million types of malware and phishing sites when using its product. In addition, their VPN supposedly increases your Wi-Fi performance, with some users reporting an increase of 26%+ in speed.
All this comes with a 45-day money-back guarantee and a 24/7 live tech support.
If you are looking to try this product before paying for it, you can use its free version, but please keep in mind it comes with a few limitations, such as a maximum of 500MB traffic.
Price: $9.00/mo. or $49.00/yr.
Locations: 500+ servers in 110 cities across 63+ countries
Devices: up to 5
Windscribe has a lot of functionality, and although many users believe it’s way too cheap to be good, third-party tests reveal that this VPN performs as stated.
Firstly, Windscribe has good server speed. Of course, these are not the highest speeds, but they are by no means slow.
Next, this VPN has way too many features to offer, which is great for newer and more experienced users.
For example, Flexible Connectivity and Proxy Gateway will benefit those with more experience. At the same time, their Firewall feature, along with Time Warp, Ad Blocking, Cookie Monster, Split Personality, and Double Hopping, will ensure every user has a good experience using this product.
Windscribe is very user-friendly, and it conveniently allows you to customize your own pricing plan. So if you don’t want to pay a lot to utilize basic VPN features, Windscribe is perfect. Especially if you are a student or simply on a budget.
The free version of Windscribe allows a 10GB monthly data limit, which is much higher than some other companies.
Overall, a solid VPN option for those looking to increase their safety and hide their online activity without breaking their bank.
Keep in mind that some users may be unable to access Hulu or Netflix when using Windscribe, so if you are looking for a VPN to use specifically for this reason, there may be other, better options available.
Price: $3.33/mo. or $39.96/yr.
Locations: 3000+ servers across 34+ countries
Devices: up to 5
TunnelBear has to be one of the most well-known VPNs, and there are many reasons for this.
First, TunnelBear has a unique mascot, a lovely brown bear that makes a signature sound each time you “tunnel” somewhere with their VPN service.
In addition, TunnelBear has a free version with up to 500MB of monthly traffic, which is heavily used by many users worldwide to bypass geo-blocks. So whether it’s accessing Spotify or getting better prices for plane tickets, TunnelBear helps a lot people.
TunnelBear’s plans are structured so well that most of its free users quickly transition to the “unlimited” plan after their first month of usage.
There’s just nothing unattractive about this product, and it’s very affordable as well. The interface, especially on mobile devices, is ultra-clean and fun to use and never really requires more than five clicks for you to “tunnel” to another country.
Try the free version and see for yourself. If you end up liking it, the unlimited version allows you to connect up to five devices and get unlimited secure browsing. This also comes with priority customer service.
Price: $6.47/mo. or $77/yr.
Locations: 700+ servers in 73 locations across 64 countries
Devices: up to 5
VyprVPN is known for being one of the cheapest options available on the market. However, this doesn’t mean they aren’t offering a quality service.
700+ servers in 73 locations spread across 64 countries will offer many options for you as a user. You can browse the internet as a local in all of those countries. However, the features this product offers are what make it so interesting.
VyprVPN’s team of developers came up with a great technology called “Chameleon,” a VPN protocol for bypassing restrictive networks in any country. Chameleon expertly allows you to disguise yourself and prevent being recognized by Deep Packet Inspection (DPI). In short, this prevents VPN blocking. But that’s not all.
VyprDNS protects you from man-in-the-middle attacks, and VyprVPN Cloud is its user-friendly VPN server-deployment solution. This feature should increase your security when accessing your cloud servers, and it’s working great so far.
Lastly, you’ll be happy to hear that VyprVPN has a no-logs policy. Their VPN also offers a handy Kill Switch function to protect you if your connection to the VPN service breaks.
Price: $10.00/mo. or $79.99/yr.
Locations: 950+ servers in 59 cities across 35 countries
Devices: up to 12
If you are looking for a good user-friendly VPN that allows you to protect all of your devices with just one subscription, StrongVPN should be your pick.
StrongVPN is really considered affordable for what you’re getting for your money compared to some of their competitors.
Up to 12 devices with just one subscription is an exciting selling point, making this a great choice for your entire family. In addition, there are often a lot of discounts on their website, so you may even end up saving money.
StrongVPN offer a decent amount of servers spread across a good number of locations.
What people like the most about this product is the fact there are no tiers offering different features. Every plan includes the same features. You just choose how long it’s going to last. Simplicity is always welcomed.
In terms of features, StrongVPN offers its StrongDNS technology, no-logging policy, no speed limits, WireGuard, L2TP, SSTP, OpenVPN, IPSec and IKEv2 protocols, “Best available Location” feature, and a lot more.
You’re also given peace of mind because if you end up paying yet, you aren’t totally happy; StrongVPN’s annual plan offers a great 30-day money-back guarantee!
15. HMA VPN
Price: $4.99/mo. or $59.88/yr.
Locations: 290+ across 190+ countries
Devices: up to 5
HMA VPN is one of the world’s largest VPN companies, which is easily confirmed by its enormous number of servers and locations. Furthermore, they have recently rebranded.
Currently, HMA offers more than 1100+ servers spread across 290+ locations in more than 190 countries. According to their statement, this is more than any other VPN provider.
HMA’s long-term experience in the market is clearly recognized by their professional and honest approach to everything they do.
It’s rare to see a successful company leaving all the reviews on their website regardless of the final user verdict. When a brand isn’t afraid to show its weak sides or the experiences of some of its dissatisfied customers, it means they are quite trustworthy.
HMA’s VPN is available on PC (Windows), Mac, Android, iPhone, and Linux. Their product boasts 20 Gbps connection speeds and P2P connections. Other great features include split-tunneling, kill switch, and a whole lot more!
Overall, HMA is a good VPN that is somewhere in between affordable and expensive. So, if you don’t care about the price, definitely set your eyes on this VPN.
16. Bitdefender Premium VPN
Price: $7.13/mo. or $59.49/yr.
Locations: 1300+ servers across 30 countries
Devices: up to 10
You may recognize the “Bitdefender” name from this company’s prevalent anti-virus software that has been around on the market for a very long time.
Their website displays some useful information on why you should consider investing in a VPN. They also display the system requirements you need to meet if you want to use this product.
Bitdefender Premium VPN is available on Windows, macOS, iOS and all Android devices as well.
According to its website, Bitdefender Premium VPN was created by an award-winning security provider, and it offers a high-speed connection through 1300+ servers in over thirty countries.
The user interface is friendly and easy to use across all devices, and their features are working as promised. There’s a really cool setting that you can tick in the Windows app, which allows you to automatically connect when you load up a P2P app.
It’s important to note that there is a lack of “stealth” when accessing Disney+, iPlayer, and Amazon as the VPN itself gets detected by the servers. In addition, their Windows app is perhaps not as polished as some users would like. Although, many people won’t mind that.
Overall, a good choice.
17. Perfect Privacy
Price: $12.99/mo. or $119.99/yr.
Locations: 58 across 25 countries
Devices: as many as you want
It’s not the most popular VPN, but it’s definitely getting some attention lately.
Perfect Privacy seems to be a company that doesn’t focus too heavily on flashy offers and advertising. But you get what you paid for when you purchase their product.
It’s not the most affordable VPN, that’s for sure. Still, it comes packed with many polished features and a user-friendly experience.
Multi-Hop, NeuroRouting, TrackStop, StealthVPN, and Killswitch are some of the features you get with all of Perfect Privacy VPN’s plans. They make you much safer on the internet, and thanks to its Stealth VPN feature, your requests won’t be blocked by websites when you’re trying to access them.
Perfect Privacy VPN is a good company that operates under the excellent no-logs policy, which means that none of your browsing data or activity is stored. Furthermore, the company has reassured customers that even if they wanted to record the data, its server infrastructure is expertly built in a way that prevents them.
All of the features that come with its package are carefully explained on the official website. So, if you are a beginner and you want to know exactly what you’re paying for, head on over and inform yourself!
Perfect Privacy VPN allows more than 60 payment methods, and as always, it’s a huge plus to see that a company accepts cryptocurrency as an option. So if you want to stay completely anonymous, you can pay with Bitcoin.
Price: $9.95/mo. or $44.00/yr.
Locations: 3455+ servers in 100+ locations worldwide
Devices: up to 5
Ivacy is a fairly well-rated VPN that comes packed with a nice price plan and some advantageous features.
The one thing users seem to really like about it is that the company is based in Singapore, which means that they won’t ever be forced to share their customers’ data with the government.
Additionally, Ivacy is a solid product with no previously-known issues, breaches, or other similar reports.
Their widely distributed servers allow you to choose your most optimal location for the best possible user experience and speed when browsing the internet.
Price-wise it’s one of the best options available, and the company has a rigorous no-logging policy that encourages users to pay for this product.
As far as registering privacy goes, it’s not the best choice out there, as you still have to insert your name, email address, and payment method, but this is the case with many other VPNs as well. An exception is IVPN which uses a totally different system and is much better in this field.
A possible downside is that Ivacy offers only one protocol which is IKEv1, and according to security experts, this is not the best one in terms of security.
Ivacy can access Netflix without a problem and other similar apps with geo-based restrictions, such as Spotify and Hulu.
19. VPN Unlimited
Price: $9.99/mo. or $59.99/yr.
Locations: 500+ servers in 80+ different locations
Devices: up to 5
VPN Unlimited is another affordable VPN with a zero-log policy and a thirty-day money-back guarantee if you don’t like what you paid for.
One great thing about VPN Unlimited is its simple pricing plan and an option that not many VPN providers have, which is their Unlimited One-Time-Payment Plan.
This plan allows you to pay just once for a premium lifetime subscription, and it costs $199.99, making it a really fair deal.
In terms of the technical aspect, VPN Unlimited offers an AES-256 Encryption, a selection of VPN Protocols, and a Rock-Solid DNS Firewall. You can read more about each one of these features separately in the company’s official features section.
If you are worried about someone breaching into your VPN Unlimited account, you can easily set up its 2FA-Authentication system. But that’s not all.
VPN Unlimited allows you to set your own static IP Address, as well as configure a personal VPN server. Kill Switch and Run on Startup are two other available features that will help you remain protected at all times.
In the app, you can mark favorite servers to keep them on top of your list. Other customization features add to this app’s convenience and user-friendliness factor.
Not only that, you can choose to pay for your subscription through a wide variety of options, cryptocurrency being one of them.
A very solid product that isn’t expensive but has so much to offer.
Price: $9.90/mo. or $118.8/yr.
Locations: 100+ across 65+ countries
Devices: up to 5
VPN Area is solid VPN service ran by a Bulgarian-based company.
They don’t have the largest pool of servers, but their no-logs policy and nice features make it a great choice for those looking for an entry-level VPN.
The company is not as old as some of the other ones listed in this guide, yet they’ve been present since 2011, and it’s more than enough to confirm they’re serious about its product.
Unlimited bandwidth and 256-bit AES encryption both come at a pretty affordable price. In addition, on VPN Area’s website, you’ll often find promotions and discounts, which means you’ll most likely be able to save even more on the subscription.
If you ever require customer support, you can contact the team through email or Skype, whichever method works better for you.
A great thing to know about VPN Area is the company’s 1:3 “user to server” ratio which ensures no downtime and many options for all its customers.
All in all, it’s not the best VPN out there, but it does its job. If you want a VPN strictly for Netflix or some “light geo-restriction bypassing,” there are probably better alternatives.
What Is A VPN?
However, a VPN is used for many different reasons as well. But, before we get into that, let’s simplify and explain how a VPN works.
When you connect to a Virtual Private Network, your data is sent through a virtual “tunnel” from your local network to an exit node located somewhere else. These exit nodes can sometimes be thousands of kilometers away, making the receiver of your data believe you come from a different location.
So, how does this help?
Well, let’s say you live in a place where Netflix and Spotify are blocked, but you really want to watch some quality content and listen to music on these two platforms. What is the solution? That’s easy, a VPN.
But is this the only purpose of a Virtual Private Network? There has to be so much more behind it than just “dodging” geo-blocks, right? Correct.
VPN’s help you hide your browsing history, your current physical location and IP address, the type of device you’re using to go online, and much more.
So, what if you don’t care if someone sees your browsing history, and you couldn’t care less about Netflix or Spotify since they aren’t blocked in your country? Do you still need a VPN? Learn more in the following section.
Do I Need A VPN?
Most people think they don’t need a VPN until they realize how their “casual” internet activities can quickly turn into something more serious when a hacker crosses their path.
All of us use a smartphone, and most of the time, people don’t care whether they’re on public Wi-Fi when doing things such as banking or sending/receiving payments. The “average Joe” doesn’t even know the difference between public or private Wi-Fi.
Let’s say you’re waiting for your appointment at the doctor’s office, and all of a sudden you have to send money to a really close friend or one of your children. So you quickly pick up your smartphone and log into your online banking account, which is a pretty common thing to do in a modern, digital era.
You use “Incognito” mode on your browser because that should keep us safe, and you quickly make the transfer, then put your smartphone back in your pocket and go on with your day.
There’s nothing wrong with this scenario, right? Or so you think.
If there’s somebody with malicious intent spying on that public network, and you are not using a VPN, they can steal all of your credentials and empty your online bank account in less than a minute. Other frauds are possible, too, such as identity theft.
But isn’t this a very rare type of scenario? When you take a look at the huge yearly increase of cyber-crime, you won’t be thinking like that anymore.
So, yes, everyone needs a VPN. The truth is, you can never be too careful on the internet.
How To Choose The Best VPN For You
Choosing the best VPN for you is not easy. There are so many different brands advertising as the best, and when you are a beginner, this can easily become overwhelming and discouraging.
There’s no need to worry, though, since following these simple steps will help you end up with the best VPN for your needs.
Not everyone can afford to pay hundreds of dollars every month for a VPN. This is why the price factor is one of the most important elements. Therefore it is listed first.
So, you can start by filtering products by their price. If you have a pre-determined budget of how much you’re willing to pay for a VPN, try to find VPNs that fall in that range.
If you don’t have the time to do this research on your own, along with all the VPNs listed above, you can also see their monthly and yearly-basis prices.
VPNs that offer a free trial are usually able to “score” a lot more customers. This is because users try the free trial, and once they get used to the product, they don’t want to switch anymore, so they upgrade their plan to the “Premium” version.
Obviously, this is not always the case, but it does happen quite frequently.
The more server locations a VPN service has to offer, the better for you.
Suppose you want to access a local Romanian website that doesn’t allow traffic outside of that country, and your VPN provider doesn’t have a server in Romania. What’s the use of paying them? You need a broader service!
But, you also shouldn’t judge the quality of a VPN just by this factor alone. Some newer companies are still on the rise and don’t have thousands of locations in each city worldwide, yet their product functions flawlessly.
A few servers in each country are usually perfect, and you probably won’t need any more than that anyway.
Number Of Connections
Paying $10 for an entire month of VPN on your smartphone doesn’t seem like a bad deal. However, paying an extra $10 for each smartphone or laptop, you have in your home suddenly becomes a huge cost.
Thankfully, most VPN providers allow you to connect multiple devices and share the same subscription. This number, of course, varies depending on the company you’re going to choose, but there tends to be a standard of up to 5 devices. So try to find a VPN provider that offers at least that many.
One of the most sought-after things nowadays is the superior “No-Logging” policy that top-tier VPN providers have. This means that even if someone tries to breach the company’s servers or the authorities request the data of a certain customer, you’re protected. Why? Because the VPN provider has nothing to give. They don’t keep any of it!
You should always be looking for companies that operate under the no-log policy.
It’s also a huge plus if the VPN provider doesn’t require your email address or real name to sign you up for an account.
What’s functionality without a well-crafted user interface and wide availability?
Let’s be real. Not everyone is a computer expert! So, when a beginner user downloads a VPN, they may not know what any of those terms, such as “hopping” or “split tunneling,” mean.
We recommend that you opt for a VPN that carefully explains its features and has a user-friendly UI. This is what most modern VPN companies are striving for, as each year, more and more beginners learn about Virtual Private Networks.
The very “best” VPN provider should also have a client that runs on as many platforms as possible. This means that if you have an iPhone, but your laptop runs on Windows, you shouldn’t be paying for two different VPNs because the one you purchased cannot run on both platforms.
Best VPN FAQ
- What is the best VPN for 2021?
The best VPN for 2021 is ExpressVPN. This Virtual Private Network comes with many features, a very user-friendly design for their clients, multiple platform support, and a money-back guarantee in case you find something that you don’t like.
Unlimited bandwidth and 160 locations across 94 countries are incredibly good for a relatively fair price. This VPN is currently rated really high across multiple review websites, Trustpilot being one of them.
- What is the best time to buy a VPN?
The best time to buy a VPN is today. However, if you are already looking at a certain VPN that you want to purchase, it’s probably better to wait for the next discount or promotion, as they happen quite often.
Usually, promotions happen when new seasons start (spring sale, etc.…), so keep an eye on that.
- How does a VPN work?
A VPN works by sending your internet data to a different location through a virtual tunnel, so when someone receives that data, they think you live in the area where the tunnel ends.
Without a VPN, anyone can see your real IP address and your current physical location, which is pretty dangerous.
- Should I pay for a VPN?
Yes. A VPN is probably one of the best investments a person can make regarding internet safety.
However, if you are a newer user and you’re first looking to learn how VPNs work and whether they are really efficient or not, there are many free ones you can choose from. TunnelBear is one of them.
- Are VPNs legal?
Virtual Private Networks are legal to use in most parts of the world. However, there are a few places where they are forbidden: China, Turkey, Belarus, and North Korea.