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In today’s online world, a VPN is essential, especially if you care about your privacy.
A good VPN will allow you to browse the internet anonymously, protect against identity theft, and even allow you to unblock geo-restricted websites.
And most importantly, a good VPN provider won’t hand over your data to government agencies if they request them.
But with so many of them available, which one should you choose?
After spending ten years testing out different services, these are the five best VPN providers available right now:
Carry on reading to find out why these 5 made the list.
First on my list of the best VPN services, we have NordVPN.
With a strong no-logs policy, NordVPN is my top pick because it has the fastest speeds, a huge selection of servers worldwide, and is trusted by millions.
With the NordVPN complete package, you get:
- The VPN with 5,143 servers in 59 countries
- Protect up to 6 devices at once
- Unblock geo-restricted sites
- Malware protection
- Tracker and ad blocker
- Cross-platform password manager
- Data breach scanner
- 1TB encrypted cloud storage to store your files
- 24/7 support
- 30-day money-back guarantee
Or, if you just want the VPN, you can buy the cheaper standard package, which provides you with the VPN, malware protection, tracker, and ad blocker.
NordVPN is a VPN service created by Nord Security that will keep your identity, data, and browsing activity safe when you venture online.
Based in Panama, NordVPN is well outside the main surveillance alliances like the Five Eyes, Nine Eyes, and 14 Eyes, meaning you don’t have to worry about governments snooping on you when you surf the web.
Whether you want to protect your privacy, guard against identity theft, or visit blocked websites, NordVPN can help.
Let’s look at the main features that make NordVPN my choice for the best VPN.
NordVPN Main Features
NordVPN has a vast customer base and is doing something right. Here’s a rundown of its best features:
- 5,000+ servers: NordVPN has 5,143 servers in 59 countries worldwide, offering secure, stable connections wherever you are.
- High speed: Connection speeds of up to 6730+ Mbps and no bandwidth limits.
- Strong no-logs policy: NordVPN promises never to log, track, collect or share your data.
- Multi-platform support: NordVPN works with almost every device you could think of, including Windows, macOS, Linux, iOS, Android, and even wireless routers and other platforms like NAS devices.
- Protection for up to 6 devices: You can simultaneously protect up to six different Windows, Mac, Linux, or mobile devices with one subscription.
- Anonymity: NordVPN’s Onion over VPN lets you surf anonymously on The Onion Router (TOR) while staying protected.
- Private file sharing: To help you share private files securely, safely, and quickly, NordVPN operates hundreds of P2P servers across the globe.
- 24/7 customer support: NordVPN claims to offer a 24/7 live chat customer support service so you can get help any time of the day or night, no matter where you are.
NordVPN is one of the best-known VPN services and has dozens of celebrity endorsements, including PewDiePie, CaseyNeistat, and Phillip DeFranco.
But what do real customers think of NordVPN?
On Trustpilot, NordVPN is rated “Excellent” based on over 20,000 reviews!
They currently have a 4.4 out of 5, with over 74% of reviewers giving the service the full five stars.
My NordVPN Experience
After seeing that NordVPN offers a 30-day money-back guarantee, I signed up for their Complete plan.
NordVPN was super easy to set up. After purchasing, it only took me a couple of minutes to download the software and get started.
One thing I immediately liked about NordVPN is just how easy and intuitive it is to use.
You can even “Quick Connect” to the best and fastest server with just one click.
As you can see from the screenshot above, you can easily find the server you want with the search bar or by clicking on the world map.
All VPN services will slow down connection speeds, but I was pleased by how well NordVPN stood up.
You can see from the image below that my download speeds only dropped a little when I connected to their best server.
Signing up for the ‘Complete’ plan gave me access to malware protection, a tracker and ad blocker, and a data breach scanner.
My biggest surprise was how well the ad blocker worked and helped speed up my browsing.
I liked NordVPN’s ‘Double VPN’ feature, which changed my IP address twice, and felt secure about their ‘Kill Switch,’ which prevented web access if the VPN connection dropped at any time.
NordVPN worked flawlessly at unblocking sites and getting around geo-restrictions.
From the US, I was able to unblock BBC iPlayer in the UK.
And when I went to Croatia for a week, I used it to unblock Netflix US.
I also like that when I browse Google, I rarely get a captcha checking to see if I’m a bot.
You can use NordVPN on up to 6 different devices at once, and they have apps for every device.
It worked great on my Windows PC, iPhone, Android TV, and MacBook.
You can also set up NordVPN on your router, which means that anything connected to the router will be automatically protected.
So far, I’ve not had to contact support because NordVPN has worked flawlessly, but after reading reviews on Trustpilot, I was impressed with how many people there were praising support.
Why Join NordVPN?
I’ve tried pretty much all the popular VPN services, and NordVPN is, without a doubt my number 1 recommendation.
It’s the best VPN because:
- Helpful support 24/7
- Strict no logs policy
- Based in Panama, so there is no obligation to share customer data with governments
- Huge range of servers and ips to connect to
- Connection speeds are super-fast
- When I search Google connected to NordVPN, I rarely have to complete captchas
- Unblocks streaming services
- Easy to use
- 30-day money-back guarantee.
The password manager, cloud file storage, and ad blocker are also great.
NordVPN is now my go-to VPN service and the only one I use nowadays.
The standard plan costs $11.99 per month. But if you select a two-year plan, you can get it for only $83.43, which works out to only $3.09 per month.
Plus, it comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee so that you can try it, and if you’re not impressed, you can get your money back.
The second place on my list of the best VPN services goes to ExpressVPN.
ExpressVPN is owned and operated by a company called KAPE Technologies, based in the British Virgin Islands.
ExpressVPN is fully compatible with every operating system and has user-friendly apps for PC, Mac, Linux, iOS, Android, routers, and more.
Here are a few reasons you’ll like ExpressVPN:
- Trusted by millions
- Thousands of servers in 94 countries
- Simple and easy-to-use interface
- Strict no logs policy
- Built-in password manager
- High-speed servers
- Kill switch prevents your real ip being leaked if your connection to ExpressVPN drops
- Works on all devices
- Encrypts your internet traffic
- 24/7 support
- 30-day money-back guarantee
One of ExpressVPN’s key features is that it has an audited no-logs policy and doesn’t collect any identifying data.
Being audited is a definite plus as you don’t have to take the company’s word for it.
With 3,000 servers in 94 countries, ExpressVPN has significantly fewer servers than NordVPN but more countries to choose from.
ExpressVPN gives instructions on their website on how to unblock over 25 streaming services, including Disney, Amazon Prime, and Netflix.
24/7 customer support is also available to help with any issues you experience along the way.
ExpressVPN is recommended by top names, including PCWorld, Techradar, and The Huffington Post.
And customers seem to like it because they have a 4.7-star rating on Trustpilot with over 11,000 reviews.
When I tested ExpressVPN, I loved its simplicity and ease of use.
Simply choose a server to connect to and click connect. Or click the big connect button and connect to the best server available.
When using ExpressVPN to do a Google search, Google will rarely ask you to fill out a captcha, but it does happen now and then.
I also had no problems connecting to a UK server to watch BBC iPlayer.
Even though ExpressVPN has notably fewer servers than NordVPN, the connection speeds are still lightning fast.
Here are my before and after connection speeds using ExpressVPN:
ExpressVPN is one of the best VPN services; you can feel safe using it.
It’s a little more expensive than NordVPN at $12.95 per month, but you can save 35% if you sign up for a 12-month plan for $99.84 which works out to $8.32 per month.
It doesn’t provide the same value as NordVPN, which gives you two years of service for only $83.43.
ExpressVPN also comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Third place on my list of the best VPN services is Surfshark.
Surfshark is an award-winning VPN service that has recently added many new features.
It offers all the features you’d expect from a top VPN, including:
- 3,200 servers in 65 countries
- 100% RAM-based servers
- A super-fast protocol called Wireguard
- Strong encryption (AES 256 GCM)
- Built-in ad blocker
- Private DNS and leak protection
- 24/7 support
- Strict no-logs policy
- 30-day money-back guarantee.
All the servers in Surfshark are 100% RAM-based.
Why’s this important?
RAM-based servers aren’t vulnerable to third-party data breaches like hard-drive-based servers, making them a little more secure.
Another key feature of Surfshark is that you can run unlimited devices on one account, unlike NordVPN, which limits you to just six devices.
Customers seem to like it too.
Surfshark has an impressive Trustpilot rating of 4.3 stars with over 16,000 reviews.
For an extra $1.49 per month, you will also get access to:
- Surfshark Antivirus.
- Alert: a service that alerts you if your personal information has been leaked online.
- Search: a private and anonymous search engine with no logs and trackers.
The Surfshark VPN is very simple and intuitive.
On the main interface, you’ll find the “Quick Connect” button connecting you to one of their servers in seconds.
Connection speeds are fast too.
Surfshark also works great for unblocking restricted websites and streaming services.
I tried it on many services, including Fanduel, Netflix UK, BBC iPlayer, and it worked perfectly.
As you can tell, I’m incredibly impressed with Surfshark and highly recommend it.
The price is competitive, especially if you go for the 24-month plan.
Surfshark charges $12.95 per month, but if you go for the 24-month plan it costs only $59.76, which works out to just $2.49 per month.
Plus, it comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee, so it’s worth checking out.
Fourth place on my list of the best VPN services is VyprVPN.
Ron and Carolyn Yokubaitis of GoldenFrog created VyprVPN to provide a VPN that could protect the privacy of its users from the prying eyes of government agencies.
GoldenFrog is based in Switzerland to benefit from the pro-privacy laws.
It offers comparable features to my top three VPN picks, including a publicly audited no-log policy, a kill switch, 24/7 support, and apps for every device.
VyprVPN has 700 servers and 300,000 IP addresses in 70 locations worldwide.
The company owns all its servers and hardware, meaning there is no risk of third parties compromising its security.
Another stand-out feature of VyprVPN is the ‘chameleon’ technology to bypass almost any type of government, corporation, or ISP geo-restrictions.
According to VyprVPN’s Trustpilot profile, the company has a 3.6-star rating based on 250 reviews, so they’re a tiny company compared to my top 3 picks.
The main complaint from customers seems to be that it’s inconsistent, buffering times take too long, and it doesn’t work to unblock geo-restricted websites.
It worked great for me, although it slowed down my internet a bit too much, and I got a few too many captcha requests while doing Google searches.
VyprVPN has all the same features as other top VPNs, including static IP addresses and 24/7 live chat support. It comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee, so if my top 3 picks aren’t for you, this one is worth a try.
Fifth place on my list of the best VPN services goes to IPVanish.
While IPVanish isn’t as well-known as some of my other picks, it offers the same level of privacy and security as the top picks, including 24/7 customer support.
IPVanish recently switched to using Wireguard, the exact VPN protocol used by Surfshark, and according to TechRadar, this “has electrified speeds”.
As all major platforms support Wireguard, IPVanish has apps for every device, including desktop, mobile, consoles, and routers.
The company says it has a network of over 2,000 servers, 40,000 IP addresses, and 75 VPN locations, meaning that you should enjoy a high-speed VPN connection regardless of where you are in the world.
IPVanish has received praise from some of the most trusted names in the industry, including CNet, IGN, and Forbes.
And customers seem to love it too.
They are clearly doing something right with a Trustpilot rating of 4.6 stars based on over 7,800 reviews.
When I tested IPVanish, I loved its auto-reconnect feature as it saved me so much time not having to connect wherever I turned on my desktop or laptop.
I also liked the split-tunneling feature on Android which lets you preset what apps connect to the VPN.
This meant I could stream anonymously without the VPN affecting things like my online banking.
Overall, the best feature of IPVanish is that it runs Wireguard on all clients, meaning that it’s just as fast and secure as my top picks.
IPVanish’s ransomware and malware protection package (available on annual subscriptions) greatly minimizes tracking and keeps speeds high.
In terms of pricing, IPVanish is in line with the other VPN providers.
A 1 month’s subscription will cost you $10.99, or you can sign up for a one-year package for $39.99, which works out to just $3.33 per month.
IPVanish offers a risk-free 30-day guarantee when you sign up for a one-year plan, so it’s worth checking out!
Best VPN: Recap
Over the past ten years, I’ve tried all the VPN services available, and these five are the best.
Here’s a quick recap:
- NordVPN: Best all-rounder for speed, security, and mobile devices.
- ExpressVPN: Best for streaming.
- Surfshark: Great value for fast and secure browsing.
- VyprVPN: Chameleon technology will keep your privacy secure.
- IPVanish: Wireguard technology for fast and secure browsing.
Luckily, all five of my picks come with 30-day risk-free money-back guarantees. So, if you have any issues, you can quickly get a refund.
If I could recommend just one product on this list of the best VPN services, it would be NordVPN.
Their software is unmatched when it comes to overall speed, privacy, and price, and millions around the world trust them.