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Best VPN services in 2022


A VPN or Virtual Private Network is a security tool that ensures your security online by encrypting your data and helps to stay anonymous online. Additionally, a reliable VPN doesn’t collect your data, secures your internet connection, and unlocks global content libraries and regionally-blocked sites.

Only the best VPN can offer all those features and more for a great price. A VPN is easy to use and has plenty of server locations that you can choose from, so you can enjoy the wanted internet freedom.

With so many VPNs out there, choosing the best one is no easy task, especially when the market is overfilled with providers claiming to be the best. But that’s why we’re here to help.

Having tested and reviewed dozens of providers, we bring you our list with detailed reviews of the best VPN services in 2022. Read on to find the top ones in terms of security, privacy, streaming, pricing, and more.

Best VPNs of December 2022

  1. NordVPN – the best VPN overall in 2022
  2. Surfshark VPN – best VPN for unlimited number of devices
  3. IPVanish – best VPN for inexpensive for all-around protection
  4. PrivateVPN – excellent streaming VPN
  5. PureVPN – top VPN for security and privacy

📢 LIMITED OFFER: Get NordVPN, only now 68% OFF +3 months FREE!

How to choose the best VPN

The process of choosing the best VPN may differ for different users. That’s because while some people want a VPN primarily for security and privacy reasons, others just want to access global content libraries. No matter the reason, there are a few main criteria you should consider when looking for the best VPN solution.

First off, it’s security and privacy. A VPN has to have strong data encryption and a reliable kill switch that would help avoid accidental data leaks. Another must is a strict no-logs policy so you’d be guaranteed that data is only present for your eyes only.

If you need a VPN for streaming or torrenting, performance and speeds are just as crucial to look at. Make sure you look through VPN speed tests before making any long-term commitments.

For all the movie buffs – read reviews and check whether the service you’re getting is a streaming VPN and can access most popular streaming platforms. Meanwhile, torrenters should look for VPNs that are P2P optimized.

Last but not least, always keep in mind that the best VPNs aren’t necessarily the most expensive ones. Make sure you’re getting your money’s worth.

The best VPNs for 2022 – our detailed list:

The following list of the best VPNs of 2022 is constantly evolving and changing. But one thing is always true – top VPN services below cater to different needs but are all 100% secure and reliable. With that in mind, without further ado, let’s take a look at what we have.

1. NordVPN – the best VPN available today

NordVPN banner
Servers/countries:5500+ servers in 59 countries
Money-back guarantee:30 days
Compatible with:Windows, macOS, Android, iOS, Android TV, Amazon Fire TV
Current deal:🔥 Get NordVPN with 68% OFF + 3 months FREE 🔥

NordVPN is our best VPN of 2022. The reason behind this is simple: it is one of the top VPNs on the market that balances speed, security, and even entertainment. But let’s take a look at everything one step at a time.

Security and privacy: NordVPN security measures don’t disappoint – it uses AES-256 encryption, has a reliable kill switch, and boasts an audited no-logs policy.

Performance: To ensure your best experience, NordVPN offers NordLynx tunneling protocol, which is a variation of the well-known WireGuard. It allows you to experience super fast speeds worldwide without sacrificing your security.

Data period: 11.17 - 12.01
Download Upload
United States United States
496 Mbit/s 416 Mbit/s
Canada Canada
499 Mbit/s 454 Mbit/s
United Kingdom United Kingdom
1482 Mbit/s 946 Mbit/s
See live VPN provider data on our VPN speed test tool

Features: This VPN blocks annoying ads and infected sites, offers all kinds of server types (like obfuscated servers), and includes SOCKS5 proxies for easy torrenting.

Streaming: With this VPN you will be able to unblock virtually any streaming service including Netflix, Hulu, BBC iPlayer, DAZN, and HBO Max. You can even use the VPN connection with devices that don’t support native VPN apps thanks to the SmartDNS technology.

Compatibility: NordVPN supports all the major platforms: Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, and iOS. There are also apps for Android TV, Raspberry Pi, Fire Stick, and more. All the applications are extremely easy to use, and tailored to a specific product's interface – so you won’t have any problems, even if it’s your first time using a VPN.

The prices of NordVPN start at 2.99/month and you get 6 simultaneous connections. And if you don’t fully enjoy the service, you have a 30-day money-back guarantee.

To learn more, check our NordVPN review.

2. Surfshark – best feature-to-price ratio VPN

Surfshark banner
Servers/countries:3200+ servers in 100 countries
Money-back guarantee:30 days
Compatible with:Windows, macOS, Android, iOS, Linux, Amazon Fire TV
Current deal:🔥 Get 84% OFF Surfshark + 2 months FREE 🔥

Surfshark is our second best VPN on this list because of the value it provides for the (little) money you pay. However, price isn’t everything – let’s look at what this VPN has to offer.

Security and privacy: When it comes to security, Surfshark has everything a reputable security tool must offer. It implements the unbreakable AES-256 encryption, and has an audited no-logs policy.

Performance: You can pick from lots of secure tunneling protocols like WireGuard and OpenVPN. This ensures fast connections and no noticeable speed drops. Surfshark has delivered excellent results all around the world.

Data period: 11.17 - 12.01
Download Upload
United States United States
487 Mbit/s 433 Mbit/s
Canada Canada
493 Mbit/s 450 Mbit/s
United Kingdom United Kingdom
1236 Mbit/s 950 Mbit/s
See live VPN provider data on our VPN speed test tool

Features: Plenty of Surfshark servers support P2P connections, which is really convenient for those who torrent a lot. Next, the service offers server obfuscation and the double VPN feature. You also get a malware blocker, split tunneling, and GPS spoofing on Android.

Streaming: This VPN unlocks lots of different streaming platforms. That includes not only the usual ones like Netflix or YouTube – you’ll also be able to enjoy DANZ, HBO Max, and Apple TV.

Compatibility: No matter which operating system you use, Surfshark has you covered. It has apps for Windows, Mac, Linux, Android, and iOS, as well as browser extensions for Chrome, Edge, and Firefox. You can also download apps for streaming devices, like smart TVs or Amazon Fire Stick, or set Surfshark up to work on your gaming console or router.

Surfshark VPN price starts at 2.05/month. This seems even lower when you consider that you also get unlimited simultaneous connections, the best option in the market – making this VPN an amazing option for all devices you own. And just in case, you can use the 30-day money-back guarantee for a refund.

Check out our full review of Surfshark VPN.

3. IPVanish – affordable, feature-packed VPN option

IPVanish banner
Servers/countries:2000+ servers in 50 countries
Money-back guarantee:30 days
Compatible with:Windows, macOS, Android, iOS
Current deal:🔥 Get 71% OFF IPVanish + 3 months FREE! 🔥

IPVanish is our third best VPN option due to its versatility – protection, torrenting, and streaming. If none of the previous best VPNs scratched your itch the right way, then maybe IPVanish will be the VPN of your dreams.

Security and privacy: Like all the other best VPN services, IPVanish uses the military-grade AES-256 encryption with SHA-512 hash functions. There’s also an audited no-logs policy and a functional kill switch.

Performance: This VPN provider supports multiple tunneling protocols – WireGuard, OpenVPN, and IKEv2. IPVanish will also provide you with high download speeds and a vast server selection.

Features: IPVanish offers split tunneling to decide which applications use the VPN tunnel. You also get a free SOCKS5 proxy for fast torrenting. Just like Surfshark and NordVPN, IPVanish offers obfuscated servers that will allow you to connect to their servers, in countries where VPNs are usually blocked.

Streaming: IPVanish works perfectly fine when unblocking Netflix, BBC iPlayer, and YouTube. However, it may struggle with other streaming services, so keep this in mind if you want a VPN for the sole purpose of unblocking movies and shows.

Compatibility: For different device coverage IPVanish has you covered. The application works with Windows, macOS, Android, and iOS operating systems.

When it comes to price, you can pay as little as 3.19/month if you get a long-term subscription. And, as all good VPNs should, IPVanish has a 30-day money-back guarantee for its long-term plans in case it doesn’t fit your needs.

To read more about IPVanish, visit our full review.

4. PrivateVPN – superb VPN for streaming

PrivateVPN banner
Servers/countries:200 servers in 63 countries
Money-back guarantee:30 days
Compatible with:Windows, macOS, Android, iOS
Current deal:🔥 Get PrivateVPN, now 85% OFF! 🔥

Even though PrivateVPN isn’t as popular as our previously mentioned best VPNs, it’s actually a really good privacy tool that more people should know about.

Security and privacy: PrivateVPN implements the revered AES-256 encryption, which is the security standard in the VPN world. It also lets you configure the encryption according to your needs. You can pick the more lightweight AES-128 and even choose between the CBC and GCM modes. There’s also a high-quality kill switch that passed all our tests.

Performance: Speed is not PrivateVPN’s shining star. Instead of the WireGuard protocol, PrivateVPN offers OpenVPN as the alternative. It isn’t as fast, but if the speed isn’t too big of an issue for you, you won’t even notice the drop too much.

Features: As far as the features go, PrivateVPN has a few aces up its sleeve. Namely, HTTP and SOCKS5 proxies, as well as the support for port forwarding for a faster online connection.

Streaming: This VPN flawlessly works with Netflix, BBC iPlayer, YouTube, and DAZN. However, PrivateVPN doesn’t offer the SmartDNS feature that allows you to stream unblocked content on devices that don’t support VPN connections.

Compatibility: With this VPN provider you can safely cover devices that run on Windows, macOS, Android, and iOS operating systems.

You can buy PrivateVPN for as low as 2.00/month, much lower than most major VPN providers. There’s a 7-day free trial and a 30-day money-back guarantee. Also, you get 10 simultaneous connections.

Here is our full PrivateVPN review.

5. PureVPN – constantly audited for security

purevpn
Servers/countries:6500+ servers in 78+ countries
Money-back guarantee:31 days
Compatible with:Windows, macOS, Android, iOS, Linux
Current deal:🔥 Get PureVPN, now 87% OFF 🔥

If security is your main reason for investing in a VPN, PureVPN may catch your eye. Not only does it offer comprehensive security features, it’s also the first VPN on the market that has the always-on audit.

Security and privacy: PureVPN uses the AES-256 encryption, ensuring top-notch security. Additionally, it has a reliable kill switch that will guarantee no accidental data leaks.

Performance: While some time ago, PureVPN didn’t have impressive speeds, the implementation of the WireGuard protocol changed the game. The provider now offers solid speeds and doesn’t limit your browsing experience.

Features: Android users get to enjoy the split tunneling feature, it’s a great solution when you want only certain apps to go through a VPN connection. There’s also the port forwarding feature, useful for remote device access or setting up gaming servers. Plus, you can get the password manager to securely store your credentials and autofill them online.

Streaming: Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Hulu – you name it, PureVPN can unblock it. The provider can easily bypass restrictions on DAZN as well, which not many competitors can brag about.

Compatibility: PureVPN has apps for all of the famous platforms – Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, and iOS. And everything is organized, clean, and ready to use.

In terms of pricing, you won’t have to break a bank. With prices starting from 1.49/month, PureVPN is a wallet-friendly solution. And since there’s a 31-day money-back guarantee, you can try the service out without instant long-term commitment.

Learn more in our PureVPN review.

6. Atlas VPN – inexpensive everyday VPN

Atlas VPN banner
Servers/countries:750 servers in 38 countries
Money-back guarantee:30 days
Compatible with:Windows, macOS, Android, iOS
Current deal:🔥 Get Atlas VPN, now 85% OFF + 6 months FREE! 🔥

No one said that a VPN has to be expensive to be good, and Atlas VPN offers great value for affordable prices. Here’s what this VPN has to offer:

Security and privacy: Atlas VPN ensures next-gen security – together with a strict privacy policy, the market-standard AES 256-bit encryption ensures top-quality data protection. Not to mention the kill switch, it offers that helps prevent data leaks.

Performance: As for speed, the implementation of the WireGuard protocol accelerated the performance of Atlas VPN. It is now one of the fastest VPNs on the market – ideal choice for gaming, streaming, and other activities.

Features: You get to enjoy a malware-free experience – Atlas VPN SafeBrowse feature will simply block malicious websites. To ensure protection at all times, the SafeSwap feature will keep automatically rotating your IP address.

Streaming: With Atlas VPN, you’ll be able to Netflix and chill with shows from all over the world. And if you’re more of a YouTube or BBC iPlayer fan, Atlas VPN won’t disappoint you either.

Compatibility: While the best apps of most VPNs are desktop ones, Atlas VPN is more mobile-focused. Although the Windows and macOS apps are great, the Android and iOS apps run even smoother.

Starting from 1.64/month for unlimited simultaneous connections, Atlas VPN is definitely on the cheaper scale. And even if it doesn’t live up to your expectations, you can always make use of their 30-day money-back guarantee.

To learn more, check out our Altas VPN review.

7. Proton VPN – best freemium VPN

ProtonVPN banner
Servers/countries:1800+ servers in 66 countries
Free version:Yes
Compatible with:Windows, macOS, Android, iOS, Linux, Android TV, Chromebook
Current deal:🔥 Get up to 50% OFF Proton VPN + 6 months FREE! 🔥

A great free version, strict no-logs policy, and robust security features – Proton VPN is a great catch. It’s a versatile service suitable for both complete novices and tech masters.

Security and privacy: Like many first-class VPN services, Proton VPN uses the so-called unbreakable AES encryption. And in case your VPN connection drops, the provider’s kill switch is going to keep your data safe.

Performance: In the speed department, Proton VPN is pretty fast. Although at times, there can be some speed inconsistencies, the overall performance is great. Thanks to WireGuard, and Proton’s own VPN Accelerator feature, this provider can compete with the speediest VPN providers.

Features: There’s split tunneling, and the double VPN feature that basically lets you use 2 VPN servers at once. For additional privacy, Tor over VPN and alternate routing will help you browse peacefully in countries with restricted internet freedom.

Streaming: And if you’re in need of a VPN for streaming, Proton VPN will definitely do the trick. There’s Netflix, Hulu, HBO Max, Disney+, BBC iPlayer, and more streaming services to enjoy.

Compatibility: While Windows users will experience the best version of Proton VPN, others, including macOS, Linux, and mobile users, won’t be disappointed either. The apps are very minimalistic, dark, and simple to navigate.

Proton VPN’s prices start from 3.99/month for 10 simultaneous connections. There’s also a limited free version. And if this provider turns out to be not your cup of tea, there’s a month-long money-back guarantee.

For more details, head over to the Proton VPN review.

8. VyprVPN – top VPN against censorship

vyprvpn banner
Servers/countries:700+ servers in 64 countries
Money-back guarantee:30 days
Compatible with:Windows, macOS, Android, iOS, Android TV, Blackphone, Anonabox, QNAP
Current deal:🔥 Get VyprVPN, now 50% OFF the 1-year plan! 🔥

Speedy, very secure, and private – these are the first words that come to mind when describing VyprVPN. It’s focused heavily on bypassing censorship and giving the best overall browsing experience.

Security and privacy: VyprVPN has strong encryption and a fully-functional kill switch. A zero-log service, VyprVPN also has its privacy policy audited independently, so your data is in safe hands.

Performance: The provider includes one of the fastest protocols out there – WireGuard. Nearby servers can even be amazing for a buffering-free streaming or gaming experience.

Features: This VPN will automatically connect to a server if you connect to an unknown network. Also, there’s a feature called Malicious Site Block that blocks malicious websites. And if you only want some of the traffic to go through a VPN, you can make use of the split tunneling feature.

Streaming: VyprVPN is one of the top VPN choices for streaming since it’s capable of unblocking all of the most popular sites – Netflix, YouTube, Hulu, DAZN, and even more.

Compatibility: Whether you’re a Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, or iOS user – VyprVPN has apps for all of them. Both mobile and desktop applications are no nut-crackers – you’ll figure them out in minutes if not seconds.

The prices of VyprVPN are fairly hefty – starting from 5.00/month. But if you add your payment details, Android and iOS users can make use of the free 3-day trial. There’s also a 30-day money-back guarantee, giving you 33 free days in total!

Check our VyprVPN review for a full breakdown.

9. Ivacy VPN – safe VPN with anonymous payment options

Ivacy VPN banner
Servers/countries:5700+ servers in 68 countries
Money-back guarantee:30 days
Compatible with:Windows, macOS, Android, iOS, Android TV, Amazon Fire
Current deal:🔥 Get Ivacy VPN, now 90% OFF + gift!🔥

Ivacy VPN offers a massive array of worldwide servers, as well as fully anonymous payment options, top security features, and good streaming functionality. All of that – for a very good price.

Security and privacy: A simple and intuitive split tunneling function, AES-256 encryption, and no logs – something we’ve grown to expect from all premium VPNs by now.

Performance: Ivacy doesn’t offer the WireGuard protocol, which delivers faster speeds and additional security. However, it still does a solid job with OpenVPN and IKEv2 protocols – the VPN offers above-average performance.

Features: The Ivacy’s Secure Download feature monitors your downloads for potentially harmful data. This additional layer of security separates this VPN from many others on the list. Plus, with cryptocurrency payments, privacy-conscious users can also purchase this VPN without giving away any of their private details.

Streaming: Ivacy offers specialized streaming servers, and they work really well on Netflix, YouTube, and BBC iPlayer. Services like DAZN work a bit worse – but even then, we managed to connect by picking a different server.

Compatibility: The VPN offers applications for Windows, macOS, Android, and iOS. Plus, there are multiple additional solutions for browser extensions, streaming devices, smart TVs, routers, and more.

With Ivacy VPN you can cover 10 devices simultaneously. Sign up for a massive 5-year plan for just 1.00 a month – and you’ll get a solid password manager app thrown in for free. As usual, there’s a money-back guarantee in case you’re not happy with your purchase.

Here’s our Ivacy VPN review for more information.

10. Norton VPN – VPN for all-around online security

norton vpn banner
Servers/countries:1000+ servers in 30 countries
Money-back guarantee:60 days
Compatible with:Windows, macOS, Android, iOS
Current deal:🔥Get up to 40% OFF NortonVPN!🔥

Norton is known more for its excellent antivirus. But the VPN gives an extra layer of security, with safe browsing via servers in 30 countries and a powerful ad blocker.

Security and privacy: Norton VPN includes all safe browsing essentials, such as the AES-256 military-grade encryption, the split tunneling feature, and a strict no-logs policy. There’s also a system-wide kill switch that will keep your Internet data from leaking.

Performance: In terms of performance, Norton VPN uses the OpenVPN protocol on mobile apps and IPSec on desktop apps. Even though there's no WireGuard support, Norton VPN offers really good speeds.

Features: The ad blocker removes unwanted banners, pop ups, and redirects, reducing your exposure to online threats. Plus, the wifi security feature launches Norton VPN whenever you’re connected to an unsafe online network.

Streaming: Norton VPN is only okay when it comes to streaming. HBO Max and BBC iPlayer both work perfectly but we had some issues getting reliable Netflix or Hulu connections.

Compatibility: There are no dedicated NortonVPN apps for streaming devices. Nor are there any browser extensions – the apps are only available for Windows, macOS, iOS, and Android.

Norton VPN price will depend on how many simultaneous connections you wish to have, as well as whether you want to use other Norton products. For one device only, Norton VPN starts at 2.50/month. Or you can go all-in, and pick up Norton 360, which includes Norton VPN, online identity protection, and a top antivirus – for 9.99/year.

If you want to learn more, check our Norton VPN review.

Comparison of the best VPNs

NordVPNSurfsharkIPVanishPrivateVPNPureVPNAtlasVPNProton VPNVyprVPNIvacy VPNNorton VPN
Brandlogologologologologologologologologologo
ReviewNordVPN reviewSurfshark VPN reviewIPVanish reviewPrivateVPN reviewPureVPN reviewAtlas VPN reviewProton VPN reviewVyprVPN reviewIvacy VPN reviewNorton VPN review
Rating
4.9
4.7
4.6
4.5
4.4
4.3
4.2
4.1
4.0
4.0
Free versionYes, 7-dayYes, 7-dayNoYes, 7-dayYes, 7-dayYes, unlimitedYes, unlimitedYes, 3-dayYes, 1-dayYes, 7-day
Price (lowest price per month)2.99/month2.05/month3.19/month2.00/month1.49/month1.64/month3.99/month5.00/month1.00/month2.50/month
StreamingNetflix, Hulu, BBC iPlayer, Disney+, and moreNetflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime Video, and moreNetflix, BBC iPlayer, YouTubeNetflix, Hulu, BBC iPlayer, Amazon Video, and moreNetflix, BBC iPlayer, YouTubeNetflix, BBC iPlayer, YouTubeNetflix, BBC iPlayer, YouTube, HBO Max, Disney+Netflix, Hulu, BBC iPlayer, YouTubeNetflix, BBC iPlayer, YoutubeBBC iPlayer, HBO
LoggingNo logs, independently audited twice by PwCNo logs, independently audited by Cure 53No logs, independently audited by LeviathanNo logs, not auditedNo logs, always-on audit by KPMGNo logs, independently audited by VerSprite (iOS penetration testing)No logs, independently audited by SecuritumNo logs, independently audited by LeviathanNo logs, not auditedNo logs, not audited
Servers5500+ servers in 59 countries3200+ servers in 100 countries2000+ servers in 50 countries200+ servers in 63 countries6500+ servers in 78 countries750+ servers in 38 countries1800+ servers in 66 countries700+ servers in 64+ countries5700+ servers, 68 countries1000+ servers, 30 countries
Simultaneous connections6UnlimitedUnlimited1010
UnlimitedUp to 1051010
CountryPanamaThe Netherlands (part of 9 Eyes)
United States (part of 5 Eyes)Sweden (Part of 14 Eyes)British Virgin IslandsUnited States (part of 5 Eyes)SwitzerlandSwitzerlandSingaporeUnited States
Best forStreaming, torrenting, securityStreaming, torrenting, securityStreaming, torrenting, securityTorrenting, securityStreaming, securityStreaming, torrenting, securityTorrenting, securitySecuritySecuritySecurity

The best VPN deals: how to get them?

Right now is the best time to save – Black Friday is the time for the biggest discounts of the year. Some of the industry's best VPNs are no exception. Here are some of the best Black Friday VPN deals for the top products in the industry.

VPN buying guide: how to get the best option?

Choosing the best VPN for your needs can be a little complicated. There are a lot of different variables and features to choose from. In order to help you make an informed decision, we put together this VPN guide – showcasing the main things to consider.

Security

  • High-speed protocols. Top VPN providers offer protocols like WireGuard or similar. Fast and secure, they offer performance closest to your original connection speed, letting you browse freely.
  • Streaming capabilities. You might want to use your VPN to browse worldwide show and movie libraries: so, choose a VPN which can easily unblock streaming platforms of your choice.
  • Torrenting. Hiding your original IP address, VPNs are excellent options for torrenting. By picking a good VPN, you can keep yourself more secure and avoid throttling or other penalties caused by your ISP.
  • Specialized servers. Several top VPNs offer specialized servers, whose performance is optimized to work best for torrenting, streaming, or to give you the highest level of security. If you have a specific use in mind, look for such options.
  • Threat protection or antivirus. Nowadays, VPNs can offer more than just change your IP. Several options out there some together with ad, malware, or tracker blockers – or even full-fledged antivirus platforms.

Features

  • IP leak protection. With additional protection features, top VPNs make sure your original IP isn't accidentally seen by services you're trying to connect to.
  • No logs. Best VPN providers don't log any of your personal information: making sure none of it can potentially be seen by anyone.
  • Independent audits. By hiring acknowledged third-party security companies to review their services, best VPNs make sure their security practices are both strong and transparent.
  • RAM-only servers. Many VPN providers have moved their services to be RAM-only. This means that all the information going through the servers is periodically deleted, unable to be stored anywhere else.

Usability

  • Apps for your devices. Make sure your chosen VPN offers apps for the devices you wish to use it on. Most top VPNs offer dedicated options for mobile, tablet, desktop devices, and even some streaming sticks.
  • Large range of worldwide servers. The more servers a provider has, the fewer people will be on one – that means better performance. More countries also gives you better worldwide coverage.
  • Simultaneous connections. You might want to use a VPN on several devices at the same time. Pick a VPN which offers at least 5 simultaneous connections. There are plenty of VPNs which don't limit these connections at all.
  • Split tunneling. This feature allows you to configure certain apps to not use a VPN connection. This is helpful if you only want a VPN for a specific task, and don't wish for it to be used elsewhere.
  • 24/7 customer support. Top VPNs offer around-the-clock customer support, that's ready to help you in case something goes wrong.

Price

  • Long-term plan. You'll get the best offers there. The best value VPN option will cost around $2-3 a month when signing up for 2 or 3 years. More expensive providers might offer you additional features, like an antivirus or secure storage.
  • Short-term plan. These are significantly more expensive. Most VPNs will charge you about $10-12 a month, when paying monthly. It's not a good long-term solution, but decent enough if you just want to try the product out.
  • Free plan or a money-back guarantee. Some VPNs will offer limited versions of their products for you to try. But you can also pick up a premium plan and see the full experience: just make sure to pick a VPN with a solid money-back guarantee.

How we test and rank these VPNs

Ranking VPN services is no easy feat. You have to consider a lot of factors, from the number of features to compatibility with various devices.

Providers tested:32
Operating systems used:Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, iOS
Servers tested:UK, US, Australia, Germany, Japan
Protocols used for speed testing:WireGuard
Streaming services tested:Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Hulu, HBO Max, BBC iPlayer, DAZN, Disney+
Platform tested for torrenting:uTorrent with the file from Ubuntu
Customer support option tested:24/7 live chat, email support, knowledge base, how-to guides

So what should you know before buying a Virtual Private Network? There’s more than a few things to check if you want to choose the best option for you.

Below is the VPN buying guide for 2022 with 7 crucial points we considered in making this list:

  1. Speed. Unless your ISP is using bandwidth throttling, your connection with a VPN will be slower because of encryption, distance to the server, and other factors. That being said, it doesn’t have to be slow. If fast speed is a priority, search for a service that offers the WireGuard protocol and is often mentioned on fastest VPN lists.
  2. Server list. Check if the VPN has enough servers around your location. Some concentrate their resources in North America and Europe, but others have solid presence in Asia as well. Also, make sure there are servers in the countries to which you’re planning to connect to. Finally, look for a VPN that has only physical servers with RAM-only storage.
  3. VPN jurisdiction. You have to be a really bad girl or a bad boy to get noticed by the intelligence agencies. Nevertheless, it’s still better when your VPN is in a privacy-friendly jurisdiction, such as Switzerland, and not in one of the 14-Eyes countries (US, UK, Australia, etc.) or, even worse, a country like China.
  4. Streaming and torrenting. Some VPNs are unable to unblock Netflix and other streaming platforms, while others prohibit P2P traffic. If that’s what you need, make sure you’ll be able to do both.
  5. Apps and supported devices. Most VPNs support the major OS types, but if you’re a fan of Linux, the list narrows down. Furthermore, you would want to protect all of your devices, so make sure your provider supports your router, game console, and smart TV. Finally, check if the number of simultaneous connections will be enough for you.
  6. Customer support. Don’t settle for a VPN that doesn’t offer a 24/7 live chat. It’s an industry standard, not some premium feature.
  7. Bang-for-the-buck. Finally, make sure you’re not overpaying. There are many VPNs with similar features and contrasting prices. Also, don’t forget to exercise your money-back guarantee – most providers give one month to test things out.

What is a VPN?

A Virtual Private Network (VPN) is a service that secures your connection over the Internet. It encrypts your IP address and hides your activity from third parties – hackers, the government, or your Internet Service Provider (ISP).

The best VPN providers include a big array of servers all across the world. In order to change your IP to a different one anywhere, a VPN makes it as simple as clicking a button. Then, all of your traffic gets routed through an encrypted tunnel. As a result, anyone who try to look into your traffic will only be able to see that you are connected through an encrypted tunnel – without being able to take a peek at what is inside that tunnel.

This is an excellent feature for several types of people: many use VPN to avoid spying and hacking that can happen when connected to an unsafe wireless connection. Journalists use it when working with sensitive information or accessing various online resources. Others need this functionality to access geo-restricted websites and see the content that is banned in their countries, either by copyright agreements or government censorship.

Reasons why you need a VPN

There are several reasons why you could need a VPN: let’s talk about some of the main ones in detail.

  • Protection against cyberthreats. Your digital footprints are scattered all around the web. Your browsing activity can be tracked and used against you. A VPN masks your IP, helping avoid certain cyber threats.
  • Securing your online privacy. Your passwords, banking details, and other personal information can leak through an unsafe online connection – a secure VPN can help protect it.
  • Improving connection speed. Your ISP might be throttling your connection to specific services, like streaming or torrenting. With a VPN, it can’t tell what connections you’re using: letting you hit full speed.
  • Bypassing streaming geo-restrictions. What we see online is merely a fraction of what’s there. Streaming services have loads of geo-blocked content. By using a VPN, you can change your IP address and access it all.
  • Getting around censorship. Some countries that are privacy-unfriendly (like China) tend to censor political or other types of topics. A strong VPN helps you bypass censorship and hide the fact that you’re using a VPN.
  • Secure torrenting. A VPN for torrenting helps you do it anonymously and safely without compromising performance.
  • Avoid regional price discrimination. Some companies, for instance airlines, sometimes put different prices in different countries. Using a VPN can help avoid that and find the cheapest deals.

How does a VPN work?

Generally, when you're connecting to some website, your device sends a query to your ISPs DNS server asking for its IP address. Then, your ISP routes your request to the website's server. When your device crunches the data, it displays a website with videos and pictures once it fully loads. This is fast, but it leaves a lot of traces of what you were doing online. So, over time, ISPs can harness quite a lot of information about their users.

regular-internet-connection

When you subscribe to a VPN service, you're entering an agreement to borrow their infrastructure. Such services own a large volume of servers, so even though your traffic is still routed through your ISP, it's encrypted. The VPN uses a tunneling protocol to connect to your selected remote server. However, this time you're not connecting directly.

How does a VPN work diagram

The end website receives a different IP address than your own, and your ISP can only tell that you're using a VPN, but it doesn't know what you're doing. That way, your privacy becomes protected by a veil of shadow.

Yes, VPN usage is legal in most countries. However, some of the places that prohibit or restrict VPN usage are China, North Korea, Iraq, Belarus, UAE, Egypt, Turkey, and Russia. In such locations, you should check whether VPNs are legal (or only restricted) beforehand, and what are the consequences of using one.

In other parts of the world, whether you want a VPN for streaming or keeping your data private from prying eyes, it’s perfectly safe to use it. That said, illegal activities don’t become legal with a VPN. This means that pirating copyrighted content, hacking, or cyberbullying don’t suddenly become acceptable just because your data is encrypted.

What are the limitations of a VPN?

Although VPN is a good tool to make your connection safer, this doesn't protect you from all possible dangers. Your connection will indeed be much safer with them, but if you enter your personal information on some sketchy website, your data will still end up in someone's hands.

You can still download malware when using a VPN, as they aren't intended to check your files. So it still matters to exercise proper cyber-hygiene when visiting websites, even when using a VPN.

Be mindful of your browser if you're using an outdated app that has Javascript vulnerabilities. This could also be used to inject malicious code into your system, which is also a cause for concern. Keeping your daily applications and installing important security updates is paramount.

How do I get a VPN?

If you prefer a DIY approach, you can rent a server somewhere far away and then self-host a VPN for yourself. You'd need a cloud hosting provider and some technical know-how.

For everyone else, there are VPN service providers. These are businesses that are lending their server fleet for a monthly fee. Here’s how to get a VPN:

  1. Choose a VPN service provider and purchase a subscription. NordVPN now offers a 68% discount.
  2. Download, install the client, and log in.
  3. Establish a connection by picking any VPN server of your choice.
  4. Now, you have a VPN installed and active on your device.

You can minimize the VPN to the background so it doesn't interfere with your browsing. However, if you head online to check your IP address, it would display a different one as if you actually were teleported to a foreign country.

Can I use a VPN on mobile devices?

Yes, you not only can but you should always use a VPN on mobile devices. Since we often use them to access the Internet, it poses similar risks as laptops or other devices that aren’t connected to a VPN.

For instance, we connect our phones to public wifi. In such cases, data encryption can help prevent malware distribution or personal data theft. It can also secure your financial data and audio (or video) conversations from third-party peeks.

The best VPN providers for mobile devices offer comprehensive security of your personal information. Yet, it’s worth noting that mobile VPN apps are slightly different from desktop ones. What was initially promised on desktop might not be present on the mobile app. So you should always check before purchase.

Can VPN services be trusted?

All VPN providers claim to have no-logs policies, but this isn't often the truth. There are many reports of a no-logs VPN service which leaked its users' private information after a major data breach. So, even if you're not paranoid, it may be a bit hard to trust such claims.

Users expect increased privacy and complete peace of mind when choosing a VPN. However, we discovered data from several mobile VPNs leaked online during our research. Some of the most popular Android VPNs, such as SuperVPN, GeckoVPN, and ChatVPN, have been discovered to log massive amounts of user information. Usernames, email addresses, payment-related data, password strings, and more were all logged.

There are plenty of safe and trustworthy VPN services, but it's essential to choose wisely and not go for an untested option: using unreliable VPNs can do you more harm than good.

Here's what you should look for in a reliable VPN service:

  • Independent audits. If a service had its no-logs policy audited, it's a good chance that a VPN is trustworthy. Agencies like PwC are multi-million dollar industries that are outside the scope of bribery. So, if they're saying that a VPN adheres to privacy policy claims, you should probably take note.
  • Court cases. There's no better method to prove its privacy policy claims than their response to the law requests. If a VPN service collaborates with law enforcement and shows up in court with a list of logs, don't think that it would be different in your case.
  • Ownership. You should always take into account the owners of a VPN service. Chances are they manage several other products and look into how they are managed. Were there any data breaches or privacy scandals? This may also help to form a perspective on how your data will be treated.
  • Privacy policies. You should carefully review what the policy includes and what information it collects. The less data it gathers, the more privacy you're ensured.
  • Privacy-friendly headquarters. Some countries belong to the 5-Eyes, 9-Eyes, or 14-Eyes alliances. They are known to share personal data of their citizens and even attempt to force tech companies to provide them encryption backdoors.

Video review: Best VPNs of 2022

Free vs. Paid VPNs: which is the best for you?

In general, paid VPNs are better than the free ones. The latter have to rely on ads and selling your data (which is not always anonymized), unless they are offered by a premium VPN provider. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t find a good free VPN – it’s just that they will have one or more limitations that often are a deal-breaker.

The most common free VPN limitations are as follows:

  • Speed. Most free services are slower than paid ones. While you might be able to stream in full HD using some VPNs, expect a serious drop-off in speeds.
  • Servers. Free VPNs usually offer only a few servers in the US, the Netherlands, and some other countries. Also, those servers tend to be overloaded and have high latency, which is bad for gaming and VoIP calls.
  • Data limit. Freemium VPN services will often give you a certain amount of GBs per month or MBs per day. Therefore, downloading large files or streaming high quality videos will soon leave you blocked until next month.
  • Number of devices. Expect to get only one connection per account. This means that you won’t be able to use a free VPN on both your computer and your smartphone.
  • Geo-blocking and P2P. You won’t be able to access worldwide content of Netflix or other streaming platforms with most free VPNs. What’s more, some of them also prohibit torrenting, especially if they don’t have a data limit.

If you choose a solid paid VPN, you won’t have to deal with the issues listed above. You won’t see any ads either, and your data won’t be sold to third parties. Also, you can expect priority customer support which will solve most of the problems right away.

What's the fastest VPN?

When we're talking about the VPN speeds, we're actually factoring in several different things.

  • The distance from your location to a VPN server to your device
  • The used tunneling protocol
  • The VPN server's load
  • Your baseline Internet speed

Even time of the day could also be an important factor. All of this makes the evaluation for the fastest VPN that much more challenging.

We usually calculate the drop-off speeds in our reviews and comparisons compared to the baseline speed test results. So the faster VPN is the one that reduces your baseline speed less. Here is the list of top 5 fastest VPN providers from our list with the WireGuard tunneling protocol:

VPNAverage US download speed
NordVPN273 Mbps 🏆
IPVanish252 Mbps
Surfshark246 Mbps
Atlas VPN239 Mbps
PureVPN202 Mbps

FAQ

Comments

changezi
changezi
prefix 1 year ago
As far as I know all of these VPNs are little bit expensive. So, in my opinion FastestVPN will be the reasonable choice instead of them. They are also providing free cloud storage for 1 year and the complete price of the lifetime package is around $20. its a complete solution for those who are looking for a free storage as well as VPN.
Angelina Jolie
Angelina Jolie
prefix 1 year ago
I can see that Nordvpn allows 6 devices with their subscription. I have a question. If I set up vpn on a router would it count as one device or is it however many devices are connected to the wifi? many thanks.
Rūta Rimkienė
Rūta Rimkienė
prefix 1 year ago
Hello! A router counts as one device. However – all the devices connected to that router don’t count anymore then. This means that you can use the VPN on as many devices as you want while using your wifi!
Pou
Pou
prefix 1 year ago
All the picks look decent, you might as well choose by the color. Which of these VPNs have a dark mode feature? I’m not a fan of the bright green / purple colors.
Rūta Rimkienė
Rūta Rimkienė
prefix 1 year ago
Hello! You can either try Surfshark or VyprVPN, as both of them offer a dark mode.
boy yough
boy yough
prefix 1 year ago
hey! thanks for the comprehensive list. i’ve tried multiple vpn providers over the years and based on my experience best rated vpn is not necessarily the best for each user. sure it’s the overall easiest to recommend, but you must consider your needs and use case first.
mauve
mauve
prefix 1 year ago
thanks for all the vpn reviews. I’ve read a bunch of them on your page and I feel a lot more confident and smarter about my future choices! finally out of the woods 🙂
Eazyy
Eazyy
prefix 1 year ago
CyberGhost is one of the best VPN available currently, it’s surprising to see that their owner has a ‘poor reputation’. Where could I read more about it? Thanks for any info
Rūta Rimkienė
Rūta Rimkienė
prefix 1 year ago
Hi, thanks for the comment! If you want more information on the current owners of CyberGhost, you can read about Kape Technologies.
Dion
Dion
prefix 1 year ago
These same vpn providers seem to be everywhere, nordvpn, Surfshark, expressvpn, pia and vypr. Do you have the list of best vpn services from last year as well? Is that the same or any different? I’m interested in fluctuations, just out of curiosity. Seems like no one can beat these giants.
Rūta Rimkienė
Rūta Rimkienė
prefix 1 year ago
Hello, Dion! Our Best VPN list gets constantly updated, which means we don’t currently have the older versions.
lily
lily
prefix 1 year ago
I heard that the best VPN with no DNS leak is NordVPN. I have it and I often test it using DNS leak test websites. However, although I trust they’re pretty good with their technology, maybe there are more ways to check for DNS leaks or maybe even be alerted if that happens? Many thanks!
Rūta Rimkienė
Rūta Rimkienė
prefix 1 year ago
Hi, Lily! The best way to check for DNS leaks is the one you’re currently using, which is testing via leak test websites. If you want to be 100% sure you don’t leak, simply use NordVPN’s DNS on your computer. You can find the instruction on how to do it here.
chief
chief
prefix 1 year ago
Even though I’m using vpn, I heard that it actually matters which countries you connect to. What do you think is the best vpn server location and does it have any impact? I mean, it should all be encrypted anyway right?
Rūta Rimkienė
Rūta Rimkienė
prefix 1 year ago
Hello, thanks for the comment! If all you need is encryption, then it doesn’t matter which country you connect to, as the level of security will be the same. However, keep in mind that servers that are located near you (in your own country or a neighboring country) will provide you with better speeds. The location of the server truly starts to matter when you want to unblock content from a certain country (the US Netflix, for example).
Bob
Bob
prefix 1 year ago
Rūta Rimkienė, I request that you’re review process includes this simple test of split-tunnel. I just spent hours trying out recommended VPNs only to discover they all fail on split-tunnel.
Step 1) Using split-tunnel, select Chrome as the only app to use VPN.
Step 2) Connect to a VPN on the other side of the planet.
Step 3) Observe if ping times have jumped because the packets are now routed to other side of planet.
None of the VPN’s (NordVPN, ExpressVPN, SurfShark) have working split-tunnel implementations. This should be a minimal test that VPN reviewers should use to prove out implementations.
Rūta Rimkienė
Rūta Rimkienė
prefix 1 year ago
Hi, Bob, thank you for your comment! What kind of ping testing tool were you using? From what we’ve discovered, the “ping” command on Command Prompt doesn’t take split tunneling into consideration. You should try doing that with tools like Speedtest if you want accurate results.
Saxx
Saxx
prefix 1 year ago
Thank you for the article! How secure and reliable can VPN services be considered? As far as I know, users ‘ personal data is still stored on the servers and therefore their owners can always access it.Is it true? Is it possible to consider decentralized ecosystems such as Utopia p2p https://u.is/en/ for example, where data is not stored on a third-party server, more secure? In addition, such ecosystems are usually completely free of charge.
Rūta Rimkienė
Rūta Rimkienė
prefix 1 year ago
Hi, Saxx! None of our mentioned VPNs store personal information, so there’s no reason to worry. You can also use a VPN (like NordVPN) that operates on RAM-only servers that get completely wiped out after every reboot.
Christopher
Christopher
prefix 1 year ago
Is Surfshark the best VPN for multiple computers? I live in a big family, and we have 4 laptops, one PC, and a couple of phones. I want a VPN that could allow all those devices being connected at the same time.
Rūta Rimkienė
Rūta Rimkienė
prefix 1 year ago
Hi, Christopher! You’re totally right – Surfshark is a great VPN for the whole family, as it offers unlimited simultaneous connections. In addition, it supports all of the devices you mentioned.
roman
roman
prefix 1 year ago
Please, tell me the best small business vpn solution. I’m planning to work with sensitive data – photos, and an extra level of security is needed. What vpn would be the best for it? We will be sending photos to clients, and I’m afraid that while doing that hackers can steal them.
Rūta Rimkienė
Rūta Rimkienė
prefix 1 year ago
Hi, Roman! You can try NordVPN, as it has a small business solution called NordVPN Teams. It offers a high level of security and great speeds – perfect for sending photos online.
Alek
Alek
prefix 1 year ago
I’m going to China for a half of a year soon. I’ve read a lot about banned apps, restrictions and many other crazy stuff. Please, suggest the best vpn for travel to China. I need it for a half of a year, so I want it to be relatively cheap, and be effective in unblocking apps.
Rūta Rimkienė
Rūta Rimkienė
prefix 1 year ago
Hello, Alek! If you want a cheap VPN that works in China, you can give Surfshark a go. It may bypass the restrictions thanks to the Shadowsocks proxy. You can also try ExpressVPN, which uses Stealth servers to unblock websites for those who reside in China. It might have a higher chance of working, however, it’s more expensive.
bobbiez
bobbiez
prefix 1 year ago
ProtonVpn only
Caleb
Caleb
prefix 1 year ago
For me, best vpn that allows torrenting is Nordvpn. You simply select  P2P server and you are ready to go. The speed is very impressive and fast. I think it’s because of the latest new protocol implementation.
Nick
Nick
prefix 1 year ago
Hello! Can you suggest best vpn service in USA? I am planning on unlocking American Netflix, so I’m looking for a fast vpn, with good unflagged ips. I am aware that Netflix constantly detects usage of vpn. Also, since it will be my first experience using a vpn, I want it to be cheap. 
Rūta Rimkienė
Rūta Rimkienė
prefix 1 year ago
Hi, Nick! In your case, I would use NordVPN, as it unblocks the US Netflix library and is pretty cheap (from $3.30/month).
Nick Hudson
Nick Hudson
prefix 1 year ago
Hello there,

I want to buy a VPN for streaming and gaming. I have shortlisted these VPNs. What’s your opinion about these:
– Pure VPN 86% off on 10 devices for 5 years.
– Nord VPN 68% off for 2 years.
– Express VPN 35% off for 1 year only.

TIA
Mindaugas Jancis
Mindaugas Jancis
prefix 1 year ago
Hey Nick, sorry for the late reply. ExpressVPN is pricey, so you should pick it only if you really like it. PureVPN can be really cheap if you’re not afraid to commit for five years. However, I’d suggest NordVPN for streaming and gaming because it has the best speeds, thanks to the WireGuard protocol. What’s more, it’s capable of unblocking most streaming platforms.
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