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Cheapest monthly VPNs in 2024


Finding a cheapest monthly VPN can be ideal for short-term needs like traveling abroad or testing out a service before committing long-term. I joined a team of experts to review 42 VPNs.

In this guide, I share which VPNs offer the best balance of cost and features, evaluate their performance in terms of speed and security, and highlight the pros and cons of each. Keep reading to discover the cheapest monthly VPNs and find the best option for your specific needs.

Monthly VPN plans prices analysis

In June 2024, I collaborated with a team of researchers to analyze the monthly pricing of various VPN services, focusing on the most affordable options. Our aim was to provide you with up-to-date insights into the current market trends for VPN pricing to help you make data-based decisions. For VPNs offering tiered pricing options, we chose the cheapest available plans, and all prices are presented in USD.

To help you easily understand our findings, I've summarized the data in the graph below. This graphical representation will give you a clear view of the pricing landscape, highlighting which VPNs offer the best value for their monthly plans.

A chart showing monthly prices of different VPN providers
June 2024. The graph provides an analysis of monthly VPN plan prices. The vertical axis shows the monthly price in USD, while the horizontal axis lists various VPN providers.

During my testing, I observed that most VPN services cost between $4.99 and $14.99 per month. Notably, Astrill VPN stands out as the most expensive option, charging a significant $30 per month. In contrast, Torguard is the most affordable choice, at just $4.99 per month. On average, the monthly cost for VPNs is approximately $11.27.

Popular VPNs like NordVPN and ExpressVPN fall in the mid-to-upper price range, with NordVPN priced at $12.99/month and ExpressVPN at $12.95/month. Surfshark offers a slightly lower rate at $10.99/month, providing a more budget-friendly monthly option without compromising too much on features and performance.

Several well-known VPN services, including Tunnelbear, Opera VPN, PureVPN, Avast VPN, and McAfee VPN, do not offer monthly plans, which could be a drawback for users seeking short-term VPN solutions without a long-term commitment.

My test results reveal a highly competitive market where many VPN providers successfully balance affordability with premium features. VPNs priced between $10 and $13 per month typically offer both value and efficiency.

Throughout my research, I identified NordVPN and Surfshark as top contenders, providing the best balance of cost and features. Their pricing reflects extensive server networks, robust security measures, and reliable performance.

Based on my findings, I've compiled a shortlist of the top VPNs with affordable monthly plans.

Top 5 best cheap monthly VPN plans in 2024

How we selected and tested these cheap monthly VPNs

When recommending VPNs, my primary goal is to provide options that offer the best value without compromising on essential features like security, performance, and user experience. While cost is significant, the top VPNs must meet high standards in other critical areas to ensure comprehensive protection and functionality.

First, I selected VPNs based on their monthly pricing plans. My list includes a range of premium, mid-priced, and affordable VPNs, ensuring there's something for every budget. This approach ensures that users looking for short-term commitments or those on a tight budget can find a suitable VPN without sacrificing quality. ​​Here are the main criteria I considered when testing VPNs and selecting the top cheap monthly VPNs:

  • Geo-block bypassing. To determine a VPN's capability to bypass geo-blocking, I evaluated the number of servers and their global distribution. More servers typically mean better access to geo-blocked content and improved connection stability. Each VPN was tested for its ability to unblock popular streaming services such as Netflix, BBC iPlayer, and Amazon Prime Video. When choosing the top VPNs, it was important to select providers that can offer access to streaming platforms and restricted websites from different regions without issues.
  • Security and privacy. Since security and privacy are paramount when choosing a VPN, I prioritized providers that use industry-standard encryption protocols like AES-256 to ensure data security. I also verified that the VPNs maintain strict no-logs policies, meaning they don't track or store information pertaining to user activities. I also tested such essential features as ad blockers, anti-malware protection, and a kill switch, which disconnects the internet if the VPN connection drops, to ensure user privacy is maintained.
  • Performance. Performance testing involves conducting speed tests to ensure the VPNs provide fast and reliable connections, minimizing buffering and lag — crucial for activities like streaming and gaming. The research team also evaluated the stability of these connections to ensure minimal interruptions during use.
  • Hands-on experience. I tested each VPN in various scenarios, such as streaming, browsing, and gaming, to assess their performance and usability. I only picked tools that were easy to set up and use for both beginners and advanced users.

By thoroughly evaluating these criteria, I identified the best cheap monthly VPNs that balance affordability with high-quality service.

Recent updates
With the latest update in June 2024, I've updated and fact-checked all pricing information to ensure our readers have the most current details. New diagrams for monthly plans have also been included to provide a clearer comparison.

Best cheap monthly VPNs – detailed list

I gathered a list of the best cheap monthly VPNs that don’t compromise security, speeds, and other factors for the sake of affordability.

1. NordVPN – best monthly VPN overall

nordvpn banner
Cheapest monthly price:$3.39/month
Servers/countries:6400+ servers in 111 countries
One-month pricing:$12.99/month
Current deal:Get NordVPN, now up to 72% OFF + free travel data!

NordVPN is the best monthly VPN, serving top-class security features for an affordable price. The monthly plan is available for $12.99/month, but for a more budget-friendly option, you can choose the 2-year plan at just $3.39/month.

All plans cover up to 10 devices, ensuring that your main home devices stay protected. NordVPN offers a 7-day free trial for its users. Plus, there's a 30-day money-back guarantee, which is great for trying out the service risk-free.

NordVPN monthly subscription includes the powerful NordLynx tunneling protocol, a reliable kill switch, and DNS leak protection to prevent accidental data leaks. All your information is encrypted with the currently best in-market AES-256 and ChaCha20 encryptions. Moreover, NordVPN proves safe by respecting privacy with a strict no-logs policy. It has been audited 4 times: twice by PwC and twice by Deloitte.

What I liked the most was that NordVPN provides blazing-fast speeds. Whether you’re a hardcore streamer or gamer, you will be able to watch movies or play games without lag or buffering. According to our in-house tests, NordVPN retains around 90% of initial speeds.

NordVPN is very simple to use, whether you’re using the Windows, macOS, Android, or iOS app. In addition, it’s a subscription-based VPN for FireStick, Android TV, Apple TV, and more. I find it great even for beginners because once you set the app up, all you have to do is press the Connect button. Plus, all of the features are placed in one section, making the app easy to navigate.

Overall, I suggest choosing NordVPN if you need the most powerful VPN available with cheap and flexible pricing plans.

2. Surfshark – affordable monthly VPN with exceptional speeds

Surfshark banner
Cheapest monthly price:$2.19/month
Servers/countries:3200+ servers in 100 countries
One-month pricing:
$10.99/month
Current deal:Get 83% OFF Surfshark + 3 months FREE

Surfshark is another great cheap monthly VPN supporting all your home devices. While the monthly plan price is slightly higher than other providers’ on my list ($10.99/month), its 2-year plan costs only $2.19/month.

Sufshark stands out for unlimited simultaneous connections, which is important if your goal is to share your plan with your friends or family. Additionally, you can use the 30-day refund policy if you need a VPN for only one month or just aren’t satisfied with the service. Plus, there’s a 7-day free trial available, making it even easier to test out the VPN before committing.

The Surfshark VPN feature set makes your data tough to hack, thanks to the strong AES-256 and ChaCha20 encryptions. Surfshark also has a strict no-logs policy, which has been independently audited by Cure45 and Deloitte.

With Surfshark, you also don’t have to worry about unstable connections. Even if the VPN accidentally shuts down, data leaks will be prevented with an automatic kill switch. Additionally, Surfshark consistently demonstrates blazing-fast connection speeds. On average, it retains around 86% of initial internet speeds.

I found Surfshark's additional features very useful. With the cheapest monthly subscription, you get an ad blocker and a cookie pop-up blocker, which significantly enhance the browsing experience. The Alternative ID feature is especially handy, as it allows you to create fake identities, including emails, for added security when websites request personal information.

Ultimately, Surfshark VPN is very close to NordVPN regarding performance and ease of use. So, in my opinion, it's perfect if you need something more affordable to protect unlimited devices.

3. Bitdefender VPN – competitive cheap prices and high-security standards

bitdefender-vpn banner image
Cheapest monthly price:$2.92/month
Servers/countries:4000+ servers in 53 countries
One-month pricing:$6.99/month
Current deal:Get up to 43% OFF Bitdefender VPN!

Bitdefender VPN stood out as the most affordable monthly option, especially since it includes antivirus software at no extra cost. Its cheapest plan costs $2.92/month, whereas the monthly plan costs just $6.99/month, making this service the cheapest 1-month VPN out of all top 5 providers.

The plan covers 10 devices, and there’s a 30-day money-back guarantee, a 7-day free trial, and a somewhat limited free version if you would like to test it freely.

From a security perspective, Bitdefender adheres to market-leading standards with AES-256-bit encryption, ensuring your data remains secure. With the recent WireGuard implementation, ChaCha20 encryption also has become available. It also has a functional kill switch, split tunneling, Double Hop, and even an ad blocker.

I appreciate that for its price, the Bitdefender VPN package offers great performance, where it retains 74% of initial speeds. However, I tried unblocking several streaming services, such as Netflix and Bitdefender didn’t provide great quality. I experienced a few buffering issues and struggles to load.

Bitdefender VPN comes from a company known for its great antivirus software. The Bitdefender VPN app works on macOS, Windows, iOS, and Android. It doesn't support Linux, browser extensions, or configuration on routers or other gadgets. If you need a VPN for Linux, consider using NordVPN.

When I tested Bitdefender VPN myself, I appreciated that apps are easy to use, even for beginners. I didn’t encounter any problems when connecting to servers or navigating through its additional features. Moreover, Bitdefender's apps look pretty much the same across all platforms, including mobile, which makes them extra easy to use on multiple devices.

Bitdefender VPN is great for people seeking an affordable monthly option with low-cost upgrades for premium features. But it might not be your best bet if you want a VPN that reliably unblocks many streaming services.

4. Ivacy VPN – provider with the best VPN monthly pay plan

Ivacy VPN banner
Cheapest monthly price:$1.17/month
Servers/countries:5700+ servers in 55 countries
One-month pricing:$9.95/month
Current deal:Get Ivacy VPN, now 88% OFF + gift!

If you’re willing to commit for the long haul – Ivacy VPN is a standout. More precisely, it costs merely $1.17/month if you opt for the 5-year plan. However, if you’re in search of a good short-term deal, Ivacy VPN covers you with a cheap monthly plan for only $9.95/month.

With Ivacy VPN, you will get 10 simultaneous logins, a 30-day money-back guarantee if something goes wrong, and a 7-day free trial to test out the service.

Ivacy VPN offers robust security with its AES-256-bit encryption and a strict no-logs policy, ensuring your data remains private and secure. Additionally, Ivacy provides split tunneling and a kill switch feature, available on Android and Windows. This is a big disadvantage, considering that top VPNs, like NordVPN, include a functional kill switch for all compatible operating systems.

Moreover, Ivacy VPN does not include ChaCha20 encryption like NordVPN, which adds another layer of security. While Ivacy's no-logging policy is a strong feature, it would be reassuring to see an independent review to validate these claims.

During our Ivacy VPN review, I spotted that the biggest downside to this VPN is that it lacks the WireGuard protocol. Instead, it uses OpenVPN. While this protocol is still good, Ivacy VPN comes slower than NordVPN or Surfshark. As a result, Ivacy VPN retains 32% of initial speeds on average.

Although Ivacy VPN is easy to use and navigate, the experience could have been better as the app sometimes feels laggy, blurry, or just not that good-looking. That said, it’s quite decent for the asking price.

Overall, Ivacy VPN’s extremely affordable monthly price has some drawbacks, such as the absence of WireGuard, but, in my opinion, the service would be good for short-term subscriptions.

5. Proton VPN – budget-friendly monthly VPN with a great set of features

ProtonVPN banner
Cheapest monthly price:$4.49/month
Servers/countries:5200+ servers in 91 countries
One-month pricing:$9.99/month
Current deal:Get up to 55% OFF Proton VPN!

Proton VPN is a solid choice for those looking for an affordable monthly VPN with a solid feature set. If you opt for a longer subscription, you get the best deal from $4.49/month. For a single-month plan, Proton VPN asks for a reasonable $9.99/month.

Like NordVPN, Proton VPN allows up to 10 simultaneous connections and offers a 30-day money refund policy. I like that it also has a free version, although a limited one: only one connection, reduced speeds, no access to streaming or P2P.

Proton VPN is a safe VPN that uses the fastest WireGuard tunneling protocol and AES-256-CBC, ChaCha20 encryptions with a SHA-512 hash function. Other features include a kill switch, NetShield Ad-blocker, and Tor over VPN. I was impressed with Proton VPN’s performance during my testing – it retained an impressive 85% of the original speed.

I like that Proton VPN is based in a privacy-friendly jurisdiction – Switzerland, and follows a strict no-logs policy. But I’m slightly concerned about the provider’s stance on privacy policy changes – it’s stated that the changes will be deemed as accepted if you continue to use the services. To be on the safe side, always enable privacy policy change notifications.

Proton VPN’s Windows app offers a wide array of features, providing numerous settings and tools. The interface is intuitive and packed with options. The macOS version, while slightly different, still includes all the essential security elements and is easy to navigate.

What stood out to me was Proton VPN’s mobile apps, which offer the same level of usability and functionality as their desktop counterparts. This consistency across devices ensures that whether I'm on my computer or mobile, I get a seamless and secure VPN experience.

ProtonVPN is a good choice for those seeking fast speeds and usability, but if you’re concerned about their position in privacy policy changes, I suggest opting for a more privacy-focused provider, like NordVPN.

VPNs’ monthly price comparison

The data in the table represents various VPN services, comparing their pricing to our best cheapest monthly VPNs. In the Lowest price per month column, you can see the cost per month when you choose the longest subscription period, which usually results in a cheaper monthly price.

VPNRatingLowest price per month1-month planNumber of serversMoney-back guarantee
NordVPN
4.9
$3.39/month$12.99/month6400+ servers in 111 countries30-day
Surfshark
4.7
$2.19/month$10.99/month3200+ servers in 100 countries30-day
Bitdefender VPN
3.9
$2.92/month$6.99/month4000+ servers in 53 countries30-day
Ivacy VPN
4.1
$1.17/month$9.95/month5700+ servers in 55 countries30-day
Proton VPN
4.2
$4.49/month$9.99/month5200+ servers in 91 countries30-day
ExpressVPN
4.3
$6.67/month$12.95/monthUndisclosed number of servers in 105 countries30-day
CyberGhost
4.2
$2.03/month$12.99/month11500+ servers in 100 countries45-day

If you're in it for the long haul, Ivacy VPN offers a steal at just $1.17/month for 5 years. But if you're new to VPNs and want to try before committing, Bitdefender has the best 1-month deal. Alternatively, you can check out top-quality VPNs like NordVPN and Surfshark, both offering 7-day free trials and 30-day money-back guarantees.

What makes the best monthly VPN?

The greatest monthly VPNs ensure the lowest prices and some of the highest quality. While most VPNs are pretty expensive for a single month, some are affordable and run below the $10/month threshold, such as Bitdefender VPN.

In case you need a short-term VPN, there's also an option to get one for free. While money-back guarantees do not apply to monthly plans, most providers include them with an annual subscription. So it's worth opting for yearly plans and claiming your money back before the end of the month if you're unsatisfied.

Of course, when looking for the best monthly VPN, you shouldn't only consider the pricing. It's imperative to get a VPN that has a reliable and secure connection. Also, you shouldn't compromise connection speeds for the sake of security. Cheap monthly VPNs should still provide fast protocols like WireGuard and a vast server fleet to ensure excellent performance. Even if the VPN is inexpensive, it should have a clear no-logs policy. Also, ensure it is either audited or has no prior reputational issues.

Why are VPN monthly plans so expensive?

The monthly plans of VPNs are usually more expensive because providers want you to buy them for a longer term. This way, they ensure you don’t switch to competitors or quit the service.

For such reasons, long-term subscriptions are often cheaper, making them more tempting. Plus, you can use the 30-day money-back guarantee or free trials before the month ends to try the service out.

Either way, there are some pretty cheap monthly VPN options, such as Bitdefender VPN. Its monthly plan costs only $39.99/month, and you will enjoy excellent security and privacy features.

Cybernews pro tip

Instead of getting a monthly plan, opt for long-term VPN subscriptions that include a 30-day money-back guarantee, such as NordVPN. This way, you can enjoy a month of VPN service free of charge!

Why buy a VPN for one month only?

You might consider buying a VPN for one month only for several reasons. Here are some of the cases when it’s useful to purchase a VPN for a month:

  • You’re going to travel. When traveling, people tend to connect to unsecured networks, such as public Wi-Fi hotspots. A monthly VPN helps to stay safe and private on your trip.
  • You want to unblock streaming platforms. Perhaps a new movie came out on Netflix but it’s unavailable in your country? A monthly VPN for streaming can help access the movie in no time.
  • You want to test the VPN out. If you don't want to risk it with an instant long-term commitment, you may consider getting a VPN for a month first. In such cases, it’s better to opt for annual plans that come with month-long money-back guarantees.
inga_valiaugaite_author Nijolė Simaitienė copywriter at Cybernews sarunas karbauskas vincentas
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How can I get a cheap monthly VPN subscription?

The best VPNs often compete in terms of pricing and the best discounts. So if you’re searching for the best cheap VPN with some generous offers, you won’t have to look long. Here’s the best way to get a cheap VPN subscription:

  • Long-term plans. Many VPN providers offer significant discounts for longer subscription periods. Look for yearly or multi-year plans, as they often bring down the monthly cost. A good example is the Ivacy VPN subscription, which is the cheapest when you go for a 5-year commitment.
  • Special deals and discounts. Keep an eye out for promotions, discounts, and special offers. VPN providers frequently run seasonal sales such as Black Friday, Cyber Monday, where you can grab your favorite VPN for cheap. Additionally, you can use VPN coupons that can lower the monthly price.
  • Referral programs. Some VPN services offer discounts or free months for referring friends or family. For example, NordVPN offers such an opportunity – by referring a friend, you get even 3 months for free.
  • Student discounts. Some VPN providers offer discounts for students. For example, with NordVPN, you can get a special discount for graduate, healthcare, teacher, student, military and other discounts. You just need to verify your status with the provided steps.
  • Free trials and money-back guarantees. Some VPN providers offer free trials where you can use all features without paying for a limited time to test performance and features. Money-back guarantees, usually lasting 30 to 45 days, also let you subscribe to a VPN service and try it out. If you're not happy for any reason during this period, you can request a refund and get your money back.

By applying these strategies, you can find a cheap monthly VPN subscription without sacrificing the quality and security you need.

Why should you consider a longer-term VPN?

Longer-term or even lifetime VPNs are usually cheaper than single-month plans, so the latter option is not worth it. For example, if you get a VPN for a month 12 times, it can cost you even 3 times more than getting the yearly plan.

If you really don’t want to commit for a year or two, there’s a simple solution. You can get the yearly plan of a VPN that provides you with a 30-day money-back guarantee. This way, you’ll be able to cancel the subscription before the month ends. You’ll basically have a month of service for free.

Conclusion

Finding cheap monthly VPN plans can be a true hassle. They’re usually way more expensive than the monthly prices of annual subscriptions. Another issue is that cheap VPNs often offer an unreliable service. This means that, on top of the price, you also have to consider the quality of service, which includes security features, connection speed, and other criteria.

The best part is that even if you choose a more expensive VPN, most offer annual plans with month-long money-back guarantees. So you can use it to test premium VPNs for free.

I gathered a list of low-cost VPN providers to help you get started on your reach for cheap monthly VPNs with great features. NordVPN has one of the best monthly plan prices starting from only $3.39/month on longer subscriptions and $12.99 for a single-month plan. It also offers a standard 30-day money-back guarantee. Plus, you’re guaranteed reliable connections, great speeds, and extra simple usability.

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