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Best VPNs with port forwarding


VPN port forwarding enables bypassing the NAT firewall to access your device remotely and speed up internet connection. It is especially important for hardcore gamers and torrenting users who seek better performance and reliability.

Unfortunately, for safety reasons, not many VPNs offer port forwarding. After all, it can decrease your device’s security levels if not used properly.

So which VPN offers the best port forwarding solution? And how to use this feature safely? Continue reading to learn everything you need to know and find the list of the best VPNs with port forwarding.

Top 5 best VPNs with port forwarding feature

inga_valiaugaite_author Nijolė Simaitienė copywriter at Cybernews sarunas karbauskas vincentas
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Recent updates
After reevaluating the VPNs on this list, I’ve changed the lineup and placed Proton VPN as the best VPN with port forwarding. The providers’ descriptions were updated to include relevant, up-to-date information. I’ve also updated the guide that shows how to configure port forwarding on a VPN by including relevant screenshots.

The best VPNs with port forwarding – detailed list

Together with the research team I reviewed the features, prices, and privacy policies of 42 high-quality VPNs. I also tested their port forwarding features and speeds. You can find the in-depth results of our first-hand experience down below.

1. Proton VPN – the best VPN with port forwarding in 2024

ProtonVPN banner
Port forwarding:
Yes
P2P support:
Yes
Simultaneous connections:
10
Current deal:Get up to 55% OFF Proton VPN!

Proton VPN is the best VPN with port forwarding. It offers a fast service for Linux and Windows users, who can enable it in the Advanced Settings section. It’s also very convenient as you can copy the port number from the information panel at the top of the main window when you connect to a P2P server.

Performance. Proton VPN uses the WireGuard protocol – one of the fastest and most secure tunneling protocols on the market – which explains its excellent speeds. During in-house Proton VPN tests, the provider maintained 85% of the original connection speed, making it a great VPN for gaming.

Torrenting. This VPN is also a great pick if you’re looking for a torrenting VPN since it supports P2P connections for premium users. With the paid plan, you get P2P-optimized servers for a better torrenting experience.

Features. Proton VPN comes with an array of impressive features. My favorite is the double VPN (Secure Core) feature that does exactly what the name says – connects you to two servers to ensure top-notch privacy. Also, you get the alternate routing feature which helps combat censorship by looking for alternative connections. A few other important features to mention are NetShield (ad blocker), VPN Accelerator, and Proton Pass (a password manager that’s included for free).

Privacy. Proton VPN is no different from other best VPNs on this list in terms of privacy – it doesn’t collect your online activities or IP address. Plus, its privacy policy is independently audited, so the provider has proven the VPN is reliable.

Customer support. Proton VPN has an extensive knowledge base that provides you with guides on how to use the port forwarding feature. And while there’s no 24/7 live chat, you can contact support agents through email or even tweet them your issue.

You can find the best Proton VPN deals on our coupon page. This VPN is not the cheapest, with prices starting at $4.49/month. However, you can connect up to 10 devices and use a 30-day money-back guarantee.

2. PureVPN – low-budget VPN with port forwarding

purevpn
Port forwarding:
Yes
P2P support:
Yes
Simultaneous connections:
10
Current deal:Get PureVPN, now 82% OFF + 2 FREE months!

Another top contender for the best VPNs with port forwarding is PureVPN. Its port forwarding add-on (that comes at an extra $1.49/month) gives you a much easier setup option than manual router configuration. All you have to do is install the VPN, get the add-on, and enable/disable ports.

Performance. PureVPN provider supports one of the fastest protocols called WireGuard. Being a great combo of speed and security, it’s no wonder that it helps with the VPN’s performance. Unfortunately, PureVPN isn’t the fastest. During in-house testing, I tracked around 67% speed retention on average.

Torrenting. While not all servers support P2P connections with PureVPN, plenty of them do. The only servers that don’t allow P2P connections are those in countries where torrenting is prohibited, such as the US and Canada.

Features. PureVPN features include a functional and trustworthy kill switch that disconnects you from the internet if your VPN connection drops. You also get a traffic obfuscation feature that hides the fact you’re using a VPN. Just like Proton VPN, PureVPN also integrates a password manager called PureKeep.

Privacy. This VPN is the first always-on audited service, meaning the privacy policy can be audited at any time. The provider doesn’t collect your browsing activities, IP address, or any other data, and while some billing information is stored, you can pay anonymously with cryptocurrencies to guarantee complete privacy.

Customer support. You can find port forwarding setup guides in the PureVPN knowledge base. For more issues, you can contact the team of professional support agents through the 24/7 live chat or email.

With our PureVPN coupons, the prices start from as little as $2.14/month, and you can connect up to 10 devices. A 31-day money-back guarantee is applicable as well.

3. Ivacy VPN – secure VPN with port forwarding

Ivacy VPN banner
Port forwarding:
Yes
P2P support:
Yes
Simultaneous connections:
10
Current deal:Get Ivacy VPN, now 88% OFF + gift!

Ivacy VPN is a great VPN with port forwarding for people who want a low-cost yet very secure solution. The port forwarding feature comes for an additional $1/month and can be easily set up from the member area.

Performance. Ivacy includes WireGuard as its primary protocol, but I was quite impressed by the average speed retention rate during in-house tests – Ivacy VPN retained around 81% of the original speed. Without a doubt, that will be enough for all torrenting or gaming operations.

Torrenting. Ivacy VPN is a good VPN for torrenting considering it allows P2P connections on all of its servers and ensures great speeds.

Features. Ivacy VPN provides you with the Secure Download feature. It checks your downloads for malware. There’s also a kill switch that works efficiently and prevents data leaks. On the downside, this feature is not available for macOS and iOS users, so if you want your connections private, I recommend picking Proton VPN instead.

Privacy. This VPN keeps no logs, which means it won’t track your browsing activities, IP address, or other data. Plus, the provider accepts cryptocurrency payments, so you don’t have to leave any traces of your data behind.

Customer support. Ivacy VPN has plenty of information about setting up port forwarding on the knowledge base. The provider also offers 24/7 live chat and email support in case you have any issues.

You can take a look at our Ivacy VPN coupons – the prices are very low, starting from $1.17/month (for up to 10 simultaneous connections) when buying it for 5 years. There’s also a 30-day money-back guarantee, so you can use the time to test port forwarding without instant commitments.

4. ExpressVPN – fast VPN with port forwarding

ExpressVPN banner
Port forwarding:
Yes
P2P support:
Yes
Simultaneous connections:
8
Current deal:Get ExpressVPN, now 49% OFF + 3 months FREE!

ExpressVPN is another great VPN with port forwarding because of its great functionality and remarkable speeds. The port forwarding feature is only available for setting up on v1 or v2 (and upward) routers. You’ll have to either install the firmware or invest in a router that’s compatible with this VPN.

Performance. ExpressVPN uses a proprietary Lightway protocol which is part of the reason for the VPN’s excellent speeds. During in-house tests, the average speed retention rate turned out to be 77%. That’s more than enough for a smooth gaming or torrenting experience if you have a speedy internet connection.

Torrenting. Together with great speeds, ExpressVPN also allows P2P connections on all of its servers, making it a great VPN for torrenting.

Features. A very useful feature of ExpressVPN is Device Groups. Using this feature, you can assign different devices to different locations, which enables you to game or torrent using one VPN location while your family and friends can browse using a different one. Other useful ExpressVPN features include Threat Manager, Stealth servers, and also a password manager.

Privacy. According to ExpressVPN’s privacy policy, it’s a no-log VPN. It means that your data won’t be collected or logged by this VPN in any way. The fact that the policy is audited only strengthens its credibility. ExpressVPN also operates on RAM-only servers, adding extra to the privacy and security of your data.

Customer support. If you have any trouble with setting up port forwarding, ExpressVPN’s knowledge base is of great help. And if the issue is more complex, you can make use of the 24/7 live chat or email tickets.

The cost of ExpressVPN starts from $6.67/month. The price is on the higher side and you get to connect only up to 8 devices to the same account. Fortunately, there’s a 30-day money-back guarantee available, so you can test this app before you decide whether or not it’s worth the investment.

5. PrivateVPN – simple-to-use port forwarding VPN

PrivateVPN banner
Port forwarding:
Yes
P2P support:
Yes
Simultaneous connections:
10
Current deal: Get PrivateVPN, now 85% OFF!

PrivateVPN is an excellent VPN for port forwarding because of how simple it is to use the feature. For starters, it's always enabled, and you get a random port number that you can insert into the program you want, including a torrenting client.

Performance. PrivateVPN doesn’t use WireGuard but it includes the OpenVPN (TCP and UDP variant) protocol. With the UDP variant, during PrivateVPN testing, the VPN retained around 30% of initial connection speeds. This is the worst performance out of all providers on this list.

Torrenting. PrivateVPN allows and supports torrenting on all of its servers. However, considering the speed results, you might have trouble with slow torrenting.

Features. PrivateVPN comes with a market-standard yet functional kill switch that prevents accidental data leaking. You also get the Stealth VPN feature which hides the fact that you’re using a VPN.

Privacy. The privacy policy of PrivateVPN states that the provider keeps no logs of your browsing activities or other data. And while the policy isn’t audited, PrivateVPN doesn’t have any reputational issues regarding data handling.

Customer support. If you need any assistance with setting up or using PrivateVPN’s port forwarding feature, the provider has plenty of support channels. This includes a 24/7 live chat, email, guides, and FAQs.

You can get PrivateVPN for as low as $2.00/month when getting a 3-year subscription (up to 10 devices). Check out our PrivateVPN coupons for best deals. Like with most providers, you get a 30-day money-back guarantee as well.

How we selected and tested these VPNs

With help of the research team, I tested dozens of VPNs with the port forwarding feature and their performance. Here are all the things I took into consideration when ranking the VPNs:

  1. Port forwarding feature. I only included VPNs that offer a port forwarding feature that is easy to set up.
  2. Speeds. It’s natural that VPNs will slightly slow down your speeds. Yet, the fastest VPNs shouldn’t do it too visibly. That’s why when ranking these VPNs, I tested their speeds and, for the most part, only included the fastest solutions.
  3. P2P support. When getting a VPN with port forwarding, users are often looking for a better torrenting experience. That’s why all of the VPNs on my list support P2P connections.
  4. Security. All VPNs of my choice protect your data with the powerful AES encryption. They also all offer advanced security measures, such as a kill switch.
  5. Privacy. Since the purpose of VPNs is to hide your data from prying eyes, a no-logs policy is a must. My selected VPNs don’t keep any logs of your data.
  6. Customer support. Port forwarding may be more difficult to figure out how to use, so an always-available customer support team is necessary.
Expert comment
Security advocate and senior tech writer

Comparison of the best port forwarding VPNs

Here’s how my top 5 VPNs with port forwarding compare to one another:

VPNPrice (lowest price per month)
Port forwardingP2P supportServers
Proton VPN
$4.49✅ Yes✅ Yes5200+ servers in 91 countries
PureVPN$2.14✅ Yes✅ Yes6500+ servers in 65 countries
Ivacy VPN
$1.17✅ Yes✅ Yes5700+ servers, 55 countries
ExpressVPN
$6.67✅ Yes✅ YesServers in 105 countries
PrivateVPN
$2.00
✅ Yes✅ Yes200+ servers in 63 countries

What are the reasons to use VPN with port forwarding?

Port forwarding is something not many VPNs offer but it’s a truly useful feature. Here are some of the reasons to use a VPN that includes port forwarding:

  1. Torrenting. Even if a VPN has P2P support, its NAT firewall can interrupt your torrenting experience. Additionally, port forwarding allows incoming connections to be made to a specific device, which can result in better torrenting speed and reliability.
  2. Online gaming. Port forwarding allows hosting your own game server for a gaming session with your friends. Plus, this feature may even reduce lagging as well as improve performance.
  3. Remote access to your desktop device. Port forwarding can help access your desktop remotely because it lets incoming connections be directed to a specific device on your network.
  4. Remote access to IoT devices. Just like with remotely accessing your computer, you can also check on your IoT devices, including security cameras, when you’re not at home.
  5. Hosting a publicly accessible website on your device.

How to configure port forwarding on a VPN

Configuring port forwarding doesn’t require much effort after you install a VPN. Here’s a quick step-by-step guide on how to configure port forwarding on your device:

  1. Sign up for a VPN that includes the port forwarding feature – I recommend Proton VPN, now 55% OFF
  2. Download and install your chosen VPN service on your preferred device
  3. Enable the port forwarding feature Proton VPN port forwarding
  4. Connect to a P2P server (in this case, marked with a double-arrow icon) Proton VPN P2P servers
  5. Enjoy the benefits of port forwarding

How to configure port forwarding on a router

If you want to set up port forwarding on your whole network, the process will be slightly longer. It will also differ depending on your router. You can find the steps to setting up port forwarding on your router below:

  1. Insert your router’s IP address into the URL bar of your browser
  2. Sign into your router’s configuration interface. If you don’t know the username and password of your router, you can simply look it up on Google. All you have to know is the router model number (change the password as soon as you log in)
  3. Search for the port forwarding section (it can usually be found in the Settings menu)
  4. Fill in the information to create a new port forwarding rule
  5. Enable port forwarding on the service where you’ll use the port, such as a torrenting client

Why do not many VPNs have a port forwarding feature?

The reason many VPNs don’t provide you with a port forwarding feature is because it may decrease your security level. This defeats the purpose of a VPN in the first place.

VPNs use NAT firewalls to block malicious connections. Meanwhile, when you enable port forwarding, it opens a door through the firewall rules. This decreases security and privacy levels. It may even open up your device or personal network to outsiders, including cyber criminals.

However, NAT firewalls are a very strong protection measure. And port forwarding is useful when the firewall blocks connections that the user doesn’t want to be blocked. For instance, it may disrupt your torrenting experience and P2P connections.

Using a VPN with port forwarding: things to consider

While port forwarding is a rarer feature in VPN feature arsenals due to security concerns, you can still use it safely. Here are a few things to consider before enabling port forwarding:

  • Employ a trusted VPN. Use port forwarding with a trustworthy VPN – I recommend Proton VPN, now 55% OFF.
  • Always update your device. Hackers are always looking for a chance to get into your device. Updating your device in a timely manner may stop malicious actors from exploiting vulnerabilities
  • Turn on your antivirus. Antiviruses help prevent hackers from getting into your device. They also assist with stopping malware from spreading to your whole network
  • Use strong passwords. Update weak login credentials with unbreakable passwords
  • Don’t use port forwarding on many devices. Once you get used to port forwarding, it may be tempting to use it for many things. We strongly advise against doing so. The more surface you expose, the more likely you’re going to experience a cyberattack

Can you use a free VPN with port forwarding feature?

No, I don’t recommend using a free VPN with port forwarding. It’s a premium feature, so if it comes with free services, free service providers may be unreliable. Free VPNs need to make money somehow, so unreliable ones can end up selling your data.

Instead, you can opt for premium VPNs and make use of their money-back guarantees. This way, you’re going to get a trustworthy service that will provide you with advanced security and features.

  1. Proton VPN – set up port forwarding and enjoy great speeds. Pricing starts at $4.49/month for up to 10 devices, and you can make use of the 30-day money-back guarantee.
  2. PureVPN – enjoy port forwarding and a high-quality VPN for 10 devices simultaneously. Pay from $2.14/month or use a 31-day money-back guarantee available.

Conclusion

Port forwarding is a useful feature for gamers and torrenting folks. It can ensure better performance, improve reliability, and make the experience more smooth. The feature is also used for remote access to your own devices, including IoT.

My top choice is Proton VPN. You can set it up on Windows and Linux, and with P2P optimized servers, you can enjoy great speeds. The provider supports up to 10 connections simultaneously, and during in-house tests it demonstrated great speed and performance results.

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