The world's best VPN providers may be less expensive than you thought. Download the right cheap VPN, and you can still enjoy enhanced security and privacy - as well as getting access to geo-restricted content like Netflix - without paying too much.
We're talking about cheap VPNs costing less than $2/£2 per month in some instances. And, despite the low cost, these affordable virtual private networks still benefit from watertight security, rapid server speeds and really straightforward user interfaces.
Even these cheap VPNs are effective at using their servers to make you appear somewhere you're not by giving you an IP address on a server of your choice, with many spread worldwide. They act as a kind of middleman and encrypts all traffic, so you're never seen by the wider internet meaning an extra layer of security - especially when you're on open Wi-Fi, like at hotels, coffee shops and airports, where your identity and data are even more at risk.
The best cheap VPN services at a glance:
- 1. Surfshark - from $1.99 a month
- 2. CyberGhost - from $2.75 a month
- 3. Private Internet Access - from $3.33 a month
- 4. NordVPN - from $3.49 a month
- 5. ExpressVPN - 49% off and 3 months free
Beyond security, a VPN is a great tool for allowing you to get around geo-restrictions. Say you're away from the US and want to watch your favorite TV streaming service, you might not have access when in Europe. A VPN allows you to appear in the US so you can still get access to all your favourite shows, no matter where you go.
While cheaper options have limitations in some cases, like fewer servers meaning fewer locations that you can appear from – on the whole they offer a lot. Security is still encryption level and most cheap VPNs will still have decent protocol options. App quality and compatibility may vary from service to service, of course. But what you will discover that every one of our picks below appear on our guide to the very best VPN services you can get today.
We've compiled a list of the best cheap VPNs so you can get what you need without spending top dollar to do so.
The best cheap VPNs today
Ridiculously cheap VPN that doesn't scrimp on quality
Number of servers: 1,700+ | Server locations: 100+ | Free trial?: Yes - 30 days | Maximum devices supported: Unlimited | Unblocks: Netflix, iPlayer, YouTube, Amazon, Hulu
Surfshark might not have been around as long as some of its competitors but what it lacks in age it more than makes up for in performance. This British Virgin Islands based service does undercut many providers on price but it doesn't scrimp on features – one of the most important being security.
Fire up Surfshark and you're protected by a barrage of security layers including OpenVPN UDP and TCP, IKEv2 protocols, a private DNS, double hop VPN using an AES-256 encryption, plus a kill switch. So pretty much all the security doors and windows are bolted and shut with double locks in some places. There's also a no logging policy so no data is kept on you anywhere.
Despite those heavy layers of security, the experience remains flighty fast no matter where you are in the world, thanks to around 2,000 servers spread across more than 100 locations.
A big draw here is the unlimited device connections, meaning you can use this on iOS, Android, Mac, Windows, Linux and even Amazon Fire TV – all at the same time. While the apps may be basic for some, they're super easy to use. As a result it's just two taps to have you up and running in any location you pick – ideal for watching geo-restricted content like BBC iPlayer when out of the UK, for example.
Thanks to great pricing and a 30-day money-back guarantee this is worth a worry-free trial before you commit.
Best cheap VPN with a lengthy free trial
Number of servers: 6,400+ | Server locations: 110+ | Free trial?: Yes - 45 days | Maximum devices supported: 7 | Unblocks: Netflix, iPlayer, YouTube, Amazon, Hulu
CyberGhost is a Romanian based VPN service that offers a staggering 6,000+ servers across more than 110 locations meaning you have lots of choice. Despite the spread of connection points, security is tight with a selection of protocols for you to pick from plus automated HTTPS redirection and optional data compression for when on mobiles.
CyberGhost works well at unblocking geo restricted content and can be setup on a router for use with all connected devices – although you are good for seven devices at once anyway. With support for torrents, something not all VPNs offer, the multi-device apps are most welcome with iOS, Android, Mac and Widows all covered.
A rather special 45-day money-back guarantee is a nice draw here and beyond that pricing stays low with great deals for longer term plans.
3. Private Internet Access
A cheap VPN all-rounder with quality apps
Number of servers: 3,300+ | Server locations: 65+ | Free trial?: Yes - 30 days | Maximum devices supported: 10 | Unblocks: Netflix, YouTube, Hulu
Private Internet Access is a solid VPN service that does everything well without costing you. That means a good selection of 3,300 plus servers in over 60 locations all supporting P2P torrenting and with apps for Mac, Android, iOS, Windows and Linux and 10 devices supported at once. What's nice is the ability to use configurable apps with pro features like SOCK5 port forwarding or to set the apps to give automatic protection when you access unsecured Wi-Fi. That protection includes a kill switch and this can even notify you with a vibrate when used with your phone.
Pricing has risen a little, but that's because this is a great service and with speeds above average making it worth looking into.
Double layer security for less
Number of servers: 5,400+ | Server locations: 80+ | Free trial?: Yes - 30 days | Maximum devices supported: 6 | Unblocks: Netflix, iPlayer, YouTube, Amazon, Hulu
NordVPN is one of the most secure VPN system in terms of security features. Of course there was a data breach but that appears to have made the provider double down on security since. And double is the operative word as this offers a double 2048-bit encryption meaning your data is super encoded when in transit. You also get strong DNS leak protection, two kill switches and the ability to pay via Bitcoin or PayPal.
Speeds are decent and features like SmartPlay make getting around geo-restrictions super simple. There are lots of payment options so there should be something perfect for you.
Hands down the best VPN out there
Number of servers: 3,000+ | Server locations: 160 | Free trial?: Yes - 30 days | Maximum devices supported: 5 | Unblocks: Netflix, iPlayer, YouTube, Amazon, Hulu
ExpressVPN is one of our favourite VPNs overall, which is why it's made this cheap list, despite being a little more rich in price than the rest. It's also rich in features with superb speeds across over 94 locations worldwide. All of that is backed by enterprise-level encryption and a wide selection of protocols for security. Plus there is a clear no-logging policy so you can rest easy knowing your data isn't stored.
The 24/7 live chat customer support is a huge appeal, allowing you to get online easily anywhere for whatever the task, even if you struggle. That's ideal for watching geo-restricted content at the fastest possible speeds.
Tom's Guide readers get a discount on ExpressVPN
Sign up for a full 12 months on ExpressVPN and you'll end up with 49% off the normal monthly price and 3 months additional coverage absolutely FREE. Try this with a 30-day money-back guarantee then pick from a host of savings by going for longer term plans.
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