Top 6 (REALLY FREE) VPN Services 2018
There's a reason free VPNs don't cost any money — you usually pay with something else (Malware/limited data/ads). Of the 100+ free VPNs that we've tested, we came up with 6 that we recommend. We'll also tell you how you can get the most expensive VPN for free... Share
VPNs are one of the best options for protecting your privacy, encrypting your data, and changing your geolocation.
Premium services are much better at providing secure, private, geoblock-free Internet access. And, unfortunately for users, these services often cost money.
Thankfully, there are some VPN providers out there that are FREE to use, and don’t come with any serious limitations.
What’s the catch?
There is no such thing as getting something for nothing, and a free VPN is no different. As with any free service, you’ll end up paying for it in one way or another. We tested over 100 free VPN services and some of the issues we came across were relatively minor, such as limited data or a slow connection, which makes streaming and a torrenting a problem. We also came across more serious issues that included bad encryption, targeted ads, and a breach of privacy.
We did find several VPNs that proved to be both reliable and trustworthy. They are by no means perfect, but they will get the job done for free.
So, if you are taking a three-day trip to Russia and need to be able to access content that is censored, there are some free VPNs that can do this without having to worry about privacy issues or malware.
We found that VPNs are also great for occasional use, for example, if you want to encrypt your data while you’re on an unsecured network. Sure, they might not have a server in every country, but chances are you don’t need a server in Nicaragua.
So it’s not all bad news! We’ve done the hard work for you and reviewed the free VPN options on the market right now in order to bring you an accurate list of the best free VPN services to suit your needs.
The list below contains the best features of our favorite free VPN services. It goes without saying that each free service has compromised on something, whether it’s speed or data allowance. But for free services, you can’t do much better than these:
With ExpressVPN You Can Get the Most Expensive VPN for Free
At $12.95 a month, ExpressVPN is actually one of the most expensive VPNs that we’ve tested. So why are we listing it here with the free VPNs?
If you’re only looking for a VPN for a short time, for example you’re going to Russia or China for a week or two and want to bypass the strict online censorship, or you’re leaving the US for a few weeks and don’t want to miss out on your favorite Netflix movies, then we have the hack for you.
ExpressVPN offers a 30-day money back guarantee, no questions asked. So, you can sign up for the overall best VPN we’ve tested, and as long as you cancel within a month, it’s totally free. You won’t be disappointed. Don’t believe us? Check out what real users have to say about ExpressVPN.
If you see that you like it, and want to continue paying for the service, we recommend you click this link, and we’ll show you the discount page that they have hidden deep in the bowels of their website.
- Fastest VPN, compatible with all devices
- Avoid the Netflix Geo Block
- Kill Switch and Data Leak protection
- Great option for China and other censorship-heavy locations like Russia and Turkey.
- Connect to 148+ locations in more than 90 countries
- Fully refundable if you’re not satisfied!
- No option for an entirely free service
A super popular VPN, HotSpot Shield offers a great free version that will get you 500MB per day. While you can only connect it to one device, it works well if you need to unblock a website or protect your data.
You can only connect to one server in America, and that server will not work on Netflix, Hulu, or other popular streaming sites, but you can still access YouTube, Facebook, and all of your favorite social media sites.
- 500MB free per day
- Email support
- Strong data encryption
- Works on all major devices
- Only one device allowed on the free version.
- Comes with ads to buy the premium version.
- Can only access Netflix, Hulu, and other streaming sites with the premium version.
The ultimate in ‘VPN services for beginners’, TunnelBear is arguably the most user-friendly of the lot, although its free subscribers are limited to just 500 MB of traffic each month. Not sure if it’ll be enough for you? Find out about real user experiences here.
TunnelBear was recently purchased by McAfee, and now has the additional resources that come with a major corporation to continue developing top-of-the-line security and privacy upgrades to their VPN
- Free VPN with no IP or data logging
- Over 22 million users worldwide
- Works on all major devices
- Offers an extra 1GB per month (on top of the starting 500MB) when you tweet about the company
- Simple to use
- Suitable for light downloads and video streaming
- The monthly data limit is less than ideal
- Very few advanced settings
- After the McAfee purchase, they are under US jurisdiction
This Malaysia-based VPN provider has over 30 available locations across the world and is very popular. However, its free version narrows your server choice down to Singapore, Canada, and the Netherlands.
- Wide range of security protocols offered
- Decent connection speed for a free vpn
- Not part of the 5/9/14 Eyes Alliance (This is good for your privacy.)
- 2GB limit on data usage each month
- Ideal for privacy in public hotspots or basic content unblocking (in the available free locations)
- The 2GB limit, while generous, still isn’t enough for prolonged bouts of streaming and other data-heavy activities
- Free version is limited to 3 locations without any servers in the US, the UK, Australia, or Eastern Europe.
Windscribe is one of the best free VPNs out there. While its adblocker and firewall can be a little aggressive, Windscribe’s generous data allowance and proper privacy commitment easily make it one of our top free picks. It’s also incredibly popular.
- 10 GB of data a month for the free VPN product (there is also a premium product)
- Great speeds and variety in free server locations (US, Canda, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway, Romania, Switzerland, UK)
- Doesn’t store connection logs, IPs or visited sites
- Offers an extra 5GB if you tweet about the service
- Earn an extra 1GB each time you refer a friend
- Built-in adblocker and firewall
- Custom “stealth” protocol is handy for bypassing geoblocks and censorship in China.
- Free users don’t have access to all the servers
One of the newest free VPN services to hit the market, ProtonVPN is operated by experts who already proved their dedication to cybersecurity with ProtonMail. This makes their privacy features some of the best on the market. It also has lots of fans.
- No bandwidth caps on data
- Access to servers in the Netherlands, Japan, USA, and Switzerland
- No logging
- Stylish, intuitive interface
- Free version is deliberately slower to encourage upgrading to paid packages.
Update: OperaVPN is shutting down its Android and iOS app on April 30th. You can read more about it here. However, while the mobile app is no longer available, Opera still offers a built-in free VPN with their web browser. You can find out what real users think of Opera here.
- Free web-browser with a built-in VPN
- Change your IP address without a problem.
- Built-in ad-blocker
- Limited to your activity on the browser
- Does not support torrenting
- Mobile VPN app no longer available
You see there are several decent options when it comes to free VPNs and the “catch” is just sacrificing some of the services, speeds, and security that you’d get with a premium subscription based VPN. If that works for your needs, then great! Download one of the choices above and enjoy the security benefits that they offer.
If however, you feel that you need complete protection, or wish to avoid the geo blocked Netflix shows and movies from anywhere in the world, then you may want to invest a few dollars a month and upgrade to a premium VPN service.
If you decide to go that route, you won’t find a better value for your money than NordVPN , for less than $3.00 a month you’ll recieve access to thousands of servers, top-of-the-line security protocols, access the US Netflix library and much more.
Check out our VPN deals page (updated weekly) where you can grab a top-shelf VPN for dirt cheap!