Top 6 REALLY FREE VPN Services in 2018 -That Are SAFE To Use

There's a reason free VPNs don't cost any money - you always end up paying one way or another, whether it's limited data or speeds, annoying ads or even malware. We tested over 100 free VPNs, just to bring you this list of the ones that we personally trust. As a special bonus, we'll also show you how to get the most expensive VPN for free! Share

VPNs are becoming a necessity in today’s digital world. A VPN not only keeps you safe online by protecting your privacy and encrypting your data, it also allows you to change your geolocation so you can access blocked content from anywhere on the globe. Who wouldn’t want that?

Premium VPN services do a much better job at providing secure, private, geoblock-free internet access – but unfortunately, those services usually cost money.

You’ll be happy to know that some VPNs are FREE to use, and they don’t even come with any serious limitations.

What’s the Catch?

Well, there’s no such thing as a free lunch. We all know it all too well, right? The same can be said for VPN services – you always end up paying one way or another. You might be bombarded with pop-up ads or discover you can’t use your VPN for streaming or torrenting because your connection is excruciatingly slow or your data usage is extremely limited.

You might run into far more serious issues – some free VPNs will actually put your privacy at risk or sell your personal data to third parties.

We wouldn’t want you to have to put up with any of that, so we tested over 100 free VPNs to see which ones are the best of the best. We’re happy to say we found several that meet our strict security standards. Are they the perfect solution? Definitely not, but if you’re looking for a free VPN that can get the job done, you should be able to find one here that can suit your needs.

Free VPNs can be great for occasional use – maybe you just want to encrypt your data while you use public wi-fi, or you need to book a hotel room and want to see if you can get a better price if you connect to a server in a different country.

Maybe you’re planning a short trip to a censorship-heavy country and you need to be able to access blocked content without having to worry about privacy issues or malware.

Keep in mind that even with the best free VPN services, there’s always a compromise – whether it’s ads, slower speeds or limited data usage. If you can live with that, you’re going to love our list of the best free VPNs.

Insider Tip: This Is How You Can Get the Most Expensive VPN for Free

ExpressVPN isn’t a freebie – it’s actually one of the most expensive VPNs that we’ve tested. So why are we listing it here with the free VPNs?

If you only need a VPN for a short time – for instance, if 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, with a no-questions-asked policy. This means 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.

(By the way, NordVPN offers not only a 30-day money-back guarantee but also a 3-day free trial, and their monthly plan is cheaper.)

When your 30 days run out, if you feel that you don’t want to say goodbye to ExpressVPN,  click this link, and we’ll show you the discount page that they have hidden deep in the bowels of their website.

Here are some of the features you can enjoy for free in the meantime:

  • Easily unblocks Netflix from anywhere 
  • Advanced security options, such as a kill switch and data leak protection
  • A great option for China and other censorship-heavy locations like Russia and Turkey
  • Connect to 148+ locations in more than 90 countries
  • Complete privacy: ExpressVPN is based in the British Virgin Island, which means that they are not part of the 5-Eyes Alliance
  • Fully refundable if you’re not satisfied!

Get ExpressVPN FREE

Pro Tip:

Want to get a premium VPN for next to nothing? Don’t miss our Black Friday Deals page. You don’t even have to wait for Black Friday – there are some crazy deals going on right now!

Visit Black Friday Deals Page

 

1.  Hotspot Shield

A super popular VPN, HotSpot Shield offers a great free version that will give you 500MB per day. Obviously, this won’t be enough for streaming or torrenting, but if you just need to unblock a website or keep your data protected while using public wi-fi, it could be a decent solution.

The free version allows you to connect only one device, and you can use only one server in America – which will not work with Netflix, Hulu, or other popular streaming sites. You can still use it to access YouTube, Facebook, and other favorite social media sites that may be blocked. Plus, it’s compatible with all major operating systems, and it’s one of the fastest VPNs out there.

Free version pros:

  • Lightning fast speeds
  • Strong data encryption
  • Access to blocked content
  • Email support

Free version cons:

  • Limited to 500MB per day
  • Only one device
  • Comes with ads
  • Can only access Netflix, Hulu, and other streaming sites with the premium version

The paid version will give you unlimited bandwidth, access to over 2,500 servers in 25 countries and live tech support 24/7, and you can connect up to 5 devices simultaneously.

Get Hotspot Shield FREE

2. TunnelBear

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 (though you can get an additional 1 GB each month if you tweet about the company). 

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. Not sure if it’s right for you? Read about real user experiences.

Free version pros:

  • No IP or data logging
  • User-friendly interface
  • No popup ads
  • You can get an extra 1 GB each month if you tweet about the company

Free version cons:

  • Monthly limit of 500MB
  • Limited server access
  • Doesn’t work well with Netflix
  • Very few advanced settings
  • After the McAfee purchase, they are under US jurisdiction

The paid versions will give you unlimited data transfer and access to servers in over 20 countries.

However, if you’re going to invest in a premium VPN service, we recommend checking out some of the larger ones, such as ExpressVPN , NordVPN or CyberGhost , which can offer you higher speeds, access to a greater number of servers, and much more. They all come with a 30-day money-back guarantee, so you can try them out before you commit.

 

Get TunnelBear FREE

3. Windscribe

Windscribe, one of the best free VPNs out there, is definitely a user favorite. While its adblocker and firewall can be a little aggressive, Windscribe’s generous data allowance and commitment to privacy easily make it one of our top free picks. Not only does it allow 10 GB of data month, you get an extra 5 GB for tweeting about the service, and an extra 1 GB every time you refer a friend.

Free version pros:

  • Great speeds
  • Access to servers in over 10 countries
  • Doesn’t store connection logs, IPs or visited sites
  • Built-in adblocker and firewall

Free version cons:

  • Data transfer is capped
  • You don’t get access to all their servers

Get Windscribe FREE

4. Hide.me

This Malaysia-based VPN provider has over 30 available locations around the world and is very popular among users. However, the free version narrows your server choice down to Singapore, Canada, and the Netherlands and limits you to 2 GB data usage each month.

Free version pros:

  • Generous monthly limit of 2GB data transfer
  • Decent connection speed for a free VPN
  • Not part of the 5/9/14 Eyes Alliance (This is good for your privacy.)
  • No ads
  • No logging
  • Full customer support

Free version cons:

  • The 2 GB limit isn’t enough for serious streaming, torrenting or other data-heavy activities
  • Limited to three server locations – and doesn’t include any servers in the US, the UK, Australia, or Eastern Europe
  • No access to OpenVPN
  • Only one device per account

The premium version will give you unlimited data transfer and 5 simultaneous connections.

Downsides:

Get Hide.me FREE

5.  ProtonVPN

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.

Free version pros:

  • No bandwidth caps on data
  • Access to servers in the Netherlands, Japan, USA, and Switzerland
  • No logging
  • Stylish, intuitive interface

Free version cons:

  • The free version is deliberately slower to encourage upgrading to paid packages
  • As this is a new service, the number of servers and locations is limited and customer support is not as reliable as with other VPNs
  • No iOS native app. If you’re looking for a VPN for your iPhone or iPad, you should choose a different one

The paid versions will give you higher speeds and allow you to connect varying numbers of devices.


Get ProtonVPN FREE

6. OperaVPN

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 VPN pros:

  • Free web browser with a built-in VPN
  • Change your IP address without a problem
  • Built-in ad blocker

Free VPN cons:

  • Limited to your activity on the browser
  • Does not support torrenting
  • Mobile VPN app no longer available

Get OperaVPN FREE

Conclusion:

You see there are several decent options when it comes to free VPNs. However, free VPNs are not without their drawbacks and risks. If that works for you – great! Download one of the options above and enjoy the security benefits that they offer.

When you feel that it’s time to upgrade to a premium service, you should go with one of the best the market has to offer – such as NordVPN , consistently rated #1, which also offers a fully functional 3-day free trial.

 

Check out our VPN deals page (updated weekly) where you can find top-shelf VPNs for ridiculously cheap prices!

Here’s our pick of the top premium VPN services today:

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