Need to stream just one last episode from your series while traveling? Looking for a quick search on the best international streaming services? In most cases, some platforms you’re looking for might not be available where you’re located. You need the best VPN to change your IP address to access them. However, it’s common for users to look up the best free VPNs they can use for a short time. We’ve got just the list for you!
Although I should note that as tempting as any free VPN seems, it cannot be compared to a premium VPN. Free VPNs come with limited bandwidth and slower connection speeds. They offer access to only a few geo-restricted streaming services, apps, games, etc.; you get the gist.
So, before heading to the list of the best free VPN services in 2022, check the quick rundown below on the top 3 premium providers with free VPN trials and a risk-free money-back guarantee.
Premium free VPN services that are the best
When we talk about premium-free VPNs, we don’t mean completely free. They each offer a free trial that you can use for free with secure features, high-end encryption, and fast speeds. You can even use these VPNs for a short time to unblock the best geo-restricted streaming services successfully. They are:
- ExpressVPN – is the best top-rated VPN in the market. It offers 3000+ servers in 94 countries, AES 256-bit encryption, a Kill Switch and other premium features. It comes with a 7-day free trial and a 30-day risk-free trial that you can hack. Plus, with one ExpressVPN subscription for the 1-year plan, you get 3 months FREE.
- Surfshark – best for users who want unlimited device connections. It gives you 3200+ servers in 95 countries, military-level encryption, GPS Spoofing, Ad-Blocker and more. Plus, you can use the VPN for free during its 7-day free trial or hack one with its 30-day money-back guarantee. Save 81% on its 2-year plan.
- NordVPN – offers the best security and privacy features. Has the most extensive coverage of 5400+ servers in 59 countries. It also offers a SmartPlay DNS proxy to add on devices that don’t support VPN apps. Even if you need to use the VPN for free, there’s a 7-day free trial and a risk-free 30-day money-back guarantee.
5 Best free VPNs in 2022
Using a free VPN is alright, specifically if it’s only for a day or week. However, even the best free VPNs sometimes offer you access for less than a week. It all depends on the amount of bandwidth allowed. Because free VPNs are limited, we’ve listed premium VPNs on top, with ExpressVPN being the best right now.
However, if you’re dead set on using a free VPN service, we recommend only the best and safest. They are:
ProtonVPN is rated as the best free VPN because it is truly free, apart from its premium plan. The best part is that the VPN comes with unlimited bandwidth, which means you can use it for as long as you want. The speeds are good enough, so you wouldn’t have to expect buffering issues, even though it’s common in most free VPN plans.
Another unique find about this free VPN provider is that there are WireGuard and OpenVPN protocols, currently some of the best. Other than that, there’s a Kill Switch, Split-Tunneling, and leak-protection, which you won’t even find on some premium VPNs. However, with every free VPN service, there’s always a setback; for Proton VPN, it’s the servers. There are only 100+ servers in 3 countries to connect with: the Netherlands, the US, and Japan.
This means you can only get access to services that are located in these regions. However, a perk, according to me, is that there is a US server. This is great considering most users want access to US-based streaming services, apps, or websites.
Another best free VPN is Windscribe. It offers a premium plan but also a free version of its app. In this free VPN plan, you get far more servers than ProtonVPN. It has servers in 14 locations spread in 10 countries (US, Canada, UK, Hong Kong, France, Germany, Netherlands, Switzerland, Norway, and Romania.)
The speeds are pretty fast, so you won’t encounter buffering issues while streaming on UK Netflix or BBC iPlayer. Plus, it helps bypass ISP speed throttling, which is usually not seen even in some of the best free VPNs.
Again, every free VPN, no matter how great, always comes with a catch. The catch is that Windscribe only offers 10GB bandwidth a month compared to the premium version. With that said, you can probably watch around 10-15 movies monthly if you need the VPN for streaming.
Next on the list of best free VPNs we have PrivadoVPN. This provider is often overlooked, which is why most netizens haven’t really heard of it. We chose Privado because it unblocks and works with Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Disney+, and a few other streaming services.
This is great, considering most VPNs do unblock it. Where servers are concerned, PrivadoVPN free plan offers servers in 9 countries, which is less than Windscribe but still good enough.
Again, just like Windscribe, PrivadoVPN too, allows only 10GB of data a month. However, you could always use 1Mbps via its Dutch emergency server if you run out of it. Besides that, this free VPN can be used only one 1 device at a time.
Forth on the list of best free VPNs, we have Atlas VPN, newly acquired by the famous NordVPN. It might not be better than most of the free VPNs on the list, but it’s alright for limited usagehttps://www.topvpnservice.com/reviews/atlas-vpn/.
Just like Windscribe, Atlas VPN offers around 10GB data a month, but if you’re using the VPN on your Mac, there’s an allowance of 2GB a day. You can use this free VPN service to unblock limited geo-restricted streaming services by changing your location.
However, if we talk about changing your IP address, there are only three servers in two countries (Netherlands, and US – LA or New York.) The speeds are just okay, good enough for limited streaming or browsing.
Last on the list of the best free VPN we have TunnelBear. It has the best server coverage in 49 countries compared to the other providers on the list. However, not all work reliably to unblock the best streaming services.
For instance, I did not get access to Netflix when I tested the VPN’s free app. The speeds are good enough, but the free VPN app only comes with 500MB a month. What sets TunnelBear apart from the other VPNs on the list is that it allows up to 5 multi-device connections and comes with AES 256-bit encryption and other perks.
Why you need a VPN
You can’t possibly hope to make the right choice when it comes to securing a good VPN if you don’t know why it’s so important in the first place. A virtual private network, or VPN, helps maintain your digital privacy while you browse the web by encrypting your data. Thus, anybody trying to snoop on your internet connection in order to learn more about you from your data will have their efforts thwarted.
The many benefits provided by VPNs are effectively guaranteeing their widespread adoption around the globe. Particularly in areas of the world riddled with authoritarian governance, VPNs are one of the only reliable means of accessing the internet without letting your digital guard down. They can be confusing to figure out if you’re not very tech-savvy, however, so it’s worthwhile to read up on common VPN error codes to determine what’s wrong in the event of a technical failure.
Now that you understand VPNs, why should you bother getting one? VPNs prevent other people from learning about your true identity, which means it’s hard for them to ascertain your geographic location whenever you use a VPN.
This way you can access websites that your government has made inaccessible. VPN also lets you access online streaming from wherever you are in the world.
This is bad for services like Netflix because it and many other companies use geolocating services to determine your location (and thus your legitimacy as a customer) before allowing you access to their servers. If someone in Pakistan is trying to use an account with American credentials, for instance, it would be a sign of a potential account breach and enable Netflix to crack down on that illegitimate user.
Some VPNs get caught by Netflix, others can get by just fine flying under the radar with new IPs. It is thus essential to find the right VPN for Netflix to ensure you remain digitally secure while also enjoying access to your films.
You’ll want to constantly be asking yourself how you intend to go about getting around Netflix’s security, largely because the streaming giant is absolutely dead-set against anybody using a VPN on its platform. You may thus find yourself compelled to review updated guides on thwarting Netflix’s VPN policy now that 2022 is here, but know that you’ll constantly need to solicit new information as the company’s policy changes and VPN providers respond to those changes.
VPNs can be confusing for the average user given the dozens of services in the market. Not all VPNs are created equal, they vary both in the number of features and price. Users tend to gravitate towards free VPNs because they don’t cost anything.
Functionality is subject to change
It’s imperative to realize that nothing is ever set in stone now that we’re in a digital age. A product or service which works in January may fail come February, as newfound digital advancements could thwart a once-successful VPN service. This is to say that it’s important to realize that your VPN provider may not always work, as a service that is free may prove to become a lackluster means of access in the future.
Still, some free VPN services are running right now and they get the job done. Hotspot Shield is incredibly popular because it offers you fantastic access to Netflix servers on multiple devices regardless of where you find yourself situated around the globe.
Alternatively, Windscribe is one of the most popular VPN providers on the market for a wide variety of reasons. Using its free option will get you only 10GB of usable bandwidth. While you can stream a couple of movies in 720p, it’s not ideal for streaming 1080p or 4K movies online; it will get you by just fine for accessing blocked websites.
Usually, VPN websites point out, however, and as we’ve covered, functionality is subject to change when it comes to VPNs. Similarly, any of the VPNs covered in our blog here may suddenly change, and so too may the configurations of any VPN provider change without forewarning, so you may have to do some research before accessing the streaming sites that you’ve come to know and love.
FAQs – Best free VPNs
Which free VPN is best?
The best free VPN is currently ProtonVPN, PrivadoVPN, Windscribe, Atlas VPN and TunnelBear. They can be installed on some popular devices but come with limited servers and speeds.
Are there 100% free VPNs?
Yes, ProtonVPN and Windscribe are 100% free VPNs. However, it’s better to use a premium VPN with a free trial for the best results and performance.
How do I choose which free VPN to use?
To choose the best free VPN, you need to look for one that offers a multi-device allowance, fast speeds, access to geo-restricted services that are easy to unblock, and that offer reasonably good bandwidth.
When might a free VPN not be a good choice?
A free VPN should only be considered if you want to use it for limited purposes like simple browsing or streaming. It’s not advised to use for accessing banking apps or social media accounts. This is because we’re not sure how safe it is for it.
You get what you pay for
It’s thus important to remember that when it comes to VPNs, you really get what you pay for. Cheap or free VPN providers may be able to allow you access to websites but they’re less likely to be reliable and consistent when you need them the most. Providers like Surfshark help you gain unrestricted access in a secure fashion.
Sometimes, spending money is worth it, but you’ll always need to consider your own personal situation. Having a lackluster VPN can enable ISPs and streaming companies like Netflix to determine your location and identity. If you’re found violating their policies, it’ll lead them to take action against you. It’s why only the best VPN is recommended.
You should also know that you’ll usually see an increase in latency when using any VPN service. This is to say that your internet connection may slow down. This happens because VPNs necessarily require decreased download and upload speeds in order to fulfill their core function – ensuring your privacy. If the movies or television shows you stream thus appear slightly delayed, that could be a result of your VPN increasing your overall latency.
Try not to get frustrated by this slowdown – it may not be pleasant, but it’s effectively required for your VPN service to work. If it’s particularly annoying, just remember that without a VPN, you’re rendering yourself vulnerable to the wide world of companies or other nefarious actors who seek out your personal information for one reason or another.
For those facing harsh geo-blocks which prevent them from accessing Netflix due to their country of origin, spending some time reading up on overcoming geo-blocks is essential towards streaming successfully. You could always wait until your desired content becomes available elsewhere, but your favorite shows or movies may be spoiled in the meantime, and that can tarnish your entire consumer experience.
Knowing how to use a VPN isn’t something everybody is familiar with, but it’s a simple process these days. Just download the free VPNs we have mentioned and get going, just be careful of your data limit.
Just in case you’re on a budget and require a VPN that’s affordable, make sure you check this page for the best deals and discounts on VPN services.