VPN Recommended

NordVPN, SurfShark and ExpressVPN on Windows

Virtual Private Networks are one of the cool things about the internet in recent times. They are a network of devices and servers that protect you from untrustworthy hotspots, allow you to bypass geographical restrictions on sites, and watch or stream content anonymously.

Since there are lots of VPNs, choosing one out of the pack could give you a tough time. What was meant to be a quick selection process now has to involve several layers of checks. To help you out in your search, the following VPNs are the recommended ones from us:

1. ExpressVPN

Features

  • Number of servers: More than 3,000
  • Speeds: Unlimited
  • Server locations: 160 in 94 countries
  • Maximum devices supported: 5
  • 24 live chat: Yes
  • 30 day money back guarantee: Yes

Pros/Cons

  • Fastest VPN out there
  • Strict no logs policy
  • 256-bit AES encryption
  • Few discounts

For many years, ExpressVPN has been known to be one of the top VPN providers in the industry. It delivers outstanding performance on virtually any feature you are looking for in a VPN, which is one of the reasons why it has made this list of our recommended VPNs. But let’s dig deeper, and find out what exactly is special about ExpressVPN.

Starting with its numbers, this VPN is the complete package. Founded in the British Virgin Islands in 2009, ExpressVPN has well over 3000 servers in 160 locations and 94 countries. This means that there are at least 20 servers on any continent you find yourself. You’ll hardly see a VPN that provides such huge numbers like ExpressVPN.

Secondly, the VPN has one of the best security systems in the industry. The industry-leading AES-256 encryption is used as the first layer of security, but that’s not all. ExpressVPN keeps users protected with its TrustedServer technology, Zero-knowledge DNS, and automatic network kill switch, which will protect your data even when the connection drops.

For its protocols, the widely used one is OpenVPN because it quickly connects to networks and websites. However, you also get to choose between IPSec and IKEv2. Not all of these protocols are available in every city, so you’ll have to do a check first.

ExpressVPN is one of the easiest-to-use VPNs on this list of our recommended VPNs. You can opt for a 15-month plan and get three free months or a 6-month plan that costs $9.99 per month or the monthly plan that costs $12.95 every month. In all three plans, you’ll have a 30-day money-back guarantee, so you can get your money back if you are not satisfied with the service. This guarantee can also be used as a free trial. So, even though you have to pay for the initial price of the VPN, you’ll get your money back if you request a refund within 30 days.

ExpressVPN allows you to connect five devices to a single account at a time while providing unlimited bandwidth in all of them. It defeats the throttling that your Internet Service Provider (ISP) puts in place, so you can bid video buffering goodbye when using the VPN.

To top all these great features, ExpressVPN receives many payment methods that include Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. Its reliable customer support system provides top-notch services while being available round the clock.

To us, it’s the perfect VPN to get.

  • Pros: Fastest VPN out there; Strict no logs policy; 256-bit AES encryption
  • Lowest price: $8.12

2. NordVPN

Features

  • Cryptocurrency accepted? Yes
  • Simultaneous connections: 6
  • Dedicated IP-addresses? Yes
  • Servers: 5342 in 58 countries

Pros/Cons

  • Lots of pricing options
  • Netflix support kept up to date
  • 256-bit AES encryption
  • Slow app

Coming in second on our list of recommended VPNs is NordVPN. It’s one of the famous ones around, despite its relative new entrance into the VPN industry. A look at its features is sure to keep you dazzled, so let’s jump right in.

If you need a secure VPN with features that will give hackers a hard time to crack, then NordVPN is one of the best options for you. Not only does it use the military-grade 256-bit encryption, but it also has a cool CyberSec feature that takes security and privacy to the next level. This feature blocks any suspicious website it comes across, as well as those annoying ads that’ll slow down whatever you are using the VPN to do. It’s also a useful measure to avoid botnet controls and DDoS (Distributed denial-of-service) attacks.

Still on its security and privacy features, you’ll get Double VPN (a feature that sends your traffic through two different servers) from this provider. As expected, it has a strict no-logs policy to ensure that your data doesn’t get into the wrong hands, as well as an automatic kill switch and DNS leak protection. Onion Over VPN, which is several VPN layers of protection, is another top security feature from NordVPN.

Moving on to its locations and number of servers will leave you amazed. NordVPN has 5333 servers in 59 countries of the world. In many of these servers, P2P is supported, and you can get a dedicated IP address that only you will have access to. All of these servers have lightning-fast speeds that make streaming a breeze. With them, you don’t have to worry about throttling from your ISP.

NordVPN can easily be gotten by downloading the app from your device’s store or through the link displayed on the official page of the VPN provider. However, you can also get a browser proxy extension on your device. One NordVPN account protects six devices, and the VPN can also be connected to a router.

Just as in ExpressVPN, NordVPN has a 30-day money-back guarantee that can be used as a trial. The VPN provider’s responsive customer support is always willing to help out when customers encounter technical issues, which is another reason why we have recommended it as one of the best.

If all these features don’t impress you, then NordVPN’s pricing should. On a 3-year plan, you’ll save as much as 70% while getting three months for free and paying only $3.49 per month. The 2-year and 1-year plans are also decent with 58% and 41% off, respectively. However, if you prefer a monthly plan, you can go for it and enjoy all these features for $11.95.

  • Pros: Lots of pricing options; Netflix support kept up to date; 256-bit AES encryption
  • Lowest price: $2.99

3. Surfshark

Features

  • Free trial? Yes
  • Simultaneous connections: unlimited
  • Ad blocking? Yes
  • Servers: 1000+ in 61 countries

Pros/Cons

  • No footprints
  • Allows torrenting
  • 256-bit AES encryption
  • Not the cheapest around

Surfshark is a recently launched VPN that has slowly risen up the ranks of the best VPNs to get. It has amazing features, but let’s start off with its biggest offer: unlimited device support.

In the other VPNs we’ve recommended, a number of devices can be linked to an account. But with SurfShark, that number has no limit. So, if you want to connect all the devices in your home to an account, you are welcome to do so. This is a freedom that few VPNs provide.

On its number of servers, SurfShark has a mind-blowing 1040+ servers in more than 61 countries. This means that irrespective of where you are abroad, you’ll find a SurfShark server to connect to. All these servers have decent speeds and are compatible with Mac, Windows, iOS, and Android devices. But that’s not all. Game consoles and routers can also be configured to allow SurfShark to be used on it.

A look at the VPN’s security and privacy features shows that it is one of the most decent ones to get. Whitelister allows selected apps and websites to bypass VPN connections and is a handy feature for banking. CleanWeb is also another exciting security measure that prevents malware, viruses, and phishing attempts from hackers. You’ll also not be disturbed by annoying ads when this feature is switched on.

SurfShark’s pricing policy should make you want to get this VPN by any means. It offers jaw-dropping prices and up to three months for free on its 3-year plan, which is billed at a rate of $1.77 per month, and you’ll be saving 85% by going for it. You can also go for its 12-month plan and save 50%. If you’d rather pay monthly, then it’s $11.95.

  • Pros: No footprints; Allows torrenting; 256-bit AES encryption
  • Lowest price: $1.99

4. UltraVPN

Features

  • One click connect? Yes
  • Platforms: Mac, Windows, iOS, Android
  • Bandwidth cap? No
  • Servers: 100+ superfast servers

Pros/Cons

  • Firewall
  • Apps for all devices
  • 256-bit AES encryption
  • Not as many servers as others

UltraVPN is a VPN from Network Connect, the brand behind PrivacyWeb and SafeVPN. The service has cool features, which is why it has made this our list of recommended apps.

Firstly, UltraVPN is a secure VPN to use. It comes with a 256-bit AES encryption, which should be difficult to crack by even the best hackers. To add to this layer of security, the VPN has a secure firewall that serves as a barrier between local networks. OpenVPN is the protocol run on the VPN. However, IKEv2 is another secure option. The VPN also has a kill switch to protect you when the connection fails and DNS leak protection to ensure that your identity is never revealed while you use the VPN.

On its speed and performance, UltraVPN is up there with the big boys in the game. The VPN promises no speed loss when connecting to servers as well as unlimited bandwidth that’ll allow you to use it without restrictions. Your videos will not buffer when using this VPN, and neither will your ISP throttle your connection.

UltraVPN has a good number of servers for its users to work with. It has 57 in North America, 17 in Asia, 20 in Europe, 9 in Africa, and 20 in South America. Enjoy safe connections when you connect to any one of these servers.

Just like other VPNs on this list, UltraVPN is compatible with the most popular operating systems. You can also connect it to routers and SmartTVs. And with one account, you can connect all the devices you’ve got.

Looking at its use in Point-to-Point sharing, we are quite impressed with the VPN. No IP leaks were detected, and a portfolio of servers are in place for torrenting. Its monthly plan costs $7.99, while its 6-month and 12-month plans is billed at a rate of $5.99 and $3.75, respectively. In any of these plans, you’ll get a 30-day money-back guarantee.

  • Pros: Firewall; Apps for all devices; 256-bit AES encryption
  • Lowest price: $2.99

5. ProtonVPN

Features

  • P2P support? Yes
  • 30-day money-back guarantee? Yes
  • Country of origin? Switzerland
  • Servers: 600+ in over 40 countries
  • Simultaneous devices: 5

Pros/Cons

  • Professional support
  • Modern interface and apps
  • AES-256 encryption
  • Lesser known provider

ProtonVPN comes in at number five of the best VPNs we recommend. If you’ve heard about ProtonMail before, then you should know what to expect from ProtonVPN. The same team that built the encrypted email service are the ones behind this VPN. Why does it make this list of recommended VPNs?

Located in Switzerland, ProtonVPN has useful privacy features that you’ll find in a lot of VPNs. It offers an excellent feature that protects against leaks. And when used with the automatic kill switch, there’s no passing through the VPN.

ProtonVPN uses the best encryption in the game, that is, AES-256, with HMAC SHA-512 authentication. The service runs with OpenVPN, but you also have the option of selecting IKEv2 when using the Android, iOS, and macOS apps. Both protocols are considered to be hack-proof.

Currently, the VPN has 577 servers in 44 countries. While these servers are distributed evenly around the world, their number is slightly lower than that of many VPNs. Nevertheless, you’ll hardly experience server congestion, and the servers can get as fast as 152Mbps.

Like we mentioned earlier, ProtonVPN is not based in any of the 14 surveillance countries but in Switzerland. This means that the privacy laws set by those areas do not apply to ProtonVPN. The VPN runs a no-log policy, so there’s no fear of your traffic being saved for future use.

ProtonVPN is very easy to use, and the VPN has an interactive dark-themed interface. When you register with a free account for the first time, you get a 7-day trial of its premium plan. After this period is over, you’ll have to choose a paid plan to continue enjoying its features.

ProtonVPN accepts Bitcoin and credit cards, and you can also pay with cash and PayPal. It has different plans named free, basic, premium, and visionary. Even though you can only connect five devices on the premium plan as compared to the ten allowed ones on the visionary, the former is the best offer. Stream and enjoy unlimited offers from ProtonVPN.

  • Pros: Professional support; Modern interface and apps; AES-256 encryption
  • Lowest price: Free

6. CyberGhost

Features

  • Connected devices at once: 7
  • One click connect: Yes
  • Automatic kill switch? Yes
  • Servers: 5900 worldwide

Pros/Cons

  • No logs policy
  • 24/7 live chat
  • Apps for mobile devices and routers
  • No free option

Slowly coming to the end of this list of recommended VPNs, we have CyberGhost in the sixth position. The VPN has an amazing number of servers, providing 5500+ in 90 countries of the world.

If you are looking for a private and secure VPN, then CyBberGhost has got you totally covered. Its Romanian jurisdiction, combined with its no-logging policy, prevents all forms of data leaks. And as an extra layer of security, CyberGhost offers a kill switch that will shut you off immediately your connection drops – the perfect Plan B.

CyberGhost is available on Windows, Android, Mac, iOS, and Linux devices, and it only takes a few seconds to have everything up and running. The VPN service supports OpenVPN, PPTP, L2TP, and IPSec, and you can connect 7 devices to a single account. There are also a few dedicated streaming servers if that’s all you want to do with the VPN.

We’ve talked about impressive money-back guarantees and free trials in the previous VPNs we’ve recommended, but CyberGhost reigns supreme in this category with its 45-day money-back guarantee.

On its pricing structure, the VPN is quite affordable. The 1-month plan costs $12.99 every month, and you’ll have a 14-day money-back guarantee. For the yearly plan, CyberGhost charges a rate of $5.99, and you’ll get a 45-day money-back guarantee. But the most desirable plan is its 3-year plan that costs only $2.75 every month.

  • Pros: No logs policy; 24/7 live chat; Apps for mobile devices and routers
  • Lowest price: $2.64

7. Trust.Zone

Features

  • Complete anonymity? Yes
  • Unblocking of all websites? Yes
  • Pricing options: 4
  • Servers: 164 in 80+ zones
  • Free trial: Yes

Pros/Cons

  • Military grade encryption
  • Bitcoin accepted
  • App for mobile devices
  • Lesser known provider

Lastly, we have Trust.Zone, a VPN whose name lets the cat out of the bag on what should be expected from it. The VPN allows you to use the internet anonymously, stops your ISP from tracking your activities, and protects you from malware and viruses. Trust.Zone is supported on iOS, Android, Linux, Windows, and Mac devices.

Its pricing structure makes it’s clear that this is one of the least expensive VPNs you can get from any store. You can try the service completely free for three days on one device, but only 1GB of data is available for you to use. If you prefer to pay every month, Trust.Zone will cost you $8.88. Its yearly plan costs $3.33 per month, and you’ll have access to unlimited data, and servers in 158 locations. But the 2-year plan is by far the most preferable with a price of only $2.88 every month, which means you’ll be saving 68% of your money.

Based in Seychelles, Trust.Zone is not required to handover data to any of the 14 eyes surveillance countries. Coupled with its AES-256 encryption and SHA256 authentication, your data and traffic will remain secure when you use the VPN.

  • Pros: Military grade encryption; Bitcoin accepted; App for mobile devices
  • Lowest price: $2.33

What criteria to look for in a VPN

You may be wondering how we came up with this list of recommended VPNs. Well, there are a couple of things to look out for in a VPN, and these include:

1. Number of servers: This is a non-compromising factor when looking for a VPN to opt for. Even if every other item is checked on the list, if you don’t have enough servers to use, you’ll be better off without the VPN. This is because of server congestion. If you have extra cash to spare, you can get a dedicated IP address, which implies that the address is unique to you. But if you don’t want to spend more, always ask the provider for the number and locations of their servers first.

The VPNs we have included in this list have impressive numbers, so you’ll be covered if you go for anyone of them.

2. Speed and Bandwidth: These are two sides of the same coin, and vital factors to look out for when getting a VPN. The latter is easy to measure since all that needs to be done is to find out from the VPN provider if there are caps or not. If there are bandwidth caps on a VPN’s plan, we strongly recommend you go for another because you’ll frequently be cut off when using them.

To get the actual speed of a VPN, you’ll have to carry out tests. If the VPN has a trial version, use it to find out what the average server speed is. Anything from 80Mbps is good enough to work with.

3. Security and Privacy settings: One of the top reasons why people use VPNs is that they allow you to browse anonymously and provide walls of security that are tough to bring down. Therefore, if the VPN you want to get doesn’t have sophisticated means of protecting you from malware, viruses, and hackers, then it is not recommended.

The industry-leading encryption is AES-256, so any VPN that uses any other encryption should not be your top pick. Protocols also play a huge role in ensuring the safety of your device, so be on the lookout for recent ones like OpenVPN, IKEv2, and IPSec.

4. Cost: We can’t pretend like the price of a VPN doesn’t matter. In fact, many people sieve out VPNs by starting with this factor. While we don’t recommend this action, we agree that you should go for an affordable VPN with impressive features.

There are two categories of VPNs: free and paid VPNs. On the list we recommended above, most of the VPNs are paid. This is the category we advise you go for because free VPNs offer so many security threats. They also do not block adverts, so they are really difficult to use.

We recommend that you opt for a long-term plan because the cost of the subscription for each month is usually discounted by many VPN providers.

5. Trials and money-back guarantee: Having the option of trying out a VPN is great, and so also is getting a money-back guarantee. Make sure the VPN you intend to get has one of these two.

6. Customer Support: If you don’t know your way around VPNs, you’ll likely experience technical issues once in a while. This is why having a reliable customer support system is essential.

The recommended VPNs above have round the clock support to help if you run into problems.

In conclusion

We now know that VPNs are very important since they can be used to access your favorite content even if you stay in a country that restricts you from viewing them. They are generally safe to use, and getting them running on your device should not be much of a problem for you.

In this article, we’ve included seven recommended VPNs. Each one has impressive features that you should look forward to using. We’ve also recommended some of the things to look out for when getting a VPN so you don’t go for the wrong one.

By combining these pieces of information, you have everything you need to get started with VPNs.