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The Best Free and Low-Cost VPN Services for 2016

by Tracy Knauer •

Want to browse privately using a VPN without signing up for an expensive plan? Here’s a list of the best low-cost and free VPN providers.

It goes without saying that, in the VPN world, you generally get what you pay for. VPNs that are free or inexpensive lack advanced features. Their performance is also usually not as good as that of more costly options. And some of them don’t have especially good privacy polices.

But if you only need basic privacy guarantees, and if you don’t use a VPN all the time, the following companies are good choices as free or low-cost VPNs.

Best Free VPN

HotSpot Shield stands out as the best free VPN provider. With this VPN, you definitely get limited service. Data usage is capped at 750 megabytes per day (or 250 megabytes on Android), performance can be spotty and only the most popular operating systems are supported. HotSpot Shield also lacks a no-logs privacy policy. But it works, and it’s free. Few other VPN providers fall into both of those categories.

(There is also a paid version of HotSpot Shield called HotSpot Shield Elite, which costs about $2.50/month. It has better performance than the free version and no data cap, but we don’t think it’s as good a value overall as the VPNs listed below.)

Best Low-Price VPNs

If you’re willing to pay a little bit for a VPN but don’t want to break the bank, these are good options:

  • Private Internet Access (PIA): With prices starting at $3.33/month, this is also one of the least expensive VPNs available. You get a lot for that price — up to 5 connected devices, support for pretty much every OS, a huge (3,000+) network of servers and no data cap. PIA also has a good privacy policy. (See our complete Private Internet Access VPN review here.)
  • Privatoria: With prices as low as $1.90/month, Privatoria is one of the most affordable paid VPN companies. Performance is not excellent, but it’s better than a free VPN, and there is no data cap. Privatoria is definitely a great option if you want a more reliable VPN than a free service but still want to keep cost to a minimum. (See our complete Privatoria VPN review here.)

Comments 3

  1. Hello
    What is your opinion about Avira’s Phantom VPN?
    (and if we use anonymous mail for registeration.)
    Thank you

  2. I would like to research the entire notion of VPN, that is the why, and the need , and the function, and the source provider. It is an entirely foreign and new concept to me, and I question the what , why, and need.

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