Best Free VPN in 2021 – Free Trials & Best VPN Deals

VPNs provide users with a chance to surf the web privately and more freely. A VPN takes your data and sends it through an encrypted tunnel which hides it from your ISP and spies that may have accessed your network. Your IP address is also hidden, giving you extra online anonymity, and the ability to view geo-blocked content by using a new IP.

At VPNSurfers, we recommend the best VPNs based on security, VPN features, and value for money. There are paid-for or free options and the quality of service you get from each can vary greatly.

Although we usually advocate for using a paid-for VPN, since they are generally safer and more effective, there are many top free VPNs available at no cost. This means you can use a VPN without spending anything.

We’ve done the research on the best free VPN services so that you don’t have to. Here is a guide on the best free VPN services. Show more

Which is the Best Free VPN?

We’ve researched several free VPN providers to give our readers an in-depth look at the top free VPN services. A decent free service should have great privacy features and enable customers to carry out online tasks regardless of whether there is a data limit.

Here are our choices for the best free VPN apps.

#1

VPN Service: NordVPN

Max Speed: 115000 Mbps
Type of IP offered: Dedicated
Simultaneous connections / Users: 6
Number of Netflix Libraries: 12
Information sharing: None
OS support: Android, iOS, Linux, macOS, Windows
Using VPN on Smartphone
  • proiconUltra-fast connection
  • proiconNo-logs policy
  • proicon5400 servers in 54 countries
  • coniconLimited payment options
  • coniconNo Split Tunneling on desktop
  • coniconOnly 6 simultaneous connection

NordVPN

Although NordVPN isn’t technically a free VPN, it offers a 30-day free trial thanks to its money-back guarantee. With NordVPN, you can take advantage of excellent features like Double VPN and unlimited data.

  • 5,300 VPN servers worldwide
  • 30-day cooling-off period
  • 6 simultaneous connections
  • No-logging policy
  • Excellent customer support

With NordVPN, users can enjoy advanced security that free VPNs don’t offer. This includes AES-256 bit encryption, secure VPN tunneling protocols, a kill switch, and a snazzy feature called Double VPN. Double VPN sends your internet traffic via two servers instead of one.

As well as great security features, users can enjoy NordVPN across 6 devices simultaneously, on popular devices such as Windows, Mac, iOS, and Android.

A no-logging policy is present for users, meaning that all user activity and identifiable information is not monitored or recorded on the server network. This reassures users that they can enjoy the highest level of privacy at all times.

Should you face any issues whatsoever with NordVPN, you can take advantage of the excellent customer support on offer. There is 24/7 live chat, an email ticket system, and an extensive customer support section on the NordVPN website.

So, while NordVPN is not a free VPN service, users can enjoy the VPN for a month for free thanks to the risk-free refund policy.

Price Starting At: 3.29 $ / monthly 39.48 $ / annually
For New Users: 30 days free trial + 30-day money-back guarantee
Number of servers: 5400+
#2

VPN Service: ProtonVPN

Max Speed: 300000 Mbps
Type of IP offered: Dynamic
Simultaneous connections / Users: 5
Number of Netflix Libraries: 12
Information sharing: None
OS support: Android, ChromeOS, iOS, Linux, macOS, Windows
VPN on a Laptop
  • proiconNo-log policy
  • proiconUnlimited Bandwidth
  • proiconFree version available
  • coniconNo dedicated IP option
  • coniconOnly 5 simultaneous devices
  • coniconFew payment options

ProtonVPN

ProtonVPN is the product of Proton Technologies, a Swiss security company and offers the best free VPN. The VPN has a few paid versions of its VPN services and a free version for users who want to test out the product before paying for it.

  • Four payment plans, including a free VPN service
  • Military-grade encryption and advanced encryption protocol option
  • Unlimited data
  • Limited to one simultaneous connection
  • Strict no-logs policy

ProtonVPN is well known for its security features, and the provider employs the same level of encryption on its paid VPN and free plan. ProtonVPN is committed to protecting paid and free users’ privacy online, which is seen through its strict no-logs policy. ProtonVPN will never store free users’ activity logs and only stores a timestamp of each user’s most recent log-in, which is overwritten at the next VPN session.

When it comes to fast speeds, you can get these with a ProtonVPN subscription if you’re willing to pay a little extra. However, on the free plan, ProtonVPN clarifies that connection speeds will be a bit slower than on its paid versions. This is because free users only have access to three server locations, which means there is a higher user load on each one. This, subsequently, leads to slower speeds, despite the unlimited bandwidth that users get which many free VPNs fail to offer. The paid plans offer better speeds.

The servers that free users are in only three countries including the US, the Netherlands, and Japan. So, if you want a VPN that can unblock streaming sites in a different location in the world, you won’t be able to do so with ProtonVPN’s free version. Only paying users can get full access the full VPN server network to watch Netflix in other countries.

Speeds won’t be fast enough for gaming or streaming, and torrenting is completely blocked on the ProtonVPN free plan. It might be worth checking out Proton’s Plus plan if you want a VPN for any of the above reasons.

We really like that the ProtonVPN free plan doesn’t skimp on online privacy and security. It uses IKEv2/IPSec and OpenVPN protocols and provides users of its free plan with a kill switch to protect your online activity. There is also IPv6 and DNS leak protection, and ProtonVPN even has a split tunneling option on its free version.

You can use ProtonVPN on many devices such as Windows, Mac, Android, and Linux with excellent desktop clients and mobile apps that are easy to use for inexperienced users. However, there is only one simultaneous connection per free account plan.

Overall, ProtonVPN is the most reliable and advanced free VPN on our list. We’d recommend trying out the free version to get an idea of whether you like Proton or not and then upgrading to one of its paid plans if you want access to more of the great features the provider offers. However, in our opinion, it is a free VPN worth its weight in gold, especially given the unlimited data allowance.

Price Starting At: 4 $ / monthly 48 $ / annually
For New Users: 7 days free trial + 30-day money-back guarantee
Number of servers: 1077+
#3

VPN Service: Hotspot Shield VPN

Max Speed: Unlimited
Type of IP offered: Dynamic
Simultaneous connections / Users: 5
Number of Netflix Libraries: 13
Information sharing: 14 Eyes Member
OS support: Amazon Fire TV, Android, Android TV, Apple TV, Chromecast, ChromeOS, iOS, Linux, macOS, Windows
  • proiconLightning fast VPN
  • proiconOptimized for streaming
  • proiconPayPal payment option
  • coniconPoor support
  • conicon14-eyes VPN
  • coniconOnly 5 devices

Hotspot Shield VPN

Hotspot Shield has been offering users its free VPN for quite some time, and it’s one of the best free VPN services out there. Although it is limited in some ways, the completely free VPN apps provide customers with a taste of what paying users get.

  • Hotspot Shield free option and paid version (with a 45-day cooling-off period on the paid plan)
  • Industry-standard encryption
  • 500MB free data limit
  • 1 simultaneous connection
  • Some user logs

Hotspot Shield is a trusted VPN provider that has a good reputation. Its free subscription is limited but has some great features. Firstly, it uses AES-256 data encryption to protect your internet traffic under a solid, encrypted connection. If online privacy and security are a priority for you, then you’ll be fully protected with Hotspot Shield’s free VPN.

The plan offers users breakneck speeds on every internet connection, which is quite incredible for a free subscription. This means that you could enjoy streaming, with some limits due to the bandwidth allowance. There is no unlimited data but a 500MB per day data limit, which adds up to 15GB per month. This is enough for online banking tasks, sending emails, and checking a few websites.

Customers can protect one operating system at a time and have access to one server based in the USA. This is good for US residents, who will probably enjoy a fast internet connection when using this VPN server. However, this may be impractical for free users who live far away from the USA and want to enjoy a larger server network and many IP addresses.

Hotspot and its free service are not placed higher up on our list due to the provider’s questionable privacy policy. In recent years, the Hotspot Shield free plan has faced a lot of scrutiny for its heavy data collection. The company is US-based, which is concerning due to the data privacy laws the territory employs.

Users of this VPN provider can expect to have the following information logged:

  • IP address (which is only encrypted during your VPN session)
  • Location
  • Bandwidth consumption
  • Connections timestamps
  • Operating system information

What’s more, users of the free version of Hotspot may have their data, such as the unique advertising ID, sold to third parties. This is disappointing to see but not unusual with free VPN services. However, browsing data is never stored, which is the most important thing to remember.

There is limited customer service on the free plan, and individuals won’t have access to the 24/7 customer support that paying customers receive. However, the client is user-friendly, and the VPN is compatible with Windows, Mac, iOS, and Android systems (iPhone and iPad).

Price Starting At: 7.99 $ / monthly 95.88 $ / annually
For New Users: 45 -day money-back guarantee
Number of servers: 3200+
#4

VPN Service: TunnelBear VPN

Max Speed: 385000 Mbps
Type of IP offered: Shared
Simultaneous connections / Users: 5
Number of Netflix Libraries: 0Not available
Information sharing: 14 Eyes Member
OS support: Android, iOS, Linux, macOS, Windows
  • proiconAvailable for all devices
  • proiconBrowse from 23 countries
  • proiconStrong AES 256-bit encryption
  • coniconFree trial limited to 500MB per month
  • coniconVery poor support
  • coniconLimited payment options

TunnelBear VPN

TunnelBear is a smaller VPN, but that doesn’t mean its free version is less effective than others. TunnelBear offers a decent free VPN and is owned by McAfee, an online security powerhouse that is a reassuring indication of the provider’s effectiveness.

  • Free and unlimited plan
  • 500MB per month bandwidth limit
  • 1 device connection
  • Easy to use client
  • Updated privacy policy

TunnelBear is an appealing VPN with a free version that is limited by its small 500MB per month bandwidth limit. This means you can use the VPN for fundamental online tasks, but it’s unlikely that you’ll be able to game, stream video content, or spend long periods of time online with a lack of unlimited data and only 500MB a month available.

The client is appealing, and fans of kitschy bear designs will enjoy the interactive app’s appealing look. Honey pots adorn the home screen to show server locations, where there is also a data counter to let customers know how much of their free bandwidth limit they have used up. It is easy to use and creates an overall positive user experience.

Security is pretty good with TunnelBear, with AES-256 encryption and OpenVPN as the default protocol. If online privacy is a concern, then you’ll be pleased to know that TunnelBear has upped its logging policy. While TunnelBear still logs the monthly bandwidth usage, which TunnelBear apps are being used, and the operating systems used during a session, it never stores browsing data.

Another thing we like about TunnelBear when it comes to privacy is that the company carries out annual security audits by third parties. This is great to see, especially since VPN privacy policies can be difficult to understand. Having annual audits is a transparent way for VPN providers to reassure users of their online anonymity commitment.

Overall, TunnelBear doesn’t have the best free VPN, but it’s definitely worthy of being on this list. There are definite speed limits due to the small data allowance, which will affect your overall browsing experience and internet connection. You can download the VPN from TunnelBear’s website and enjoy protection on any of your devices, including Android, iOS, Windows, and Mac systems.

Price Starting At: 4.99 $ / monthly 59.88 $ / annually
For New Users: 30 days free trial + 30-day money-back guarantee
Number of servers: 20+
#5

VPN Service: Windscribe VPN

Max Speed: 7500 Mbps
Type of IP offered: Shared
Simultaneous connections / Users: Unlimited
Number of Netflix Libraries: 10
Information sharing: None
OS support: Amazon Fire TV, Android, ChromeOS, FireOS, iOS, Linux, macOS, Windows
  • proiconFree version available
  • proiconTons of locations
  • proiconExtentions for all browsers
  • conicon5 Eyes Member
  • coniconSupport is Chatbot and no 24/7 Live Chat
  • coniconOnly average speed

Windscribe VPN

Windscribe is another one of the best free VPN services that has apps for all the major operating systems, including Windows PC, Mac, Android, Linux, and iOS.

  • Free, customizable and premium version
  • 10GB per month data limit
  • Connect to a choice of servers in various server locations
  • 1 device connection allowed
  • No-logs policy

Windscribe is one of the best free VPN services available to people. As long as you don’t mind a 10GB data limit per month, you can enjoy encrypted internet browsing and access to ten VPN servers in countries around the globe. These servers are located in countries such as Germany, the USA, the UK, and Hong Kong.

It works with many devices, including Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS systems, including iPad. There is also a browser extension for Chrome that is user-friendly and ensures your browsers are protected. However, people are only allowed one device connection at a time, which is something to bear in mind if you use the internet over several devices.

Since Windscribe offers users various servers based in various countries and a data limit of 10GB per month, this free VPN service can be used to access streaming services. Thanks to the server locations, people can potentially bypass geo-blocks and enjoy foreign Netflix libraries on their devices.

Although there is no 24/7 customer support on any of Windscribe’s subscription plans, the provider is excellent in protecting user privacy. Windscribe doesn’t store data, IPs, or connection logs. However, it logs which server each user connects to and for how long, but this information is wiped soon after the VPN session has ended. Also, to enjoy the free plan, customers must create an account and sign up with an email address.

Although we’d like to see more advanced customer service including live chat support and perhaps a longer refund policy on its paid services, the free VPN offering is good. 10GB per month of data provides customers with a good way to see if they like Windscribe’s services, and we like the fact that it offers several server locations to its customers.

Price Starting At: 9 $ / monthly 49 $ / annually
For New Users: 1 days free trial + 3-day money-back guarantee
Number of servers: 500+

5. Speedify

As the name suggests, Speedify provides customers with fast speeds on its servers and no speed limits even on its free VPN service. There is a data limit per month, which may lead customers to try out one of Speedify’s paid plans.

Speedify is very fast, which makes it one of the best free VPNs on our list in terms of connection speed, and you’ll be guaranteed fast speeds and no speed limits, even on a public wi-fi connection.

Something else we love is the fact that Speedfiy has many servers in server locations around the world. What’s more, customers on both the free VPN plan and the paid plan can access all of these servers.

There is a 2GB monthly data limit, which is less than other providers on this list, such as ProtonVPN and Hotspot Shield. This means that individuals can’t effectively use Speedify for streaming or torrenting since the data allowance is too small.

Speedify is based in the USA, which is known for not having the best online data privacy laws. We checked out the privacy policy and noticed that the provider stores email addresses and names. Likewise, Speedify logs your IP address and other data such as device ID, amount of data used during a session, and connection length and timestamps. However, Speedify deletes all this information after six months.

The privacy rules are a little suspicious, especially since Speedify states it does provide governments with data when required by law. As the VPN provider is a US-based company, we’d proceed with caution if you wanted to use Speedify to download copyrighted material, share torrent files, or do anything else confidential; your online activity may not be fully anonymous.

6. Hide.me

Another free VPN with a 10GB per month data limit is Hide.me. This VPN is all about online anonymity and keeping your internet data completely private.

Last but not least is Hide.me. This VPN is big on keeping your data and online activity private, and that’s why it offers a free VPN to customers who can’t afford the premium plan. Hide.me is dedicated to protecting customers and so doesn’t make any money from its free plan by selling data to third parties or using advertisements.

There is a 10GB data allowance, sufficient for customers to carry out daily tasks online. However, it isn’t enough for streaming, and Hide.me acknowledges on its website that the free plan doesn’t support streaming.

With multiple servers to choose from, thanks to the 5 server location limit, individuals across the globe can enjoy Hide.me VPN’s services. Hide.me is supported by all major operating systems and has great mobile apps for iOS and Android users, available from the Google Play and Apple Store.

We really like the fact that there is 24/7 customer support for all subscribers, even those on the free VPN plan. This is really rare to see, and considering that some VPN providers, such as Speedify, don’t even have customer service, it’s very impressive.

So, with several servers available to free VPN customers and secured browsing ensured, there are many reasons why Hide.me is a good option for customers who want a free VPN experience.

Table of content

Is There a Free VPN?

Whether it is free or paid-for, a VPN encrypts your internet traffic and makes you untraceable online. VPNs can be used by anyone and are great for people who often log onto public wi-fi networks, frequently access confidential information online, or want more online privacy.

Free VPNs are more common than you’d think, with many providers offering free versions of their paid subscription plans. Popular paid VPN providers such as NordVPN and ExpressVPN don’t offer free VPN plans, but they have refund policies that essentially allow individuals to try out the services for a month.

It’s common for free subscriptions to lack advanced features and have scaled-back services. Since the VPNs are free, the protocols used and features offered may be extremely less advanced. There also may be a bandwidth limit, which can be problematic for free users who want a VPN to carry out online tasks that require a lot of data consumption.

What’s more, it’s hard to always know if a free Virtual Private Network is actually free. Many free VPN companies make money in other ways, either by in-app advertisements or, worse, by selling user data. Since VPNs are built to protect user privacy, it is counter-productive to use a free product that stores customer information and profits from selling it.

The best free VPNs are usually those that have been created by well-known VPNs, such as ProtonVPN and TunnelBear. Although the free versions of these VPNs are severely limited in what they offer, they provide free VPN users with access to a good VPN service and allowing them to try one out before committing to a paid plan. At VPNSurfers, we would always advise going with these free VPNs over other options.

Are Free VPNs Safe to Use?

Price usually reflects quality, which is why it’s sensible to be cautious when using a free VPN. Although there are many unlimited free VPN offerings, not all of them are safe. Free VPNs are known for using less secure protocols like PPTP. This protocol is great for a fast connection but is insecure and can be cracked easily by hackers. This means all your online activity could be deciphered by a third party and cause issues for you.

Furthermore, free VPNs don’t always have the best speeds. Even though most free VPNs employ the PPTP protocol, which is known for being fast, it is the oldest protocol on the market. This means it can’t compete with the new VPN technology that’s being created, including open-source protocols like OpenVPN and WireGuard. These protocols offer good protection and speed, two essential features of VPN software.

So, free VPNs are generally not considered the safest unless you get one from a reputable provider that uses first-rate encryption and good protocols.

Best Free VPNs

Should I Get a Free VPN?

If you have decided you want a VPN, but you aren’t sure whether to go for a premium VPN or free account, then there are several things to consider:

Free services have data limits

If you want to do some light tasks, then a free VPN with a bandwidth limit isn’t such a bad idea. However, if you need a VPN for gaming or watching movies via streaming services, then a free VPN may not have the speeds and data allowance you need. Use a premium VPN for faster speeds.

Fewer server locations

Free VPNs often have a smaller server network, as it isn’t cost-effective for them to offer multiple VPN servers to users. Alternatively, a VPN with a free option won’t provide access to all its servers. So, if there is a particular country you want to access content in, you’ll need to find a VPN that provides an IP address for your preferred country.

Relaxed security and privacy

Does your free VPN use the best protocols and offer secure encryption to hide user activity from prying eyes? Is your data safe with the provider, and does it have a strict no-logs policy? If the answer to both of these questions is no, you should probably avoid using it and look for a paid VPN instead.

A lack of premium features

Paid for services offer premium features and more benefits such as use on multiple operating systems and not only one device. As well as this, a premium service offers static IP options, usually doesn’t impose limits on data usage, offers 24/7 live chat support as well as BBC iPlayer and Netflix access. For advanced features, it is best to purchase a premium service.

Frequency of VPN use

If you only want a VPN for occasional use, then a free option may be better than a paid option. You’ll have fewer options in terms of servers and will endure data limits but it may work out better than purchasing a paid plan.

Free VPNs are 100% legal. However, it is important to remember that you shouldn’t use a free VPN subscription to carry out any illicit activities online. Given that free account users will often have data logged on VPN connections, if you do anything illegal while using a VPN, it may well be seen by other parties.

Does a Free VPN Work on Different Devices?

Yes, a free VPN product should work on various operating systems. For example, ProtonVPN offers free VPN apps for the most popular operating systems. The single issue is that, for most free providers, one account comes with protection for 1 device at a time meaning you can’t share your subscription with other users or enjoy extra protection on other devices.

Is Mozilla VPN Free?

Mozilla VPN is the product of Mozilla’s efforts to create a standalone VPN service that would rival others in the industry. Although Mozilla is better known as an internet browser, it offers a solid VPN service to customers.

What began as a browser extension VPN on Mozilla now has a desktop and mobile client for Windows, Android, and iOS users. Although the server size is small, with just over 200+ servers in 31 countries, this VPN’s advanced features are great. So, why are we mentioning Mozilla on a free VPN list? That’s due to the confusion surrounding its payment plan.

Since Mozilla VPN started as a browser extension, many individuals are under the impression that it is a free VPN. However, this isn’t the truth, and prices start from $4.99 a month if you wish to download this VPN and use it on your computer or phone.

$4.99 isn’t a lot to pay when you consider what Mozilla has to offer. There is an in-built kill switch, 5 simultaneous connections, and split tunneling offered for those who don’t want to encrypt all of their surfing data.

More excitingly, Mozilla uses the most advanced protocol, WireGuard, which means your internet activity will be safer than ever before. With all of this on offer, it’s worth paying a little extra to enjoy all of these incredible features.

However, there is a way to try out Mozilla for free. You can create an account and use the VPN for 30 days, thanks to its refund policy. If at the end of 30 days you aren’t impressed, you can cancel your subscription. Although this is a little bit sneaky, it is a good way to test out Mozilla and see if you really want to commit to using its services.

Although this browser extension turned fully-fledged VPN isn’t free, it is still worth looking at and trying out.

Author Monique Ballard

Hi there! I'm Monique, and I am a writer at VPNSurfers. I live in New York, but I'm originally from Delware. I love traveling, but the US will always be home to me. I have more than 5 years of experience using VPNs, and I ha...
Read more about the author

VPNSurfers » Best VPN in 2021 by VPNSurfers » Best Free VPN in 2021 – Free Trials & Best VPN Deals
Last updated: November 29, 2021