Most VPNs “get the job done,” but some users require much more than that. They don’t want to notice that some app is running on their computer, tablet and/or smartphone. They want super-fast internet, no matter what.
To get such an experience, you’ll have to go for a VPN that is truly fast. This usually means it has a rock-solid underlying infrastructure with thousands of servers in the network. Or that it uses some special technology to deliver blazing-fast speeds.
We’ve tested more VPN services than we care to count. And out of all of them, we have compiled the following list of fastest VPNs.
All of them rock, but for the best experience with super fast download and upload speeds – go for the top pick, install the app and let it do its magic in the background. Yes, it’s actually that easy. 😉
- 5,000+ servers in the network
- Easy to use - install it and forget it
- One license is good for up to 6 devices
- Strict zero-logs policy
- 30-day money-back guarantee
- Chrome extension is just a proxy
- You can't pay with PayPal
Its network includes more than 5,000 servers spread across 60 countries, which directly translates into faster speeds. NordVPN is also very secure, relying on the strong 256-bit encryption combined with secure VPN protocols (OpenVPN, WireGuard, IKEv2/IPSec). But as a user, you get a seamless experience with all this technology "doing its thing" in the background.
NordVPN is well suited to pretty much every task you throw at it — whether it's accessing a banned site from some country that filters out the internet, torrenting, accessing streaming services, or just wanting to keep a low profile on the web. It also doesn't keep any logs.
We highly recommend NordVPN to anyone looking for reliable service.
- Feature-rich yet easy to use
- One of the best VPNs around
- Strong no-logging policy
- Reliable support you can reach 24/7
- Limited number of servers in Africa and the Middle East
- Kinda pricey
ExpressVPN has great desktop apps for Windows and Mac, mobile apps and browser extensions. Also, it is well suited for video streaming services such as Netflix, Hulu, BBC iPlayer and others.
However, what makes it stand out is its ease of use. We can't emphasize this enough. One could tell a lot of time has been spent making sure even the advanced features are easily accessible. And we love it for that. Plus, let's not forget ExpressVPN's speed which tends to leave other services in the dust.
- It's super fast!
- Works with Netflix, BBC and others
- Easy to use apps, browser extensions
- You can try it for free!
- Some advanced features are not configurable
- Doesn't work in high-censorship countries
Furthermore, thanks to the availability of browser extensions - Hotspot Shield is also one of our top choices for Chrome and Firefox VPNs.
Your privacy is equally well protected, with the software only collecting some anonymized that help continually improve its service.
There is one caveat though - it won't work in high-censorship countries like China. If you don't need that in the first place, we highly recommend Hotspot Shield.
As that's typically the case with most VPN services out there, the longer you commit - the better deal you get. However, what makes Hotspot Shield even better is the fact that it offers a 7-day free trial of its service. A few other top VPN providers do the same. Plus, its money-back guarantee lasts for 45 days, making for a risk-free purchase. Cause, you can always get your money back. Sweet and just the way we like it.
- One the best VPNs for torrenting
- Works well with Netflix
- Simple setup on all popular devices
- Strict zero-logs policy
- Doesn't work with BBC iPlayer
- Doesn't work in China
Its desktop apps are not among the prettiest ones, but they get the job done. The important thing is that installation is easy and straightforward, and that no logs are kept by the company.
When it comes to pricing, IPVanish is somewhere in the middle — it's not the most affordable option but also not the most expensive one. As noted, it will be most appreciated by heavy BitTorrent users, and — related — Kodi fans.
- Reliable download and upload speeds
- Works with Netflix and BBC iPlayer
- Strict zero-logs policy
- Lets you use it on unlimited number of devices
- Low number of servers in Africa and Australia
You can rely on it for streaming and torrenting, with included extra features like CleanWeb and MultiHop, delivering a that much better — and more secure — experience.
Surfshark, the company, is based in the British Virgin Islands and with its zero-logs policy makes for a powerful combo to anyone looking to keep its web whereabouts under the radar.
The service is easy to use and comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Why do you need a fast VPN?
We don’t think that’s the right question; instead, the question should be – why don’t get the fastest VPN the money could buy? This is especially important since the difference between the super fast and not-that-fast VPN is pennies per month. There is really no good reason to settle for less.
But you may wonder…
How we test VPNs for speed?
When determining, what makes the fastest VPN – we tested various services in multiple settings and scenarios, including:
You don’t want to wait for your favorite TV show to load. Video buffering is one of the most annoying things one could experience and with the fastest VPNs, you don’t get any of that. They work like there is no VPN running in the background. And that should be the whole point – to get a more secure experience without even noticing that VPN is doing its job.
Many ISPs are throttling your Internet connecting when you’re using BitTorrent. And so with a VPN, you may even get the faster downloads and uploads, with your ISP having no idea what you’re doing online. Also worth knowing is that many VPNs have servers dedicated to and optimized for P2P traffic.
In the world of online gaming, the keyword is “latency.” It is the period of time you wait between sending the request to and getting the response from the server — the lower the latency, the faster response you’ll get. When the latency is high, you see delays and when it’s low – there are little to no delays in online games, which can literally be the difference between life and death (in the game).
Browsing the web
Finally, you’ll want a fast VPN just to browse the web without any hiccups. With a not-that-fast VPN, you may have to wait a bit and some images could take longer than usual to load. That is not the case with the fastest VPNs that make sure you don’t even notice their presence. And that, in case you wonder, is just the way we like it.
What makes a VPN fast?
The general rule of thumb is that the more servers a VPN has, the faster it is. But there also other elements included, the protocol it uses being one of them. For instance, Hotspot Shield is one of the fastest VPNs out there despite the fact that it has a relatively modest network of servers compared to its competitors. They manage to do this because they use their own proprietary protocol called Hydra.
Another savvy protocol is WireGuard, which has been making waves in the entire VPN industry. It manages to deliver blazing-fast download and upload speeds without compromising the user’s privacy.
Finally, in addition to the number of servers, you may also want to look for their locations. Specifically, you’ll want to get a VPN that has servers in the country you live in. This is the case even if you plan to mostly connect to servers in the US and Europe. Some data could be routed through those servers and as a result – you get to benefit from increased speeds.
Get an all-round awesome VPN!
You (all of us, really) need a VPN for many things. In that sense, a good and fast VPN will:
- Protect your privacy from the government and big corporations
- Bypass restrictions imposed by the government or various organizations
- Change your IP address so you get unrestricted access to Netflix, Disney+, iPlayer, HULU, and other video streaming services
- Encrypt and protect private data from cybercriminals
- Download files with BitTorrent anonymously
The top contenders that check all these boxes include the following: