The Best VPNs for Windows

The list of available VPNs online gets longer every day. The sheer number of options can make choosing the best VPN for your Windows computer a difficult task. Unfortunately, just because a VPN is available on Windows OS doesn’t mean it’s a solid choice. Thankfully, we compiled a list of the best VPNs for Windows in 2021 for you — taking into account all of the features that you expect from a top-notch VPN.

When analyzing and testing these VPNs for Windows, we considered the following criteria:

  • Security
  • Privacy
  • Speed
  • Price
  • Ability to unblock streaming services

Unfortunately, not all VPNs keep your surfing as private or secure as you might hope. That’s why you have to do your research to see which VPN will keep your activity optimally secure and completely private — even from prying government eyes.

To save you hours of research and testing, we’ve done all the legwork for you by extensively reviewing and testing the most popular VPNs to discover the absolute top picks for your Windows OS. Below, you will find our favorite Windows VPNs.

  • NordVPN – Best Windows VPN Overall
  • ExpressVPN – Access to Your Favorite Streaming Services Made Easy
  • IPVanish – Astounding Customer Support Channels and Unlimited Devices
  • SurfShark – A Competitive, Comprehensive, and Customizable VPN Solution
  • Private Internet Access – Fast on Windows With Great Mobile Apps

1. NordVPN: Best Windows VPN Overall

NordVPN is undoubtedly one of the most popular and well-known VPNs on the market right now. With all the hype, our expectations were high, and NordVPN didn’t disappoint. To be honest, it was a very close race for the No. 1 spot on our list between NordVPN and ExpressVPN, but NordVPN took a slim lead over ExpressVPN. Let’s see why.

Overview of NordVPN

Company location Panama
Integrated network kill switch Yes
Number of Servers 5,400 in 59 countries
Platforms Windows, macOS, iOS, Android, and Linux
Number of devices 6
Minimum monthly price $3.71

Strengths:

  • Located in Panama. Panama is not a member of any surveillance alliance and does not require NordVPN to collect data on its users.
  • Exceedingly fast. Our tests resulted in speed increases while using NordVPN.
  • 30-day, money-back guarantee. Some VPNs offer guarantees of as little as seven days.
  • Immense number of available servers. NordVPN has thousands of servers in 59 countries and 70-plus regions.
  • OpenVPN security protocol with Obfsproxy cloaking. NordVPN employs one of the most secure security protocols available.

Weaknesses:

  • Complicated. NordVPN is not as streamlined as other VPNs, but it has more customization options.
  • Limited number of devices. NordVPN allows up to six simultaneous connections.

NordVPN has consistently offered its Windows users a robust VPN with nearly unprecedented security. While we were happily surprised by the speed increase we experienced in our tests, this might not be the case for you, depending on where you are located and what server you are connecting to. The “cherry on top” that really pushed NordVPN ahead of ExpressVPN in our list was the fact that it is based in Panama. This is a country known for lack of governmental intrusion when it comes to privacy — unlike the United States and many European countries. For a deeper analysis of this VPN, check out our in-depth NordVPN review.


2. ExpressVPN: Access to Your Favorite Streaming Services Made Easy

ExpressVPN excelled in every testing category. We give ExpressVPN the highest recommendation. In our experience, contacting customer support via email has always proved to be extremely easy, fluid, and helpful. Connecting to our favorite streaming services has always been easy with ExpressVPN, and when we ran into a problem on a specific server accessing a specific streaming service, customer service got us hooked up right away.

Overview of ExpressVPN

Company location British Virgin Isles: Non-5 Eyes member
Integrated network kill switch Yes
Number of Servers 3,000+ in 160 locations / 96 countries
Platforms macOS, Windows, Linux, iOS, and Android
Number of devices 5
Minimum monthly price $8.32

Strengths:

  • Amazing customer support. 24/7 customer support available across email, phone, live chat, and a strong knowledge base.
  • Great for streaming anywhere. Unblocks all major content services (tested with Netflix, Hulu, Disney Plus, Amazon Prime Video, and YouTube.)
  • Streamlined and easy to use. ExpressVPN offers an all-around excellent user experience.
  • 30-day, money-back guarantee. This is much better than other VPNs’ seven-day policies.
  • Concise no-logging policy. They don’t log your activity; plus their headquarters are located outside of countries involved in intelligence-sharing agreements such as 14 Eyes.

Weaknesses:

  • Noticeable speed drop. During speed tests, we observed a 55 percent decrease in download speed.
  • Limited number of devices. ExpressVPN only allows five simultaneous connections, while some other VPNs offer unlimited devices.
  • Far from the cheapest Windows VPN on the market. ExpressVPN isn’t expensive for what they are bringing to the table, but there are much more affordable options.

Beyond just Windows OS, ExpressVPN performs well across all platforms. While the speed tests didn’t come out with the best results, it didn’t really detract from our online experience; on the contrary, we were easily able to access region-locked Netflix and other streaming services. One time when we ran into an issue accessing Netflix using a specific server location, we contacted customer service, and we were presented with an easy-to-understand solution to our problem. Here you can see a more in-depth ExpressVPN review.


3. IPVanish: Astounding Customer Support Channels and Unlimited Devices

You will find IPVanish on most “Top VPN” lists — and for good reasons. IPVanish offers some of the best value on the market today. For as low as $2.62 a month, you can connect and protect an unlimited number of devices simultaneously.

Overview of IPVanish

Company location U.S.
Integrated network kill switch Yes
Number of Servers 1,500+ in 50+ countries
Platforms Windows, macOS, iOS, and Android
Number of devices Unlimited
Minimum monthly price $2.62

Strengths:

  • Comes with 500 GB of safe storage for just $0.29 a month. While you can opt out of the extra storage, the price is so low that it almost doesn’t make sense to ignore it.
  • Very affordable yearly price. At just $2.62 a month, IPVanish is in the running for the best-value VPN on our list.
  • Unlimited devices. Connecting unlimited devices is a huge perk when compared to NordVPN and ExpressVPN that only allow six and five devices respectively.
  • 30-day refund policy. Sometimes a seven-day return policy just doesn’t cut it.
  • Highly configurable. We loved that you could choose your encryption protocol — even down to the specific server in any given specific city.
  • Strong encryption with OpenVPN protocol. OpenVPN protocol is the golden goose of encryption protocols.

Weaknesses:

  • Based in the U.S., a Five Eyes member. While most VPN users won’t care where a VPN company is located, being in the U.S. could be a deal-breaker for some.
  • Software lacks modern design. The software isn’t hard to use, but it’s not the most attractive.

We love IPVanish for Windows users. It is highly customizable and gives you one of the highest levels of security you could ask for. While the Windows application lacks a touch of modern design, the user experience is easy and straightforward; it’s not hard to protect yourself with IPVanish.


4. SurfShark: A Competitive, Comprehensive, and Customizable VPN Solution

As the lowest-price option on our list, Surfshark is anything but cheap when it comes to quality. Connect and protect an unlimited number of devices with a truly comprehensive VPN. It is great for Windows 10 users as well as on your mobile phone.

Company location British Virgin Isles: Non-5 Eyes member
Integrated network kill switch Yes
Number of Servers 1,700+ servers in 63 countries
Platforms Windows, Android, macOS, iOS, and Linux
Number of devices Unlimited
Minimum monthly price $2.49

Strengths:

  • Unlimited number of devices. This is a significant plus over VPNs that limit your number of simultaneous connections.
  • CleanWeb function. CleanWeb is a seamless ad blocker/ tracking tool.
  • 30-day, money-back guarantee. This works out a lot better for most people than a typical seven-day refund policy.
  • MultiHop tool. This tool allows for multilayered obfuscation of your location. You will get a new IP every time you connect to Surfshark.
  • Great value. It’s a fully comprehensive and strong VPN for an extremely affordable price.
  • Located in the British Virgin Islands. The British Virgin Islands are a territory that is not a member of any surveillance alliance and does not require Surfshark to collect data on its users.

Weaknesses:

  • Lack of customization options. While Surfshark has out-of-the-box usability that many users prefer, a lack of customization may put some users off.

Surfshark is a strong contender on our list of the best VPNs for Windows users. While it might not have the same number of servers as NordVPN or have as many customization options as IPVanish, we still think it has everything you need out of a VPN at a very affordable price. For a more in-depth review of this VPN, check out our Surfshark VPN review.


5. Private Internet Access: Fast on Windows With Great Mobile Apps

While it comes in at the bottom of our list, Private Internet Access VPN is still a better VPN for Windows than any VPN that didn’t make it on our list. It is easy to use, fast on Windows, and gives you a good bang-for-your-buck.

Company location United States
Integrated network kill switch Yes
Number of Servers 34,732 in 78 countries
Platforms Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, and iOS
Number of devices 10
Minimum monthly price $2.69

Strengths:

  • Stunning number of servers. The closest competitor on this list, NordVPN, still doesn’t come close to the number of available servers as Private Internet Access.
  • Fast VPN on Windows. User tests indicate a miniscule drop in speed while using Windows OS.
  • Great Value. $2.69 a month minimum monthly price is about as low as it gets.

Weaknesses:

  • Based in the U.S., a Five Eyes member. While this might not matter to many VPN users, being in the U.S. could be a deal-breaker for some.
  • Limited number of devices. While 10 devices might not seem very limiting to most users, it’s not as good as an unlimited number of devices.

Overall, Private Internet Access is a solid VPN that performs exceedingly well on Windows. With over 34,000 available servers and a low monthly price, this VPN is a strong contender for the best value.


Choosing The Best VPN For Windows

While NordVPN took the top spot on our list, we still encourage you to read through the strengths and weaknesses of each VPN — as well as the prices — to decide which Windows VPN is truly the best choice for you.