UPDATE: Aug. 5, 2022, 11:23 a.m. EDT This story has been updated with the latest VPN deals and pricing.
Using a virtual private network (VPN) is one of the best ways to protect your online data and stay anonymous on the web, whether you're trying to stream movies abroad, torrent, bypass geo-restrictions, or just plain browse. Most providers' plans cost anywhere from $2 to $12 per month, though many lure customers in with discounted introductory rates that skyrocket after your initial term. To help you lock in a plan that'll fit your budget in the short and long term, we're compiling a weekly roundup of the best deals on all the VPNs we've personally tested. Below, you can check out our top picks as of Aug. 5.
ExpressVPN — save 49% on a 15-month plan
A reliable server network, a user-friendly app, a strong commitment to data protection, and a headquarters in the privacy-forward British Virgin Islands make ExpressVPN our favorite full-featured VPN on the market. It also happens to be one of the most expensive VPNs out there, which is why we highly recommend taking advantage of a promotion it's been running since early June: You can enroll in a 15-month plan at just $6.67/month, which is 49% off its standard $12.95/month rate. (Bonus: Your purchase is covered by a 30-day money-back guarantee and comes with a year's worth of unlimited cloud backups from Backblaze — that's a $7/month value by itself.) You'll switch to an $8.32/month annual plan after the first term is up. Bitcoin is accepted.
NordVPN — save 67% on a 2-year Standard plan
Power users shouldn't think twice about signing up for NordVPN, another industry giant based in the British Virgin Islands that packs robust security features like double encryption, obfuscated servers, dark web monitoring, malware protection, ad and tracker blockers, and Onion Over VPN, a tool that combines your VPN connection with the Tor network for an extra layer of privacy. All of its subscriptions come with a 30-day money-back guarantee, the cheapest one being its two-year Standard plan: New customers can sign up for an introductory rate of just $3.99/month, or 67% off its usual $11.99/month pricing. Bitcoin, Ethereum, and XRP are accepted.
Optional upgrades include:
NordVPN Plus (with cross-platform password manager and data breach scanner) — $4.69/month $10.58/month (save 56%) for two years
NordVPN Complete (with a cross-platform password manager, data breach scanner, and 1TB encrypted cloud storage) — $5.99/month $16.57/month (save 64%) for two years
Proton VPN — save 50% on a two-year Plus plan
The Swiss-based Proton VPN is another great pick for privacy wonks, with open-source apps and critical infrastructure that's stored inside a data center requiring biometric access. We recommend its Plus plan, which gets you full access to its server network, streaming service and P2P support, ad/tracker/malware protection, and a Tor over VPN tool that lets you direct traffic through the Tor network with a single click. Monthly subscriptions go for $9.99, but you'll pay just $4.99/month if you commit to two years (with a 30-day money-back guarantee) — that's a 50% savings. Bitcoin is accepted.
CyberGhost VPN — save 82% on a 39-month plan
This Romania-based provider lays claim to the biggest, most globally diverse network we've seen, with special severs optimized for streaming, gaming, and P2P to maintain consistent connections. Sign up for 39 months of CyberGhost coverage at $2.29/month (or 82% off its standard monthly fee of $12.99), and you'll be able to renew at that exact same rate every 36 months thereafter. Like all of CyberGhost's multi-year plans, that's protected by a 45-day money-back guarantee and includes free access to its ID Guard and Privacy Guard tools. Bitcoin is accepted.
Optional add-ons include:
Dedicated IP — $3.75/month $5/month (save 25%) for three years
CyberGhost Password Manager — $2/month $3.49/month (save 43%) for one year
Editor's note: The CyberGhost website features a countdown to a deadline for locking in that three years + three months rate, but we're pretty sure it's just a marketing ploy.
TunnelBear — save 67% on a three-year Unlimited plan
Our go-to recommendation for anyone who's never used the technology before, TunnelBear is a simple, lightweight VPN with an intuitive (and adorable) interface. Though it's incapable of unblocking streaming sites and based in Canada, a Five Eyes country, it should serve you well if you're just surfing the web. We recommend its Unlimited plan over the free version for unlimited browsing and priority customer service, which goes for just $3.33/month when you enroll for three years — that's 67% off its usual $9.99/month rate and a fixed price that won't increase after your first term. Bitcoin is accepted and refunds are offered on a case-by-case basis.
Private Internet Access (PIA) — save 82% on a 26-month plan
It's nothing particularly special (and its U.S. headquarters location isn't ideal), but for users in search of a basic VPN with open-source apps, built-in ad blocking, and a free email breach monitor, PIA is worth a look. At the time of writing, you could score 26 months of coverage for only $2.19/month — that shaves 82% off its regular rate of $11.99/month and includes a 30-day money-back guarantee. Your plan will continue at the same rate after that first term is up, which earns it some extra brownie points. Bitcoin, Ethereum, Litecoin, and even third-party gift cards are accepted.
Optional add-ons include:
Dedicated IP — $4/month $5/month (save 20%) for two years
Antivirus by PIA — $1.45/month $4.50/month (save 68%) for two years
IPVanish — save 64% on a one-year plan
Another middle-of-the-road pick with a U.S. headquarters (boo), IPVanish makes up for a lack of advanced security features with a minimalist, straightforward app and support for unlimited simultaneous connections. You can get your first term of its annual plan for just $3.99/month (or 64% off its standard monthly rate of $10.99), which comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee and free antivirus protection from VIPRE. After that first year is up, you'll get bumped to $7.50/month. Crypto is not accepted.
Editor’s Note: IPVanish and VIPRE are owned by Ziff Davis, Mashable’s publisher. Any Ziff Davis products featured on Mashable are covered independently by our editorial team.
PureVPN — save 82% on a 27-month plan
Optional add-ons include:
Dedicated IP — $2.99/month
Port forwarding — $0.99/month
Dedicated IP with port forwarding — $3.49/month
DDoS protection — $3.99/month