How Much Does a VPN Cost? And How to Save Money on VPNs

VPN Cost and Money-Saving Tips!
How much should you pay for a VPN? Find out what determines the cost of a VPN subscription and learn how to get the most features for the lowest price.

VPN services cost between $3 to $25 a month depending on service quality and length of subscription. Like all bulk purchases, the longer the subscription duration, the cheaper the monthly price.

The shortest VPN subscription is a one-month plan which costs between $5.99* to $15. Next is a 6-month plan which is offered by a few VPN services and costs between $5.50 to $8 per month.

More commonly, the next subscription tier is the one-year or annual plan most of which cost between $25 to $100 per year, or $2.04 to $8.50 per month which you have to pay in full at the time of purchase.

The 2-year plan is the cheapest tier of any VPN service and costs between $50 to $150 per year, or $2 to $6.25 per month. Since the complete two-year payment has to be made in full at the time of purchase, some users may not find this appealing however the savings from longer plans are significant compared to the shorter plans.

* These prices are derived from the top 25 paid VPNs across multiple platforms. OysterVPN is the only paid VPN that offers a full suite of features at the market-lowest cost of $5.99 for the one-month plan.

How Much Should a VPN Cost?

Like with other subscription software, the cost of a VPN depends upon the quality of service and the variety of features it provides. Online privacy is a dynamic process and a VPN that gives holistic protection at the touch of a button usually as multiple layers of data protection to perform in the background.

These may include real-time threat protection, ad-blocking, IP hopping, malware detection, and more. Speaking of which, not every VPN service offers such diverse features. But then again, not every user requires them.

Which brings us to the other side of VPN cost—what features do you want in your VPN? The more complex the privacy requirements of a user, the more sophisticated the VPN is and thus pricier.

Gamers, business users, travelers, and streamers, all need a VPN for specific uses that are catered by special features offered by the VPN providers. Most good quality VPN services will cover the needs of all these users.

How to Get a Cheap VPN?

We all love savings especially when we don’t have to compromise on the quality of service. Fortunately, there are readily available discounts on the best VPN services available on the market.

Brands run seasonal promotions for important holidays and events like Black Friday or 11/11. Some VPNs also offer student discounts and special discount codes if you refer the brand to a friend.

These days, many brands have collaborations with social media influencers and content creators. They often share coupon codes for VPN brands that offer the service at reduced prices.

Make sure you check out the website of the VPN brand you are interested in to see the latest promotion they are running. The good news is that VPN promotions are often massive with discounts ranging from 50% to even 85% sometimes.

Why Determines the Cost Of A VPN?

But setting aside any special use cases, there are a few basic features that all VPN services are required to have in order to be worth the price tag. Here’s what you need to check for in a VPN:

The Server Network: Where and How Many

Servers are the backbone of a virtual private network. They are responsible for the speed, and security of a user’s VPN connection, and provide the international IP addresses that enable you to transport yourself virtually to locations worldwide.

The greater the number of servers, the better the speed and overall browsing experience for the user. This is because a few servers will be unable to effectively manage the traffic generated by a great number of users causing lags and connection issues.

A good VPN has a network of hundreds and thousands of optimized servers that can handle large volumes of data flowing from a great number of users. More server locations give users greater choice in switching their virtual location and enjoying online content unavailable in their location.

Security Protocols and Encryption Level

If you are a complete tech novice, don’t worry, these terms aren’t as complex as they may appear. Just remember to choose a VPN that uses AES 256-bit encryption as it is the latest in data security.

Security protocols determine how your data is transmitted across the internet through secure tunnels to maintain your privacy. There are many different types of protocols such as IKEv2, LPTP, PPTP, OpenVPN, Wireguard, and so on.

Though every protocol has its pros and cons, it is best when a VPN service gives the user the option to switch between multiple security protocols. Many cheap VPNs may have lower-end protocols but do not offer the more latest iterations such as OpenVPN or Wireguard.

Connection Speed and Stability

The test of any VPN’s worth comes down to user experience. This requires a VPN to have fast upload and download speeds supported by a stable connection as a minimum. The best VPN services invest a lot of resources in building and maintaining the infrastructure that gives a smooth, uninterrupted user experience.

Many technical components go into creating a virtual private network that is both secure and fast— and it costs money. That is why VPN services with high standards diligently maintain their server infrastructure to never compromise on performance.

Customer Support

Any good software service can run into some problems from time to time. The real test is how well the service is equipped to deal with those problems. A 24/7 technical support team is necessary for any VPN you purchase so anytime you have connectivity, speed, or other issues, help is available to you.

VPNs are a serious matter for many users who are traveling or need a VPN for work. So tech support should be a chat or email away to fix your issues and not leave you stranded in a bind. Every great VPN brand has this facility available to all users no matter their subscription tiers.


Good VPNs cost between $3.5 to $12 per month based on subscription length. Some features are basic to a good VPN and then some extras are offered by a great VPN. Both will serve you for unblocking content and maintaining the privacy of your data but the latter usually provide better overall performance.

It’s worth investing in a VPN—we say investing because this software delivers online privacy returns—as we spend our lives online. It’s easy to find discounts and promos on VPN software so you can enjoy freedom of inline privacy for a negligible amount.

    About Author
    Julia Samuel

    Julia is a researcher and writer pursuing the latest breakthroughs in online privacy technology. She would like to take you along as she explores the tucked-away corners of the internet.

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