In this guide, we'll show you the best VPNs to use in the USA, or to get a US IP address, and why US citizens should seriously consider subscribing to a VPN before going online.
What are the best VPNs for the USA?
These are the best of the best VPNs to use in the USA for 2021:
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Whether you live in the US, or outside the US and want to spoof you location, a VPN is a versatile tool that can help. With the right VPN you can spoof into the USA, or across state lines, to access regional content, such as blackout sports games or the expanded US Netflix library if you're abroad.
But, a VPN is not just for spoofing your location. It also encrypts your web traffic, so ISPs and the NSA can't perform constant mass surveillance. Encryption also allows you to download torrents with complete privacy. This makes it one of the most powerful online tools available for US citizens concerned about their data.
It's important to find a nice balance between privacy measures and unblocking power when deciding on a VPN for the USA. As such, we consider the following criteria when compiling our list:
- USA VPN servers
- A no-logs policy
- Fast VPN speeds
- Strong encryption (OpenVPN using 128-bit AES or higher)
- Unblocking capabilities
- Jurisdiction – to rule out any intervention by the NSA or FBI
- Privacy features
Now we've covered what we look for in a good VPN for the US, let's take a look at our top picks.
The Best VPNs to use in the USA in 2021
This is a full list of the VPNs we recommend to for the USA:
Which is the fastest VPN for the United States?
At ProPrivacy.com, we check VPN speeds every day – and you can check out the results in the graph below. Hopefully, this gives you a better idea of how fast our recommended VPNs are.
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We conduct our speed tests under lab conditions and use a dedicated gigabit line – so don't expect to get the exact same results. Instead, the table above should give you an idea of which VPNs are performing the fastest right now. If you're looking for fast VPN, simply select the top performer!
Will a VPN improve my internet speeds?
Sadly, no. A VPN has to reroute all of your traffic via the VPN server, in addition to encrypting/decrypting your traffic. As a result, your internet connection will actually be slowed down a little. The best VPNs invest in high-quality servers and provide faster speeds, and as a result, your traffic will only be slowed by a negligible amount.
If you would like to know more, check out our VPN speed test guide.
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Why do I need a VPN in the USA?
With your web browsing history and metadata constantly monitored, a VPN is the only way to stop US government agencies, corporations, and advertisers from harvesting your data.
In addition, US citizens cannot access geo-restricted content from overseas. And, if you go on vacation, US websites and services will also be subjected to a blackout. Leaving America shouldn’t result in an inability to access your internet banking, unblock Amazon Prime video, or the full US Netflix catalog. Luckily, a VPN for the USA will fix these issues.
That's why our experts have done the hard work for you and searched far and wide for the five very best VPNs for the US market (an impressive feat when you consider that there are over 800 commercial VPNs available!).
All the VPN's we recommend for the US are world class – but they do differ slightly. To ensure you pick the best provider for your needs, you can compare prices, server numbers, connection speeds, and other essential factors in this guide. And, if you need even more details, you can check out our VPN provider reviews.
Also, if you're a newcomer to VPN technology, take a moment to familiarize yourself by reading our helpful guides:
Staying secure with a VPN in the US
In the US, ISPs are legally permitted to sell users’ web browsing habits. This means copyright holders can easily get hold of consumer web browsing habits directly from ISPs. This makes it dangerous to download via BitTorrent without a VPN.
Your ISP may send you a cease and desist letter if you're caught engaging in piracy. It's even possible to have your account terminated. On other occasions, piracy can result in a costly lawsuit or letters demanding hundreds of dollars in the way of an out of court settlement.
To bypass restrictions and stop ISPs, copyright holders, and the government from snooping on your data; you need a VPN. Plus, with a VPN you can access any website at work – and because of the encryption provided by the VPN – your employer will never know. Check out our most secure VPNs page for more information.
In 2015, Edward Snowden revealed that the US government had lied to its citizens about snooping. New legislation has since been passed, permitting US agencies to keep performing mass data surveillance.
Innocent US citizens are constantly monitored not just by the NSA but also by the CIA and other alphabet agencies using the CLOUD Act, the Patriot Act, and various other loopholes (as explained in Jennifer Granick’s book American Spies).
Your freedom is destroyed under the auspice of combating terrorism, and your right to privacy is removed. A VPN can combat this, however, and help you take your life back into your own hands, as well as provide security for yourself and your family.
US-based VPN services
The jurisdiction of a VPN is something you should be aware of when picking a service to subscribe to. Given the widespread surveillance that US citizens and companies are subjected to online, you may begin to question the effectiveness of VPN providers that are based in the US.
Of all the VPN providers on our USA list, two of them are based in the USA, these are:
- Private Internet Access, Denver, Colardo
- IPVanish, Orlando, Florida
The reason we feel comfortable including both of the services on the list is down to the logs they keep, or rather the lack of logs they keep. For both providers, we scrutinized their no logs claims and found that they don't keep any identifiable logs. And what they don't keep, they can't be forced to hand over when the authorities come knocking.
In fact, Private Internet Access has proven this to be the case, not once, but twice in a court of law. And, IPVanish has opened its service up to StackPath and independent third-party auditor to verify their claims on no logs, so you don't need to take out word for it.
If you want to learn more about VPN logs, what they are and how they are used, check out our best VPN no logs guide for more information.
The benefits of getting a USA IP address
Every day, all over the world, people are using VPNs to get a US IP address – which isn't surprising when you consider just how much online content there is on offer to American citizens. We take a look at some of the more common reasons folks are eager to get US IP addresses, and appear as though they're in America, below.
More titles on US Netflix
That's right, not all Netflix libraries are created equal, and while some countries get more than others, the US remains the holy grail, if not in terms quantity, certainly in terms of exclusivity.
There are a number of titles unique to US Netflix that you simply cannot access anywhere else in the world, such as The Queen, Charmed and The 4400 to name a few.
If you want to know more about what you could be watching with a USA VPN for Netflix, check out our handy Netflix tool StreamCatcher to view Netflix titles from around the world!
So far, Hulu is only available in Japan and the US. With no signs of expanding beyond these two countries currently, more people are turning to USA VPNs for Hulu to get their fix of the many exclusive titles they hold the rights to, such as The Handmaid's Tale and Marvel's Runaway.
If these titles aren't available on another streaming service in your country, then getting them on Hulu through a VPN remains one of the most effective ways of watching them online.
If you want to learn more, we have put together a handy guide about unblocking Hulu with a VPN.
Watching American sports
It's no secret that the NFL, NBA, MBL and many other US sporting leagues are growing in popularity around the world. If you are a keen follower of American football, basketball, baseball, or any other American sport for that matter, it's possible to tune in and watch native coverage from anywhere in the world.
Benefits of IP spoofing for US citizens
If you already live in the USA (and have a US IP); you might think you don’t need a VPN to get a US IP address.
However, many sports (baseball, football, and basketball) are restricted across state lines – due to blackout games. This can be annoying if you want to watch a game.
With a VPN, you can pretend to be in a different city or state. This allows you to gain access to different TV schedules and bypass MLB or NFL blackout games.
Alternatively, if you are an expat living in the US, or even if you are just visiting the States on holiday, it's possible to access all your home comforts during your stay with the US VPNs we recommend in this guide. So, if you are missing Eastenders and want to watch BBC iPlayer from the US, or you want to unblock Hotstar, you can do with a VPN.
Is it safe to use a free VPN in the USA?
There are free VPNs on the market, and some of them can be trusted (follow the link for more details). However, if you do use a free VPN, you need to be extremely careful which one you choose. Many free VPN services make money by collecting user data and selling it to third parties to create a revenue stream. Unfortunately, as keeping a VPN up and running costs a lot of money, this is not a surprise.
There are even a number of VPNs that featured high-up on the Play Store that've been found to contain embedded tracking libraries and spyware. These services were caught red-handed lying about the level of encryption they provide. For this reason, and because they don't offer the privacy they claim, they're terrible security risks.
If you want a secure free VPN, you can stick to the ones in our guide and you will be safe. However, those VPNs’ free plans are restricted with download limits, connection speed restrictions, and limited server options. VPN companies do this to encourage free users to move over to the premium paid service. This is fair, and it is generous – but it means that the free VPN is not as good as the full-paid subscription.
If you want to use a full premium VPN and all its features without restrictions, the best way to do so is using the money-back guarantee. That way, you can put a VPN through its paces and trial all of its functions without risking your cash.
How to get ExpressVPN for free in the US
Did you know you can experience ExpressVPN's fully featured service without limitation… for free!
If you're finding free VPNs too restrictive, why not test ExpressVPN premium service? Simply purchase a subscription using the button below and take advantage of the no-nonsense money-back-guarantee. Enjoy the service for up to 30-days, and when you cancel, you will receive a complete refund!
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Torrenting with a VPN in the US
The vast majority of torrenters are going to be downloading copyrighted material – and that's a civil offense. You can catch a fine of up to $150,000 for each piece of copyright infringed upon, in fact. So, we're not messing around when we say that you need to take precautions before you torrent, and especially in the US.
VPN technology can protect your identity when torrenting. This prevents your ISP, the copyright holders, and even your torrent peers from knowing your real IP address.
Can I use any VPN to torrent in the US?
No, and this is important – not all VPNs allow torrenting on their servers. If you torrent using a VPN that doesn't allow it, your account could get blocked and the VPN provider has made no promises to protect your data if anyone comes knocking.
There is good news, however. All of the VPN's we've highlighted in this guide allow torrenting, and you can be sure they take every precaution to keep your identity protected.
If we haven't covered your question about using a VPN in the USA in the article above – we have you covered in the FAQ section below. However, if anything is still unclear – or if you have any other questions – please don’t hesitate to leave us a question at the end of this article.
[[post-object type="accordion" question="Is it illegal to use a VPN in USA?" answer="Not at all! A VPN is a completely legal piece of software, and you're well within your rights to encrypt your web traffic. The things you do whilst connected to a VPN can still be illegal, however. Downloading copyrighted content, for example, remains against the law with or without a VPN." /]]
[[post-object type="accordion" question="Can I be tracked if you use a VPN in the USA?" answer="A <a href='/vpn/comparison/most-secure-vpn'>secure VPN</a> encrypts your traffic and online activity – because of this, it's impossible for your ISP to track what you get up to online. <a href='/tools/what-is-my-ip'>Your real IP address</a> will also be hidden, concealing your location and enabling you to check out websites and services that might otherwise be restricted." /]]
[[post-object type="accordion" question="Are there any free VPN services that work in the USA?" answer="Yes, there are some <a href='/vpn/comparison/free-vpn-services'>free VPNs</a> that are safe to use. Bear in mind that the free VPNs that actually provide robust privacy will often come with limitations. You'll likely be saddled with bandwidth or usage limits, for example. These are set in place in order to tempt you into purchasing the VPN's premium service. There are also hundreds of more malicious free VPNs on the market, with truly awful privacy policies that put people's data at risk. Free VPNs also fail to unblock services like Netflix or Hulu. However, some of the VPNs listed above do and some offer a free trial or a money-back guarantee." /]]
[[post-object type="accordion" question="Does a VPN change your IP Address?" answer="A VPN conceals your original IP address when you connect to a server. It also assigns you a new, temporary IP address based in the same location as the server you've selected – and this allows you to pretend to be in that same place, physically, though you might actually be half the world away. This permits VPN users to bypass geo-restrictions and <a href='/vpn/comparison/unblock-websites'>unblock website</a> content from overseas. This is a great solution for US expats or anyone on holiday, as you'll be able to pretend you're right back in the US!" /]]
[[post-object type="accordion" question="How will a VPN protect my privacy?" answer="A VPN encrypts all of your web traffic to provide privacy and prevent your ISP and government from snooping on your online activity. With a VPN, you'll also be safe from hacking attempts or third-parties attempting to access your data when you connect to a public WiFi hotspot. A VPN cannot stop you from visiting dodgy websites or downloading malware and viruses, however. For this reason, it is important to use a VPN in addition to good <a href'/privacy-service/comparison/best-antivirus'>antivirus software</a>." /]]
By now you should have all the information you need to make an informed decision about which VPN to use for the USA, so let's review our top picks:
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