In this guide, we have listed the best VPN routers that easily connects to the internet via Virtual Private Network. If you’re planning to buy a VPN router for home or office, then buy those that support VPNs.
We have carefully handpicked these routers because compatibility is all that matters when buying a router. Along with that, we have also mentioned prices and their main features so you can compare them with other best router for VPN 2021.
The best VPN routers that we suggested on this page will allow you to set up a VPN within minutes because many people assume that using a VPN with Router is for advanced users only. These routers will not impact your connection speed, we have taken care of that while listing them. Once you install a VPN on these routers, all your internet traffic will run through an encrypted tunnel. Our top recommendation is ExpressVPN because of its high compatibility with routers and easy set up.
- 3,000+ Servers in 94 Countries
- Hard disk free infrastructure (RAM only)
- 256-bit Military-Grade Encryption
- Excellent unblocking capability for Netflix, Hulu & more
- 5 Multi Logins
- Zero-knowledge DNS
7 Best VPN Routers 2021
Here is a list of best VPN routers along with their features. You can also find a price comparison for these routers that will help you in making buying decisions:
Quick Comparison of the best VPN Routers 2021
Here is a brief VPN router comparison of the above devices:
|VPN Routers||Linksys WRT 3200 ACM||TP-Link Archer C7 AC1750||Trendnet AC2600||Asus RT-AC5300|
|Netgear Nighthawk X4S Smart||Netgear – Nighthawk AC2300|
|Speed||802.11ac: 3x 867 Mbps||5 GHz 1300 Mbps||1733 Mbps WiFi AC||802.11 ac 5334 Mbps||2,167 Mbps (5 GHz)||802.11 ac 2600 Mbps||2300 Mbps|
|Connectivity||4x Gigabit Ethernet, 1x USB 3.0, 1 x ESATA/USB 2.0||Dual USB Ports||USB 3.0 share ports||USB 3.0 share ports||1 USB 3.0 port and 1 USB 2.0 port||4 x 1G Ethernet, 2 x 3.0 USB, and 1 x eSATA ports||4 x 1G Ethernet and 2 USB ports|
|Features||Tri-Stream 160, 1.8 GHz dual-core CPU, 512 MB RAM, 256 MB flash memory||Guest Network, IPv6 Supported, Easy Set-up||Voice prioritization, 1.4 GHz dual-core processor, Pre-encrypted WiFi||Low latency, 1.4 GHz dual core processor||ASUS WRT firmware, AiCloud, AiProtection, High-power mode.||1.7 GHz dual core processor, DoS Firewall, Guest Wi-Fi access||NETGEAR Armor, dual-core 1 GHz processor, DoS Firewall|
Get Started with a VPN Router
There are multiple Router VPNs and different ways to use it. Here are some of the basic VPN router set up options:
1. Pre-configured router
FlashRouters offer pre-configured routers for various VPN providers, including ExpressVPN. This option is a bit expensive, especially if you already have a router. But, if you don’t have a router this is the most simple and easy option.
2. Get a VPN-enabled router
If you are already using a router flashed with firmware that supports OpenVPN, you can easily configure VPN on your router. You can follow the steps provided by your VPN provider. It straightforward and a good option for non-tech-savvy individuals.
3. Flash router with new firmware
If you have a router with firmware that doesn’t support OpenVPN, you can flash it with a new firmware, like DD-WRT, Tomato and OpenWrt. These are free and open source. But, it is technical and not as simple as the above options. If not done correctly, it could render your router useless.
7 Best VPN Router – Details
1. Linksys WRT 3200 ACM – Overall Best VPN Routers
Linksys WRT 3200 ACM is easily the most cost-effective and fastest VPN router you can get. It boasts an impressive band throughput of 5 GHz for rapid file transfers and MU-MIMO support.
With 4 powerful antennae, it can cover a lot of space with strong signal strength. It comes loaded with customizable open-source firmware. One great feature is its ability to automatically install and run updates overnight. You don’t need to check for router firmware on a regular basis.
It supports MU-MIMO and is open-source ready. This means that it supports multiple devices like gaming consoles, mobile phones, PC, Mac, and more at the same time. The router will not slow down.
➕ Supports Open source firmware
➕ Excellent features
➖ Inconsistent coverage
How to set up ExpressVPN on Linksys Router (Video Tutorial):
2. TP-Link Archer C7 AC1750 – Easy to Set Up and Share Media Files
This TP-Link router deserves to be on this list due to its excellent affordability. It delivers fast performance and allows a wide number of options and management settings for customizability.
The router is really easy to install and there is literally no faster alternative in this price bracket. The only small problem is that it is still a little outdated in terms of peripheral features, such as supporting only USB 2.0.
It’s USB port allows you to easily share media files with other networked devices or you can connect remotely via the FTP server. You can easily set up and manage through the Tether app and offers secure Wi-Fi access for people sharing your home or office.
➕ Alexa Support
➕ Excellent features with fast speed
3. Trendnet AC2600 StreamBoost – Pre-Encrypted Wi-Fi and Supports Multiple Devices
Trendnet is another moderately budget VPN router in the router industry. It supports MU-MIMO, USB 3.0, and consistently fast throughputs. In terms of usability and installation, it is an extremely intuitive router. However, the file transfer needs are an aspect that needs improvement.
Since it is an MU-MIMO supported, you can use all kinds of devices in a busy home and it will boost its performance regardless. You don’t need to connect a VPN on this router because its Wi-Fi is pre-encrypted. The antennas are detachable as well.
➕ Alexa Support
➕ Excellent features with fast speed
4. Asus RT-AC5300 Wireless – 8 Monstrous Antennas with Powerful Wi-Fi Networks
Asus RT-AC5300 is another best wireless router with VPN support and is also one of the fastest VPN router for 2021. This router is pretty large in size as compared to most other routers, but not without good reasons. The Asus was designed with gamers in mind and offers operation in 3 frequency bands powered by 8 monstrous antennas.
If you like having the control to play around with a variety of management settings, Asus grants you all the ability to configure the device the way you want it to behave. The only downside is that it is a little too expensive.
This router can be considered as the best VPN router for home and offices because it can also be connected with other ASUS routers to create a powerful and flexible Wi-Fi network.
➕ Great coverage
➕ Excellent gaming features and speed
➖ Large device
➖ Only 1 USB 3.0 port
How to set up ExpressVPN on Asus router (Video Tutorial):
5. Asus RT-AC88U Dual-Band Router – Best for Playing Games Smoothly
The Asus RT router is a pricier option but is probably the most stylishly designed devices in the market. The MU-MIMO technology effectively serves multiple connected devices simultaneously, without dropping throughputs.
It has 8 different WAN ports, and 4 antennas, which can cover every corner of your house. The fast throughput rates for both 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz bands make this a solid option as a VPN router if you have the budget to go for an expensive solution.
It has a built-in game accelerator from WTFast that lets you enjoy playing games smoothly. It can also be connected with other ASUS routers.
➕ Great coverage
➕ Solid Wi-Fi speed
➕ Good pricing
➖ Complex firmware
➖ Strange design
6. Netgear Nighthawk X4S Smart – Best for Streaming and Gaming Purposes
The Netgear Nighthawk supports DD-WRT firmware that allows OpenVPN installation. It is one of the best router for VPN. It offers a smaller choice of port selection than Asus routers, but 4 WAN ports is adequate for most people who need it for home use.
The router offers a good range of settings and supports MU-MIMO for streaming and gaming. However, it is too expensive, and you can get better Asus models by paying a little more and receiving a lot of additional features such as antennas.
It has a powerful 1.7 GHz dual-core processor that is good for streaming and gaming purposes. You can also access the home network remotely with the Nighthawk app as well. Visit here to check out VPNs for DD-WRT Routers.
➕ Great Wi-Fi speed
➕ VDSL 2 modem
➕ Smart parental controls
➖ Does not have 1024-QAM
➖ Needs special hardware for fast speeds
How to set up ExpressVPN on Netgear (Video Tutorial):
7. Netgear – Nighthawk AC2300 – Fast Performance and Excellent Range
Speed: 2300 Mbps | Connectivity: 4 x 1G Ethernet and 2 USB ports | Features: NETGEAR Armor, Designed with a dual-core 1 GHz processor, Supports WPA2 wireless security protocols, Guest WiFi access, DoS, Firewall
The Nighthawk series of Netgear routers contain some of the best devices this company has put out over the years. The Netgear AC2300 delivers fast performance, provides excellent range, and superior usability. Setting up a VPN on this router shouldn’t take you much time.
It offers extreme speed while streaming so it doesn’t create lag or buffering issues. With the Nighthawk app, you can get notifications as to when a malware threat is detected.
➕ Great Wi-Fi speed
➕ Easy to install
➕ Robust malware
➖ Parental controls require subscription
➖ Average file transfer performance
Key Considerations for buying a VPN that Supports Router
Although a VPN supporting routers are great for connecting every device in your home to VPN servers, there are a few considerations you need to make before you decide to purchase one:
- Cost: Routers with advanced features are more expensive than basic routers. If you have multiple devices/PCs which you want to connect to VPNs, then the cost-to-benefit ratio of getting a VPN for router will be in your favor. However, if you have only one device, going through the trouble of configuring a VPN on router won’t be very cost-effective.
- Tech-savviness: Installing VPN on routers is not a very intuitive process. It can get quite involved with a series of steps involved. If you’re not very good with computers in general, a VPN assisted router might not be for you. However, for a little extra money, you can get routers with pre-configured VPNs (More on this later). So, this again boils down to how much you are willing to pay and how badly you want your entire home to rely on a single router for making a connection with VPNs.
- Server Spread: When assessing a VPN service, remember that your primary priority is country count, and your secondary priority is server count.
- Customer Support: Customer support is critically important for you if you plan on using your router for VPN tunneling. You never know when you might run into trouble and nothing works better than 24/7 support at times like these.
- Speed: Your router will probably be running the internet for multiple devices at the same time. High bandwidth and speed are imperative for a router to run VPN.
Can I use a free VPN with router?
There are no doubt many free VPNs in the market, but they are not a good choice for routers for many reasons. First, you will not be able to find a VPN that is compatible with routers, or can be configured with routers. Even if you do find a free VPN that works with routers, it will not provide you enough support.
Free VPNs offer a few servers (2 to 4) with a large number of users, resulting in poor connection speeds and constant connection drops. Therefore, with a free VPN you will not be able to do much. Additionally, free VPN providers monetize their service by heavily relying on ads, so you will be seeing a lot of annoying ads and tracking cookies.
Therefore, it is recommended to stick to premium VPNs for router like ExpressVPN. It also offers a 30-day money-back guarantee so you can use it free of cost for 30 days.
ExpressVPN is Our Recommended VPN for Routers
Number of Servers: 3,000+ | Server Locations: 160 | IP Addresses: N/A | Maximum Devices Supported: 5
ExpressVPN is our recommended and one of the best router VPN 2021 because it happens to support different router brands and are easily installed on them. Our ExpressVPN router setup guide will help you explain the process step-by-step.
Why we chose ExpressVPN as our preferred VPN to use on a router is because it has 3,000 servers that are available in 94 countries. Not only that, it has the strongest encryption i.e. 256-bit.
ExpressVPN also offers blazing fast speed. Imagine the internet speed you will get when you combine ExpressVPN to any of the routers that I have mentioned on this page.
FAQs – Best VPN Routers 2021
If you want to secure your internet connection with a VPN on multiple devices simultaneously, then you need a router VPN. This way you will not only be able to surf the internet privately, it will also save you a lot of time as you don’t have to set up VPN on multiple devices separately.
Yes, you need a router that is compatible with VPNs as most routers provided by your internet service provider (ISPs) are not compatible with VPNs. To use a VPN on your router, you need one of the routers mentioned above with firmware that supports VPN usage.
Yes, you can put a VPN on your router if it’s firmware supports VPNs. It is worth noting that routers offered by most ISPs have software does not support a VPN connection. However, you can get a router that supports VPN and manually configure it on your router for the VPN to work. Or, if your router firmware does not support VPN, you can flash your router with a new firmware.
Our recommended best VPN router 2021 is Linksys WRT 3200 ACM because it supports all devices, fast enough to stream and play games, and is open-source. It is followed by other top VPN routers that I have mentioned on the list.
Having said that, ExpressVPN is our recommended VPN service because it offers an exclusive router app you can install on your routers.
It has 3,000 servers, blazing fast speed, and is available for all routers. You can also read our ExpressVPN review guide in detail.
Since VPN has become a mandatory software that encrypts all your online data and keeps your online activity hidden, many people would want their every device secured over the internet.