Europe is the most developed continent of the world with strong legal protections for the democratic rights of citizens. In the context of individual privacy, laws such as GDPR make sure that customers have a say in how their data is handled and used by companies they have a relationship with.
Unfortunately, despite these legislative requirements, most member states of the EU are still violating the privacy of users. Moreover, there is the problem of geo-restrictions on many popular streaming services which are only accessible from certain regions of Europe but not in others.
To these problems, the easiest solution is to use the best European VPNs in 2021.
6 Best VPNs for Europe in 2021
The following are some of the top VPN services for people in the EU.
ExpressVPN is powered by a network of 3,000+ servers in 94 countries. Most of these servers are located in Europe. The provider offers lightweight apps that work smoothly for a wide range of compatible devices including Mac, Windows, iOS, and Android. The powerful server network is equally efficient for working with popular streaming services as it is for unblocking torrent websites from both within and outside Europe. ExpressVPN is not only the best VPN to use in Spain but also in the least-friendly European countries such as Greece.
In terms of security features, ExpressVPN sticks to basics but covers this department exceptionally well. Among the list of features includes kill switch, split-tunneling, and IP/DNS leak protection. It is one of the few providers in the industry that keep no personally identifiable information of users, which is an important point for European users, especially those living in Denmark. It is no doubt one of the best VPN for Denmark.
Surfshark has a network of 3,200+ servers in 65 countries. The majority of its servers are within Europe. The service is efficient at unblocking streaming apps like US Netflix, BBC iPlayer, and Hulu, and also supports torrents on many servers.
Other than that, Surfshark also gives users multiple features to boost their online privacy including MultiHop, CleanWeb, Camouflage Mode, and more. The fact that it is based in the British Virgin Islands is also highly favorable from the point of view of European users who are frustrated by the lack of privacy in these countries. The no-logs policy further strengthens Surfshark’s ability to protect user privacy. It is also one of the best BVI-based VPN in Portugal.
You can attain Surfshark for $2.49/mo . The service also offers the benefit of unlimited simultaneous connections and a 30-day refund period for all users. These factors have given Surfshark positive remarks in reviews of its performance.
NordVPN offers 2429 servers within Europe. This makes it one of the largest and one of the best VPN Europe. Overall, NordVPN has 5,200+ servers in 59 countries.
The service is known for its good balance between speed, security, and unblocking power. European users can utilize its vast range of servers to unblock websites, streaming apps, and torrenting websites. At the same time, they can boost their online privacy with the help of features such as DoubleVPN, CyberSec, and Onion over VPN.
These features have earned NordVPN a lot of praise in its review. The service can be purchased for $3.30/mo (VPN Awareness Month - 2 year plan at 72% off + 3 months FREE) and you can instantly enjoy 6 simultaneous connections and a 30-day money-back guarantee. You can also get NordVPN free trial for 30 days to test the service. With its 30-days money-back guarantee you can also test and see the best VPN to use in Finland and other European countries.
PureVPN has 769 servers within Europe alone. On the whole, the provider has a network of 6,500+ servers in 140+ countries. If you need better online privacy while also avoiding speed drops that commonly result from VPN usage, the EU servers of PureVPN can help you attain both benefits at the same time.
In addition, the provider has a strong list of privacy features that can ensure users in Europe remain safe from privacy violations at the hands of governments and countries. It uses advanced features such as kill switch and IP/DNS protection to ensure users can maintain their right to privacy in Europe.
The service also works well with several popular streaming services that are geo-restricted in some regions of Europe. These services include Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, BBC iPlayer, Hulu in Europe, and more. It is also one of the top VPNs for streaming in Netherlands and other EU countries.
It is also one of the overall top recommendations as highlighted in this review.
CyberGhost is based in Romania, which is one of the countries with strong privacy protection laws. The provider operates a large network of 7000+ servers in 90 countries, with the major strength of these based in Europe.
The combination of a no-logs service, privacy-friendly jurisdiction, and support for streaming/p2p services makes CyberGhost a decent all-around service to have to keep your privacy intact in Europe. It is also the best VPN for Italy if you’re visiting the country. However, the provider has a problem with slow speeds as mentioned in its review.
You can obtain CyberGhost for $2.25/mo . The provider offers a 45-day money-back guarantee and 7 simultaneous connections.
Private Internet Access (PIA) has thousands of servers in Europe. In total, its network comprises 35,000+ servers in 78+ countries. The service is known for its remarkable ability to unblock streaming services in most parts of Europe. It is also efficient at unblocking torrenting websites and protecting user’s identities so they can safely download torrents.
To top it off, PIA also delivers strong AES-256 encryption to further consolidate user privacy, along with features such as DNS secure, IPv6 protection, and kill switch. These provide enough defensive capabilities to evade widespread surveillance in many European countries including the UK. It is also one of the top VPN providers in Iceland.
PIA is currently available for $2.08/mo and the package comes with 10 simultaneous connections and 30-day refund policy. Due to these features, PIA has built up a solid reputation.
To know more about this VPN, read our detailed PIA VPN review.
Top 3 Free VPNs for Europe
Free services are not generally recommended because there have been multiple cases of scams. The very services that are supposed to protect user privacy have, at times, sold private information of their customers for a profit.
Nonetheless, there are some trustworthy and legitimate free VPN providers that you can use in Europe:
For more information about free providers, see this article on free VPNs.
Why do you Need a VPN in Europe
Europe is represented by some of the most progressive and liberal countries of the world that promote free speech and ensure the protection of basic civil rights of all. Nonetheless, many countries still face serious issues such as censorship and online privacy. Some of the main issues that VPNs can solve for internet users in Europe are:
- State-sponsored surveillance: Mass surveillance has become a common theme in several parts of Europe including Turkey, the UK, and France. The European Union actually funds mass surveillance of citizens throughout the continent. These gross violations of individual privacy need to be strongly opposed by citizens and the best way to do this is to utilize VPN services as a measure of privacy protection. Countries that were thought to have no state-sponsored surveillance are slowly adapting this method to monitor their citizen’s online activities. One of the recent examples is Sweden, where due to the FRA-Law, the state is now allowed to monitor internet traffic. The only way to protect yourself and your online activities is by using the best Swedish VPN.
- Torrent restrictions: Enforcement against online piracy is notably strong within the EU. In many European countries, many torrenting websites are banned. Penalties for piracy through torrents are quite harsh in some of these countries with hefty fines and even jail time. A VPN for Europe will not only make blocked torrent websites available for use but also ensures you can perform downloads in anonymity.
- Accessing geo-restrictions: Many popular streaming services are based in Europe, but their availability is often confined to the country of origin. Some of these services include ITV, BBC iPlayer, RaiTV, and many more. To gain access, you’ll need to obtain an IP address belonging to the country where the streaming service in question is available. This is most easily achieved with a VPN service with a large server based in Europe.
- Staying safe over public Wi-Fi: Breaches of user privacy over public Wi-Fi is a common enough story in pretty much every corner of the world including Europe. VPNs enhance your security with sophisticated encryption, which makes dramatically reduces the probability of a hacker successfully launching an attack against you on public Wi-Fi.
Disclaimer: We do not encourage nor condone the use of VPNs for any illegal activity, including copyright infringement.