The situation with internet freedom is declining in India with every passing year due to the spread of fake news, disinformation, and the internet’s subsequent blackouts. The internet shutdowns in India under the jurisdiction of this government have become much more frequent than the previous ones.
According to Freedom House, India had the highest number of internet shutdowns between 2019-2020, after excluding Jammu and Kashmir. Cases of harassment of journalists, removal of cultural and political content, and trolling have only made the situation worse in the country.
Our advice to Indian users is to get the best VPN for India to protect themselves over the internet until the situation gets better.
A VPN will encrypt their connection, and let them enjoy the internet freedom they deserve by connecting them to a different IP address. We tested 150+ VPNs providers and rounded 6 VPNs that are great to use in the country. Out of these, ExpressVPN is our recommended choice for India.
6 Best VPNs for India (August 2021 In-Depth Analysis)
We spent 36 hours and tested 150+ VPNs on the basis of servers, speeds, security features, refund policy, simultaneous connections, encryption, bypassing capabilities, and more. The following best VPNs for India offer bufferless streaming, ultimate online privacy, and anonymity to users:
1. The Best VPN for India – ExpressVPN
ExpressVPN is the best VPN for India. This VPN consists of 3000+ servers in 94 countries, including 3 servers in India, located in Mumbai and Chennai. With these servers, Indian citizens can bypass the censorship imposed on social media content and download torrents with strong identity protection against authorities.
With such a vast network spread across the globe, accessing internet streaming content such as Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, and BBC iPlayer, and Hulu in India will never be an issue again. With its one-click connectivity and easy unblocking capabilities, this VPN is one of the best VPN services for streaming.
Similarly, using ExpressVPN’s Indian servers, you can easily access popular Indian channels such as Colors TV, DD National, Shemaroo TV, Sony Sab, and many more easily.
As for speeds, ExpressVPN offers an average speed of 78.91 Mbps on a 100 Mbps connection, which is fantastic for bufferless streaming, torrenting, and unblocking geo-restricted websites. You can confirm these speeds through our ExpressVPN speed test guide.
It is also based in the British Virgin Islands. With the country’s privacy-affirming laws, there’s an important benefit for Indian users who don’t want themselves being logged.
The VPN offers some top-notch security features to users among which ExpressVPN’s kill switch is super-effective. Others include DNS leak protection, anonymous browsing, AES 256-it encryption, OpenVPN protocol, and more.
We tested this VPN’s DNS leak feature by connecting to a Bulgarian server and you can see below that our actual IP address and location is completely hidden:
You can use this VPN on multiple devices and operating systems including Android, Windows, iOS, Mac, Linux, Fire Stick, Kodi, Roku, PS4, and more.
ExpressVPN is overall the best VPN in India, with its top-notch features and service, that comes at a cost of $6.67/mo with a 30-day money-back guarantee and 5 simultaneous connections.
For more details about this VPN, check out our ExpressVPN review.
2. Budget-friendly VPN for India – Surfshark
Surfshark is known to be a budget-friendly VPN for India. Why? Because this VPN comes at an affordable price of $2.49/mo .
Surfshark consists of 3200+ servers in 65 countries including 3 servers in India, located in Mumbai, Indore, and Chennai. These servers are highly efficient for unblocking streaming services like US Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Disney+, YouTube TV US, Spotify, and other general websites within India.
Similarly, the Indian servers efficiently work with local Indian streaming services like Hotstar, Star Plus, Zee Anmol, and Voot for expatriates living abroad.
When it comes to speeds, this VPN offers an average speed of 72.75 Mbps on a 100 Mbps connection, which lets you unblock sites without any issues. While the speeds are not as great as ExpressVPN, it still offers impressive speeds to stream HD quality content. You can get more information about its speeds in our Surfshark speed test guide.
Surfshark is based in the British Virgin Islands. In line with the country’s privacy-focused laws, Surfshark is committed to protecting user privacy by refraining from storing logs, which is important for privacy-conscious Indian citizens.
Additionally, Surfshark has privacy features such as MultiHop, Whitelister, and CleanWeb, along with military-grade AES-256 bit encryption. Users in India concerned with their privacy can take advantage of these Surfshark features for their benefit.
We tested this VPN’s DNS leak feature and you can see that our Indian IP was not leaked at all:
The service is also compatible with all the major platforms like Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, Android TV, iOS, and more.
With a price as low as Surfshark’s, you can barely get any VPN offering this fantastic service at such a reasonable price. You can enjoy this VPN on all your devices without needing to log out from any, as it offers unlimited simultaneous connections to users.
It further offers a 30-day money-back guarantee to users who want to test out its features. In case you want to opt for some other VPN service, you can also cancel your Surfshark subscription.
For more information, check out this Surfshark review.
3. Secure VPN for India – NordVPN
NordVPN is known to offer the most secure service in India. This VPN offers some state-of-the-art security features including DoubleVPN, Onion Over VPN, CyberSec, AES 256-bit encryption, etc. This VPN also ensures a log-free experience for users to remain completely anonymous and safe.
NordVPN operates a network of 5200+ servers in 59 countries, out of which 30+ servers are in India, located in Chennai and Mumbai. This makes this VPN a powerful solution for residents in India and travellers to access censored social media and geo-restricted content with ease.
Residents of India can easily access international content such as BT-Sports, Channel4, ITV, DAZN, HBO Now, NBC Live, and many others. Similarly, people living abroad can keep up with their favourite shows on Dangal TV, DD Retro, Sony Entertainment Television, Sony Pal, and Star Utsav.
NordVPN streams all these services without any signs of buffering and offers an average speed of 75.81 Mbps on a 100 Mbps connection. If you don’t believe us, you can check out our NordVPN speed test guide for this.
As for security, we put this VPN’s IP leak protection to test and it ensured that our IP doesn’t leak. Just check out the image below to confirm this:
Let’s not forget that NordVPN is a safe choice for users who want to access the internet in India with foolproof security. It is available at a cost of $3.30/mo and comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee along with 6 simultaneous connections.
For more information, check out our NordVPN review.
4. The Fastest VPN for India – IPVanish
IPVanish is the fastest option for India. This VPN offers unbelievable super-fast speeds of 82.39 Mbps on a 100 Mbps connection, which can unblock any website or streaming service within seconds in HD quality. If you don’t believe us, then you can always go through our IPVanish speed test guide for more details on its speeds.
This VPN has a server network of 1600+ servers spread over 75+ locations, out of which 8 of which are located in Chennai and New Delhi. Indian users can easily access international streaming services such as Euro-Sports, Yupp TV US, CBS, NBC Live, and Foxtel Now anytime using this VPN’s offshore servers.
Similarly, local Indian content such as Zee TV, Colors Rishtey, DD Bharati, Voot, and Hotstar is always accessible via the Indian servers if you are an Indian expatriate or living abroad.
IPVanish is headquartered in the US. Although the country is a member of the 14 Eyes, this VPN still claims that it does not collect any user logs. The provider is also fully capable of getting past bans imposed on social media, which tends to happen in India from time to time.
Other than that, the service delivers privacy-boosting features such as split-tunnelling, internet kill switch, AES-256 bit encryption, etc. Through our test, we confirmed that this VPN doesn’t leak our location and IP address. You can check this out in the image below:
IPVanish is available at an impressive price of $2.67/mo and comes with unlimited simultaneous connections and a money-back guarantee for 30 days
For more information, check out our IPVanish review.
5. User-friendly VPN for India – CyberGhost
CyberGhost is a user-friendly VPN for India. This VPN offers separate modes for streaming, torrenting, gaming, and browsing. It also offers multiple easy-to-use apps for devices and operating systems like Windows, macOS, Android, iOS, Firestick, Android TV, Roku, Xbox, PlayStation, and more.
CyberGhost has an impressively large network of 7000+ servers spread in 90 countries, including 32 servers in Mumbai, India. So if you’re looking for a VPN that offers a sizable pool of Indian IP addresses to access geo-restricted local sites abroad, CyberGhost is a decent choice.
Indian users can utilize this massive VPN network to access international streaming content such as NINE, ESPN+, Spotify, UKTV, Sling TV, NHK, CCTV, etc. within the country.
Similarly, you can watch your favourite Indian movies on local movie channels such as Cinema TV, Housefull Action, Rishtey Cineplex, Star Gold, and Zee Cinema, thanks to CyberGhost’s high-speed servers in Mumbai.
This VPN service doesn’t offer lightning-fast speeds, but they’re still great to unblock multiple websites in India without any issues. While this VPN offers an average speed of 71.65 Mbps on a 100 Mbps connection, we tested 9 of its offshore servers in detail for their speeds. If you want to learn about these server speeds in detail, you can check them out in our CyberGhost speed test guide.
CyberGhost is based in Romania, another country that doesn’t enforce any mandatory data logging on ISPs/VPNs. For this reason, users in India can use CyberGhost as an evasion tactic against local surveillance.
Along with that, this VPN also offers some notable security features and encryption protocols including AES 256-bit encryption, kill switch, DNS leak protection, split tunnelling, and more to encrypt user connections in India.
This VPN confirmed that it doesn’t leak user IP when we tested its DNS leak feature:
The provider comes packed with extra features such as 7 simultaneous connections and a 45-day refund period, at a price of $1.99/mo .
For more information, check out our CyberGhost review.
6. Best VPN for Torrenting in India – PIA
PIA is the best option for torrenting in India. This VPN offers a P2P-optimized server network of 35500+ servers in 78 countries, with port forwarding and SOCKS5 support. It further offers 71 dedicated servers in India.
Aside from torrenting, this VPN is also a great option for streaming and keeping your data encrypted. It offers excellent unblocking capabilities, especially when it comes to unblocking Netflix, Hulu, Disney, UKTV, BBC iPlayer, ITV, and more for the people residing within the Indian territory.
Furthermore, PIA can also unblock local Indian content such as B4U Movies, Colors Cineplex, Maha Movie, Sony Max, Star Gold 2, and Zee Classic for fans of Indian television living abroad.
This VPN offers great speeds for torrenting and streaming. With an average speed of 70 Mbps on a 100 Mbps connection, this VPN doesn’t lag at all.
The service is based in the USA but has a completely log-free policy that ensures your privacy remains guarded against government surveillance becoming a concern within India.
The strong AES-256 encryption, along with features like internet kill switch, DNS secure, and IP/DNS leak protection, ensures that you remain free from the possibility of accidental leaks while downloading files.
We confirmed that this VPN wouldn’t leak your Indian IP by testing its DNS leak protection feature. Check out the image below to confirm this:
It is also easily configurable on popular devices such as macOS, Windows, Android, iOS, Android TV, Firestick, Linux, router, etc.
You can avail PIA for $2.08/mo if you want a VPN for torrenting and get a 30-day money-back guarantee with 10 simultaneous connections.
Get more information about this VPN in this PIA review.
Test Methodology: How we tested the best VPN for India
We spent days testing 150+ VPNs based on a set criteria. Following are the 5 parameters on which we tested the best VPNs for India:
1. Security and privacy: These are the most significant features of all VPN providers. Maintaining your privacy online is one of the primary purposes of using a VPN. Therefore, all the VPNs we tested offer efficient security features including AES 256-bit encryption, kill switch, split tunneling, DNS leak protection, etc.
2. Speed: Myths around speeds while using a VPN are not entirely true. A reliable VPN service doesn’t slow down more than 30% of your speed at all. The VPNs listed above offer speedy connections to users. According to our testing, IPVanish offered the fastest connections with an average speed of over 80 Mbps on the majority of its servers.
3. Geo-blocks bypassing: VPNs are also great for bypassing geo-restrictions. With internet shutdowns in the country, you might want to access content within the country that is banned. VPNs would allow you to do that through its thousands of secure servers across the world.
4. Servers: When it comes to using a VPN, then why get one that has only a few servers across the world? Therefore, we selected all the VPNs for India that offer over a thousand servers across the globe.
5. Money-back guarantee: Refund policies are another major concern when it comes to offering a good after-sales user experience. Users shouldn’t regret subscribing to a VPN and getting stuck with it if they don’t like the service. All the VPNs above offer a minimum of 30-day money-back guarantee to users so they can test all its features for a month.
6. Customer support: VPN users may face some inconveniences while using these services. Therefore, all the providers above offer live chat support to users in case they face some issue or have a query. Among these, ExpressVPN offers the most efficient 24/7 live chat support to users.
4 Reasons Why you need a VPN in India?
The Indian cyberspace is getting more restricted each day with internet shutdowns from time to time. The government monitors all user activities over the internet and collects logs. Multiple websites have also been blocked in the country. To curb all this, you require a VPN. Here are the top 4 reasons why you require a VPN for India:
1. Internet Access Regulation:
For quite some time now, the Indian Government has been blocking access to many websites. The main concern here is that they do not only block illegal, immoral, or pornographic websites. In 2011 and 2016, Facebook was banned in the country without any warning.
Multiple internet shutdowns have been seen since then. The government is now using a blanket law that prohibits citizens from accessing websites on a specific list. Upon violating the law, you can face a penalty of a prison sentence of up to three years.
2. Government’s Surveillance:
The Indian government has given a green signal to 10 different federal agencies to intercept and monitor information from any device.
Apart from monitoring and intercepting, they can also decrypt the information. The agencies are also overseeing tax investigation, narcotics, financial crime, and others.
This information on its own is already alarming, but even more so given that the Indian Supreme Court has recognized the right to privacy as a fundamental right. This means that the government is giving authorization for such activities in violation of the law.
A similar sort of censorship and surveillance can be strongly felt in its one of India’s neighbouring countries – Sri Lanka. That is why residents there have already started using secure VPNs for Sri Lanka.
3. Media Streaming Legislation:
Media streaming and torrenting in the country are more in a vague area. Although streaming isn’t illegal, it will be considered illegal if the website is on the banned sites. According to the High-Court ruling in 2016, streaming media is not illegal; however, distribution, exhibition, or sale of copyright material is.
At the time of the ruling, the ISP providers were handing out notices to their users that all media streaming activities were punishable offences – including viewing. As you can see, there are legal fine lines involved in the matter, and you certainly don’t want to get caught on a technicality here.
4. Proxy Blocking:
According to different reports, Reliance Jio, one of the country’s largest telecommunication companies, has been blocking proxy websites. This is a clear violation of net neutrality, which works on the basic principle that ISPs must not exert any form of influence on data.
Multiple VPN provider websites were also found to be blocked by the same ISP company. Other ISP companies can also follow the same route and start their own blocking. Again, the issue here is unclear boundaries between what is legal or not. Either way, internet users in India are at their mercy.
FAQs – Best VPN for India
Let’s take a look at some frequently asked questions regarding the best VPN for India in 2021.
Yes, using a VPN is completely legal in India. There are no laws regarding VPN use in India, so you’re free to use one wherever you go. Just make sure you aren’t involved in illegal or immoral activities while using a VPN in India.
ExpressVPN works best in India. With its [server_count id='13500']+ high-speed servers spread across [server_country_count id='13500'] countries equipped with AES-256 military-grade encryption, you will receive the best security and online freedom one can imagine.
ExpressVPN, Surfshark, and NordVPN are the best VPNs for gaming in India. In 2021, a report stated that there are 365 million online gamers in India. With such an enormous number of gamers, you’d definitely want a VPN provider that can offer enough servers and locations worldwide. The three providers we have listed are fully capable of handling the needs and requirements of online gamers in India.
PUBG has been banned in India multiple times in the past, but these bans aren’t permanent. Here’s how you can bypass the PUBG ban with a VPN in India:
- Subscribe to one of the VPN services listed above (ExpressVPN is highly recommended).
- Install the VPN app on your phone/PC.
- Launch the VPN app and enter your login credentials.
- Choose a server location where PUBG isn’t banned, such as the US or UK.
- Launch PUBG, and enjoy playing nail-biting matches with your friends!
The following are the steps to access TikTok in India with a VPN. Before we start, you have to make sure that your device location service or GPS is completely disabled.
- Subscribe to a VPN provider (We recommend ExpressVPN).
- Download its app on your device.
- Log in to the application using ExpressVPN’s account details.
- Connect to a UK or Canadian server from the server list of the application.
- Once connected, you should be able to access TikTok.
Here is how you can get an Indian IP address with a VPN:
1. Subscribe to a reliable VPN service (ExpressVPN is our top choice).
2. Install the VPN app on your device.
3. Launch the app and sign in.
4. Connect to an Indian server.
5. Once connected, enjoy any Indian streaming service like Voot easily.
Best VPN in India: Final Thoughts
With rising conservatism and extremist elements in the Indian political landscape, VPNs’ importance is only likely to increase as a tool to promote critical voices without fear of censorship and surveillance.
ExpressVPN is the best VPN for India for countering state-sponsored threats to the privacy of internet users. It also allows you to gain access to geo-restricted services from all over the globe.
Therefore, this VPN is the only proven method to counter the Indian government’s authoritarian measures and circle around censorship, which is routinely applied on the web.