Surveillance and data retention are a reality that Australians can no longer ignore. The country has enacted laws that violate the basic democratic rights of every individual to maintain their privacy.
The easiest way to ensure privacy is by using a VPN for Australia to encrypt your online traffic. If you don’t want to pay for a VPN, we bring you 7 free VPNs for Australia that offer decent security, and other features to keep you protected online.
However, free VPNs come with tons of limitations, in terms of bandwidth, servers, speed, and security. We recommend using ExpressVPN instead, as it offers the best in class performance.
7 Best Free VPNs for Australia (October 2021 In-Depth Analysis)
Unfortunately, not all free VPNs work in Australia. To find the 7 best free VPNs for Australia, we have tested 50+ free services on various criteria like speed, security, bandwidth, servers, and more. Here is an in-depth analysis of top free VPNs for Australia in 2021:
1.Hotspot Shield – 500 MB Data Per Day with 1 US Server Only
Hotspot Shield is a great free VPN for Australia, offering reliable speeds owing to its unique Catapult Hydra Protocol feature. This tool compresses data and improves performance, consequently boosting your connection speeds.
Hotspot Shield provides 500 MB of data per day, which adds up to 15 GB of free data per month. But, with Hotspot Shield, you will have to wait the next day to get 500 MB of data as you cannot use all the data in one day. If you run out of the 500 MB per day limit, you will have to wait till the next day to get an additional 500 MB.
Unfortunately, it doesn’t offer servers in Australia in its free version, as there is only 1 virtual server in the US. If you want to watch BFI Player in Australia or other British streaming sites, you will need to get its premium subscription.
Although you won’t be able to unblock local Australian channels abroad, it is a good choice for streaming lovers as you can access American websites with Hotspot Shield’s US server.
Hotspot Shield allows only one device connection at a time and is easy to set up and install. However, keep in mind that its free version is supported by ads, so you will see a lot of intrusive ads popping up.
Hotspot Shield also offers a built-in malware protection feature as well as 256-bit encryption for data protection. On its free version, you don’t get access to its live chat support.
You can learn more about this service in our Hotspot Shield review.
2. Windscribe – 10 GB Data Allowance with 10 Server Locations
Windscribe offers 10 GB of bandwidth per month on its free version and it allows unlimited simultaneous connection. If you want an additional 5 GB of free data, all you have to do is tweet about Windscribe, and they will add 5 GB of data to your account.
With the Windscribe free plan, you get access to 10 server locations. These servers are available in the U.S., Canada, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Norway, Romania. Switzerland, the U.K., and Hong Kong.
There are no Australian servers, but it does offer free servers in the UK, so you can access Channel 4 in Australia and watch your favorite British shows.
The free version is quite efficient if you’re simply looking to boost your online privacy to evade the problem of surveillance and cybercriminals tracking your activities online in Australia. It offers a Stealth mode that allows you to bypass restrictions and censorship.
Windscribe free plan comes with a no-log policy and IP/DNS leak protection to keep your data protected all the time. Overall connection speeds are also great. You can learn about this service in the Windscribe review.
3. ProtonVPN – Unlimited Bandwidth with 3 Servers Only
ProtonVPN is a great free Australian VPN that offers unlimited bandwidth to users. This is ideal if you want to download files or stream movies and shows without any data restrictions.
However, it only offers 3 server locations on its free version: Netherlands, Japan, and the US. It doesn’t offer an Australian server in its free version though.
With only 3 server locations, you are bound to experience slow speeds. During testing, we got an average speed of 34.63 Mbps on a 100 Mbps connection. There was more than 65% of speed drop after VPN connection. The speed was enough for browsing, but it is not enough for watching YouTube videos in Ultra HD.
You cannot unlock Netflix with these servers unless you upgrade your subscription. Unfortunately, ProtonVPN does not work with popular streaming sites like Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Hulu, and more. Nonetheless, for private browsing in Australia, it is one of the best free VPNs you can have.
If we talk about security, ProtonVPN is a solid option as it offers a Secure Core feature that bypasses restrictions, and protects your connection against cyberattacks and additional vulnerabilities. For data authentication, ProtonVPN uses RSA-4028 handshake and SHA-348 hash.
It does not keep any user logs and it is also based in a safe jurisdiction of Switzerland, which is outside the 5, 9, and 14 Eyes Alliance.
ProtonVPN is not a great choice for streaming, but if you are interested you can try its premium features using its 7-day trial. If you don’t upgrade after 7 days, don’t worry as it reverts your account back to the free version automatically.
Find out more about this service in our ProtonVPN review.
4. TunnelBear – 500 MB Data Per Month with 23+ Servers
TunnelBear is one of the most user-friendly free VPNs for Australia. It probably has the coolest app design and offers more server options than the majority of free services for internet users. Its app has an animated bear that burrows its way through the map to connect to different server locations.
TunnelBear free offers 500 MB of data per month, which is very little for data-intensive tasks, as you can only browse with such little data. If you want an additional 1GB of free data, you can tweet about TunnelBear, or refer it to a friend.
With TunnelBear free, you get access to over 23 server locations, including Australia. Other server locations include the US, Canada, UK, Japan, Spain, the Netherlands, New Zealand, and more.
The provider also has a satisfactory logging policy for privacy-conscious Australian users. Nonetheless, the data limit restricts the functionality of the app severely. It can only be used if you have low VPN usage requirements.
Unfortunately, on its free version, you cannot unblock Netflix US, BBC iPlayer, Hulu, and other geo-restricted sites. TunnelBear does support torrenting on all its servers, but the bandwidth is too little for downloading large files.
Speed-wise TunnelBear is a reliable option, as during testing it delivered an average speed of 55.81 Mbps on a 100 Mbps connection.
TunnelBear is compatible with Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, Chrome, and Firefox. It is also known as the best free VPN for Linux Ubuntu. TunnelBear does follow a no-logs policy but it does log some user data like bandwidth usage, timestamps, and operating system of your device. Even though this data is non-identifiable, it might be worrisome for users who want maximum anonymity.
For more information, you can read our TunnelBear review.
5. Hide.Me – 10 GB Monthly Data Cap with 5 Server Locations
Hide.Me is another great free Australian VPN that offers free VPN as well as proxy solutions for Australia. The VPN offers 4 server locations which include Singapore, Canada, Netherlands, US East, and US West. However, there are no servers in Australia on its free version.
The service offers a 10GB/month bandwidth limit. It is more than enough for streaming in SD quality and downloading torrents.
Unfortunately, it doesn’t work with most streaming services including Netflix, so that limits its utility for people in Australia. When it comes to unblocking Netflix, it’s a trial and error as during testing it was inconsistent.
Hide.Me does support torrenting on all its free servers, and there is a SOCKS5 proxy and a kill switch to ensure online privacy while torrenting. Hide.Me also gave fast download speeds during testing. On a 100 Mbps connection, it delivered an average speed of 73 Mbps, which is great considering it’s a free VPN.
Hide.Me offers a Stealth Guard feature that prevents your data from being exposed in case your VPN connection is disabled. Similarly, it also offers IPv6 and DNS leak protection. To use Hide.Me free version, you don’t have to register or create an account, so it is great for users who want online anonymity.
You can use the free version on one device at a time. To find out more about this service, read our Hide.Me review.
6. Speedify – 2 GB Data Cap Each Month with Servers in 53 Countries
Speedify is another great free VPN for Australia offering 2GB of data per month on its free version. What’s best is that Speedify offers the same number of servers to both premium and free users. You get access to servers in over 53 countries, which is more than what any other free VPN is offering.
Another great feature offered by Speedify is called Channel Bonding. This feature boosts your connection speeds by combining your Wi-Fi with cellular data/ 4G. This way, it sends twice as much traffic, so you don’t face connectivity issues. However, you might run out of data pretty quickly.
Unfortunately, Speedify free does not work with Netflix US, Hulu, and more. So, it is not a reliable option for getting around geo-blocks. You can unblock YouTube, Facebook, Google, and other social media sites with Speedify.
Speedify is a secure option for Australia as it offers ChaCha 256-bit encryption, an automatic kill switch, and leak protection.
Speedify is headquartered in the US, but it does keep a strict no-logs policy, so your privacy is secured with this free VPN. Also, you don’t need to register or create an account to use the free VPN. It is great for ensuring online privacy.
You can learn more about this service in our Speedify review.
7. Avira Phantom VPN – 500 MB Data Per Month with 36+ Server Locations
Avira Phantom VPN also offers a free plan with 500 MB of data per month. It is not enough for streaming movies, but it is a good option if you want to conceal your online traffic while browsing or on social media.
Avira Phantom VPN allows access to servers in 36 countries, but you cannot unblock regional content with it, as it does not work with most geo-restricted sites like Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, and more. During testing, we did manage to unblock Netflix US, but it was inconsistent.
This free VPN does allow torrenting on its free servers, but its bandwidth limitation proves to be a hindrance as you cannot download large torrent files.
Compatibility-wise, Avira Phantom offers apps for iOS, Android, Windows, macOS, and more. You can connect as many devices as you want on a single Avira Phantom VPN account.
A downside of this free VPN is that there is no kill switch available, so you won’t be protected in case of a sudden VPN connection drop. Also, during testing, Avira Phantom VPN delivered extremely slow speeds (25.63 Mbps on a 100 Mbps connection) with more than a 70% speed drop.
You can learn more about this service in our Avira Phantom VPN review.
How we tested the free VPNs for Australia
We have tested 50+ free VPNs to find the best ones for Australia. We tested and ranked these free VPNs based on the following criteria:
- Completely free: When looking for a free VPN, make sure it is completely free or it gives a legit money-back guarantee so you can try it risk-free. For example, ExpressVPN offers a no-question-asked money-back guarantee, allowing you to try it risk-free for 30 days.
- Fast speeds: Most free VPNs don’t offer the required speeds and entice you into upgrading to their paid version. Hide.Me was the fastest offering 77 Mbps speed on a 100 Mbps connection.
- Number of servers: The best free VPN Australia should offer multiple servers in various locations. From the VPNs mentioned above, From the VPNs mentioned above, Speedify and TunnelBear offer the largest server network with access to various server locations.
- Unblocking capabilities: Most people use a VPN to bypass geo-blocks. Therefore the free VPN should be able to unblock geo-restricted content like Netflix, Hulu, HBO, BBC iPlayer, and more from Australia.
- Security features: The best free VPN for Australia should have strong security features including a kill switch, DNS leak protection, and a strict no-logs policy.
Why Free VPNs are discouraged in Australia?
You’ll find below a few reasons that should be enough to convince you as to why using a free VPN in Australia is not an ideal choice:
- Free VPN providers are known for offering limited bandwidth on their accounts.
- They sell user data and personal information to various third-party entities.
- Most of the free VPN providers offer 3 or 5 servers across the globe.
- With just a few servers and large numbers of users connecting to them, it is highly likely that you will face slow speed issues on a regular basis.
Some benefits of Premium VPNs:
Free VPNs can never be better than premium VPNs. Let’s check out why:
- Huge server network with servers in many major countries.
- Unlimited bandwidth for streaming, torrenting, and gaming purposes.
- Automatic load-balancing on each server for a better online experience.
- AES-256 encryption and no-log policy for complete security and privacy.
- Money-back guarantee and compatibility with all major platforms.
3 Reasons Why You Need a VPN for Australia
There are several reasons why VPNs have become important in Australia:
- Metadata retention: The government in Australia has passed laws for ISPs to retain metadata of citizens and be made available to government and intelligence agencies if demanded. This mass data collection is a violation of the privacy of Australian citizens. VPNs that retain no user logs and use solid encryption can help you stay under the radar of government surveillance.
- Accessing torrenting websites: Australia has strict anti-piracy laws which led to the ban of many popular torrenting websites in the country. VPNs not only unblock torrent websites but hide your identity so you can download torrents safely.
- Access geo-restricted websites: Many websites, especially streaming services, are geo-restricted and either totally inaccessible or have limited content to offer. With a VPN, you can bypass these restrictions in Australia and gain complete access to websites like Netflix.
FAQs – Free VPN Australia
Hotspot Shield, Windscribe, and ProtonVPN are the best free VPNs for Australia. These VPNs work in Australia and offer a range of security features to keep you protected online.
However, these free services come with certain limitations, in terms of speeds, data caps, and more. If you want unlimited bandwidth in Australia, you can try ExpressVPN and utilize its free trial (for smartphones) or 30-day refund period (desktop users).
ProtonVPN, Windscribe, Hotspot Shield, Hide.Me, and TunnelBear are some completely free VPNs for Australia. To use these free VPNs, you don’t need to subscribe or give your credit card details.
You can watch Australian TV abroad with a free VPN having powerful servers within Australia. Some of the best free VPNs to watch Australian TV are Speedify and TunnelBear, as they offer servers in Australia.
The need for VPNs is constantly on the rise in Australia with privacy issues forcing more people to take privacy-protecting measures. After testing 50+ free VPNs, we come to the conclusion that Hotspot Shield and Windscribe are the top choices for Australians.
However, free VPNs come with a lot of limitations and risks, that outweigh their benefits.
That is why we recommend using ExpressVPN as it offers fast connection speeds, unlimited bandwidth, and access to a large server network of 3000+ servers in 94 countries. This way, you can ensure your privacy remains in your hands and bypass geo-restrictions with ease.