Namecheap VPN Review 2020
Namecheap VPN is a US-based VPN service that supports torrenting, unblocks Netflix efficiently, and consistently delivers fast speeds. For its impressive capabilities, the VPN has earned a rating of 4.0/5.0.
Namecheap VPN is a brainchild of a famous web hosting service Namecheap. This US-based VPN service exists in 50 major countries of the world through 1,000+ servers across 75+ locations.
There’s a lot of good in this VPN and hardly anything bad. It works fast, is extremely cheap costing only $1.00/mo for the 1-year plan, and offers a limited but valuable set of features including Internet Kill Switch, DNS Leak Protection, Torrenting support, and unlimited multi-logins alongside 256-bit military-grade encryption.
What’s more, the testing performed in this Namecheap VPN review revealed that the service works exceptionally well with US Netflix, consistently delivers fast speeds, and has a highly responsive live chat customer support always available for the users and prospective customers.
For these reasons, Namecheap VPN roundly deserves a rating of 4.0/5.0.
My Rating Criteria
I rated Namecheap VPN as per my own rating criteria given below:
- Jurisdiction – Where is Namecheap VPN located?
- Security – Is Namecheap VPN safe to use?
- Leaks – Does Namecheap leak IP, DNS & WebRTC?
- Servers – Is Namecheap VPN P2P compatible?
- Speed – How fast is Namecheap VPN?
- Streaming – Does Namecheap VPN unblock US Netflix?
- Compatibility – Which devices can I use Namecheap VPN with?
- Pricing – How much does Namecheap VPN cost?
- Trustworthiness – Trustpilot Ratings, Reddit Reviews & Support
Jurisdiction – Where is Namecheap VPN located?
Namecheap VPN mainly resides from the US hence, the service is unsafe.
Since the US is one of the core members 5 eyes alliance, Namecheap’s jurisdiction is less than ideal. But whether it is something that you should be really concerned about depends on the logging policy which I will discuss shortly.
Security – Is Namecheap VPN safe to use?
Yes, Namecheap VPN is safe to use since the provider offers impressive tunneling protocols like OpenVPN and IKEV2 alongside 256-bit military-grade encryption. Similarly, the service needs to add more tunneling protocols such as PPTP, SSTP, and others in its armory.
In terms of security, these protocols are enough when it comes to protecting your crucial data from the vicious eyes of ISPs, online hackers, and other unwanted personnel.
Additional Security Features
Apart from offering attractive tunneling protocols and encryption features, Namecheap does offers some excellent privacy features. These features are:
Namecheap VPN Kill Switch
The service offers an exclusive Kill Switch feature that helps you keep your identity safe in case your VPN suddenly stops working for any reason.
Namecheap Scramble Option
This feature works just like a stealth protocol that helps you bypass network traffic sensors imposed in numerous oppressive countries. You can enable the Scramble mode option on your OpenVPN connections.
It’s seriously impressive for a VPN that costs so less to offer powerful features like Scramble. If you find yourself in countries with strict anti-VPN policies, you might be able to get your VPN to work with Namecheap’s scramble option enabled.
Does Namecheap VPN keep logs?
No, Namecheap VPN does not keep the logs of its users’ private information as it states on its official website. However, it does mention that “connection” and bandwidth data are stored, so that is a little vague because connection logs could mean anything from IP addresses to DNS queries.
I reached out to Namecheap VPN for clarification and they emphasized that the company “does not collect connection and bandwidth data, including IP addresses, DNS queries, timestamps, emails, and sites visited“.
Now that’s a relief to hear because this essentially means that none of your personally identifiable information is being logged by Namecheap VPN.
Every user has a right to know what kind of information a VPN provider will be storing about them; and providers should make this information clear, prominent, and accessible. We shouldn’t need to dig around to obtain this kind of information.
But I digress. The bottom line is that Namecheap VPN does not store any information that could be used by anyone to learn of your online activities or your identity.
Leaks – Does Namecheap leak IP, DNS & WebRTC?
Namecheap VPN is a leak-free service. The service does not reveal your actual whereabouts be it IP, DNS, or WebRTC information. I tested its leak protection feature through ipleak.net, dnsleaktest.com, and ip8.com. Luckily, I did not encounter any leak problem at all.
Here are the screenshots as proof:
IP Leak Test:
I connected to its Australian servers and the service did not expose my actual IP address online:
DNS Leak Test:
The same went for DNS leak testing that I performed using dnsleaktest.com.
WebRTC Leak Test:
I also tested its WebRTC leak protection feature while using ip8.com a WebRTC leak testing site and received the following result:
Servers – Is Namecheap VPN P2P compatible?
Namecheap VPN offers 1,000+ servers in 50+ countries across 75+ locations. However, the service does not specify if all the servers it offers are physical, and if there are any virtual servers in its network.
You can use the service for all your torrenting needs. Although the provider doesn’t market itself for its p2p capabilities, I found no problems accessing and downloading torrent websites with Namecheap VPN.
Does Namecheap VPN work in China?
Namecheap VPN MIGHT actually work in China. Although we couldn’t test the VPN within China, the fact that it uses Scramble/Obfuscation makes it a likely candidate for functionality within the mainland.
Therefore, Namecheap VPN is worth a try if you’re struggling with censorship and other restrictions in China.
Speed – How fast is Namecheap VPN?
Namecheap VPN is exceptionally fast. I wasn’t expecting this VPN to work fast at all, but I was amazed at how it actually performs.
To measure the speed, I used a 30 Mbps base internet connection and implemented the speedtest.net tool. I tested the service on 3 distinct server locations US, UK, and Canada.
Here are the results:
The US server reached 21.95 Mbps in download and 23.47 in upload speed on my 30 Mbps internet connection. This is seriously impressive!
Next, I tested its UK server to see if it can maintain the same level of performance, and I wasn’t disappointed. It recorded 21.68 Mbps this time, although the ping was pretty high:
Finally, the Canadian continued the same trend of fast speeds, delivering 21.86 Mbps in download.
The consistency is absolutely remarkable. Even some of the most highly rated VPNs often fail to deliver fast speeds across the board. Namecheap VPN is a rare brand in this respect.
Streaming – Does Namecheap VPN unblock US Netflix?
Namecheap VPN works perfectly for US Netflix. To test its performance with Netflix, I connected to the US Dallas server, which immediately gave me access to Netflix’s exclusive US content library.
I’m watching Ex Machina here in HD quality with Namecheap VPN working in the background. It buffered instantly and the whole process was outstandingly smooth:
Other Streaming Services
Unfortunately, I did not have the same luck with other streaming services. For instance, it gave me an error when trying to watch BBC iPlayer with its UK servers (none of which worked for this purpose).
I’m not sure if it works with Amazon Prime Video and Hulu as I was unable to test it for these platforms.
Compatibility – Which devices can I use Namecheap VPN with?
Namecheap is compatible with all the leading platforms including Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, and iOS. In addition, the service also supports Routers as well. Apart from this, the provider offers an impressive unlimited multi-logins feature to its users, so you can connect as many devices as you want with a single account.
You can configure Namecheap VPN on your routers via OpenVPN as long as the firmware of the router supports OpenVPN files.
Namecheap VPN for Windows
If we talk about its Windows app, the app is quite simple and easy to use. It is neatly designed, with a nice and clean visual interface.
It is super easy to use as there are very few options you can play around with. The main screen has a big “Connect” button to connect a server location. You can either let the app automatically connect you to the “best” server location, or you can manually choose a location of your choice by scrolling through the list or by using the search tab to type in the location you are looking for.
The full server location menu shows a list of available countries with drop-downs that reveal available cities for each. Next to every server location, you can see the ping and current load on the server. This makes it really convenient to choose the best and fastest server for at any given time.
In settings, you can change the VPN protocols between IKEv2 and OpenVPN UPD and OpenVPN TCP. In addition, you enable or disable other features such as the kill switch, auto-connect, and scramble feature.
Overall, it is a pleasure to use the Namecheap VPN Windows app with its sleek and simple look and excellent performance. It literally never takes more than 5 seconds to connect to any VPN server of your choice. Nor did I face any random disconnections while connected to servers of my choice.
Namecheap VPN for Mac
The same goes for the Mac platform too as you can use the app without facing any issue whatsoever. The app looks and behaves much the same way as its Windows counterpart with the same appealing design that is easy on the eyes and a breeze to use.
The server selection screen is the same with a detailed overview of locations, their pings, and load. The default protocol on the Mac app is IKEv2, which you can change to OpenVPN if you prefer to.
In terms of connectivity, the Mac app is super-efficient and establishes connections to the selected VPN location with outstanding rapidity.
In short, you will enjoy using this app.
Namecheap VPN for Linux
Namecheap VPN doesn’t have a dedicated app for Linux, but it does support the OS through manual configuration using OpenVPN.
Namecheap VPN for Android
The Android app works quite well as it offers an exclusive world map feature that you can easily zoom whenever you want. Furthermore, you can use the standard scrolling list that allows you to select your desired locations. When you login to the Android app, you can enable or disable the reconnect option through a settings panel. As for ratings, Namecheap VPN has a 3.1-star rating on Google Play Store.
Namecheap VPN for iOS
The dedicated app is compatible with the latest versions of iOS. Hence, you can protect your crucial whereabouts while on the go. Like other apps of Namecheap, its iOS app provides a simple user interface and works like a charm, to say the least. However, you will not be able to find much-needed features like split tunneling on its iOS app.
You can download and install the iOS app by visiting the official site that will redirect you to the App Store directly. As for ratings, Namecheap VPN has a 3.0-star rating on iTunes Store.
Pricing – How much does Namecheap VPN cost?
Namecheap VPN lives up to its name to the full extent. It is EXTREMELY cheap for its users. Here is the list of these pricing plans that includes:
- 1-month – $0.00/mo (first month), $5.88 (after first month)
- 1-year – $1.00/mo (Save 83%)
- 3-year – $1.88/mo (Save 68%)
The long-term plans i.e. 1-year and 3-year are both ridiculously affordable with the former costing you $12.00 for the first whole year and $67.68 for the 3-years.
There is a catch, however. The 1-year plan renews at $34.56, so if want to renew your subscription after the first year, it will cost you more, but it’s still significantly cheaper than the competition out there.
The monthly plan is free for the first month. If you wish to continue the monthly subscription subsequently, it will cost $5.88/mo. This is great if you want to check the VPN out on trial basis for the first month, but it is the longer-term plans that offer value for money if you do wish to continue using the VPN.
You can get your preferred plan by paying through credit card payments, Bitcoin, PayPal, and more.
The service also offers a generous 30 days money-back guarantee you can use to get your refund within a month after the subscription.
All in all, Namecheap VPN has an extremely appealing pricing structure.
Namecheap VPN Free Trial
You can enjoy an amazing free trial feature when you subscribe to Namecheap VPN through Google Play Store or iTunes provided that you have made a $0.00 purchase.
Trustworthiness – Trustpilot Ratings, Reddit Reviews & Support
Namecheap VPN has to improve its goodwill on Trustpilot. It has been rated poor with 2.5/5.0 ratings by customers. However, most of these reviews are concerning the Namecheap hosting service rather than its VPN service, these are not very instructive if you want to gauge customer perception about Namecheap VPN proper:
Namecheap VPN Review Reddit
Is Namecheap the right choice for users who want to protect their footprints online? Although some users have expressed dissatisfaction with the customer service, there are some positive comments on Reddit that are pretty happy with the service:
Many users also hold Namecheap VPN as a company in high esteem.
On support front, the provider has ticked all the required boxes in the right way. Here is the list of different options you can use:
- Live chat
When you want to make your general queries that relate to billing, installation, and other attributes of the VPN, you can use their impressive live chat feature.
I got a response in 1 minute when I contacted their live chat support, though the customer support representative probably misunderstood my question and wasn’t a big help (I admit, the question was poorly worded and his response appropriate in the context).
The good thing is that they are responsive and easily reachable which is quite impressive for a VPN that is so cheap. Many of the cheaper providers skimp on customer service, but not Namecheap VPN!
The knowledgebase also consists of helpful guides and installation material to assist users configuring and setting up the VPN on their respective devices.
Alternatives to Namecheap VPN
Here are the other VPN services you can try out if you do not want to continue using the service for any reason:
Do I Recommend Namecheap VPN?
Yes, I do recommend Namecheap VPN. If you’ve been reading this Namecheap VPN up til now, you’ve probably seen that the VPN is extremely cheap, unblocks US Netflix efficiently, boasts outstanding speeds, has an impressive network of 1,000+ servers, unlimited simultaneous connection, and good customer support.
However, its logging policy – though not bad by any means – is a little bit vaguely written and doesn’t specify which user-related data they store and which data they don’t store. Its US-based jurisdiction doesn’t add anything to its favor either.
Furthermore, the provider should add command-line based apps for Linux. Currently, it only supports Linux through manual OpenVPN configuration, which is generally a cumbersome process.
Overall, Namecheap VPN is a very capable VPN that is not only good for online security and privacy but possesses remarkable unblocking prowess under its belt. For its qualities, Namecheap VPN has earned a rating of 4.0/5.0.
To know about other VPN providers, you may explore our VPN reviews 2020 guide.