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5 Best VPNs for the Philippines – Securely Browse Without Compromising on Speed

Stephen Cooper

Stephen Cooper

September 20, 2017

Freedom House classifies the internet in the Philippines as “Free.” The government doesn’t place many restrictions on internet access there. There are some concerns about the powers that the government gave itself in the 2012 Cybercrime Prevention Act. However, the country’s Supreme Court struck out the more restrictive clauses of this law in a ruling handed down in 2014.

Quick Links to Our 5 Best VPNs for the Philippines

  1. VyprVPN
  2. ExpressVPN
  3. AirVPN
  4. IPVanish
  5. SwitchVPN

The Cybercrime Prevention Act includes clauses that prohibit piracy. These are concerning to those who download copyrighted material with torrents. Penalties for copyright infringement include fines and jail sentences. However, arrests are rare and the use of the BitTorrent protocol is widespread in the Philippines.

The only reported instances of website bans in the Philippines occurred in 2014, when the dating site Ashley Madison was blocked for a month, and in 2017, when the government banned a number of porn websites, including Pornhub and Xtube. Those blocks are ongoing.

Unlike many neighboring countries, the Philippines doesn’t block chat or internet telephony apps. Social media sites are similarly unmolested. However, the government has issued a number of warnings against posts that are offensive to politicians. The only aspect of internet use that seems to concern the authorities is the distribution of child pornography.

The major problem with the internet in the Philippines is the restricted access that streaming servers and games sites impose on their users. While you don’t have to defeat government blocks in the Philippines, you do have to trick overseas media servers into letting you in. The best method of getting around the regional restrictions on streaming sites is to employ a Virtual Private Network (VPN).

A VPN protects your identity and tricks remote servers into thinking that you’re located within their regions of operation. Bypassing access controls on media sites is technically a form of copyright infringement. Although no one has been convicted for this practice, it is always better to be careful. You never know when the government might suddenly decide to clamp down on these activities. Similarly, downloading with torrents exposes you to the risk of prosecution. This is why the privacy protection that VPNs provide is so important.

You can read more about regional restrictions below. First, let’s take a look at the five best VPNs for the Philippines.

Best VPNs for Philippines: Summary

BestVPN Editor's Choice Award
VyprVPN Homepage
PROS:
  • Three-day free trial
  • Servers in more than 70 countries
  • Proprietary cloaking technology
  • Kill switch
  • Automatic WiFi protection
CONS:
  • Basic plan doesn't include Chameleon

VyprVPN offers very strong privacy protection, which makes this an excellent VPN for torrent downloads. This is also a great VPN for getting into streaming services outside of the Philippines. The company created its own cloaking methodology, called Chameleon. VPNs need to disguise their identities because many regional restriction blockers now also look for the telltale signs of VPN activity and block access to media libraries when they detect a VPN. The toughest proxy detection system to defeat is the one operated by Netflix, and VyprVPN gets past that. If you're interested in getting into foreign streaming services from the Philippines, you need to subscribe to a service that has servers in the countries where your favorite video sites are located. VyprVPN has servers in 70 countries.

Our VyprVPN review shows the service includes a kill switch, which stops the apps on your computer from connecting to the internet if the link to the VPN server isn't in place. You also get automatic WiFi protection to block snoopers when you're out and about. You don't get a money-back period with VyprVPN, but it does offer a three-day free trial.

Try the best VPN for the Philippines now!

Visit VyprVPN »Three-day free trial

2. Best VPN for the Philippines: ExpressVPN

ExpressVPN Homepage
PROS:
  • Special Deal: Save 49% Today!
  • 30-day money-back guarantee
  • Servers in 94 countries
  • Automatic WiFi protection
  • Kill switch
  • Gets into Netflix
CONS:
  • Only three simultaneous connections allowed

ExpressVPN is a little more expensive than VyprVPN, and its service is a little more comprehensive. ExpressVPN has servers in 94 countries and achieves higher transfer speeds than VyprVPN. It is also very good at evading detection and can get into overseas media libraries at Netflix.

You get automatic WiFi protection with ExpressVPN. You can set the VPN to turn on when your system boots up. There's also a kill switch. As long as you don't turn the VPN off, you'll have constant protection from snoopers. This service can improve the speeds on international connections and there is no data throughput limit.

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3. Best VPN for the Philippines: AirVPN

AirVPN Homepage
PROS:
  • Strong encryption
  • Procedures to ensure anonymity
  • App for Widows, Mac OS X, iOS, and Android devices
  • Kill switch
  • Gets around regional restrictions
CONS:
  • Difficult to use

AirVPN is a good VPN for torrenting. Its community pages pass on tips from other users on how to get the most out of the system when using the BitTorrent protocol for downloads. You will also be able to get into foreign streaming services from the Philippines with this VPN. The company's server list isn't huge, with a presence in just 19 countries, so check out the locations you want to connect to and make sure the company has servers where you need them.

You can try out the service for three days for €1 in order to make a proper assessment before you subscribe. You can pay with Bitcoin for greater anonymity. The app has a kill switch and you can set it to turn on as soon as your computer starts up. There are apps for Windows, Mac OS X, iOS, and Android devices.

4. Best VPN for the Philippines: IPVanish

IPVanish Homepage
PROS:
  • Seven-day money-back guarantee
  • Servers in 60 countries
  • Kill switch
  • Automatic start up
  • Auto-reconnect
CONS:
  • Customer support is slow

IPVanish gives you the high speeds necessary for internet telephony apps, online gaming, and streaming from overseas. It has servers in 60 countries and is brilliant at getting around regional restrictions, including those at Netflix.

When reviewing IPVanish we were impressed that you can set the app to launch at system startup. Turn the kill switch on to make sure that the apps on your computer don't reconnect over the internet before the VPN link is established. The kill switch is only available for Windows and Mac OS X devices, although there are also apps (without a kill switch) for iOS and Android gadgets.

5. Best VPN for the Philippines: SwitchVPN

SwitchVPN Homepage
PROS:
  • 30-day money-back guarantee
  • Servers in 25 countries
  • Kill switch
  • High speeds
  • Allowance of five simultaneous connections
CONS:
  • Relatively small server network

SwitchVPN has servers in 25 countries. The closest to the Philippines are in Hong Kong, Singapore, and Malaysia. This VPN uses an IP switcher to help you avoid detection. This system changes the address that your computer is identified by at regular intervals. Other privacy measures include a kill switch.

The VPN is implemented as an app for the Windows, Mac OS X, Android, and iOS operating systems. You can connect five devices to the service simultaneously. The high-speed network is great for downloading, gaming, and video streaming.

VPNs for the Philippines: Considerations

Why Can’t I Get into Netflix US?

When you’re in the Philippines, you can get into Netflix. However, it will be the version of Netflix that was set up for that country. You have to subscribe to the service and sign in whenever you visit the Netflix site. This means that the system can keep track of you and present videos that match your personal details and viewing history.

Netflix is available just about everywhere in the world. Unlike Amazon, Netflix doesn’t restrict you to watching the service in your own country. As such, if you have a Netflix account in the US and then go to the Philippines, you can log in and watch without having to set up a new account. The library tailoring feature of Netflix means that you will still get the system in English. Many of the shows that are available to you at home will still be available in the Philippines – you won’t be forced to watch foreign language shows. However, not all of the library that you can access in the US will be available in the Philippines.

Unlocking Netflix with a VPN in the Philippines

A VPN makes it seem that you’re in another place. When you turn on the VPN, you have to select a server from a list of locations. Once the VPN is running, your location appears to be that of the VPN server, not where you really are. You connect to Netflix with the same address wherever you are: Netflix.com. When the Netflix server receives the request from your browser for the site’s home page, it delivers the page that is available for the location you’re in. If you access the site from the Philippines, you will get the Netflix site for that country, and not the country that you have your subscription in.

Unfortunately, streaming services (including Netflix) are bound by agreements with copyright holders. These specify in which countries a show can be aired. This is why some of the shows that you can watch on Netflix US aren’t available on Netflix Philippines. The company is also bound by the laws of each country in which it operates. That’s why it can’t allow customers in one country to watch the shows that it has made available in another country. The shows available in the US are not all suitable for viewing in the Philippines because of different libel and blasphemy laws. Thus, even if you see a show on Netflix Philippines that’s also available in Netflix US, it may well be edited differently, so won’t be the same.

For more information on watching US Netflix abroad, check out our guide to Unblock Netflix.

Beating VPN Detection

Streaming services have to take all possible steps to prevent cross-border access. This includes detecting and blocking VPN traffic. As such, it’s difficult to find a VPN that can actually get into overseas streaming services. Netflix has some of the most advanced VPN detection software in the world, so very few services work with that site. All of the VPNs on our list have invested in cloaking methodologies that defeat detection procedures and get you access from overseas.

Successful VPNs give you a bonus if you don’t yet have Netflix. The price of Netflix varies by country. If you sign up in the Philippines, you pay less than customers in the US. You can then apply a VPN with a US server to your Netflix connection and watch the US service, even though you have a subscription in the Philippines.

The Best VPN for the Philippines: Conclusion

The censorship implemented by the Philippines government isn’t too severe. The 2017 ban on certain porn sites, however, could be an indicator of more restrictions to come.

All of the VPNs in our list of the five best VPNs for the Philippines are excellent at avoiding detection in very restrictive countries, such as China and Iran. Getting one of these services will future-proof your internet freedoms and keep you prepared for any web access restrictions that the authorities in the Philippines might add to their current list of bans.

Best VPN for the Philippines: Side-by-Side Summary

Image Credit:  ronaldbuday/Shutterstock.com

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