Ray Walsh

Ray Walsh

April 12, 2018

Traveling poses a number of security risks – whether we travel in our own country or overseas. Connecting to WiFi hotspots puts us at risk of hackers. In addition, it is often impossible to access online services from back home while we are abroad.

A VPN for traveling is the ideal solution because it provides security and the ability to pretend to be back home. We have reviewed over 150 VPNs in the last 5 years in search of the best VPN to use overseas.


List of the Best 5 VPNs for Traveling

Take a look at the table below for a list of the best VPNs for traveling. Scroll below for more information about VPNs for Traveling.


VPN for Traveling FAQs

Why use a VPN for Traveling?

To access websites from back home

One of the main reason to use a VPN while traveling is to pretend to be back home. While you are away on business or on vacation it becomes impossible to access many important online services – such as your online banking. In addition, you may not be able to log into local TV streams and services. With a VPN you can pretend to be back home to use those services as per normal.

Staying Secure Online when Traveling

When we travel, we often connect to public WiFi hotspots. Coaches, trains, coffee shops, airports, hotels, – and even restaurants and bars – are all convenient places to grab some free internet on the go.

Unfortunately, connecting to public WiFi can open us up to a number of risks. When we connect to a public WiFi hotspot, we have no way of knowing whether the router has been configured securely.

A lazily configured WiFi hotspot can allow other people who are connected to WiFi  to “sniff” your traffic. This means they could steal your passwords, login credentials – and even your credit card details if you are doing some online shopping.

In addition, sometimes hackers set up fake WiFi hotspots in places where you would expect to find an official one. A fake WiFi hotspot in an Airport could be marked “Free Airport WiFi” to fool you into using it. However, if it really belongs to a local hacker who makes it their business to hack travelers you are going to be in a lot of trouble.

How a VPN can help

A reliable VPN for traveling can help by providing encryption. This encryption stops hackers from being able to see what you are doing online while you are connected to public WiFi. In fact, a VPN even protects your data if you connect to a fake WiFi hotspot belonging to a cybercriminal!

Due to the fact that the VPN securely scrambles all your data, it is impossible for hackers to steal your data, credentials, passwords, and credit card details. Leaving you free to use the internet anywhere – worry-free.

Using a VPN Travel Router

No matter whether you are traveling on your own for business or with friends and family, a travel router can be a massive advantage. These nifty gadgets allow you to connect multiple devices to a public WiFi hotspot without needing to connect all your devices individually. As soon as the mini router is connected to the internet all of your and your families devices automatically connect to that internet connection via the travel router.

This is awesome in of itself. However, it is even better if you get a travel router that has been pre-configured with a VPN! When a VPN is installed on a travel router, all the devices that connect to the internet via that travel router are automatically protected with the VPNs encryption. This means you don’t need to worry about each individual device: or making sure your kids, parents – or anybody else in your party – is opening themselves up to the risk of being hacked (which could ruin everyone’s vacation).

Ensure your travel router  is set up correctly

If you want a travel router with a VPN we strongly recommend visiting the experts at FlashRouters for some advice.  

Whatever you do, please be sure to update the default admin credentials on the travel router. If you don’t update the username and password, the router could get hacked itself!

In addition, you will want to ensure that WPS (an older router feature) is turned off, as it does pose a security risk. Luckily, FlashRouters can help you to correctly setup all of those features.

What are the benefits of using a VPN abroad?

One of the best things about using a VPN while traveling overseas, is that you can access online websites and services from back home. In addition, you can use the internet without fear that the hotel WiFi administrator is snooping on what you are doing. This could be embarrassing at best, and damn right dangerous at worst.

When you travel overseas it becomes impossible to watch a lot of TV channels from back home. This is because of the geo-restriction put in place to stop content being viewed in locations where it is not licensed by copyright holders.

Even if you login to Netflix while you are on vacation: you won’t see your regular Netflix catalog from back home. Worst of all, most Netflix catalogs have a massively reduced amount of titles available – so, without a VPN, you might not be able to watch your favorite shows.

With a VPN you can pretend to be back home, to use all the website services you are accustomed to: no matter where you really are in the world!

Setting up a VPN for travel

When you purchase a VPN for traveling, you will be permitted to install the software on more than one device (usually between three and five). This means that one VPN subscription can be used to protect all of your family’s devices while you are away.

Unless you get a travel router with a VPN, you will need to install the travel VPN on each individual device. The good news is that the VPNs in this guide have software for all devices, so that you can install the VPN on a laptop, a VPN app for Android and VPN for iPhone devices.

Here is a quick guide to help you out:

  1. Select a VPN for traveling from our list and click through to get a subscription. If you only want your VPN while on vacation, then you can opt for a monthly plan. However, VPNs are insanely useful all year round – even when you go back home!
  2. Download the VPN to your laptop, smartphone, or tablet. Remember to get the right VPN for your platform. You can install the VPN on all your family’s devices if you wish (or share it with friends that you are traveling with).
  3. Follow the installation prompts. The VPN will install easily and with no fuss.
  4. Now that it is installed, all you need to do is connect to a server. Remember, your VPN will keep you secure when you are in your own country as well as abroad, so use it every time you are on public WiFi.
  5. Now that you are overseas, remember to connect to a server from back home! That way you can watch TV streams and use internet services from where you come from. No need to watch foreign TV shows anymore!

International Travel Security Checklist

With a VPN sorted, you only need to think about a few other travel security concerns. To help you out I have created this quick list of what I consider the most important things to consider for digital security while traveling:

  1. Passwords. It might seem obvious but making sure your devices are password protected and set to lock-up quickly is much more important when you travel, so please use stronger settings when you are away. If you leave a phone or a tablet at the beach bar or in a taxi, having it lock up almost instantly could stop the device from getting into someone’s hands while still unlocked.
  2. Updates. Remembering to update your devices regularly can ensure you aren’t suffering from vulnerabilities that give cybercriminals an easy way in, so please update often.
  3. Backup regularly. If you take a thousand photos and lose your device on the last day of the holiday, you will never see those photos again. As a general rule, if something is important then make sure it is backed up to the cloud. This applies even if you have never lost a device before – remember that there is always a first time.
  4. Buy a local SIM. If you are traveling for longer periods of time, you may want to buy a local SIM with cheap local data. That way you can use the internet on the go without relying on public WiFi (although the risks of doing so are mitigated by using a VPN).
  5. Don’t brag on social networks about going on holiday until you are back. You never know who is watching – or whether a friend of a friend is a nasty burglar.

Travel VPN Conclusion

When it comes to keeping your devices secure while on holiday, there is a pretty small checklist of things you must do. The best thing to do is to sit down and explain the points in this guide to all of your fellow travelers. No one wants a holiday to be spoiled by hackers, so be sure that the whole groups takes the time to protect their devices accordingly.

A VPN is by far the best form of digital protection you can get for when you travel. So please consider one carefully: the instances of people being hacked on public WiFi are at an all-time high. This is because hackers understand how easy it is to fleece people while they are sunning themselves by the pool, or lounging in an Airport.

All of the VPN services in this guide offer the very best way to protect devices while on the move. There are hundreds of VPNs to choose from, which can make choosing one a bit of a nightmare.

That’s why we have created this VPN for traveling guide to help you pinpoint the very best options – without having to worry about stumbling onto a rip-off service. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to ask in the comments section below.

Ray Walsh
May 14th, 2018

I am a freelance journalist and blogger from England. I am highly interested in politics and in particular the subject of IR. I am an advocate for freedom of speech, equality, and personal privacy. On a more personal level I like to stay active, love snowboarding, swimming and cycling, enjoy seafood, and love to listen to trap music.

2 responses to “5 Best VPN Services for Traveling 2018 – Stay Safe Online While Overseas

  1. Jim says:

    Why do you say IPVanish con is that it is based in the US ?
    You state they have servers all over the world.
    Appreciate any details you can provide.

    1. Douglas Crawford says:

      Hi Jim,

      Edward Snowden revealed the shocking scale of mass governmnet surveillance in the United States. The NSA and its ilk have compromised all major and a huge number of minor technology companies, so it seems inconceivable that US companies which specifically promise their users “anonymity” on the internet will not have also have been compromised. That said, Private Internet Access is a US company, and is one of the very few VPNs to have proven its no logs claims in court. So go figure!

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