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Published: April 2023
Are you a traveller or a digital nomad seeking to keep your online browsing private while travelling the world? If that sounds like you, there’s an easy fix… using a VPN.
In this article, we will discuss what is a VPN, how can it be used from anywhere in the world to ensure your safety while browsing the web from any corner of the world, and the top VPNs for travellers and digital nomads.
VPN stands for Virtual Private Network, and a VPN’s job is to ensure that your IP address is masked when surfing the web.
I highly recommend having a reliable go-to VPN when travelling the world as a digital nomad. If you’re in a coffee shop, co-working space, or anywhere with public Wi-Fi, it’s easy for anyone to access that Wi-Fi network, and therefore access your data.
A VPN will encrypt your communications on any device you’re using that’s connected to the internet and connected to your VPN, such as a phone, laptop, or tablet. It sends data through a secure tunnel to the VPN’s service providers. Your data will then be encrypted and rerouted to the website you are trying to reach.
I lived in China for many years, and China is home to the Great Firewall. I have used many different VPNs while living in China, both free and paid.
In this blog post, I will share my experience using VPNs around the world, ones that I trust, and the ones that I would recommend to you to use as a digital nomad.
Read on to protect your online privacy and browsing data while travelling the world.
My go-to VPN is my absolute favorite and one that I’ve been using for years. NordVPN is an excellent VPN that can connect to almost any country in the world from its servers.
You can use my referral link to get three free months with a VPN purchase.
NordVPN has great customer service should you need assistance, and I have not once had issues connecting to a server, even in China!
It’s a pretty simple one-click setup to access protected internet via NordVPN, however, if you are in a country that actively blocks many websites, such as China, you will need to contact customer support to help you bypass the Great Firewall.
The process to set up your VPN in countries that actively block websites isn’t as simple, however, simply reach out to customer service and they will be able to get you set up and ready to surf the web.
You can also visit my resources page to see all my favourite resources, which of course includes NordVPN.
Another highly recommended VPN I have used is ExpressVPN. I had been using ExpressVPN for many years while living in China, however, after about a year of using ExpressVPN in China, my speeds slowed down and it became difficult to connect.
But not to worry, if you travel to countries that don’t actively block websites, ExpressVPN is an excellent option that you can use as a digital nomad during your travels.
The third VPN I recommend is called Proton VPN.
Proton is a very secure company, one that guarantees encryption in absolutely everything it releases. If you are looking for a secure email account or VPN, be sure to check out Proton.
A perk of using Proton is that not only do they offer VPN services, but if you are looking for encrypted email addresses (and I highly suggest using one if you do online banking or use cryptocurrency online) then you should absolutely ensure you have a Proton account.
I personally don’t use a Google email address for any online money accounts, and I suggest you don’t either.
While I have not personally used Proton VPN myself, I do know that its security and strong encryption allow for anonymous browsing and emailing. If privacy is one of your main concerns, this would be an excellent email and VPN combination to look into.
The next recommended VPN is Hotspot Shield. Hotspot Shield can be purchased online or directly from the App Store.
I have used Hotspot Shield on various occasions while travelling abroad and enjoyed the fast connection speeds and excellent service.
At this point in the article, I would like to note that all of the above-listed VPNs allow you to access TV and video streaming, such as Netflix, from other countries.
I make no promises that they will continue to offer streaming from other countries you do not reside in in the future, however, I have had great experiences using some of the above VPNs for streaming purposes in the past.
Finally, the question on everyone’s mind: what free VPN options are available and reliable?
Before diving in, it is important to note that while some VPNs are free, you are oftentimes paying for the VPN in another way.
These free VPNs often sell your data to third-party companies. This is something you are giving up when using a free VPN, both for the safety and privacy of your web browsing.
Due to this, I would like to point out that using a paid VPN may be best if you are truly seeking online privacy and security.
A free VPN that I have used in the past and recommend for both phones and computers is called Star VPN.
Upon signup, Star VPN will ask for a payment, but you can bypass this step and connect for free. The free plan only allows connection to minimal countries, so if you like Star VPN, I highly recommend purchasing one of their plans.
If you’re looking for other free VPN options, I highly recommend searching the app store (such as the Google Play Store or Apple App Store) on your phone and typing “VPN”.
Many VPNs are free with limited country coverage. Most VPNs offer a free trial so you can see if the VPN service provider is right for you.
If you are interested in purchasing a VPN for travel or for your digital nomad journeys, be sure to check out Nord VPN.
I highly recommend Nord VPN as a secure VPN service, and you can get access to three months for free when using my referral code.
If you have any questions about VPNs and your internet browsing safety, feel free to contact me.
Happy travels, nomad!
If you want to learn more about becoming a digital nomad, creating a business you are passionate about, global taxes, and entrepreneurship, check out the links below:
The Work, Wealth and Travel Podcast
Nomad Neeks Website & Resources
Best Digital Nomad Insurance Options
The Power of Geo-Arbitrage as a Digital Nomad
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