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Astrill Review

Callum Tennent
By Callum TennentUpdated
Our Score9.0
User Rating
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Speedy, reliable VPN with advanced privacy features. Easy access to streaming.

What we like
  • Fast, reliable speeds of up to 95Mbps on local connections
  • Quick access to Netflix
  • Servers optimized for P2P and torrent use
  • User-friendly apps. Instant set-up on most major platforms
  • Connect securely to 65 countries

Astrill is a speedy, user-friendly VPN that offers loads of advanced privacy features. It performs very well on local connections, including Europe to US, and is impressively quick connecting to distant server locations too. Access to Netflix and other streaming sites is quick and hassle-free, and a large number of servers are optimized for torrenting and P2P use. Custom apps are available for a broad range of devices and a long list of routers is also supported.

Astrill offers a high level of encryption and more privacy features than most, such as a VPN kill switch and split tunneling. It logs minimal connection metadata in order to maintain a high level of server performance, but none of this is personally identifiable. The Stealth protocol means it also works well to unblock content in high-censorship countries. Customer support is helpful and informative, but live chat was so slow it was basically nonexistent.

Pricing & Deals

Astrill offers a range of pricing plans that offer the same features but get cheaper on a monthly basis the longer you choose.

Astrill Coupon

Astrill Pricing & Deals

Best Value Deal
12 Months
US$8.33/mo
Save 48%
Billed $99.90 every 12 months
6 Months
US$11.65/mo
Save 27%
Billed $69.90 every 6 months
1 Month
US$15.90/mo
Billed $15.90 every month
Get Astrill7-day money-back guarantee

There’s also a seven-day free trial and seven-day refund window.  However, if you use the trial you won’t be eligible for any future refunds. This is a far cry from the ‘no questions asked’ money-back guarantees offered by the likes of ExpressVPN and other top-tier providers.

Astrill also offers optional extras such as Private IPs (from $5 per month) and ‘VIP add-ons’ (from $10 per month) for top-level speeds and lower latency.

You can save yourself money through the “Invite Friend” scheme which entitles you to a free month of access when your friend signs up to any Astrill subscription. Better still, there’s no maximum limit to the number of friends you can refer.

Payment Options

Astrill accepts a broad range of payment methods including most major credit and debit cards, PayPal and Bitcoin. You can also use a few different international options such as Alipay, Wechat Pay and Perfect Money.

Speed & Reliability

Astrill stands out due to fast, reliable performance both local and distant connections. It’s a great choice for P2P users and HD streaming, with same-country speeds close to 100Mbps.

Longer distance performance are also impressive: Japan reached almost 75Mbps; Australia 32Mbps. Latency, however, was average and unlikely to entice famers – an average of 10ms.

This also appeals to torrenters and P2P users, with promising upload speeds (90Mbps in the UK). Performance is reliable with barely any connection drops and little fluctuation, meaning little need to disconnect.

Astrill doesn’t quite measure up to the top VPN providers (NordVPN reaches over 300Mbps on some servers), but it remains a good pick due to consistency across its global network, with barely any connection drops and little fluctuation.

To read about our speed testing methodologies, please read How We Review VPNs.

Features

Server Locations

Globe with a blue flag65Countries
Image of a city landscape110Cities
Image of a pink marker325IP Addresses

Astrill offers a mid-sized server network, covering popular destinations that should please most even if it leaves out more exotic locations.

Unfortunately support was unwilling to disclose the number of individual IP addresses it maintains. We can only presume this means the number is relatively low; this could lead to server congestion and slower speeds.

City-level choices in 15 countries is a pleasant surprise, including in some less well-served locations such as Taiwan. It has one of the best coverages of the US, and you won’t struggle to find high-performance servers in Europe or the Asia Pacific region. The only continent lacking is Africa, represented by South Africa and Egypt only.

Platforms & Devices

Apps

Windows LogoWindows
Mac LogoMac
iOS LogoiOS
Android LogoAndroid
Linux LogoLinux
Router LogoRouter

Astrill offers a range of custom apps for platforms including Microsoft Windows, MacOS, Linux, iOS and Android. You can also buy pre-configured routers from Astrill’s website, allowing you to connect other devices to the VPN without having to install individual apps on each one.

Astrill additionally provides a range of extensive setup guides for devices lacking native apps, such as Amazon Kindle Fire, Windows Phone and Blackberry. There are also instructions on how to manually configure your existing router to support the software.

Astrill, unlike many other top-tier providers, does not provide any type of browser extension. If you’re a heavy browser user seeking a lightweight experience, you might want to look elsewhere.

You can also use Astrill with games consoles and streaming devices. This is where Astrill’s generous limit of five simultaneous connections comes in handy. We were a little disappointed at the lack of custom apps for streaming devices, which is something that rivals, such as IPVanish, already offer.

Browser Extensions

Astrill, unlike many other top-tier providers, does not provide any type of browser extension. If you’re a heavy browser user seeking a lightweight experience, you might want to look elsewhere.

Games Consoles & Streaming Devices

AppleTV LogoAppleTV
Amazon Fire TV LogoAmazon Fire TV
Chromecast LogoChromecast
Nintendo LogoNintendo
PlayStation LogoPlayStation
Roku LogoRoku
Xbox LogoXbox

You can also use Astrill with games consoles and streaming devices. This is where Astrill’s generous limit of five simultaneous connections comes in handy. We were a little disappointed at the lack of custom apps for streaming devices, which is something that rivals, such as IPVanish, already offer.

Streaming & Torrenting

Astrill has reliable access to major streaming services. We had no problems watching Netflix through its US and UK servers. Fast speeds allowed HD quality with very little buffering.

Watching BBC iPlayer is hit-and-miss due to the BBC’s recent crackdowns on VPN traffic. Some days you can access the service through multiple UK servers, other days it’s completely blocked.

Great speeds mean Astrill remains popular with fans of other streaming services including Hulu, HBO and Now TV.

Torrenters and keen Kodi users should also seriously consider Astrill, as servers marked with a yellow star are optimized for use with P2P software and allow port forwarding.

Encryption & Security

Astrill is a fantastic choice for privacy. OpenVPN, the most secure protocol, is easily selected and encryption is AES-256, a cipher considered unbreakable.

The VPN kill switch is an essential feature, preventing true IP addresses being leaked. DNS, IPv6 and WebRTC leak protection are also included. What’s more, Astrill automatically forces all of your traffic through its own DNS servers, meaning there is no chance it will be routed via less secure third-party servers.

We also love the split tunnelling feature, allowing you to protect your browsing without losing access to local network devices, such as printers or smart TVs.

Protocol
  • IKEv2/IPSec
  • L2TP/IPSec
  • OpenVPN (TCP/UDP)
  • PPTP
  • SSTP
Encryption
  • AES-256
Security
  • DNS Leak Blocking
  • First-party DNS
  • IPV6 Leak Blocking
  • Supports TCP Port 443
  • VPN Kill Switch
  • WebRTC Leak Blocking
Advanced features
  • Split Tunneling

Bypassing Censorship

Astrill was once one of the most recommended providers for China, but since the country’s recent VPN crackdown it’s more of a mixed bag. You’re also not eligible for the seven-day free trial if you sign up in China, meaning you cannot test the software before commitment.

Astrill’s stealth protocol provides an additional layer of obfuscation, meaning it currently works to overcome the Great Firewall. There are also servers optimized for connecting out from China, but some people are saying these still don’t work to beat the censors. Astrill does appear to work for the majority, though – before you travel be sure to check out our Best VPNs for China.

Due to Astrill’s proprietary protocols it remains a popular choice for users in other high-censorship countries such as Turkey, Iran and UAE.

Privacy

Logging Policy

Astrill collects a minimal amount of connection medata to maintain a high level of performance. It logs your connection time, IP address, device type and VPN app version for the duration of your VPN session. As soon as you disconnect this information is permanently deleted – an approach we like. This is used to limit the number of devices simultaneously connected.

Additionally Astrill keeps your last 20 connection records, including connection time and duration, country and device type. These are used for customer support purposes and crucially do not contain any personally identifiable information such as your IP address or physical location. If you don’t use the software for 30 days, these logs are wiped.

Jurisdiction

Astrill is incorporated in the Seychelles, outside of any information-sharing agreements and where companies are not required to store or report customer data.

Seeing as Astrill doesn’t collect or store any personally identifiable information, even if a law enforcement agency requested your details, there wouldn’t be any to give.

Ease of Use

Astrill doesn’t have the most attractive set of apps, but they do the job well. Real-time information about your connection is welcome, and servers that work with torrents are helpfully marked with a yellow star for P2P applications.

Additional settings can be found behind the burger menu (three horizontal lines), with leak blocking and a long list of DNS servers to choose from. Split tunneling is easily accessible too. Although OpenWeb is the default protocol rather than OpenVPN, which has to be changed in settings.

The mobile apps are more attractive, but lacking the important privacy features of the desktop. If you want a VPN primarily for a mobile device, we have put together a list of our top pick for both Android and iPhone.

Getting Started

Downloading and installing Astrill is incredibly quick and simple, getting you from purchase to connection in just a matter of minutes. Astrill offers its own Wiki site featuring set-up tutorials for almost every device you could possibly think of, making the process easy no matter what platform you’re using.

The general process is to download the relevant software from the website, then simply follow the prompts given to you by the installation wizard. These are incredibly straightforward but if you get stuck the set-up guides should get you back on track. Once you’ve done this, all that’s left to do is enter your login credentials and you’re ready to start using the VPN.

  • Installing software
  • How to use the app

Customer Support

Astrill’s customer support delivers in most instances, even though the live chat feature was buggy. Support agents often tried to avoid answering questions and sent us back to the website, which was disappointing. You’re better off ignoring live chat and emailing support – we got a detailed response within a few minutes.

The support on the site is extremely useful, offering FAQs and video tutorials explaining some of the more advanced features. There’s also a huge amount of manual setup guides on its Wiki site, which help set it apart from other providers. It’s also refreshing to see a contact phone number, if you’d rather speak to a human being.

The Bottom Line

What we like
  • Fast, reliable performance of up to 95Mbps on local connections
  • Quick, hassle-free access to Netflix
  • Servers optimized for P2P/torrenting
  • User-friendly apps. Instant set-up on a broad range of devices
  • Good-sized global network - connect securely to 65 countries
What we like less
  • Live chat feature doesn’t always work
  • Annual plan is still fairly pricey
  • Mobile apps lack advanced privacy features

Astrill is a great example of a VPN that prioritizes privacy without compromising on performance. It’s not the cheapest option on the current market but offers a premium experience compared to most other providers. Excellent speeds on local connections combined with hassle-free access to Netflix and other streaming sites make it a great choice for streaming fans, and torrenters will love the speedy uploads, but gamers can experience much ping times with other providers.

When it comes to privacy, Astrill is definitely one of the most secure options out there. Minimal connection metadata is collected and discarded after 30 days, and more importantly none of it is personally identifiable so your browsing can’t be traced back to you. Astrill also offers loads of extra privacy features such as a kill switch, split tunneling and its own Stealth protocol that means the software can be used in high-censorship countries.

The apps don’t look great but are very user-friendly and include lots of configurable settings to play with. If you have any issues, it’s best to ignore the live chat on the site and just email the support team for a quick, detailed response. Astrill is nipping at the heels of other top-tier providers and is one of our top picks for a consistent, high-performance VPN.


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