Avast SecureLine VPN (also known as Avast VPN) provides reliable speeds and a decent level of protection, but it’s a little overpriced compared to other similar VPN services .
Speeds are good enough on local and international connections for HD streaming and downloads, but high latency is no good for gamers.
Avast VPN works with Netflix and BBC iPlayer through dedicated streaming servers. Sleek, modern apps are available for Windows, macOS, iOS and Android however there are no manual workarounds for other devices, including routers.
Avast VPN provides a high level of encryption (AES-256) and protection against DNS and IPv6 leaks. We were very disappointed with the lack of a VPN kill switch, though (it’s only available on macOS), and the rather intrusive logging policy makes Avast VPN not a good choice for privacy.
The VPN apps won’t work in China unfortunately, so we cannot recommend Avast VPN for high-censorship countries.
Customer support is limited to paying customers and you can choose between a phone call or submitting an online form (be prepared to wait at least 24 hours for a response).
Pricing & Deals
Avast VPN has many different pricing plans. The most expensive price plan is the multi-platform one, that covers up to five simultaneous connections across all platforms.
A single month is the priciest plan at $8.99, but this drops to $5.33 per month if you opt for a 12-month subscription. You can also sign up for two years, at $4.99 a month or three years at $4.88.
You can also buy the VPN exclusively for your PC or Mac – this costs $59.99 every year for one device, or $99.99 for up to 10 devices.
If you’re just going to protect an Android or an iOS device, then the VPN subscription will cost you either $2.99 per month, or $19.99 per year.
Avast SecureLine Coupon
Get 46% off Avast SecureLine's 3-year plan
Avast SecureLine Pricing & Deals
Avast VPN runs a seven-day free trial and a 30-day money-back guarantee. The free trial is one of the best we’ve seen – no personal details are needed for you to use the service, and there are no restrictions, such as data caps or limited access to servers.
We used the free trial ourselves before upgrading to the paid version, and found little to no difference in performance whatsoever. We suggest you take up Avast VPN’s free trial before committing to a paid subscription.
The 30-day money-back guarantee unfortunately is subject to a number of terms and conditions. You won’t be eligible for a refund if you exceed 10GB of bandwidth usage, or if you connect to the VPN more than 100 times. This is a far cry from the “no questions asked” guarantees offered by top VPN providers like NordVPN.
Avast VPN provides a limited range of payment methods compared to most other VPN providers. You can choose from credit/debit card or PayPal, but no option to pay using cryptocurrency or via any international methods such as AliPay.
Speed & Reliability
Avast’s server performance pleasantly surprised us. Our tests showed that connecting to pretty much any server in the US or Europe will give you speeds more than quick enough for HD streaming and buffer-free downloads, and performance on more distant servers (such as Australia) was also incredibly promising. Speedy uploads mean it’s a solid choice for torrenters, however latency was pretty high, meaning gamers might want to look elsewhere. Overall a great all-round performer.
Downloads on local connections are nowhere near those offered by top-tier providers, but they’re more than quick enough for buffer-free streaming and multiple file downloads without breaking a sweat. The Netherlands and the UK both produced speeds of almost 80Mbps, with France not far behind at just under 70Mbps. You can also expect brilliant performance of over 50Mbps connecting out from Europe to the USA, more than ample for streaming across multiple devices. We were equally as impressed with performance in Australia, coming in at a ridiculously quick 49Mbps, especially considering we test from London.
The one thing that really lets Avast down is latency, which was upwards of 17ms even on same-country connections. This means it’s probably a no-go for gamers, especially considering there are providers out there with ping times of less than 1ms.
The desktop app connects fairly quickly each time, in around 10 seconds or less, which we’ve found to be about average in our tests. Once you’re up and running, performance is incredibly reliable with practically no connection drop-outs, provided you have a stable internet connection of course.
Uploads aren’t quite as speedy as downloads but are more than adequate enough for everyday users. Connecting locally you can expect speeds of 40Mbps or more, but these drop off over international connections, as is to be expected. P2P activity is supported on a handful of servers but these are mainly located in Europe and the US, so keen torrenters on other continents might want to take this into account.
Avast offers a good solid level of server performance that will be more than quick enough for most. Speeds on both local and international connections will allow for buffer-free streaming across multiple devices, and zippy local uploads mean it’s a good shout for P2P users in Europe and the US. The only major downside is the laggy latency, but unless you’re a hardcore online gamer this is unlikely to bother you.
To find out about our speed testing methodologies, please read How We Review VPNs.
Avast Secureline’s server network is small, with just 34 countries and 54 cities available. Most popular countries are covered, however if you want a VPN with worldwide coverage then we suggest using HideMyAss!, which serves over 190 countries and is owned by Avast.
There’s no information about the number of individual IP addresses Avast maintains. All servers offer a single shared IP address which can lead to server congestion and slower speeds as Avast VPN’s customer base increases.
There’s a choice of 16 cities in the US, covering both east and west coast cities but with a few choices in-between. A few other countries also offer city-level servers, including Canada, Germany, Russia, Spain and the UK.
Europe has the best coverage with 19 countries (out of 34), but the Asia-Pacific region is also served rather well with servers in Australia, Japan, Malaysia, and Hong Kong.
Africa and South America are not covered well at all, with only one server in South Africa and one in Brazil.
Platforms & Devices
Avast VPN provides custom VPN apps for Microsoft Windows, macOS, iOS and Android devices. Unfortunately there are no manual workarounds for other platforms such as Linux, nor are you able to configure your router to work with the VPN software.
You will therefore not be able to configure Avast VPN at router level, and automatically secure all internet-connected home devices, but you can use the VPN on up to five devices simultaneously (on the multi-platform pricing plan).
Avast VPN unfortunately doesn’t come with any VPN extensions. Most top-tier VPN providers provide at least a proxy extension for Chrome or Firefox, with some VPN services like ExpressVPN providing full-featured VPN extensions.
If you’re looking to use a VPN addon with your web browser, then take a look at the best VPN extensions currently available.
Games Consoles & Streaming Devices
You won’t be able to use Avast VPN with any of your games consoles and streaming devices, because you can’t install Avast Secureline on your router and it doesn’t come with other manual configurations.
You could connect your console or streaming device to one your other devices that is already running the VPN, such as your laptop or smartphone, however we don’t recommend doing this with Avast. We suggest using a VPN service that allows for manual configurations.
Streaming & Torrenting
Avast VPN is a good VPN for streaming Netflix, BBC iPlayer or Hulu.
The optimized ‘Gotham City’ server has worked with Netflix in all of our recent tests, with good connection speeds, meaning you can take advantage of the HD option and watch all your favorite shows buffer-free.
The UK streaming server ‘Wonderland’ unblocks BBC iPlayer, and once more we experienced great video quality.
Avast supports torrenting on 8 of its 54 servers: Czech Republic, France, Germany, the Netherlands, UK and USA. This is a relatively small number of servers but that’s because P2P activity is limited to Avast’s data centers for more secure connections. Avast VPN’s logging policy is not strong enough, though, and we cannot recommend Avast VPN to torrenters.
Encryption & Security
Avast VPN is secure enough for beginners, but not for those seeking the highest level of privacy.
The Windows and Android apps operate exclusively on OpenVPN, which is one of the most secure VPN protocols, and there’s no way you can connect to a VPN server using another (less secure) protocol.
MacOS and iOS apps use IPsec, which still offers a good level of security. Encryption is via AES-256, a top cipher used by the US federal government.
However, Avast VPN doesn’t provide any advanced privacy features at all. There is no VPN kill switch on the Windows app – it’s available only on macOS – meaning that if your VPN connection drops for any reason, your true IP address will be exposed.
Avast VPN will do just fine if you’re looking to protect yourself on public WiFi, but more privacy-focused users will want to look into VPN services that provide more advanced privacy settings, such as Astrill.
- OpenVPN (TCP/UDP)
- DNS Leak Blocking
- IPV6 Leak Blocking
Avast SecureLine won’t work in China, or any other high-censorship country, as it lacks necessary obfuscation tools to hide its use of the popular OpenVPN protocol, which is easily
OpenVPN is so widely used by VPN providers, it’s almost impossible to outsmart the censors using this protocol. You need to look for a VPN that offers a stealth protocol to access blocked websites such as Gmail and WhatsApp. We recommend using ExpressVPN or VyprVPN.
Avast VPN collects detailed connection metadata for “technical purposes and to…prevent and detect fraud…or other illicit activity.”
The information they log is as follows:
- Your username
- A timestamp when you connect and disconnect to the VPN
- Total amount of data transmitted during your session
- Your originating IP address and the IP address of your chosen VPN server
This data is stored for 30 days on Avast’s secure servers and then deleted. This is one of the more intrusive logging policies we’ve seen, and should put off users seeking the highest levels of privacy who should instead see our best no logs VPN services.
Avast’s headquarters are in Prague, Czech Republic, making it subject to intrusive EU data laws and intelligence-sharing agreements with other countries such as the US.
Ease of Use
Avast VPN’s custom apps are modern and user-friendly, and they’ll appeal to VPN newbies.
The main screen is clean and simple, displaying a big on/off toggle along with your chosen server location, new IP address and how long you’ve been connected for. There’s also useful information about how a VPN works and what your IP address represents.
The server list is well laid out, with the option to display all available countries or filter by continent. It’s easy to see which countries have city-level server choice, and which servers are optimized for torrenting or streaming. If you don’t need to connect to a specific country, you can just click/tap on ‘Optimal Location’ and the VPN app will connect you to the best nearest server.
The major downside of Avast VPN’s apps is the total lack of configurable settings. There’s no option to manually select a VPN protocol, and there is no kill switch. The only thing you can enable/disable is auto-protection when connecting to an unsecured WiFi network.
Getting started with Avast VPN is pretty simple so you shouldn’t struggle too much, even if you’ve never set up a VPN before.
Just download the VPN app for your device and follow the prompts in the installation wizard. These are straightforward to follow, but should you need help, there are detailed setup guides on the support section of the website with helpful screenshots.
Once the VPN installation is complete, you’ll be prompted to enter your activation code – you will have received this in your welcome email when you signed up to Avast VPN. Enter your activation code to activate your subscription and start using Avast VPN.
Avast’s customer support really frustrated us at times and simply doesn’t measure up to the top-class service offered by the best VPN providers.
The resources on the website are limited to setup guides and basic FAQs and are incredibly difficult to navigate, but there is a search feature at least. The FAQs will only cover basic troubleshooting issues, but for anything beyond that you’ll need to contact the support team and be prepared to be patient.
There is no live chat feature, and the fact that there’s no contact email address is also disappointing. Avast encourages customers to call them for support over the phone, but this seems a bit unnecessary if you just have a quick query.
The other contact option is via an online form and wait for a reply via email, but response times were unacceptably slow.
The Bottom Line
- Reliable speeds: almost 80Mbps (local connections)
- Dedicated servers for Netflix & iPlayer
- Servers optimized for P2P/torrenting
- Connect securely to 34 countries
- User-friendly apps for popular platforms
- Bad customer support
- Limited server network
- Lacks any configurable settings
- Based under EU jurisdiction
Avast SecureLine VPN is a decent beginner’s VPN that provides reliable speeds on both local and international connections.
Avast VPN does unblock Netflix and BBC iPlayer, and speeds are more than quick enough for HD streaming and buffer-free downloads.
We were disappointed by the lack of advanced features such as a VPN kill switch (this is only available on Mac), and Avast VPN collects rather detailed connection logs which are stored for at least 30 days, which is not good for users’ privacy.
The custom apps are sleek and user-friendly (we do like the way the server list is laid out) but too basic, with no configurable settings.
Customer support is bad, with no live chat and extremely slow email responses. The resources on Avast’s website will only help with the most basic issues.
Overall, Avast VPN is an ok VPN service but there are better and cheaper options out there.