FastestVPN is a zero-logs VPN that’s ideal for total beginners. Local performance is quick but drops off drastically internationally, however solid uploads make it a good choice for torrenters located in Europe and North America. Access to BBC iPlayer is available intermittently, but Netflix is a no-go.
It offers strong encryption and some basic privacy features, but if you’re seeking advanced options such as Tor over VPN you’re out of luck. Customer support is great with friendly agents available 24/7 via live chat, however some of the information on the site is a little outdated.
Pricing & Deals
FastestVPN offers four different pricing plans so there should be a suitable option for you whatever your budget is. These all come with the same features but the longer subscription you sign up to, the less you pay on a monthly basis.
The most expensive option is paying month-by-month, which will set you back $10.00 each time. While this is pretty reasonable, especially for those just looking for a short-term solution, you can save yourself a whopping 89% if you commit to the three-year plan, coming in at a very cheap $1.11 per month. If you commit to five years, you can reduce the price even more at just $0.83 per month, saving you an incredible 92%.
Get 5% off FastestVPN's monthly plan
FastestVPN Pricing & Deals
FastestVPN offers a money-back guarantee in place of a free trial. Unfortunately it’s only valid for seven days, which is incredibly stingy compared to the 30-day offerings from our top-tier providers, however it is completely ‘no questions asked’, with no hidden caps or requirements that have to be met.
FastestVPN offers limited payment options including most major credit and debit cards and PayPal.
There's option to pay using cryptocurrencies but we've been told they hope to offer this in the very near future.
Speed & Reliability
FastestVPN’s performance doesn’t quite live up to its name, as there are several much faster VPNs on the current market, but its speeds on local connections are quick enough for most. Uploads were particularly good, and the fact that P2P activity is permitted on all servers means it’s a great choice for torrenters. Keen gamers might not be impressed with the above-average latency.
FastestVPN’s local downloads are fairly speedy, peaking at 58Mbps in the UK and averaging between 40-55Mbps across the rest of Europe, in countries such as France, Germany, and the Netherlands (we test from London). With speeds like this you’ll be able to stream in buffer-free HD on multiple devices without any problems. Connecting out to the US East Coast from Europe also produced good results, around 34Mbps. Unfortunately this performance wasn’t quite as consistent across longer distances, with Singapore and Australia struggling to reach 5Mbps, which is just enough for general browsing, but not much else.
As we expected, FastestVPN’s latency wasn’t the quickest we’ve seen, however at around 8ms on same-country connections it’ll probably do the job for most. Serious gamers might want to look elsewhere though, especially considering there are providers out there offering ping times of under 1ms, which is ideal for a totally lag-free gaming experience.
We found performance to be fairly reliable, with speeds differing only a little from one test to the next. Unfortunately, connection times are very slow, taking over 20 seconds each time. This won’t affect many, but does become frustrating if switching servers often. Just remember to activate the kill switch before you start browsing to ensure that your IP address isn’t exposed while the VPN connects.
Uploads were much quicker downloads, with multiple European servers (UK, France and Germany) peaking at over 90Mbps. The Netherlands wasn’t far behind at 86Mbps, and even connecting out to the US East Coast you can expect upload speeds of around 34Mbps. Combine this with a privacy-friendly logging policy and the fact that P2P activity is permitted on all servers, and you’ve got an excellent VPN for fast, secure torrenting.
While there are some other providers out there offering higher peak speeds on local connections, FastestVPN will do the job for the majority of users whether they want to stream, torrent or just browse. Connecting locally produces decent speeds, and this extends to transatlantic connections too. Ping might be a little on the high side for competitive gamers, but that’s a minor downside.
To know more about our speed testing methodologies, please read How We Review VPNs.
FastestVPN operates a very small server network with just 23 countries in total to choose from. While this will probably cover the needs of the majority of everyday users, those needing to connect to more unusual locations might want to look into alternative providers.
We’d recommend checking out the server list on FastestVPN’s website to make sure the countries you require are available before signing up. If they aren’t, providers such as HideMyAss! boast up to 190 locations around the world.
As is to be expected from a network this size, FastestVPN maintains very few individual IP addresses with just over 100 in total. This means sharing IP addresses with other users – great for anonymizing yourself, but almost certainly detrimental for speeds.
The US is the only location with city-specific servers which will be useful for users in that country looking to pinpoint a particular state – there are seven different ones to choose from. Those connecting from anywhere else will be automatically connected to the fastest server in their country.
FastestVPN’s server network offers the most choice in Europe and North America, but there are a few options in Asia and one server in Australia. Unfortunatley, there are none in South America or Africa.
Platforms & Devices
FastestVPN offers custom apps for Microsoft Windows, MacOS, Android, and iOS devices. You can manually configure it to work with Linux too, and there are simple instructions provided on its website.
You can also install FastestVPN at router level, meaning you’ll automatically protect all of the internet-connected devices in your home without having to install individual apps on each one. An incredibly long list of routers is supported (again, you can find this on the tutorials section of the website) and the instructions are simple enough that even VPN newbies shouldn’t have a problem.
If you have an Amazon Fire TV you’ll be pleased to know that FastestVPN has a custom app, meaning that you can protect your device hassle-free.
Streaming & Torrenting
FastestVPN wouldn’t be our top choice for hassle-free access to streaming sites as it’s not possible to access Netflix through any of its servers and BBC iPlayer is only available intermittently. FastestVPN doesn’t offer servers optimized for streaming, and there is currently only one server choice in the UK, so if this stops working to access iPlayer you don’t really have any backup options.
Considering the choice of seven city-level servers in the US, we were pretty disappointed to find out that FastestVPN isn’t currently working with Netflix. If streaming Netflix is a must, we’d recommend looking at other providers offering optimized streaming servers, such as SaferVPN.
FastestVPN is good for torrenting if you will be connecting from Europe or North America, as all servers in those regions support P2P activity. However, it’s not permitted on any servers in the Asia-Pacific, namely Australia, Hong Kong, Singapore, South Korea, and India. A strict zero-logs policy and jurisdiction in a privacy-friendly country are added bonuses for those located near P2P-friendly servers, though.
Encryption & Security
FastestVPN offers a decent level of privacy and continues to add more advanced features as time goes on.
The Windows and Android apps default on startup to OpenVPN, our preferred VPN protocol. The other apps use IKEv2, which is still very secure. Encryption is via top cipher AES-256, which is considered to be completely ‘unbreakable’.
FastestVPN now offers a VPN kill switch for Windows and Android devices, preventing your true IP address from being exposed by blocking all web traffic in the case of a VPN connection drop. It also maintains its own zero-log DNS servers and comes with protection against DNS and IPv6 leaks – which our independent leak tests proved to be working.
We like the idea of the ad and malware blocker but it’s quite annoying that there’s no way of manually configuring this within the app, so we actually had no idea if it was working or not. It’s the same story for the NAT Firewall – a great concept but no way of telling how it was benefiting us. Other than these, there are no real ‘advanced’ features such as split tunneling, manual port selection or the option to connect to Tor through the VPN servers, so more experienced users seeking this level of configuration will want to look at other providers such as Astrill.
- OpenVPN (TCP/UDP)
- DNS Leak Blocking
- First-party DNS
- IPV6 Leak Blocking
- VPN Kill Switch
- Ad Blocker
- Split Tunneling
While FastestVPN may work at a push in high-censorship countries such as China, it wouldn’t be at the top of our list of recommendations.
Not only is the server choice in Asia fairly limited, so you’d have to connect over a fairly long distance in order to reach a free-speech country, the apps also lack any additional obfuscation methods. This means that there’s no way you can disguise your VPN connection as normal web traffic, meaning it is more than likely going to be detected by censors and blocked.
The customer support team informed us that to successfully overcome the Great Firewall and access blocked content, you need to use third-party apps, Anyconnect or OpenConnect. While these may work for a short period of time, it’s unlikely that they’ll be very effective when government blocks become more aggressive, so it’s well worth having a back-up option if you do decide to use FastestVPN in China. For a more reliable solution, look for a provider offering some kind of ‘stealth’ protocol, as this will hide the fact you’re using a VPN and mean you have a better chance of beating the censors. To make your decision easier, we’ve put together a list of our top picks for China.
Due to the above, FastestVPN probably isn’t a good choice for those living in or travelling to other countries with high levels of internet censorship, including Turkey, Iran or Saudi Arabia.
FastestVPN is one of the few providers on the current market that collects zero logs – no user information whatsoever. They do not log ‘the websites you visit, the content you download or stream, your traffic destinations or your DNS queries’, meaning there is no way of your ISP or any other third parties knowing what you get up to when you’re connected to the VPN.
They don’t even collect any connection metadata, such as your originating IP address, the IP address of your chosen VPN server or any sort of time or date stamps. This sort of information is usually essential in order to maintain a high level of server performance, but this shouldn’t be too much of an issue considering the current size of FastestVPN’s network.
FastestVPN is based in the Cayman Islands, which has no mandatory data retention laws, meaning they are not legally bound to store any user data or share it with anyone. This means that even if they were to receive a data request from a third party or law enforcement agency, they would not be able to provide anything that could be presented as evidence in a court of law, as they don’t collect any information that would enable them to connect any online activity to a specific user.
Ease of Use
FastestVPN’s desktop app is well-designed, compact and very user-friendly. The main screen includes enough information without looking too cluttered, such as your new location and IP address and some speed stats – from what we saw in our tests, however, these don’t seem to be very accurate. You click the big lightning bolt button in the center to connect, and it helpfully lights up in yellow to let you know once you’re up and running.
There are two ways you can access the server list – either by clicking on your current destination (only when the VPN is disconnected) or via the locations button hidden behind the burger menu in the top left-hand corner. Annoyingly, these are arranged in a totally random order unless you tick a box in settings to order them alphabetically, which isn’t made very obvious. Thankfully there is a search feature to save you scrolling through the entire list, and you can ‘star’ your favorites to make them easier to find each time.
The major downside with FastestVPN’s apps is the lack of configurable settings on offer – the only things you can currently control are the kill switch feature and your chosen VPN protocol. There’s no contextual help here so VPN newbies could be at a loss as to what the difference is between PPTP, IKEv2 and TCP, which obviously isn’t ideal given the vast inequalities in the level of protection each of these protocols offers. We also had trouble using OpenVPN and resorted to manual configuration.
A great app if you want to click and forget, but power users seeking loads of manual settings to fiddle with will want to look elsewhere.
Getting started with FastestVPN should be pretty easy, but we encountered a few teething problems that meant the process took a little longer than usual. We were able to download the software from the website easy enough, and we got through the installation wizard without any problems, however we then received an error message saying the TAP drivers hadn’t been installed, when we knew for a fact they had. After speaking to the support team and reinstalling the software several times, we were forced to manually configure the VPN using OpenVPN’s software, which wasn’t too difficult thanks to the detailed setup guides on the website, however it wasn’t as hassle-free as just opening the app and logging in.
We’ve been assured by FastestVPN that this isn’t usually the case, however it happened a second time when we reinstalled the software. Thankfully when we connected using any protocol other than UDP/TCP we didn’t have any issues. However, we like to run all of our tests over OpenVPN, as this is the most secure protocol, so we unfortunately weren’t able to use the app ‘out-of-the-box’. From what the support team are saying, however, this is unlikely to be an issue for other users, and we will update this review if and when the situation changes.
We were pleasantly surprised by FastestVPN’s customer support, which comes with friendly 24/7 live chat and a ton of useful online resources. These are divided into VPN setup tutorials, FAQs and a there’s even a specific section for using a VPN with Kodi. The FAQs cover the majority of common queries and some basic troubleshooting tips, such as how to boost your speed as well as solutions for frequent disconnections. The setup guides are available for a ridiculously long list of devices, and come with handy screenshots to keep you on the right track. There’s also an up-to-date blog discussing various topics including privacy and security, sports, entertainment and any current deals or updates – we particularly like the section on VPN guides.
Live chat is available 24/7 with helpful, informative agents. Whenever we submitted a question we always received a response in a matter of seconds, and in most cases our problem was resolved in less than a minute. However, there were a few occasions when what the agent told us contradicted what we’d seen on the website, such as when we inquired as to which servers support P2P activity. Thankfully they were quick to reassure us that the current information on the site was outdated and would be changed shortly. Overall a pleasant, hassle-free experience.
The Bottom Line
- Peak download speeds of up to 58Mbps
- Simple, user-friendly apps for popular devices
- Connect securely to 23 countries
- Zero-logs policy and privacy-friendly jurisdiction
- Doesn't work with Netflix
- Apps lack configurable settings
- Very small server network
FastestVPN is a speedy, beginner-friendly VPN that’s ideal for those looking to protect more than just the four main platforms. Performance is good on local connections, with solid uploads and P2P-friendly servers making it a solid choice for torrenters in Europe and North America. Access to BBC iPlayer varies from day to day, but Netflix has been blocked for a long time. The custom apps are great for those looking to click-and-forget but there are better options out there if you like having loads of configurable settings to fiddle with.
On the privacy side of things, FastestVPN is a genuinely zero-logs VPN based in a privacy-friendly jurisdiction, meaning even if law enforcement agencies requested your information there’d be nothing to give them. Some of the custom apps come with a kill switch and and all with built-in DNS leak protection. FastestVPN operates their own DNS servers too.
One minor downside is that we couldn’t get the desktop app to work with the OpenVPN protocol ‘out of the box’ and had to do a small amount of manual config in order to use it. However, thanks to the detailed setup guides on FastestVPN’s website this was only a small inconvenience and didn’t take us too long. Customer support comes with 24/7 live chat and a ton of useful resources and troubleshooting tips. As long as you’re not a competitive gamer or Netflix fan, for just $2.49 per month on the 12-month plan, FastestVPN is definitely worth a try.