Disclosure: We review VPNs independently, however we may earn commissions if you buy a VPN via links on our site.

VPN.AC Review

 Rated 5 out of 5 
3 user reviews
Header image of the VPN.ac desktop app
Headshot of Top10VPN.com Site Editor Callum Tennent

Callum Tennent oversees how we test and review VPN services. He's a member of the IAPP, and his VPN advice has featured in Forbes and the Internet Society.

Ask Callum About VPN.AC

Our Verdict

8.48.4/10
How is this calculated?

Our overall rating is reached by combining several subcategories. The subcategories are weighted as follows:

  • Logging & Jurisdiction: 30%
  • Speed & Reliability: 25%
  • Security & Features: 20%
  • Streaming: 10%
  • Torrenting: 5%
  • Ease of Use: 5%
  • Support: 5%

See our full methodology in how we review VPNs.

VPN.AC is fast, private, and it even works in China. It has a good privacy policy and a secure server network that works well for torrenting and unblocking international streaming services. VPN.AC isn't perfect, but it's a safe and affordable VPN with some helpful advanced features.

Ranked #13 out of 56 VPNs

VPN.AC Category Ratings

  • 7.47.4/10
  • 8.28.2/10
  • 99.0/10
  • 9.29.2/10
  • 7.27.2/10
  • 9.89.8/10
  • 8.58.5/10
  • 9.19.1/10
  • 7.77.7/10
  • 77.0/10

VPN.AC Pros & Cons

  • Excellent privacy & security features
  • Unblocks China with obfuscation tools
  • Quality, secure servers
  • Sensible privacy policy
  • Fast speeds
  • Good for streaming & torrenting

  • Only 21 countries on server list
  • Support needs improvement
  • Torrenting on non-optimized servers is slow

Why Trust Our Review?

We’ve spent thousands of hours testing and reviewing 56 VPN services using our impartial review process to recommend you the best VPN software.

Here are some of our key VPN testing statistics:

Total Hours of Testing30,000+
Weekly Speed Tests3,000+
VPN Services Reviewed56
Streaming Platforms Tested Daily12
IP & DNS Leak Tests Performed9,500+
How Much We've Spent On Testing$25,000+

VPN.AC is a very competitive VPN in almost every respect, deserving of your consideration even when up against some of the biggest names in the industry.

It’s cheaper than a good number of the VPNs we rate higher than it, and it’s faster than a lot of them, too – its 90Mbps download speeds on local connections are extremely impressive.

We trust its logging policy, too, so you should feel safe letting VPN.AC handle your sensitive data. While it may initially log more data than we’d ever recommend, it deletes it immediately after a session ends. Its Romanian jurisdiction is also largely sound.

An excellent choice for both streaming and torrenting, plus the ability to beat censorship in countries like China, means that VPN.AC is likely to meet your needs no matter what you want a VPN for.

Our only real criticisms are reserved for its refund policy and customer support. The refund policy needs clarification on its specifics, and we really want to see VPN.AC implement live chat.

We go into all of this in much greater detail in the review below – read on to first of all see the most important data we recorded while testing VPN.AC.

VPN.AC Key Data

Data CapUnlimited
Speed84Mbps
Logging PolicyNo Logs
Data LeaksNo
JurisdictionRomania
Servers117
IP Addresses117+
Countries21
US NetflixYes
TorrentingUnlimited
Simultaneous Connections6
Works In ChinaYes
SupportEmail support via online ticket
Cheapest Price$3.75 over 24 months
Money-Back Guarantee7-day Money-Back Guarantee
Official WebsiteVpn.ac

Privacy & Logging Policy

Private service based in privacy-friendly Romania

99.0/10
How is this calculated?

We dissect the logging and privacy policies of every VPN. A VPN should never log:

  • Your real IP address
  • Connection timestamps
  • DNS requests

A base of operations outside of 14-Eyes or EU jurisdiction is preferable.

VPN.AC logs your original public IP address, session timestamps, and your total bandwidth transferred. Vitally, though, this information is only stored for the duration of your session. This makes the logging policy much, much more acceptable. Its Romanian jurisdiction is also safe.

Ranked #24 out of 56 VPNs for Privacy & Logging Policy

VPN.AC is incorporated in Romania, owned by a company called Netsec Interactive Solutions. It even lists its full address on its website and LinkedIn profile page: 76 Calea Dumbravii Street, 550399, Sibiu, Romania.

Romania is a solid choice of base for a VPN. While it’s located within the EU, data retention is considered illegal by Romanian courts.

When the Romanian government introduced the EU’s 2006 Data Retention Directive, in 2009 the Constitutional Court of Romania (CCR) stated these laws were an unconstitutional violation of Romanian citizens’ rights to privacy.

As a result, Romania is the only EU country to have successfully thrown out the EU’s data retention laws.

Logging Policy

Here is everything that VPN.AC logs of its users:

  • Originating IP address
  • Start and end time of VPN connections
  • Amount of data transferred

However, these logs are deleted “once a session is terminated.” That’s what transforms VPN.AC’s privacy policy from a horrible one into one which is actually very safe.

In order for any of this data to be obtained by hackers, they would have to be physically stood in the same room or connected to the same network as the server you’re connected to while you’re using the service. This is extremely unlikely to ever happen.

Speed & Reliability

Extremely fast, especially on closer connections

9.29.2/10
How is this calculated?

Speed ratings are calculated using upload speeds, download speeds, and ping (latency).

We test average speeds regularly using a dedicated 100Mbps connection in London, UK. Local download speed is considered the most important factor.

VPN.AC’s most recent speed tests have produced significant improvements - we now consider it to be an elite VPN for download speed, at least on 100Mbps connections or slower. It’s excellent when connected to a server near you or anywhere within 4,000 miles. It only slowed down once we connected to the Asia-Pacific region, where upload speeds were particularly affected.

Ranked #13 out of 56 VPNs for Speed & Reliability

VPN.AC has really surprised us with these most recent speed tests, conducted in July 2022. Its download speeds in particular shot up to a rate comparable with almost any VPN on the market.

This is particularly impressive given its lack of WireGuard protocol – all of these tests were conducted using the OpenVPN protocol with AES-256 encryption.

Here are all the figures reported from the testing:

Local Speed Test results before using VPN.AC:

  • Download Speed: 100Mbps
  • Upload Speed: 100Mbps
  • Ping: 5ms

Local Speed Test results with VPN.AC:

  • Download Speed: 90Mbps
  • Upload Speed: 95Mbps
  • Ping: 6ms

Download speed loss when VPN.AC is running: 10%

We consider a download speed drop of 10% or less while connected to a nearby server to be negligible – which VPN.AC manages. You should be able to turn it on and forget about it, browsing the internet, downloading files, and streaming just like normal.

Performing a speed test while connected to VPN.AC on Windows

VPN.AC’s local speeds averaged out well. We didn’t record much difference between the various OpenVPN protocols, either.

International Speed Test Results

VPN.AC performs well over long distances, even if there is still a (understandable) drop-off when connecting to Japan and Australia:

Here are VPN.AC’s latest long-distance speed test results:

  • US (East Coast):
    • Download: 84Mbps (16% slower)
    • Upload: 33Mbps (67% slower)
  • Germany:
    • Download: 91Mbps (9% slower)
    • Upload: 94Mbps (6% slower)
  • Japan:
    • Download: 60Mbps (40% slower)
    • Upload: 35Mbps (65% slower)
  • Australia:
    • Download: 22Mbps (78% slower)
    • Upload: 13Mbps (87% slower)

One abnormality to take note of is that, despite excellent download speeds when we connected to a US server, upload speeds took a large hit. This might not hinder you too much, but sharing files or using video chat will be affected.

Ping Times Might Affect Gaming

While its speeds are excellent, we did record some slow ping times from VPN.AC – mostly on international connections.

Here’s what they look like:

  • Without VPN: 5 ms
  • UK: 6 ms
  • Germany: 28 ms
  • US: 123 ms
  • Japan: 254 ms
  • Australia: 289 ms

Security & Extra Features

Secure encryption & good extra features, but no WireGuard

8.58.5/10
How is this calculated?

Top-rated VPNs offer OpenVPN or WireGuard protocols, AES-256 encryption, and a functional kill switch. We also consider additional security features and the global spread of VPN servers.

VPN.AC’s main weakness here is that it doesn’t offer WireGuard on any platform. However, OpenVPN is super-secure and manages excellent speeds, so it’s not too much of an issue. It’s a shame that advanced features like OpenVPN obfuscation, split tunneling, and DNS filtering aren’t available on all platforms.

Ranked #19 out of 56 VPNs for Security & Extra Features

ProtocolsAvailable in VPN.AC
IKEv2/IPSecYes
L2TP/IPSecYes
OpenVPN (TCP/UDP)Yes
ProprietaryNo
PPTPYes
SoftEtherNo
SSL VPNNo
SSTPNo
TLS VPNNo
WireGuardNo
EncryptionAvailable in VPN.AC
AES-128Yes
AES-192No
AES-256Yes
BlowfishNo
ChaCha20No
SecurityAvailable in VPN.AC
DNS Leak BlockingYes
First-party DNSYes
IPv6 Leak BlockingYes
Supports TCP Port 443No
VPN Kill SwitchYes
WebRTC Leak BlockingYes
Advanced FeaturesAvailable in VPN.AC
Ad BlockerYes
Dedicated IPNo
Double VPNYes
Smart DNSNo
SOCKSNo
Split TunnelingNo
Tor over VPN ServerNo
Tracker BlockerYes

WireGuard may be well on its way to becoming the dominant protocol in the VPN industry, but there’s still nothing wrong with OpenVPN.

Trustworthy, fast, and safe, OpenVPN is VPN.AC’s protocol of choice. On most platforms it actually offers four variants: ECC, 256-bit, 128-bit, and XOR. Here’s how they differ:

OpenVPN ECC

Uses 128-bit AES encryption combined with elliptic-curve cryptography.

OpenVPN 128-bit

Uses standard 128-bit AES encryption.

OpenVPN 256-bit

Uses standard 256-bit AES encryption.

OpenVPN XOR

Uses 128-bit AES encryption combined with XOR obfuscation.

All of these can be used in either TCP or UDP variants: UDP is quicker but TCP is more reliable.

This is an unusual approach to protocols that we’ve not seen from any other VPN services. We recommend OpenVPN ECC or 256-bit for everyday usage and OpenVPN XOR when you need to bypass strict censorship (for example if you’re in China).

On macOS and Windows there’s also the highly-outdated L2TP, which we recommend you never use. iOS has no choice of protocol – it uses IKEv2 by default, which performs very similarly to OpenVPN for speed and security. You can also choose IKEv2 on Windows if you want.

Wireshark encryption testing on macOS with VPN.AC

We packet sniffed our own connection using Wireshark while connected to VPN.AC. We observed everything fully encrypted.

VPN.AC successfully encrypted all of our traffic while connected. We tested this using Wireshark, a packet-sniffing tool, the results of which you can see above.

Kill Switch Has Issues on macOS

The kill switch is the most important part of any VPN’s feature set – without it your true IP becomes exposed if the VPN fails at any point, and your traffic is left unencrypted.

The good news is that VPN.AC passed our kill switch test with flying colors on Windows, Android, and iOS.

The bad news is that we had some occasional issues with it on macOS. It worked successfully when we manually disconnected our WiFi, but would sometimes fail when we changed between server locations.

Kill switch test results with VPN.AC on macOS showing no leaks

In this instance, when we tested VPN.AC’s kill switch there were no leaks. However that wasn’t always the case.

This isn’t catastrophic, as changing server locations is usually something initiated willingly by the user. However, it’s an inconvenience if you need to change servers while in the middle of a sensitive or private task.

Extra Features Vary by Platform

We always prefer VPNs to have one consistent set of features across all of its apps. VPN.AC can be confusing to use due to how different the options in each of its apps are.

See the table below for an overview of all of VPN.AC’s extra features and what platforms they’re available on:

Split tunneling is the big miss here. It’s not as vital for security as the kill switch, but it’s a super popular and useful feature that’s present on the vast majority of VPNs. VPN.AC only including it on Android is a very unusual choice.

We also like the inclusion of IPv6 blocking on desktop, which ensures your IPv6 address won’t leak (if you have one).

DNS filtering is the latest feature to be added to VPN.AC. It’s disabled by default on Windows and Android, but has two other modes: SecureDNS and SecureDNS + local streaming.

When set to SecureDNS VPN.AC will block ads, malware, and trackers, while also letting you access the US Netflix library.

When set to SecureDNS + local streaming it will act as a blocker as above, but while letting you access your usual, local Netflix library.

VPN.AC being tested by a third party tool for its effectiveness as an ad and tracker blocker

VPN.AC performed very well, but an outright ad and tracker blocker like uBlock Origin would score close to 100%.

VPN.AC’s content blocker works well, successfully preventing 84% of all ads and trackers – that’s above average for a VPN ad blocking tool.

VPN.AC Is Safe to Use on All Platforms

We scanned all of VPN.AC’s installers using VirusTotal.com, and the results were all clean: it’s safe to install on your personal devices.

The results of a VPN.AC Windows app scan in VirusTotal - the results are clean

VirusTotal runs checks on a huge and constantly-updated database of known viruses and malware.

We also checked it with the εxodus tool to see what Android app permissions it demands:

VPN.AC being checked for permissions by the exodus tool

Some permissions are absolutely necessary for a VPN to operate – we are satisfied with almost all of VPN.AC’s.

It’s ordinary to see at least a few permissions here due to the nature of how VPNs work. However there is one which struck us as odd – we do not know why VPN.AC requires permission to read all external storage devices attached to your device.

That said, we still trust VPN.AC on Android.

Streaming

Unlocks a variety of streaming services, but poor for Netflix

7.47.4/10
How is this calculated?

Streaming is rated by the number of different services unlocked, how many regional libraries are viewable, and how consistently the VPN can access them.

Netflix, BBC iPlayer, HBO Max, DAZN, and Amazon Prime Video are all tested on a weekly basis.

VPN.AC works with a range of different streaming sites from around the world, including Amazon Prime Video US, BBC iPlayer, Disney+, ITV Hub, All 4, and YouTube. However it can only unblock the US Netflix library, which is a disappointment. HBO Max and Hulu are accessible, but only via the browser extension.

Ranked #20 out of 56 VPNs for Streaming

How much use you’ll get out of VPN.AC for streaming depends on where you are in the world. It does a great job of unblocking all three major UK-based services: BBC iPlayer, ITV Hub, and All 4. We found it worked on any UK server and any protocol.

This isn’t very useful if you live in the UK, but is brilliant if you don’t.

It’s also pretty good for unblocking US streaming sites: it works for US Netflix, Amazon Prime Video US, and Disney+’s US library.

Getting it to work with some of them isn’t straightforward, though. To access Disney+ we had to use the OpenVPN XOR protocol.

With VPN.AC connected to a US server we weren’t able to log into Netflix. But, if we logged in with the VPN disconnected, then connected to a US server once signed in, it worked fine.

Accessing US Netflix from overseas while using VPN.AC

In this example we’re connected to a German VPN.AC server but still accessing US Netflix.

VPN.AC also seems to use US Netflix as a general fallback for whenever the VPN is connected. This means that, while it failed to unblock any other Netflix region, it unblocked US Netflix no matter what server we were connected to – regardless of the region.

Trying to access Hulu from outside the US with VPN.AC, and failing

After a long time on a black screen, Hulu would also sometimes show us error code P-DEV322.

It looked like it was going to work with Hulu, as it allowed us to log in and select a show to watch, but the screen would simply remain black with nothing playing.

HBO Max was similar. We could log in, but it was unable to play anything. It showed us a couple of error codes we’d never seen before: e09e07e0-b551-4356-8799-f4c0210111cc (Something Went Wrong) and simply a generic “Can’t Play Title.”

HBO Max cryptic error code while using a VPN

HBO Max’s error code doesn’t tell you what went wrong, but it’s safe to say it’s related to using a VPN.

However, we then tested those two services while connected to the VPN.AC Chrome browser extension. This time, it successfully unblocked both. The same thing happened with the Amazon Fire TV app, too.

Watching Hulu from the UK by using VPN.AC's Chrome extension

Hulu streamed with no issues when using the Chrome extension – here we show it working in the Opera GX browser.

Torrenting

Very fast torrenting - if there’s an optimized server near you

8.28.2/10
How is this calculated?

We calculate the average download bitrate of every VPN using a bespoke torrenting setup.

Testing also factors in the percentage of servers which permit P2P, plus useful features like port forwarding.

We recorded extremely impressive P2P bitrates while using VPN.AC, but that’s because we’re lucky to have a torrenting-optimized server located near us. VPN.AC allows torrenting on the whole network, but speeds are massively slowed on regular servers.

Ranked #17 out of 56 VPNs for Torrenting

While we like that VPN.AC allows torrenting across its entire server network, we were disappointed to find while testing that it seriously caps speeds on non-optimized servers.

Torrenting with qBittorrent while using VPN.AC

VPN.AC’s dedicated P2P servers recorded some very impressive download bitrates.

We recorded excellent download speeds on the P2P-optimized France and Netherlands servers: an average of 9.1MiB/s versus 10.0MiB/s with no VPN at all is fantastic for torrenters.

However when we connected to a UK server, which should in theory be even closer to us, we found speeds plummeted to just 1.5MiB/s on average. This is because the UK has no P2P-optimized servers.

While we were able to work around this, not everyone will be so lucky. The entirety of Asia, Oceania, and South America are left with no torrenting servers. You can still torrent on your nearest ordinary VPN.AC server, but you’ll likely experience the same slow speeds we did when trying the same.

A Safe & Secure Choice for Torrenting

We have no concerns with VPN.AC and torrenting when it comes to safety, though. We fully approve of its minimal logging policy and it has a functioning kill switch.

There’s no port forwarding, which is a shame, but the VPN.AC knowledge base does have instructions for how to set up the SOCKS5 proxy on qBitTorrent, uTorrent, and Deluge.

It also offers a useful guide on how to set up a torrenting-specific kill switch in Windows. If you follow those steps, your PC will automatically stop all torrenting traffic if the VPN fails, preventing an IP leak.

Server Locations

A solid selection of locations, but large areas left unserved

7.27.2/10
How is this calculated?

The global spread and coverage of the VPN server network is the most important factor here.

We also consider the number of city-level servers, plus how many IP addresses are maintained.

This rating does not directly contribute to the Overall Rating, but instead makes up a portion of the Security & Features rating.

If you live in North America or Europe then you’ll have no issue with VPN.AC’s network of servers in 21 countries. It also has a nice selection in the Asia-Pacific region. The entire network is made of real, bare-metal servers genuinely located in the region they say they are. However the Middle-East and all of Africa are entirely ignored, and Brazil is the only option in South America. If you live in one of these regions then VPN.AC is a poor choice.

Ranked #35 out of 56 VPNs for Server Locations

Globe with a blue flag
21 Countries
Image of a city landscape
47 Cities
Image of a pink marker
117+ IP Addresses

We want to stress how rare it is for a VPN to use a 100% privately-owned server network with zero virtual server options. VPN.AC has done just this, and the result is a heightened level of security and better speeds.

However, it’s a shame that this has meant compromises on the spread of its server network. We appreciate that it’s expensive to not use any virtual or rented servers, but it means that an enormous chunk of the world is left with no VPN.AC servers near it.

VPN.AC has servers in 21 countries: 17 of them are in Western and Southern Europe. There are no servers in the Middle East, no servers in Africa, and only one server location in South America (Brazil).

When a server network is this concentrated it effectively limits who can use the service properly. If you live in any of the regions which aren’t served by VPN.AC then we strongly advise you consider a different VPN, as good as VPN.AC is.

Excellent Double Hop & China-Optimized Servers

VPN.AC has one of the best ranges of Double VPN servers we’ve encountered. It’s called Double Hop within the app, and it has exit nodes in eight different countries spread well around the world.

VPN.AC's Double Hop server selection

Most VPNs that offer Double VPN have far fewer choices than VPN.AC.

Double Hop routes your traffic to a VPN server in one location, before then sending it on to a server in a second location – the one which you will be assigned an IP address from.

This will slow down your internet speeds, but increase security.

VPN.AC also has servers in seven locations specifically optimized for use in China. There’s nothing special about them at a glance, but we’ve found them to be extremely effective for bypassing the Great Firewall.

Bypassing Web Censorship

A great VPN to use in China

9.89.8/10
How is this calculated?

Our remote-access server in Shanghai, China routinely tests if a VPN can beat restrictions and access a free, open internet. Obfuscation technologies and nearby servers are also a contributing factor.

This rating does not directly contribute to the Overall Rating, but instead makes up a portion of the Security & Features rating.

VPN.AC is a very good choice for use in highly-censored regions like China. In our testing it manages to access blocked websites with reliable consistency. It has a range of servers and obfuscation tools that meant we were able to beat the Great Firewall the majority of the time. Very few VPNs do it better than this.

Ranked #2 out of 56 VPNs for Bypassing Web Censorship

VPN.AC puts a lot of effort and resources into working well in China, and it’s paid off. Our testing has found it to be one of the most reliable VPNs for beating strict censorship over the past year.

There’s an option within its advanced settings menu labeled “I am in China or other censored country“. Toggling this on reveals a list of China-optimized options in the main server list.

Combine one of these servers with the OpenVPN XOR protocol/obfuscation combo offered in all of its apps and you’re ready to access websites ordinarily blocked within China, such as Instagram and YouTube.

VPN.AC has loads of servers optimized for use in China, and it didn't slow down our internet as much as other China VPNs have.

While we can confirm that it works in China thanks to our server in Shanghai, we can’t perform tests in other censored countries, like Russia or Turkey. However, given that China’s censorship is the most rigorous and complex, we’re confident recommending VPN.AC for any other censored region.

VPN.AC just misses out on being one of the most reliable VPNs for China – see how it compares to the best VPNs here.

Device & OS Compatibility

Available on all popular platforms, plus router & browser extensions

How is this rated?

A quality VPN should maintain functional, fully-featured applications and extensions for as many platforms and devices as possible.

This does not directly contribute to the Overall Rating, but instead makes up a portion of the Ease of Use rating.

VPN.AC might not have the prettiest apps, but they have a consistent design across all the many popular platforms it supports – both desktop, mobile, and streaming devices. There are extensions for the most popular browsers, and anything else that isn’t directly supported by it can be covered by a router installation.

Apps

VPN.AC can be installed on all the most popular devices and platforms:

  1. Windows
  2. Mac
  3. iOS
  4. Android
  5. Linux
  6. Router

We appreciate the consistency in the designs between the most popular choices: VPN.AC looks virtually identical on Windows, macOS, iOS, and Android.

There’s also a full-GUI Linux app available for Ubuntu, Debian, and Mint. VPN.AC states that it’s officially in beta, but testing it on our Ubuntu 20 system it works well and appears identical to its Windows counterpart. There’s also a command line interface option, if you prefer that.

VPN.AC also has custom setup options for routers. There’s quite a few options, so here’s a breakdown of what you can configure and on what router type:

VPN.AC offers WireGuard configuration files for three different types of router, but still doesn’t offer it as a protocol within its main app – an odd choice and something we really want to see changed in the future.

Games Consoles & Streaming Devices

VPN.AC has a dedicated app for Amazon Fire TV devices. Like many VPN apps for the platform, it doesn’t look great and can be a little clunky to use, but it works well. It unblocks all of the streaming services that the desktop can (like Netflix US and Amazon Prime Video US), plus some others that only the browser extensions can (like Hulu and HBO Max).

There’s no VPN.AC app available for Chromecast with Google TV, and it’s not possible to install VPN apps directly onto other streaming devices or games consoles, but VPN.AC’s router configuration files give you a way to protect all of them.

  1. Apple TV
  2. Amazon Fire TV
  3. Chromecast
  4. Nintendo
  5. PlayStation
  6. Roku
  7. Xbox

Browser Extensions

VPN.AC’s browser extension, SecureProxy, is available on:

  1. Chrome
  2. Firefox
  3. Opera

VPN.AC’s browser extensions are excellent. Not only do they offer you access to even more server locations than are available in the main app, they also work extremely well to unblock streaming services (even unblocking more than the main app can).

VPN.AC's Chrome browser extension unblocks Hulu from its US New York Server

We had the most success when using the US East – New York server to access Hulu.

It also fully encrypts and effectively geo spoofs your traffic, has a WebRTC blocker, and can be used to bypass internet censorship in China. It also has a website split tunnel, which allows you to choose which sites are tunneled by the browser VPN and which aren’t.

It’s all of these great features that makes it one of the best VPN browser extensions for Chrome.

Ease of Use

Straightforward apps with just the right level of customization

9.19.1/10
How is this calculated?

This rating mainly consists of the intuitiveness of setup and everyday use.

Device or platform compatibility and customization options are also a factor.

While VPN.AC is definitely in need of a facelift to make it feel a bit more modern, there’s no denying how simple it is to use. Everything is where you’d expect it to be, and more advanced features are clearly labeled. There’s also a choice between light and dark modes on all its apps.

Ranked #8 out of 56 VPNs for Ease of Use

How to Connect to a Server with VPN.AC

  1. Selecting a server in VPN.AC for desktop

  2. Selecting a server in VPN.AC for mobile

How to Change Settings in VPN.AC

  1. Changing settings in VPN.AC for desktop

  2. Changing settings in VPN.AC for mobile

We’ve already outlined all of the technical differences between VPN.AC on each platform – here’s a closer look at each of its apps.

VPN.AC Windows Program

VPN.AC's Windows 10 homescreen

VPNs often prioritize Windows when designing their apps, and VPN.AC is no exception – although not by much.

Whether this is your first time trying a VPN or you’re a regular user, we’re confident you’ll have no issues using VPN.AC’s Windows client.

You don’t have to worry about anything more than the server list and the connect button if all you want is basic protection, while the advanced features offer enough flexibility to customize the service to your liking.

The only glaring absence is the lack of split tunneling, which is something we consider to be part of a basic VPN feature set on Windows.

VPN.AC macOS App

VPN.AC homescreen while connected on Android

The macOS app looks identical to the Windows one, which is nice – it helps prevent confusion and shows that the VPN.AC development team cares about Mac users (who often get left behind).

All it’s missing versus the Windows version is its DNS filtering ad blocker.

VPN.AC Linux GUI Client

VPN.AC's homescreen on Linux

While VPN.AC says that its native Linux app is in beta, we’ve seen nothing in our testing to indicate that you shouldn’t be using it.

Unlike its Windows and macOS siblings it’s missing IPv6 blocking, which means your IPv6 address could potentially be exposed if your connection has one.

VPN.AC iOS App

VPN.AC for iOS showing its light theme homescreen

VPN.AC on iOS is very light on features. It has a reliable kill switch, and you can still use China-optimized servers, but that’s pretty much all there is. The design may be similar to the desktop versions, but that’s all they have in common.

VPN.AC Android App

VPN.AC homescreen while connected on Android

The Android app is the only version of VPN.AC to feature split tunneling, which is highly unusual, but at least one platform has it. With it you can control which apps are protected when VPN.AC is connected and which are left outside of the VPN tunnel.

It looks just like the desktop versions, with the only thing missing being IPv6 blocking.

VPN.AC Fire TV App

The VPN.AC app for Fire TV Stick

VPN.AC’s app for Amazon Fire TV devices is the most visually different of all of them. In our experience VPNs often struggle to make a clean, smooth, usable app for Fire TV – and VPN.AC is no exception.

However it works well, and once you get used to it it’s not so bad to navigate. We also like that it also has some of the extra features from the desktop app available within it. For simply connecting to a server and then using your favorite streaming service, it’s totally serviceable.

The VPN.AC browser extension is super simple to use.

While it may look a lot like the full desktop app there’s far fewer options to worry about. You get access to all the servers, which you can connect to in just a couple of clicks. Then within the preferences menu there’s a toggle to reveal the China-optimized servers, a WebRTC leak blocker, and an ‘Excluded websites’ option.

This essentially acts as a split tunnel, but for individual websites rather than apps. With it you can allow certain websites to operate outside of its VPN encryption – this can be useful for avoiding CAPTCHAs and added security checks for websites like online banking, or if you need to be in your home region to access a certain streaming site.

Customer Support

Good online resources but no live chat

7.77.7/10
How is this calculated?

This rating is based on our assessment of each VPN’s:

  • Email support
  • Live chat support
  • Online resources

Not every VPN offers all of these, and they often vary in quality and response time.

We always want to see live chat support from real human agents when reviewing a VPN. VPN.AC still doesn’t offer this. It has some helpful tutorials and a decent knowledge base on its website, but having to wait a day for a help ticket response is frustrating.

Ranked #30 out of 56 VPNs for Customer Support

Customer SupportAvailable in VPN.AC
24/7 Live Chat SupportNo
24/7 Email SupportNo
Live Chat SupportNo
EmailNo
Email Support via Online FormYes
No Support AvailableNo
Tutorial VideosNo
Online ResourcesYes

VPN.AC has two sections within the support area of its website: tutorials and knowledge base. The tutorials on offer show you how to install the VPN on every available device and operating system – both for the dedicated apps as well as setting up individual protocols via third party software.

The knowledge base covers most other topics. If you have questions regarding the differences between protocols, what the features within the app do, or simply how billing works, we were impressed by the scope and detail of the articles available.

It’s a shame, then, that you have to rely on a ticketing system to get any direct queries answered by a VPN.AC employee.

VPN.AC customer support response to a user query

VPN.AC’s customer support are knowledgeable and keen to help, but the wait times take away from that.

When we submitted a question at around 3pm we had to wait until 8am the following day for a reply.

In fairness to VPN.AC this isn’t always the case – we’ve had conversations before where we’ve received a response after just 25 minutes. The inconsistency is still an issue, though. If you’re struggling to get your VPN to work you want to know that a quick resolution is guaranteed.

Price & Value

A fair price, but we don’t like its refund policy

77.0/10
How is this calculated?

Price & Value for Money receives a rating, but is not factored into our Overall Rating. We believe the reader should decide what is or isn’t a reasonable price.

A good rating here isn’t just based on how cheap the VPN is, but for the value it offers overall.

At $3.75 per month on its cheapest deal, VPN.AC is very reasonably priced. Its one-month price of $9.00 is also a great deal if you just want to try it out. What we like less is its vague seven-day refund policy, which seems to imply you might not get your money back unless you can offer a concrete reason why.

Ranked #22 out of 56 VPNs for Price & Value

VPN.AC has four different pricing plans, with its two-year deal being the cheapest: an up-front payment of $90.00 is equal to $3.75 per month. We consider anything under $3.00 to be cheap, so for a service as good as VPN.AC we’d say you’re definitely getting your money’s worth.

  1. Monthly

    US$9.00/mo

    Billed $9.00 every month
  2. 3 Month(s)

    US$8.00/mo

    Billed $24.00 every 3 months
    Save 11%
  3. 12 Month(s)

    US$4.80/mo

    Billed $58.00 every 12 months
    Save 46%
  4. 2 Year(s)

    US$3.75/mo

    Billed $90.00 every 2 years
    Save 62%

What we like even more is the very reasonable $9.00 for a single month-long subscription. That’s considerably cheaper than most of the competition, and a great solution if you want to try it out before locking yourself in longer-term.

Given how well VPN.AC works in China, it’s also a great solution if you’re taking a trip and only need a VPN for the duration

Payment & Refund Options

VPN.AC accepts a good range of payment methods, including:

  1. American Express
  2. Bitcoin
  3. Bitcoin Cash
  4. Giropay
  5. iDeal
  6. Mastercard
  7. PayPal
  8. UnionPay
  9. Visa
  10. WebMoney

It’s a shame then that VPN.AC’s refund policy is so vague and unusual. First of all, seven days is considerably shorter than the industry-standard 30-day refund period – we’d really appreciate VPN.AC extending it.

Then there’s also the confusing wording within VPN.AC’s terms of service. On the one hand, it says that it will grant you a full refund “if you are not satisfied with our VPN service or you can’t use our service for technical reasons,” which is what we’re used to seeing.

However it then goes on to say that:

“Refund requests must be based on valid reasons. We do not refund orders for vague reasons like “it doesn’t work” without providing us details and letting us help.”

It’s unclear what exactly is a good enough reason to get your money back.

The Bottom Line

A strong all-round VPN at a good price

Fast, affordable, great in China, and good for unblocking streaming services, VPN.AC has very few real downsides.

It’s not as popular as some of the bigger names on the market, but our testing has found that it consistently performs to a very high level. While there may be other services that do what it does well even better, VPN.AC still has a good combination of strengths that might be enough to entice you into trying it.

Additional research by David Hughes

Alternatives to VPN.AC

The new ExpressVPN logo

ExpressVPN

9.79.7/10

If you’re not fully won over by VPN.AC, we’d recommend ExpressVPN for the simple fact that it has more server choices and is our number one recommendation overall. It’s more expensive, but that gets you a nearly faultless product. Read ExpressVPN review

NordVPN

NordVPN

9.59.5/10

Our second choice is naturally our second overall recommendation – NordVPN. Like ExpressVPN and compared to VPN.AC you have a greater variety of global server selection. You might be tempted due to its even cheaper price, too. Read NordVPN review


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