5 Best VPNs for Digital Nomads in 2022

Being a digital nomad, you’ve probably noticed that the Internet isn’t quite open as it appears to be. Websites can be geo-restricted and digital services can be partially or fully blocked in certain countries. However, by using the best VPN for digital nomads, you can forget about digital restrictions while creating a safe environment for yourself and your clients.

With that said, being a digital nomad will force you to be proactive in terms of bypassing Web roadblocks. More precisely, you’ll need a VPN with advanced methods of unblocking websites. That way, you can access your bank account from abroad, regain access to your communication tools (such as Slack, Zoom, Skype, and similar), and continue to access news, media, and streaming websites that you used back home.

Of course, let’s not forget that being a digital nomad also forces you to think about your security. If you use Wi-Fi networks in coworking spaces, coffee shops, restaurants, airports, or hotels – you’ll definitely want a VPN. After all, that's the only way to secure any Web connection without worrying about someone collecting your data.

So, let's start talking about the best VPNs for digital nomads. Read this guide carefully, as we'll also share plenty of valuable tips.

How to Use a VPN as a Digital Nomad

In essence, using a VPN is quite simple, even if you're a digital nomad who uses a different Web connection each day. So, here’s how you’ll use a VPN.

  1. Pick an ultra-capable VPN suitable for digital nomads, like ExpressVPN. You can try it risk-free for 30 days.
  2. Once you subscribe, go ahead and download the VPN app on your device(s).
  3. Launch the VPN and log in. You’ll now access your VPN’s home screen.
  4. Connect to a VPN server (pick a country where the Internet is more open).
  5. Your connection is now secured. So, feel free to proceed with your work.

Best VPN for Digital Nomads

You’re after the best VPN for digital nomads, which means you need a VPN with high-end protocols (multiple protocols, preferably) and solid encryption (taking care of your privacy). You’ll also want a VPN with many servers, the ability to unblock websites, and fast customer support.

Based on the criteria mentioned above, here are the 5 best VPNs for digital nomads:

  1. ExpressVPN – Best VPN Overall for Digital Nomads
  2. NordVPN – Best for Ultra-High Privacy Protection
  3. CyberGhost VPN – Best for Privacy + Entertainment
  4. Surfshark – Best All-In-One VPN
  5. Private Internet Access – Best for Advanced Users

1. ExpressVPN – Best VPN Overall for Digital Nomads

Editor's Pick
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Without a single doubt, the best VPN for digital nomads, frequent travelers, as well as those who work remotely is – ExpressVPN. It works “out of the box,” presenting a compelling set of security- and privacy-focused features while unblocking the Web from anywhere.

ExpressVPN offers modern-looking software available for practically any device. You can install it on your computer, phone, tablet, and more. The process of installing this VPN is straightforward, as there's a dedicated 'Downloads' page on its official site. And if you work from a country where VPNs are regulated, ExpressVPN's team can supply you with installation files in alternative ways.

This VPN is powered by solid protocols like OpenVPN and Lightway. Both of those work across 3,000 servers scattered across 90+ servers. When it comes to picking a location, you'll have an endless range of options. And if you care about speed, ExpressVPN will help you test its servers before connecting. That's a crucial feature for digital nomads, helping you find just the right balance between performance and security.

We’ll also note that ExpressVPN has been expanding lately. It now protects against advanced types of tracking and even offers a password manager (available in beta). It's a holistic solution to your privacy protection, ensuring your access to the Web is uninterrupted.

To learn more about this capable VPN, read our in-depth ExpressVPN review.

PROS

  • Incredibly capable VPN.
  • Bulletproof privacy protection.
  • Unblocks any website out there.
  • Reliable and stable performance.

CONS

  • Limited fine-tuning.

2. NordVPN – Best for Ultra-High Privacy Protection

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NordVPN takes great pride in its privacy-focused features. We have to say that's justified, as NordVPN has a lot of unique tools that enhance your privacy on the Web. It's a trustworthy, immensely capable, and easy-to-use VPN solution.

This VPN wouldn’t be one of the best VPNs for digital nomads if it weren’t available on any device. NordVPN offers streamlined software that works mostly without fine-tuning. Once you install and launch it, you’ll get a clear idea of how everything works. That’s why we recommend this VPN even to first-time VPN users.

There’s AES-256 encryption on board, the strongest type of commercially available encryption. Then, you get OpenVPN, NordLynx, and IKEv2 protocols. No matter which of those you use, unblocking websites should not be a problem. And also, there are 5,000+ servers in around 60 countries – and many of those servers are specialized.

For example, there are obfuscated servers (for unblocking the Web in restrictive countries). Then, there are servers for accessing the Tor network, downloading torrenting, and even chaining multiple servers. All those come in handy while working from abroad, especially while using public Wi-Fi connections.

There’s plenty more to say about this VPN. So, if you want to know more, here’s our NordVPN review.

PROS

  • Advanced (specialized) VPN servers.
  • No data logging whatsoever.
  • Basic protection against malware.
  • Unblocks any website out there.

CONS

  • Not all servers are obfuscated.
  • Some fine-tuning is recommended.

3. CyberGhost VPN – Best for Privacy + Entertainment

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CyberGhost is a long-standing VPN provider that offers reliable privacy protection and a massive server network that features specialized VPN servers.

Of course, the basics are there as well. CyberGhost VPN is present on any device you might use as a digital nomad for work or entertainment. It comes with a mobile-like interface that can be expanded into a fully-featured desktop UI, so you’ll get a lot of flexibility. Aside from that, you’ll also get 7 simultaneous connections, which seems quite generous.

CyberGhost has one of the most expansive server fleets, with 7,500+ servers in 90+ countries. Its standard servers do a great job of protecting your privacy, as they’re backed by protocols such as OpenVPN, WireGuard, and IKEv2. Also, there's AES-256 encryption. And since this is a no-logs VPN service, it's evident that it provides in-depth digital privacy protection.

Aside from securing the privacy of your data (and your clients’ data), CyberGhost is a good option for entertainment. It has specialized servers for torrenting, gaming, and streaming. So, if you’re a digital nomad who relies on their digital devices for entertainment, this VPN won’t let you down (no matter from which country you connect to its servers).

Turn to our CyberGhost VPN review to learn more about this VPN’s interface, speed, security, and plenty more.

PROS

  • Robust and reliable VPN protocols.
  • Sizeable server fleet.
  • Broad device support.
  • Great for entertainment as well.

CONS

  • Not the fastest option around.
  • Might not work in overly restrictive countries.

4. Surfshark – Best All-In-One VPN

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Surfshark is an excellent example of how an ultra-powerful VPN can also be very easy to use. It features an arsenal of tools (some of which are unique) while also giving you one-click privacy protection. As such, it’s especially suitable for inexperienced users.

This VPN works on any desktop or mobile device, and it features a lightweight app. So, if you’re a digital nomad who works from their computer, smartphone, or tablet, you’ll get to implement Surfshark into your workflow quite easily. On top of that, you’ll get an unlimited number of simultaneous connections, so there’ll be one less restriction to worry about.

You also get a small set of capable protocols (OpenVPN, WireGuard, IKEv2). There’s also AES-256 encryption, as well as a special ‘NoBorders’ mode. Using that mode, you’ll force the VPN to use smaller data packets, making it easier to bypass Internet restrictions. For digital nomads, that means unblocking the Web from any place on the planet.

We’ll also mention that Surfshark has 3,200+ servers in around 65 countries. So, it’s not the biggest server network – but it’s a highly innovative one. This VPN has a feature called 'Nexus,' which lets you use more than a single VPN server at any given moment. That means the VPN will rotate your IP address every couple of minutes, leaving no trace of your whereabouts.

Take a more comprehensive look at this VPN via our Surfshark review.

PROS

  • One-click VPN solution.
  • Extra-fast performance.
  • Great for unblocking websites.
  • Great for practically any use.

CONS

  • Limited customization.
  • Medium-sized server network.

5. Private Internet Access – Best for Advanced Users

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Digital nomads typically know their stuff when it comes to software. So, we’re sure many of you are looking for an ultra-capable VPN that caters to advanced users. That’s why we want to introduce you to Private Internet Access (PIA).

Frankly, PIA can also be used by inexperienced users. That's because it comes with a very simple installation procedure while also offering a modular interface. Practically anything about PIA can be customized, as it comes as a simple-looking VPN "out of the box." Still, don't make a mistake thinking that you’ll get anything less than top-shelf features.

PIA has 35,000+ servers, so it has the biggest VPN server network out there. Then, you can customize how you use those servers. For example, you can fine-tune individual VPN protocols (such as OpenVPN and WireGuard, both of which are high-end). You can even set a custom level of encryption. There are even multiple kill switch mechanisms that prevent leaks should anything happen to your Web connection.

With all that said, it’s no wonder that PIA brings fast speeds, tough privacy protection, and the ability to unblock any website. However, we have to note it's not the best option for streaming. So, if you're a digital nomad looking for a work-related VPN, you'll love what PIA has to offer.

Intrigued? If you are, don’t forget to read our Private Internet Access review.

PROS

  • In-depth customization possible.
  • Absolutely massive server network.
  • Top-shelf protocols and encryption.
  • Works on any device out there.

CONS

  • Can be slow (unless optimized).
  • Best for advanced users (primarily).

Why Do Digital Nomads Need a VPN?

Perhaps you already know that VPNs protect your privacy and secure any Web connection. Those benefits are essential for digital nomads - but VPNs can do more. So, here's precisely why digital nomads need to use a VPN:

  • Protect Your & Your Clients’ Privacy: Establishing long-lasting relationships with your clients requires you to think about their digital privacy. In other words, you can encrypt your data using a VPN, ensuring your clients’ confidential files never leave your VPN tunnel. With that said, VPNs are the easiest way to secure your work environment, requiring practically no effort on your part.
  • Ensure Smooth Access to Your Digital Tools: Digital nomads who travel through foreign countries can expect plenty of geo-restrictions on the Web. Your digital tools (the ones you use for your everyday work) might not work as expected. On top of that, your banking apps and payments-related services will most certainly try to block your access (due to their increased security measures). A VPN will make it look like you’re back home, giving you access to your digital tools without any obstructions.
  • Secure Any Web Connection: Physical and information security risks can make it tricky to be a digital nomad. So, you’ll appreciate every help you can get. If you plan to use public Wi-Fi networks (like those in coffee shops, for example) or semi-public ones (like those in coworking spaces), a VPN will ensure that other devices can’t reach yours. That’s one of the ways VPNs can stop hacking attempts.
  • Gain Access to Your Favorite Websites: Just because you’re away from home doesn’t mean you should stop following what happens there. However, that’s easier said than done, as local news websites often don’t work internationally. So, based on your country of origin, find a VPN that has servers in that country, and you'll get to access your favorite local sites.
  • Upgrade Your Entertainment: After a successful day of remote work, you’ll want to kick back and relax a bit. So, if you rely on your digital devices for entertainment, know that a VPN will help you access media streaming platforms available in your home country. That’s how you can watch Netflix, Hulu, Prime Video, Disney Plus, and more – wherever you are.

How to Pick the Best VPN for Digital Nomads?

Digital nomads need a reliable VPN that protects their privacy, uses high-end encryption, brings apps for many devices, etc. With that said, the following steps will help you find a VPN suitable for digital nomads and tailored to your specific needs:

  • Step 1 – Ensure All Your Devices Are Covered: You probably do most of your work on your laptop. However, you might also use your phone and tablet to stay in touch with your clients. So, get a VPN with native software for Windows, macOS, Linux, iOS, Android, and any other platform you might use.
  • Step 2 – Ensure You Get the Best Protection: If you’re not familiar with VPN protocols, use the provided link to learn which ones you should stick to. You’ll see that we recommend OpenVPN and WireGuard, while IKEv2 is great for mobile connectivity. You'll also want a VPN with AES-256 encryption, which shouldn't be too hard to find. Still, pay close attention to what protocols you get on individual platforms.
  • Step 3 – Go Beyond Basic Data Protection: So far, you narrowed down your selection of VPNs based on the devices/platforms you use, and you also made sure to get the best protocols and encryption. However, digital nomads need to go beyond that. We highly recommend getting a no-logs VN service, ensuring your communication with clients remains confidential. Here’s how to verify VPNs’ no-logs claims.
  • Step 4 – Get a VPN That’ll Always Be There for You: Even the most reliable VPN can sometimes encounter issues. That’s crucial to keep in mind, as working remotely doesn’t allow you to have lengthy Web connectivity obstructions. So, when something unexpected happens (and it will, especially if you travel often and connect to the Web via public Wi-Fi), you’ll want a VPN that offers live chat support and is quick to assist.
  • Step 5 – Play It Safe & Secure Your Investment: Most VPNs allow you to save quite a lot, but only if you get a long-term subscription. So, to secure your investment, pick a VPN with a generous money-back policy. And, of course, make sure to read the fine print.

Final Thoughts

Being a digital nomad has many perks – but working remotely requires you to be proactive in protecting your digital privacy. There's simply no better way to take care of your cyber-security than to use a reliable and trustworthy VPN.

In the end, we’ll remind you that our #1 recommendation is ExpressVPN. That’s the best VPN for digital nomads as it checks all the right boxes (and then some more).

To check other options, here’s our guide to the best VPNs overall. You'll find many more VPNs there, which we decided to highlight after having tested more than 60 VPN providers.

FAQ

What’s the Best VPN for Working from Abroad?

As per our findings, the best VPN for working from abroad is ExpressVPN, as it has 3,000+ servers in more than 90 countries.

That means you can connect to servers in 90+ countries, which increases your chances of unblocking websites and finding nearby VPN servers when you need the fastest possible performance.

What’s the Most Secure VPN for Digital Nomads?

Right now, the most secure VPNs for digital nomads are ExpressVPN and NordVPN – both of which come with high-end security and privacy protection.

ExpressVPN is backed by ultra-strong protocols and uncrackable encryption, while it also features servers that come without hard drives (they use RAM only).

NordVPN is a good pick if you need specialized servers for chaining multiple servers or accessing the Tor network.

What’s the Fastest VPN for Digital Nomads?

As per our tests, the fastest VPNs right now are ExpressVPN and Surfshark. Both of those come with optimized servers suitable for practically any use.

We’ll also note that you don’t have to fine-tune or optimize ExpressVPN or Surfshark to get the fastest speeds. They already come optimized “out of the box.” All you need to do is connect to one of their servers.

Is ExpressVPN Good for Digital Nomads?

Yes, ExpressVPN is more than great for digital nomads. In fact, it's our #1 recommendation as it comes with every single tool you need to protect your privacy.

Is NordVPN Good for Digital Nomads?

Yes, NordVPN is a good pick for digital nomads. It has a sizeable server fleet and bulletproof privacy protection and can unblock practically any website.

What’s the Best Free VPN for Digital Nomads?

There's no such thing as the best free VPN for digital nomads. We can't recommend a single free VPN for remote work, as they all have strict limitations.

A free VPN will limit your Web connection's speed while also limiting your privacy protection (as they typically bring less secure encryption and protocols). So, you'll always run the risk of a data leak, which is something that no digital nomad should ever allow.

If you’re on a tight budget, we have a guide to the best VPN deals, which we make sure to update once a month. You might also want to check these best cheap VPNs.

That’s all for our guide on the best digital nomad VPNs. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to use the comments section below. Lastly, thank you for reading!

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