Private Internet Access is a decent VPN, but it does fall short in some areas. Although speeds are reasonable, there are faster alternatives better for gaming and streaming. In addition, PIA is only so-so for overcoming geo-restrictions on streaming platforms. It is also based in the US, which isn’t ideal in terms of privacy.
No matter what your reason for wanting to leave PIA is, we have got you covered. In this guide, we’ve listed the best Private Internet Access alternatives. Our recommendations offer excellent value for money, fantastic accessibility, reliable security, and apps with the features you need to get the most out of the web.
In a rush to find a Private Internet Access alternative? Check out our favorites below:
- NordVPN: The best PIA alternative. NordVPN offers fast speeds, a wide feature set, and diskless servers. Fully audited apps, policies, and server network. Servers in 59+ countries are ideal for torrenting, gaming, and streaming. 30-day money-back guarantee.
- Surfshark: Best cheap PIA alternative. Allows unlimited connections. Works to access most popular streaming services, including Netflix US, Hulu, and HBO Max. Strong security features and built-in ad blocking.
- ExpressVPN: A reliable VPN with servers in 94 countries. Fast speeds, reliable security, and fantastic accessibility. OpenVPN comes with obfuscation by default. Based in the British Virgin Islands. Works with many popular streaming platforms.
- CyberGhost: Superb PIA alternative for beginners. Apps for all popular platforms. Has dedicated servers optimized for specific streaming services. Outstanding server speeds. No logs and based in Romania. 45-day money-back guarantee.
- PrivateVPN: A fast and reliable VPN based in Sweden. Great for streaming, torrenting, and gaining online privacy. Works with Netflix, Hulu, HBO Max, and more. The port forwarding feature lets you seed torrents.
- Atlas VPN: A cheap VPN that allows unlimited simultaneous connections. Decent speeds, easy to use, and includes native ad blocking and malware filtering. Works with Netflix US, iPlayer, Hulu, and many other streaming platforms.
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The internet is packed with VPN brands that are competing for your business. This makes it hard to know which provider to pick. To help you find the best possible alternative for PIA, we considered factors such as security, performance, and price. Below, we have included some of the criteria we used:
- A global server network that works to get you an IP address abroad
- Fast servers that work to access streaming services like Netflix on vacation
- A reliable no-logging policy, strong AES encryption, and other useful security features
- Unlimited bandwidth and no usage limits
- Fast protocols suitable for streaming, torrenting, and gaming
- Live chat support is available at any time of the day
- Apps for Windows, Mac, iOS, and Android that are versatile and packed with features
- Outstanding value for money
Best Private Internet Access Alternatives
To learn more about how we test and recommend VPNs, you can read our VPN testing methodology guide. For now, here’s our list of the best Private Internet Access alternatives:
Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS
NordVPN is a solid alternative to Private Internet Access for anybody who wants a fast, reliable, and versatile VPN. The VPN has apps for all popular platforms, and they come packed with useful features. This includes a kill switch, DNS leak protection, AES encryption (OpenVPN protocol), multi-hop connections, split tunneling, ad blocking, and malware filtering.
The VPN is based in Panama, which is solid in terms of privacy. It has a zero logs policy that has been independently audited, which means you can trust it never to keep records. Its apps and network have also been independently verified, and NordVPN’s network runs on diskless servers which allows them to be wiped in an emergency.
Servers are available in 59 countries, and they work to access many popular streaming services, including around a dozen Netflix regions, Hulu, HBO Max, Disney+, DAZN, BBC iPlayer, and many more. It throws in a free Smart DNS service so you can watch US streams on consoles, smart TVs, and other devices that won’t let you install a VPN directly.
The VPN is fast thanks to its proprietary NordLynx protocol, which makes it perfect for torrenting, HD streaming, and gaming. The only drawback is that it doesn’t allow port forwarding. Live chat support is available 24/7 and we found the agents to be very helpful and knowledgeable. You can compare it to PIA yourself thanks to its 30-day money-back guarantee.
- Zero logs policy
- Excellent speeds for streaming, gaming, and torrenting
- Works to access censored and region-blocked services
- Servers available in over 60 countries
- 30-day money-back guarantee
- Can take a long time to connect
BEST PIA ALTERNATIVE:NordVPN has strong security, reliable apps, a fully audited service, and diskless servers located in 60+ countries. Has a strict no-logging policy, a kill switch, obfuscated servers, multi-hop connections, and Tor over VPN. Fast NordLynx protocol and works to stream Netflix US. Has a 30-day money-back and 24/7 live chat support.
Check our full NordVPN review to find out more.
Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS
Surfshark should be your main port of call if you’re in the market for a cheaper option. The VPN has apps for Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, Firestick, and Linux. You can also install it on VPN-compatible routers, and it has a proxy extension for Firefox and Chrome. This makes it one of the most comprehensive VPNs on the market.
Impressively, considering the price point, you can use this VPN on an unlimited number of devices. You can share your account with friends and family if you want to. It makes it great for gaining privacy at home, at work, and on public wifi.
The apps come packed with useful features, including a kill switch, obfuscation (Chameleon), DNS leak protection, ad blocking, malware filtering, and split tunneling. Its No Borders mode helps users connect in countries with strict censorship and VPN blocks. It throws in a free Smart DNS service to help you unblock streams on consoles or other devices that don’t let you install a VPN directly.
Surfshark provides the WireGuard protocol, which makes it lightning-fast for streaming, gaming, and torrenting. The servers run in RAM exclusively, which means they can be erased instantly in an emergency. Like Nord, the VPN has had its no logs policy and infrastructure examined by a third-party auditing firm.
Surfshark provides access to IPs in a whopping 100 countries. It is also one of the few VPNs that works with upwards of 90% of the streaming services we have tested, including around a dozen Netflix regions, HBO Max, Hulu, Disney+, and BBC iPlayer.
Live chat support is available to ask questions at any time of day, and you can test it risk-free thanks to its 30-day money-back guarantee. It is also based in the British Virgin Islands, which is another good reason to switch over from PIA.
- Allows unlimited connections
- Keeps no logs
- Provides a secure, encrypted connection on all your devices
- Perfect for streaming
- Strong encryption and security features
- Some servers are a touch slower than others
BEST CHEAP PIA ALTERNATIVE:Surfshark offers strong encryption and excellent speeds thanks to its WireGuard implementation. Can access Netflix, Hulu, HBO, ESPN, FOX, BBC, and many more. Allows unlimited connections. Users get a 30-day money-back guarantee to compare the VPN to Private Internet Access.
Find out more in our Surfshark review
Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS
ExpressVPN is one of the longest-running VPNs on the market, launched in 2009. In that time it has maintained a solid reputation for providing internet privacy for its users. The VPN is a solid alternative to PIA because it is based in the British Virgin Islands. This country lacks invasive intelligence agencies, mandatory data retention directives, and is well out of reach of invasive jurisdictions like the US.
Apps are available for Windows, Mac, iOS, and Android. It has browser extensions for Firefox, Chrome, and Edge that control the primary VPN client directly from your browser. This makes it the most secure VPN extension available. You can also install Express on Linux and VPN-compatible routers.
Servers are available in 94 countries, and it has over 3000 in total. This allows it to avoid server congestion and gives users plenty of options for bypassing blocks and accessing regional restrictions. What’s more, those servers work exceptionally well for accessing regional streaming services, which makes it more attractive than PIA for most internet users.
During our tests, it worked with nearly 20 Netflix regions, ESPN, ABC, Hulu, BBC iPlayer, and tons of other international streaming platforms from around the world. It is fast for streaming and torrenting thanks to its proprietary Lightway protocol.
You can test it yourself using its 30-day money-back guarantee, and get help at any time of day thanks to its excellent live chat support. The only drawback is that Express is more expensive than our other recommendations, but you get what you pay for.
- Reliable security and privacy features
- More than 3,000 servers in 94 countries
- Works to stream tons of popular services
- No logs and solid AES-256 encryption
- Quite expensive
- Fewer features than our top choices
LARGE SERVER NETWORK:ExpressVPN is a superb alternative to PIA for those looking for a formidable all-rounder. Fully audited service with diskless servers. Strong AES encryption, kill switch, and obfuscation. Works with around 20 Netflix regions. 30-day money-back guarantee to compare it to PIA.
Read our ExpressVPN review to find out more.
Money-back guarantee: 45 DAYS
CyberGhost is not as advanced as many of the other VPNs we have recommended in this guide. However, it is an absolutely fantastic choice for people who want a simple VPN suitable for beginners. Despite being easy to use, CyberGhost has everything you need to gain privacy and online security, whether at home or on public wifi.
Apps are available for Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, and Firestick. You can install it manually on various VPN-compatible routers. The apps come with various useful features, including a kill switch, DNS leak protection, AES encryption, a choice of protocols (including OpenVPN and WireGuard), ad blocking, and malware filtering. It’s a solid option for preventing online tracking.
The nice thing about CyberGhost is that it doesn’t have any confusing settings and comes set up to provide privacy right out of the box. So all you need to do is install the VPN and connect to a server where you need it. Best of all, the VPN works with a wide range of streaming services from around the world.
In fact, it has dedicated streaming servers for many popular VOD and live TV services in around 15 different countries. It also allows torrenting, and it is fast thanks to its superb WireGuard implementation.
The only drawback is that you don’t get any advanced features. So if you want a VPN with split tunneling, port forwarding, multi-hop, or Tor over VPN, you will need to shop elsewhere. However, if your main concern is encrypting your connection to get privacy and bypass region blocks, then this VPN is an excellent low-cost option.
- Zero logs policy
- Based in Romania, a country with no mandatory data retention
- Works with Netflix, Hulu, HBO Max, and more
- Strong encryption and a kill switch
- Dedicated streaming servers make it easy to use
- No obfuscation feature
- No port forwarding
EASY TO USE:CyberGhost is the perfect PIA alternative for anybody who wants a simple option that makes gaining privacy and unblocking streaming platforms a cinch. Has more than 7000 servers in 89+ countries. Robust encryption protects your data at home or on public wifi. Has a generous 45-day money-back guarantee.
Read our CyberGhost review here.
Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS
PrivateVPN is based in Sweden and runs a network of bare metal servers completely controlled in-house. This ensures it can always adhere to its strict no-logging policy, and that no third parties ever have access to its servers.
Apps are available for Windows, Mac, iOS, and Android. Those apps are extremely reliable and come with AES encryption (OpenVPN protocol), DNS leak protection, a kill switch, and port forwarding. The latter makes it excellent for torrenting, as it is possible to seed on any popular torrent client.
The main caveat is that this VPN is not as fast as our other recommendations. In fact, on paper, it may not be quite as fast as PIA. However, in practice, this isn’t a reason to give it a pass, because during testing we were able to use it to stream in HD without issues.
PrivateVPN does not include ad blocking or malware filtering in its service, so, if this is something that interests you, we would recommend sticking to one of the services above.
Live chat support is available at any time of day, and the agents are great at solving issues and dealing with requests quickly. You can use the VPN on up to 5 devices simultaneously, which is usually enough for most users. You can try it yourself thanks to its 30-day money-back guarantee.
Best of all, this VPN works with most popular streaming services we tested it with. So you can use it to watch Netflix, Hulu, HBO Max, or anything else that takes your fancy. Perfect if you want a secure PIA alternative for torrenting.
- Great for accessing Netflix, Hulu, and other services abroad
- Strong AES encryption and a kill switch
- No logs policy and based in Sweden
- Works in China
- Best low-cost PIA alternative for torrenting
- Smaller server network
- No WireGuard protocol
PORT FORWARDING:PrivateVPN is a secure VPN with servers in 63 countries. It has a watertight no-logging policy, strong AES-256 encryption, and plenty of privacy features to keep your browsing private. 30-day money-back guarantee.
Read our full PrivateVPN review.
Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS
AtlasVPN is a provider that was launched in 2019. This makes it one of the newest VPNs available on the market. Despite being a relative newcomer, the VPN has quickly gained popularity with consumers. It features the fast WireGuard protocol, reasonably priced subscription plans, and unlimited simultaneous connections.
Apps are available for Windows, Mac, iOS, and Android. Those apps are easy to use and packed with useful features, including a kill switch, split tunneling, ad blocking, malware filtering, and multi-hop connections.
The VPN uses the WireGuard protocol by default, which is great for streaming, torrenting, gaming, making videos calls, and doing any other online activities that require fast speeds. We tested it for streaming and found it to work with multiple Netflix regions, Hulu, iPlayer, HBO Max, Disney Plus, and most other popular international streaming services.
Perhaps the biggest drawback is that the AtlasVPN leaks momentarily during reconnection. So, if you are going to use this VPN to torrent privately, we would recommend pausing your downloads until the VPN is fully re-established. You can ask questions at any time of day thanks to its live chat support, but note that this service is for subscribers only.
One of the best things about AtlasVPN is that you use it on an unlimited number of devices. You can connect all your devices at home, at work, on public wifi, and still share your account with friends and family. You can compare it to PIA yourself using its 30-day money back guarantee.
- Lets you connect an unlimited number of devices
- Robust AES-256 encryption
- Unblocks most streaming platforms
- Fast WireGuard protocol by default
- Fewer advanced features
- Kill switch leaks on reconnection
GREAT SPEEDS:AtlasVPN is a cheap alternative to Private Internet Access that you can use to unblock streaming services and gain online privacy. Fast WireGuard protocol is great for gaming streaming and making video calls privately. Encryption will protect your privacy at home and on public wifi. 30-day money-back guarantee.
Read the full Atlas VPN review.
PIA VPN alternatives – FAQs
Can I get a free VPN alternative to PIA?
Although there are some free VPNs available on the market, these will not be a suitable alternative to Private Internet Access. This is because they lack important features and capabilities that PIA gives you.
Reliable, secure VPNs are few and far between. Trustworthy providers that have a free plan enforce strict bandwidth limits, download limits, and have few server locations to pick from. This makes free VPNs too slow for streaming, gaming, and other data-intensive tasks.
In addition, the vast majority of free VPNs lack encryption, suffer from leaks, have lousy privacy policies, serve ads, and even conceal spyware in their apps. This makes using most of the free VPNs you find in Google searches or app stores a threat to your online privacy and the health of your devices.
If you want to try a VPN for free, without it causing your data to be sold to marketing companies and data brokers, we recommend sticking to the VPNs recommended in this guide because they all have a money-back guarantee. This will let you try a fully unrestricted alternative to PIA, with all the features you need to stay safe online.
Is Private Internet Access a good VPN?
Compared to the vast majority of VPNs available on the market, PIA is actually very good. It is fast, offers a decent choice of servers, uses strong encryption, and has customizable protocols. These traits make it decent for gaining online privacy and security.
The only caveat is that it is based in the US, which is home to the NSA, warrants, and gag orders. This often leads to criticisms from privacy advocates and makes it unsuitable for users who demand the highest levels of privacy for their data and communications.
PIA lacks some of the features you get with similarly priced alternatives. It has no port forwarding, multi-hop, Tor over VPN, or Smart DNS. So, if you want any of these features, you will need to shop elsewhere.
Perhaps the biggest drawback with PIA is that it is not as good for accessing international streaming services as the alternatives in this guide. So, if you particularly want to spoof your IP address to access home streaming platforms on vacation, you may prefer one of our alternatives.
Does PIA have a Chrome extension?
Yes. Private Internet Access has a proxy extension that you can download from the Chrome extension store. It works to block ads and trackers and allows you to proxy to a different location from within your browser.
Note, however, that this proxy extension does not control the VPN client. It is a standalone proxy that does not provide any encryption for your data. As a result, this will provide location spoofing, but not privacy against being tracked by local networks, ISPs, and government agencies.
PIA also has a browser extension for Firefox and Opera, so if you need a proxy for either of these browsers, PIA has you covered.
Does PIA have port forwarding?
No. PIA does not permit port forwarding on any of its servers. This makes it unsuitable for users who want to host game servers, access resources on their home network remotely, or who want to be able to seed torrents.
If you want to do any tasks that require port forwarding, we recommend opting for our alternative PrivateVPN. You can find out more in our guide to the best VPN for port forwarding.