survey sites

Getting paid to give your opinion on stuff seems like easy money – and it is. Survey sites ask people questions about all manner of subjects and pay anything between $0.1 and $5 per survey. The problem is that many only want respondents from certain countries. This is where a virtual private network (VPN) comes in. 

The best VPNs let you choose an IP address from almost anywhere in the world. This allows you to mask your real IP address if you’re traveling abroad and want to continue taking surveys from your country of residence.

This guide will explain how to use a VPN with survey sites, and outline the best VPNs for the job. If you don’t have time to read the full reviews, here’s a quick summary of the the best VPNs for survey sites:

  1. NordVPN: Best VPN for survey sites. Very fast with a massive network of servers around the world. Excellent privacy and security features. Comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee. 
    TIP In our testing we found that the cheapest NordVPN plan (Standard) works perfectly for Survey sites.
  2. Surfshark: Most affordable VPN for survey sites. Provides consistently fast and stable connections, and great for streaming too. 
  3. ExpressVPN: Veteran provider with thousands of servers in a large number of countries. Connections are reliably secure and stable.
  4. CyberGhost: Notably fast and boasts a market-leading server count. Easy-to-use apps make it a good choice for VPN beginners taking surveys. 
  5. PrivateVPN: Straightforward VPN with fast speeds, good security and a friendly interface. Works great with survey sites.
  6. IPVanish: Low cost provider offering top notch security and privacy features, and decent speeds too. 
  7. AtlasVPN: Impressive speeds, stable servers and a high level of security. Allows unlimited simultaneous device connections. 

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The best VPNs for survey sites

We go into much more detail about our testing methodology later in this article. For now, here’s a summary of the selection criteria for choosing the best VPNs for survey sites: 

  • Global network of servers with plenty of options in the US and Europe
  • Fast, stable connections
  • Good value for money
  • Strong digital security and privacy protections
  • Money-back guarantee 
  • Compatible with a variety of devices

Here’s a list of the best VPNs for survey sites:

1. NordVPN

NordVPN Dec 2023

Apps Available:

  • PC
  • Mac
  • IOS
  • Android
  • Linux
  • Background FireTV

Website:  www.NordVPN.com

Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS

NordVPN has thousands of servers in its network, with plenty of choices in all the regions where you’d want to sign up to a survey site. Connections are stable and easily fast enough for focus group video conferencing, for example.

The company prides itself on providing users with a high level of security and privacy. This includes 256-bit AES channel encryption, SHA384 authentication and 3072-bit DHE-RSA key exchange. A no-logs policy ensures your privacy is maintained while connected.  

NordVPN apps are simple to use, and come with a whole host of tools, such as split tunneling, kill switches and obfuscated servers. Additional features include a dark web monitoring service, which scours the dark web for any breaches where your personal data is compromised. 

This service could provide peace of mind when you’re creating accounts for multiple survey sites, some of which may be less secure than others. Similarly useful is the threat protection tool that scans for malware and can prevent you from landing on malicious websites.

Apps are available for Windows, macOS, iOS, Android, Linux, and Amazon Fire TV. You can also install NordVPN on your router, which will protect all of the devices on your home network.

Pros:

  • Servers available in more than 60 countries
  • Fast and reliable connections
  • Strong security and privacy credentials
  • Apps for most devices
  • No-logs policy
  • Offers 24/7 live chat

Cons:

  • Some servers take longer to connect to

Our score:

4.5 out of 5

BEST FOR SURVEY SITES:NordVPN is our top pick. Provides exceptionally high speeds, and a comprehensive choice of servers worldwide. It’ll also keep you safe and secure. Try it risk-free with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Read our full NordVPN review.

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2. Surfshark

Apps Available:

  • PC
  • Mac
  • IOS
  • Android
  • Linux

Website:  www.Surfshark.com

Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS

Surfshark is a lightweight and affordable VPN that should appeal to survey site users on a budget. It has thousands of servers to choose from and promises some of the fastest speeds on the market. 

Features include both an antivirus and an alert service that lets you know if your personal data has been leaked online. There’s also a kill switch, and options for split tunneling and changing the VPN protocol. 

Surshark provides a list of double VPN servers and static IP servers. The latter means you can use the same server each time if you want to keep the same IP address while using particular survey sites. 

Security is tight, with 256-bit AES encryption, a SHA512 authentication hash and 2048-bit DHE-RSA key exchange. While you’re using the VPN, Surfshark does not collect IP addresses, browsing history, or other session information.

Subscribers are allowed to connect as many devices as they want simultaneously, which is great if you’re in a houseshare. Apps are available for Windows, macOS, iOS, Linux, Android, and Amazon Fire TV. You can also install Surfshark on compatible home routers.

Pros:

  • Fast and reliable speeds
  • Very speedy servers
  • Strong security and privacy credentials
  • Allows unlimited devices
  • Very affordable

Cons:

  • Occasional slow server

Our score:

4.5 out of 5

BEST LOW-COST OPTION:A budget VPN that’s great for survey sites. Offers fast speeds and secure, private connections. Comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Read our full Surfshark review.

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3. ExpressVPN

ExpressVPN

Apps Available:

  • PC
  • Mac
  • IOS
  • Android
  • Linux

Website:  www.ExpressVPN.com

Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS

ExpressVPN combines easy-to-use apps with powerful security and privacy features. It also has an enormous network of servers, making it a great all-round option for survey sites.

It’s one of the fastest VPNs we’ve tested, primarily due to its homegrown Lightway protocol. While connected, you’ll be able to stream 4K content or play demanding online games with no lag or buffering.

ExpressVPN is able to access a wide range of streaming services, including Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, Sky TV, Disney+, and HBO Max. If you’re using a device that doesn’t support VPN apps, you can use ExpressVPN’s smart DNS proxy service. This allows you to replace your default DNS server with an ExpressVPN DNS server.

The company is renowned for cutting-edge security, and you can expect 256-bit AES channel strong encryption, 4096-bit DHE-RSA keys, and SHA512 hash authentication. ExpressVPN doesn’t keep any logs that could be used to identify you and, in any event, its servers’ memory is wiped on every reboot. External audits from PwC have confirmed the company’s compliance with its privacy claims. 

Sleek apps are available for Windows, macOS, iOS, Android, Amazon Fire TV, and Linux. ExpressVPN even makes some for certain routers, so you can protect all the devices on your home network at once. 

Pros:

  • High-speed servers in 94 countries
  • Solid speeds and unlimited bandwidth
  • Top-notch security features and a no-logs policy
  • Apps are intuitive and easy to use

Cons:

  • Doesn’t allow as much customization as some rivals
  • Slightly more pricey than other services

Our score:

4.5 out of 5

HIGHLY VERSATILE:ExpressVPN is a great choice for survey sites. It’s trustworthy, fast and has servers virtually everywhere. There’s even a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Read our full ExpressVPN review.

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4. CyberGhost

Apps Available:

  • PC
  • Mac
  • IOS
  • Android
  • Linux

Website:  www.Cyberghost.com

Money-back guarantee: 45 DAYS

CyberGhost has a vast network of servers in all the countries you need to access reputable survey sites. These consistently provide stable connections and excellent speeds. You can see the current load of each server, which makes it easy to find the fastest one in a particular region.  

Once connected, you should be able to stream 4K content or take part in a focus group conference call with no lag or buffering. CyberGhost can access a range of streaming services, including Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, and BBC iPlayer. If gaming is more your thing, CyberGhost provides dedicated servers for just that purpose. 

The company doesn’t collect any personal identifiable information while you use its services. It protects your internet traffic using 256-bit AES/ChaCha20 encryption, 2,048-bit RSA keys and SHA256 authentication. 

Subscribers can connect up to seven devices simultaneously, which is better than the average five or six. Well-designed apps are available for Windows, MacOS, Linux, iOS, Android, and Amazon Fire TV. These all prevent DNS, IPv6, and WebRTC leaks, and come with kill switches to stop the flow of data if the VPN connection drops.

Pros:

  • Very good speeds
  • Use up to seven devices simultaneously
  • Zero logs and robust encryption
  • Robust encryption

Cons:

  • No router support
  • Parent company has a poor record on privacy

Our score:

4.5 out of 5

THOUSANDS OF SERVERS:CyberGhost is simple to use. It’s impressively fast and provides robust privacy and security by default. You can try it for free with a 45-day money-back guarantee.

Read our full CyberGhost VPN review.

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5. PrivateVPN

PrivateVPN

Apps Available:

  • PC
  • Mac
  • IOS
  • Android
  • Linux

Website:  www.PrivateVPN.com

Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS

PrivateVPN has a relatively small server network compared to its competitors. Nevertheless, it still manages to cover a wide range of countries from which survey sites draw their respondents. 

Connection speeds are very good, and you should be able to stream 4K video and make video calls with no lag or buffering. You can add fast servers to a favorite list to make subsequent connections quicker. This can be useful if you are flitting between survey sites in different countries.   

PrivateVPN works well with streaming services, including Amazon Prime Video, Hulu, BBC iPlayer, ITV Hub, and Disney+. If you need any help with accessing different services – or with anything else – the company is fairly unusual in that it offers remote control support.

PrivateVPN acts as its own server host and ISP, which lessens the ability of third parties to access your data. There are various ways to change the level of protection given to your data, with less protection tending to result in faster speeds.

For example, you can choose between 128-bit or 256-bit encryption different protocol options, whether to enable a kill switch, and also whether to enable protection against IPv6 leaks and DNS leaks.

Subscribers can connect up to ten devices to connect simultaneously. Straightforward apps are available for Windows, Mac, iOS, Android and Linux. Alternatively, PrivateVPN can be manually configured with compatible routers. 

Pros:

  • Fast and reliable servers provide consistent connections
  • Zero-logs provider
  • Use up to six devices simultaneously

Cons:

  • Small number of servers to choose from
  • Live chat is not around the clock

Our score:

4.5 out of 5

STRONG ON PRIVACY:PrivateVPN has a strong commitment to privacy and the infrastructure to maintain it. Offers fast connections worldwide and 30-day money-back guarantee.

Read our full PrivateVPN review.

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6. IPVanish

IPVanish

Apps Available:

  • PC
  • Mac
  • IOS
  • Android
  • Linux

Website:  www.IPVanish.com

Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS

IPVanish is a veteran provider with a decent global spread of servers. It’s one of the fastest VPNs available, with speeds that can support both video conferencing and streaming 4K content.

Finding servers in a specific country where a survey site operates is easy – you can either search by region or choose from a map. Servers can also be sorted by city, ping time, and load.

Features include a kill switch, that halts internet traffic should the VPN connection unexpectedly drop; and split tunneling, which allows you to select which apps connect with the VPN and which use a direct, unencrypted connection.

IPVanish keeps no traffic or usage logs on its customers, and its apps have built-in DNS and IPv6 leak protection. The company uses 256-bit encryption on the Wireguard protocol by default, together with SHA512 authentication, and a DHE-RSA 2048 key exchange.

IPVanish allows unlimited device connections on each account, so it’s a good option for larger households. Apps are available for Windows, macOS, iOS, Android, ChromeOS, and Fire TV. You can manually configure IPVanish on a compatible router if you want to protect devices that don’t support VPN apps. 

Pros:

  • Impressive speeds and reliable connections
  • Handles simultaneous connections well

Cons:

  • Based in the US
  • Doesn’t have a Linux app
  • Isn’t the best for streaming

Our score:

4 out of 5

NO CONNECTION LIMIT:IPVanish has a large network of company-owned servers and offers subscribers high standards of privacy. You can try it for free with a 30-day money-back guarantee.

Read our full IPVanish review.

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7. AtlasVPN

AtlasVPN

Apps Available:

  • PC
  • Mac
  • IOS
  • Android
  • Linux
  • Background FireTV

Website:  www.atlasvpn.com

Money-back guarantee: 30 DAYS

AtlasVPN is a relatively new provider that offers decent speeds and an affordable monthly subscription fee. It doesn’t have the large server network of other providers, but there are enough to cover the main countries where survey sites operate. 

You can expect to be able to stream HD video, though video conferencing calls can be more problematic. If all you need to do is fill out online surveys, then this isn’t an issue as these sorts of speeds aren’t necessary.

Features include a tracker blocker that stops persistent cookies being stored in your browser, a data breach monitor that sends you an alert if your personal information has been compromised in a data breach, and a kill switch so that you don’t unintentionally remain connected to the internet if the VPN connection drops out. 

Atlas VPN has a no-logs policy, AES-256-bit or ChaCha20 channel encryption, SHA-384 or Poly1305 authentication, and BLAKE2s for hashing. 

Subscribers can connect an unlimited number of devices on a single account, which makes AtlasVPN a good choice if you want to split the bill with others. Easy-to-use apps are available for Windows, iOS, Android, macOS, Linux, and Amazon Fire TV. 

Pros:

  • Fast and reliable speeds
  • Unlimited connection limit

Cons:

  • No Linux or router support
  • Small number of servers vs other providers

Our score:

4 out of 5

HIGH SPEEDS:AtlasVPN is both fast and affordable. Unlimited device connections make it a great choice for large households. Try it for free with a 30-day money-back guarantee. 

Read our full review of AtlasVPN.

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Can I use a free VPN for survey sites?

Yes, but it might prove very frustrating – and could put your security at risk. Free VPNs tend to have a poor user-to-server ratio, with demand for protected connections far outstripping the supply of available servers. The result is that users either have to queue for connections, or accept dramatic speed reductions. This could hamper your ability to fill surveys in quickly and efficiently.

Free VPNs’ reliance on advertising – rather than paid subscriptions – means they have less money sloshing about to spend on privacy and security. None of the free VPN apps on Google Play offer what we consider to be a full set of safety features. Trackers are common, and most have some kind of logging policy. Some even sell your data to third parties or harbor malware. 

How do I use a VPN with survey sites?

Here’s how to use a VPN with survey sites:

  1. Get online and sign up for a VPN – we recommend NordVPN. It comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee, so there’s no risk involved.
  2. Download and install the appropriate version for your device.
  3. Select – and connect to – a server in a country where the survey site of choice is looking for participants. For example, you will need to connect to an American server for a US IP address. 
  4. Take a survey with your chosen survey site and start earning.
  5. If you’re having any issues, we recommend that you try clearing your cookies on your browser. If problems persist, reach out to your VPNs support team.

What are the risks of survey sites?

There are several verified (and safe) survey websites out there, but there are just as many that exist to collect user data for questionable reasons. There are a number of cybersecurity risks to filling in surveys on these untrusted platforms, including fraud and identity theft

We suggest never submitting your personal information on a survey platform that isn’t well-reviewed and verified. Before registering and taking part, look at reviews online and ensure that other people haven’t been scammed. Where possible, we also suggest refraining from sharing sensitive information on any survey sites incase it gets into the wrong hands. 

Methodology: How we found the best VPNs for survey sites

Carrying out surveys online is a numbers game – you need to do a lot of them to make it worthwhile. Amongst other things, a VPN can help you access additional sites by allowing you to bypass imposed geo-restrictions. To find the most useful VPNs for survey sites, we evaluated them against the following criteria:

  • Speed: You’ll never be able to make much money if your connection speed is slow. That’s why we only recommend VPNs that score highly in our most recent speed tests
  • Network size and scope: As some survey sites are geo-restricted, it’s important that VPNs are well represented in countries where survey sites operate. Having servers in a particular region helps ensure fast, consistent speeds, too. 
  • Value for money: Online surveys don’t tend to pay much per job, so it’s essential that the additional cost of a VPN subscription is justified. We only recommend VPNs that are worth what they charge. We make sure they all come with 30-day money-back guarantees, and we often have discount coupons available if you’d like to try them at a reduced rate.
  • Security: We have high standards when it comes to security. We expect VPNs to all have effectively uncrackable encryption as well as features like kill switches, perfect forward secrecy, leak protection and more. These are essential if you’re completing surveys using insecure public wi-fi hotspots.
  • Ease of use: There’s little point paying for a VPN if it’s difficult and time-consuming to use. We only recommend those with sleek, intuitive apps that allow connections with a single click.
  • Compatible with a variety of devices: Most people use survey sites as a way to get additional income, and will carry out surveys in multiple locations. We ensure that our chosen VPNs are compatible with a wide range of devices.
  • Privacy: We check VPNs’ logging policies to ensure they don’t collect any personally identifiable information. Those that can’t adequately protect your privacy are rejected.

FAQs: Best VPNs for survey sites

Can I use a VPN for Swagbucks?

Yes, you can. In fact, if you’re not resident in one of the countries below, you’ll have to. Swagbucks participants must come from one of the following 11 countries: US, Ireland, France, Germany, Australia, New Zealand, India, Canada, Spain, Portugal, and the UK. If you live elsewhere, you’ll need to use a VPN to connect to a server in one of these countries before logging in to Swagbucks

What is the best survey paying site?

There are plenty of valid survey sites out there, it’s just a matter of finding them. We’ve selected some of the best in terms of both the financial reward offered to surveyees and the company’s reputation. After all, there’s little point spending time answering questions if you then struggle to get paid for it. 

  • Branded Surveys: Well-regarded site where you can earn between $0.5 and $5 per survey.
  • Swagbucks: One of the largest survey sites. Pays approximately $1 per survey.
  • Newvistalive: Online research community that pays $1 per survey.
  • Toluna: International opinion website paying between $0.2 and $9 per survey.
  • i-Say (IPSOS): Multinational market research organization. Pays equivalent of $1 per survey.
  • OnePoll: UK/US survey site that pays between $0.1 and $1 per survey.
  • Opinion Outpost: US-based market research company. Pays <$0.5 per survey.
  • Triaba Panel: Has survey panels in 86 countries, and pays between $0.15 and $2.50 per survey 
  • InboxDollars:  US-based site paying between $0.02 and $5 for surveys.

Can you really earn money from surveys?

Survey sites provide a way for market research organizations to capture data about people’s opinions. This can be on anything from perfume to dishwasher tablets. The aggregate data is sold to companies who want information about their customer base. 

Signing up to a survey site gets you added to their panel. When a relevant survey is available, they’ll contact you for your opinion. Most initially pay in points, which can be exchanged for cash or rewards once a certain threshold is reached.