Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) are an invaluable security tool for modern web users, and that applies to the Netherlands as much as anywhere else. And there are a number of reasons for this.
For one thing, while government censorship isn’t a pressing issue in Holland, corporate censorship can be. Companies like Netflix hide content away from customers in certain countries via “geo-blockers.” Virtual Private Networks can render these barriers obsolete.
There may also be surveillance issues related to P2P downloads as well. So if you regularly torrent music, videos, or software, encrypting your transfers is a sensible option.
Moreover, the Netherlands is part of a broad surveillance network called the “14 Eyes.” This includes countries like the UK and USA which are known to spy on citizens of other nations. By anonymizing your identity, VPNs can render you invisible to state agencies.
How we rate Virtual Private Networks for Dutch web users
We try to take a systematic approach to rating Virtual Private Networks. Admittedly, it’s not an exact science, and some judgment calls are needed. But here’s a quick rundown of the criteria we use:
- Flexibility – good Virtual Private Networks provide as many connections as possible, along with features like split tunneling, proxies, TOR, and plenty of apps.
- Value – an expensive provider is a bad one as far as we’re concerned. Quality and value can easily pair up when it comes to online privacy.
- Security – the number one consideration. We look for military-grade encryption, leak protection, and advanced protocols. And we don’t compromise.
- Privacy – our favorite providers tend to be located outside the “14 eyes” surveillance network and logging is a major no-no.
- Speed – good VPNs have to be super fast, and deliver good speeds whether you are browsing social media, using P2P, or streaming Netflix.
Introducing our choices for the best VPN for the Netherlands
No time to read? Here are our best VPNs:
1. NordVPN ‣
Pricing: $6.99 month for 1 year
Features: Crypto payments supported, huge server network, 256-bit encryption, 6 simultaneous devices, no logs policy, kill switch, P2P supported, unblocks Netflix, supports TOR, DoubleVPN system for added protection, 30-day money-back guarantee
NordVPN is one of the world’s finest Virtual Private Networks and, to be honest, it only marginally missed out on being named the best VPN for the Netherlands.
Boasting thousands of servers, including plenty in the Netherlands and nearby countries, NordVPN scores very highly when it comes to speed. And because it supports P2P and unblocks platforms like Netflix, this speed can come in really handy. If you love movies and TV and need to work around geo-blockers, this is one of the best providers around.
Additionally, NordVPN offers industry-leading privacy and security features. 256-bit AES encryption and the full range of protocols combines with DoubleVPN technology, DNS leak protection, and the option to run TOR through NordVPN – creating an impenetrable layer of protection.
You can connect 6 devices at one time which is very competitive, and should be more than enough for most families, and the company’s apps include options for web browsers, smartphones, tablets, laptops, and routers.
So, what made us choose a competitor as our number one pick? Well, while NordVPN is fast, our preferred provider is even speedier. And that’s basically it. As we noted earlier, speed matters, and in this case, it’s the only dividing line we could find.
Location: British Virgin Islands
Pricing: $1.99/month for 2 years
Features: speedy connection for video viewing, unlimited simultaneous connections, commitment to privacy and security
What’s so special about the British Virgin Islands? Well, for one thing, ExpressVPN is also located there. This is due to the fact that this country is extremely privacy-friendly as it has no data retention laws. This service surely takes advantage of that and even though it’s a newcomer to the best of VPN top lists, Surfshark VPN delivers all of the features we are looking for.
Dutch web users will appreciate the 256-bit encryption provided, along with OpenVPN-based protocols, IPv6, DNS, and WebRTC leak protection, and the rigorous no-logging policy. This is more than enough to protect your data whether you’re checking social media or purchasing items online.
Users can connect as many devices as they choose – which makes Surfshark appealing for both families and small businesses. And there are neat extras like Camouflage and NoBorders modes – these scramble your traffic and make it more difficult to detect.
The customer support is excellent as well and is available 24/7 via live chat. If you decide to try it out it has a free trial and a two-year plan looks like a real bargain at $1.99, one of the lowest prices we’ve seen.
3. CyberGhost ‣
Pricing: $5.99 month for 1 year
Features: Over 60 servers in the Netherlands and over 3000 worldwide, 256 bit AES encryption, no logs, kill switch, DNS leak protection, apps for services like FireTV, 45-day money-back guarantee, up to 7 simultaneous device connections
Romanian VPN CyberGhost is right up there with NordVPN and our pick for the best VPN for the Netherlands but doesn’t quite make the cut. Still, it’s a very solid provider that Dutch privacy fans need to know about.
On the encryption side, 256-bit AES technology is as good as it currently gets, and you’ll receive excellent DNS leak protection, providing complete IP address anonymization. So the company’s phantom mascot isn’t a joke: CyberGhost really does turn users into digital “ghosts.”
The company also opens up plenty of restricted services. Users shouldn’t have any trouble working around Netflix geo-blocks, and speeds are very good thanks to CyberGhost’s huge global server network. And if you prefer to stream over smart TVs, there’s Amazon FireTV support too.
Families will appreciate the ability to install the client on as many as 7 different devices. So everyone in the household can enjoy a high level of security. And the 45-day money-back guarantee is extremely generous by the standards of the industry.
Where does CyberGhost fall down? Well, the prices are a little expensive for some packages (although discounts make it very affordable at times). And speeds vary from lightning quick to stodgy. That’s acceptable for good VPNs, but it’s not the case with our number one pick, as we’ll soon see.
4. VyprVPN ‣
Pricing: $5.00 month for 1 year ($5 with discounts)
Features: No third-party apps or servers, 256-bit encryption, independent audits, unlimited bandwidth, NAT firewalls included, 24/7 support, global servers including one in Amsterdam
Swiss VPN VyprVPN is one of the most well-known companies in our list, and also one of the more reliable. Famed for its high speeds, it delivers excellent performance for Netflix fans and torrenters, steamrolling through geo-blocks with incredible ease.
The client is very well-designed and comes in a variety of forms, including versions for smartphones, TVs, routers, and computers. And there are some unique additions, such as the Chameleon tool, which hides the fact that users are running Virtual Private Networks. So if you want to stay anonymous, that should be easy to arrange.
So, why haven’t we chosen VyprVPN as our best VPN for the Netherlands? For one thing, it’s fast, but not lightning quick like our champion. And while the no-logs policy is basically sound, some experts have questioned the ethics of the provider’s parent company Golden Frog. Apparently, some users have had their service suspended due to “copyright infringements” – presumably related to torrenting. And VyprVPN is supposed to welcome P2P, so there’s some room for skepticism here.
5. ExpressVPN ‣
Location: British Virgin Islands
Pricing: $8.32 month for 1 year
Features: Crypto payments, 256-bit encryption, apps for all platforms, P2P supported, unblocks Netflix reliably, browser extensions, 24/7 live chat support, flexible split tunneling, presence in 94 countries, zero-knowledge DNS, 3 simultaneous devices
Our pick for the best VPN for the Netherlands is easy: ExpressVPN. Based in the British Virgin Islands, ExpressVPN is safely outside the extended 14-eyes surveillance network. And with 256-bit encryption, zero-knowledge DNS, OpenVPN-based protocols, and anonymous payments via cryptocurrency, this is a seriously secure service.
It balances a high level of security with exactly what ordinary Dutch users are looking for. ExpressVPN is P2P-friendly, offering fast servers for torrenters and confidence that no-one will be watching your download history. And it is the best VPN for unblocking services like Netflix we’ve ever seen. So it should broaden your entertainment options considerably.
Add in 24/7 live chat support, the option to apply split-tunneling to speed up local internet access and a fully risk-free free trial, and there are very few weak spots in the ExpressVPN package. That’s why we recommend it as the best VPN for the Netherlands, so download it and see what you think.
If you’re in The Netherlands, which of these VPNs have you used before? Did we miss any great VPNs for The Netherlands? Let us know in the comments below.