Online censorship has been on the rise in Turkey with the country’s growing role in the Syrian conflict. Turkey has recently used the motive of curbing “online disinformation” on February 27, 2020, following an attack on Turkish troops in Idlib. All major social media sites, including Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube, have been blocked. To access them, you will need a VPN service.
Yet there are more reasons to get a VPN in Turkey. For starters, the country has been jailing journalists and political activists, so protecting your privacy is a good idea.
This article will look at seven different VPNs that can allow you to have more internet freedom in Turkey. We’ll compare the seven VPNs based on the following criteria:
- Privacy and security
- Combination of price and features
- Unblocking ability
No time to read? Here are our best VPNs:
- Location: Panama
- Pricing: starts at $3.49 per month
- Features: Double VPN, a kill switch, DNS leak protection, strict no-logging policy
Panama is outside the 5/9/14 Eyes and doesn’t have data retention laws. You don’t have to worry about governmental surveillance or privacy leaks. NordVPN also has state-of-the-art security protocols.
What we like about NordVPN is that the apps are very customizable and you can automatize most things. This makes it a great choice for beginners and experts alike. We also found it was one of the easiest VPNs to use for unblocking content on streaming services. It works on all the major platforms like Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Hulu.
It also worked for bypassing censored content, as the privacy features allowed us to stay anonymous. This makes it ideal for the political environment in Turkey right now. Overall, we felt like NordVPN was a safe bet if your goal is to increase privacy and security. Because of its top-grade security, it is definitely one of the best VPNs for Turkey.
2. Surfshark VPN
- Location: British Virgin Islands
- Price: starts at $1.99/month
- Features: speedy connection for video viewing, unlimited simultaneous connections, commitment to privacy and security
Surfshark VPN operates a moderate network of 1000+ high-speed servers across 60+ countries, including Turkey. With one subscription this provider allows users to connect an unlimited number of devices at one time.
To keep you safe it has AES-256 encryption, OpenVPN and IKEv2 support, a strict no-logs policy, and a kill switch to protect you if your connection to a VPN server cuts out. Plus, you get a built-in ad, tracker, and malware blocker to shield your device from dangerous cyber threats.
This VPN service is compatible with all major platforms and you can try it risk-free with its 30-day money-back guarantee.
- Location: British Virgin Islands
- Price: starts at $6.67 per month
- Features: kill switch, split tunneling, military-grade encryption, instant setup, 24/7 customer service
ExpressVPN is one of the top VPNs available and one of the best VPNs for Turkey. The service offers fast connection speeds, easy-to-use applications, and some of the best security and privacy of any VPN provider. The British Virgin Islands (ExpressVPN’s base) are outside the 5/9/14-Eyes, which also helps enhance the service’s privacy.
Advanced users will be able to customize their security and privacy features, but beginners can have security automatically optimized. We tested ExpressVPN with major streaming services like Netflix and Hulu and had no trouble accessing blocked content. The biggest drawback of ExpressVPN is its price tag, but the performance is at the top of its class.
- Location: Romania
- Price: starts at $2.75 per month
- Features: A kill-switch, 256-bit encryption, a no-logging policy, 5,000+ servers, 7-day free trial
Another one of the best VPNs for Turkey. Romania is another country that is privacy-focused. Although CyberGhost has no server locations in Turkey, they have servers in Greece and Bulgaria.
They also have plenty of servers in the US. It’s a good choice for circumventing geographic and governmental restrictions, and the connection speeds are decent. CyberGhost also offers strong security features. They aren’t quite as strong as those offered by ExpressVPN or NordVPN, but they’re still some of the best on the market.
CyberGhost is also less expensive. If you want a service that can unblock as well as ExpressVPN at a lower cost, CyberGhost is a good choice. There is also a risk-free trial and a 45-day money-back guarantee, so you can test it out to see if you like it.
- Location: Sweden
- Price: starts at $1.89 per month
- Features: minimal logs, encryption with AES-256, public WiFi protection, a kill switch, 6 simultaneous connections
Sweden is one of the more privacy-friendly countries in Europe, so PrivateVPN chose an excellent place to set up headquarters. The network only has one server location in Turkey, but we tried it out and it performed better than we expected. We were able to unblock Netflix content without any trouble. We also like the price.
One thing we like is that you can choose between 128 and 256-bit encryption. Sometimes we want speed and sometimes we want top-notch security. Overall, you get a lot of the same security features as more expensive competitors like ExpressVPN, but you won’t get all the bells and whistles.
- Location: Switzerland
- Price: starts at $2.71 per month
- Features: zero-knowledge DNS, no-logging policy, encryption with AES-256, Chameleon protocol
Switzerland is another country known for its favorable privacy stance. VyprVPN has some of the best security, especially if you opt for the more expensive version. This comes with the Chameleon protocol, which gives you a way around even the toughest firewalls. This is what you want if you’re in Turkey as they have been cracking down on VPN usage. We found that VyprVPN worked well for unblocking US streaming content, but it’s not that great for torrenting (due to the service’s Terms of Service). Overall, VyprVPN offers a great amount of anonymity at a reasonable price.
- Location: United States
- Price: starts at $4.17 per month
- Features: 24/7 live support, zero-logging policy, leak protection
TorGuard claims to be 100% private. However, the US isn’t known for valuing privacy, so it’s uncertain whether they can maintain their 100% privacy guarantee in the long-term. That said, TorGuard has many useful privacy and security features like a no-logging policy, DNS leak protection, AES-256 encryption, and more.
The biggest drawback we saw was that TorGuard didn’t let us unblock all the streaming content we wanted. It worked better if we used a dedicated IP address, but this costs extra. TorGuard also had decent connection speeds, but we’ve seen better. While TorGuard has apps for Windows, macOS, Android and iOS, the apps for harder to set up than the apps for ExpressVPN and NordVPN.
The price is somewhere in the middle. We found TorGuard to be a good choice if your concern is securing your online activity, but less ideal if your goal is unblocking content.
We found that NordVPN was the best VPN for Turkey. It has great security features and works the best for bypassing geographic restrictions and censorship. VyprVPN is a good budget option. The Chameleon protocol adds a welcomed layer of encryption. In our opinion, VyprVPN is the best VPN for Turkey if you’re on a budget.
If you’re in Turkey, which of these VPNs have you used before? Did we miss any great VPNs for Turkey? Let us know in the comments below.