CactusVPN 2022 extensive review: Generally good but has a few drawbacks

Ruheni Mathenge Last updated: September 21, 2022 Read time: 11 minutes Disclosure
Facts checked by Abeerah Hashim

A low-cost VPN service with premium features. Good for beginners.

CactusVPN is a Moldova-based VPN provider that offers reliable services. It will protect your data and anonymize your online activities through its decent network of 39 servers in 22 countries. However, the network is relatively small compared to larger VPNs.

The VPN has valuable features such as dependable unblocking capabilities, smart DNS, no-logs policy, 30-day money-back guarantee, and more. In addition, CactusVPN offers apps for all major devices that are easy to set up and use.

But is it a worthy VPN to consider? In this CactusVPN review, I’ll look at different aspects, including performance, pricing, security, customer support, privacy, and much more.

CactusVPN 1-minute summary

Are you short on time? These are some of the things you can expect about CactusVPN:

  • Industry-standard security – Protects your connections with military-grade encryption alongside other features such as a kill switch, multiple protocols, etc.
  • Unblocked streaming sites – Bypass geographic restrictions with the SmartDNS feature to give you access to popular websites and apps. 
  • Zero-logs policy – The provider claims to follow a no-logs policy strictly, but it’s unclear if your data is entirely safe. 
  • Slow speeds – It has a few servers, so your connection might slow down due to congestion. However, you can try a nearby server for improved speeds.
  • Reasonably priced – This is one of the most affordable VPNs available. In addition, its monthly rates are among the lowest.

Pros and cons

Here are some of the CactusVPN solid and weak suits.

Pros:

  • Advanced security and privacy
  • Unblocks Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Amazon Prime Video
  • It doesn’t keep logs
  • It offers a kill switch
  • Easy to use apps
  • Reliable customer support

Cons:

  • Slow speeds on some servers
  • Small server network
  • No WebRTC or IPv6 leak protection

Main features at a glance

Lowest price  $3.95
Logging policy  Strict no-logs 
Server network  39 servers in 22 countries 
Devices per subscription  Unlimited 
Kill switch  Yes 
Money-back guarantee  30 days 

Speed

Is CactusVPN fast? This is one of the slowest VPNs I have tested lately. For example, my connection kept discontinuing because of low speeds and high ping when playing popular games like Rocket League. Moreover, it wasn’t easy to watch YouTube videos and read online articles with delays of up to 30 seconds.

I tested some of the servers with both Wi-Fi and Ethernet connections. The speed slowed down significantly when using distant servers but was good enough for basic browsing. For example, I couldn’t do anything when I connected to Indian and Hong Kong servers. Even streaming YouTube videos was a struggle because of the excessive buffering.

Download speed reduction  Upload speed reduction  Ping time  Average time to connect  Sites unblocked successfully 
CactusVPN  63% 55% 478ms 32 seconds  Hulu, YouTube, BBC iPlayer
ExpressVPN  12% 16% 16ms 5 seconds Netflix, Disney+, CBS, ABC, Hotstar
SurfShark  22% 33% 41ms 15 seconds  Netflix, Peacock TV, Fox Sports Go, Amazon Prime Video
NordVPN 19% 21% 19ms 9 seconds  YouTube TV, Sling TV, HBO Max, BritBox, Paramount Plus

CactusVPN servers

CactusVPN servers