PrivadoVPN Review: Is It Worth Your Money in 2024?

Ruheni Mathenge  - Streaming Expert
Last updated: March 11, 2024
Read time: 21 minutes
Facts checked by Abeerah Hashim

As a whole, PrivadoVPN offers a fairly good value for money. However, there are better VPN services on the market.

There are so many VPN providers on the internet today that less popular options like PrivadoVPN hardly get a mention. Notably, their low popularity often has little to do with their efficiency. To determine whether PrivadoVPN is one of the good ones, we decided to thoroughly review everything about it, including its features and functions.

Founded in 2019 and based in Switzerland, PrivadoVPN focuses on security and privacy, which are the basic elements of any reliable VPN provider. Also, the VPN features OpenVPN and IKEv2, both connection protocols that drive efficiency.

No doubt, there is more about PrivadoVPN beyond its key features. Rest assured. Our PrivadoVPN review will unpack the VPN provider and give you unbiased insight into what to expect from the software.

PrivadoVPN summary

Considering its excellent features, this Swiss-based VPN provider offers reliable and trustworthy services. Unfortunately, the VPN collects some user data, but only for diagnostic and operation purposes, which is better than most of its competitors. Thankfully, the VPN has robust encryption and supports the secure IKEv2 and OpenVPN tunneling protocols, among other dependable security features.

In addition, the VPN service offers decent speeds on most servers and user-friendly client apps. However, its customer support isn’t timely and does not always answer your inquiries. Also, its website offers little information and cannot unblock many streaming platforms. PrivadoVPN is a moderate VPN because its services are neither awful nor better than its top-tier competitors like ExpressVPN.

A quick look at PrivadoVPN

Key features

Server network325 servers in 47 countries
Data-logging policyQuestionable
ProtocolsIKEv2, OpenVPN
Encryption type256-bit AES
Kill switchYes
Unblocks streaming appsYes (some)
Torrenting supportYes
Simultaneous connections10
Starting price$1.99/month
Money-back guarantee30 days
Free plan Yes
Customer supportEmail ticketing system
CompatibilityAndroid, iOS, Windows, and Mac
  • Prevents data leak in case of disconnection
  • Good privacy and logging policy
  • Secure and fast VPN protocols
  • Ad blocker and threat protection
  • Good streaming performance
  • Kill switch is only active in Desktop apps
  • Wireguard protocol is absent
  • No evidence it works in China

PrivadoVPN speed test

Gone are those days when privacy and security are all you demand from a VPN. Today, speed is a vital factor to consider when choosing a VPN. Why consider speed? Technological advancements mean people do more things online today, including playing games, watching videos, and downloading torrents.

Generally, internet service providers (ISPs) limit the download speed for torrents because they know what their users are doing. However, a VPN ensures that an ISP can’t snoop, neutralizing its power to limit torrent downloads. Besides preventing ISPs from messing with your downloads, a VPN boosts your internet speed, thus enhancing streaming, gaming, and torrenting.

Understanding the importance of speed, we decided to perform a speed test to ensure an honest review of PrivadoVPN.

Speed without a VPN

Before testing the speed of PrivadoVPN, we determined our base internet speed. Our base speed was our benchmark to see how the VPN affects internet speed.  

Download speed (Mbps)Upload speed (Mbps)Latency (ms)

Speed on a local server (paid version)

It’s worth mentioning that a VPN slows down your internet connection because there are multiple steps between the internet and your device. So, it is not unusual for your internet speed to reduce after connecting to a VPN. Here are the speed test results for when we connected to a paid PrivadoVPN near our location.

Download speed (Mbps)Upload speed (Mbps)Latency (ms)

We found that the download speed decreased, which was bound to happen. As you can see, the decrease in the download speed is small when using a local server. The most plausible explanation for this minimal drop is that there is a short distance between your device and the server. So, data packets take minimal time to travel.

However, the upload speed went up. The speed increased because the VPN bypassed the ISP’s throttling of the internet speed. Notably, the latency (delay) dropped slightly, showing that our connection improved after connecting to the VPN server.

Speed on a distant server (paid version)

You may need to connect to a distant server to unblock a streaming platform. Therefore, your VPN should be able to maintain a decent speed to ensure there is no buffering issue. A remote server is typically slower because of the long distance between your device and the server. Our results reveal as much.

Download speed (Mbps)Upload speed (Mbps)Latency (ms)

Expectedly, we detected a vast decrease in download and upload speeds because of the long distance our data packets traveled from our device to the server. Also, the latency increased substantially, signaling a poorer internet connection.

Nevertheless, in our experience, these results still produced a decent streaming performance.

Speed on a local server (free version)

PrivadoVPN offers free and subscription-based versions. Ideally, we expected the subscription-based version to provide faster speeds than the free version, but we still needed to know how wide the difference is.

Therefore, we decided to review PrivadoVPN’s free service too. We maintained the same base speed we used for the subscription version.

Download speed (Mbps)Upload speed (Mbps)Latency (ms)

When we tested the free version’s speed on a local server, we found a significant drop in the download and upload speeds. Also, the latency went up.

Speed on a distant server (free version)

We repeated the speed test on a free version of PrivadoVPN, but we used a distant server. Below are our results of connecting to a PrivadoVPN distant server on the free version.

Download speed (Mbps)Upload speed (Mbps)Latency (ms)

Unsurprisingly, the distant server’s speeds (download and upload) were even much slower. The latency also jumped up. While testing the streaming capacity, there was a lot of buffering, making it unsuitable for streaming. You must opt for the paid version for decent streaming performance, especially if you plan to use free movie streaming sites because you need extra security features on top of VPN protection on such sites.

So, is PrivadoVPN fast enough?

PrivadoVPN is not the fastest VPN we’ve used, but it did not perform poorly. As our results show, it held its own. During our tests, we selected the faster protocol, IKEv2, instead of letting the VPN choose for us. Overall, the result was a decent speed.

Unlimited bandwidth

PrivadoVPN does not limit bandwidth usage on the subscription-based version. However, it restricts users of the free version to 10GB of data every 30 days.

PrivadoVPN security features

PrivadoVPN packs many security and privacy features that contribute to providing safe online activity. We will unpack all of the features in our unbiased review of PrivadoVPN below:


PrivadoVPN boasts multiple encryption protocols you can count on for great speed and security. OpenVPN and IKEv2 are two of the leading encryption protocols in the industry. Both strike a good balance between speed and safety. Generally, the IKEv2 protocol is more stable and faster than OpenVPN, thanks to an auto-connect feature that boosts security and ease of use.

However, OpenVPN also has a significant advantage; it uses a TCP port 443, making it easier to mask itself as regular internet traffic. This deception helps the protocol evade detection by firewalls and filters. Therefore, it is harder to be blocked by sysadmins and stopped by a firewall.

Despite these differences, OpenVPN and IKEv2 are more similar than they are different, making it challenging to select one over the other.

It’s good that you don’t have to face such a dilemma with PrivadoVPN, thanks to its ‘Automatic‘ setting, which chooses the best protocol for your network during selection.

Additionally, PrivadoVPN uses military-grade 256-bit AES encryption to secure user data.

Kill switch

PrivadoVPN features a kill switch that automatically disables your online activity after an unexpected loss of connection. Your internet will only return after the VPN has reconnected. That means you will never unintentionally send unsecured data.

SOCKS5 proxy

PrivadoVPN does not use the traditional proxy, rather opting for the SOCKS5 proxy. This is a significant upgrade that makes a whole lot of difference for users. SOCKS5 proxy is a more secure alternative, allowing you to hide your IP address.

So, if a website blocks the IP addresses of your VPN’s servers, you can bypass the block by routing your online traffic through a SOCKS5 proxy. Besides helping you avoid IP address blocks, the SOCKS5 proxy moves data quickly and provides a reliable connection, making it ideal for faster downloads and torrenting.

Ad blocker

Is there anything more frustrating on the internet than online ads? We guess not. Online ads mess with user experience and are almost impossible to control. Many apps promise to get rid of them, but they rarely work.

Enter PrivadoVPN’s ad blocker. If we didn’t test the ad blocker ourselves, we would have dismissed it as one of the other phony options.

PrivadoVPN’s ad blocker stopped intrusive ads from affecting our online experience during testing. We intentionally visited websites with the most annoying ads, and this VPN’s ad blocker successfully repelled them.

Besides blocking intrusive ads, the ad blocker blocks tracking cookies and targeted ads with the click of a button.

Threat protection

Online threats are growing every second and minute, meaning you need robust protection to stay safe online. PrivadoVPN offers a threat protection suite that fights online threats such as phishing, malware, etc. We visited insecure websites to test the threat protection, and it delivered impressive results.

Every time, the VPN warned us not to access suspicious websites. Likewise, it protected us from visiting links attached to suspicious emails.


The VPN service offers IKEv2 and OpenVPN (UDP and TCP) protocols. The OpenVPN protocol, especially the UDP version, is the best way to enhance your online security while maintaining sufficient speed.

Fortunately, You can tweak the protocols from the app’s ‘preferences’ tab depending on your need. In addition, an ‘automatic’ option promptly selects the best protocol for you if you are unsure which one to use.

Leak test results

During our tests on, we found no IP, DNS, or WebRTC leaks. We tested the VPN’s 10 servers in the UK, US, France, Brazil, and Germany, and they all passed all the leak tests.

Combined with other features like the kill switch and no-logs policy, your personal data will be safe from your Internet Service Provider (ISP) and other malicious third parties.

Security features PrivacdoVPN should consider

PrivadoVPN is secure, but its security mechanisms must be improved to compete with the best VPNs on the market. The following are some of the currently missing features that we would like the service to add: 

  • Diskless RAM-only servers – They ensure the servers do not store your data to keep you private. In fact, they wipe your information immediately after you end a VPN session. 
  • Multi-hop servers: So, instead of routing your traffic through a single server, the multi-hop feature redirects your traffic via two or more servers to improve your security. However, the additional server route might impede your speed. 
  • An efficient kill switch on macOS: A kill switch prevents data leaks in case the VPN connection drops. Therefore, it will be a great addition to the macOS app. 
  • First-party DNS servers: This feature would allow PrivadoVPN to manage your DNS requests rather than your ISP.

Privacy – Does PrivadoVPN keep you private?

Many VPN providers promise a zero-log policy, meaning they do not track and store your online activity, but most do not deliver on the promise. PrivadoVPN also claims a zero-log policy, but the facts do not support that claim.

As they say, the devil is in the detail. A thorough look into PrivadoVPN’s privacy policy shows that the VPN provider collects personal information such as email addresses, app analytics, and mobile identifiers.

Also, PrivadoVPN claims that it cannot supply any user information to law enforcement because it does not exist, but in the same breath, it says,

We store the data we collect about you for as long as necessary for the purposes for which we originally collected it.

It is not clear how long it is necessary for PrivadoVPN to retain user data. Nor do they elaborate on the purposes for data collection, except citing business reasons and Swiss law requirements. But clearly, this VPN provider does not operate a zero-log policy as it wants users to believe.

Despite PrivadoVPN’s disputed claim of zero-log policy, we acknowledge that it offers some level of confidence regarding data protection. The company is based in Switzerland, which arguably has some of the strongest consumer protection laws in the world.

Furthermore, the European country is not part of any international surveillance alliances, which means your data has less risk of exposure.

What information does PrivadoVPN need?

PrivadoVPN requires a verified email address to create a free account. In addition, it requires you to give your PayPal or credit card details to create a premium account that offers you access to all its advanced features. Moreover, after integrating with Coinbase in April 2022, this VPN service now accepts crypto payments. So, like most VPNs, you can now pay with your crypto debit card and crypto wallet.

What does PrivadoVPN offer during daily use?

This PrivadoVPN extensive review won’t be complete without discussing user experience. So, below, we explain what PrivadoVPN offers during daily use.


As we mentioned before, PrivadoVPN offers a decent speed. Therefore, the browsing speed is good enough for fast and seamless online activity. While protecting your privacy, this VPN won’t make you wait for websites to load.

However, you may have a different browsing experience when using the free version because it uses fewer servers, reducing your options. With PrivadoVPN free version, you can access only 12 global servers. In contrast, the subscription-based version offers more than 300 servers.

Nevertheless, the free version can still deliver decent browsing speed if your internet quality is good.


The VPN service unblocked streaming websites like Netflix US, Disney+, and HBO Max. Unluckily, we could not access BBC iPlayer, Hulu, and Amazon Prime Video.

PrivadoVPN does not offer dedicated streaming servers, but the platforms that we unblocked functioned properly with all the servers. Also, it provides fast speeds that enable you to stream smoothly without annoying buffering or lagging

Furthermore, the VPN has a free version with a monthly data cap of 10 GB. Unfortunately, this is insufficient for a data-intensive activity like streaming, and you’ll only be able to watch a 6-hour video or less if it is in HD.

Unblocked: Netflix, Disney+, YouTube, HBO Max, and other platforms

We experienced no issues accessing Netflix libraries in the UK, US, France, Japan, and Germany. The shows and movies loaded promptly, and we could stream in Ultra HD without buffering.

Also, we could access HBO Max using PrivadoVPN and stream the available content without any issues. 

Blocked by: BBC iPlayer, Hulu, and Amazon Prime Video

The VPN could not unblock Hulu, as it was detected the moment we attempted logging in.

Moreover, Amazon Prime Video was initially promising because we could log in and choose a show to stream. Unfortunately, we got an error message after clicking the ‘Start Watching’ button. It is disappointing that PrivadoVPN, unlike many other premium VPNs, failed to unblock these streaming sites. We recommend using a top-notch VPN provider like ExpressVPN to access all major streaming platforms.

Note: Streaming sites actively search for VPN servers to block them. Using such servers means you won’t be able to access geo-blocked shows. However, VPN providers like PrivadoVPN constantly update their servers to evade restrictions on streaming sites. Therefore, you must hunt for a server to access your target streaming platform.


What PrivadoVPN misses in streaming, it makes up in torrenting. All servers support P2P traffic, ensuring seamless torrenting.

PrivadoVPN also adds SOCKS5 Proxy to enhance torrenting. SOCKS5 servers provide faster speeds because they don’t use encryption, which makes data heavier and slows down connection.

Is PrivadoVPN safe?

PrivadoVPN claims that it practices a zero-log policy. However, as mentioned before, this claim is questionable.

According to PrivadoVPN’s Privacy Policy, last updated on September 15, 2022, the VPN provider admits that it collects mobile identifiers that benefit its marketing or channel partners.

While this disclosure feels uncomfortable, users can turn or reset the mobile identifiers anytime.

PrivadoVPN claims that if a regulatory authority seizes a physical server, no logs or information could be tied to an individual user, which is assuring. The VPN provider is also based in Switzerland, with a low risk of sharing private data.

Overall, PrivadoVPN is safe, but it does not operate a zero-log policy as it claims, which is concerning.

Is PrivadoVPN secure?

PrivadoVPN has some great security features that make your online activity secure. For example, the VPN uses 256-bit AES encryption that scrambles private data and makes it unreadable by a third party. It also offers IPv6 and DNS leak protection that prevents your online traffic from getting to your ISP’s servers.

Also, the kill switch feature cuts off your internet connection in case of disruption of the VPN connection.

Lastly, PrivadoVPN uses OpenVPN and IKEv2 encryption protocols, which offer strict security. We would have been more confident in PrivadoVPN’s security if it included WireGuard, the latest VPN protocol known for its improved security.

Nevertheless, PrivadoVPN is a generally secure VPN provider.

PrivadoVPN usability review

Besides security, speed, and unblocking, ease of use is another essential factor when buying a VPN. You want your ideal VPN to have a user-friendly interface, a simple installation process, and responsive customer support.

PrivadoVPN’s website

PrivadoVPN has a user-friendly website highlighting most of the VPN’s features on the homepage. The homepage also features all countries where the VPN provider has servers. The bottom of the homepage also has quick links to any information you want about PrivadoVPN.

PrivadoVPN download and compatibility

PrivadoVPN is compatible with many devices, making it an attractive choice. This VPN provider has apps for Windows, macOS, iOS, FireTV, and Android devices, including TVs. You can use a subscription for ten devices at a time to secure all your devices.

Here is how to execute the PrivadoVPN download and start using the VPN:

  1. Visit the PrivadoVPN website. 
  2. Either clickGet PrivadoVPN” in the top right corner or scroll down to the bottom of the homepage and tap a quick download link for your device. 
  3. The link will take you to your app store. Download and install the app. 
  4. Open the app and follow the on-screen instructions to connect to a server.

Desktop & laptop (Windows & macOS)

PrivadoVPN’s desktop apps have been in service since 2019 and are constantly being improved in terms of design and user experience, making them run more smoothly and fixing bugs. The kill switch is displayed at the front and center of the home screen.

However, the ‘Settings’ tab opens a new window, making the experience less controlled and your PC more disarranged, and you have to close the window manually.

The macOS app includes the ‘undock’ or ‘dock to tray’ feature, allowing you to drag and move the app. Unfortunately, you cannot manually resize the app, and the only other available type of customization is an ‘Auto Connect’ switch.

On the other hand, PrivadoVPN’s Windows app supports split tunneling. This feature lets you choose and control the apps that pass via the VPN tunnel. However, Privado should include this option in the iOS and macOS apps.

Mobile (iPhone & Android)

PrivadoVPN for iOS is much simpler to use compared to the macOS version. The interface is similar but includes fewer settings, only allowing you to turn on Auto Connect and switch protocols.

On the other hand, PrivadoVPN’s Android app is a bit more advanced. It includes a functional kill switch and split tunneling (Smart Route).

The Fire TV Stick app now works

PrivadoVPN’s Fire TV Stick app failed to function during our previous tests due to bugs. Luckily, this VPN service has updated and fixed its app, enabling it to unblock major streaming platforms such as Netflix effectively. Moreover, the app is easy to use and visually appealing. It also allows you to add servers to a favorite list, saving you the hassle of scrolling down the server list every time.

PrivadoVPN interface

PrivadoVPN’s simple interface lets you connect easily and operate the settings. The homepage has a space to search for the country you want to connect to. You can also sort servers by latency to find the best option for a seamless browsing experience.

Also, you can easily enable the kill switch from the homepage. You can access other settings by tapping the settings icon on the homepage.

Customer service

PrivadoVPN uses the email ticketing system to attend to customers.

When we tested the system, we were connected to a rep in about a minute. However, answers to some questions were vague, which was frustrating. Surely, customer support could be better.

PrivadoVPN server network

PrivadoVPN has at least 325 servers in 47 countries. The United Kingdom and the United States are some of the countries with the most servers.

PrivadoVPN server locations

Here are the 47 server locations:

  1. Africa – South Africa 
  2. Europe – Albania, Austria, Bulgaria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Sweden, Germany, Turkey, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, United Kingdom, Latvia, Netherlands, Poland, Norway, Portugal, Romania, Ukraine, Serbia, Russia, Slovenia, Slovakia, Switzerland, Spain.
  3. Asia – Hong Kong: SAR China, India, Japan, Korea (South), Malaysia, Mexico, Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan: Republic of China, Thailand
  4. Oceania – Australia, New Zealand 
  5. North America – Canada, United States 
  6. South America – Argentina, Brazil 
  7. Middle East – Israel, Indonesia,  

As you can see, most of the PrivadoVPN servers are based in European countries. The VPN provider has a presence in only two countries in each of these continents; Oceania, North America, South America, and the Middle East. Meanwhile, PrivadoVPN is in only one country in Africa.

Does PrivadoVPN Work in China?

PrivadoVPN can now circumvent The Great Firewall of China. However, it does not include the obfuscation feature, making it easy for Chinese authorities to see your VPN traffic. Also, the Free version of PrivadoVPN used to work in China, but it failed in July 2023.

We used a Shanghai server during our test and discovered it could bypass China’s Great Firewall. For example, we successfully unblocked YouTube and bypassed Chinese-blocked sites using the Taiwan server. Unfortunately, establishing a connection with China servers took a very long time. The triumph of PrivadoVPN in China is possible due to its small user base and unpopularity. As this VPN service becomes more popular, the Chinese authorities may eventually detect and block it. If you are blocked, you can select a top-tier alternative like ExpressVPN.

PrivadoVPN pricing and payment methods 

PrivadoVPN offers three payment packages that give you savings depending on how many months you pay for. Here are the price packages:

1-month plan24-month plan12-month plan

All three packages offer the same features. However, only the 12-month and 24-month plans offer a 30-day money-back guarantee. That means you get a month’s trial to determine if the VPN provider is worth investing in for 12 or 24 months.

You can pay for PrivadoVPN using your credit card, including Visa, MasterCard, Discover, Amex, JCB, Diners Club International, or PayPal account.

PrivadoVPN alternatives

1. ExpressVPN

ExpressVPN homepage new

ExpressVPN is a top-notch VPN service provider with a superb reputation on the market. It has over 3,000 global diskless RAM-only servers, ensuring no data is stored on the system’s hard drives.  

Furthermore, it offers advanced security and privacy features, including a kill switch, split tunneling, robust AES 256-bit encryption, and a strict no-logs policy. However, ExpressVPN is costly compared to other VPNs, but it is secure, fast, works in China, and unblocks popular streaming platforms.

2. Private Internet Access (PIA)

Private Internet Access VPN

Private Internet Access (PIA) boasts an extensive network of over 29,000 servers spread across 84 countries worldwide. It is ideal for major streaming platforms and circumventing geo-restrictions in censored countries like China. Also, it offers decent and consistent speeds, allowing you to enjoy streaming without buffering and online gaming without lags.

Moreover, it has cutting-edge security and privacy features such as customizable AES 128-bit and AES 256-bit encryptions, a kill switch, a strict no-logs policy, split tunneling, and a threat protection feature. Also, it allows unlimited simultaneous connections and offers a 30-day money-back guarantee.

3. NordVPN

NordVPN Best VPNs 600x300

NordVPN is a reputable VPN service provider based in Panama. It offers advanced privacy and security features such as a double VPN, DNS leak protection, bullet-proof encryption, an automatic kill switch, ad-blocking, and a verified zero-logs policy. In addition, it has dedicated P2P servers and apps for all popular operating systems. The VPN service allows up to six simultaneous connections from a single subscription. Moreover, it includes a user-friendly interface and offers 24/7 customer support with a live feature.


PrivadoVPN is one of the youngest VPN providers in the industry and is holding its own regarding security, safety, and speed.

It features security features such as a kill switch, a decent logging policy, 256-bit AES encryption, and IPv6 & DNS leak protection that protect your online experience.  

Despite PrivadoVPN’s success in security, it disappoints with its streaming performance, which is not good enough for us. Nevertheless, the VPN provider offers decent speed and a free plan.

Ultimately, PrivadoVPN offers fairly good value for the money, but you can find much better VPNs out there.


Yes and no. PrivadoVPN has free and paid plans. If you don’t want to pay, you can use PrivadoVPN for free but expect less functionality.

That depends on what you need from the free service. If you aim to bypass weak geo-blocks on YouTube, Twitter, and other less aggressive sites, you can enjoy PrivadoVPN for free. However, you need the paid version if you want a VPN that unblocks tougher sites and downloads torrents.

While PrivadoVPN unblocks Netflix in a few countries, there are better options for unblocking content on the streaming platform, as explained in our PrivadoVPN review. You need a more reliable VPN provider like ExpressVPN to unblock Netflix and other top streaming sites.

All 325 PrivadoVPN servers support P2P traffic, making the VPN provider a great fit for fast downloads on popular torrenting apps. The presence of SOCKS5 proxy servers also enhances torrenting.

Suppose you want more robust VPN providers that you can trust with your online safety, security, and streaming experience, consider any of NordVPN, Surfshark, and ExpressVPN. All three have advanced features that enhance their performance. PrivadoVPN offers decent performance, but it’s a long way from the top performers in the industry.