The best router VPN will allow you to access the internet through a VPN when playing on your home video game consoles. Unfortunately, Xbox, PlayStation, and Nintendo consoles don’t allow you to install a VPN directly, so what you have to do is connect your router through a VPN, and then everything in your household will be going through the VPN connection.
Not every VPN service can be used on a router, which is why we’ve made this list of the best router VPN services. We’ve picked out the six best providers whose VPNs you’ll be able to connect your router through – and, of course, they all have a selection of other benefits to offer as well.
Our overall pick is ExpressVPN, and we’ll get into our reasons for choosing it below, but before you read on, it’s important to keep in mind that a VPN that offers router support won’t necessarily work with your own router and you might want to look at our guide on the best VPN routers if you want to invest in a new router too. We also have lists on the best PlayStation 5 and PlayStation 4 VPNs, and the best VPN for Xbox which might be worth cross-checking.
The best router VPN services are:
- ExpressVPN – best for routers
- Ivacy VPN – best price
- Private Internet Access – most servers
- CyberGhost – best for streaming
- Surfshark – best free trial
- NordVPN – best speeds
1. The best router VPN
The best option to go for is ExpressVPN. Of course, like every provider on this list, you can connect your router through it, but what sets it apart from the rest is the fact that it uses the Lightway protocol, which allows it to connect more quickly than others, while also staying connected even while you switch networks.
Additionally, ExpressVPN is well known for its use of the TrustedServer system. What this means is that its servers are unable to write any data about your online activities, giving you complete reassurance that whatever you decide to do online through your consoles will remain private. All in all, it’s a brilliant gaming VPN, and while it may be a bit more expensive than some of the others, it’s a clear case of getting what you pay for.
2. The best cheap router VPN
Are you keen to avoid high VPN costs? If so, we recommend Ivacy VPN. We have partnered with this provider in order to bring our readers an exclusive deal which works out as just $1 per month if you go for the five year plan. That’s $60 in one go and then you don’t have to worry about VPN expenses again for a quarter of a decade.
If you’re worried that this will be a sub-par service just because it’s a cheap VPN, let us reassure you. Impressively, Ivacy VPN has 5,700 servers spread out across more than 100 countries (a bigger range than any other provider on this list) and its military-grade 256-bit encryption means your activities online will remain as private as possible. It’s a robust service and one with a price tag small enough to leave you with more money for new games.
3. The router VPN with the most servers
Having a lot of servers is great. If there’s a certain game or streaming service that doesn’t work so well on the specific server you’re trying to connect through, then you can just switch over to other servers until you find one that runs it smoothly. With over 35,000 servers, Private Internet Access has a bigger selection than any other major VPN provider.
Further to its credit, this is also another of the cheaper VPN options out there. Additionally, it allows customers to connect through up to ten simultaneous devices, so it could come in handy for protecting devices beyond your Xbox/PlayStation/Switch, or it could also be good for your whole household, if you all play different consoles at the same time and would like to have a VPN to secure the connection.
4. The best router VPN for streaming
For many of us, our game consoles are increasingly becoming a complete home entertainment centre, and there’s a good chance that you watch a lot of TV shows through yours. If you do enjoy a bit of streaming, then we recommend CyberGhost as the best VPN for streaming.
Not only does CyberGhost have a respectable server selection (7,400 of them across 91 countries), but it is also broadly compatible with all the major streaming platforms. Even if you happen to find one that’s blocking you when the VPN is on, you’ll have plenty of others to switch between until you find yourself viewing it without a hitch.
5. The best VPN free trial
Do you want to take a VPN for a spin to make sure it will work with your home router? If so, you should try Surfshark because it offers a seven day VPN free trial, which should give you plenty of time to determine whether or not it works okay with your router, as well as time to test it with all your favourite online services.
And that’s not all! Surfshark is one of very few VPN providers who allows you to have an unlimited number of simultaneous connections. Even if you live with loads of people, you could use this to protect the privacy of all of them online, and if you split the costs between you, the expense could be tiny.
6. The fastest router VPN
For some VPN shoppers, nothing is more important than speed. If you want the fastest VPN service, then NordVPN is the one to go for. When tested against other major VPN providers it came out on top, with average serves download speeds of 65.79Mbit/s (on OpenVPN) – and while that will vary depending on time of day (or your device) it’s still a good stretch ahead of the other big fish in the VPN pond.
Many internet service providers (ISPs) will slow down your connection speeds if you’re using a lot of bandwidth, and not only can NordVPN mask your activities (stopping ISPs from doing this), but with its zippy download speeds, it might even make things faster overall. If you’re somebody who plays online (or, especially, someone who plays games via the cloud), the benefits of this VPN could be enormous.
We put this list together by carefully weighing up the strengths of different VPN providers that offer router support and then determining which are the most useful to console gamers who might want to connect through a router. While ExpressVPN is our top pick, we can understand that other providers on this list might be more appropriate depending on each reader’s circumstances.