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Best VPN for Mac (2020 Review)

If you’re like me and don’t know what to do with your hands if someone puts a PC in front of you, finding the best apps that work specifically for Mac is vital. If you can also relate to refusing to miss an episode of House Hunters while you’re traveling, you’ll need to find the right VPN service to use for your Mac. Apple itself even discusses how to use VPNs on its devices.

If you do a simple Google search, you’d get hundreds of different advertisements and opinions are which VPNs are the best for Mac. It’s important to know that depending on what type of computer or system you’re using, there will be a VPN that best fits that specific type.

In this article, we’ll discuss which VPNs are best and most effectively run on Macs. So regardless of what you’re using it for, you’ll get choices of which is the best option specifically geared towards Mac users.

TLDR

If you don’t have time for the whole article, we’ll cut to the chase.

We picked NordVPN as the top overall VPN for Macs. With security, internet speeds, and price all taken into consideration, we think NordVPN is overall the best choice. Their security is high-end, and it’s very effective for streaming.

It’s certainly worth mentioning the other two options are also good when considering using a VPN for Mac.

Rankings

You should think about VPNs the way you think about your WiFi speed. If you don’t have to think about it, that means it’s working well. If you do, that means you’re probably having issues.

While there are guides for the uses of specific VPNs, such as one’s best suited for streaming such as Netflix, we’ll list the best overall choices for Mac operating systems, including ones that offer both speed and privacy for the best price available.

1. NordVPN

Overview and Features

NordVPN, the first option on our list, offers a huge amount of servers for using their service on a Mac. Between Europe, Asia, and the Americans, Nordvpn users can choose 5,000 plus different locations to have their internet activity identified. This is important because a user of this program can basically hide their IP address from anywhere in the world.

They use an algorithm that identifies what you’re using a VPN for, then it links you to the best option for your usage and connection. They will suggest the best option for you that provides the overall best experience for streaming, speed, downloads, and privacy.

NordVPN puts an emphasis on privacy by using military-grade encryptions to protect the identity of its users. Using this high of a level of encryption means that even when your date was to be exposed to a hacker or third party, it would be essentially gibberish. For more information on how exactly this works, check out our basic guide on VPN privacy.

This service allows protection for up to 6 devices, which is fairly common for most VPN services. With a dedicated app for multiple devices, they ensure your privacy will be protected in a variety of formats, including multiple Macintosh uses.

If you’re wondering what exactly sets NordVPN for Mac apart from the other options, that’s probably clear by now. It’s their commitment to privacy and protection of any and all information of its users. We think it’s probably the best overall option for Mac when considering features and prices.

Since they provide a dedicated application for Mac, it ensures all the features will be available in the highest functioning form available. Below, you’ll see exactly how much detail NordVPN puts into its security.

Now, just because security is its main selling point, NordVPN is still an effective option for streaming and downloading. Because of the vast number of servers available, multiple country’s versions of apps like Netflix will be available, creating an all-around VPN service.

Price

Like most VPN services, NordVPN offers a lower rate for longer-term contracts. Its prices are similar to the others listed on this guide, especially when comparing month to month costs. They run holiday specials that cut costs, so keep an eye out for promotions from the website. Otherwise, it’s still affordable, especially for the protection they provide.

Pros

  • A huge amount of servers
  • Advertisement-blocker
  • Commitment to privacy and security
  • Customer service

Cons

  • Inconsistent speeds
  • A limited number of simultaneous devices

Price

$2.99-$11.95 per month

Protect your internet privacy with NordVPN!

2. Surfshark

Overview and Features

Surfshark, the second option on our list, is certainly the best choice if you’re looking for the best bang for your buck on Mac. It’s a multi-purpose service, offering not only a cheap price but also solid speeds and good protection. It’s also internationally relevant, offering over 1000 servers in over 60 countries.

Even if you’re using a VPN for access to streaming, Surfshark still provides privacy protection much like other services. They don’t track your data, have an automatic kill switch to protect your information if there is a connection issue and they provide a private DNS for those paying for their service.

Aside from privacy features, Surfshark also uses Whitelister, a program that tunnels the VPN only when needed. So basically, you can have the VPN running on only sites that are needed. So if you want to use location services in the area you’re actually located in, but still want the protection of a VPN, this app can split up those sites that you can change from your account.

If downloading large files or torrenting is part of your computer usage, Surfshark allows many servers that work well for torrenting, as they offer over 800 servers optimized for torrenting in over 50 countries.

This VPN service provides an app that runs on a variety of programs (listed below) and offers unlimited device use, as others can only connect to up to 5 devices at a time.

Surfshark offers many of the same features others do. Privacy and file protection, good streaming speeds, and unlimited device usage. The reason it’s popular is the price, which we’ll discuss below.

Price

This is probably the category in which Surfshark leads the pack. They offer an extremely user-friendly pricing package as well as a free trial and money-back guarantee. Compared to the other services, Surfshark can save you hundreds of dollars a year. If you sign up for longer contracts, it can be as low as $1.99 a month (extremely cheap for an effective VPN), as seen in the image below. One year contracts run about $5.99 and month to month is $11.95.

They seem to constantly run promotions and offer lower rates as longer you sign up for (12 mo/24 mo). Between the numerous features and low price, Surfshark is an effective VPN choice for any Mac user looking to protect their computer and open their streaming options for a low price.

Pros

  • High-end security and encryption
  • No logs or data tracking
  • Extremely cheap
  • Supported for Torrent applications
  • Good for streaming

Cons

  • Limited servers
  • Newcomer to the VPN market

Price

$1.95-$11.95 per month

Give Surfshark a try today!

3. ExpressVPN

Overview and Features

ExpressVPN is not only one of the original VPN heavyweights but is probably the premium option due to its servers, speed, and privacy. It’s known for its user-friendly interface as it’s extremely easy to use, especially on the app for mac. It’s as simple as paying, downloading, and minutes later you’re connected to one of its servers.

This VPN service has many of the same features the other options do. They offer a kill switch in case of a lapse in connection, as well as split tunneling, allowing a user to choose what sites are tracked and what is not. This, like the others, encrypts your data so anything intercepted is essentially illegible.

Since ExpressVPN advertises its connection speed, they offer a speed test through the app, so you can always check your connection speed on any server you’re using. This makes it a popular choice among those using VPNs for streaming. There are other ways to test your VPN speed and strength, having one in the app makes for easy user experience.

It’s worth noting that this article is being written on a Mac using ExpressVPN. No matter where in the world we may be writing from, the connection stays extremely fast and through almost a year of using it, there has not been a single data issue stemming from my use of multiple servers

ExpressVPN is one of the best for Mac because of its compatibility. Working on a variety of systems as listed below, this VPN is the most user-friendly for Mac users due to its internet speed and user-friendly interface.

Price

It does not offer the extremely low price of other options but considering the popularity, it’s prices are middle of the road, whether it be short term or long term. There isn’t a huge discrepancy between a long term or short term subscriptions, which can be great if you’re looking to use it while you’re traveling temporarily. Also, there is a 30-day money-back guarantee, but we guess you probably won’t need it.

Pros

  • Enhanced security
  • Compatible on a variety of Mac platforms
  • Self speed tests
  • Customer service
  • Money-back guarantee

Cons

  • Low amount of server choices
  • Lack of discount of long-term plans
  • Limited devices for simultaneous connection

Download ExpressVPN

Want More Information on VPNs?

Whew, okay. That was a lot of info. So if you’ve navigated through this entire guide and you still have a few questions, check out our article on why you made need a VPN and what exactly there are.

So, What Now?

Now that we’ve made our way through the list of the best VPNs for Macs, it’s time to choose one. Once you do, there are plenty of helpful guides to assist in the process of how to download and run them. Regardless of the choice, there are lots of good options for VPN services on Mac. Once you download, it’s important to continue the use of one to make sure your identity and information are protected, no matter where in the world you might be!

More related Guides

FAQ

Do I need a VPN for a Mac?

The short answer is no. VPNs are an effective way to protect your information while using unsecured networks, especially while traveling. Using one will give you privacy and peace of mind. Also, you can allow using the internet as you would in your home country.

How do I create a VPN on a Mac??

Look through this list, make the choice, pay and download. Once you install the VPN, it should automatically connect with your wifi. I’m using ExpressVPN and the symbol to the left of Bluetooth tells me that I’m connected to both wifi and my VPN. You can always choose to turn them on and off, but for the purpose of this article, we’ll assume you’ll want to keep it connected for most things.

Are VPNs legal?

Yes, Virtual Private Network services are completely legal in almost all countries. But if you are doing illegal things while using a VPN, it’s still illegal, a VPN doesn’t change that.