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Top 6 reasons why you need a VPN when you travel

Don't leave home without a VPN in 2022

by Irene Park

Beyond keeping you, your family, and your devices safe in your daily life, did you know a VPN service can keep you safe and happy while traveling?

The virtues and necessities of Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) have been extolled relentlessly by safety and security advocates, including Kurt.

To refresh your understanding of VPNs, please check out articles including The safest way to browse the web: VPN Browsing and Best VPNs for 2022

Staying connected even while traveling is commonplace nowadays. This, however, leaves you and your devices exposed to certain dangers or inconveniences while traveling. To safely keep in touch with friends and family, handle work or business matters, access financial accounts, and pull up travel documents, you need to stay connected to the internet.

Because you won’t have your home network to connect to regularly, you’ll be more reliant on other networks, which can leave you & your devices more exposed.

 

Top 6 Reasons VPNs Make Travel Safer & Better

Not only will using a VPN service keep you safer, but it’ll make your travels easier. Check out the Top 6 reasons why you want to ‘pack’ a VPN service with you on your next trip!

 

1. Safeguard your connection from Hackers

person using a credit card to purchase something online

Many cell phone providers charge a hefty fee for data and cellular services outside of the US.  Maybe you’re traveling within the US but you’re in an area where there is poor to no reception from your cellular provider.

If you need to stay in touch with friends or families while traveling, many times you need to rely on wifi networks both free or otherwise to send texts or make calls through apps like WhatsApp, etc.

Connecting to just any network, especially open or free ones, may seem easy on the wallet but can cost you later.  Any network that doesn’t require a login and password means anyone can gain access to user data or device on it.

Even secure wireless networks like the one from your hotel don’t necessarily keep you completely out of the woods.  Everything you do from your device on that public network is still available to the provider of the network as well as the ISP of that provider.

With a VPN you can hide your IP address and keep your data encrypted and hidden while on free, public, secure wifi networks. This means that what you are browsing and the info you send out or receive are more secure. In order to not sacrifice security for connectivity, especially when you’re in a pinch, use a VPN to make sure you can take advantage of both.

 

2. Bypass Blocked and Censored Sites

Get around censored sites
Some countries have censorship laws or policies that block sites like Facebook, certain news outlets, as well as streaming platforms like Youtube.

If you have a VPN service, you could choose another location where the site you are trying to get to is not blocked.

Where providers such as ExpressVPN shines is that it has so many server locations (160) to choose from out of 94 countries. That means more areas to set your VPN to so you can access blocked sites.

 

3. Access Entertainment anywhere

Enjoy Streaming services on the go
It’s hard to imagine that your favorite networks and streaming platforms are local or US-based only. With certain laws and regulations as well as simple availability, you might miss your favorite show or sporting event while on the road.  A VPN service lets you select your home country as your location and it will pull up websites as if you were back home.

 

4. Netflix and Chill wherever, whenever

Netflix
Because Netflix provides certain content based on region, it tends to show content for the given area your device is trying to access its website from.

Certainly, that’s Netflix’s prerogative due to regional content agreements, but what if you’re traveling and want to watch your own home shows and movies?

Short answer: it might not be available…unless you have a VPN service.  Because you can select an IP address location, you can select it for a location back in the US or your hometown to access the content you want. Netflix has notoriously cracked down on the use of VPNs. That’s where having a VPN service, such as ExpressVPN, that has a lot of servers in locations around the world helps. You’ll more likely be able to find a workaround if your IP address gets blocked by Netflix.

 

5. Prevent Account locked outs

Don't get locked out of your accounts
Of course, the best action is to notify your financial institutions that you’ll be traveling abroad before you depart for your trip.  Sometimes we forget or there are accounts that don’t have customer support to inform of your travel plans.

When you start trying to access your bank account websites from an international IP address, your account can be flagged for fraudulent activity and locked.

If you’re in the US & within operating hours, you might luck out and be able to call customer service and get it sorted out.

What if you’re traveling where there’s little to no cellular reception or in a foreign country where the time difference and hassle of making outgoing calls make the process cumbersome and challenging?

With a VPN service, you can set your location to where you normally access your account, preventing such disruptions.

 

6. Find Better Travel Deals

book better travel deals on the go

It’s common knowledge that advertisers send you targeted ads to buy goods or services based on your location.  Did you know that prices can fluctuate higher in areas away from home for the same thing?

That means, based on the location of your IP address, you can be charged more than your friend across town.

With a VPN service, you can set the IP address for the location you’re traveling to see if you can get the prices that the locals get.

 

What are the best VPN providers?

If you’re curious about exploring VPN service providers, check out our Best VPNs for 2022 article.  One of the top picks was ExpressVPN because it has a strong set of qualities that mitigate the privacy and security issues that comes with browsing online. Not only will ExpressVPN not log your IP address, but it will not store browsing history, metadata, traffic destination, or DNS queries. If hiding your IP address and browsing more privately & securely is a priority for you, then ExpressVPN might be a great investment for you.

Have you used a VPN when you’re traveling? How has it helped you?  Comment below.

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