Windscribe is one of the few VPNs to offer a free version – no free limited time trial, no money back guarantee –
… Yes, « free », as in « costs nothing », forever!
So what is the reason that you are even read that at all instead of enjoying Windscribe hell? Well, there is more than one candidate:
- Can i trust the free version of Windscribe?
- Are the data limits sufficient for daily internet use?
- Does that make sense get a paid subscription?
Difficult questions! In this detailed guide, we will find the answer to each one, having gone through all the factual information as well as our personal experience with Windscribe.
Before we dive in, here’s a quick verdict for those who prefer to read the summary first; use the dotted links to scroll to the detailed chapters:
Windscribe has one of the best free VPN plans out there, with up to 10GB / month of bandwidth, unlimited devices, decent speed, and multiple servers available.
But when it comes to something free, there is always a catch …
Considering the current trends in internet data consumption, Windscribe is not so much a free VPN, but rather a regular paid VPN with a generous free trial.
And when you consider the really important things like functionality, privacy, and support, that’s a Quite unspectacular VPN. What’s more,
Once you’ve (inevitably) hit your data limits and consider Windscribe Pro, you’ll find that it’s far from cheap compared to most other major VPNs.
So if you plan to use a VPN regularly and want real value for money, check out our evidence-based guide to choosing the best VPN:
Top 3 Best Value VPNs ›
Okay, how did we come to these conclusions, you might ask? Let’s start by looking at what sets Windscribe apart from the VPN crowd:
When we talk about Windscribe, we can of course not skip the free version. In fact, this is easily the most distinctive feature of this VPN:
- You can start using Windscribe without creating an account or by leaving your payment information: 2 gigabytes of traffic per month is completely free.
The easiest way to try Windscribe is to install one of its browser extensions – a few clicks and you are behind an active VPN!
This might just be the easiest welcome process for any VPN we’ve ever used ?
- The free data limit can be increased to 10 GB / month if you create an account and verify your email – which is considerably superior to most other free VPNs.
(With the exception of the unlimited free plan at ProtonVPN, probably).
It’s a great way to test Windscribe without worrying about time limitations, but the monthly data allowance runs out pretty quickly with normal internet use.
… Speaking of navigation:
Can this statement be trusted? For a more in-depth discussion of Windscribe’s privacy and security options, check out this part of our review.
Finally, there is this guy:
- ROBERT is a customizable tool that helps you block unwanted websites, remove ads, prevent infections – and therefore browse the internet more safely and faster.
It’s pretty straightforward to use: there are several predefined blocklists that you can turn on and off for different types of potentially dangerous online content –
It also gives you the option to create custom access rules to block / unblock specific sites or IP addresses.
Note that ROBERT does not work in browser extensions, so you will need to download a Windows or Mac package to use it on your computer.
Since we’re already on the subject of privacy and security, let’s take a closer look:
Privacy and Security
The first thing you need to check about a VPN is whether it keeps logs of your online activity. That’s the whole point, after all! As we already mentioned earlier,
Windscribe does not keep records about your online activity, including the sites you visit and the services you use.
This means that even though authorities make requests for information about users (and they do so regularly), there is not much that Windscribe can provide – they do. does not have:
However, there is one thing about Windscribe that makes this VPN a little less appealing to privacy-conscious users –
He is based in Canada.
… Wait, why do we say this like it’s something wrong?
Of course, Canada is not exactly a totalitarian state that is determined to record everything on everyone – but it’s also far from being the most privacy-friendly jurisdiction on the planet.
To add to that, Canada is an active member of the so-called Fourteen Eyes Alliance ?️?️ (a scary name, isn’t it?)
The Alliance also includes the United States, United Kingdom, Australia, Germany, France and most of the rest of Western Europe; his goal is to share surveillance information between its members, which includes online data.
… And yes, there are 14 members, so every member country is like a one-eyed Cyclops or something? But we are moving away!
Either way, while there is nothing inherently wrong with using a VPN based outside of maple syrup country, there are certainly far more appropriate jurisdictions out there.
We had very low expectations for Windscribe’s customer support – after all, most freemium VPNs use it as an additional tool to entice their users to purchase the paid version.
In this case, we weren’t disappointed (which almost counts as a positive surprise):
- If you prefer self-help, there is a comprehensive library of installation guides for all imaginable devices, as well as a database
- The semi-smart option is to talk to Garry, the AI assistant which can guide you to a likely answer to your question faster (well, not by much, but sometimes it’s fun)
- As for talking to a person, you can ask a question on Reddit or submit a ticket on the Windscribe website here.
We tested the latter method and got an email response within 8 hours – not bad considering we’re on a free plan ?
However, since most of the big VPNs offer a live chat option, which allows you to solve your problem. in real time – Windscribe support cannot be characterized as anything other than « okay ».
Does the situation change when you are on the Pro plan?
Windscribe offers 5 different usage options, making it one of the most flexible VPNs on the market. Let’s see which of these makes the most sense (if any):
- We have already mentioned the fact that you can use 2 gigabytes per month at Windscribe without even creating an account,
- Then there is the To free package: if you add your email and create an account your limit will be increased to 10GB / month,
- The bounty Pro the plan (which of course is what pays for all free users) comes with a monthly or annual billing cycle; there is no difference in terms of functionality, just the price;
- Finally you can create your own plan by choosing one or more server locations (each adds 10GB / month to your data limit), with an option to add unlimited data for an additional $ 1 / month.
The only significant differences between the free and paid Windscribe options are the monthly data limits and the number of slots available ?
Additionally, ROBERT is also available for free users, but they only get two blocklists and three access rules. There are no limits for paid users.
Here is the same information in a more digestible table format:
|Characteristic||No account||Free Account||Monthly Pro||Annual Pro|
|Data limit||2 GB / month||10 GB / month||Unlimited||Unlimited|
|Monthly price||$ 0.00||$ 0.00||$ 9.00||$ 4.08|
$ 4 per month seems like a pretty good deal (seems expensive:
On top of that, most of the companies in the table above (eg Surfshark or NordVPN) offer 10x the servers, much better speeds, and live support!
It looks like Windscribe Pro doesn’t really make sense if you’ve ever decided to take privacy and security seriously, there are tons of better options.
– « Well, I’m going to stay on the free plan forever, what’s the problem? » «
Hmm, that Is sounds better than spending money at all … But let’s do some math to put things in perspective:
Is 10 GB / month enough?
Well, this question is not really helpful if we are trying to come to an objective conclusion. All we can do is answer it with another question:
…enough for what exactly?
Granted, everyone has their own internet habits – so the only meaningful way to approach this is to look at trends and average numbers:
- By far the highest data consumption rate is video streaming like YouTube and Netflix: at least 3 GB / hour for correct image quality.
- Then there are things like music streaming (~ 150Mb / hour) and torrents (from 500 MB to> 10 GB per movie).
- Finally, there’s everything else, including online gaming, video calling, file storage – as well as regular browsing. It’s hard to find a single number here, but depending on the type of activity, it can range from 50MB / hour to 500MB / hour.
According to Decision Data, an average American household consumes ~ 350 GB / month of bandwidth – and this figure keeps increasing every year.
It may differ from country to country, but even if we take half that number, we run out of Windscribe data quite quickly:
Remember what we said earlier about Windscribe being a paid VPN with a generous free trial? That is why.
It’s time to summarize what we’ve learned:
Should you use Windscribe?
The best thing about Windscribe is its free forever plan – so if all you need is a VPN, a a few times a month (eg watching multiple videos or downloading 2-3 torrents) – go for it!
Other than that, it’s value for money hardly – you can easily get a better VPN for a much lower price.
So if you’re seriously considering using a VPN to protect your entire home network as well as your mobile devices, it’s worth looking elsewhere:
Our top 3 VPN choices ›
And of course, if you have any other questions about Windscribe or if you want to share your experience with this VPN, join the discussion below!