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Host Europe review

A robust, feature-packed provider best suited for German-speaking customers

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(Image: © Host Europe)

Our Verdict

Host Europe offers some well-designed products for a fair price, but it's a struggle to use if you can't read German.

For

  • SSL permanently included
  • Every plan has all features
  • 14-day money back guarantee

Against

  • FAQ and other documentation only available in German
  • Verification process can be arduous
  • Only one domain per account

Host Europe is a German web hosting provider that was founded in 1997. Host Europe is one of the brands of European website hosting, email hosting, and domain name registrar Host Europe Group (HEG), along with the likes of 123 Reg and Heart Internet. HEG was acquired by GoDaddy in 2017 and according to news from 2019, the name was slowly being phased out, although this does not affect Host Europe directly.

The company has more than a million domains under their management, with more than a quarter million users, 46,000 virtual servers in use. Host Europe has data centers in Cologne and Strasbourg, and a dedicated section of their website goes in depth about the specifications of each. Both place a lot of importance on energy efficiency and security, so customers can rest easy knowing their website is in good hands.

Read more: 000webhost

Host Europe is a German hosting provider with more than two decades of experience. One of the biggest perks of their offers is the fact that more expensive plans do not include any extra features, instead just increasing the amount of what you already get. Their services are pretty straightforward and easy to use, but all help articles remain available only in their original German.

Pricing

Host Europe has cheap monthly prices but you will have to pay a one off setup fee (Image credit: Host Europe)

Pricing

Host Europe offers different plans depending on whether you’re looking to pay on a monthly or annual basis. Although the monthly price is the same, month-long contracts include a one-off setup fee of €14.99. Other than that, the two contracts are largely the same. 

The Basic plan will set you back €4.99 per month and permanently includes an annual domain SSL, 50GB total storage space, 2 MySQL databases, an automated mailbox migration, and Kaspersky virus protection. More expensive plans add no extra features, instead increasing the amount of storage space and databases customers get. 

The provider accepts cards and PayPal, and you can also create a SEPA mandate for future payments. You can cancel your contract within 14 days and get all your payments reimbursed.

Ease of use

Creating an account with Host Europe is quite straightforward: you’ll have to give them your name, phone number, and address. You will receive an order confirmation email with detailed explanations of the features you’ll receive, the cancellation policy, and the Service Level Agreement - but there’s one significant catch: it’s all in German. This is, of course, not a problem if you speak the language, but it can be a dealbreaker for international customers. Additionally, this order confirmation is actually not an acceptance of the contract on their part, so you’ll still have to wait for them to let you know they accept your order.

A short wait later, Host Europe had accepted our order, but needed us to further verify it by sending them an email with the order name, price, and a copy of our identity card - both the front and the back - within six days of first receiving the email. Once you’ve completed the verification process, you’ll be able to access your service; until then, your account with Host Europe is largely useless.

Account

You can manage all of your web hosting products from Host Europe's account page (Image credit: Host Europe)

When it comes to website building, you can use WordPress or Joomla without any issues, but there are also a few WordPress-specific plans available where it comes pre-installed. Host Europe also offers an incredibly basic website builder. If you already have a website, you can upload it through an FTP access point. 

Performance

We used GTmetrix to measure the performance of our Host Europe site (Image credit: GTmetrix)

Speed and experience

The loading speed of the Host Europe main website is almost perfectly average, according to a GTmetrix test. The time the website took to fully load was 8.9 seconds, only slightly more than the average 8.3 seconds, while it took 89 requests -- exactly the same as average. 

The company’s Service Level Agreement guarantees a minimum of 99.95% uptime, which corresponds to about 4.5 hours of annual downtime or around 10 minutes in two weeks. During our own two-week long testing period, the company’s main website recorded absolutely no downtime, meaning they’re well on their way to fulfilling this promise.

Support

Host Europe’s website often pings with little prompts from their live chat service, asking customers if they need any assistance. Their phone support team is also available round the clock, with toll-free phone numbers available for customers from Germany, Austria, and Switzerland, as long as they’re calling from a landline. There is also an Order Hotline, available only on weekdays from 9am to 5pm. Along with email addresses, a fax number, a contact form, and their postal address, customers are guaranteed to get in touch with their customer service one way or another.

FAQ

You'll need to brush up on your German first before using Host Europe's FAQ (Image credit: Host Europe)

There is also a FAQ section, but it doesn’t seem to be translated to English at all. Unfortunately, this means international clients are unlikely to find help this way. Host Europe does not have a user forum.

The competition

Bluehost is decently cheap, but its prices spike after the initial 36-month period, something that doesn’t happen with Host Europe. The latter also offers monthly contracts, while Bluehost requires customers to sign up on an annual basis.

As a fellow German provider, Hetzner offers relatively cheap service. Although slightly more expensive, Host Europe does not have a setup fee on its annual plan that Hetzner has, nor does it include quite as many restrictions.

Although Host Europe’s 14-day money-back guarantee sounds attractive, it is quickly eclipsed by Hostgator’s 45-day guarantee. Hostgator also offers better help sections, with both written and video guides and how-tos.

Heart Internet is another brand that belonged to HEG along with Host Internet. Aside from location, the biggest difference is that Host Europe offers refunds whereas Heart Internet does not. The latter is also slightly more expensive.

Final verdict

Host Europe is a decent hosting provider that becomes excellent if you speak German, but otherwise, the language barrier can be too much to cross for many. Newcomers who would benefit from a FAQ section in English might be better off with Bluehost or Hostgator in the long run.