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The best VPN for Canada in 2020

best Canada VPN
(Image credit: Future)

Canada has some pretty strict cybersecurity laws, upheld in an effort to prevent the likes of terrorism. The country’s government has some far-reaching powers in terms of legislation which many believe is an infringement to their personal right to privacy. And naturally a VPN can help with maintaining the latter.

Of course, downloading a Virtual Private Network is useful for a number of years, not just maintaining your privacy – it can also allow unblocking content such as streaming services. Most providers have servers located in Canada, but which is the best VPN for you? That’s the decision we’re here to help you with.

Top 5 best VPNs for Canada 2020

(Image credit: Future)

1. ExpressVPN

Best overall VPN for Canada

Number of servers: 3,000+ | Server locations: 160 | IP addresses: N/A | Maximum devices supported: 5

Broad server coverage
Great mobile apps
Slightly more expensive than other VPNs

ExpressVPN maintains hundreds of servers in Canada spread across three locations. Our tests revealed that this provider offers very good performance levels, with consistent speeds that were very close to what we’d normally see without a VPN.

There are numerous native apps for all major devices and platforms. The mobile clients in particular are some of the best in the business, optimized for speed and ease of use. In terms of security, this provider uses the OpenVPN protocol, protecting your data with 256-bit encryption. Privacy-wise, there is no logging of traffic data or any online activity.

Bear in mind, though, that the service hits a snag when it comes to pricing, especially given the steep monthly billing. There is no free trial either, but all subscriptions are covered by a 30-day 100% money-back guarantee. Out of the three plans on offer, the 1-year subscription is by far the best value.

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As if the quality of ExpressVPN wasn't enough on its own, it also has some great pricing to tempt you in. Opt for an annual plan and you instantly get a massive 49% reduction from the usual monthly price - as well as three months free! Still not sure? Then you can always take advantage of the 30-day money back guarantee

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(Image credit: Future)

2. IPVanish

One of the best all-round VPNs for Canada

Number of servers: 1,300+ | Server locations: 75 | IP addresses: 40,000+ | Maximum devices supported: 10

Excellent clients
Great performance
Small issue with Windows client
No free trial

IPVanish offers 35 server locations in Canada alone, with an additional 500+ servers located in the US, so there’s certainly no shortage here. The software clients are rather impressive and intuitive, with just the right balance of basic and advanced options (but the Windows client may be more prone to the odd network issue than rival VPN provider’s software).

In testing the service we found it gave us a substantial increase in download speeds over our normal rates, making it ideal for torrents. OpenVPN, PPTP, L2TP/IPsec and IKEv2 protocols are supported here, and there’s no logging of your internet activities.

IPVanish isn’t the cheapest service around, though, and there isn’t a free trial either – but there is a 7-day money-back guarantee that comes with all three pricing plans. The 1-year subscription is the best and most affordable choice. The packages available are:

(Image credit: NordVPN)

3. NordVPN

Most secure VPN

Number of servers: 5,600 | Server locations: 60+ | IP addresses: N/A | Maximum devices supported: 6

Double data encryption
Huge selection of servers
Expensive monthly billing

If security is your main concern, then NordVPN is your best pick. NordVPN’s ‘Double VPN’ feature sends users’ internet activity through two VPN servers.

On top of that, the service offers features like encrypted traffic over the Tor network, encrypted chat, dedicated IPs (at an additional cost) and a ‘zero logs’ policy.

There’s plenty of coverage with 350+ local servers for Canada, and another 1,900 south of the border, with most of them being P2P-friendly. The client is simple and straightforward, and performance is very good.

The monthly plan aside, NordVPN is an affordable VPN, and one that offers a 3-day free trial of the service, plus you get a 30-day money-back guarantee.

On the downside, there’s no way to cancel your subscription aside from having to get in touch with customer support. (Ed: you can now cancel the recurring subscription directly from the "My Account" panel). The limited three-year plan offers fantastic savings if you are looking for something longer-term. The packages available are:

(Image credit: Future)

4. Hotspot Shield

Fastest VPN

Number of servers: 2,500+ | Server locations: 70+ | IP addresses: N/A | Maximum devices supported: 5

Strong privacy policy
Fast download speeds
Expensive monthly plan
Limited configurability

Hotspot Shield has servers in Canada and the US that deliver blazing speeds. In tests, we found our latency, as well as upload and download speeds, were all a bit higher than our normal rates without a VPN, which is pretty impressive.

The client is easy-to-use but has very little in the way of configuration options. On the security front, Hotspot Shield offers some nifty additional features like private browsing and virtual location change. The privacy policy clearly states that any browsing or connection information which might be recorded during a VPN session will be deleted when that session ends.

If you're hoping to watch BBC iPlayer from across the Atlantic, Hotspot isn't looking like the option for you. When we tested it last, we couldn't unlock that empire of programming.

Hotspot Shield offers a choice of three price plans with a 45-day money-back guarantee and the 2-year plan provides the best value. The packages available are:

(Image credit: Shutterstock)

5. Cyberghost

Best balance between performance and price

Number of servers: 5,700+ | Server locations: 110+ | IP addresses: N/A | Maximum devices supported: 7

Feature-packed clients
Large number of servers
Clunky desktop interface
Expensive monthly subscription

This Romanian/German provider offers over 140 servers in Canada and another 530+ in the US, which should be more than enough to find a good and reliable connection since the performance is good too. The provider offers quality clients with plenty of features for all major operating systems. However, desktop users might find that the interface can be irritating and overall it could have been better.

On the security and privacy front, Cyberghost uses all the standard protocols with 256-AES encryption and the privacy policy is clear and straightforward, stating that the provider doesn't log any activities.

Apart from the expensive monthly plan, the service is affordable, plus you have a 45-day money back guarantee. Out of four plans, the limited 3-year plan offers the best value if you don't mind the commitment. The packages available are:

How to choose the best Canada VPN

We’ve already covered the basics of what you should be looking for: strong security and encryption, and a watertight privacy policy. Server coverage is another important consideration, because more options mean a better chance of getting a fast and reliable connection.

As ever, in an ideal world, the VPN client should be straightforward and user-friendly. Also, be sure to check the number of simultaneous connections supported, as it’s always a boon to be able to use multiple desktop PCs and mobile devices with your VPN.