Why a VPN is essential when travelling
Can you imagine travelling without internet? I am not just referring to not using map apps or those that recommend the best places in a city. Sometimes the need is critical, such as confirming a hotel address, making a call through Whatsapp (which uses data) or showing a document on your mobile screen while going through immigration. Without hesitate, you look for the first free wifi network, connect to it and do what you need to do. But have you ever wondered: can anyone steal my data?
Chances are it never crossed your mind. Whenever a device connects to public networks, be it at an airport, cafe, restaurant, it doesn’t matter if the network has a password. There is always a chance that everything around that wifi will be monitored. Someone malicious (and there are a lot of people out there) may have access to all the websites and applications you are using and in some cases even your information. Your passwords, emails, credit cards and personal data in the wrong hands. Imagine the damage.
There is only one way to protect yourself, you need a Virtual Private Network, a VPN.
A good VPN provider assures you 2 things:
Privacy and Safety
First, because all traffic passing through your mobile phone and computer will be redirected to the VPN provider. That way, if someone is spying the Starbucks WIFI, they will only know that you visit 1 site multiple times, for example myvpn.com. This won’t make much sense and that mean hacker will turn his attention to that other user accessing his bank account or Gmail. Security is like that, you don’t need to have the technology of a military base, you just have to be better than your neighbour.
Regarding privacy, it is true that there are a lot of people working hard to protect the internet from these types of attacks (an example is the little padlock there in your browser’s address bar). But that alone is not enough. A good VPN creates an additional layer of security between you and the internet. We call this a secure tunnel and it is virtually impossible for a hacker to intercept the information that passes through it.
These two factors should be enough for everyone to use VPN. But there are several other advantages:
Access to blocked sites or services
In many countries access to the internet is not open. In China for example, no Google or Facebook sites work. When we went to Dubai, Skype was blocked. Various contents are restricted in Thailand. This practice happens to a greater or lesser extent in various parts of the world.
A VPN hides which site you are accessing. This way anyone who monitors the network (in this case the government) doesn’t know that you are checking your emails or giving those likes on Instagram.
Access restricted content.
Surely you have already tried to watch a video on YouTube and what shut by a message that the content was not available for your country. In another scenario, you might be on that long train ride and want to catch up on the your favorite series. Open the Netflix app and realize that the show is not available in the country you are.
In this case just open the app of your VPN, choose your home country and you’re done, for Netflix you are at your home. This same tip works to access catalogs around the world.
Cheapest tickets, hotels and car rentals
To prove this point, I wrote another article on how to save on travel using a VPN.
What is the best VPN for Travel?
We are very pleased with NordVPN, which we have been customers for a little over 4 years
The apps are very easy to use. Just open, enter your email and password and select the country you wanto to connect. We don’t feel any speed drop and with a single account we can guarantee the safety of 5 devices. If you’re a geek, like me, you can even put it on your home router, so everyone who accesses your home network will be protected.
They accept various forms of payment and even Bitcoin. The monthly price is less than the AOL subscription at the time of dial-up internet. And the longer the plan, the greater the discount. In addition, they do offer a free one-week trial and will refund your money if you regret it within the first 30 days.
If one day we are not satisfied, we wil certainly switch to another provider (and update here on the blog), but we will never stop using a VPN.
Can I use a free VPN?
Run away! There is no free lunch. These companies need money and for that they will sell your information to anyone who wants to pay. Choosing a company with a good reputation is highly recommended. One more point for NordVPN, known for not storing any kind of log of its users.
Security and privacy on the internet are endless topic. Your level of protection goes as high as your paranoia. One thing is for sure: When traveling, it is better to have a VPN, even if it’s bad (but paid) one than none.