5 Best VPNs for Germany to Stay Safe and Anonymous in 2023
You should be able to decide when your personal information is gathered online, but Germany is one of the 14 Eyes Alliance countries that collect your private data. Whistleblower Edward Snowden showed that you never know who’s watching you online in Germany.
To protect your right to online privacy, you need a VPN — but most of them can’t keep your activities secure or hidden. I tested over 40 VPNs and ExpressVPN’s TrustedServer technology makes it the best at hiding your data in Germany.
It also has the fastest speeds for seamless streaming and torrenting. Plus, you can subscribe to ExpressVPN with confidence because it comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee. If it’s not what you expected, just ask for a refund.
Quick Guide: Best VPNs for Germany in 2023
- ExpressVPN — Top VPN for Germany with TrustedServer technology to hide your data and a 30-day refund window to buy ExpressVPN without risk.
- CyberGhost — More than 1,100 servers in Germany to access local content reliably, but its monthly plans are slightly more expensive.
- Private Internet Access — MACE blocks ads and malware to give you a safer browsing experience in Germany, but torrenting isn’t allowed on its US servers.
- PrivateVPN — Dedicated IP address in Germany helps you avoid being banned by websites and avoids CAPTCHAs, but it has a relatively small server network.
- IPVanish — Protects all your devices in Germany at once with a single subscription, but it can’t unblock some streaming services.
The Best VPNs for Germany — Updated January 2023
- 3000+ servers in more than 94 countries, including 3 locations in Germany and more around Europe
- Protects your safety and privacy with military-grade 256-bit encryption, TrustedServer technology, a no-logs policy, and a Network Lock kill switch
- Customer support includes video tutorials, 24/7 live chat, and email
- Connect up to 5 devices at the same time
- Fully-verified 30-day money-back guarantee policy
ExpressVPN is the top VPN for Germany because it uses TrustedServer technology to regularly wipe clean its RAM-based servers. This prevents hackers from being able to compromise servers even if they had physical access to them. Your data is kept private and secure with other key ExpressVPN features, like:
- A no-log policy to make sure none of your data is recorded
- A Network Lock that automatically disconnects devices from the internet during unsteady connections to prevent accidental exposure of real location and IP addresses
- DNS leak prevention keeps your IP address hidden while you use ExpressVPN
- Military-grade AES 256-bit encryption with Perfect Forward Secrecy to constantly change the encryption keys, making you nearly impossible to hack.
Plus, the VPN is headquartered in the British Virgin Islands which isn’t a member of the 5, 9, or 14 Eyes Alliance that shares your data with intelligence agencies in other countries.
Many VPNs default to the older OpenVPN protocol, but ExpressVPN offers its very own patented option called Lightway. My testing found that Lightway is about 9% faster because it contains only 1,000 lines of code (compared to OpenVPN’s 70,000 lines). Lightway also used noticeably less battery on my phone compared to OpenVPN when I left it on for navigation.
During streaming tests, servers in Frankfurt and Nuremberg were able to access a variety of live channels and TVs such as:
|Netflix Germany||Norddeutscher Rundfunk||Mitteldeutscher Rundfunk||ProSieben||n-tv||Das Erste|
Connecting to a server in the UK allows access to BBC iPlayer while servers in the US unblock Netflix US, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, HBO Max, Disney+, and more.
Servers in faraway countries are usually slower due to the distance your data has to travel, but ExpressVPN averaged 110Mbps during my tests. This was fast enough for 4K video even on distant server locations. Speeds topped out at 920Mbps on servers in Germany, Denmark, and Belgium.
Despite having such advanced features, ExpressVPN is very easy to use. I installed the app and connected to the Frankfurt server in under 5 minutes. And since it’s compatible with Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, and other common platforms, it works on all the devices I travel with in Germany. I also like that you get up to 5 connections and you won’t lose your connection — servers were always reliable even when I tested on multiple platforms at once.
Although ExpressVPN is more expensive than other VPNs I tested, its fully-audited TrustedServer network is worth the money. It gives me peace of mind that my online activities in Germany stay safe and private, all without sacrificing super-fast speeds.
For the best value, check out the 1-year + 3 months plan for $6.67 per month when you subscribe to ExpressVPN for Germany. It comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee that I tested myself by asking for a refund via 24/7 live chat. My request was approved in minutes and I had my money back in 5 days.
ExpressVPN is compatible with: Windows, Mac, Linux, Android, iOS, Chrome, Firefox, Amazon Fire TV, Fire TV Stick, Kindle Fire, Nook HD, and more.
January 2023 Update! ExpressVPN has dropped prices for a limited time to a crazy $6.67 per month for the 1-year plan (you can save up to 49%) + 3 months free! This is a limited offer so be sure to grab it now before it's gone. See more information on this offer here.
- 9633+ servers in 91 countries, including 1,100+ in Germany
- Military-grade 256-bit encryption, a kill switch, a strict no-log policy, and it’s based in privacy-friendly Romania
- Get support via 24/7 live chat, and online ticket system, and in-depth guides
- Use 7 devices in Germany simultaneously
- 45-day money-back guarantee on the 2-year + 2 months subscription
CyberGhost has over 1,100 servers in Germany to give you more options for fast and reliable connections, with no slowdowns from user congestion. Having one of the biggest networks in Germany also gives you more IP addresses than almost any other VPN. This makes them harder for websites to block.
Another advantage of CyberGhost is its menu of specialized servers in Germany and other countries for streaming, torrenting and gaming. Optimized servers are available for:
|ZDF||TV Now||DAZN||German YouTube||ARD|
|Netflix Germany, US, and more||Hulu||Disney+||HBO Max||Amazon Prime
Video Germany, US, and more
The menu of optimized CyberGhost streaming servers loaded shows immediately with almost no buffering, even in 4K. Regular servers took about 2 seconds longer to access a channel and were about 7% slower, although during tests they were still fast enough for smooth HD.
Unlike many VPNs, CyberGhost is compatible with the super-fast WireGuard protocol. My speeds went from 98Mbps (on the default OpenVPN) to 108Mbps with WireGuard enabled on the server in Frankfurt. This protocol also used less data and battery on my phone, so I didn’t run out of power even after my day of touring Berlin and posting videos on Instagram.
It also has automatic WiFi protection that starts whenever CyberGhost detects a wireless network. This kept me safe when my phone communicated with random German internet hotspots while I traveled. These are popular targets for hackers because they’re usually poorly secured.
Since CyberGhost is headquartered in privacy-friendly Romania, the government doesn’t ask the VPN to collect personal data. The country also isn’t a member of the 5, 9, or 14 Eyes Alliance like Germany is, so no information is gathered by intelligence agencies. Additionally, the VPN has:
- A strict no-log policy to ensure none of your data is stored
- An automatic kill switch that disconnects when your German internet service is unstable
- IP leak prevention to make it impossible for third parties to find out who you are or what you did online
- Military-grade 256-bit encryption makes sure no one can hack your connection
For VPN beginners, CyberGhost is very intuitive to use. During my tests I found that servers are organized by location and purpose, which makes it easy to find the right one whether you need to optimize for privacy, streaming, or torrenting. Better yet, I tested its apps for most major operating systems such as Windows, iOS, Mac, and Android, and could connect up to 7 devices simultaneously with no instability.
If you’re living in Germany, CyberGhost’s long-term plans make more sense because the month-to-month option is a little expensive. However, the 2-year + 2 months plan is only $2.19 per month.
To try CyberGhost without risking your money, it even comes with a 45-day money-back guarantee if you get the 2-year + 2 months subscription. The process is easy — I asked for mine via 24/7 live chat and got my refund within a week.
CyberGhost is compatible with: Windows, iOS, Mac, Android, Chrome, Firefox, routers, Amazon Fire TV, some game consoles, and more.
January 2023 Update! You can subscribe to CyberGhost for as low as $2.19 per month + get extra 2 months free with the 2-year plan (save up to 83%)! This is a limited offer so grab it now before it's gone. See more information on this offer here.
- 35000+ servers in over 84 countries, including in Frankfurt and Berlin
- Uses military-grade 256-bit encryption, an ad and malware blocker, and a kill switch to protect your online security and privacy
- Online guides, 24/7 live chat, and email support
- Each account can have up to 10 simultaneous device connections
- Fully-tested 30-day money-back guarantee
PIA’s MACE blocked ads, trackers, and malicious websites while I browsed the news on Der Spiegel and used German mobile apps. MACE also refused to load malicious links in several spam emails I sent to myself as a test, confirming it keeps your data safe from phishing scams. Even better, web pages load faster with MACE because it stops background trackers, which stay invisible but take up bandwidth.
The VPN also allows several of its security and privacy features to be customized like:
- Military-grade 256-bit encryption is the most secure but slightly slower, best for online shopping in Germany. 128-bit has faster speeds because it takes less time to secure your data. I recommend this for data-heavy activities like watching videos.
- There’s a standard kill switch and an advanced kill switch to prevent devices from connecting to the internet without the VPN connected. This gives you extra privacy protection when you lose network contact, like when your phone is switching WiFi networks as you travel in Germany.
- Integrated IP leak prevention ensures your data is always encrypted.
- The no log policy means that none of your data will be vulnerable to hacking or eavesdropping.
For complete anonymity, you can even subscribe to PIA with cryptocurrency. It accepts Bitcoin, Bitpay, Bitcoin Cash, Ethereum, and Litecoin. Alternatively, you can pay anonymously with gift cards from major brands that are available in Germany like Nike, Starbucks, and MAC Cosmetics.
Its server in Frankfurt accessed several lag-free episodes of Late Night Berlin on ProSieben during testing, and could also access:
|ZDF||TV Now||TV Now||ARD|
|Netflix Germany||DAZN||German YouTube||Amazon Prime Video Germany|
In terms of bypassing geoblocks on other streaming services PIA is able to access all major streaming services like Netflix US, Hulu, HBO Max, Disney+, and more.
Downloading torrents is illegal in Germany and PIA doesn’t allow P2P connections on US servers. But if you’re traveling abroad, PIA’s servers in Switzerland enable safe and private torrenting. It’s also possible with a server in Romania or another European country that’s not part of the 5, 9, or 14 Eyes Alliances.
Despite its one downside of not including US-based torrent servers, PIA has one of the best values of any premium VPN for Germany as the 2-year + 2 months plan is only $2.19 per month. You can also simultaneously connect up to 10 devices running Windows, Android, iOS, macOS, or other common operating systems.
In the event you still aren’t sure, you don’t have to risk anything to try PIA for Germany as it comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee. I asked for a refund via 24/7 chat support and then had to fill out a form, and received my money 5 days later.
PIA is compatible with: Windows, Android, iOS, Mac, Linux, Chrome, Firefox, some game consoles, and more.
January 2023 Update! For a limited time only, save 82% with the 2-year plan + get an additional 2 months free! Hurry and check out the deal here!
- 200+ servers in 63+ countries, including in Frankfurt and Berlin
- Stay safe and anonymous on German sites with military-grade 256-bit encryption, a kill switch, and zero-logs servers
- Customer support via live chat, email, and remote desktop
- Connect to servers in Germany on 10 devices at once
- 30-day money-back guarantee on all plan types
PrivateVPN has free dedicated IP servers in Germany to give you your own IP address that’s less likely to be blocked. VPNs usually share IP addresses among users, so when other people use them for illegal activities they get blacklisted. Dedicated IP addresses can also prevent annoying CAPTCHAs logging into services like your Deutsche bank account.
During tests on PIA’s servers in Germany:
- PIA’s kill switch automatically disconnected the internet to protect my data when my WiFi connection became unsteady
- My IP address was never revealed to third parties due to its DNS and IPv6 leak protection
- Although based in Sweden (a member of the 14 Eyes Alliance), the VPN didn’t log my identity or usage data
- My connection was protected with military-grade 256-bit encryption
During streaming tests, PrivateVPN could access shows on:
|Netflix Germany, US, and more||Hulu||Disney+||Amazon Prime Video Germany, US, and more|
There are PrivateVPN apps for most operating systems such as Windows, Mac, iOS, and Android, so you can use it on most operating systems. And since I never travel in Germany with more than 3 of my devices at once, PrivateVPN’s limit of up to 10 connections was plenty for my needs.
Although it has a smaller network than ExpressVPN and other VPNs on this list, I didn’t experience slowdowns due to user congestion on PrivateVPN servers in Frankfurt or Berlin. Plus, PrivateVPN has one of the best monthly VPN plans and is even more affordable at $2.00 per month with the 3-year option.
This VPN also has a 30-day money-back guarantee, so you have some time to test it for yourself. After you try PrivateVPN’s servers in Germany, just ask for a refund if it doesn’t meet your needs. I asked for my money back via email and received my money in 5 days.
PrivateVPN is compatible with: Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS, Android, routers, and more.
January 2023 Update! PrivateVPN has dropped prices for a limited time to a crazy $2 per month with the 3-year plan (you can save up to 85%)! This is a limited offer so be sure to grab it now before it’s gone. See more information on this offer here.
- 2000+ servers in at least 75 countries, including 50+ in Frankfurt
- Military-grade 256-bit encryption, an automatic kill switch, and DNS leak protection keep your data hidden and secure
- 24/7 live chat, FAQs, setup guides, and email support
- Allows unlimited simultaneous device connections in Germany
- 30-day money-back guarantee for quick and easy refunds
IPVanish is the only VPN I tested for Germany that allows unlimited connections. This is especially useful if you travel while working and need to secure more than a few devices at the same time. Even on 12 platforms at once, my connections stayed reliable during tests and never slowed down from using excessive bandwidth.
Another thing that stood out is that IPVanish owns its entire network and doesn’t rent servers in Germany from a data center. This minimizes the number of people who could potentially access it and compromise its security. Plus, hackers won’t be able to see your connection because IPVanish has:
- 256-bit military-grade encryption
- DNS leak prevention.
- A kill switch that protects all your sensitive information even during disconnections
- A strict no-log policy
During tests IPVanish worked well with Kodi, allowing the use of add-ons without third-party eavesdropping or German advertisers collecting private information. Of the major streaming sites, IPVanish’s servers can unblock shows on Netflix US and Germany along with other services and channels like:
|Disney+||Hulu||Amazon Prime Video Germany, US, and more|
BBC iPlayer, Prosieben and RTL weren’t always accessible with IPVanish during tests, so ExpressVPN is a better option to reliably access a full selection of German TV channels.
If you have devices that are Windows, Mac, iOS, or Android-based, IPVanish has easy-to-use apps. The most budget-friendly option is the 1 year subscription for $3.99 per month. Plus, if you’d like to give IPVanish a try for Germany, it comes with a risk-free 30-day money-back guarantee.
If you’re not happy with the service, you can ask for a refund. I canceled my subscription by logging into my account and filling out a form, and received my money within a few days.
IPVanish is compatible with: Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, Chrome, and more.
How to Choose the Best VPN for Germany
I tested all the top VPNs in 2023 to help you evaluate which is best for your needs in Germany. Here are my criteria:
- Strong security and privacy features — Regardless of whether you live in Germany or are just traveling there, you need a VPN with military-grade AES 256-bit encryption. Also look for fully audited and open-sourced tunneling protocols, a strict no-log policy, and built-in data leak protection.
- Global server network — The more countries and cities a VPN has servers in, the more global content it can access. Top VPNs can unblock shows on ZDF, Norddeutscher Rundfunk, ARD, 7TV, and other regional channels.
- Fast speeds — For online activities that require lots of data (like streaming and gaming), you need fast speeds to avoid lag. It’s an extra plus if a VPN can resist bandwidth throttling by ISPs.
- Apps for popular devices — Check if the VPN is compatible with all your devices and allows multiple simultaneous connections. Features differ on each version of a VPN app, so make sure the version you need has the features you want.
- Customer support — Contact the VPN’s support team to see how responsive, knowledgeable and helpful they are before you buy the VPN. Live chat and email support should be available 24/7.
3 Easy Steps to Get a VPN in Germany
- Download a VPN. I recommend ExpressVPN as it has the strongest security features and the fastest speeds for Germany.
- Connect to a server. Choose Germany in the server menu for the VPN to find the fastest local option for you automatically.
- That’s it! Now you can browse the web in Germany safely and anonymously.
FAQs on VPNs for Germany
What are some VPNs for Germany I should avoid?
It’s best to avoid free VPNs altogether and choose a premium VPN like ExpressVPN, which is proven to safeguard your online security and privacy. However, I also wouldn’t trust the following VPNs:
Hola adds your real IP address into a pool for other users to potentially access geo-restricted content, porn, and banned websites. This puts your online privacy and safety at risk, and makes you legally liable for what other people do.
Your IP address could also be blacklisted and restricted from many sites due to being flagged for suspicious activity. Plus leaving your device connected allows other people on Hola to use your WiFi and cellular data, leeching your bandwidth and slowing down your speeds.
Worse yet, you’ll never get speeds fast enough for streaming or torrenting. Finally, Psiphon doesn’t unblock most geo-restricted services since its IP addresses are constantly being blacklisted.
SuperVPN logs your IP address, browser type, and operating system. It’s also not transparent about whether or not it logs the websites you visit, which is quite suspicious. When you install the SuperVPN mobile app, you’ll see an unusual request for permission to access your phone and stored files. Worst of all, this VPN had an incident where user data was leaked and sold on a hacker forum.
Is using a VPN legal in Germany?
Yes, it’s legal to use VPNs in Germany to protect your privacy and security. Massive amounts of your personal information are collected by third parties on the internet, so it’s important that you use a VPN on all your web-connected devices.
But VPNs can be misused to commit illegal activities. For example, torrenting copyrighted materials using a VPN is against the law, and German ISPs report you to the authorities if you’re caught. Even an accidental violation makes you criminally liable.
I don’t condone using VPNs to commit or hide crimes. Always abide by local laws and follow all terms and conditions for any online services you’re subscribed to.
Can I use a proxy in Germany instead of a VPN?
Yes, but I wouldn’t recommend them for security and privacy reasons. Only a top VPN like ExpressVPN can fully protect your traffic with military-grade 256-bit encryption and safeguard your privacy with a kill switch, DNS leak protection, and no-log servers.
Although both proxies and VPNs hide your IP address, only VPNs send your connection through a fully encrypted tunnel to protect your data from hackers. Proxies also have varying logging policies and most of them watch your online activities. You never know what proxies do with the information they collect about you.
Furthermore, unlike ExpressVPN proxies can’t unblock streaming sites to reliably provide bufferless high-quality streaming. They’re also limited to only rerouting traffic on specific sites or apps, whereas a VPN gives a new IP address to your entire device.
How do I check if my VPN works?
This free IP address lookup tool makes it easy to confirm that your VPN is working. If you see a map location that matches your VPN server country, you have a new IP address. If the map shows your real location, your personal data is leaking. Contact your VPN’s support team to find out why.
Is it safe to use a free VPN in Germany?
No, free VPNs are too risky and restrictive to be reliable. Even the best free VPNs restrict your features or interrupt you with ads to recoup their expenses. Some free VPNs even collect and sell your private data to third parties, defeating the purpose of a VPN.
The worst “free VPNs” are actually scams that install malware on your devices. But even honest free VPN providers have small networks in Germany, if they have servers there at all. This means you’ll face bandwidth congestion, causing slower speeds.
That’s why you’re better off using a premium VPN for free. I found VPNs with money-back guarantees like CyberGhost that protect you with military-grade encryption, DNS leak prevention, and a kill switch. CyberGhost’s servers can unblock most websites, and you can just get a refund when you’re done using it.
Get a VPN (That Works) for Germany Today!
Due to rising cyberattacks in Germany, the country’s involvement in the 14 Eyes Alliance that monitors web users, and the dangers of public WiFi, you need a VPN whether you’re a German native or just a visitor to the country.
Based on my extensive tests, I recommend ExpressVPN to keep your personal data secure in Germany. It kept my IP address private while I used public WiFi at the Frankfurt airport, and its servers can unblock ZDF and most German streaming channels. Best of all, I got consistent speeds that were just as fast during my tests as when I wasn’t using a VPN, in spite of most VPNs slowing down my connections.
If you subscribe to ExpressVPN in Germany, your plan is risk-free because of its 30-day money-back guarantee. This gives you complete peace of mind since you can get a refund if you decide it isn’t the right VPN for you.