5 Unexpected Ways to Save Money With a VPN
Almost everyone these days knows that VPNs are great for keeping your online activity private and secure. But did you know that you could be using your VPN to save you literally hundreds on your favorite activities?
We’ve compiled a handy list of the most fun ways you can use your VPN to your advantage, saving you money and meaning you can go the extra mile whether you’re a shopaholic, movie buff or a travel addict.
1. Online Shopping
The ability to shop while still curled up in your pajamas is one of the most exciting benefits of the virtual world. The problem is, not only do you expose yourself to cybercrime every time you make an online purchase, but you are also charged according to your location.
For example, music fans wishing to subscribe to Apple Music will find that, while customers in India are only paying around $1.75 per month, those in the UK have to shell out over $13 per month for exactly the same service. Why? Because most online retailers use a system of dynamic pricing through which they change the price of an item or service depending on how much they anticipate customers in that area will be willing to pay.
By using a reliable VPN service like CyberGhost VPN, you can change your IP address to make it appear as though you’re in India, thereby securing the lowest possible subscription charges for services such as Apple Music. Clever, hey?
2. Flights and Airfares
There are a few different ways to use your VPN to save money on flights and airfares. Again, changing your location to a lower income country can save you hundreds of dollars. Booking from a country that has less means to buy non-necessities, will typically push airlines to charge less for their flight tickets.
Similarly, it can be far more cost-effective to book your flights from the airline’s country of origin. If you want to buy a flight to Brussels, you should try looking from an IP address located within Belgium. You’ll most likely pay a local’s price instead of a foreigner’s.
While these methods may not be saving you hundreds, every cent counts, especially if you’re traveling as a family. Some other useful tips on saving money include removing all your cookies and information relating to previous browsing sessions. As this data is used to establish your location and your previous online behavior, by deleting it, you’re able to reset your data and potentially gain access to cheaper flights.
3. Streaming and Netflix
If any one site knows about geoblocking, it’s Netflix and they’re really determined to keep non-US residents out of their enormous showcase of movies and TV series. Thankfully, several VPN services have managed to navigate a way through those geo-blocks, giving you access to more entertainment without shelling out more money. Of course, Netflix isn’t the only one and services such as Hulu and the Australian site Stan, all use similar means to safeguard content and raise revenue.
Regardless of where you are in the world, however, a reputable VPN service can mask your real location and give you a false IP location that can gain you access to a much wider range of shows and footage without costing you the earth.
For example, if you have a Netflix subscription but usually access the site from your home in South Africa, you’ll only gain access to around 10% of the total content. By changing your location and connecting via a VPN server based in the US, you’ll be able to access 100% of the content for the same amount of money.
With Netflix fighting hard against the ability of the VPN to access their libraries, not all VPNs are made equal and some have intermittent access to Netflix while others have none at all. This is why it’s important to research your VPN choice thoroughly before committing to a subscription. If in doubt, have a look at our top VPNs at the end of this article and opt for a tried a tested service like ExpressVPN.
4. Accessing Time-Restricted Content
In addition to giving you access to international movies and television series, a VPN can also enable you to watch time-restricted content. While this can vary considerably, in most instances, it’s a case of gaining access to live sporting events, such as the Olympics, Wimbledon, or the PGA Championships.
Depending on where you are situated, the amount of live sport you can watch varies but, in most cases, you’re restricted by pre-defined time limits that, once they come to an end, you’re simply cut off in the middle of a serve or just as a put is heading for the hole.
This is extremely frustrating which is why the more astute VPN users simply change their IP location to a different country and log back in again, picking up where they left off.
Simply use your VPN to connect to a server located close to where the game is being shown, connect and enjoy!
5. Booking Hotels and Cars
In much the same way as airlines operate, so hotels and car hire companies vary their prices depending on the audience. Rental cars, in particular, are affected by different taxes and local surcharges as well as the price of insurance within their location. This means they can vary substantially, although much of the fluctuation is down to dynamic pricing strategies.
For example, rental companies are known to charge more for foreign travelers who book online. So someone coming to NYC from Turkey for a visit, will benefit greatly from using their VPN service to switch their fake location to a server within the US, making a saving of literally hundreds of dollars on a week-long car rental.
Similarly, hotel pricing can vary dramatically depending on the location you’re booking from. Having booked your New York car rental from the USA, you would ideally then want to change your IP location to Brazil before going ahead and booking your hotels. According to our research, guests booking from South America can make savings in the region of $100 per night when securing a room at the luxury Sofitel hotel just around the corner from Times Square.
While the best VPNs will give you all these advantages, not all have the same capacity so it’s important to invest in a service that will safeguard your private data while also giving you the capacity to save money on various online services.
The best VPNs, in our opinion, are those with a strong network of servers throughout the world; guaranteed high speeds; the ability to switch locations quickly and easily; and those that provide strong customer service, so you’re not lost in cyberspace if you run into a problem.
ExpressVPN has all of these qualities and more. So what are you waiting for? Start savings money, now!