This time around, I reviewed SurfEasy and checked out their VPN services to see how they compared to some of the competition.
- unlimited bandwidth
- compatible with most operating systems
- ultra-secure connection
- lowest prices
- not compatible with Linux
- no refunds for VPN services
Overall Score: 88/100
SurfEasy is one of those VPNs that absolutely takes the cake – it’s fast, it’s reliable, comes with great support, and is at one of the lowest prices you’re going to find.
To get SurfEasy, sign up here: SurfEasy
Internet security is a hot topic these days, bringing in a lot of geo-political elements, as well as cybercrime issues, that many of us prefer not to think about.
Don’t let the media hype fool you though – there is absolutely nothing inevitable about government censorship or surveillance.
You can get around these things, and it’s a lot easier than you might think.
Using a VPN is a simple and effective way to not only circumvent content blocks, but protect your privacy from hackers and government snoops.
Using ultra-secure encryption and IP address blocking technology, you can have a truly anonymous connection.
There are a lot of VPNs out there to choose from, and to someone new to the concept the process of sorting through the duds to get to the good ones can seem a bit baffling.
Here I’ll show you the ins and outs of these services, as well as review SurfEasy, to see just what kinds of features they have to offer their customers.
By the end of this, you’ll have all of the knowledge you need to be a cutthroat shopper. Let’s get into it.
Will SurfEasy Work on My Operating System?
Number one on your list for weeding out the duds should be operating system compatibility. If their software isn’t going to work on all of your devices, there’s no need to go any further.
SurfEasy is compatible with Windows, Mac, iOS, and Android systems, so it’s great for people that have both home and mobile connections they’d like to secure.
The only commonly used system you can’t really use their software on is Linux.
Rating: 4.5/5 – Works on everything but Linux
What Kind of Features Does SurfEasy Have?
A VPNs feature encompass a wide variety of things, from bandwidth limitations to the number of connections you can have.
I’ll line out just what all these mean to you, and what you can expect to get out of a great VPN provider. Then we’ll see what SurfEasy has to offer their customers.
Feature #1: Multiple Connections
Since most of us have more than one Wi-Fi enabled gadget in our arsenal, the ability to connect the VPN we choose to more than one device at a time is pretty important.
Most VPNs offer at least two simultaneous connections to their users.
SurfEasy allows up to five simultaneous connections – plenty to cover your devices, and anyone else in the house that needs the protection their service has to offer.
Rating: 5/5 – Up to 5 connections!
Feature #2: Money Back Guarantee
This one’s pretty straightforward – are they going to give you your money back if you ask?
A money back guarantee is a sign of good faith from any company, and lets you know that they really believe in what they’re selling you.
The very best ones offer at least 2 weeks to claim a refund, so shoot for somewhere in that area.
Though SurfEasy has a 30 day guarantee on their actual Browser, their VPN software is 100% nonrefundable. But hey, at least it’s in black and white.
Most companies aren’t nearly as upfront about their return policy, and SurfEasy does in fact offer refunds on some of their other online products, so they get points for that.
Rating: 3/5 – Clearly defined refund policy
Feature #3: Number of Servers
The number of servers a VPN has is pretty important, so make sure the one you sign up with doesn’t have anything less than 50 locations to choose from.
The more they have, the more likely it is that your connection stays fast. Also make sure they have at least one location in your area, so you can get the most reliable connection possible.
SurfEasy only has ten server locations, but despite this, they have them located all over the world, so chances are there’s one near you, and you should have no trouble at all connecting.
Rating: 4/5 – Good distribution of servers
Feature #4: Referral Program
This is a feature you may not see a whole lot of, so don’t be too discouraged if every VPN you look at is missing it.
However, it’s definitely a nice one to have, as it can save you some serious dough.
Basically, referral programs allow customers to cash in on free or discounted services when they send new customers to the company.
I was pleasantly surprised to see that SurfEasy does in fact have a referral program! With their free VPN service, you get 500 MB of extra data per friend you refer to them.
Talk about cool – and a brilliant way to get their name out there to new customers.
Rating: 5/5 – Extra data for referring friends
Feature #5: Data Logging
Yuck, data logging, don’t you just hate those two words? This is the practice of storing users’ internet activity, and let me be clear: it’s not anything a VPN provider has any business doing.
The point of these things is anonymity and privacy, and data logging definitely violates that.
With SurfEasy, they’re really upfront about the information they store, and what they don’t. In short, the data and websites you visit are never stored.
However, they do maintain records for bandwidth analyzation, and legally required information in the US for law enforcement agencies.
However, your data and sites are never logged and stored.
Rating: 5/5 – Only store what they’re legally required to
Feature #6: Bandwidth
Bandwidth refers to the amount of data you’re given. For most VPN providers, this is completely unlimited.
If you’re big into watching TV shows online, or do anything with downloading, make sure that you don’t have any caps on your bandwidth with whichever provider you end up going with.
Though they do have a cap of 500MB with their free VPN service, all of SurfEasy’s paid service plans are completely free of bandwidth limitations.
Rating: 5/5 – Unlimited bandwidth with paid services
How Secure Is It?
With any VPN, security is typically the thing they pride themselves the most on.
Though there are a lot of different features out there that some providers can offer to really boost your security, the main thing you want to look at is encryption.
They’ll either be running 128 or 256-bit – make sure it’s 256 for the strongest military grade encryption available.
Additionally, it’s also nice to be able to adjust your security settings a bit to optimize your connection.
The stronger encryption tends to bog things down a bit, so being able to raise or lower your security levels depending on what you’re doing is always nice.
SurfEasy offers the strongest encryption available with their 256-bit OpenVPN connection.
This is the same strength of encryption that the US military uses to protect classified information, and it is airtight.
Rating: 5/5 – Military grade encryption
What’s the Set Up Process Like?
Though VPNs are incredibly simple and easy to use, not everyone’s heard of them.
It’s easy to get turned off of this kind of thing with complicated set ups, so setting up your connection should be as simple as downloading and installing the software.
Manual configurations are an unnecessary hassle. With SurfEasy it’s every bit that simple.
Once you set up your account on their website, you’ll be directed to a page to download the software that’s compatible with your operating system.
Once downloading is complete, just run the installation wizard, and you’re in business.
Rating: 5/5 – Super straightforward set up
Is it Easy to Use?
Once you get the software installed and running, using the VPN should be every bit as simple.
If the software is overly complicated, or you have to dig into your device’s network connection settings, the software isn’t doing its job for you.
SurfEasy has really user-friendly software that anyone can figure out.
To connect, you can either use the optimized server connection that they provide, or select a server location on your own from the drop down menu. Then hit connect, and you’re secure!
Rating: 5/5 – User-friendly software
Using SurfEasy is a real time saver, because you only ever have to log in once. Even after shutting the program down and restarting it, there’s no e-mail/password combination required.
If you decide you’d like to try your luck with a server in Japan instead of Germany, switching is super easy. Just disconnect from your current server, select your new one, and hit connect.
The only thing that could be better here would be a real-time display of the traffic on the server, so you can pick the one with least amount of data being used.
What If I Need Help?
Customer service is definitely the most important thing to me, no matter what it is that I’m buying.
This is particularly true with services, because I want to know that if and when I have technical issues, my satisfaction is going to be a priority.
The most important part of great customer service is their availability.
Make sure that whoever you go with has round the clock support, so you’re not having to wait over a long weekend for help with technical issues.
Though SurfEasy’s support team is available 7 days a week, their hours are limited.
In theory, you should still get a response within 24 hours, but contacting them at the close of their day means waiting overnight for assistance.
Rating: 4/5 – Support available 7 days a week
Most VPN providers offer at least e-mail support, but it’s best if they have at least one live option for getting in touch with them. Live chat is ideal, and phone support is a nice option to have too.
SurfEasy offers both e-mail and phone support, so there is a live option for customers to get service.
You can either start a ticket with their support team on their website, or e-mail directly from your personal e-mail account. Either way, replies land right in your inbox.
Rating: 4.5/5 – E-mail and phone support
Customer Support Test
To really know just how a company treats their customers, you just have to get in there and test them out.
I contacted SurfEasy both by phone and e-mail, once during the evening and once during typical business hours, to see how quickly they responded, and how helpful their staff were.
E-mail Support Test #1 – Saturday/4:55 p.m.
My first customer service request went out via SurfEasy’s support ticket system on their website.
It took quite a while to get a response though – over 15 hours. When I did get service though, it was really helpful, and they answered all my questions.
Result: 15 hours 25 minutes
Rating: 4/5 – Great support
E-mail Support Test #2 – Saturday/11:47 p.m.
My second e-mail inquiry went out much later, but I did get a bit of a faster response this time around (time zone differences?).
Once again, their support was very polite and helpful, and got me on my way without having to ask further questions.
Result: 8 hours 12 minutes
Rating: 4/5 – Could be faster
Phone Support Test #1 – Saturday/1:47 p.m.
I was really happy with SurfEasy’s phone support. I caught them during their business hours, and got help almost instantaneously.
The staff was really friendly and helpful, and the best part was, there was no annoying phone menu to navigate. A+++.
Result: 22 seconds
Rating: 5/5 – Fast and friendly service
Phone Support Test #2 – Saturday/10:56 p.m.
My second phone support test results were pretty predictable, since I was sure that I would fall outside of their support hours. Naturally, I couldn’t get a response at this hour.
Result: No response
Rating: 0/5 – No support at this time
I had no trouble at all getting high quality service from SurfEasy, but their limited support hours meant service was rarely instantaneous.
I would love to give these guys a better score in this category because they were just really helpful, but the long wait times for the e-mail support kind of broke them in this category.
I can appreciate the professionalism, but no 24/7 support for me is kind of a deal-breaker.
Overall Support Rating: 13/20 – Always professional
How Fast is SurfEasy?
The speed of a connection can really make or break your relationship with a VPN provider.
Too slow and you’re pulling your hair out trying to watch an episode of Weeds without buffering every two minutes, so it needs to be fast, no matter what.
I ran two speed tests to see how SurfEasy compared to my standard home connection. Here’s what I ended up with:
When you use a VPN, the encryption slows down your connection a bit, and that’s just to be expected – you give a little for the security.
However, I was blown away with how fast SurfEasy was. The most I can handle my connection slowing down by is around 2 Mbps, and SurfEasy was less than one!
Totally impressive, and definitely fast enough for streaming and downloading.
Rating: 5/5 – One of the fastest VPNs
How Much Does SurfEasy Cost?
The wonderful thing about VPNs is how affordable they are.
Even with the very best ones, you shouldn’t be paying more than $15 per month, and many are significantly cheaper than that even.
I was really impressed with how affordable SurfEasy’s plans were. Not only do they have a free option, but their max price is less than $4 per month.
Definitely one of the cheapest VPNs I’ve ever seen.
Rating: 5/5 – Super low prices
The X Factor
This last category has a lot to do with how a VPN provider presents themselves in terms of professionalism and sophistication.
Since this is a service rendered completely online, you need to feel comfortable with who you’re giving your money to.
I was really impressed with SurfEasy on this level. Their website is clean and well organized, with all the right information there so you can make an informed decision.
Everything is really well-worded and professional, and the whole company just comes across as very legitimate and professional.
Rating: 10/10 – Informative and professional site
With any luck, I’ve turned you into one lean mean VPN shopping machine.
With all of this information, you’re ready to get the best deal you can, and tell snazzy marketing campaigns to cut to the chase already. Let’s see how SurfEasy did in our review:
- compatible with most operating systems
- up to 5 simultaneous connections
- worldwide selection of servers
- referral program for data boosts
- no activity logging
- unlimited bandwidth with paid plans
- strongest encryption available
- easy to set up
- user-friendly software
- phone and e-mail support available
- support available 7 days a week
- super-fast connection
- low monthly rates
- professional and upfront about their services
- not compatible with Linux
- no refunds on VPN services
Overall Score: 88/100
I was actually really impressed with SurfEasy – their connection was incredibly fast, their software was a breeze to use, and their support blew me away with their professionalism (and honestly, just the fact that they were real people fluent in English!). This is a VPN that has an incredible price for what you get – unlimited bandwidth, secure browsing, access to blocked content. . . Seriously incredible.
So what are you waiting for? With a VPN this good and this cheap, there’s no reason to leave your data vulnerable for another second.