Moscow is the capital and largest city in Russia. With a population of 17.1 million people located in its urban area, it is the 15th largest city in the world. Moscow is an interesting place to visit for quite a few reasons. If you are going to travel to the area for business or pleasure, you won’t want to use public WiFi or even the internet there without using a VPN. Doing so will leave you at risk to surveillance and censorship. We’ll go into more detail in a moment. First, take a look at our list of the best VPNs for Moscow.
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In 1147, Yuri Dolgoruky and Sviatoslav Olgovich met at Moscow on the Volga River. That was the first reference to the town. In 1156, Knjaz Yury Dolgoruky fortified the town with a timber fence and added a moat. The fortifications held until Ghengis Khan’s grandson, Batu Khan burned the city and killed its inhabitants in 1237.
Since those times, there have been many things to happen in the city. Those include being the capital of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (U.S.S.R), protests, revolutions, and many more. After the fall of Communism in 1991, Moscow went into a tailspin economically. However, it has mostly stabilized and is now doing quite well. People visit the city because of business opportunities, museums, historical landmarks, fine arts, architecture, and more.
In 2012, Moscow launched its’ free WiFi system. It became available in many places from trains to parks to local businesses. While that may sound great, cybercriminals and the Russian government (called the Kremlin) monitor internet activity. By creating a secure and encrypted connection, you also make it much more difficult for thieves to compromise your data. Without one, you are vulnerable to attack. However, you may not be completely safe from other sources under some circumstances.
The second reason to use a VPN while in Moscow is because of censorship. It is well known that the Kremlin censors the internet, and you may have an issue trying to view some of your favorite sites. When using a VPN for that reason, you will connect to a server in another country. That will help you get around the censorship found in Russia.
Those are two very good reasons to use a VPN while in Moscow. However, you may realize other reasons after you sign up for service. Whether you are trying to keep yourself safe from prying eyes or want to defeat censorship, a VPN will have you covered. Now that you know why using one while in Moscow is very important, let’s take a look at what you should look for.
The way that VPNs operate is by using encryption protocols. Most services will offer you a number of protocols to choose from. The best available protocol to use is OpenVPN. That is because it has a great mix of speed and security. If you are given an option between a UDP and a TCP version of that protocol, UDP is the fastest. If you are having connection issues, the TCP version is your best choice. Though it is slower, you are less likely to have connection issues.
Moscow is a big city with many opportunities. However, their rules on privacy and censorship have caused nearly all providers to pull any servers out of the country. Because of that, IPVanish has servers located in Kiev, Ukraine. The servers located in Kiev are fast and should do the job well. Their speed makes IPVanish our top choice of services to use while in the city of Moscow.
|60||89||1,000||OpenVPN, PPTP, L2TP, IKEv2||$7.50||$58.49||7 day|
IPVanish hosts servers on every continent other than Antarctica. The network has consistently been the fastest VPN in Asia in our speed tests. You will find multiple server locations in countries all over Europe. You can select a location or an individual server.
IPVanish hosts 3 servers in Kiev, Ukraine (the closest server in the region) and you can choose to connect to any of them. We tested an IPVanish server in Kiev, iev-c03, and found the speed to be 34.14 Mbps.
When it comes to value IPVanish is hard to beat. They offer unlimited access to their VPN network and custom software for Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, Amazon Firestick and more for $7.50 a month or $58.49 a year. That works out to just $4.87 a month on the annual plan. A 7-day money back guarantee covers all new members.
With ExpressVPN, fast VPN access and MediaStreamer act as a Smart DNS service to unblock access to censored content. The service will help encrypt your connection and get around the Russian censorship rules. It is easy to see the benefits of using one while in Moscow.
|90||148||2,000||OpenVPN, PPTP, L2TP||$12.95||$99.95||30 day|
As you can see in the table above, ExpressVPN manages a very large VPN network. ExpressVPN network boasts hundreds of servers in key locations to help protect their user’s privacy. That includes locations in Ukraine (since it is the closest to Moscow). You can use their network to protect your privacy, unblock censorship, and enjoy the content you are used to seeing.
The ExpressVPN app allows you to select a server location down to the city but you can not choose a specific server. Instead, the client will select a server in your chosen location. You will want to select the “All” tab, open Europe, and then open Ukraine. At this point, you can select the servers located there. As you can see, we tested a server in Ukraine and the speed came out to 48.52 Mbps.
While ExpressVPN is sold at a higher price point than the other services in our list, the value is high given the size of their network and service features. You can connect a computer, handheld device, router, and game console (SmartDNS) with a single VPN account for just $6.67 a month with an annual subscription.
NordVPN is based in Panama which some users prefer to using a VPN company that’s actually headquartered in the United States. You will find that NordVPN has a strong presence in different parts of the world. Members have full access to their network in the region and beyond for a very good price.
|59||70||3300||OpenVPN, PPTP, L2TP||$11.95||$69.00||30 day|
You will find that NordVPN has perhaps the best mix of services for the price if you subscribe to an account for a longer term. All users have full access to their network and custom software. You can connect using the VPN client for Windows or Mac. They also have an easy-to-use mobile app for both Android and iOS (iPhone, iPad) devices
We tested the speed in Ukraine and, as you see below, the numbers are good with a download speed of 14.10 Mbps. You should have no problem doing whatever you want to do while using a server there.
Want to access streaming services like Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, or BBC iPlayer from anywhere in the world? If so NordVPN is a great choice. They are one of the only VPN services that can still unblock Netflix. You can sign up for unlimited VPN and SmartDNS service from just $3.99 a month with a 2-year membership.
The options we just gave are the best choices for Moscow, but you are welcome to take a look at our top 10 VPN list if you would like to see more options. Just be sure the provider you choose has servers located in the area. We made our decisions based on security, speed, price, and reliability. We also looked for providers with servers in the same region of the world as Moscow. That way, you can get the best available speeds. Since they all have good networks, you can’t go wrong with any choice you make. If you want to stream content, good speeds are very important. You can make the right decision for your needs by using our guide to help you.