Portland, Oregon is the largest city in the state and has a population of approximately 639k people. Its metro area is home to almost 2.4 million and it sits on the Columbia and Willamette rivers. The city is known for many things including its eco-friendly environment, arts, music, theatres, microbreweries, sports, and more. No matter what you plan on doing or your reason for visiting Portland, you will find something for everyone. Of course, one thing that many like to do is use public WiFi. If that is part of your plan, you will want to use a VPN first. Take a look at our list of the best VPNs for Portland.
No matter if you are going to a sporting event, museum, theatre, or even a local coffee shop, there is a good chance that local businesses will have public WiFi. While that is a great thing, the cybercriminals think it is great as well. You never know who is just waiting for vulnerable users to expose their data. When you use a VPN, you create a secure connection to the server of your choice. That will encrypt your info, therefore making it much more difficult for the would-be thieves.
The next reason to use a VPN will help you get around firewall restrictions. If you are not familiar with them, those are limits to what you can and can’t access. They are common in schools and businesses and will block you from anything they don’t think you should be able to access. Using a VPN will help you get around those restrictions as well.
And there you have the two best reasons to use a VPN while in Portland. That said, you may discover others later. From protecting your privacy to getting around geo-restrictions, using a VPN is a good idea. Now that we have told you why they are important, we will talk about what to look for and the best choices for you.
What is the best VPN for Portland?
To answer this question, we’ll consider the factors below. Then, you will see our list of the best VPNs for Portland.
- Network stability (size of network) to help avoid service disconnects
- Fast servers in the Portland area
- Ability to let you watch sports blacked out/geo-blocked content
- Apps for multi-platform mobile devices including Amazon Firestick
- No logs kept
- Strong encryption for great privacy protection
Without further delay, here is a list of the best VPN services for Portland:
ExpressVPN brings together fast VPN access with MediaStreamer which acts as a Smart DNS service to unblock access to geo-restricted content. The VPN service will help encrypt your connection and unblock live sporting events. You will even find a list of the latest live entertainment and sporting events on their website.
As you can see in the table above, ExpressVPN manages a very large VPN network. Beyond the USA, the ExpressVPN network boasts hundreds of servers in key locations to help protect their user’s privacy. You can use their network to protect your privacy, unblock censorship, and watch your favorite teams from anywhere.
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 also need to know that some cities are not shown on the recommended tab inside the client. Of course, that is not true for New York. You will want to select the “All” tab, open Americas, and then open the United States. At this point, you can select the USA – Seattle server location. As you can see, we tested a server in Seattle to Portland and the speed was 126.63 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 a 30-day money back guarantee.
Portland has many great points and many things to do. However, the closest city for IPVanish is Seattle. That is why you want to connect to a server there. When you do, you will find that the connections in the city are fast and should work just fine for your needs. That makes IPVanish one of the best choices to use while in Portland.
Along with a large footprint in the USA, IPVanish hosts servers in every continent other than Antarctica. The network has consistently been the fastest VPN in the US for our speed tests. You will find multiple server locations in countries all over the region. You can select a specific location or an individual server.
IPVanish hosts 41 servers in Seattle and you can choose to connect to any of them. They have great speeds and perform well. We tested an IPVanish server in Seattle to Portland and found the speed to be 117.07 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.
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 the US with servers located throughout the country. Members have full access to their network in the USA and beyond for a very good price.
You will find that NordVPN has perhaps the best mix of services for the price if you subscribe to a longer term account. 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.
NordVPN hosts a number of servers in Seattle (since it is the closest location to Portland). From the console, clicking on the 3 horizontal dots to the right of the country, you can locate the server area and see the percentages of the servers available. We tested the United States server in Seattle to Portland and found the performance to be 122.77 Mbps.
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 $2.99 a month with a 3-year membership.
Private Internet Access (PIA) gives users a few different options. Unlike in the past, you no longer have to set up a profile for each VPN server. Now, you can connect to any of their server locations in 28 countries. As you can see below, the PIA team has organized their servers by region, country, and city. They listed the server locations in alphabetical order by country. Once you select a location, you can connect easily to locations in Seattle.
There are a lot of torrent users who love Private Internet Access. The service includes a feature that will stop your system from communicating if the connection to their service drops. Meaning if your encrypted VPN access is dropped for any reason it will keep you safe.
PIA’s Windows client is very straightforward. You won’t find much to it as far as usage and set up goes. However, you won’t want to underestimate it. PIA offers different levels of privacy protection depending on your needs. You can control encryption levels and find the right balance between privacy and speed. As you can see, our speed test showed that PIA was running at 124.04 Mbps when connected to a Seattle server.
When it comes to their Windows client the PIA team has included an Internet kill switch. The kill switch will kill your Internet connection anytime the VPN fails. That can really come in handy for those wanting to ensure anonymity in Seattle. Private Internet Access offers VPN from just $2.50 a month.
CyberGhost was founded in 2001 by 7 enthusiastic young team members in Bucharest, Romania. Since that time the company has grown into one of the largest VPN services in the world. The team of 50+ members is focused on protecting users privacy. Robert Knapp, co-founder and CEO, continues to lead the team even after they joined the Crossrider group in 2017. Since that time the CyberGhost network has expanded quite a bit.
CyberGhost offers a nice mix of server locations, strong encryption, and the ability to unblock popular streaming services like Netflix, YouTube Red, and Amazon Prime. Some of the channels even let you unblock geo-restrictions for multiple regions. For example, you can access Amazon Prime video content in the US, Germany, or others. The Windows client also gives you the option to surf anonymously, protect Wi-Fi, torrent anonymously, unblock basic websites (Google, Facebook Instagram, etc.), and choose a server.
Since we wanted to test a server near Portland, we opened the Windows client and expanded the interface. From there you will want to click on the “All Servers” tab if it isn’t already active. Scroll down to the United States and click to the right of the star. This will bring up a full list of servers in the USA. The CyberGhost network includes a number of servers in Seattle. We connected to one of them and tested the performance to Portland. As you can see, our download speed was 100.74 Mbps.
The CyberGhost VPN client is one of our favorites. It is very easy to use and includes a number of advanced features to help protect your online privacy. They have a development team in Germany that is continually adding features to the client and mobile apps. You can sign up for full access to the CyberGhost network from just $2.75 a month during their current promotion.
We think the options we just gave you should be good, but you can always take a look at our top 10 VPN services list. We chose them based on speed, reliability, price, and security. Many providers have servers located in or around Portland. That way, you can be assured that you get the best speeds. Of course, they all have great networks. Speed is important if you plan on downloading or streaming HD content. The providers we mentioned above are the best options for doing that, no matter which popular services you want to use. Hopefully, our guide will help you make the best decision possible.