Washington District of Columbia (Washington D.C.) is the capital of the United States. Despite its’ relatively small size, it is the sixth most populated metropolitan area in the country. There are many things that make it an appealing place to visit, as well as a good place to hold conferences, conventions, and quite a few other events. If you are going to visit the area, there is a good chance you will use some form of public WiFi. However, you should not do that without using a VPN.
With all of the high-powered people, politicians, and foreign dignitaries, you’ll have many chances to use the free WiFi offered by most businesses. Sadly, others are aware of that, too. You can imagine that there are thieves just waiting to take advantage of a connection that is not secured. In fact, there may be a higher probability in the District of Columbia because of all of the high powered people. That is why using a VPN is a good idea to help secure your sensitive data and protect your privacy. No one wants to travel and get robbed.
The next reason you’ll want to use a VPN is because of geo-restrictions. These are limits placed on a user based on location. If you are traveling from overseas, keeping up with the news of your region is important. You may also want to stream content from there or access another region. Without using a VPN, you may be blocked from seeing everything you want to see. Simply connect to a server in the area you want to view and you should be ok.
Those are two of the best reasons to use a VPN but don’t be surprised if you find others. Whether it is for the crucial security it provides or the barriers you can overcome, signing up with a VPN provider is a good idea. If you agree, there are two basic things you should know.
What is the best VPN for Washington DC?
We focused on the following criteria to determine our list of the best VPNs for the city.
- Providers that will help you get around geo-blocks/sports blackouts
- High encryption levels for better privacy protection in the area
- Fast server speeds while in the city
- Network stability to stop disconnects
- We selected only VPNs that do not keep usage logs
- Mobile apps and support for Amazon Firestick devices
Without further delay, here is a list of the best VPN services for Washington DC:
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. This is true for Washington DC. You will want to select the “All” tab, open Americas, and then open United States. At this point, you can select the USA – Washington DC server location. As you can see we tested a server in DC and the speed was 117.94 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.
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 want to get a subscription for a longer length of time. 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 the DC area, specifically in Manassas, VA. 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 Manassas and the download speed was 120.68 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.
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 UK. 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 in DC, we opened the Windows client and clicked on the “Choose My Server” option. From there you can expand any country and select a specific server. The CyberGhost network includes a number of servers in Washington. We connected to one of them and tested the performance. As you can see, our download speed was 104.76 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.
Of course, Washington DC is the US Capital. We can tell you that no matter where you are in the area, IPVanish will work just fine for all of your needs. The VPN service has more server locations in the United States than the other companies in our list. This makes them our go-to VPN for Washington DC.
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 North America and Europe in our speed tests. You will find multiple server locations in countries like the US and UK. You can select a location or an individual server.
IPVanish hosts several servers in the area. We suggest selecting one that starts with “a” in the server name. In most cases, you will find the “a” servers to be the fastest. We tested an IPVanish server in Ashburn, iad.a59.ipvanish.com, and found the speed to be 98.95 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. Members are covered by a 7-day money back guarantee.
StrongVPN is headquartered in the United States and has one of the best VPN networks in the country. In the past, the company charged users based on the number of server locations and protocols they used. That has changed as StrongVPN now offers members full access to their network with hundreds of servers worldwide.
The latest addition to the StrongVPN service is the StrongDNS feature. Everyone who signs up for a StrongVPN account also receives free access to StrongDNS which is a smart DNS service used to circumvent geo-restrictions. It is a great solution for those who plan to travel outside the USA and want to access Netflix.
StrongVPN hosts several servers in Washington DC. You can not select a specific server. Instead, you will want to click on the server location drop-down and choose United States – Washington DC. We selected OpenVPN UDP for the best performance. After connecting to a server in Washington DC, we tested our speed and found it to be 41.11 Mbps.
StrongVPN has been kind in offering our visitors a 25% discount. The coupon stacks on top of their normal term discounts. You can enjoy unlimited VPN and free SmartDNS access for just $7.50 a month or $52.49 a year. The annual account works out to just $4.37 a month. New users are covered by a 7-day money back guarantee.
If you are looking for more options, please feel free to check out our top 10 VPN services list. We think you’ll be satisfied with the options we gave you above, though. They were chosen based on speed, reliability, price, and security. We also looked for providers with servers located in the Washington, DC area. 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.