If you have done some research about VPNs, you may notice a number of different options available. One of those is called Split Tunneling. Keep in mind that this is an advanced feature, so not many providers in the community offer it. There are several advantages to using it, and we will explain more about them and what it is in a few moments. First, though, please take a look at our list of the best VPNs for split tunneling.
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Split tunneling is a feature that allows the user to decide what applications they want to go through the encrypted VPN tunnel. The truth is, not everything you do will need to go through encryption. When you choose the ones you want, you can protect what you want to instead of blanketing everything you do. Of course, you can still elect to send all traffic through the VPN, split include, or split exclude. Just remember, anything that is not included will not be protected.
As we mentioned, there are several advantages to using this feature. Because you are not using the blanketed mode, the speeds are faster for the apps that do not pass through the VPN tunnel. Other benefits include conserving bandwidth and alleviating bottlenecks. The final advantage comes from those that work from home. Using a split tunnel, in this case, allows you to still have your work connection encrypted but by split tunneling, you can view other websites or services that may otherwise be against your company’s policy.
What is the Best VPN for Split Tunneling?
We can answer this question pretty easily, as long as we look at the most important features of the service. That way, we can determine what the best VPNs for split tunneling are. Here are the criteria we are using.
- Providers that offer split-include, exclude, or both
- Ability to get around firewalls and geo-blocked content to allow access to popular streaming services and games
- Fast servers that perform well in different regions
- Ability to split traffic at the router level
- Strong encryption with military-grade components to protect you while split tunneling
- Providers that offer a strict no logs policy and support P2P / torrent users
Now, we’ll take a closer look at some of the best VPNs for split tunneling.
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. Being in the British Virgin Islands puts ExpressVPN outside the 5 eyes and 14 eyes countries. They maintain a no-log policy that has been verified through high profile legal requests over the years.
ExpressVPN manages a very large VPN network. Beyond the USA, the ExpressVPN network boasts thousands of servers in key locations to help protect user’s privacy. You can connect to their VPN network to protect your privacy, unblock censorship, and watch your favorite streaming services from anywhere.
Perhaps the biggest advantage of using ExpressVPN is their support for a wide range of devices. ExpressVPN offers custom VPN software for Windows, Mac, iOS, and Android. Connect your desktop and mobile at the same time with up to 3 simultaneous connections. You can also install the ExpressVPN web extension for Chrome or Firefox. Want to protect your entire home network with a single VPN account? If so you can use the ExpressVPN router app to set it up. The MediaStreamer feature adds Smart DNS support to devices like game consoles (PS4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, etc.), media boxes (Apple TV, Roku, Nvidia Shield TV, etc.), and Smart TVs.
ExpressVPN performed very well in our speed tests. They are a great choice for privacy and to unblock geo-restrictions. Customer support is available 24/7 to provide assistance and answer any questions. Enjoy the best VPN for less with confidence as ExpressVPN offers 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 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 Android and iOS (iPhone, iPad) devices. You can use the NordVPN browser extension for Chrome, Firefox, or Safari. NordVPN offers some advanced privacy features like double VPN, P2P servers, and dedicated IP that really help the service stand out.
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 WiFi, torrent anonymously, unblock basic websites (Google, Facebook Instagram, etc.), and choose a server.
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.
The USA is home to several popular VPN services, but none faster than IPVanish. We know from personal experience that IPVanish will work quite well no matter what region of the country you are in. Their servers are fast and the VPN service has more server locations in the United States than most VPN providers.
Along with a large footprint in the USA, IPVanish hosts servers in every continent other than Antarctica. Their VPN network has consistently been the fastest in North America in our speed tests. You will find multiple server locations in countries like the US and UK. You can select a location or get more specific by picking an individual server. IPVanish is excellent for gaming but can be hit and miss for unblocking popular streaming services.
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.
PureVPN has been in business since 2007 making them one of the oldest VPN providers on the market. Having an early start has helped them expand and innovate. PureVPN has one of the best VPN clients available on the market. They also have free apps for both iOS and Android.
Innovation is an area that helps PureVPN stand out from the pack. They continue to add new features and add-ons to the service. You can add NAT firewall, a dedicated IP address, StealthVPN browser and a special option called dedicated streaming to help speed up your performance.
PureVPN does really well in the pricing category. They have cut pricing by over 50% as the service continues to grow. You can sign up for unlimited VPN and access all their server locations from just $4.99 a month. The annual plan is a great value.
If you want other options, you can always take a look at our top 10 VPN list. However, please remember they may not all have split tunneling options. They will all work for normal purposes, though. By using our guide, find the best option to help match your needs and find the best split tunneling VPN options.