Your Own VPN vs a Paid VPN: Which One to Choose?

Free vs Paid VPN

Safeguarding online activities today stands as a pivotal concern for businesses large and small.

Choosing between establishing a personal Virtual Private Network (VPN) or opting for a paid service represents a critical decision in fortifying one’s cyber defenses. While the allure of crafting a personal VPN aligns with the desire for control over online defenses, paid VPN services tout comprehensive features promising enhanced security and convenience. 

Free VPNs on the other hand (also an option) often exhibit slower speeds due to various factors. Some face constraints with server capacities, while others intentionally throttle speeds to incentivize paid subscriptions. While seeking improved streaming access via VPNs, free services might restrict available content types and volumes.

Read on for an in-depth comparison of free vs paid VPN where we dissect the advantages and trade-offs inherent in these choices to assist in making an informed decision for your needs. 

What is a VPN?

A VPN acts as a secure tunnel between your device and the internet. It encrypts your data, safeguarding it from prying eyes and potential hackers.

Essentially, it functions as a shield, ensuring your online activities remain private and protected. By rerouting your connection through servers located in different geographic regions, a VPN masks your IP address, preserving anonymity and allowing access to region-restricted content.

Moreover, a VPN serves as a versatile tool, catering to various needs. It enables secure remote access, particularly beneficial for businesses, allowing employees to connect to the company’s network from different locations. Additionally, it enhances online privacy, especially crucial when using public Wi-Fi networks where security vulnerabilities are prevalent. VPNs also aid in bypassing censorship and geo-blocks, empowering users to access content and services otherwise restricted in their location.

The Benefits of Using a VPN

The advantages of employing a VPN range from heightened security to unrestricted access to content:

  • Enhanced Security: Encrypts data, protecting it from potential hackers and malicious entities.
  • Privacy Protection: Shields online activities from ISPs, governments, and unauthorized surveillance.
  • Anonymity: Masks IP addresses, preserving user anonymity and preventing tracking.
  • Access to Restricted Content: Bypasses geo-blocks, allowing access to region-restricted websites and content.
  • Secure Remote Access: Facilitates secure connections for remote work, ensuring data safety.
  • Public Wi-Fi Safety: Safeguards data on public Wi-Fi networks, reducing vulnerability to cyber threats.
  • Circumventing Censorship: Helps bypass internet censorship and access blocked websites or services.
  • Reduced Throttling: Prevents ISPs from limiting internet speeds based on online activities.
  • P2P File Sharing Security: Ensures secure file sharing and downloads through P2P networks.
  • Protection for Online Transactions: Secures sensitive information during online transactions, enhancing financial safety.

The Types of VPNs

There are several types of VPNS, among them:

1. Remote Access VPN: Designed for individuals or employees working remotely, it allows secure access to a private network from anywhere, ensuring data confidentiality and integrity.

2. Site-to-Site VPN: Ideal for connecting multiple offices or networks in different locations, establishing a secure link over the internet, often used by businesses for inter-office communications.

3. Client-Based VPN: Installed on individual devices, these VPNs provide secure access to a specific network, commonly used by employees for remote work or accessing company resources.

4. Tunneling VPN: Focuses on creating secure pathways (tunnels) for data transmission through encryption, ensuring data privacy and security over public networks.

5. MPLS VPN: Operates on Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS) networks, offering a high level of security and performance for interconnecting various locations within a private network.

Your Own VPN

Creating your personal VPN involves setting up a network using dedicated hardware or software solutions. This approach offers unparalleled control and customization over security protocols, encryption standards, and server configurations. 

You dictate every aspect of the VPN, ensuring tailored settings that match your specific needs. However, this route demands technical expertise in setting up and maintaining the infrastructure. 

Users opting for a personal VPN typically invest in hardware and devote time to ongoing maintenance, making it more suitable for individuals seeking complete control over their VPN experience and prioritizing privacy above convenience.

Free VPN

Free VPN services offer accessibility without requiring financial commitment. They are easily accessible to users looking for basic online anonymity. However, these services often come with limitations. Data caps, reduced speeds due to overcrowded servers, and potential privacy concerns due to logging user data or displaying ads are common drawbacks. Consequently, the reliability, security, and overall performance of free VPNs may be compromised. While they provide a level of privacy and access to geo-restricted content, these services may not meet the standards of users seeking robust security and seamless performance.

Paid VPN

Opting for a paid VPN service involves a subscription fee but ensures a higher level of security, reliability, and performance. These services typically come with an extensive server network spanning various locations globally, offering optimized speeds and reliable connections. 

Additionally, paid VPNs often provide feature-rich solutions, including dedicated customer support, advanced security features, and user-friendly interfaces. The subscription fee grants access to a service that prioritizes user privacy, ensures encryption standards, and frequently updates its infrastructure to maintain optimal performance and security. 

Paid VPNs are typically favored by users valuing convenience, reliability, comprehensive online protection, and a hassle-free experience.

Own VPN vs Paid VPN: What to Look for?

When considering a VPN, understanding the nuances between creating your personal VPN and opting for a paid service is critical. Each presents unique features and considerations that impact security, performance, accessibility, and support.

Below is a comparison table to help you make that decision:

AspectYour Own VPNPaid VPN
Security and PrivacyOffers complete control over encryption protocolsEmploys military-grade encryption, strict no-logging policies
CostIncurs hardware setup costsSubscription fees varying per provider
Speed and PerformanceReliant on user’s hardware and setupProvides high-bandwidth connections, optimized performance
Server LocationsLimited by user’s configured serversBoasts extensive global network with diverse server locations
Access to Geo-blocked ContentLimited access based on user-configured serversEnables bypassing geo-restrictions, access to wider content range
Customer SupportTypically lacks dedicated supportOffers comprehensive assistance for setup, troubleshooting
Downtime and ReliabilityPotential downtime due to user-managed infrastructureEnsures high reliability, minimal downtime for consistent service

Choosing between a personal VPN and a paid VPN depends on factors like technical expertise, desired level of control, budget, and the need for customer support. Personal VPNs suit tech-savvy users seeking customization, while paid VPNs offer convenience and reliability for a subscription fee.

Get the Best VPN with Perimeter 81

It’s worth noting that Paid Business VPN’s, such as those by Perimeter81 offer serious benefits including: 

  • End-to-end encryption for company devices 
  • High-speed, dedicated servers with dedicated IPs 
  • Protection of information from hackers, and competitors 
  • Data safety when sending over the network 
  • Allows remote workers to connect safely to the company network 
  • Enables simultaneous connections across mobile devices
  • Reduces the chances of a data breach
  • Reduces IT costs

If you’re looking to stay secure and protect your business, we definitely recommend using Perimeter81 Business VPN solution now.


Is a paid VPN better than a free VPN?
A complimentary VPN service is usually operated by a company or group that provides a restricted amount of data transfer speed and access to designated servers. On the other hand, premium VPN services often provide enhanced features like unrestricted bandwidth, access to various servers, and advanced security protocols.
Is it better to make your own VPN?
If you belong to this group, establishing a VPN server at home offers the optimal means to have complete authority over your data. This approach eliminates the need to rely on the VPN service’s assurances, such as the absence of logs for connected users, since as the network administrator, you’ll have full command over these configurations.
What is the downside of free VPN?
Free VPNs can have downsides, such as employing less secure encryption protocols like PPTP, which heightens the risk of security vulnerabilities. Additionally, there’s a concern regarding data theft or the potential sale of user data to third parties by some free VPNs, potentially compromising user privacy.