Why paying for a VPN with lifetime subscription is wrong

Milan Stanojevic – deputy editor-in-chief

  • If a VPN provider offers you a lifetime subscription at unbeatable prices, you should take this request with a large grain of salt.
  • Most reputable VPN providers offer monthly, yearly or usually three-year plans.
  • Lifetime non-subscription VPNs are constantly trying to evolve their service, while lifetime VPN providers may try to downsize their offerings.
  • Read our full guide to learn more about lifetime VPN subscriptions.

The next time you come across an offer for a lifetime VPN subscription, remember the old saying : If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

To understand why these offers are at best a bad investment and at worst a scam from a dishonest reseller, keep these simple things in mind:

What is the business model of a VPN provider?

Setting up and managing a VPN is not a given. To do this, a company must first develop applications for different platforms, set up and maintain servers in different countries, guarantee the security of its servers, both physical and online, all before spending money on marketing, certification and maintenance.

All these costs are not a one-time investment, so the company needs a continuous cash inflow. If it starts offering a lifetime subscription, it will have immediate cash flow, but less cash flow after that.

Relying on the continuous growth of the number of users is not a cost-effective solution either, as it puts pressure on the servers, requiring regular updates. It’s a positive feedback loop that will eventually break.

Why would the service be good if there is no incentive?

All subscription services work on the same principle: Customer loyalty. Make sure your customers are satisfied and continue to pay for your services. If the service is poor, your customer will switch to your competitor and give them money. It’s simple, isn’t it?

If you pay a lifetime subscription upfront, what is the incentive for a VPN provider to keep their service up to date? You already have your money, so customer loyalty is no longer an issue.

This allows a VPN provider to offer non-standard services to its customers. They can complain, but why should they change anything? Again: You’ve already paid, you can’t cancel it, and there’s no risk to the company. Worst case scenario, you go to another provider, but you pay again for a new service.

What is the duration of your lifetime VPN subscription?

Just because the ad talks about a lifetime subscription doesn’t mean you can use the service for the rest of your life. There is no guarantee that a VPN provider will still be around in 5 or 10 years. As companies come and go, it is more likely that the provider you paid for a lifetime VPN subscription will be out of business in the near future.

At the risk of sounding cynical: Always be wary of offers that promise you a lump sum for life. If you’re lucky, you’ll get poor service and in the worst case scenario, the VPN provider will disappear one day.

You should always keep this in mind, as more than 20,000 businesses go bankrupt every year. This doesn’t necessarily mean that your VPN provider will do it, but you should always be prepared for the worst.

The best service is always around the corner

In such a competitive industry, VPN providers always try to lower prices or provide better service to their customers. This in turn comes down to customer loyalty. If you are permanently blocked on a particular provider, you can be sure that you will not be able to benefit from new technological developments.

The advantage of limited plans is that you can eventually abandon them and choose a better offer or a service with features that are more important to you. Once your plan is ready, you are free to go through it.

If you’re so keen on a lifetime VPN subscription, we have to tell you that this is usually a scam. Many smaller VPN providers have used this system to make quick money to support themselves.

So, if you are so interested in legal one-time payments, you probably won’t find them. The three-year package is the most common and closest.

You need to focus on three things:

  • Pricing. Even if the service is discontinued after, say, 3 or 4 years, the subscription will pay for itself.
  • Number of devices and platforms supported.
  • Reliability of use. Numerous servers and fast bandwidth.

We have made sure to give you a list of the best VPNs that offer good value for money when it comes to long-term subscriptions. As you can see, most reputable VPN providers do not have lifetime subscriptions, but offer longer term plans. Consider a plan for one or even three years, but never fall into the trap of a lifetime scam.

Private Internet Access, like all other reliable VPN providers, does not offer a lifetime subscription. However, you can choose monthly, semi-annual or annual subscriptions. As always, you should only purchase your PIA subscription through the official website.

Once connected, you can surf securely and anonymously on all your devices. Moreover, you can bypass all geographical restrictions as you can easily connect to any of the thousands of servers around the world.

PIA has a strict no blogging policy, so your browsing habits remain private. Moreover, there is no limit to the bandwidth used.

To show you that PIA is confident that you will be satisfied with the services we provide, we offer a 30-day money back guarantee if for any reason you are not satisfied with the service. In addition, a friendly support team is on hand to answer all your questions.

Here are some of the features you can expect from using the PIA :

  •  Unlimited bandwidth
  • More than 3,000 servers in over 45 countries
  • Protects up to 10 devices simultaneously
  • Encryption of data according to military standard
  • P2P support
  • SOCKS5 proxy server included
  • And many other things…

Private Internet access

Private Internet Access offers both short-term and long-term subscriptions, so you can find the one that suits you best. Benefit now from an exceptional discount!

CyberGhost takes the best and makes the right choice in terms of price/reliability. The number of servers is greater than ever: CyberGhost has access to over 3600 servers in over 60 countries.

The site is based in Romania, so you don’t have to worry about the 5 eyes of countries where your privacy might be compromised. Some servers support Netflix streaming, while all servers support torrent.

The server speeds are well comparable to the other two in this list. At least on some servers.

In terms of functionality, CyberGhost is perhaps best known for its simplicity. The user interface is quite intuitive and in most cases only two clicks are needed to access your favorite server. It supports all major platforms and allows you to connect up to 7 devices to an account simultaneously.

It currently costs $100 for 3 years, making it less affordable than Surfshark, but slightly less expensive than NordVPN.

CyberGhost VPN

Are you looking for a VPN with a cheap long-term subscription? Try CyberGhost VPN.

NorthVPN has slowly but surely risen to the top of the food chain when it comes to VPN services. Because instead of relying on aggressive advertising, it actually provides a good service for the money invested.

The record number of servers and the fact that it is based in Panama (and not one of the five countries of the eye) make it a pretty tempting option for many users. What’s more, the NordVPN service is based on strict confidentiality, so you don’t have to worry about IP/DNS leaks or secret logs kept by the provider behind your back.

Supports up to 6 devices on one account, provides full support for torrent and streaming geographical content (including Netflix). NordVPN works on every platform imaginable and protects your PCs and portable devices.

A lifetime subscription, in Nord’s case, costs about $107 for 3 years. With a monthly share, it’s a great option. A month will cost you about $3, which is a good deal.

Consult the NorthVPN now and give it a try. The 3-year subscription comes with a 30-day money-back guarantee. You can ask for a refund if you are not satisfied with the service.

North VPN

NordVPN is one of the best VPNs on the market, and the long-term subscription is affordable.

Surfshark seems to be a jack-of-all-trades and a jack-of-all-trades. It is equipped with more than 800 servers in over 50 countries and offers the usual functionality in terms of encryption protocols.

It fully supports torrent/P2P and Netflix, as well as other streaming services that work perfectly with it. Compared to its competitors, it allows an unlimited number of devices on every conceivable platform.

Additionally, stealth mode hides your IP so successfully that even your ISP has trouble tracking it. Not only does it support an unlimited number of devices, but it also has a built-in ad blocker and a pretty strict non-blocking policy.

In terms of price, the Surfshark 36-month plan is probably the cheapest. For $70 you get a decent VPN service for 3 years.

Surface shark

Are you looking for a VPN with a cheap long-term subscription? Try Surfshark.

FAQ: Sign up for a lifetime VPN subscription

  • Is a lifetime VPN worth it?

Frankly, no. If you make a lifetime commitment to a VPN provider, you may miss out on technological improvements, better offers, or features that better meet your needs and are offered by other companies. Alternatively, we recommend longer-term plans (1 to 2 years).

  • What does a lifetime subscription entail?

A lifetime subscription means you pay once and can use the service for the rest of your life. However, don’t always rely on this information, because sometimes companies go out of business and you are left in the dark.

Editor’s note: This article was originally published in July 2019 and revised and updated in January 2021 for timeliness, accuracy and completeness.

frequently asked questions

Is Lifetime NPV worth it?

Is a free VPN reliable?

Free VPNs are just not as secure because VPN services have high bills for maintaining the hardware and expertise needed for large networks and user security. As a VPN customer, you either pay with your money for the premium service or with your data for the free services.

What is the lifetime of a VPN?

A lifetime VPN subscription can be an attractive offer. For a flat fee, you get unlimited VPN access without having to renew your subscription. The initial costs are higher than with a normal subscription, but in theory you save a lot of money in the long run.

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