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Take a look at Private Internet Access's features, pricing, and compatibility
A VPN is a smart way to protect your privacy and get more out of your browsing. But which VPN should you choose? It’s not an easy question. If you’re considering Private Internet Access, read on. I’ll tell you everything that you need to know about the Private Internet Access brand, from the features of the Private Internet Access VPN to the prices and contracts you’ll encounter when you go to sign up.
Private Internet Access is a VPN service, and it delivers all of the key features you’d expect from a VPN. If you’re familiar with how VPNs work, then you already know what this means: If you run a Private Internet Access VPN, your IP address will be hidden while you browse. The data you send during your browsing session will be encrypted. And Private Internet Access will protect you with a firewall so that unwanted connections can’t get through to you.
None of these basic features are exclusive to Private Internet Access, but they’re all must-have features for a VPN service. Using Private Internet Access, you’ll keep sites from tracking you with cookies and prevent ads from targeting you as intended. You can also use different Private Internet Access VPN servers to gives yourself an IP address from somewhere else in the world. This could allow you to bypass certain blackouts and restrictions and access websites and streaming content that isn’t available elsewhere in the world.
Beyond the basics, Private Internet Access has some nice next-level features. For starters, their server count is impressive: There are more than 15,000 options. Private Internet Access builds ad-blocking right into its VPN program, and it allows users to connect up to 10 devices at once — a pretty high number by the standards of the VPN industry.
Private Internet Access also includes some identity protection features from Identity Guard. Identity Guard is a service that helps detect identity theft issues, and Private Internet Access customers have access to some of Identity Guard’s basic data breach monitoring services.
VPNs aren’t just for computers, so it’s wise to think about all of the platforms and devices you use online before you settle on a VPN choice. Private Internet Access is pretty strong on this front — it works on all major computer operating systems and both major mobile operating systems. Here’s the full list:
Private Internet Access also offers browser extensions that put the service’s core functions right at hand within your web browser. You’ll have to use one of the browsers that support the extension, but you have some very good options:
Private Internet Access currently charges $9.95 per month for a monthly VPN subscription. Longer-term plans are regularly priced at $119.40 for an annual plan or $258.70 for 26 months (two years plus a “bonus” of two months), but these “regular” prices are almost never in effect. Instead, Private Internet Access offers deals on one- and two-year plans to try to woo long-term customers.
Private Internet Access is always running deals. You can typically expect to see steep discounts on its long-term plans. As of this writing, the two-year plan is on sale for 73% off: It costs $69.95, the equivalent of just $2.69 per month for two years.
This sale may not be around forever, but you can usually count on seeing lower monthly prices on the annual and two-year plans while the monthly plan remains at full price.
A lot of the different types of services we cover on CordCutting.com offer free trials, but this isn’t always true of VPNs. In our experience, it’s more typical to see a “money-back guarantee” offer from a VPN service than it is to see a free trial program (though there are a few exceptions: Cyberghost has a free trial program, for example).
Private Internet Access is typical in this way: There’s no standing free trial offer, but there is a 30-day money-back guarantee.
Private Internet Access doesn’t have a free trial, but it also doesn’t require you to sign any contracts. If you opt for the month-to-month plan, you can cancel at any time. Your service will be terminated at the end of whatever month you most recently paid for.
Of course, you could choose to opt for a long-term plan to save money. This still doesn’t require a contract, but it does raise the stakes: You’ll pay upfront, and you won’t get any kind of refund if you cancel after the 30-day guarantee period ends.
Canceling Private Internet Access is very easy. Just head to PIA’s website, log in, and scroll down to the auto-renewal option. Disable auto-renewal, and your PIA subscription will automatically cease at the end of your current pay period.
Keep in mind that “canceling” doesn’t undo prior payments unless you’re within the 30-day window covered by PIA’s money-back guarantee.
If you are within the 30-day period and want to make sure that you get your refund, I’d recommend contacting Private Internet Access by email.
Hopefully, you’ve learned a lot about Private Internet Access by reading this far. But you still don’t know how it fared in our trials, so be sure to check out our Private Internet Access review before you make a final decision. PIA isn’t your only VPN option, so you may also want to check out our coverage of PIA competitors like NordVPN. And when you’ve done enough research, check your findings against our list of the best VPN services. With the right VPN in your corner, you’ll be better protected every second that you’re online.