Best VPNs for France 2020 - Stay secure online with a French VPN

For those living in France who wish to evade censorship and surveillance, a VPN is an easy answer. By signing up for a service, they can protect their online activity. VPN users also gain other perks, such as access to geographically restricted content and websites.

What is the best VPN for France?

We've provided a quick rundown of our best VPNs for France below if you're in a hurry, but if you'd like more detailed information, be sure to keep scrolling.

  1. ExpressVPN - The best overall VPN service for France
  2. CyberGhost VPN - A fully-featured service with lots of VPN servers in France
  3. Private Internet Access - A robust and cheap VPN for France
  4. Surfshark - A fast and fully-featured service for a low cost
  5. PrivateVPN - A cheap VPN service that has a strong focus on privacy

Best France VPN - In-depth Analysis

Below, you'll find our top five picks for the best VPNs for France. These services provide excellent security features, high-speed VPN servers in France and around the world, and are able to unblock websites currently blocked in your location. If you'd like any more information about any of the services we've recommended, you can click through to the provider's website or check out our detailed VPN reviews.

ExpressVPN is a super-fast VPN service that doesn't skimp on security.

  • Pricing

    From  $6.67 - $12.95
  • Available on

    • Windows
    • macOS
    • iOS
    • Android
    • Linux
  • Unblocks

    • Netflix
    • iPlayer
    • Hulu

ExpressVPN lets you unblock content in 94 countries around the world. It has servers in France to let you connect to French services while on holiday, or to use local services with complete privacy in your own home. They have extremely fast servers with unlimited bandwidth, which helps make streaming in HD and other data-intensive tasks a breeze.


Up to five simultaneous connections are allowed, and ExpressVPN can access many of the most popular streaming sites worldwide like Netflix US, BBC iPlayer, Disney+, Prime Video, and many more. Additionally, ExpressVPN can help you unblock various social media sites with a few clicks too.


Sturdy AES 256-bit encryption paired with the OpenVPN protocol ensures your browsing sessions are always secure, and ExpressVPN is an audited no-logs provider that won't store records of your connection data, either. We'd certainly recommend checking out ExpressVPN, and you can make use of its generous 30-day money-back guarantee to do so!

CyberGhost has easy-to-use software, excellent security features, and consistently fast servers.

  • Pricing

    From  $2.81 - $13.47
  • Available on

    • Windows
    • macOS
    • iOS
    • Android
    • Linux
  • Unblocks

    • Netflix
    • iPlayer
    • Hulu

CyberGhost VPN is one of the best VPNs for France because it has easy-to-use software with strong privacy features. Based in Romania, it is comfortably outside the jurisdiction of the Fourteen Eyes spying alliance, which means no government snooping! Our CyberGhost VPN review found the company to be a very transparent VPN with a firm commitment to not keeping logs or user information. With a global network of servers, you'll have plenty of choices when it comes to unblocking regional content from around the world.


This VPN works with Netflix, it unblocks iPlayer, and it will let you access French content when you happen to leave the country. Thus, for unblocking it is definitely a win. Considering the cheap cost of a CyberGhost VPN subscription, we think it's excellent value-for-money VPN with robust security ideal for preventing data snooping in France. Try it for yourself with their 45-day money-back guarantee!

Private Internet Access is a low-cost high-output VPN service that's great for beginners and advanced users alike.

  • Pricing

    From  $2.84 - $10.51
  • Available on

    • Windows
    • macOS
    • iOS
    • Android
    • Linux
  • Unblocks

    • Netflix
    • iPlayer
    • Hulu

Private Internet Access (PIA) remains a popular name in the digital privacy community, despite being based in the USA. The provider has a court-proven zero-logs policy that puts fears of NSA snooping safely to bed. Couple that with its advanced security features, including 256-bit AES encryption, obfuscation (stealth) technology, and a kill switch function, and you can see that PIA is a very secure VPN that will keep your data secure when in the office or at home.


With its competitively low price point, it's a great choice for users on a budget who don't want to sacrifice security, privacy, or functionality. PIA's simple app is available on all platforms and is great for both beginners and advanced users – offering plenty of customization. Give PIA a try with their 30-day money-back guarantee.

Surfshark is a high-speed VPN service that doesn't cost the world.

  • Pricing

    From  $2.49 - $12.95
  • Available on

    • Windows
    • macOS
    • iOS
    • Android
    • Linux
  • Unblocks

    • Netflix
    • iPlayer
    • Hulu

Surfshark offers outstanding value with its VPN service and is a great choice for users looking to unblock regional content on streaming platforms such as Netflix. With its split-tunneling function, users can access services from abroad and locally at the same time without compromising their security or privacy. Couple this with Surfshark's intuitive CleanWeb technology and built-in adblocker, and you get additional protection from pop-up ads, trackers, and even malware.


Surfshark is also setting industry standards with its generous allowance of unlimited simultaneous connections, meaning that you no longer have to purchase multiple VPN subscriptions to protect all the devices in your household. This is perfect for digital privacy enthusiasts and tech-loving families. Try Surfshark risk-free with its 30-day money-back guarantee.

PrivateVPN is a low cost service that takes its users' privacy seriously.

  • Pricing

    From  $1.89 - $7.12
  • Available on

    • Windows
    • macOS
    • iOS
    • Android
    • Linux
  • Unblocks

    • Netflix
    • iPlayer
    • Hulu

PrivateVPN is an amazing service from Sweden that users praise regularly. It is a superb choice for use in France, with a global network of servers for you to choose from. It is fast, efficient, easy to use, and extremely reliable. It also provides lightning-fast speeds and dedicated servers for streaming in HD – letting you choose your server based on which platform you want to unblock. PrivateVPN is simple to use and has all the important security features you would need.


Encryption is military-grade OpenVPN with plenty of options for customization. And this VPN keeps zero logs, giving users total confidence in their own privacy. Amazingly, PrivateVPN is also super cheap and is one of our top VPNs overall for its price point. Why not try the 30-day money-back guarantee to see why PrivateVPN is proving so popular?

Why you should consider using a VPN in France

There are several factors that could affect your privacy in France, and you'll want to bear this in mind when choosing a VPN. We've taken a closer look at some of them, below.

Controversial Anti-privacy Bills and Laws

In December 2014, the French government quietly passed a surveillance law that permits the collection of information and documents processed by electronic communication networks or services, the list of numbers called and callers, and duration and timing of communications.

While the bill was hugely controversial, it was bolstered by another, more intrusive surveillance bill in 2015. Human Rights Watch pointed out the most problematic areas of the bill as:

Expansive powers for the prime minister to authorize surveillance for purposes far beyond those recognized in international human rights law; lack of meaningful judicial oversight; requirements for private service providers to monitor and analyze user data and report suspicious patterns; prolonged retention periods for some captured data; and little public transparency.

Though the goal of the bill is to place France's surveillance practices under the rule of law, it in fact uses the law to clothe a naked expansion of surveillance powers. France can do much better than this, especially if it wants to distance itself from the overreaching and secretive mass surveillance practices of the US and the UK that have attracted so many legal challenges.

Human Rights Watch general counsel, Dinah PoKempner added

2015/2016 Terrorist Attacks

2015 and 2016 were dark years for France. The beginning of 2015 saw the Charlie Hebdo shootings – when two members of the Al-Qaeda terrorist group forced their way into the office of the satirical weekly newspaper. On 7 January the terrorists killed five Charlie Hebdo staff members, left 11 wounded, and a nation rattled.

Charlie Hebdo

This tragedy was followed by the 13 November 2015 Paris attacks, coordinated by ISIL. They involved suicide bombings and mass shootings at cafes, restaurants, and the Bataclan theater. The attacks claimed 130 lives and left 368 people seriously injured. It was the deadliest attack on France since World War II. Consequently, the country remained in a prolonged state of emergency.

2016, sadly, saw its share of tragedy as well. On the evening of 14 July, a cargo truck deliberately drove through crowds of people celebrating Bastille Day in Nice. As a result of the attack, 86 people were killed and 434 were injured. ISIL claimed responsibility for this attack as well, hence the extension of the country’s state of emergency to 26 January 2017. France also increased airstrikes on ISIL in Syria and Iraq.

PS Biometrics Database

On 30 October 2016, an illegal database containing the biometric details of 60 million French citizens was created in secret. The enormous database was created by France’s Socialist Party in response to the current state of emergency, dubbing it necessary for national security. Called "Secure Electronic Titles" (TES), it contains the personal and biometric details of nearly everyone in France. This includes a photo of the face, fingerprints, eye color, weight, geographical addresses, and IP addresses.

The database violates limits on the use of biometric data, making it illegal. It also has other grave implications, such as being used for mass surveillance or being vulnerable to hackers and other cyber threats.

What makes a VPN good to use in France?

For a VPN to give you the privacy, security, and freedom you require it is important for it to have certain characteristics. Our experts picked the five best VPNs for France by using a very specific list of features and attributes. For transparency, we have detailed what we looked for below:

How to set up a VPN in France

Getting a VPN up and running in France, whether it be to unblock international content or to gain watertight digital privacy - is very easy. All of our recommendations have custom apps that you can use to connect to their servers. This makes things nice and easy. Follow the steps below to get your VPN up and running :)

  1. Choose a VPN from this guide and click through to its website to get the best price.
  2. Subscribe to the VPN and login to the website.
  3. Download the VPN app onto your device(s).
  4. Install the VPN and log in using your credentials.
  5. Connect a VPN server location that suits you.

As soon as the VPN connects, your data is being protected with encryption. As a result, your ISP, the government, WiFi hotspot providers, and local network admins - such as in school or at work - will not be able to tell what you are doing online. You will also be able to access international content by connecting to the location of your choice.

Can I use a free VPN in France?

You may be aware that there are many free VPN services on the market. Unfortunately, most of those services must be avoided at all costs. Studies have revealed that free services have weak or no encryption, critical flaws, and leaks that destroy your privacy, and apps that contain adware and spyware. This makes using those free services a huge risk to your digital health.

The good news is that you can use a VPN for free without taking any huge risks. A few trustworthy VPN providers offer a free plan that they provide as a taster. These free plans are very limited, but they do not skimp on the important part - which is the privacy and security of the VPN tunnel. 

Using a reliable free VPN in France is an option, but you will not get the same kind of experience you get with a premium subscription. Free plans are purposefully slower, they have fewer server locations to pick from, and you can only use them a little bit each month. This may drive you crazy in the end, but you are free to try them out if you want to!

A better option is to pick a VPN from this list, our recommended VPNs aren't expensive and once you have a subscription you will get a much better VPN experience. Plus, you can actually compare free services to any of the services we have recommended for free – because all of our recommended VPNs have money-back guarantees

Yes. Using a VPN is completely legal in France. You are not committing a crime by owning a subscription to a VPN, and you can use a VPN as much as you want.

Doing crimes and trying to conceal them by using a VPN is illegal, and if you engage in digital crimes you could be prosecuted. However, the use of a VPN itself is not illegal, and the things that 99.9% of people use a VPN for are completely legal.

Hiding what you do from your ISP and the government prevents your data from being accumulated and sold on to data brokers, which is a good idea if you value your privacy!

French VPN: Conclusion

The French government is using the threat of terrorist attacks to justify pre-existing mass surveillance laws, as well as the passing of new ones. Worse yet, it is creating illegal (and vulnerable) databases of its citizens’ information. While the government says it’s vital to national security, it is sad and startling to see such a pro-libertarian country falling prey to the mentality that has so many countries stripping their citizens of their basic rights in the name of safety through surveillance.

With government surveillance at an all-time high, French residents who value their online privacy would be wise to sign up with a trustworthy VPN provider. Subscribing to any of the providers mentioned above will ensure that you can go about your online activities without having to worry about who’s watching. You'll need to value your online privacy now more than ever, so here's a reminder of our top picks for French VPNs:

  1. ExpressVPN - The best overall VPN service for France
  2. CyberGhost VPN - A fully-featured service with lots of VPN servers in France
  3. Private Internet Access - A robust and cheap VPN for France
  4. Surfshark - A fast and fully-featured service for a low cost
  5. PrivateVPN - A cheap VPN service that has a strong focus on privacy

Written by: Ray Walsh

Digital privacy expert with 5 years experience testing and reviewing VPNs. He's been quoted in The Express, The Times, The Washington Post, The Register, CNET & many more. 

4 Comments

lolly Pops
on March 19, 2017
Reply
you forgot 2 excellent vpn who care about privacy users. Airvpn and Mullvad, they are less expensive. Locations are less important but it doesn't matter , for a better privacy your system time should be the same that the server you connect . So why 50 contries servers location when you will only use 5 or 6 ? Airvpn forum is great , very friendly and useful. Mullvad is too very serious , solid and safe add to this a Linux Windows and IOS software client with Killswitch and Anti Dns Leak. Could u expect more for 5€ per month! I can't chose between these 2 great VPN so I use both of them :o)
https://cdn.proprivacy.com/storage/images/proprivacy/02/member-dougjpg-avatar-image-default-1png-avatar-image-default-minpng-avatar_image-small.png
Douglas Crawford replied to lolly Pops
on March 20, 2017
Reply
Hi lolly, I persoanlly am a big fan of AirVPN (as you can see from my AirVPN review). I also like Mullvad very much. We do feel, however, that the VPNs listed here are better suited to the needs of majority of our readers.
Samfrosh Daniel
on February 24, 2017
Reply
Tanks
tram
on January 18, 2017
Reply
NordVpn cannot be accessed through Tor. Your information are certainly correct but - even for a short travel - the choice of a good isp provider should be the first step - some must be avoided. - Data base are illegal everywhere since a long time like voting a law against its own citizen or against the interest of a nation but most of countries (England also) are under control from abroad - E.U destroys more the identity & the genuine people than bringing prosperity, peace, fortune. - It exists an ancient law in u.k. : every person who looks or sounds as a suspect can be put behind the bars without any justification as an object or a dead cat in a trash. i suppose that the reason why so much countries or no-man-land (rogue state as france) do not respect the basic right is that they are not able to : the choice of a good vpn is one of the best way to be safe.
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