Why Using a VPN is Essential When Traveling Abroad?

HomeTechnologyWhy Using a VPN is Essential When Traveling Abroad?

When traveling to foreign countries, using a Virtual Private Network (VPN) is not just a good idea – it’s crucial for protecting your privacy, security and access to information. A VPN encrypts your internet connection and routes it through a remote server, hiding your real IP address and location. This provides several key benefits that every international traveler should take advantage of.

Secure Your Data on Public Wi-Fi

One of the biggest reasons to use a VPN while travelling is to secure your data when connecting to public Wi-Fi hotspots. Airports, hotels, cafes and other public places often provide free Wi-Fi, but these networks are notoriously insecure. Hackers can easily intercept your data on these networks, stealing sensitive information like passwords and credit card numbers.

A good VPN encrypts all the data sent between your device and the VPN server. Even if a hacker manages to intercept your data, it will be unreadable and useless to them. This encryption is essential for protecting your private data like emails, messages, photos, and banking information when using public Wi-Fi abroad.

Bypass Censorship and Geo-Restrictions

Many countries censor and restrict access to certain websites and online services. China is notorious for its “Great Firewall” that blocks access to sites like Google, Facebook, YouTube and Western news media. Other countries like Russia, Iran, and Egypt also heavily censor the internet. Even some popular sites and apps like Netflix and WhatsApp restrict access based on your location.

By connecting to a VPN server in a different country, you can bypass these restrictions and freely access the open internet. A VPN allows you to “geo-shift” your location and appear to be browsing from the country where the VPN server is located. This lets you access your usual sites, apps and streaming content no matter where you travel.

Avoid Government Surveillance

In addition to hackers, many governments monitor their citizens’ internet activity. This surveillance is especially aggressive in countries like China, Russia, Iran and others. As a foreign traveler, your internet activity could be targeted for extra scrutiny and tracking by local authorities.

You can get a VPN app to prevent your internet traffic from being tied to your real identity and location. Your online activity cannot be traced back to you personally. While a VPN doesn’t make you completely anonymous online, it’s an essential layer of privacy when traveling in countries with oppressive surveillance.

Find Better Deals

Interestingly, using a VPN can sometimes help you find better deals on flights, hotels and other travel services. Many travel booking sites show different prices to users in different countries. By connecting through a VPN, you may be able to access cheaper rates than what’s shown in your home country.

Keep in mind this doesn’t always work and is a bit of a gray area. But it’s a useful trick to be aware of and potentially save some money when researching travel deals online.

How to Choose a VPN for Travel

With so many VPN services available, it’s important to choose a reputable provider for traveling abroad. Look for a VPN that offers:

  • Strong encryption (AES-256)
  • No logging of user activity
  • A large network of servers in many countries
  • Fast connection speeds
  • Easy to use apps for all your devices

Some of the top recommended VPNs for travel include NordVPN, ExpressVPN, Surfshark, and ProtonVPN. Avoid using free VPNs as they often lack important security features, impose data limits, and may even sell your data to third parties.


Using a VPN is an essential tool for the modern international traveler. It protects your sensitive data on untrusted networks, bypasses online censorship, shields you from surveillance, and can even help you find better deals. While a VPN isn’t a complete privacy solution, it’s one of the best and easiest ways to safeguard your online activity abroad. Don’t leave home without it.

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