What Is The Best VPN for Switzerland in 2018?
NordVPN is the best VPN for keeping your Swiss online activities safe from outsiders’ eyes. The provider protects their users’ privacy well, their customer support is top-notch, and their connection speeds are the fastest of any VPN provider I’ve tried.
For all of the reasons above, NordVPN is the best VPN to protect your online activities while inside the country of Switzerland.
Internet Freedom in Switzerland
Internet penetration in Switzerland in 2016 sat at 7.3 million users, which is 87.2% of the country’s 8.4 million population. Penetration also increased 1% from 2015.
Swiss connection speeds in Q1 2017 averaged 16.7 Mbps. 93.5% of users had access to a connection speed above 4 Mbps. The global average during Q1 2017 was 7.2 Mbps.Switzerland’s internet freedom is described as “free.” There are currently no government restrictions on citizen access to the web, and the government doesn’t appear to be monitoring email or internet chat rooms without the correct legal authorization.
Top 5 Best VPNs for Use in Switzerland
Why You Need a VPN in Switzerland
Overall internet freedom in Switzerland is high. Restrictions on content are limited to content that denies any genocide, racist or anti-Semitic language or public discourse.
Switzerland has some of the strictest data retention laws in all of Europe. (The trend for many European countries is to no data retention.) In 2015, Swiss police were granted new snooping powers, expanding them to cover all forms of communications, which includes email, text messages and IP addresses.
In this portion of the article, I’ll look at the types of content that are both allowed and blocked in Switzerland. I’ll also offer up information on what types of legal and criminal issues might be faced by users who attempt to access blocked content.
Switzerland has a high standard of freedom of speech, and blocked content generally consists only of genocide denial, racist and anti-Semitic materials, and the like. However, in 2002, a local Swiss magistrate ordered Swiss ISPs to block access to websites in the United States that were critical of Swiss courts.
Voice Over IP
Voice over IP (VoIP) usage in Switzerland is legal. Users should keep in mind that, as an internet-based service, VoIP is subject to the same security concerns as any internet service.
The major social networks are all available in Switzerland. Facebook is used by one-third of the Swiss, increasing to 82% among users 18 to 29 years old. Twitter and YouTube also have strong user numbers in the country.
Although copyright is protected in Switzerland, the country has been criticized by content copyright holders for being lenient with users who download copyrighted materials. Swiss users can knowingly download pirated audio or video content from a foreign website and not worry about prosecution.
In 2015, the Swiss government granted expanded surveillance ability to police. The new snooping powers were extended to all types of communications, including online interaction, such as email, text messages and IP addresses.
ISPs in Switzerland are required to retain user logs and billing data for a period of 12 months.
Streaming video sites, such as YouTube, Vimeo and others, are available in Switzerland.
Netflix is available in Switzerland. However, as is usual for Netflix, the content available from the Swiss flavor of Netflix is different from that which is available in other countries.
Hulu is restricted to viewing by residents of two countries, the U.S. and Japan. BBC iPlayer content is restricted to viewers in the U.K.
Legality of VPNs
It is perfectly legal to use a Virtual Private Network (VPN) in Switzerland, although users who make use of one while committing crimes can be prosecuted. (This wouldn’t apply to any of my readers, though, right?)
While online gambling is illegal in Switzerland, the law against the activity is basically toothless, with no legislation in place to actually enforce the law. Swiss inhabitants have open access to foreign gambling sites, and the Swiss government does not block such sites.
How a VPN Protects Your Internet Usage in Switzerland
Swiss residents and visitors who are looking for the best way to protect their online travels incognito are highly recommended to consider subscribing to a Virtual Private Network (VPN) service.
A VPN protects an internet user’s online travels from the prying eyes of outsiders by encasing it in a solid layer of encryption, preventing the Swiss government, ISPs and even hackers from monitoring the user’s activity and stealing the user’s personal and business information.
Another important feature of a VPN is its ability to ram through content roadblocks due to its ability to make it appear as if a user’s internet connection is originating from another location.
How to Choose the Best VPN for Switzerland
When you’re doing your due diligence before making a VPN subscription-buying decision, make sure to keep a few important considerations in mind. Look for a provider that offers all-around privacy protection, fast connections, excellent customer support and comprehensive global server coverage.
In this section, I’ll examine each service category, explain why it’s important and then reveal how well each VPN provider I’ve reviewed fares in the category.
Privacy is possibly the most important consideration in any VPN-buying decision. When you’re going to use it in a country with rather draconian data retention laws, like Switzerland, it becomes of more importance.
Check to see where a provider’s base of operations is located, that country’s stance on privacy, whether the provider keeps user logs, and if it offers privacy-copacetic payment options, such as Bitcoin.
Providers below are ranked according to how well they protect the privacy of their users, best protections to worst.
When it comes to connection speeds, faster is better. The speed of your internet connection directly affects your overall satisfaction with your online experience.
When I test the connection speeds of my top 10 VPNs, I do the following:
The list below is ranked by average speed percentage, best to worst.
Avg. DL Speed
Avg. DL Speed
Other Factors to Consider
The quality of a VPN provider’s customer support isn’t important, right? Well, not until you need it.
Look for a VPN that offers a trouble ticket tracking system, live support chat and a searchable knowledge base.
The VPNs listed below are ranked according to the level of support offered, best to worst.
Sure, you want to save money, there’s nothing wrong with that. But don’t make a VPN-buying decision based strictly on a low price. Cheaper isn’t always better, and a higher price doesn’t necessarily guarantee a higher level of service.
When researching a provider’s pricing, also take a look at the level of services they offer. This will expose any service corners they may be cutting to allow for offering that bargain-basement price.
Keep an eye out for sales, as most providers offer periodic promotional deals that can greatly reduce the price you’ll pay for your VPN service. You may have to agree to a longer subscription period, though. Conversely, you can also opt to pay monthly for your VPN, but this will most likely cost you more over time.
These price rankings are sorted from lowest price to highest.
*The prices in the table reflect the monthly cost when paying for an annual subscription. (Annual Subscription Price / 12 Months.)
Global Server Coverage
Selecting a VPN provider that offers all-around global server coverage ensures you’ll get maximum content-unblocking power for that content you can’t access from inside of Switzerland. The map below illustrates comprehensive global server coverage.
If you’re like me, you have more than one connected device. Mobile devices, computers, streaming and gaming devices, your refrigerator - the mind boggles. This makes multi-platform support an important consideration.
The list below ranks each provider’s device support, most devices to least.