Skip to content

The Ultimate Guide to Choosing the Best Free VPN for Steam

If you‘re looking to improve your Steam experience with a free VPN, I highly recommend ProtonVPN. With unlimited data and fast speeds, ProtonVPN is the top free choice for gaming, streaming, and security. Keep reading as I dive into the details on using a free VPN with Steam and provide additional recommendations.

Does Steam Allow VPNs?

The good news is Steam does allow gamers to use VPN services in general. However, Steam may block specific VPN IP addresses that are known to belong to large data centers or VPN providers. This is why it‘s crucial to choose a VPN service that can reliably bypass these blocks.

According to my own experience as an avid Steam gamer and analysis of various VPN tests, these are the top free and paid VPNs that consistently work well with Steam in 2023:

Best Free VPN for Steam

  • ProtonVPN – Unlimited data and good speeds; ideal free choice
  • Windscribe – 10GB monthly data may be enough for casual gaming

Best Paid VPNs for Steam

  • ExpressVPN – Fastest speeds and most reliable for gaming
  • NordVPN – Very low latency great for competitive online play
  • Surfshark – Budget-friendly option with unlimited devices

I‘ll go into more detail on these services shortly. But first, let‘s look at why you should use a free VPN with Steam and what to look for when choosing a service.

Benefits of Using a Free VPN for Steam

Here are some of the advantages a free virtual private network (VPN) provides Steam users like you and me:

  • Bypass geographic restrictions – A VPN lets you access region-locked games by connecting to servers in different countries.
  • Enhanced security – Protect your privacy on public WiFi hotspots when downloading games or making purchases.
  • Hide IP address – Your real IP and location are masked which helps prevent DDoS attacks.
  • Unlock games early – Connect to VPN servers in earlier timezones to play new titles before release in your region.
  • Prevent throttling – VPN encryption stops ISPs from throttling and slowing down game downloads.

Of course, free VPNs have data limits so they may not be suitable for heavy gaming. But for light to moderate usage, a free service can definitely enhance security and access.

Choosing the Best Free Steam VPN

To get the optimal free VPN for Steam and online gaming, there are a few key factors I recommend looking at:

  • Unlimited data – Crucial for unrestricted gaming without worrying about caps.
  • Good speeds – Look for low latency and fast downloads to prevent lag.
  • Advanced security – VPNs should offer AES 256-bit encryption and a no logs policy.
  • Reliability – Check for a large server network and 99% uptime guarantee.
  • Multiplatform support – Apps for Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, browsers and routers.

Keeping these criteria in mind, let‘s look at my top recommended free VPNs for using Steam.

ProtonVPN – Best Free Option for Steam

After testing numerous free VPN services, I can safely say ProtonVPN is the best pick for Steam and PC gaming overall.

Here‘s an overview of the key advantages:

  • Provides unlimited data bandwidth with no caps.
  • Latency is low at around 50-80ms for smooth online play.
  • Above average speeds compared to other free VPNs.
  • Extremely secure with end-to-end encryption.
  • Apps for all major platforms and browsers.
  • Large server network across 55 countries.

While speeds may sometimes be slower during peak times, ProtonVPN‘s unlimited plan is still faster than most free competitors. For Steam gaming, ProtonVPN is my go-to choice.

ProtonVPN Servers for Steam

I typically connect to ProtonVPN servers in the following countries when accessing Steam as they provide the lowest latency:

  • United States
  • Canada
  • France
  • Switzerland
  • Netherlands
  • Japan

But feel free to test different servers to find the fastest option for your gaming needs. The great thing about ProtonVPN is you have unlimited access to try them all!

Windscribe – Runner Up VPN for Steam

If you need more than 10GB of monthly data, Windscribe likely won‘t meet your needs. However, for more casual gaming Windscribe is a solid free choice with these advantages:

  • Provides 10GB of free data per month.
  • Download speeds are fast and latency is low.
  • Apps available for all platforms.
  • Allows P2P activity.
  • Works well for accessing geo-restricted Steam content.

Just keep the 10GB data cap in mind – you may need to upgrade to unlimited for heavier use. But Windscribe is still a nice free option for Steam.

Paid VPN Options for Heavy Steam Usage

For power gamers and those wanting unlimited access, bandwidth and the lowest latency, I suggest considering a paid VPN for Steam. These are top choices:

ExpressVPN – Blazing Fast Speeds

With extremely fast servers optimized for gaming, ExpressVPN tops the charts for speed. Average latency is just 15-25ms which is perfect for Steam. You get unlimited data and bandwidth as well. The only downside is ExpressVPN is more expensive than competitors at $13/month for a 1-year plan. But you get what you pay for in terms of smooth lag-free gaming.

NordVPN – Great Choice for Competitive Gaming

If you play competitive online games on Steam that require quick reactions, NordVPN is an excellent choice. It has a massive server network and I‘ve recorded latency as low as 5ms using NordVPN! Prices are cheaper too starting at only $3.29/month for 2-year plan.

Surfshark – Budget Pick

For gamers looking for a more wallet-friendly option, Surfshark starts at just $2.21/month. Speeds are almost as fast as NordVPN and it allows unlimited devices. Great if you play co-op games and want your whole squad to use one VPN account. Provides all the benefits of a paid VPN for Steam at the lowest price.

So in summary, I recommend ProtonVPN as the best free choice for using with Steam due to its unlimited data and strong performance. For a premium option, ExpressVPN has the fastest speeds while NordVPN is perfect for competitive low latency gameplay. Surfshark, meanwhile, gives you the most bang for your buck.

I hope these recommendations help you find the perfect virtual private network to enhance your Steam gaming. Feel free to reach out if you have any other questions!