Updated: May, 2, 2023
With over 200 million users, Hola VPN is one of the most popular free services that has been offering a peer-to-peer network since 2012.
But does it really provide the same level of security, privacy, and protection as other VPNs? Is unblocking websites one of the features? Keep reading our Hola VPN review to learn about everything that this provider has to offer.
Hola leans more on the proxy side than on the VPN one. Unlike other providers, such as ExpressVPN or CyberGhost, which use servers for their traffic, this one relies mainly on a peer-to-peer network that directs your traffic through a proxy tunnel. However, Hola says it also has a traditional VPN server base, so it’s a hybrid service.
Although Hola isn’t a traditional VPN, we have to test the speed to see if it will hinder your internet use. We connected to several local and overseas connections on a 200Mbps symmetrical connection. Here are the outcomes:
Overall, Hola provides better speeds than services such as PureVPN, but it’s not as fast as industry heavyweights such as NordVPN.
If using the internet anonymously and securely is important for you, we suggest going for a different provider, such as HotSpot Shield.
Many Hola VPN reviews online provide misleading information about the provider’s server base. Since it mainly uses a peer-to-peer network, most of its “locations” are not fixed in one place.
But Hola also relies on a traditional VPN server network of around 1,500 servers around the world. You get access to all of them with the Ultra plan only; with the Hola VPN Free and Premium packages, you get 500 and 1,000, respectively.
Hola’s server park is average in size and not as big as that of industry leaders such as ExpressVPN.
Hola VPN unblocks geo-restricted websites. Let’s see which streaming services it gives access to and if it allows torrenting:
Which browsers does Hola support?
On what desktop and mobile apps can you install Hola?
Which other devices is Hola compatible with?
Hola’s Free version, which allows only one device per account, is the most popular package among users. But to get more features like a kill switch, unlimited streaming, secure encryption, and access to over a thousand servers, you have to update to the Premium or Ultra plan, which have the following pricing:
|Monthly Premium plan||£11.99/month|
|Annual Premium plan||£6.09/month; £73.08/year|
|Three-year Premium plan||£2.39/month; £86.04/every three years|
|Monthly Ultra plan||£22.99/month|
|Annual Ultra plan||£14.99/month; £179.88/year|
|Three-year Ultra plan||£6.09/month; £219.24/every three years|
Overall, Hola’s Premium pricing is in line with another provider, such as TunnelBear.
All of the paid subscriptions include a 30-day money-back guarantee. As for payment methods, Hola accepts credit cards, PayPal, AliPay, GiroPay, SOFORT, and iDEAL. Unfortunately, it does not accept cryptocurrencies.
Hola’s customer support was sub-par in our experience. There’s no live chat and no ticket submission platform, and only Premium subscribers can contact customer reps through email. But even the email service was underwhelming—we contacted them about several issues and received no response.
Hola has a FAQ page on its website, but it only includes the most basic issues. Overall, if you have a more serious problem with this VPN, don’t expect to get a solution there.
For top-notch customer support, we suggest opting for another VPN, such as IPVanish.
Below we compare Hola VPN to a couple of other popular providers.
Surshark offers faster speeds on both local and overseas servers with an average speed loss of just 30%, compared to Hola’s 47%. The difference is especially stark when connected to an Australian server, where Hola’s download speed dips by 83%.
As for security and privacy, Surfsharks takes the cake here too. Although Hola’s Premium subscription includes AES-256 encryption like Surfshark, there were data leaks in our tests.
The only advantage of Hola over Surfshark we could find was the fact that Hola has a free version.
These two providers offer similar features and services, but Hola has higher speeds than ProtonVPN. However, ProtonVPN includes the OpenVPN protocol, TOR compatibility, and diskless RAM servers.
Although Hola offers a free plan, ProtonVPN’s free subscription is better because it includes a strict no-logs policy.
Hola VPN is an excellent option if you want to watch geo-restricted entertainment content online. It has a large user base, good speeds, and a free subscription. However, you should avoid Hola if privacy and security are among your priorities.
We hope our concise but comprehensive Hola VPN review helped you decide if this provider is right for you.
Since it lacks some security and privacy features, we would say that Hola isn’t as safe as a regular VPN. Still, it’s useful for bypassing geo-restrictions if securing your connection is not among your priorities.
With Hola, your IP address is out in the open since it uses IP addresses for its’ peer-to-peer network and didn’t pass our leak test.
Hola is a hybrid between a traditional VPN and a web proxy.
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