A VPN or Virtual Private Network helps you push your network traffic through a remote server to receive and send out data, while also concealing your actual location which gives out the impression that you’re in a location you are actually not at. VPNs are mainly used to add an extra layer of privacy and security to users’ online activities. Apart from usual bypass regional restrictions imposed on various video streaming services, you can use a VPN for other less known benefits.
5 Unconventional Uses of VPN
Discover Cheaper Car Rental Services and Flights
With the unstoppable march of the Internet, more and more advertisers are getting through to us non-stop. We are definitely geo-targeted by advertisers for prices as also for our locations. Yes your location can dictate product and services prices.
A leading VPN provider, VyprVPN has recently launched a new infographic that shows that geo-targeting is moving to a new height. This infographic explains that different countries or regions have varying prices for the same car rental and flights.
How to Use VPN for Cheaper Flight Prices (Credit: VyprVPN)
For instance, a flight from Sydney to Los Angeles on a site costs US$2,929.54 for buyers based in New Zealand. The same flight would cost a buyer in Lithuania US$5,424.80 – nearly double! With car rental sites also, there were profound differences from country to country for the same routes traveled. Thus using a powerful VPN provider to change your location could result in some great savings definitely. All you need to do is sign up with a well-known VPN provider which has many locations.
Follow these steps in order to purchase cheaper flights and car rentals with the help of VON:
- First eliminate your cookies and history or open an Incognito or InPrivate browser.
- Then use the VPN software to connect to another country’s location.
- Finally get into Google to locate the site you want.
Your VPN connection will get you the site’s localized version, should one be available that allows comparing prices against those of your home country.
You Can Bypass Traffic Shaping
Over the years, it has been seen that Internet service providers have started limiting certain types of activity, particularly in areas noted for heavy or wide usage. This usually results in reduced Internet speed. Traffic shaping, also called traffic management and packet shaping, basically means restricting your Internet.
So if your Internet connection turns out to be slow when you access specific services then in all probability, it’s being restricted by a traffic management policy. Services like YouTube and Netflix, are more affected by traffic shaping leading to buffering and terribly poor playback.
The VPN can help you bypass traffic shaping in all its forms and ensure full Internet speed and your ISP will be unable to identify the type of data or services you’re transferring. This invisibility of usage would enable you to download hundreds of gigabytes or watch innumerable movies on YouTube. It becomes impossible for the ISP to interfere in your activities because it gets to see only an encrypted connection from your computer to the VPN server.
Protection During Vacations and Holidays
An additional advantage of a VPN is that you can use it while away on vacations and holidays also. So while choosing a VPN provider, first look at the location you’re traveling to and then select one having servers in your destination country. This may not always be possible because the VPN provider may not have servers in all countries. Thus you need to select one that has a server close to your destination country and would secure your connection and also help in web browsing every day.
A server close to your location will provide increased speed and make the surfing experience faster and more pleasurable than Wi-Fi capabilities provided by a café or hotel in a foreign country. The closest server will also ensure security and privacy which is something that Hillary Clinton obviously did not care about. But most people do!
Play Games to your Heart’s Content
ISPs generally tend to slow down traffic from online games, particularly those using the bandwidth-intensive BitTorrent protocol for issuing updates and patches. Moreover, since these are used for downloading copyrighted material illegally, network providers tend to throttle them. When you resort to a VPN service provider, you actually make it impossible for your ISP to slow down your gaming experience directly.
Avoid Getting Spied On
VPN usage gives you the freedom to work from cafés and public places with common Wi-Fi aspects without anybody encroaching upon your privacy.
While most public networks can be insecure because they receive and send traffic sans any encryption as is generally seen on WPA2 networks used mostly by home users, your VPN service provider will ensure that your traffic is encrypted with top-quality military-grade encryption. This is also safe for shopping online when you are abroad, provided the transaction goes through a server placed in the country from where the purchase was made.
If you use a foreign credit card while shopping abroad, you will get a notification from the host saying that the purchase is suspect and you will need to give proof that the card is indeed yours. This wouldn’t happen if you had used a VPN based in the country where you made the purchase.
5 Unconventional Uses of VPN – Wrap Up
So as you can see from the list above, the benefits of using VPN while browsing the web are not exclusively limited to avoiding geoblocks. Have you used VPN for unconventional reasons other than the ones we’ve discussed above? Let us know by dropping a comment below.