TunnelBear VPN Review and Test: Is It Any Good?

VPN Tunnelbear BannerTunnelBear VPN offers both free and paid service. Their VPN software uses OpenVPN protocol and 256-bit AES encryption. Additionally, TunnelBear is based in Canada, which is a member of the 5/9/14-Eyes Alliance.

In my in-detail review, I cover other details: features, speed, streaming services, quality of customer support, and its additional characteristics. Read on to find out more. 

  • Cheapest monthly price comes with a 3-year account: $3.33 per month
  • A year-long plan comes with a monthly price: $4.99
  • Compatibility: Windows, Mac, Android, and iOS with Chrome, Firefox, and Opera browser extensions
  • Maximum devices supported: Five simultaneous connections
  • Kill switch: Yes (VigilantBear)
  • Log files: TunnelBear doesn’t keep log files
  • Number of servers: 4000
  • Number of server locations: 23+ countries

Speed Test and Performance 

When traveling abroad, you’re in constant need of the internet, which makes high speeds a necessity. However, note that it’s normal that a VPN loses on speed sometimes.

Luckily, with TunnelBear, I haven’t noticed anything to be concerned about. TunnelBear’s speed and performance stays on a high level, especially with a European server.

privacy-tunnelbear

 

Of course, there is a difference between using the free option and the subscription. You can expect a higher speed and a more stable connection with a subscription plan.

I have tried the European, Australian, and USA servers to check the speed and the performance on multiple continents.

  • The European server, Amsterdam, shows a Ping of 39ms, Download: 52.26 Mbps, and Upload: 27.20 Mbps.
  • The Australian server, Melbourne, shows a Ping of 31ms, Download: 12.72 Mbps, and Upload: 0.91 Mbps.
  • The USA server, New York, shows a Ping of 277ms, Download: 4.90 Mbps, and Upload: 0.83 Mbps.

☝ There are slight drops in both the Australian and the USA servers. Taking that into consideration, I’m still satisfied with the speed and performance of the TunnelBear VPN.

How Does Tunnelbear Work?

Now that you have understood everything about what is Tunnelbear and have made up your mind about using or not using it, let us tell you about how it works.

The key principle behind the mechanism of TunnelBear is to secure the internet connection via a properly encrypted tunnel across the world. As far as its installation and set—up is concerned, it is very simple and straightforward.

TunnelBear for PCVisit the website → follow the instructions → to complete the installation. 

For iOS and Android devices: Get the app from the app or play store → Start using it. 

TunnelBear on iOS: Get the app →set up a VPN profile. 

Long story short, its intention and set-up are very much simple. There are hardly any technical barriers that will stop you from using it. If there are still many hurdles, there is a technical team to resolve the queries.

Privacy and Logging Policy 

If you mainly need a VPN to secure your privacy, we recommend not looking any further because TunnelBear is the perfect option for you. TunnelBear’s privacy policy detects DNS and IPv6 leaks, which serves as an additional protection layer on the web. Also, TunnelBear has a strict no-logging policy.

Tunnelbear privacy standards ensure that it will not collect any information regarding IP addresses, DNS Queries, and any additional information about your internet use.

However, Canada is not the best jurisdiction for VPN providers since they are required to hand over any personal information if the law requires it. The personal information includes your name, email address, last four digits of your credit card number, amount of user data, and your OS Version.

Security: Is TunnelBear Safe?

Probably the best feature TunnelBear has to offer is its security.

As I mentioned before, TunnelBear VPN does everything to protect its users’ privacy, and it uses 256-bit AES/OpenVPN, IPSec & IKEv2 encryption protocol.

This encryption is a high-tech protocol that will make sure your data is protected, and there are no leaks.

Another helpful feature that you can use is the so-called Vigilant Bear that protects your data if there is a breach in your Wi-Fi connection.

☝ If you’re in between connections, your data might not be secure, but the Vigilant Bear makes it safe.

How good is the Kill Switch of TunnelBear?

TunnelBear offers VigilantBear as the alternative of the kill switch. This feature is here to keep your mind stress-free from data leaks. It kills the internet in case the VPN connection is lost.  Effortless, it does this job on all the leading versions of Windows, Mac, and Android. 

Does TunnelBear has Split Tunnelling?

Split tunneling feature is required to route some web traffic to your ISP and some via encrypted VPN tunnel. TunnelBear has this feature. But, you will be able to enjoy it only on Android devices available as SpiltBear. It is absent on the rest of the other platforms.

Does TunnelBear Provide Considerable Protection Against DNS Leaks?

One of the notorious things that can ruin your gaming or streaming service over VPN is DNS leak. It can compromise the browsing security. So, checking this aspect of a VPN is very crucial. 

Surprisingly, TunnelBear safeguards you against the DNS leak. It ensures all the traffic and DNS pass through the VPN tunnel soon after the connection is established. The tunnels are well-encrypted. So, there is nothing to be worried about on this front. In fact, this facility is available in TunnelBear free version as well.  

TunnelBear Pricing and Plans: How much is TunnelBear?

The VPN provider offers different plans based on your needs. If you are a single user, you can choose the Unlimited plan, but if you’re buying TunnelBear for your office, choose the Teams plan.

There are no differences between these two plans regarding features, except that the Teams plan has a dedicated account manager and centralized team billing and manager.

There are three pricing plans for single users:

Free Unlimited Teams
$3.33 / mo $5.75 / mo

The Team’s plan has different prices depending on how big your team is, hence the price for a group of three members is $207 a year. However, However,  there is a TunnelBear free trial a 7-day plan for teams — try it to see why I think it’s worth it.

How to Get Unlimited TunneBear for Free 

TunnelBear is a freemium VPN that offers 500MB free per month. But, that won’t be enough if you’re watching a movie or downloading some big-size content. In case, you need some free data on your existing plan, TunnelBear has ways to help you out.

For instance, it offers +1GB once a month if you tweet about TunnelBear. You can talk about its features, share your experience with it, or just inform the users what TunnelBear is.

 You will get +1GB if you refer TunnelBear to one of your friends. The data will only be credited once your friend will sign-up with TunnelBear. You can get added +1 GB if you install TunnelBear on your computer.

These are legit ways to get free GB from TunnelBear. There are some dubious ways available on the internet but I won’t recommend it as it can be a potential breach of TunnelBear privacy and you can lose some crucial data in the process. So, I am not advocating any of this process.

Is TunnelBear Good for Torrenting? 

If you have been asking yourself does TunnelBear allow torrenting, you will be happy to know it is one of the best VPNs for torrenting — both P2P connections and the use of the TOR network. The Onion Router, or TOR, is best used in combination with VPN because it provides additional security and anonymity. Most other VPN providers do not offer this service to their users.

You shouldn’t wonder, “Does TunnelBear use data?” because, with unlimited data that you get with a premium plan, you can easily download any movies or TV shows.

Tunnebear uses trusted networks to make sure your torrenting experience is carefree. You can use any of the browser extensions we have mentioned before — Chrome, Firefox, and Opera — for safe torrenting.

Streaming: Does TunnelBear Work with Netflix?

Unfortunately, TunnelBear does not work with Netflix or the BBC iPlayer. But, to be fair, both Netflix and the BBC iPlayer have indeed tightened their security. Due to that, we did thorough research and found suitable VPNs for streaming.  As for TunnelBear, you can still stream HBO GO — if that’s more your style.

Generally, both streaming services have been working inconsistently. However, many users have had success in unblocking Netflix by using TunnelBear — maybe you will be one of the lucky ones.

Frankly speaking, the streaming capabilities of TunnelBear are not very much impressive. Even, you will be disappointed if you’re trying to stream content available on Disney+ and Amazon Prime Video.  Kodi is also not supported by it. 

Is TunnelBear Good for Gaming? 

It depends on what kind of gamer you are. TunnelBear free subscription comes with 500MB free data per month. Afterward, you have to pay for it. The ping speed is of moderate quality. You shouldn’t have high hopes for it. However, it can help you unlock some geo-restricted games. 

To be very honest, it is a bit slow when compared to some of the most famed VPNs for gaming. It is equipped with everything that is needed to protect your data when you’re in a gaming competition. It can protect you from DDoS attacks.

If you’re not a hard-core gamer then you can invest your money and efforts in it.

Customer Support 

I have tested TunnelBear’s customer support personally, and I have received a prompt answer. I am delighted with how quickly the customer support got back at me — in 24 hours. Additionally, I have received a helpful and informative response from the agent.

Unfortunately, TunnelBear doesn’t have live chat support. Hopefully, they will add it shortly since it has proven to be the most useful way to get in contact with support when you immediately need it.

Final Words: Is TunnelBear VPN any Good? 

If you’re still wondering is TunnelBear worth it — I say yes if we’re talking about security! It offers the best security and protection among VPN providers. Also, TunnelBear has an abundance of other features that you can check for yourself by registering for a free plan.

Overall, my TunnelBear rating is useful if you don’t need a  VPN for streaming services. Also, it’s a fantastic starting point if you haven’t used a VPN before because you will navigate it with ease.

FAQs

Is TunnelBear VPN Free?

TunnelBear offers an open plan to any user that signs up. The plan has limited usage of 500 MB with the same high-tech security protection.

Does TunnelBear Work in China?

TunnelBear works in China. Its GhostBear feature disguises your Internet traffic so that you can easily bypass China’s Firewall. This built-in feature is included with ALL of the TunnelBear’s subscription plans.

Does TunnelBear Have an Ad Blocker?

Yes, TunnelBear has an ad blocker that is freely available as a browser extension

Who Owns TunnelBear?

This Canada-based VPN came into being in 2011. Daniel Kaldor and Ryan Dochuk were its founders. In March 2018, McAfee acquired TunnelBear. Since then, it has been a subsidiary of McAfee.  

Is TunnelBear Legal?

TunnelBear is a freeware client that owns a Subscription business mobile license. 

This license establishes the fact that it is verified and legal. 

Does TunnelBear Keep Logs?

One of the key reasons that the TunnelBear blocker has a considerable market hold is its ability to work without keeping logs. Its no-logging operations help you have a risk-free browsing experience. All your activities can be easily done clandestinely.

 The private browsing experience can be enjoyed on 5 devices at a time.

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