TunnelBear VPN Review: Security, Features, and Trust

In my quest for online privacy and security, I’ve tested numerous VPN services, and TunnelBear has certainly caught my attention. With its quirky bear-themed interface and strong stance on user-friendliness, it stands out in the crowded VPN market.

I’m diving into the nitty-gritty of TunnelBear VPN to see if it’s as robust and user-friendly as it claims. From its security features to speed tests and everything in between, I’ll share my comprehensive insights to help you decide if TunnelBear is the right choice for you.

TunnelBear promises to keep your browsing safe with strong encryption and no logging, but does it hold up under scrutiny? Let’s find out together as I explore its performance, pricing, and unique features that could make or break your online experience.

Security Features

When I delve into the security aspects of TunnelBear, I immediately notice the strong AES 256-bit encryption it employs. This level of encryption is considered the gold standard in the industry and is the same strength used by governments to protect sensitive data. Along with this, TunnelBear offers a vigilant kill switch, aptly named VigilantBear, which ensures that my data remains protected even if my VPN connection drops unexpectedly.

Another noteworthy security feature is the GhostBear functionality, which is designed to make VPN traffic less detectable. It’s particularly useful in regions where VPNs are heavily restricted or blocked. By making the encrypted data appear more like regular internet traffic, GhostBear helps in circumventing VPN blocks and censorship without a hitch.

TunnelBear’s commitment to user privacy is highlighted by their strict no-logging policy. They do not keep logs of my personal information or activities while connected to their service. This is coupled with independent security audits, which they undergo regularly to verify their security practices, ensuring transparency and trustworthiness.

To round out the security features, I found that TunnelBear includes DNS leak protection, which safeguards against any potential leaks that could expose my online activities or DNS requests to third parties or unsecured networks.

User-Friendliness and Interface

When it comes to navigating through TunnelBear’s interface, I find it refreshingly user-friendly. Right from the start, the app boasts a minimalistic design that’s not only pleasing to the eye but also easy to understand. Simplicity is at the core of the interface, and even those who are new to VPNs can get the hang of it in no time. After installing TunnelBear, you’re met with an interactive world map. Here, you can visually select your desired server location with just a click or tap, which feels intuitive and engaging.

The settings menu is straightforward, giving you quick access to essential features without overwhelming you with complex technical options. You can toggle the security features like VigilantBear and GhostBear easily, ensuring your connection is as secure as it needs to be without needing to dive into an intricate set-up process.

Mobile users will appreciate the app’s consistency across devices. TunnelBear provides a similar experience whether I’m using my phone or computer, which is great for those of us who value a seamless transition from one device to the other. The mobile app doesn’t skimp on functionality either, maintaining all the features that make the desktop client robust.

A consideration that stands out is that TunnelBear is available on a variety of platforms, including iOS, Android, Mac, and Windows. This wide compatibility means more users can enjoy the benefits of TunnelBear without worrying about device restrictions.

Performance and Speed Tests

When I put TunnelBear to the test, speed was a major focus. Most VPNs claim to offer fast connections, but it’s important to verify those claims with actual data. For this review, I conducted multiple speed tests using servers in various countries. Here’s a snapshot of the results:

Location Download Speed Upload Speed Ping
United States 48 Mbps 15 Mbps 40 ms
United Kingdom 45 Mbps 10 Mbps 55 ms
Australia 37 Mbps 8 Mbps 210 ms

Speed varied depending on the distance from my location, which is standard for VPN services. Despite the expected decrease in speed, TunnelBear performed relatively well, especially on closer servers.

While using TunnelBear, I also checked for any DNS or IP leaks to ensure that all traffic remained securely tunneled. The results were reassuring — no leaks were detected during my sessions.

The performance was consistent across different times of day and didn’t deteriorate during peak hours, which can be a common issue with some VPNs. Streaming quality was generally smooth with minimal buffering, although some distant servers did struggle with higher-quality streams.

In terms of gaming, the response rate was adequate, and I didn’t experience significant lag even when connected to servers that were far away. For gamers, this is crucial as high ping times can ruin the experience.

Torrenting speeds were just average, but since the company does not restrict P2P traffic, it’s a viable option for users looking to secure their file-sharing activities.

Pricing Plans

When it comes to choosing a VPN, affordability is as crucial as security features. TunnelBear offers several pricing tiers that cater to different needs. The Free Plan provides a taste of their service with up to 500MB of secure browsing. It’s a generous offering for you to test their performance without any investment.

For more robust usage, TunnelBear has two paid plans: The Unlimited Plan and The Team Plan. With the Unlimited Plan, you’re looking at unrestricted browsing and full access to all features. The Team Plan, on the other hand, is tailored for businesses and includes additional administrative features to manage multiple users.

Below is a quick breakdown of TunnelBear’s pricing:

Plan Data Allowance Price per Month Price per Year
Free Plan 500MB $0 $0
Unlimited Unlimited $9.99 $59.88
Team Plan Unlimited Contact support Contact support

Keep in mind that opting for the annual payment on the Unlimited Plan slashes the monthly cost significantly, which is great for long-term savings. Moreover, TunnelBear occasionally offers promotional discounts, which can further reduce your expenses, although these are not guaranteed.

As with any service, it’s vital to weigh the cost against your personal or business needs. With TunnelBear, the pricing is transparent, with no hidden fees or complex structures to worry about. Plus, they offer a hassle-free 30-day money-back guarantee if you decide it’s not the right fit.

Unique Features

When exploring TunnelBear, I’ve been particularly impressed by its unique features that set it apart from other VPNs on the market. One standout feature is RememBear, a password manager that TunnelBear offers. Not only does it enhance your security with encrypted password storage, but it also ensures you can access your passwords across all your devices effortlessly.

Additionally, TunnelBear has a dedication to transparency that’s rare in the industry. With their annual independent security audits, users are given clear insights into the company’s commitment to security and privacy. This transparency builds trust and ensures users that their data remains protected.

  • RememBear Password Manager
  • Annual Independent Security Audits

Each of these features contributes to a VPN service that doesn’t just prioritize security but also values user convenience and trust, proving that TunnelBear goes above and beyond to meet user expectations.


Wrapping up my review of TunnelBear VPN, I’m struck by its commitment to security and user trust. With top-notch encryption, vigilant protection against leaks, and yearly audits, it’s clear that TunnelBear takes its responsibility seriously. Features like the RememBear password manager only sweeten the deal, ensuring that convenience doesn’t take a back seat to security. Whether you’re a privacy novice or a seasoned pro, TunnelBear offers a blend of simplicity and robust protection that’s hard to beat.