13 Ways a Free VPN Can Save You Money on Online Shopping

If you encounter a sudden $200 hike in the price of an online item you’ve been tracking, you may be experiencing price discrimination. This occurs when different prices are set for the same product based on the consumer’s personal data or browsing behavior.

But in the era of digital commerce, savvy shoppers are always looking for strategies to save money while shopping online. One such tool that can be surprisingly effective against price discrimination is a free Virtual Private Network (VPN). 

Here’s how a free VPN can help you save money during your online shopping sprees.

How Online Prices Are Determined

In theory, the primary driver of pricing is the principle of supply and demand. Prices tend to go up with increased demand, and conversely, goods in lower demand typically see a price drop, thereby establishing a market equilibrium.

However, in real-world scenarios, businesses often use pricing strategies like surge pricing to manipulate this balance. For instance, companies may charge higher prices in wealthier countries for the same quality of service. 

Travel agencies, too, are known to employ user profile targeting tactics to modify costs. If you miss a flight, they might hike the price for a subsequent ticket to the same destination, capitalizing on your urgent need to travel. 

Similarly, they may withhold specific deals and discounts if they anticipate you will make the purchase regardless, such as for an annual Burning Man festival event.

Another aspect involves agreements between producers and distributors. For video games on platforms like Steam, prices can vary significantly from one country to another. This is due to publishers setting region-specific prices, to which platforms like Steam must conform.

Ultimately, these practices can lead to consumers paying more. However, this doesn’t always have to be the case, especially when you leverage free VPNs to your advantage.

13 Ways To Save Online With A Free VPN

1. Accessing Regional Discounts

Different regions often have different pricing for the same products. A free VPN can allow you to use these regional discounts by changing your virtual location, potentially leading to significant savings.

2. Avoiding Dynamic Pricing

Many online retailers use dynamic pricing, which changes based on your location, browsing history, and device. A free VPN can mask your IP address and browsing habits, helping you avoid higher prices using this strategy.

3. Finding Cheaper Flight and Hotel Deals

Travel websites are notorious for offering different prices based on your location. With a free VPN, you can explore various regions’ pricing for flights and hotels, leading to considerable savings on your travel bookings.

4. Accessing Exclusive Sales

Some online stores offer exclusive sales or additional discounts to customers in certain countries. You can use these exclusive deals by switching your free VPN location.

5. Bypassing Geo-Blocked Deals

Specific deals or coupons are only accessible to users in particular locations. A free VPN can help you bypass these geo-blocks, allowing you to access a broader range of discounts and special offers.

6. Avoiding Price Discrimination

Online retailers sometimes charge more for products in wealthier areas. You can avoid such price discrimination by using a free VPN to appear as if you’re browsing from a different location.

7. Comparing Prices Across Different Regions

A free VPN lets you compare prices across different regions without the need to be there physically. This can help you find the best deal for any product, as you can choose any virtual location while your actual location remains untraceable.

8. Reduced Shipping Costs

Sometimes, online stores offer cheaper shipping options to certain regions. Using a free VPN may find a more cost-effective shipping method to use an alternative regional location that wouldn’t usually be available instead of your real location.

9. Currency Conversion Benefits

Shopping in a different currency can sometimes be cheaper due to conversion rates. A free VPN allows you to access websites in other regions, potentially leading to savings through favorable currency conversions.

10. Accessing Subscription Services at Lower Rates

Subscription services like streaming platforms often have different rates in different countries. A free VPN can help you subscribe at a lower rate available in another region.

11. Avoiding Tracking and Targeted Advertising

Online outlets often track your browsing habits and may raise prices based on your interest in certain products. A free VPN helps prevent this tracking, potentially leading to lower prices.

12. Finding Deals in Other Languages

Some deals might only be advertised on region-specific versions of websites, often in different languages. You can access these sites with a free VPN and take advantage of such localized deals.

13. Early Access to Sales

In some cases, online sales start earlier in certain time zones. Using a free VPN to change your virtual time zone allows you to access these sales before they become available in your region.

Alternative Ways To Save Money Online

In addition to employing a VPN, there are supplementary strategies you can implement, though they are not entirely fail-safe. Using these methods alongside a free VPN is advisable for enhanced efficacy.

Opt for Private Browsing or Incognito Mode

Engaging in incognito or private browsing mode can obstruct third parties from gleaning your past browsing activities and tracking your data. This approach reduces the likelihood of encountering dynamic pricing based on online behavior.

Regularly Clear Your Browser’s Cookies and Cache

Browsing without protection leaves behind digital traces, like cookies, that websites use to tailor the prices displayed to you. Therefore, regularly clearing your browser’s cookies and cache is essential in prepping for deal hunting. This helps ensure that past browsing data doesn’t influence the prices you encounter.

Key Takeaways

A free VPN can be a surprisingly effective tool for saving money while shopping online. By allowing you to change your virtual location, a free VPN opens up a world of possibilities for finding the best deals, from regional discounts to avoiding dynamic pricing. 

However, choosing a reputable free VPN provider ensures your online activities remain secure and private. With these 13 strategies in mind, you can make your online shopping experience enjoyable and cost-effective.


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