If you have outgrown your shared hosting plan, the next most obvious step is upgrading to a VPS. And while many people believe there’s no such thing as quality cheap VPS hosting, cheap VPS providers are alive and well. Still, finding an optimal option in the cheap VPS world might be challenging because these solutions usually come with trade-offs, such as the ease of use sacrifice.
HostAdvice experts performed an independent study on the Best VPS providers for all types of users, including real-life performance testing and thousands of user reviews and surveys. Some of these web hosts come with control panels so that you can manage your VPS easily. More importantly, you can start at as little as a few dollars per month.
Without further ado, here are the top seven cheap VPS providers we recommend confidently.
Short on Time? Check Our Top Cheap VPS Providers
What Is Cheap VPS and Who Is It For?
VPS hosting is the middle ground between a shared server and dedicated hosting. You’ll still share a server with other users if you choose a VPS. Virtualization, on the other hand, allocates resources to each account independently. So, you’ll get far more control over your resources than with shared hosting.
As the name implies, a cheap VPS is a Virtual Private Server on a budget. There are dependable and good options on the market. However, it frequently comes at the expense of the convenience of use — most low-cost services are unmanaged and lack an interface to operate with.
If you consider cheap VPS hosting, your customer experience will primarily depend on whether you choose unmanaged, semi-managed, or managed VPS hosting. In turn, this depends on how much control you desire and are comfortable with.
In general, cheap VPS hosting is excellent for anyone looking for the benefits of dedicated servers, such as better control, customization, and freedom, at a lower price. However, while managed VPS may apply to beginners, unmanaged cheap VPS requires technological skills and understanding.
- Click here to explore more about the best VPS providers on the market today
The Best Cheap VPS Services Of 2023 (Bought and Tested):
Kamatera is the pioneer in scalable VPS hosting solutions. Personally, I’ve hosted with Kamatera, and I have nothing but good words – you can start as cheap as $4 per month or $0.005 per hour. Yes, you got it right; you can pay by the hour or even by the minute!
- Overall Score: 4.9
- User Friendly: 4.8
- Performance: 4.9
- Customization: 5.0
- Features: 4.9
- Pricing: 4.9
Kamatera is the cheapest cloud VPS, delivering the most technologically advanced products on the market for your business with knowledgeable customer support available to assist you 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
User Friendly: The server set-up will take less than a minute, and you won’t be responsible for hardware maintenance. Technical support is available 24/7, and they are super friendly and helpful.
Performance: Kamatera operates 13 global data centers in North America, Europe, Asia, and the Middle East, delivering a 99.95% uptime guarantee.
Customization: As a customer, you get the absolute freedom to configure, scale up or down and add new components as required. You can launch the VPS with a wide range of specifications - from 1 to 104 vCPU, 256MB to 512GB of RAM, 5GB Storage to tens of terabytes of block storage, and any operating system you wish.
Features: You get to build your server, root/administrator access to your servers, a proprietary API, unlimited storage, and valuable add-ons, including OS add-ons (cPanel and Plesk), up to four public IPs, offsite backups, and managed support.
Pricing: With Kamatera, you can pay hourly by the minute or monthly and only for what you use. If you are not 100% satisfied, you can cancel at any time. A 30-day free trial is also included.
Pros & Cons
- The absolute freedom to customize your cheap VPS (CPU, RAM, OS, or even add servers)
- Pay-as-you-go solution with instant scaling (no upfront costs and commitments)
- Supports all operating systems (Windows, Ubuntu, CentOS, Debian, FreeBSD, Gentoo, OpenSUSE, Internal Network Communication
- Most add-ons cost extra (cPanel, Plesk, extended daily backups, full server management)
- You need at least some technical skills to operate
I don’t believe IONOS’ rating fairly represents its quality. While the host might not have the best reputation, its fully virtualized VPS with full root access and API is worth every dime.
- Overall Score: 3.7
- Features: 3.6
- Reliability: 3.8
- User-Friendly: 3.7
- Support: 3.7
- Pricing: 3.6
IONOS offers the best VPS servers with various options; you can choose from Linux or Windows, a standard or memory-optimized VPS, an optional Plesk web host, and several data centers around the globe.
Features: 1-click WordPress install and WP Toolkit, SSL encryption, firewall management, DDoS protection, preconfigured email functionality, unlimited bandwidth, and optional backups.
Reliability: IONOS utilizes last-generation hardware, including Intel Xeon E5 processors and 100% SAN SSD storage for maximum availability and 99.99% uptime.
User-Friendly: You’ll benefit from an intuitive IONOS cloud panel, streamlining your VPS management.
Support: IONOS’ server experts are available 24/7 to solve your issue quickly, minimizing downtime.
Pricing: You can choose from monthly or annual billing terms, pre-paid and post-paid billing, and cancel anytime with a monthly period or after 12 months with a yearly term. IONOS’s VPS plans start at $2 per month for 1 vCore, 512MB RAM, and 10GB SSD.
Pros & Cons
- Compatible with a variety of operating systems & administration tools
- Certified infrastructure with maximum security and a 99.99% uptime guarantee
- Easy administration with full root access and Plesk Obsidian management software
- Acronis backups cost an additional fee
- Plesk costs an additional fee
- Registration is available from a limited number of countries
UltaHost is a relatively new provider that was founded in 2018. In its short life span, it has managed to attract numerous customers with its blazing-fast performance, excellent service, and 100% uptime guarantee. It is known among customers for its reliability, stable performance, and always keeping your website online. Among the various services it offers, customers can find shared, VPS, VDS, WordPress, and other types of hosting, domains, and many excellent tools and services.
- Overall score: 4.9
- Features: 4.8
- Support: 4.9
- User Friendly: 4.9
- Pricing: 4.8
- Reliability: 4.9
Features: UltaHost provides many amazing free and paid features, including free DDoS protection, free domain transfer, multiple server locations, SSD-only servers, malware scans, SpamExperts, RocketBooster, Cloudflare CDN, built-in cache, free SSL Certificates, Web Application Firewall, unlimited bandwidth, root access, and built-in cache. We only gave it a 4.8 score because it does not include a free domain.
Support: UltaHost has a special Premium customer support service, which all UltaHost customers can access 24/7/365 via live chat, phone, email, and ticketing system. Additionally, it provides an extensive knowledge base with amazing tips and solutions and a server support service. The only reason we gave it a 4.9 score is due to some minor inconsistencies that users have reported regarding its ticketing system.
User Friendly: With UltaHost, customers can choose from multiple control panels, including Hestia and CyberPanel, which are free, and the cPanel and Plesk, which are paid. Additionally, its website has a simple and modern design, making it easy to navigate. The only reason we gave it a 4.9 score is due to the additional fees customers have to pay for Plesk and cPanel.
Pricing: UltaHost has a variety of hosting plans that are quite affordable. The cheapest managed VPS plan is its VPS Basic plan, which costs $5.5 per month if you get one of the free control panels. It comes with 1 CPU core, 1 GB RAM, 30 GB NVMe SSD storage, a managed server, and 1 IPv4 Dedicated IP address. However, we gave it a 4.8 score because users need to pay extra if they want the cPanel or Plesk.
Reliability: UltaHost is known among its customers for its amazing reliability and 100% uptime guarantee, which means that it promises its customers little to no downtime or latency issues. It also includes the Cloudflare CDN for free in all plans and uses only SSD NVMe storage. Additionally, all UltaHost servers are powered by 14th-generation Dell servers and configured to offer max redundancy regarding the network, power, and hard drive. Its built-in cache mechanism uses Varnish, Memcached, and Redis, which enhance the website speed. So, it’s no surprise that we gave it a 4.9 score.
Additional parameter – Server location: 4.8: It is crucial that the hosting provider you choose has data centers and servers in multiple locations so that your website doesn’t experience any latency issues and customers can access it anytime from anywhere. UltaHost does a great job in this department and has data centers located in Chicago, Dallas, New York, Los Angeles, the US; Toronto, Canada; Frankfurt, Germany; Istanbul, Turkey; New Delhi, India; Singapore; Seoul, South Korea; and Finland. Additionally, all of its servers use the most power-efficient Intel processors and Juniper and Cisco for network switching and routing. However, we gave it a 4.8 score because it does not have data centers in South America, Australia, and Africa, so customers from these regions will experience latency issues due to server distance.
Pros and Cons
- A 100% uptime guarantee
- 14th-generation Dell servers
- Built-in cache mechanism
- NVMe SSD storage
- Cloudflare CDN
- DNS Manager
- BitNinja security
- Malware scans and reports
- A 30-day money-back guarantee
- Integrations with popular apps
- HTTP/2-enabled servers
- No free domains
- No free domain transfers for monthly plans
Ranking comparison between the Top Providers
How Did We Choose The Top 5 Cheap VPS Hosting?
- Types Of Cheap VPS Hosting3%
- Customization Options10%
- Scaling Options3%
- Performance / Reliability10%
- Feature Set10%
- Ease of Use7%
- Customer Support7%
- User Reviews30%
How Do We Rank and How Should You Choose Your Cheap VPS?
At HostAdvice, we perform independent and category-specific tests. Our professionals engage in measurements separately of leading hosting providers and other ranking websites. Our people have years of experience in the web hosting world and are therefore qualified to grade the web hosts. In addition, we keep up-to-date with the newest technologies on the market and adjust our methods accordingly. We also consider unbiased user reviews and weigh them in our scores to add to our objectivity.
You will find a single weighted score for each cheap VPS hosting. This number is based on the most relevant factors for the category. We calculate the ratings considering the allocated percentage to each factor, depending on its contribution to the ideal cheap VPS plan. A higher percentage means the factor is more important for the category and vice versa; the lower this number, the less significant the factor.
Here are the factors we have used to rank the best cheap VPS hosting; it would be best to pay attention to the following aspects before you make your choice:
- Types Of Cheap VPS Hosting (3%): Does the provider offer unmanaged, managed, or semi-managed cheap VPS plans? While managed support will significantly facilitate your job, it’s more expensive than an unmanaged server.
- Customization Options (10%): Cheap VPS providers should allow you to configure your server, including the operating system and included resources. How much bandwidth and storage do you get within your cheap VPS plan? Can you create your package, depending on your needs? Furthermore, how much traffic can the plan handle? Is there support for popular CMSs, can you add your own OS image, and so on?
- Scaling Options (3%): How easily can you upgrade your cheap VPS plan once you exceed its limits? Can you move to another package or even another provider without downtime? Are website migrations human-powered, and can you even expect assistance in this regard? You should be able to upgrade easily without losing any data on your website, while the cheap VPS provider should be able to support unforeseen or unexpected traffic.
- Performance / Reliability (10%): While it’s cheap, you would be paying for nothing if your VPS is frequently down or slow. The best cheap hosting still delivers an uptime guarantee of at least 99.95% and generally better performance than other web hosting types, such as shared hosting. At this point, it would be best to consider the cheap VPS’s server network, global availability, speed, and security enhancements, such as SSDs, CDN, etc.
- Feature Set (10%): Cheap VPS hosting is narrower in terms of features than the pricier VPS plans. However, you can still expect many valuable extras, such as a beginner-friendly control panel, automated backups, domain, an SSL certificate, root access, numerous OS options & APIs, free migrations, and native IPv6 support, DDoS, firewalls, etc.
- Ease of Use (7%): Some cheap VPS hosting companies sacrifice ease of use to lower costs. However, even as a beginner or a first-time user, you should be able to find everything yourself and operate your VPS. The control panel should provide the basic functions at a minimum – you should be able to upgrade, downgrade, start, stop, or reboot in no time and without hassle.
- Customer Support (7%): If you encounter any type of issue with your VPS, the hosting company should be available to assist you round the clock. Opt for 24/7 technical service available across several channels, including live chat, email, or phone.
- Pricing (20%): You obviously wish to keep on a budget if you are looking for cheap VPS hosting. Still, the price itself might not always be the best quality indicator, and in most cases, it might be misleading. It would help to look at the price-value ratio and the fine print regarding deals, sales, and contracts. Review the terms of the contract and hidden fees – the price usually increases on renewal, so beware; it might exceed your budget in the following term. Also, what happens if you are unsatisfied with the service? Can you cancel the service and get a refund, i.e., a money-back guarantee? For how many days is this policy valid?
User Reviews (30%): How satisfied are worldwide customers with your potential cheap VPS hosting? Make sure to check the real-life experiences of people around the globe with the vendor of your interest. These are the most valid and unbiased indicators of one’s quality.
Things to Know About Cheap Virtual Private Servers Before You Purchase Yours
What else does choosing a hosting plan include once you’ve settled on VPS hosting? What criteria do you use to assess your resource and software requirements? What, moreover, do hosts mean when they talk about managed vs. unmanaged VPS hosting plans?
The Difference Between Managed and Unmanaged Cheap VPS Hosting
With unmanaged hosting, the user has almost complete control over and responsibility for the VPS. While this provides greater flexibility and is less expensive, it does, of course, ask for a higher level of technical expertise. This is a better alternative for folks who are tech-savvy rather than complete newbies.
If you have an unmanaged VPS, your provider is only responsible for the actual server and its uptime. So, in essence, it simply needs to offer the VPS and maintain the hardware; the rest is up to you.
And, because you’ll be handling the majority of the burden, this is usually the cheapest VPS option. Aside from that, you have complete administrative control over the server and are able to customize the VPS to meet your specific requirements.
Prepare to do a variety of duties, including:
- To install software and manage updates without the use of a graphical user interface.
- To Install and configure SSL certificates, backups, firewalls, and CDNs, among other things.
- Monitoring, troubleshooting, and defending the server from harmful attacks are just some of the things that may be done.
As a result, if you’re unfamiliar with the above or just don’t want to shoulder so many obligations, an unmanaged VPS isn’t the best option for you. Instead, you should consider a semi-managed or managed VPS.
In managed VPS hosting, the web hosting company takes care of all server-related concerns, such as upgrades, maintenance, and OS installs. This is perfect for folks who are less tech-savvy or want to have the backend handled by someone else. check out our Best Managed VPS page.
Typically, your managed VPS provider will provide the following services:
- The web hosting company’s tech-savvy crew is in charge of all server upkeep.
- The server is regularly scanned for malware, and a security audit is carried out to discover any vulnerabilities in order to avoid a breach.
- Managed VPS hosting includes a management panel that makes it simple to administer your website.
- Your server is being watched for traffic spikes to verify that your website can manage higher traffic without crashing during peak periods.
- The web hosting provider provides you with round-the-clock technical support.
This makes it ideal for people who are switching from shared to VPS hosting. It’s also appropriate for individuals who don’t want to devote a lot of time to hosting. Also, businesses that are focused on expansion, for example.
Of course, there’s a catch. Managed VPS hosting is more expensive than unmanaged and semi-managed VPS hosting in exchange for its ease. Furthermore, you lose some freedom because much of the power is in the hands of your hosting provider, making your choice of a hosting company critical.
Semi-managed VPS hosting is a medium ground between managed and unmanaged VPS hosting, where your provider will assist you with certain areas of server operation and maintenance. It’s a terrific alternative for individuals searching for some extra support with server management at a low cost.
In most circumstances, semi-managed companies may assist with tasks such as:
- Basic issues such as 404s
- Loading problems
- Problems with the network
- Configuration of essential services such as mail servers and FTP servers
- Installing or configuring the operating system and control panel
- Enhancements to security
Many semi-managed VPS providers also provide a control panel as part of their packages. Aside from that, because you’re still in charge of a big portion of your server, most semi-managed VPS hosting is still affordable. As a result, it’s a nice balance, as you receive the low cost of an unmanaged VPS while still not being left to fend for yourself.
It’s also worth noting that, in general, if you’re searching for low-cost VPS hosting, semi-managed hosting is the greatest option on the market.
Cheap VPS vs. Normal VPS – What Should You Expect?
VPS hosting typically outperforms other types of hosting, notably shared hosting. A regular VPS is often more expensive than other server alternatives since it includes more stable and robust hardware as well as Rapid SSD storage. The price boost stems from the improved quality and technology of the virtualization system employed.
Even with cheap VPS, you may also anticipate a plethora of configuration choices for your server. Many service providers, for example, will let you pick whatever Operating System (OS) you want to use as well as the resources that come with it. You will, however, be responsible for the majority of server configuration and management activities.
However, this depends on whether you choose a managed or unmanaged VPS service. While you’re still striving to build and scale your firm, cheap VPS hosting is an excellent approach to keep costs down. You won’t have access to the same features and tools as those on more expensive programs. With the correct VPS provider, though, you can receive everything you need to get your site up and running.
Pros and Cons of Cheap VPS Hosting
- Price: VPS hosting plans are available to suit almost any budget. If you’re searching for a low-cost VPS package, a competently managed server may be had for roughly $10 per month. This is appropriate, given that the provider is available to provide expert support and administer the server.
- Flexibility and Control: Private server hosting is far more adaptable than shared hosting, where the users are essentially forced to utilize whatever technology the provider installs. Even the cheapest VPS hosting service, on the other hand, may give you a lot more freedom. This is due to the fact that each virtual server has its own server stack, and whatever you install only impacts your section of the server.
- Security: Even while VPS web hosting might be quite safe, it is often less secure than having your own dedicated server.
- Technical Skills: With a VPS, someone must be responsible for selecting and maintaining the server stack, handling backups, and so on. If you don’t have any expertise in running a server, a managed plan is your best choice.
Factors To Consider When Choosing A Cheap VPS Hosting Plan
As we all know, low cost does not necessarily imply high quality. Here are a few things to think about if you’re seeking the optimal balance of cost-effectiveness and high quality:
- Uptime: Be aware of services that have a low uptime. It may be inexpensive, but if your website goes down, you’ve wasted your money.
- Bandwidth: It is critical if you anticipate having a few thousand visits every week. Slow loading times might mean the difference between someone staying on your site and leaving.
- Storage Space: Choose a plan with plenty of storage space if your site contains a lot of web pages or high-quality material (pictures, movies, etc.).
- Website’s Purpose: It may seem self-evident, but if you’re operating a company website, things like free email accounts for staff are a great touch to save you time.
It’s tempting to focus just on how the competitors are priced, for example, and choose a low-cost VPS provider without considering what you’re getting (or not getting) for the money.
As a result, there are various considerations to make when selecting a VPS server.
Web hosting companies utilize software to segment server resources into multiple Virtual Private Servers. This technology is known as virtualization. If you know how each VPS option is set up, you can make a more informed decision when it comes time to choose one. Various types of virtualization can result in differing performance, levels of security and access, and more.
Another consideration is the control panel that comes with your VPS. It’s vital to choose one that provides all of the features you want in an easy-to-use package. cPanel is the gold standard for many people. Some web providers, on the other hand, employ bespoke control panels, while others offer a variety of options.
You might also wish to pick a host with a familiar operating system. This might aid in the management of your VPS. If you don’t, you’ll be forced to learn a new system, which can be time-consuming. It’s worth noting that some servers allow you a choice of operating systems, but others only support one, such as Linux, Ubuntu, or CentOS.
Best Cheap VPS Services: Final Recommendations
It’s critical to weigh all of your alternatives while looking for low-cost VPS hosting. Looking at pricing alone is likely to result in a subpar solution and a waste of money. Any of these hosts might create a great experience for newcomers. There is, however, a lot more to consider for more experienced coders.
Please take a look at a provider that appears to be a suitable fit for your first VPS experience and see what it has to offer. The most important thing is to match your resources, capabilities, and demands with what the web host offers. Essentially, there’s always a trade-off, even with the best cheap VPS hosting – you’ll just have to find what works for you. Cheaper unmanaged or easier to use managed VPS? What is it going to be? Do you prioritize a user-friendly cPanel, Windows or other OS support, a CMS integration, robust security, or lots of freebies? Whatever you need, the market can supply.
However, checking the web host’s reputation is the most important indicator for a quality cheap VPS provider. Are other customers happy with the offer? Does the company have a bad history with frequent outages and so on? Follow our expert recommendations or other user reviews, but either way, don’t put your trust in the provider’s promises exclusively.