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What We Look For in the Best Free VPS Hosting Services1. Scala Hosting – Flexible Managed VPS with an “Anytime” Money-Back Guarantee2. Kamatera - 30-Day Trial with $100 Credit to Try Out a Powerful Cloud VPS3. IONOS – 30-Day Guarantee For Cheap Unmanaged VPS4. Cloudways – 3-Day Trial For Managed Service on the Biggest Cloud Platforms5. GreenGeeks – 30 Days to Try Beginner-Friendly Managed VPS With Great SupportFinding the Best VPS Trial for YouFAQ
Short on time? These are the best web hosts with free VPS trials in May 2023:
- Scala Hosting – Managed VPS with an intuitive control panel & “anytime” money-back guarantee
- Kamatera – 30-day free access to a cloud VPS with $100 credit and some nice extras
- IONOS – Cheap unmanaged VPS you can try risk-free for 30 days
What We Look For in the Best Free VPS Hosting Services
- Easy cancellation – Some hosts like to entice you into a free trial, only to make the cancellation process as difficult as possible. I chose hosts that let you cancel your account easily.
- Long trial length – A short trial isn’t going to give you enough time to properly evaluate a host’s services. That’s why most of the free trials on this list are at least 30 days long.
- Flexibility – A VPS is highly customizable and your needs can be highly individual. The VPS trials on this list allow you to try out multiple configurations and features without imposing too many limits.
- Fast server setup – Wasting the first few days of your trial waiting for the server to be set up and made available isn’t fun. Hosts which can provide a quick set up of your server earned some extra brownie points.
Scala Hosting offers customizable managed VPSs with an impressive “anytime” money-back guarantee. This means that you can request a refund at any time, and you’ll get money back for the unused portion of your contract. You can also cancel within the first 30 days to get a full refund, giving you plenty of time to test Scala Hosting risk-free.
You’ll get the usual perks of VPS management. A support team will set up your VPS, optimize its performance, update it with the latest patches, perform daily remote backups, monitor its uptime, and scan for malware. All of this means that you can fully focus on testing Scala Hosting. Just keep in mind that the managed plans only offer Rocky Linux or Alma Linux as the OS. Scala Hosting also has a proprietary control panel called SPanel, although you do have the choice of paying for the popular cPanel if you wish. However, SPanel is a great alternative. It makes VPS management a breeze and you can have unlimited accounts without incurring an extra cost. All in all, Scala Hosting is perfect for beginners – it’s easy to work with and you can get a refund at any time.
Scala Hosting VPS Hosting
Plan NameStorageBandwidthCPURAMPricePlan NameStorageBandwidthCPURAMPriceBuild #150 GB NVMe SSDUnmetered2 cores4 GB$29.95More detailsBuild #2100 GB NVMe SSDUnmetered4 cores8 GB$63.95More detailsBuild #3150 GB NVMe SSDUnmetered8 cores16 GB$121.95More detailsBuild #4200 GB NVMe SSDUnmetered12 cores24 GB$179.95More detailsSelf-Managed Custom BuildCustomCustomCustomCustom$20.00More detailsMore details
A free domain name is included with some hosting plans from Scala Hosting
- Scalable resources – You can scale your resources up or down at any time. However, this does require a reboot of your server.
- Self-managed VPS – There’s also the option of unmanaged VPS. While you lose all the benefits of managed VPS, you do gain root access, allowing for a lot more customizability.
- SShield security – If you choose the free SPanel, you also get SShield security for free. This is an AI solution that monitors your server, blocking web attacks and notifying you of any vulnerabilities.
- Unlimited website migration – With managed VPS, Scala Hosting will migrate an unlimited amount of websites to its hosting service.
|Length of free trial||30 days (money-back guarantee)|
|Data center locations||Dallas, New York, and Sofia (Bulgaria)|
|Beginner-friendly?||Yes, if you choose the managed plan|
|Starting price for cheapest VPS plan||$20.00|
|Resources||Fully customizable, up to 1-24 vCPUs, 4GB-64GB RAM, 50GB-2000GB NVMe SSD, unmetered bandwidth|
Kamatera offers a powerful cloud VPS hosting solution, where rather than hosting your site on a single physical server, you have access to a cluster of cloud servers across the world. This comes with many benefits, including the ability to scale your resources instantly. With such highly customizable servers, I was worried that Kamatera’s free trial may be tightly-controlled, but that wasn’t the case. The 30-day free trial is generous, giving you access to a single cloud VPS with $100 credit for the month. Even after the trial, the prices are very affordable.
As long as you stay under this $100 limit, you can scale your resources as you please, and even add or remove optional features such as firewalls, load balancers, and so on. A word of warning though – if you do end up accidentally going over the $100 credit, you will be charged for the excess. But as long as you don’t go too crazy, you should be able to get a real taste of the powerful cloud VPS Kamatera offers without paying a dime.
Kamatera Cloud Hosting
- Great performance – Kamatera’s cloud VPS use powerful Intel Xeon Platinum processors, providing your site with impressive speeds.
- Designated account manager – During the length of the trial, you’ll get access to a designated account manager who will answer any questions you may have about Kamatera’s service. You even get technical advice about the ideal VPS configuration for your needs.
- Fast server setup – Upon signing up, your server will be set up and available within a minute.
- 24/7 technical support – The free trial includes access to Kamatera’s technical support team, which is available through phone, email, and tickets.
|Length of free trial||30 days|
|Data center locations||New York, Texas, California, Illinois, Florida, Toronto, Amsterdam, Frankfurt, London, Italy, Sweden, Spain, Hong Kong, Petach Tikva, Haifa, Rosh Haayin, Tel Aviv|
|Starting price for cheapest VPS plan||$4.00|
|Resources||Fully customizable, up to 104 vCPUs, 512GB RAM, 4000GB SSD storage, 5000GB bandwidth per month|
If you’re looking for one of the cheapest self-managed solutions on the market, IONOS offers VPS plans starting at just $2.00. Even with such a small entry-fee, you’ll still benefit from a 30-day money-back guarantee. While IONOS is certainly a budget solution, it still offered good performance and uptime in our tests. In addition, you’ll get some nice premium features: you can create temporary snapshots of your VPS at any time, and all customers are assigned a dedicated personal adviser to help answer any queries. That said, it can be hard to get in touch with your adviser at times, and they won’t help you manage your server. To get the most value out of IONOS, you’ll need to know how to configure, optimize, and maintain a VPS server.
1&1 IONOS VPS Hosting
Plan NameStorageBandwidthCPURAMPricePlan NameStorageBandwidthCPURAMPriceVPS S10 GBunlimited1 core512 MB$2.00More detailsVPS M80 GBunlimited2 cores2 GB$4.00More detailsVPS L120 GBunlimited2 cores4 GB$8.00More detailsVPS XL160 GBunlimited4 cores8 GB$2.00More detailsVPS XXL240 GBunlimited6 cores12 GB$18.00More detailsMore details
A free domain name is included with some hosting plans from 1&1 IONOS
- Unlimited traffic – All IONOS servers allow for unlimited traffic – you’ll never reach a cap or have to pay overage fees.
- Secure cloud backups – For an added fee, you can purchase cloud backup storage with integrated malware protection and robust encryption. You can take full or incremental backups.
- Premium support available – You can call IONOS support for help with advanced tasks, such as installing or troubleshooting server software. You’ll have to pay a fee for this service.
- Manage your VPS on-the-go – IONOS is one of the few VPS hosts with a responsive and functional mobile app. You can manage your servers, monitor performance, pay invoices, and more.
|Length of free trial||30 days (money-back guarantee)|
|Data center locations||United States, United Kingdom, Germany, Spain|
|Starting price for cheapest VPS plan||$2.00|
|Resources||1-8vCPUs, 512MB-24GB RAM, 10GB-240GB SSD storage, unlimited traffic|
Rather than providing web hosting services on its own servers, Cloudways instead acts as a management service for some of the biggest cloud hosts, such as Google Cloud and Amazon AWS. You then benefit from the top performance of these hosting companies without needing to know how to configure a virtual server yourself. Despite being a third-party, you can purchase a variety of hosting plans from multiple vendors directly through Cloudways. You’ll never need to actually work with the company providing the infrastructure – and you can use the user-friendly Cloudways platform to manage your server instances. Cloudways does offer a 3-day free trial – it’s very short, but no credit card is required to sign-up. Outside of the trial, prices can be comparable to Scala Hosting, but this depends on the infrastructure provider you choose. Choosing DigitalOcean, Linode, or Vultr will cost you less, whereas Google Cloud or Amazon AWS will cost you more.
Cloudways Cloud Hosting
Plan NameStorageBandwidthCPURAMPricePlan NameStorageBandwidthCPURAMPriceDO1GB25 GB1 TB1 CORE1 GB$11.00More detailsDO2GB50 GB2 TB1 CORE2 GB$24.00More detailsDO4GB80 GB4 TB2 CORES4 GB$46.00More detailsDO8GB160 GB5 TB4 CORES8 GB$88.00More detailsLinode1GB25 GB1 TB1 CORE1 GB$14.00More detailsLinode2GB50 GB2 TB1 CORE2 GB$28.00More detailsLinode4GB80 GB4 TB2 CORES4 GB$59.00More detailsLinode8GB160 GB5 TB4 CORES8 GB$105.00More detailsVULTR1GB25 GB1 TB1 CORE1 GB$14.00More detailsVULTR2GB40 GB2 TB1 CORE2 GB$28.00More detailsVULTR4GB60 GB3 TB2 CORES4 GB$54.00More detailsVULTR8GB100 GB4 TB4 CORES8 GB$99.00More detailsAWS Small20 GB2 GB1 CORE1.75GB$38.56More detailsAWS Medium20 GB2 GB1 CORE3.75GB$91.84More detailsAWS CO Large20 GB2 GB2 CORES4GB$164.50More detailsAWS Large20 GB2 GB4 CORES8 GB$183.22More detailsGCE Small20 GB2 GB1vCPU1.70 GB$37.45More detailsGCE Medium20 GB2 GB1vCPU3.75 GB$84.12More detailsMore details
- Easy WordPress installation – Cloudways has software that can automatically install multiple instances of WordPress for you on a single server. From there, you’ll get Cloudways’ pre-optimized hosting stack for top WordPress performance.
- Dedicated staging environment – You can launch a dedicated staging area to test site changes and new plugins without affecting your live site. Once you’re ready, you can push these changes to the live site with a single click.
- Premium CDN – All Cloudways plans benefit from the premium Cloudflare Enterprise CDN, which significantly increases the performance of your site across the globe. This includes image and mobile optimization as well as an additional layer of security.
- Guaranteed response times from support – Cloudways Standard support guarantees a response within 12 hours to a support ticket, or 3 hours for a high-priority ticket. If Cloudways doesn’t meet these promises, you’ll be entitled to service credits.
|Length of free trial||3 days|
|Data center locations||65+ data centers across all major continents|
|Starting price for cheapest VPS plan||$11.00|
|Resources||1-4vCPU, 1GB-16GB RAM, 20GB-256GB SSD storage, 2GB-5TB bandwidth|
5. GreenGeeks – 30 Days to Try Beginner-Friendly Managed VPS With Great SupportGreenGeeks only offers three managed VPS plans – but each of them gives you great managed service and technical support. Thankfully, you can try GreenGeeks out with a 30-day money-back guarantee before you commit. All GreenGeeks VPSs are optimized and secured for you, and include ongoing maintenance. Also included is a cPanel Solo license so you can start setting up sites immediately. GreenGeeks’ technical support truly stands out. While they won’t touch custom software or your site’s code, they’ll do their best to help you with all the basics – even going so far as performing technical tasks for you. My colleagues have had GreenGeeks support install WordPress, configure optimization plugins, and more. This can be incredibly helpful for a beginner to VPS.
GreenGeeks VPS Hosting
A free domain name is included with some hosting plans from GreenGeeks
- Softaculous included – The free cPanel license includes the useful Softaculous app installer. This lets you install over 350 applications, each with a single click.
- Proactive 24/7 monitoring – As part of its managed service, GreenGeeks will monitor your server for issues. If an issue is detected, the support team will automatically jump in to solve it.
- RAID-10 SSD – GreenGeeks’ SSD storage is kept in a highly redundant RAID-10 array. With this configuration, your data will be mirrored across multiple drives to prevent loss.
- Free dedicated IP – Every GreenGeeks VPS plan comes with a free dedicated IP. All IPs are blacklist-checked beforehand to ensure you’re given a clean address.
|Length of free trial||30 days (money-back guarantee)|
|Data center locations||Chicago, Montreal, Amsterdam|
|Starting price for cheapest VPS plan||$39.95|
|Resources||4-6vCPU, 2GB-8GB RAM, 50GB-150GB SSD, 10TB data transfer|
Finding the Best VPS Trial for YouSo, which free VPS trial is best for you? It depends on your needs. If you’re looking for a beginner-friendly and customizable VPS, you can’t go wrong with Scala Hosting. Its proprietary SPanel makes VPS hosting intuitive and you get an anytime money-back guarantee for all unused features. On the other hand, if you’re a developer who needs fully customizable servers that can be scaled up or down on short notice, I recommend Kamatera. It offers a flexible 30 day trial with $100 free credit. If you’re looking for the cheapest option for unmanaged VPS, check out IONOS. You’ll get 30 days to try it out, and if it meets your expectations, you’ll pay less than you would with many other alternatives. Still unsure? You can check out the table below for a side-by-side comparison.
|Trial Length||Good for Beginners?||Standout Feature||Starting Price After Trial|
|Scala Hosting||30 days||Yes, if you choose a managed plan||Fully-managed VPS with an easy-to-use control panel & anytime guarantee||$20.00|
|Kamatera||30 days||No, Cloud VPS is completely unmanaged||Fully-customizable Cloud VPS with great performance||$4.00|
|IONOS||30 days||No, VPS is completely unmanaged||Cheapest option for unmanaged VPS||$2.00|
|Cloudways||3 days||Yes, Cloud VPS are fully managed||VPS management for the biggest cloud platforms||$11.00|
|GreenGeeks||30 days||Yes, VPS are fully managed||Beginner-friendly managed VPS with helpful technical support||$39.95|