All web hosts support PHP, but many of these providers use outdated versions that can put your website or application at risk. If you want to build your site with a PHP-based CMS (content management system) like WordPress, you need a host that will keep up with the latest PHP releases, and give you the option to switch to the newest version when available.
Your host should also give you the option to temporarily stick to an older PHP release so you can prepare for the transition. The latest PHP version can improve your website’s security and performance, but the upgrade should be tested in a staging area first. If some of your scripts or plugins are incompatible, making the switch could break your site.
To find the best PHP hosting providers, I’ve researched and tested dozens of services. I looked for hosts that make new PHP versions available as soon as they’re released, but I’ve also prioritized performance, security, and support for PHP-based applications. These are the hosts that made the cut.
Short on Time? These Are the Best PHP Hosting Services:
- Hostinger – Fast, PHP-optimized hosting at an affordable price.
- InterServer – Unlimited storage and bandwidth with FastCGI for PHP pages.
- A2 Hosting – Optimized WordPress installation with preconfigured plugins.
What We Look For in the Best PHP Hosting Providers
In my list, I’ve included fast and reliable web hosts with these extra features:
- Multiple PHP versions. I’ve looked for hosts that let you choose your own PHP version for each website or application. I also made sure that it’s easy to switch between different PHP releases.
- PHP updates. I’ve included only those providers that make the latest PHP versions available to you shortly after their release. You’ll still have the option to use an older version until you’re ready to switch.
- PHP-based applications. I’ve selected hosts that support popular PHP-dependent CMSs like WordPress, Drupal, and Joomla. In addition to one-click installers, some providers on my list also offer automatic updates for these applications.
- Extra features. Handlers like suPHP or FastCGI can help you better secure your website and improve its performance. Some of the hosts on my list have these tools preinstalled.
- Pricing. PHP is a free, open-source scripting language, so PHP hosting should be budget-friendly. There’s no room on my list for sneaky hosts that charge extra for basic features like PHP updates.
Hostinger is the cheapest PHP hosting provider on my list, and surprisingly, it’s also the fastest web host I’ve tested. Its shared hosting platform supports the latest PHP releases (including 7.4, 8.0, and 8.1), and you can easily switch between versions using the proprietary control panel.
Hostinger is also pretty generous with resources. Even on the Single shared hosting plan, you get 30GB of storage space and 100GB of bandwidth, which is more than enough for a regular PHP-based website.
That said, if you’re a PHP developer, you might want to upgrade to the Premium plan, which is slightly more expensive but includes SSH access and unlimited MySQL databases.
- PHP-optimized servers. Hostinger offers PHP and MySQL updates as soon as these become available. Its servers use LiteSpeed technology for improved performance and stability, and the HTTP/2 protocol is enabled by default to process more concurrent user requests.
- PHP cache plugin. LSCache is one of the best caching solutions for websites built with PHP-based CMSs like WordPress or Joomla. With Hostinger, LSCache is already integrated into your dashboard, so you can activate it with just a couple of clicks.
- User-friendly control panel. Hostinger’s hPanel is more streamlined and far less cluttered than cPanel. For example, you can quickly switch between different PHP versions by visiting the PHP Configuration menu in the Advanced settings.
- Access Manager. If you’re working with a PHP developer to build or maintain your website, this feature allows you to grant access only to certain sections within your hosting account.
|PHP versions supported||5.2 to 8.1|
|Automatic PHP updates||No|
|Best feature||LiteSpeed cache plugin|
InterServer has a single Standard shared hosting plan with unlimited storage, websites, MySQL databases, and bandwidth. PHP versions 5.5 and 5.6, as well as 7.0 and higher, are all supported. Several performance tools for PHP-based sites are also included.
The cPanel control panel is preinstalled, so you can switch between PHP versions and change PHP settings using a simple interface.
Given that the Standard plan is packed with features, you’d expect it to be expensive, but it isn’t. Although it’s not as cheap as Hostinger’s entry-level plan, it’s still more affordable than most of the others on my list.
If you aren’t ready to make a long-term commitment, InterServer’s low-cost monthly billing is much cheaper than the month-to-month plans offered by most other providers.
- Support for hundreds of PHP scripts. InterServer’s one-click installer can help you quickly set up PHP-based CMSs like WordPress, PHPFusion, phpBB, and more. It’s also easy to add galleries, contact forms, and other functions to your website.
- PHP Selector. InterServer’s version of cPanel comes with a PHP menu that makes it easier to select your version and enable extensions. For example, you can easily activate OPcache to enhance your website’s performance.
- FastCGI enabled. This protocol is one of the fastest ways to execute PHP scripts, and it can significantly boost your website’s speed. Most web hosts will ask you to upgrade to a VPS in order to enable FastCGI, but with InterServer, it’s included in the Standard shared hosting plan.
- LiteSpeed web server. LiteSpeed is arguably the best web server software for PHP-based CMSs like WordPress. It’s faster than the more traditional Apache, and far more dependable during traffic spikes.
|PHP versions supported||5.5 to 8.1|
|Automatic PHP updates||No|
|Best feature||FastCGI protocol|
A2 Hosting has a solid reputation for fast loading speeds and reliable uptime. You can expect outstanding performance even on the cheaper plans, and PHP versions up to 8.1 are all supported.
The entry-level Startup plan includes a generous 100GB of storage space and unmetered bandwidth for one hosted site. A2 Hosting is also very transparent about the CPU and RAM included for each shared hosting plan. For example, Startup has 1 CPU core and 0.7GB of RAM, which is enough to serve a small PHP-based website or portfolio.
A2 Hosting’s customer support could use an overhaul, but there is an extensive knowledge base where you’ll find answers to most PHP-related questions. You’ll also get a lot of user-friendly features, like a drag-and-drop website builder, to help you get your website up and running.
- A2 Optimized apps. A2 Hosting’s one-click installer includes optimized versions of the most popular PHP-based CMSs. For example, the A2 Optimized WordPress install comes with custom WordPress settings and several preconfigured plugins for enhanced performance and security.
- A2 Turbo servers. These enhanced servers include several optimizations for PHP-based websites, such as the LiteSpeed web server and LSCache plugin. The HTTP/3 over QUIC protocol is also enabled for faster delivery of PHP-driven pages.
- Patchman security scanner. Designed for PHP applications like WordPress, Drupal, and Joomla, Patchman is a security tool that notifies you when your software is outdated. It also applies essential patches shortly after their release, and enables you to quarantine any suspicious files.
- PHP 8.1 enabled on VPS. A2 Hosting is one of very few web hosts that already supports PHP 8.1. If you’re a developer eager to experiment with this version, you can opt for one of A2’s cheap self-managed VPS plans.
|PHP versions supported||4.4 to 8.1|
|Automatic PHP updates||No|
|Best feature||A2 Optimized CMS installations|
PHP optimizations can only do so much. If you want your website or application to load as quickly as possible, you should choose a data center near your target audience. Enter FastComet and its impressive global network of 11 data centers.
FastComet is not only present in North America and Europe, but also in Mumbai, Tokyo, and Sydney. If your audience resides in one of the last three regions, FastComet is essentially one of the very few low-cost, reliable hosts that can reach them.
FastComet’s cheapest shared hosting plan comes with 15GB of storage space and 30GB of bandwidth, which is more than enough for a small to medium site. PHP versions 5.6 and 7.0 and higher are all supported, and PHP 7.4 is enabled by default. It’s also easy to select different versions for your website or app thanks to FastComet’s Version Switcher.
- Automatic updates for PHP applications. Softaculous is primarily a one-click app installer, but you can also use it to set up automatic updates for popular PHP-based CMSs like WordPress, Joomla, or Drupal. Softaculous is included with all FastComet plans.
- Apache mod_lsapi. Included in the FastCloud Extra plan, this Apache module is a drop-in replacement for several PHP tools like suPHP and FastCGI. In short, it enhances the performance and stability of your website, and it’s super easy to activate.
- Additional layers of caching. The FastCloud Extra plan also includes Varnish, Memcached, OPcache, and APC (Alternative PHP Cache). These tools streamline the delivery of PHP-driven content so your visitors can enjoy faster loading speeds.
- PHP tech support. Unlike other hosts, FastComet will offer assistance with issues related to open source PHP applications like WordPress.
|PHP versions supported||5.6 to 8.1|
|Automatic PHP updates||No|
|Best feature||Multiple layers of caching for PHP-based websites|
GreenGeeks’ shared hosting plans are fairly affordable, and they all come with unlimited storage and bandwidth, as well as outstanding tech support. PHP versions 5.2 through 8.0 are all available, and the latest version is enabled by default.
If you want extensive help while you build your PHP-based website, GreenGeeks should be at the top of your list. When I asked a support agent to help me optimize my WordPress website, the agent implemented various improvements for me. Most support agents would just send me a link to a DIY article in their knowledge base and call it a day, but GreenGeeks’ agents really go the extra mile.
Another big plus with GreenGeeks is that automatic updates and backups for several PHP-based CMSs are included in all plans. You don’t have to worry about running outdated software, and you can always restore an earlier version of your website if something goes wrong.
- HTTP/3 with QUIC. This latest protocol is designed to deliver PHP pages significantly faster than HTTP/2 with TCP. HTTP/3 is automatically enabled on GreenGeeks.
- MariaDB. A faster alternative to MySQL databases, MariaDB is equally compatible with PHP and fully supported on GreenGeeks’ platform.
- Cloudflare CDN. Activating Cloudflare can considerably boost your website’s performance for visitors from around the world. Although the CDN didn’t always cache PHP files, it can now be configured to do so in the Rules app, under Page Rules.
- Free SSH and SFTP access. Developers can securely upload PHP code to the server through SFTP. SSH access is also free, even on the cheapest shared hosting plan.
|PHP versions supported||5.2 to 8.0|
|Automatic PHP updates||No|
|Best feature||HTTP/3 enabled|
SiteGround’s biggest advantage is Site Tools, a proprietary control panel that makes it easy to manage your websites, PHP versions, and software. You can also create subdomains, FPT accounts, and activate caching and CDN. If you’re after a polished dashboard that makes web hosting as simple as possible, this is it.
SiteGround’s cheapest plan is just $2.99 per month, and you’ll get 10GB of storage and unmetered traffic. PHP versions 5.6 and higher are all supported. To enhance your site’s performance, you can enable static cache, dynamic cache, and Memcached through SiteGround’s SuperCacher feature.
But to take advantage of SiteGround’s PHP optimization, you’ll have to upgrade to either the GrowBig or GoGeek plans, neither of which is as affordable as most of the other options on this list.
- Optimized for PHP. SiteGround uses NGINX as a reverse proxy, which can speed up the delivery of PHP-based websites. Additional PHP optimizations, including Memcached and OPcache, are also available for all plans.
- Managed PHP updates. Unless you specifically select an older version, SiteGround regularly updates your PHP. The transfer is managed, so the tech team will first make sure that the new version won’t break your site. SiteGround’s current managed PHP version is 7.4.27.
- Managed WordPress features. All of SiteGround’s shared hosting plans include automatic WordPress core and plugin updates, a neat website starter wizard, expert WordPress support, and more.
- Ultrafast PHP. Available on the GrowBig, GoGeek and cloud hosting plans, Ultrafast PHP is a customized server setup designed to make WordPress websites up to 30% faster. This configuration is especially useful for websites that see a lot of traffic.
|PHP versions supported||5.6 to 8.1|
|Automatic PHP updates||Yes (managed)|
|Best feature||Ultrafast PHP for high-traffic sites|
InMotion Hosting has a data center on each US coast, which makes it best suited to serve a US audience. Its entry-level shared hosting plan is fairly affordable, and it comes with two websites, 50GB of storage, and unmetered bandwidth. The latest PHP versions are all supported, and PHP 7.4 is active by default.
In many ways, InMotion Hosting is similar to InterServer. For instance, they’re both US-based and they both offer cPanel to help you manage your websites and PHP versions. That said, InMotion is significantly pricier, especially after renewals kick in.
The one advantage that InMotion has over InterServer is its customer support. Although a little slow to respond, the agents are knowledgeable and helpful, which is more than I can say for InterServer.
- PHP-FPM enabled. One of the most advanced PHP script processors, PHP-FPM can handle higher amounts of traffic while using fewer server resources. Expect faster loading speeds and a more reliable service.
- NGINX reverse proxy. InMotion Hosting uses the Apache web server with NGINX as a reverse proxy. This adds an extra layer of security, and helps your PHP-based website handle more concurrent requests.
- Excellent PHP documentation. InMotion has an extensive knowledge base with lots of guides and tutorials for PHP-related issues. Here, you’ll find everything you need to tweak or optimize your PHP settings, even if you’re a beginner.
|PHP versions supported||5.4 to 8.0|
|Automatic PHP updates||No|
|Best feature||PHP-FPM enabled|
These Are the Best PHP Hosting Providers, but Which Is Right for You?
There’s no “one-size-fits-all” when it comes to PHP hosting, so you have to decide which features are most important to you. Every web host on my list offers PHP 8.0 or PHP 8.1, as well as a few earlier releases, but there are some important differences between them.
For instance, if you want a cheap PHP hosting provider that also delivers outstanding performance, Hostinger is your best bet. Its servers are optimized for PHP-based websites, and you can take advantage of LSCache to get the best possible website loading speeds.
Alternatively, you can pay a bit more to get InterServer’s Standard shared hosting plan, which comes with unlimited resources and is FastCGI enabled. InterServer is also your cheapest option if you’d like the flexibility of monthly billing.
That said, if you want quality customer support, you might want to consider GreenGeeks instead. The fact that it uses HTTP/3 over QUIC by default is a nice bonus, since this is guaranteed to deliver great loading speeds.
Or, if your audience is mainly from India, East Asia, or Oceania, FastComet should be at the top of your list. The FastCloud Extra plan is pretty expensive, but it comes with some impressive caching solutions for PHP-heavy websites and apps.
Here’s a quick recap of my top PHP hosting providers.
|Standout Features||Latest PHP Version||Money-Back Guarantee||Starting Price|
|Hostinger||PHP-optimized servers, LSCache, hPanel for simple PHP version control||8.1||30 days||$1.99|
|InterServer||One-click installer for hundreds of PHP scripts, FastCGI enabled, LiteSpeed web server||8.1||30 days||$2.50|
|A2 Hosting||Optimized installations for PHP applications, custom Turbo servers||8.1||30 days||$6.99|
|FastComet||Automatic updates for PHP applications, multiple layers of caching||8.1||45 days||$2.95|
|GreenGeeks||HTTP/3 over QUIC, MariaDB, extensive tech support for PHP-based CMS||8.0||30 days||$2.95|
|SiteGround||Managed PHP updates, NGINX reverse proxy, Ultrafast PHP||8.1||30 days||$2.99|
|InMotion Hosting||PHP-FPM enabled, NGINX reverse proxy, PHP documentation||8.0||90 days||$3.29|
What is PHP hosting?Among other things, PHP code allows HTML pages to communicate with a database to show dynamic content, like an ever-changing list of the latest blog posts in WordPress. Pretty much every web host supports the PHP scripting language, but only some providers keep up with the latest PHP versions. In addition, the best PHP hosting services give you extra tools to improve your website’s speed and security. To give you just one example, Hostinger supports all PHP versions up to 8.1, and makes it easier for you to update your PHP. It also hosts your website on a LiteSpeed web server, which is arguably the best option for PHP-based CMSs like WordPress.What is the best hosting for PHP?While there are some outstanding PHP hosting providers out there, you won’t find one host that suits everyone’s needs. For instance, InterServer has an affordable shared hosting plan with tools like FastCGI and Softaculous, but its customer support is mediocre at best. Other hosts – like GreenGeeks, for example – have excellent customer support for PHP-based applications, but they’re also more expensive. At the end of the day, finding the best PHP hosting depends on your specific priorities. To compare some of the best options currently in the industry, check out our list of the best web hosting services in 2022.Which server is best for PHP?Not long ago, the consensus was that PHP worked best on a so-called LAMP stack, which consisted of the Linux operating system, the Apache web server, a MySQL database, and the PHP scripting language. Recently, however, Apache has fallen behind other, more recently developed web servers, including LiteSpeed and NGINX. The latter two are not only faster than Apache, but they can also handle heavier traffic. This is why many of the best PHP hosting providers have switched to LiteSpeed, NGINX, or a combination of Apache with an NGINX reverse proxy.Can I host a PHP site for free?Yes, but be cautious. Most free web hosts support PHP-based websites, but some of them fill your site with cheap-looking ads, while others compromise on security and performance. If you’re looking for a wallet-friendly option, head on over to our coupons and deals page for some great discounts.