An Amazing Bargain, or “You Get What You Pay For”?
When a month of hosting costs less than your morning coffee at Starbucks, can you really expect high speeds and good performance?
Well, it depends.
Hostinger is a lot like the Starbucks of hosting. It’s a giant company, currently serving almost 30 million customers around the world. It’s got shared, cloud, and VPS solutions, and data centers on four different continents.
All this sounds great, but what’s really interesting is those super-low prices.
If you’re like me, those prices make you raise an eyebrow. Let’s face it – your website is going to need its daily dose of energy. You don’t want to commit to a cheap, long-term plan, only to be stuck with a big cup of lukewarm decaf.
I decided to check if Hostinger can really provide quality hosting for such low prices, or if this is yet another case of “you get what you pay for.”
Now, when I say quality, I mean quality. I wouldn’t want you to sign up for a host that doesn’t meet my standards as far as speed, performance, features, ease of use, and customer support are concerned.
Don’t take any risks. Read on to find out if Hostinger is the right host for you.
Powerful Features Give You Absolute Control
Some web hosts force you to build a site that plays nicely with their own limitations. They make you think small and dream small, leading to a final product that’s miles away from what you’d originally envisioned.
A few years back, it happened to me. A low-cost plan lured me in, and after setting up my blog, I realized that not only was my drive limited to a measly 200MB, but that the company didn’t offer email hosting. Cue purchasing additional hosting and paying double.
Hostinger is the exact opposite of these hosts. Instead of limiting you, it provides a canvas to your imagination.
With Hostinger you’ll enjoy an excellent mix of beginner-friendly and advanced features. If this is your first time using a web host, worry not – Hostinger does most of the heavy lifting for you. One-click installations can get your new blog up in seconds, and the company has its servers optimized especially for WordPress.
If you have some experience in web development, you’ll appreciate the many extra features the platform offers. Among them are integrations with CloudFlare CDN, daily and weekly website backups, and website caching to speed up loading for your visitors.
Hostinger’s plans are divided into shared, cloud, and VPS categories, with each plan offering a slightly different mix of features and options. As such, it’s important to identify your needs and choose accordingly. Small to medium websites, whether personal blogs or local business pages, will be very comfortable with the shared hosting plans.
International e-commerce brands and big businesses, on the other hand, require customized solutions that include custom backups and restore points, staging environments, development frameworks, and much more.
Such advanced needs are usually met by VPS hosting or dedicated servers. While it doesn’t offer dedicated hardware, Hostinger does provide a nice variety of VPS configurations to choose from.
Now, let’s take a look at some of the most interesting features Hostinger has to offer.
The hPanel Control Panel Makes Managing Your Hosting a Cinch
I’ve encountered quite a few control panels during my online travels, all aiming to provide the most feature-rich user experience. Surprisingly, I never had the pleasure of using hPanel. Never even heard of it. But it sure sounded familiar.
It turns out that Hostinger took cPanel, the industry standard for hosting control panels, and slyly switched the “c” with an “h”. Clever devils.
At its core, this the same old lovable cPanel, and anybody who’s ever used it before will feel right at home. It offers all the usual hosting features, although Hostinger did revamp the technology behind it.
Like cPanel, Hostinger’s panel lets you easily install a CMS and set up your account information, email accounts and integrations, domain configurations, databases, files, permissions, and more.
One of the interesting things I found was that Hostinger moved the computing load off the server and on to a cloud infrastructure. I’m happy to report that compared to regular cPanel hosting, my response times with hPanel were significantly faster.
Generous Resource Allocation Gives You Peace of Mind
Your website is going to have text, obviously, but it’s the images, videos, and various media files that are going to give it real personality. Those files can weigh quite a bit, and to host them all, you’re going to need sufficient hosting space and sufficient bandwidth.
On the most basic shared hosting plan, Hostinger provides you with 10GB of SSD space. An optimized HD image weighs less than 1MB, so things are looking good!
That same basic plan gives you 100GB of bandwidth a month, which is roughly 25,000 monthly visitors. One plan up and you’ll be treated to an unlimited bandwidth buffet.
However, I think it’s a shame no Hostinger plan offers unlimited hosting space. There are web hosts that do (within “fair use” terms), and it would’ve been great if Hostinger was one them.
Easy One-Click Installs
Back in the old days of the early 2010s, when dinosaurs ruled the earth, installing a Content Management Platform (or CMS for short) was quite the challenge. You had to open up databases, set user privileges, configure access… don’t even get me started.
Softaculous changed all that, automating installations for popular platforms like WordPress, Joomla, and Magento. Today, it provides one-click installations for hundreds of different CMS, and Hostinger’s hPanel lets your harness all that power with a nifty “Auto Installer” button.
The basic shared hosting plan, Single, is a great place to get started and stretch your web muscles, but you’ll eventually outgrow it. For example, when I first opened my online store, I made do with two email addresses. After I started picking up some traffic, I needed separate addresses for sales, support, and for each of my employees.
When that time comes for you, your hosting provider has to be able to grow with you. Advanced plans need to provide an immediate increase in resources and options, without any downtime to your website.
With the Premium and Business plans, that’s exactly what happens. Your site will stay live, and you’ll get unlimited bandwidth, unlimited domains (that’s an unlimited number of websites!), unlimited databases, unlimited email accounts, and much more. The future looks bright for you, young webmaster.
Ease of use
Being a Webmaster Has Never Been Easier
While a wealth of features and options gives you the power to do whatever you want, it’s not going to do you much good if they’re not easily accessible and straightforward to use.
Luckily, Hostinger has some of the best user experience people in the business, and I think they did a fantastic job understanding our needs and providing an easy-to-use solution. Creating an account and managing your hosting has never been easier.
Creating a New Account
First step is the sign up process. The plans are clearly laid out, and you can easily compare different plans and understand the differences. Just add to cart, choose your payment cycle, and checkout. Got any questions? Support is a live chat away.
You can read about my full experience signing up with Hostinger here.
Connecting a Domain and Installing WordPress
Next up is connecting your domain and installing your CMS of choice. Hostinger provides all necessary tutorials, and support can help with any issue that arises. You can find a detailed description of my domain and WordPress adventures with Hostinger here.
Access Webmail from Anywhere in the World
Hostinger also provides email hosting, giving you the benefits of a personalized email address. You can easily create additional addresses using hPanel, and the Premium and Business plans will net you unlimited addresses.
Other features include autoresponders, email forwarding and automatic rerouting. The best part is, of course, the webmail access, which is available on all plans. It’s good to know that I’ll still be able to check my mail after getting that one-way ticket to Aruba.
And One More Thing about hPanel
I talked about hPanel before, but its ease of use deserves a special mention. Hostinger integrated each of its services into the panel, and as a result made it into a one-stop shop for all your management needs.
I’ve had experiences with web hosts where the domain management was separated and required a separate login. With others the navigation was unintuitive (or nonsensical), the billing information was impossible to find, and the live chat just wasn’t available in the control panel itself.
With hPanel there’s no need to waste time guessing or looking around. Everything is easily accessible from the same page.
Great Uptime, Great Speeds
We’ve reached performance! This is my favorite part of writing reviews, because it’s where we find out if the provider is actually good, or just good at writing copy. No special feature or slick user interface can change the two most critical factors: uptime and loading speed.
Uptime is measured in percentage, with a 100% rating meaning the site was always accessible. Because websites run on complex servers and nothing is foolproof, most hosts aim for 99% uptime. Good hosts aim for more. Great hosts guarantee it.
Introducing Hostinger’s 99.9% uptime guarantee. The company’s SLA states that if they fail to provide a user with a 99.9% uptime, that user can get back 5% of their monthly fee.
I’m also happy to report that tracking of websites hosted on the American and European data centers consistently shows an actual uptime of 99.9%+.
On to loading speed. I’m sure you’ve run into a website that took some time to load. And I know what happened. You pressed the back button and found another site to visit.
My website was hosted in Hostinger’s Singapore data center, and my loading time from Singapore clocked at a total of 0.013s. These fantastic loading times guarantee that your visitors will be able to load your site immediately.
Hostinger operates data centers on four different continents, so you can choose the one that’s close to your target audience. You’ll be treated to phenomenal speeds, with even the global loading times being well within reason.
Fantastic Support, at Your Service 24/7
Hostinger offers some of the best support in the business. Support agents are available 24/7 through live chat, and after many interactions with them, I’m happy to report they are speedy, efficient, and professional.
Some of you may be reverse engineering the situation in your head right now, thinking, “If this guy had so many interactions with support, what does that say about the quality of the hosting itself?”
Full disclosure – everything worked out of the box. I started by asking questions just to test how well they could answer them, and continued because, well, I liked talking with them.
When contacting the average web host, I usually expect a few things. First of all, there’s a five minute search for the contact information, probably an email address. Then there’s the 60 minute waiting period (if I’m lucky) before they answer. After that, it’s usually been so long I just don’t care.
Hostinger does things differently. Instead of confusing support channels with long waiting times and outsourced agents, the company provides state-of-the-art live chat support, coupled with an industry-leading knowledge base.
I wanted to ask about connecting my hosting and domain name, and Viktorija was with me in less than a minute. Even though the knowledge base includes all relevant tutorials, she kindly explained everything I needed to know and made sure I implemented it successfully.
I decided to ask for the impossible – support in Hebrew, my native tongue. Viktorija wasn’t a fluent Hebrew speaker (imagine my surprise), but offered to translate what I wrote in Hebrew, saying she commonly does it for others. She even sent a puppy at the end, and puppies make everything better.
None of this should be taken lightly. This is Hostinger knocking down the language barrier, making it so that anybody, anywhere, can get support. I checked around the clock and they were always there, 24/7. Edvinas even helped me with getting my SSL lock pad going:
My one gripe here is that Hostinger lacks phone support. The live chat works great, but it can’t match the more personal nature of a phone call. Those of you looking to have a real conversation with a representative speaking your own language might find the chat limiting.
For those of you who are okay with live chat, this is as good as it gets. 24/7 live support, immediate response times, professional agents, puppies, and the most detailed knowledge base in the industry.
Reasonably Priced Service
Overall, Hostinger offers fantastic value for money. The situation is a bit different for each hosting type, so let’s start by breaking it down.
The company offers shared and cloud hosting, each with three price levels, in addition to advanced VPS solutions in varying prices. VPS is going to be your best friend once you’ve really hit the big time, but shared hosting will be enough for us simpler folk just running a blog or a small business site.
Compared to other web hosts, the shared hosting plans aren’t just affordable, they’re practically a steal. Hostinger often gives out limited time offers and special deals, and when that happens, the monthly cost becomes pocket change.
If you’re in the market for domain names, sign up for Premium or Business for a year or longer and Hostinger will throw one in for free.
Having some experience with subscription trickery, I checked Hostinger’s renewal policy, and found it to be very fair. Renewal rates are more expensive than the introductory ones, but still affordable. There are no hidden renewal fees, and you can always upgrade mid-subscription and get your remaining balance credited towards the new plan.
These really are great deals, but there are a few important things to consider. Features like SSL certificates are only included in the Business plan. It’s a one-time purchase, and not a very expensive one, but it should still be taken into account.
Another thing is that to actually get the best deals, you have to sign up for the longest subscription period. Subscription periods are for 1 month, 12 months, 24 months, or 48 months. Monthly hosting is affordable, but the low price advertised is for the 48 months subscription.
The prices for cloud hosting and VPS are different ball game altogether. They’re good, but much more in line with what the competition offers.
All payments are secured. You can choose to pay with Visa, MasterCard, American Express, Discover, Paypal, BitDegree, or various cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoin, Litecoin, and Ethereum.
30-Day Money-Back Guarantee
You know what’s really easy? Not committing. Trying something just to see if you like it. Hostinger understands that, and provides a generous 30-day money-back guarantee.
That means you can sign up, try out the service, get your site live, take it for a drive, check performance, see if it converts, and if you’re not happy within 30 days, just let Hostinger know and you can get your money back. Easy.
Click here to read more about my experience canceling my Hostinger account.
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Affordable and easy to use
I am using their business shared hosting and the quality for the price that they offer is sick! The resources that they offer is enough not to mention that they have great custom panel which is easy to navigate, it takes time to get used to it if you used cpanel, but it does not take long.
Glad to use Hostinger
They have one of the best chat systems that I really like and can't agree more that their services are easy to use. I wasn't so happy when I found out that they don't have cPanel but with everything what's happening here right now, I can't be happier about it haha. Glad to use them.
Fast and reliable
As a man in business I need everything to work well and fast. I have used several different hosting providers searching for the one that meets all of my requirements and all I needed was good speed. I tried hostinger and I am satisfied with it. Fast and reliable.
Polite support agents
I wasn't used to businesses having a live chat. It seemed odd to write my problems directly to some person instead of writing an email. But I tried. I loved it. I'm never changing it back to those old-school emails. Ovation to Hostinger for having this feature and for the remarkably polite agents.
Caught a promotion woohoo
After reading this review I went down to check Hostinger and was pleasantly surprised when I found out about the SSL promotion they have for all the plans, so got it totally for free. Already set it up and my website is working there for a week now, very proud of myself that I managed to migrate it. All is good and that's why I give them 5 stars out of 5.
down down and down - uptime is terriable
fast if up down about 3 percent of the time and if you contact them they lie about it being down. then you complain they say get clod server. At writing this even their server is offline. The host's selling site. I wish I had not moved my site. It was the worst mistake I ever made.