10 Best Free Email Providers Online

Email is pretty much the lifeline of our digital existence. Whether it’s for work, exchanging ideas with your colleagues, or even accessing online services such as social media platforms like Facebook, an Email has gone from a simple messaging system to a digital identity of sorts. As such, there are a lot of choices for you to create your Email, and each one of these Email services offer a bunch of advanced features, and a lot more. So, if you’re wondering which service will be the best for you, here are the 10 best free Email providers online that you can check out.

Best Free Email Providers

The kind of features someone may be looking for in an email client can differ from person to person; after all, it’s a very subjective topic. Do remember that this list is ordered as per my own thoughts about these email services, and your opinions may differ.

You can use the table of contents below to jump ahead to any one of the free email providers that you want to learn all about.

1. Gmail

Gmail is the de-facto standard when it comes to email these days. Almost everyone has a Gmail account. In fact, the service has over 1.8 billion users worldwide. One of the primary reasons behind Gmail’s popularity could also be the fact that it’s tied into every Google service including Google Drive, YouTube, Google Photos, and everything else — each of which is an equally popular offering from Google.

As a webmail service, there are a lot of useful Gmail features, both in terms of quality, and security. Users get up to 15GB of free cloud storage (shared across Google services), and access to all of Google’s services.

Gmail lets users organize their email inboxes in a lot of ways. You get categories such as Primary, Social, and Promotions. Plus, you can use Labels and folders to organize your incoming email into folders and labels automatically.

The service also offers a pretty solid search system (after all, search is Google’s forte) and you can use a bunch of identifiers and fine-tune searches to create filters, or just find that one email from 6 years ago.

Apart from that, there are plenty of Gmail add-ons that you can get to further extend functionality of your email service, including things like email tracking. Gmail also frequently brings new features natively. Recently, Gmail started allowing users to undo-send. The service has also added features such as Snoozing emails, scheduling emails, integration with Google Meet, and more. There are a lot of neat Gmail tricks that can make things much easier for you.

As for security, Gmail offers two-step verification for logging in, which means you can use a phone number (or an authenticator application) to get 2FA codes when you log in. You can even use your iPhone as a 2FA key for Gmail. This is a good security measure against hackers and bad actors.

The main disadvantage of Gmail is the simple fact that it’s owned and operated by Google, which means you’re giving even more control of your data to the Search giant. While the company has privacy policies and more to protect your data, it’s no secret that most people aren’t very comfortable with Google’s data collection. There’s also the fact that file attachments are limited to 25MB which can be a little too small for some users. However, Gmail brings an awesome integration with Google Drive, so larger files can automatically be shared via Drive links if needed. Overall, Gmail is definitely my pick for the best free email providers online.

Key Features: Categorized Inbox, Filters for Email, Personalization, 2FA, Integration with Google Meet, Third-party Addons.

Platforms: Web-based, Android, iOS

Custom Business Email: starts at $6 per user per month (Compare plans)

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2. Outlook

Microsoft’s Email service is another hugely popular email service. What started off as Hotmail (which was honestly a little cringe-worthy) has since been renamed to Outlook and has become considerably modern with a lot of useful features for individual users as well as enterprises. Popular as it is, it’s still nowhere near Gmail’s popularity; Outlook has a reported 400 million users (compared to 1.8 billion for Gmail).

However, that difference in userbase isn’t due to feature disparity. Outlook offers quite a lot of useful features to its users, and it’s a solid Gmail alternative. Just as it is with Gmail and Google’s services, Outlook offers better integration with Microsoft services including Microsoft Teams, Calendar, as well as Microsoft Office tools including Word, Excel, and others. You can even start new Teams meetings straight from the Inbox. Plus, you can now set Outlook as the default email app on iPhone thanks to iOS 14.

Outlook also offers a categorized inbox with ‘Focused’ and ‘Other’ sections baked in to automatically organize incoming emails as per their importance. You can disable this organization if you don’t like it as well. Outlook also offers a bunch of customization options, including support for themes, as well as the ability to change the style of your inbox with things like message heights, message organization and more.

Outlook supports filters as well, though they are called ‘Rules’ and creating these Rules isn’t as intuitive as with Gmail. You will have to go into Outlook settings and then create the Rules you want to apply to your inbox in order to properly organize your email just the way you want to. Moreover, there are a bunch of Outlook add-ins as well to further improve your experience with the email service.

Apart from that, Outlook offers 5GB of cloud storage space, and limits attachments to 25MB, same as Gmail. However, Outlook’s user interface is definitely better than most other Email services I have seen and used. The only major disadvantage with Outlook is the really restrictive 5GB cloud space. Although I also don’t like the fact that Outlook’s inbox has ads on the side-pane unless you start paying for Outlook premium. If these cons are a big no-no for you, the rest of this list contains some useful Outlook alternatives as well.

Key Features: Focused Inbox, Integration with Teams, Clean UI, Customizability

Platforms: Web-based, Android, iOS, Windows, macOS (Premium only)

Custom Business Email: starts at $5 per user per month (Compare plans)

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3. Proton Mail

Encrypted services are becoming more and more important by the day, so it’s really no surprise if you’re looking for an encrypted email service. Fortunately, there are quite a bit of these out there and Proton Mail is one of the best ones you can use.

This free email provider offers a simple inbox, with a clean and minimal looking UI. But more importantly, it offers a bunch of privacy and security features that can put other, more popular webmail or email services to shame.

All emails in Proton Mail are end to end encrypted, which means no one, other than you and the recipient can read your emails even if they were able to get their hands on them. This also means that the company itself can’t read or access your email, so they can’t be shared with third parties either, which is a great win for privacy. What’s more, creating an account on Proton Mail is really simple and you don’t need to enter any personal information to create your account. Plus, Proton Mail doesn’t store any IP logs that can be linked to your account, so you can rest assured that your activity is completely anonymous.

All data stored by Proton Mail is stored in fully encrypted servers that are distributed across several biometric-secured data centers. Plus, Proton Mail is based out of Switzerland, so your data is naturally protected under strict Swiss privacy laws.

For anyone who prefers using Tor for accessing the internet, Proton Mail has an official Onion page as well that you can access here. Proton Mail has a rock solid legacy as well. It was founded by scientists who first met at CERN, and wanted to create a secure and private internet.

The one major drawback with ProtonMail is the fact that the basic, free service only offers 500MB storage, which can be a tad too restrictive for most people. You can upgrade to a paid tier to get more storage as well. Or you can check out some best cloud storage services if you’re willing to keep your data elsewhere.

Key Features: end to end encryption, no IP logs and personal information, Tor support

Platforms: Web-based, Android, iOS

Custom Business Email:  €8 per user per month (Compare plans)

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4. Tutanota

If ProtonMail’s 500MB limit on free accounts isn’t something you’re willing to put up with, you can also check out Tutanota. This is yet another free encrypted email service that’s built from the ground up with privacy and encryption in mind. Based out of Germany, Tutanota offers a bunch of useful features that anyone looking for encrypted email services will appreciate.

As you’d expect from an encrypted email service, all emails you send from Tutanota are end to end encrypted. That means no one else can read your emails, apart from you and the recipient of the email. You also get a bunch of integrations that you can make use of to get more done straight from your inbox.

Tutanota brings a Calendar as well as Contacts built-in on your inbox, so you can easily see and schedule your meetings and plan out your day without having to leave Tutanota. The service includes no ads anywhere, and it even encrypts your calendars and contacts, so you can rest assured that all your data belongs only to you.

Similar to ProtonMail, Tutanota doesn’t ask for any personal information when you’re signing up for a new account, and thanks to its German origin, it is protected by strict privacy laws as well.

With a free account on Tutanota, you get 1GB of storage, which is not a lot, but it’s more than what ProtonMail offers. You will also get one calendar, and a single user support. However, you can upgrade to paid plans to get more storage, add more users, and get support for unlimited searches and multiple calendars. You can also buy additional storage separately in case you don’t want any of the other features that come with a premium Tutanota account. For people who want an encrypted email, Tutanota is one of the best free email providers offering the service.

Key Features: end to end encryption, encrypted calendar and contacts support, a-la-carte choices for increasing storage, email aliases and more.

Platforms: Web-based, Android, iOS, Linux, Windows, macOS

Custom Business Email: starts at €24 per month (Compare plans)

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5. iCloud Mail

Apple’s free email service, iCloud Mail is also a solid choice for anyone looking for an email service they can use. It’s most preferred by Apple users, partly because almost every Apple user has an iCloud account anyway, and iCloud Mail comes bundled with it. Moreover, you get a nicely integrated webmail service and email client with the Apple Mail app.

iCloud Mail offers 5GB of free storage, which is shared with other Apple products and services in iCloud Drive. You can further expand this storage by paying for storage subscription plans. As for attachments, iCloud allows attachments up to 20MB per email. However, if you’re trying to send a larger file, it does allow you to use iCloud Drive to share the file through a link, similar to how Gmail allows the use of Google Drive to share attachments over 25MB.

Earlier, iCloud didn’t have support for Folders to categorize emails. However, you can now create new Folders for your email, and you can even set custom Rules to automatically organize incoming emails into folders as per your preference. The service doesn’t support adding other email addresses into the same inbox though, so if that’s something you’re looking for, iCloud Mail might not be the best fit for you.

Emails in iCloud Mail are synced to all your Apple devices automatically, and you can access them via the built-in Mail app on Mac, iPhone, and iPad, as long as you’re signed in with your iCloud account on those devices.

Key Features: Email sync across Apple devices, ad-free, clean UI, Rules and categorization of emails

Platforms: Web-based, macOS, Windows, iOS

Custom Business Email: not supported

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6. Yahoo

Yahoo may have been sold off to Verizon, but Yahoo Mail continues to live on with over 225 million active users as of October 2020. It’s nowhere near the top-dogs such as Gmail and Outlook, but it’s still a one of the more popular free email providers and for good reason.

For starters, Yahoo Mail offers 1TB of free storage to all its users, which is well above anything offered by any other service on this list. Moreover, you can send attachments up to 100MB with Yahoo Mail.

Yahoo Mail brings spam protection — pretty much a standard feature in most email services — and virus protection. Plus, it has a nice, clean UI that makes for easy navigation and multi-tasking with its support for tab-based browsing. Although the presence of ads is quite annoying.

Similar to services like Gmail, and Outlook, Yahoo Mail also lets you organize your emails into folders. You can search through all your emails, and the built-in search also lets you search the web if you need to.

The main disadvantages with Yahoo Mail are the short inactivity allowances — your account will get suspended if you’re inactive for 6 months. Plus, even though Yahoo Mail does bring a bit of customization to its inbox, it’s not as intuitive to use as something like Gmail or Outlook.

Key Features: 1TB storage, 100MB attachments, tab-based browsing support

Platforms: Web-based, Android, iOS

Custom Business Email: starts at $3.19 per mailbox per month (Compare plans)

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7. Zoho Mail

Zoho is a CRM solution offering a comprehensive set of Office Suite tools for businesses and professional users. One of their offerings, Zoho Mail, is a free email service and a solid option for anyone looking to get a new email address for their personal use or even for a business. You can set up your email on Zoho Mail with your own custom domain if you have one, or you can use a free @zoho email address. Free users get 5GB storage for their emails as well as 1GB of document storage included in the plan. You can also send attachments up to 25MB per email.

Zoho ensures security for your emails by fully encrypting all your data. The company also claims that it never sells your data to advertising companies. What’s more, Zoho Mail offers two factor authentication, EAR, S/MIME, and TLS for additional security. If you already have an email account you can easily migrate it to Zoho Mail with support for IMAP/POP and Outlook Exchange.

Feature-wise, you get access to Zoho Calendar, contacts, tasks, and notes straight from your Inbox. Plus, it comes with collaborative tools so you can assign tasks, create events, and share notes with your teammates. Zoho Mail also offers email categorization, labeling, spam filter, and marking emails as important.

Key Features: no ads, professional features for businesses, easy access to notes, calendars, contacts, and more, collaborative features

Platforms: Web-based, Android, iOS

Custom Business Email: Starts from $0 (Compare plans)

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8. Mail

Another one of the best free email providers that you can consider using, Mail is a webmail service that offers unlimited email storage to its users. You also get 2GB file storage for free, as well as support for 50MB attachments per email. You can also create up to 10 email aliases with over 200 domains to choose from including @engineer.com, @usa.com and more. If you also use other email service providers, you can connect those email accounts to your Mail.com inbox and access all your emails in one place.

Mail also offers a handy little tool called Organizer. This allows users to manage their calendars and events easily. You can even export this data as a CSV file. Organizer lets you create reminders and alarms as well, and you can even share them with co-workers, family, and friends. Plus, it supports syncing with other major online calendar services so your events and calendar entries can be updated across all the services you use.

A Mail email account also brings with it access to contacts, which can be synchronized with mobile apps. You also get access to a suite of Office apps including online editors for documents, spreadsheets, and presentations.

The ‘Mail’ email service also brings privacy and security features, including spam filters, integrated virus protection, two factor authentication, etc.

Key Features: Manage all email accounts in one place, integrated office suite

Platforms: Web-based, Android, iOS

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9. AOL

Ask anyone older than most millennials, and they will likely have fond memories of using AOL. It’s a great free email provider that may have lost its old-school charm but is still available and has all the most useful features you may need.

AOL offers unlimited email storage for users, and a file attachment limit of 25MB. AOL’s service also supports IMAP, POP3, and SMTP so you can connect your other email services to your AOL inbox and receive all your emails in one place.

For security, AOL offers spam filtering, and antivirus security for your emails. What’s more you get a bunch of categorization and personalization features built-in as well. Some of the key features in AOL include text messaging to mobile phones, folders for email categorization, spam filters, events, tasks, personalization, etc. 

Key Features: support for sending text to mobile phones, folders, spam filtering

Platforms:  Web-based, Android, iOS

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10. Yandex

Lastly, there’s Yandex Mail that’s also one of the best free email providers. With Yandex, you get a smart email inbox which does a decent job of sorting out emails for you. Basically, without even setting any rules manually, Yandex will automatically sort your emails so that you can easily find emails from real people, while promotional mails and any other emails will go into separate folders for you to peruse later.

Yandex gives each user 10GB free cloud storage, and you can use this to store everything from attachments to your photos and other documents. Other key features in Yandex Mail include timers for emails which allows you to schedule emails, built in antivirus, a customizable interface, and more. A Yandex account also grants you access to all the rest of Yandex services. Plus, with apps for both Android and iOS devices, you can keep a track of your email on the go.

Key Features: Spam filter, smart inbox sorting, access to Yandex services

Platforms: Web-based, Android, iOS

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Use These Free Email Providers Online for Your Webmail Needs

These are the 10 best free email providers online according to me. As I mentioned at the beginning of this article, the choices for your email provider can be very subjective and hopefully you were able to find some email provider that fits your needs. We have included the most popular email providers here as well as some encrypted email services, so you can choose whichever suits best for you. Also, while most email providers on this list have their own apps, if you want something different, you can check out our list of email apps for Android and the best iPhone email apps. Let us know which email service you use in the comments below.

Comments 8
  • Since Mail.com started a pay service (29.99 a month) they absolutely will not allow free users to attach any files whatsoever. Try to attach 1 page of anything…and suddenly it will say you now owe $29.99. In other words–you’ll have to switch to their ridiculously overpriced pay service. For a single attachment.

  • I began to get harassed for 3 years by online tech websites and hackers, they have been driving me nuts, stealing all my files, insulting ridiculing me even alternating my borwser searches, posting images of woment that look like me just to humiliate with insulting comments over some MATRIX bullshit I detest the film director and the actors in that movie.

  • Thanks for the great suggestions. I have just never been able to love gmail after using Outlook (desktop) for many years at my former job. I don’t care for the look, the clutter, etc. I just haven’t taken the time to look for something else – especially where I can see all my accounts.

    I had forgotten that I signed up for a Mail.com account several years back. I’m happy that I saw your article and remembered. The company was pretty new so my real name (which is fairly common) was available which I like. I wasn’t aware of the option to use aliases. Perhaps that is a newer feature. I wear a few hats professional (writer, activist, life coach, and jewelry designer…dreaming up my next project). I liked Mail.com, just happened to start using a domain email and the provider’s service.

    I also want to check out Zoho. I’ve been hearing good things. Perhaps, Outlook online…Great options. Zoho seems to be really hitting the Android market lately with some interesting apps.

    Last…I hate to see rude comments. I am a writer myself and didn’t notice any errors. Maybe this post was edited. However, I was enjoying the article, not reading it critically looking for errors. I make many typos and errors and need to have my writing proofed. My mom used to be a copy editor and is always willing to help which is great! If I’m in a pinch, I will have my device read it to me and I always miss typos. I’m writing in my native language as well so I don’t have a good explanation 🙂

    Either way, great article and people who just post nasty comments need to get a life!

    • Couldn’t agree more Amanda. I just made my mail.com account. The only way a gmail account would have been accessible is if I had some crazy distorted name. Ditto on the rude comments…. unnecessary. Great article and helpful.

  • To mikeand beeboomvisitor. Learn a foreign language yourself and write in it and then we will see.

  • AOL and Yahoo now require new account holders to have cellular phone services. Gmail is a cluttered service,
    overburdened with confusing and unnecessary features. Mail.com and GMX appear to be under the same corporate umbrella. Both seem to have annoying technical faults, and unresponsive customer service.
    Outlook support is a database only. No live or email interactions. Not a bad service, as long as there are no technical issues. Yandex has an attractive format, but one wonders if the FSB and the GRU are reading one’s mail. Bottom line: The world of free email service, is mediocre at best.

  • I totally agree with Beebom Visitor that you need to proofread/copy-edit your writing by someone who knows English well. Apparently, you don’t know how annoyingly obvious your numerous errors are and how easily they could be corrected. It’s just common sense.

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