6 Top Free and Paid Options


The only thing I miss about being a student is student discounts. These days, it seems like there is a student discount on everything from salads to Spotify. Fortunately, web hosting is no different. If you’re planning to launch the next WordPress or Snapchat, then this list of web hosting for students is the perfect place to start.

This is because selected hosts who offer competitive prices, expansive feature sets, tools, and language options, so budding developers, designers, and marketers have room to grow.

Not only that, but you’ll have the freedom to build websites, applications, and experience in your field. In addition to saving money, you will also be enhancing the skills needed to land lucrative jobs.

Let’s see who gets the best grade.

We’d recommend all students stop by GitHub and sign up for the student’s pack. It comes with great offers for students, including domain names, courses, and free premium WordPress themes like our own Neve.

The best 100% free web hosting for students

000webhost

000webhosting offers free web hosting

There a few things better in life than free hosting. 000webhost is one of the most popular free web hosting options you can find. Hostinger, who impressed in our review, are behind the project bringing security and confidence. In addition, 000webhost offers you the ability to run a fully-functioning website where you can practice your skills.

Recommended plan: Free Web Hosting, which is free forever. You can upgrade to Single Shared Hosting for $0.79/mo.

What do you get:

  • 1 website
  • 300 MB disk space
  • 3 GB bandwidth
  • Cloudflare protection
  • A single FTP account
  • One MySQL database
  • 1 Cronjob
  • cURL and libcurl support

While the features might seem light, it is essential to remember that this is a free host, albeit one who hopes to tempt you into upgrading at some point. However, on the other hand, you are not getting ads plastered on your live site, which is the most common trade-off with free hosting.

You can also use WordPress or the supplied website builder to build your site. Indeed, you can do more with WordPress on 000webhost than you can with a free WordPress.com plan. For example, all of the 000webhost plans come with the latest versions of cPanel and PHP. Finally, you can add all the CSS you desire.

On the other hand, 000webhost can suspend your site and permanently delete your data if you go over the limits, so you might want to use it solely as your “web hosting for students projects” option. If you need a hosting setup that can handle your next disruptive idea, then read on.

Curious about 000webhost? Then check out our full review.

The best cheap web hosting for students

Namecheap

Namecheap homepage

While Namecheap started as a domain registrar, it has developed into a reliable, low-cost hosting provider. Indeed, they recently received an 8.17 from their users in our annual hosting survey. Some of the critical points in Namecheap’s favor are the monthly payment option and a free domain for the first year.

Recommended plan: Stellar Shared Hosting, which costs $1.44/mo for the first year. It will renew at $2.88/mo in the second year. You can also pay monthly for $2.88/mo.

What do you get:

  • Three websites
  • 20 GB disk space
  • Unmetered bandwidth
  • Free domain
  • Free SSL certificate
  • GitHub integration
  • 50 FTP accounts
  • 50 MySQL databases
  • cURL and cURL SSL installed on all shared servers
  • Supports multiple languages including PHP, Perl, Python, and Ruby
  • WP-CLI pre-installed
  • US data center

Like many hosts, Namecheap offers the 1-click installer Softaculous via the cPanel. As a result, you can easily install popular content management systems like WordPress or forums like MyBB with the click of a button.

Namecheap also has a range of free and paid tools to build a website, including a CDN, an uptime monitor, and even a paid legal advice tool. While they offer a website builder, it doesn’t compare to the current crop of WordPress page builders available.

Notably, for a shared hosting package, Namecheap offers jailed root access on shared servers, which you set up via the cPanel. However, you will only be able to use basic commands within your directory.

Finally, Namecheap offers you the ability to create applications with Node.js, Python, Perl, and Ruby. Thus you could use your shared hosting to host web applications at an affordable rate.

Not convinced? See who else we recommend for cheap web hosting.

The best web hosting with a student discount

InMotion Hosting

The details for InMotion's student discounted hosting

While InMotion Hosting is a long-standing American host, it is most well-known for its WordPress hosting options. However, they also provide powerful shared hosting options that regularly outpace more well-known hosts. What’s more, they also offer student discounted pricing for their robust business hosting.

Recommended plan: The shared Power plan costs $4.16/mo for 12 months or $4.99/mo for six months. There is no increased renewal price while you remain a student.

What do you get:

  • Supports up to fifty websites
  • 100 GB SSD storage
  • Unlimited bandwidth
  • Free SSL
  • Automatic backups
  • SSH access and support for WP-CLI
  • Your choice of US data centers
  • cURL and cURL SSL installed on all shared servers
  • Supports multiple languages including PHP, Perl, Python, Ruby, and JavaScript
  • Softaculous one-click installer for 400 applications

Overall, InMotion Hosting offers an enticing range of features and storage for building websites and web applications. Furthermore, like Namecheap, InMotion Hosting offers Pearl, Python, and Ruby. However, they also provide Ruby on Rails in their student deal, which, when combined with SSH and WP-CLI, gives you the most options of any shared hosting package.

If you’re looking to build websites, then InMotion Hosting offers BoldGrid for site building with WordPress. Furthermore, you can opt to have WordPress, PrestaShop, or Joomla pre-installed.

Need more information? Read our full review of InMotion Hosting.

The best VPS hosting for students

A2 Hosting

A2 Hosting have low prices for unmanaged VPS hosting

A2 Hosting is another host that flies under the radar when people talk about hosting. However, if you’re looking for a flexible host with reasonable prices, then their virtual private server (VPS) options deliver performance with unprecedented control over your server’s configuration.

Recommended plan: The Dynamic VPS plan’s starting price is $5.00/mo for 12 months. There is no increased renewal price.

What do you get:

  • 20 GB SSD storage
  • One core
  • 2 TB bandwidth
  • 512 MB RAM
  • Linux servers
  • Choose the server location from two US, a European or an Asian location.
  • Root access
  • Anytime money-back guarantee
  • Server configuration controls for OS, core, RAM changes
  • Multiple OS options: Cent, Ubuntu, Debian, Fedora, Slackware

A2 Hosting offers an excellent package for anyone with the knowledge to build their server. As a result, this is a package suited to students with admin knowledge or a lot of courage. The server is entirely unmanaged, and you won’t have cPanel to get you through a crisis (though they offer Webuzo for installation of Softaculus scripts).

To put a positive spin on it, you have complete control over your server, which includes configuration. You can add cores, bandwidth, storage, whenever you like. For example, an extra core will add $1 to your monthly plan.

If you’re a developer, you can do anything with an A2 Hosting plan, including rebooting, shutdown control, and even changing OS on demand.

However, if you’d like to see how they compare, then see our review of cheap VPS options.

The best cloud web hosting for students

Google Cloud

Google Cloud Platform offers special web hosting for students with discounts, credits, and tools

When it comes to cloud hosting for students, there are only three options: Microsoft Azure, Amazon AWS, or Google Cloud. Fortunately, they all offer dedicated student packages so you can take them for a test flight.

We recommend Google Cloud specifically because it has an excellent tool-set with a smoother learning curve. We also took the always free-tier into account, and Google Cloud currently has the most generous limits of the three big cloud providers.

Recommended plan: The Student Plan is free. Furthermore, you get $50 US in credits to use with any Google Cloud product. The credits renew every twelve months. You can also get free courses on Coursera, 200 Qwiklabs credits, and discounts on Google certifications.

A small sample of what you get in the always free tier:

  • Google App Engine: 5 GB storage and 28 front-end instances hours per day.
  • Practice with datasets and BigQuery with 1 TB of querying and 10 GB of storage per month
  • Practice building cloud software with 120 daily Cloud Build minutes
  • You can connect services with Cloud Functions’ two million free invocations each month and 5 GB of outbound network data
  • Google Cloud Source Repositories for up to five users with 50 GB storage and outbound data
  • 5 GB of Cloud Storage and 5,000 Class A and 50,000 Class B operations
  • Google Compute Engine offers one f1-micro VM for free using a US location

As mentioned, this is a small sample of Google Cloud’s always free tier. You will have limited access to career-boosting tools like Google’s Machine Learning, Speech to Text, Kubernetes Engine, and AI. However, it’s easy to run over the limits quite quickly. Fortunately, Google has a cloud services calculator to help you make the most of your credits.

Read a comparison of cloud services here.

The best option for students launching web applications

Heroku

Heroku offers web hosting for students who are interested in building and deploying web applications

Heroku is an excellent option for anyone who is looking to build and host web applications. In the first place, they offer a standard free option for anyone looking to start hosting a web application. And equally important, they have an offer in the GitHub student pack.

Recommended plan: The Hobby Plan is free for two years when you sign up with GitHub. It renews at $84/yr after the two years is up or reverts to the free plan.

Here’s what you get:

  • 550-1000 Dyno hours a month
  • Support for both Git and Docker deployments
  • Support for Node.js, Clojure, Scala, Ruby, PHP, Python, Go, and Java
  • Managed server environment
  • Custom domains
  • The free plan sleeps after 30 minutes of inactivity to preserve hours
  • Free SSL in the hobby plan
  • An extensive library of add-ons, buttons, and build packs

Not only does Heroku offer a great feature set, but they also provide a managed server environment. Furthermore, Heroku runs all of the apps in ‘Dynos,’ which are Linux containers providing all of the compute resources, memory resources, an OS, and alongside the temporary filesystem needed to run your application.

For these reasons, Heroku is a popular option for beginners. Beginners can also get a helping hand from over 200 add-ons for AWS file storage, data visualization, database response times, and much more. In like manner, the buttons and buildpacks are extensive enough to help you connect to third-party services while also keeping your build processes efficient.

Which is the best web hosting for students?

When it comes to the best web hosting for students, your choice will ultimately depend on what you want to achieve.

  • If you want to experiment with different projects, then the free host 000webhost is a good starting point.
  • If you want to spin up a simple site with few resource requirements, then go with Namecheap.
  • InMotion is the best choice for building larger sites with different server-side languages.
  • For full server control, then go with A2 Hosting or Google Cloud Platform.
  • For experimenting with web applications, then Heroku is your best friend.

Any of the hosts will give you an excellent opportunity to experiment with building, maintaining, and deploying projects, which could be the difference between landing a job or crashing with a thud.

Do you have any suggestions for finding great student web hosting? Let’s talk about them in the comments section below!

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