Looking for a fast and hassle-free server for hosting your WordPress blog for India and South-East Asia audiences?
VapourHost Ultra is exactly what you need.
As the name suggests, ‘Ultra‘ is a premium addition to the VapourHost Web Hosting that aims to deliver an elegant experience for hosting websites that run on WordPress. It is aimed at medium to large or even ultra-sized blogs and businesses that bring the best possible WordPress experience to the user.
I got an early invite to try out their latest offering, the VapourHost Ultra, on the first week of May 2021. I happily agreed. VapourHost team had migrated HiTricks to Ultra servers on 4th May 2021, and at the time of writing this review on 17th June 2021, it has been over 6 weeks that I had hosted this blog over there.
So, just in case you were in search of an example website hosted on VapourHost Ultra, this is it. Feel free to navigate around, browse a few pages, and test us out with the speedtest tools. You will get the idea of how fast their servers are.
In today’s VapourHost Ultra Web Hosting review I will be talking about all the new things that VapourHost Ultra offers, and how it differs from the VapourHost shared hosting plans, and tell you about my experience till now. Keep reading to find out. Here’s an overview:
(Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links.)
VapourHost Ultra Features:
If I have to describe VapourHost Ultra in one line, it is a WordPress-focused premium web hosting solution. While the regular VapourHost Shared Hosting provides a platform for small to medium-sized blogs, VapourHost Ultra is customized for traffic-thirsty WordPress blogs. It is built on scalable cloud technology.
But that does not mean that beginners cannot go for the Ultra tier. VapourHost Ultra is built for anyone who loves to experience the best WordPress has to offer.
So what is the difference between the regular VapourHost shared hosting and VapourHost Ultra?
As the name suggests, in shared hosting, you share your server with other websites and a definite server resource is allocated to everyone for fair use. Even if some web hosting provides unlimited (or better to say, unmetered) web hosting, you will find that if you get a huge traffic in-flow, it will slow down your website, as it starts to come close to your allocated resource threshold.
A typical shared hosting has two negatives:
- The server won’t handle very high traffic in its best way. You might experience intermittent downtimes.
- The server response time will be higher. You will have room for improvements with regards to its speed.
Vapourhost Ultra aims to solve these two problems while bringing in the best possible WordPress experience.
Imagine a huge cloud server, with sufficient available resources. Every VapourHost Ultra user accounts are hosted in their own isolated environment, so none of the data and resources available in one account can affect the other account in any way. In other words, sufficient resources are provided for each account, and it is able to handle any amount of traffic very easily, including occasional traffic spikes.
Where is VapourHost Ultra Server Located?
VapourHost Ultra Servers are located in Singapore, as of now. This makes it a sweet spot for those who are running websites that have a target audience in India and south-east Asian countries like Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, and others. I am expecting them to get an India-specific server in the near future.
Will this impact in performance if you are targeting Indian audiences? We will have a look at it in the performance section.
What’s in store for VapourHost Ultra users?
- Litespeed Enterprise Server + cPanel: VapourHost Ultra provides you with a Litespeed Enterprise server along with cPanel for setting everything up. This also means you can utilize the Litespeed Cache (LS Cache) WordPress Plugin on your website in its full capabilities. You may configure Quic.cloud CDN too. PHP 8 is also supported along with PHP X-Ray. However, this blog is hosted on PHP 7.4 only. I did not test PHP 8 while writing this review.
- VapourCDN: With VapourHost Ultra, you will get exclusive access to VapourCDN, which is a customized CDN from VapourHost based on BunnyCDN. It is bundled with your plan at no additional cost to you. At the time of writing this review, this was in the beta stage, and I was only able to test it very briefly.
- Accelerated Support: VapourHost Ultra promises high-quality tech support with even lesser waiting time than their shared hosting support, which is already fast enough. That’s not all, the support includes queries regarding WordPress too, just in case you need any help around setting up your website, your email client, or any popular WordPress plugin which you cannot get into work.
- Best-in-Class Security: Both regular and ultra servers follow the same robust security protocols with WAF and malware scanners, and VapourHost doesn’t compromise on that. However, with ultra, you will get HTTP/3 enabled servers, which run on QUIC.
- Free Daily Backups: Both regular and ultra servers offer automatic daily backups for free. However, VapourHost Ultra retains your backups for a longer period of time (21 days) compared to VapourHost shared server (14 days), so that your website stays covered. I feel this is where VapourHost has room for improvement and the ultra backups could have been extended to 30 days or more.
While this sounds good on paper, is it really fast enough?
Check out the performance section below to get an idea. But before that, I will list the VapourHost Ultra pricing structure below.
VapourHost Ultra Pricing:
VapourHost is bringing 4 Ultra Plans on its plate. The plans are compared below:
|Ultra Plan 1||Ultra Plan 2||Ultra Plan 3||Ultra Plan 4|
|Host 01 WordPress Site||Host 03 WordPress Sites||Host 10 WordPress Sites||Host 30 WordPress Sites|
|5 GB SSD Space||15 GB SSD Space||50 GB SSD Space||150 GB SSD Space|
|200 GB Bandwidth||500 GB Bandwidth||1000 GB Bandwidth||3000 GB Bandwidth|
|Free Daily Backups||Free Daily Backups||Free Daily Backups||Free Daily Backups|
|Litespeed Enterprise||Litespeed Enterprise||Litespeed Enterprise||Litespeed Enterprise|
|cPanel Included||cPanel Included||cPanel Included||cPanel Included|
|HTTP/3 Enabled||HTTP/3 Enabled||HTTP/3 Enabled||HTTP/3 Enabled|
As you can see, the pricing starts from 10$ and goes all the way up to 150$ per month. If you are going for the annual plans you need to pay only for 10 months, and you will get 2 months free. This is a good thing and makes the annual plan quite lucrative. Go ahead and give them a spin. You are backed by a no-questions-asked 30-day money-back guarantee.
As of now, VapourHost Ultra is only supporting previously registered domains only. You can either purchase a domain elsewhere (check out our Domain Registration Deals Page) and start your blog afresh with VapourHost Ultra or if you have an existing blog hosted elsewhere, you can opt for free website migration.
How to Migrate your Blog to VapourHost Ultra?
In case you want to migrate your existing blog to VapourHost Ultra, you can open a support ticket from inside their web hosting panel, and give your previous hosting credentials. The support team will be migrating your website to VapourHost Ultra and let you know.
While I liked that they haven’t cluttered it with too many plans, I feel this can be a major issue for anyone trying to host more than 3 and less than 10 websites. The steep price rise from 20$ to 70$ per month is not much pocket-friendly for someone who needs to host 5 websites, for example. I will definitely hesitate to shell out 700$ a year for hosting 4 or 5 websites.
This is something that VapourHost should think about, in the long term. Otherwise, the starting plans are priced well compared to what it offers.
VapourHost Ultra Performance:
Before I dive into the performance section, I want to emphasize that specifically for WordPress, the major factors that will determine your website performance are:
- Web Hosting
- WordPress themes and plugins
- Cache and Image optimizations
- CDN and other SEO optimizations
Out of these, Web Hosting is one of the major pillars behind your page loading speeds, since your server response time, time to first byte (TTFB), etc, will depend on that. But other than that, how you are optimizing your websites, which WordPress theme are you using, how many heavy plugins have you installed, your cache and image optimization strategies, etc. will determine your final loading speeds.
Here are the details for HiTricks for your reference:
- HiTricks runs on VapourHost Ultra, which is a Singapore-based server.
- Our primary audience for HiTricks is from India, although we publish global content too, and receive traffic from all over the world.
- We are using Rehub WordPress Theme on our blog.
- We are using Litespeed Cache WordPress Plugin for controlling our cache and image optimization. (In fact, for every website running on Litespeed, I will definitely recommend you to use this free plugin. You won’t need any other paid cache plugins. It also takes care of image optimization as well, including support for next-gen image formats.)
- I don’t think the number of plugins will give any solid idea, but just stating it out: At the time of writing this review, I have 26 plugins installed on HiTricks. I won’t be naming them here.
- I generally do not use CDN, since my target audience is in India. Still, for the sake of performance testing, I have briefly tested the VapourCDN service and I will be laying down the speedtest results below.
VapourHost Ultra Speedtest Results with NO CDN:
Here’s the result from Webpagetest.org. I believe WebPageTest is currently the best tool available for speedtest checks, as it focuses on the Core Web Vitals. I did 3 runs on 18th June so that you get an idea of the current state of the blog, after regularly blogging for over 6 weeks on VapourHost Ultra servers.
All the tests were done from the Mumbai location, on the Chrome browser. Everything else was kept as default. The Links for all 3 runs are given below. Feel free to re-run the tests yourself, and modify different parameters as per your need.
- WebPageTest Run 1: 18th June 2021.
- WebPageTest Run 2: 18th June 2021.
- WebPageTest Run 3: 18th June 2021.
I also tested my website with other tools like Google Pagespeed Insights, Lighthouse, or Pingdom Tools, however, I am not attaching them here since they do not save the test results and are not accessible via links. You may always visit these tools and test it out yourself.
I don’t rely on GTMetrix mostly because they are highly inaccurate. The data fluctuates a lot between two subsequent tests. Also, they keep on modifying their scoring parameters regularly, so it won’t give a good idea. I recommend you to refer to WebPageTest and Pagespeed Insights (Lighthouse) for testing your website as well. It’s the gold standard and preferred by everyone.
VapourHost Ultra Speedtest Results with VapourCDN:
After turning on the VapourCDN service, I carried out the speedtest again 3 times keeping all other parameters unchanged. Here’s the results:
- WebPageTest Run 1: 18th June 2021.
- WebPageTest Run 2: 18th June 2021.
- WebPageTest Run 3: 18th June 2021.
With the VapourCDN service on, the first thing I noticed in the results was that the ‘Effective use of CDN’ box was checked in green, which validated the CDN service.
I compared the major changes with and without CDN side-by-side. I used the fastest results among the 3 for the comparison.
|Parameters||Without CDN||With CDN|
|First Contentful Paint||0.706s||1.025s|
|Largest Contentful Paint||0.907s||1.187s|
|Cumulative Layout Shift||0.0034s||0.0036s|
|Total Blocking Time||≥ 0.001s||≥ 0.025s|
|Fully Loaded Time||1.874s||2.254s|
As you can probably see from the results, since I am located in India, and serving my blog to Indian audiences, the page loading speeds without VapourCDN are slightly better. Although the difference is marginal, I could find similar results for all 3 tests. This brings the question of whether or not I should be using VapourCDN to serve content to Indian audiences at all?
I have kept my blog CDN-free for most of the time, and I probably would go back to it. If your primary audience is also from India, then you should thoroughly test out your blog with and without CDN before taking the final call.
VapourHost Ultra Server Load Test:
I conducted this test with the Loader.io tool’s free plan, and the results were pretty solid.
Loader.io allows you to conduct 3 types of tests in its free plan:
- You can gradually increase traffic from 0 to ‘n’ clients over 1 minute.
- You can maintain ‘n’ clients traffic per second for 1 minute. This can give a rough idea about the real-time capacities.
- You can specify a total of ‘n’ clients traffic to be maintained over 1 minute without any ‘per second’ requirements.
I tested out (1) & (2) only since (3) is just a diluted version of (2). All these tests were done on this live blog itself as I wanted to keep it close to what I am experiencing.
Test 1: Gradually Increase 0 – 250 Clients Over 1 Minute
This was an entry-level test aimed at increasing traffic from 0 – 250 over a period of 1 minute. It passed the test with flying colors.
The average response time was 234ms, and there were no timeout, network, or 400/500 errors at all.
Test 2: Gradually increase 0 – 500 clients over 1 minute
This time, I doubled the traffic load, increasing from 0 – 500 over 1 minute. It breezed through this test too.
The average response time slightly increased to 257ms, and again there were no errors at all.
Test 3: Maintain 500 clients per second for 1 minute
Now I switched over to the second test and tried maintaining 500 clients constantly for 1 minute. Voila! It passed this one too!
The response time was 252ms with zero errors.
Test 4: Maintain 1000 clients per second for 1 minute
This time, I doubled it to maintain 1000 clients constantly for 1 minute. Surprisingly, it passed without any errors this time too. I was not expecting this, honestly.
Although there were no errors, the server response time increased to 381ms.
I was curious to stress the server more, but I didn’t do it as it does not make any sense, since 1000 real-time traffic is already quite a lot, and most websites are not going to experience such a traffic load constantly.
Overall, I am quite satisfied with the performance of VapourHost Ultra, and since it is a dynamic thing, don’t go crazy over the speedtest or load test results. All you need to ensure is a fast-loading website that feels fast to a normal user. And VapourHost Ultra has been able to live up to my expectations in this regard.
VapourHost Ultra Uptime Results:
I use UptimeRobot to monitor downtimes for my blog. Here are the UptimeRobot stats at the time of writing this post:
- Last 24 Hours: 100% Uptime
- Last 7 Days: 100% Uptime
- Last 30 Days: 99.988% Uptime
Since I was on Ultra servers for about 6 weeks, this should give you an idea about the downtimes. In my opinion, it is over 99.9% which is standard in the industry. In my real-world experience, I don’t recall facing any downtimes while working on my blog.
VapourHost Ultra Review:
VapourHost Ultra aims to make your WordPress hosting fast and hassle-free. You can take advantage of the LiteSpeed Enterprise server to configure cache and image optimization. cPanel is included too, which you can use to configure your server, upload files, and more. VapourCDN ensures faster delivery of your website across the world. HTTP/3 protocol is supported. Overall an excellent choice for medium-to-large-sized blogs with Indian or south-Asian traffic. The pricing is justified for the features it offers, however, it needs more pricing tiers. The current pricing structure might not be suitable for all kinds of users.
- One of the Fastest Servers
- CPanel Supported
- Litespeed Enterprise for better cache and image optimization
- VapourCDN Service works great
- Offers in-depth WordPress rupport
- Very very cost-effective compared to everything it offers
- 30 Day Money Back Guarantee
- Lack of pricing tiers, only 4 pricing tiers are insufficient for all kinds of users
- Automatic Backups are kept for 21 days only, you cannot recover beyond that unless you configure your own backups
That was all about VapourHost Ultra Web Hosting. If you are someone who wants to:
- Host a medium-to-large-sized blog without worrying about downtimes,
- Host a blog on the WordPress platform,
- Target audiences from India or the South East Asian countries,
- Get one of the fastest industry-leading speeds,
Then, VapourHost Ultra is the right choice for you. Well, words are not everything. I urge you to try them out yourself, and you will understand their capabilities much better. In case you are not satisfied (which I really doubt), you can opt for their 30-day money-back guarantee. If you have any other queries, feel free to drop a comment below. I will be happy to help.
Thank you for reading. I will be back soon with more interesting updates. Keep visiting HiTricks. Don’t forget to join our Telegram Channel so that you don’t miss our updates.