HostPapa Hosting Review


HostPapa is Canada’s premier hosting company, running LAMP servers in their Toronto datacentres. They’ve carved a niche out of the hosting market by offering Canada-based green hosting at low prices, buying carbon credits to off-set their consumption. One thing to note is that HostPapa (being Canadian) offers extensive support in both English and French, one of the only hosting companies to do so.

Prices starting at $3.95/Month

Shared hosting plans

HostPapa offers a range of hosting plans for their shared hosting customers. Each shared plan is hosted on top quality custom built servers with Intel processors, designed to handle to heavy workload of shared hosting

Starter Plan: $5.99 per month

The starter Plan has an RRP of $5.99 per month for 36 months, but like most hosting companies HostPapa runs sales that get the first month for a low $1.95. The shortest contract is 12 months at $7.99 per month.

The Starter package is (obviously) enough to get you going online, and is designed to get you live fast. It includes 100GB disk space, 2 domains and 25 subdomains, and 25 MySQL databases (phpMyAdmin access). It also includes unlimited bandwidth, which isn’t truly unlimited but is restricted to HostPapa’s terms of service. Customers will be warned if they’re exceeding what’s reasonable consumption for their plan, and if it continues they’ll be throttled.

While this sounds ominous, it’s actually pretty standard practice, and the bandwidth limitation is so high that 99% of customers never even know there’s a ceiling.

The Starter plan also includes everything that you’d expect from a hosting company, like 100 email accounts with both POP3 and IMAP, free registrar transfers, lots of compatibility with third party apps like WordPress, Gallery2, CMSs (Joomla, Moodle, PHPNuke), custom Cron jobs, error pages (.htaccess), and a range of ecommerce solutions (PayPal, OS Commerce Cart, ZenCart). All managed through cPanel or FTP.

HostPapa also includes significant value-add things with their Starter packages, like:

  • SSD drives
  • $225 in marketing credits
  • Enhanced SEO tools
  • 30 day money-back guarantee
  • Panda Cloud AntiSpam Protection
  • Access to HostPapa’s proprietary website builder with 120 design templates

The Shared Plan provides the basic structure for all other shared hosting plans.

Business Plan: $9.99 per month

The Business Plan retails for $9.99 per month for 36 months, but the first month is discounted to $5.95. Again, the shortest contract is 12 months at $11.99 per month.

The goal of the Business Plan is to enable users to build sites that can handle more traffic – therefore, most of the limited services in the Shared plan are now unlimited. This includes:

  • Unlimited websites, disk space, and bandwidth
  • Unlimited domains hosted, subdomains, and add-on domains
  • Unlimited MySQL databases
  • Unlimited email accounts

In addition, the Business Plan comes with more HostPapa add-ons, like:

  • A better version of HostPapa’s website builder
  • CloudFlare CDN caching
  • 30 minutes of one-on-one training time with the HostPapa support team
  • HostPapa’s own email marketing software (similar to MailChimp)

Business Pro Plan: $18.99 per month

The Business Pro Plan is a pretty substantial increase in price, retailing for $18.99 per month for 36 months or $22.99 per month for 12 months. If you sign up, your first month is $12.95.

The extra cash gets you two things: lots more add-ons than other accounts; and less accounts per server, so you get to use more CPU resources and thus your site runs faster. Specifically, you get:

  • Access to their Mobile and Facebook page builder
  • 220+ templates
  • HTML and CSS editing access
  • SSL certificate
  • 1GB website backups
  • SiteLock
  • Dedicated IP

Reseller hosting

HostPapa also offers Reseller hosting, starting at $19.95 per month for 12 months and going up to $79.95 per month for 12 months. The basic Reseller plan comes with 50GB disk space and 500GB bandwidth, going up to 200GB disk space and 1.4TB bandwidth. All plans also include:

  • WHM and cPanel control
  • Billing software via Client Exec or WHMSC
  • RAID backup
  • Unlimited domains, add-ons, subdomains, plus a domain reseller account
  • The ability to totally implement your own branding – there’s no need for anyone to know HostPapa’s involved

VPS hosting

HostPapa’s VPS service starts at $39.99 per month for 12 months and goes all the way up to $119.99 per month for 12 months. You can use VPS hosting month to month (e.g. say you’re an ecommerce site and you want to use VPS over the December shopping period), but it’s more expensive. Plans start at $49.99 per month and going up to $149.99 per month. The VPS-Plus plan (the cheapest one) get you 4 CPU cores, 1.5GB RAM, 50GB storage space, and unlimited bandwidth. As the price goes up you get progressively more cores, RAM, and storage space, capping at 8CPU cores, 6GB RAM, and 200GB storage. Each VPS plan comes with your basic hosting features as well as:

  • cPanel and WHM access (and root access)
  • Hyper V technology dedicated memory
  • Unlimited MySQL and PostgreSQL databases
  • SSL
  • Backups
  • CloudFlare CDN
  • Shell access
  • RAID-10 drives and other security features (brute force detection, firewalls, DDoS responses, SAS 70 Type II certified)


HostPapa uses Perl 5.8.8 (the latest is 5.10.2, so they’re not that far behind). They don’t offer a huge amount of support for Perl, although their VPS plans do come with a Perl Installer Module, which is going to make deploying scripts from CPAN faster and more effective. For their shared server plans, HostPapa offers cPanel access for Perl, but no additional support. Finally, HostPapa does offer CGI scripts for their VPS hosting plans.

Technical details

  • PHP 4 and 5
  • Perl 5.8.8 with cPanel and Perl Module Installer
  • Python
  • Ruby + Ruby on Rails
  • Zend optimizer
  • IonCube PHP loader
  • Flash
  • Git
  • MySQL 5.1


HostPapa offers a lot of excellent hosting options for those looking for basic functionality and some additional website building support and digital marketing help. However, a variety of other hosting companies like A2 Hosting SiteGround, and Arvixe [link to relevant sites] have almost identical offerings but far better reviews regarding customer service than HostPapa.


Prices starting at $3.95/Month

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