How are you choosing instances?

In many self-hosting services, I see there are many options for many instances and all look similar even some services have many same looking instances in the term usability, privacy and security, So how could i choose between them?

P.s I am unable to selfhost for many reasons releated to the expensive cost of the servers in my poor country and the limited internet quota available here.

You mean for a service like Lemmy? Some people may choose:

  1. closer geographically because it’s sometimes faster
  2. moderation policies and federation/defederation policies
  3. larger instances may mean better survivability, or smaller instances because they seem to be less attractive targets for cyberattacks
  4. larger instances because some functionalities (like community searches, post searches) will be faster because the contents are most likely on the server already
  5. based on the laws of the country where the instance is hosted

All in all, you can also create accounts on a few instances and just try them out.