VPNs typically have a feature that allows multiple user traffic through a single public IP address. This makes it difficult to track a user over a VPN because the traffic coming from a single IP can come from any number of customers.
VPNs often offer multiple locations, so users can choose where the traffic should come from.
Connecting to the SSH server and running a Socks proxy can be easy, but you still need to completely lock the server, manage the patches, check for intrusions, or other errors that need to be manually intervened.
Then you have to worry about the safety of the SSH tunnel. Which SSH versions will you allow? Which ciphers?
If your SSH proxy fails for maintenance, the proxy is offline, unlike a VPN service, which typically has multiple redundant servers.