The obvious alternative to gmail is outlook.com which some may remember as hotmail from back in the day and is Microsoft’s email offering. Free too!
There are plenty of others companies offering email provision but gmail is probably one of the best free ones.
Here is a run down on the top current offerings although there are others.
What I do is to pay for my own domain and email. It isn’t for everyone as it does require some initial setup but essentially you can register your own domain - my last name is a bit rare so I bagged it! You can use godaddy, www.ionos.co.uk or www.123-reg.co.uk to setup the domain and then setup email on top of that BUT you will pay for the privilege unless you are willing to run your own mail server!
You can setup tour own domain and email using Office365 which will cost you but you get Office Apps and online storage as well
It really depends on what you want - if privacy and encrypted mail are your thing then look at ProtonMail. Free and ease of use across devices then Outlook.com.