ExpressVPN vs NordVPN

ExpressVPN vs NordVPN In April 2021

Express VPN and NordVPN are two of the leading Virtual Private Networks that offer premium services to the public.
Price, speed, and security are the three factors that are very important in looking out for a VPN. But there are more factors that we will look out for such as reliability, features, VPN apps, logging policies, jurisdiction, torrenting, and Netflix & streaming in this vpn comparison between expressvpn vs nordvpn and the later has extra feature's.

Now, let's accurately compare by walking through an attribute-by-attribute.

Which Is Better, Expressvpn or Nordvpn?

We strongly prefer NordVPN.

Quick Review ExpressVPN vs NordVPN


  • Website:
  • Can give uninterrupted streaming
  • Based in the British Virgin Islands
  • Split tunneling
  • Compatible with iOS, macOS, Windows, Linux, Android, Amazon Fire
  • 5 simultaneous connections
  • Custom router firmware
  • Unblocks a wide range of geo-restricted streaming sites


  • Website:
  • Tested as the fastest connection speed
  • Based in Panama
  • Compatible with iOS, macOS, Windows, Linux, Android
  • 6 simultaneous connections
  • dedicated IP options
  • Ad-blocking, automatic Wi-Fi protection, and malware-scanning
  • Unblocks a wide range of geo-restricted streaming sites
  • malware blocker
  • p2p server
  • physical servers
Express VPN

1. Which is Cheaper ExpressVPN or NordVPN?

Winner: NordVPN

Here is the detailed pricing of both ExpressVPN and NordVPN:

NordVPN Pricing

Monthly Plan: $11.95/mo

6-Month Plan; $9.00/mo

2-Year Plan: $3.71/mo

Special Offer: 68% discount on the 2-year plan


Monthly Plan: $12.95/mo

6-Month Plan: $9.99/mo

1-Year Plan: 6.67/mo

Special Offer: Three months free with a 1-year subscription

NordVPN gets cheaper if you subscribe to a long-term plan for VPN. Their two-year discounted rate at $3.71 per month is one of the cheapest you can have in the market. However, a long-term subscription can give you higher risks like not having the option to switch to another VPN provider if the services get bad or won't work for you. However, NordVPN is not just the current cheapest VPN but it is also known to be a high-quality VPN that you can ever get.

ExpressVPN does not offer any free trial, nor do they offer two-year plans. Both companies can give you a 30-day money-back guarantee without forcing you to provide a reason why the service doesn't work for you. If you're looking for an annual VPN plan, then ExpressVPN would be a great deal for you. But if you want a longer commitment and a cheaper price, we suggest you go for NordVPN.

2. Which is Faster ExpressVPN or NordVPN?

Winner: NordVPN

By a huge gap, NordVPN is the fastest VPN. Faster than ExpressVPN based on all of the speed tests ran for this comparison.

For its testing variables, the official VPN app was used for each service to ran all the tests for NordVPN vs ExpressVPN. Also, ExpressVPN's Lightway protocol was made to promote a faster and more secure but it was a closed source, unlike OpenVPN or WireGuard.On the other hand, NordVPN's WireGuard protocol is gaining multiple usage or popularity with VPN service worldwide because of its faster and more secure services. Unlike ExpresVPN's Lightway, WireGuard is open-source. NordLynx is the WireGuard VPN protocol of NordVPn's implementation.

Now, let us see the speed test results of these two VPNs from different locations.

United States

Speed test results in Boston

ExpressVPN speed test result was 138Mbps. The baseline speed for us using virtual servers when this test was conducted was 410Mbps with a close distance of 24 ms ping. Meaning, the result was not as good enough as expected even if ExpressVPN Lightway protocol was used. It was proven that it is slower than the usual VPN speed offered by other companies

With a 410Mbps baseline, the result of NordVPN's speed test was quite good after showing a 445Mbps. It has proven that it is significantly better than ExpressVPN by about 309Mbps. In other words, the WireGuard VPN protocol works better, which is a big edge for the users.

Speed test results in Los Angeles, California

The servers tested in Los Angeles, California showed a result of having Nord VPN (279Mbps) as being faster than ExpressVPN (209) by a large margin. The speed test showed that NordVPN is faster than ExpressVPN.

Speed test results in Texas

The speed tests ran for servers in Texas showed similar results again. NordVPN that has a result of 261 Mbps was faster than ExpressVPN by 54Mbps. It proves again that ExpressVPN's Lightway protocol cannot surpass the speeds of NordVPN's WireGuard or the NordLynx protocol.

Sydney Australia

A few long-distance speed tests were run in the United Kingdom with almost similar results to the previous one. Check this out!

Speed test results in Sydney

ExpressVPN showed a result of 179Mbps, which is the fasted speed test result that it got. But the result below shows that NordVPN is still way better than this. NordVPN has a 295Mbps result and is better than about 60Mbps.

With that, it is clear that NordVPN's performance is way better, which makes it a big reason to win, especially if you opt for gaming or streaming, where speeds and ping are important.

OpenVPN Protocol Speeds (ExpressVPN vs NordVPN)

The OpenVPN speed in every Virtual Private Network is essential since it is being used as a standard protocol for everyone. Now, let us start to tests using OpenVPN for ExpressVPN and NordVPN.

Usually, we can get around 150Mbps or so using ExpressVPN and OpenVPN protocol. Unfortunately, the recent speed testing showed a slower result than NordVPN. These are the results:

  • ExpressVPN with OpenVPN: 50 to 80 Mbps
  • NordVPN with OpenVPN: 200 to 270Mbps

So, for those subscribers who want to use the OpenVPN protocol for speed and security, know that NordVPN offers a better performance advantage in this area again. Even if you use double-VPN servers that encrypt the traffic over to separate hops, NordVPN still did a better job than ExpressVPN's OpenVPN speeds.

Furthermore, take note that ExpressVPN does not grant any double-VPN server configurations or specialty servers like NordVPN does.

Having said those, in all server locations that were tested, NordVPN did a greater job than ExpressVPN. It beats EXpressVPN with OpenVPN and WireGuard protocols in all server locations.


3. Which is More Secured ExpressVPN or NordVPN?

Winner: NordVPN

Server security

Now, let us move forward and be more detailed about the security and encryption of the two VPN industry providers.

When it comes to server security, both VPN companies have their own features and offers. Here are some exceptional offers you can get from ExpressVPN:

  • It uses rented servers from third parties instead of using colocated servers.
  • It uses virtual server locations, which is quite unique compared to other VPNs.
  • All ExpressVPN servers run in RAM-disk mode, which gives a higher level of security and also ensures that no physical data can be stored in any server.

Here are some exceptional offers you can get from NordVPN:

  • It uses servers that are running on dedicated physical hardware in secure data centers instead of using a virtual server location.
  • All NordVPN servers run in RAM-disk mode just like ExpessVPN.
  • It uses self-owned or colocated servers throughout its network, therefore, it does not use any rental servers from third parties making it the best in the server security category.
  • It uses dedicated physical hardware in secure data centers rather than using virtual server locations.


Both ExpressVPN and NordVPN showed good results and utilize strong encryption standards.

  • ExpressVPN: AES-256 cipher, SHA-512 hash authentication, and 4096-bit RSA key exchange were used as data encryption.
  • NordVPN: AES 256-cipher, SHA-256 hash authentication, and 4096-bit RSA key exchange were used as data encryption too.

ExpressVPN and NordVPN offer the same levels of security when it comes to data encryption. The only small difference is their individual hash authentication but nevertheless, it still offers military-grade security that is considered to be the highest standard today.

Leak protection

The leak protection of both Virtual Private Networks showed great results again in this area of testing. Using the VPN test procedures, the leak protection features were fully tested in the respected VPNs.

Here are the desktop clients that ExpressVPN and NordVPN offer:

  • DNS leak protection
  • IP address leak protection for both IPv4 and IPv6 - so this great if you have an IP leak
  • Kill switch feature to block traffic if the VPN connection stops

VPN protocols

NordVPN has an advantage in this area. The main VPN protocols were both supported by ExpressVPN and NordVPN. However, the main difference was that ExpressVPN opted for a closed-source, self-developed Lightway protocol that is not used by anyone else and is not into the kernel while NordVPN used the opposite - opted for a widely-accepted, open-source protocol with WireGuard, which is integrated with Linux.

These are the main VPN protocols:

  • ExpressVPN: OpenVPN TCP, OpenVPN UDP, IPSec/IKEv2, IPSec/L2TP, and Lightway protocol which is a closed source and BETA
  • NordVPN: OpenVPN TCP, OpenVPNUDP, IPSec/IKev2, IPSec/L2TP, and WireGuar

4. Which is More Reliable ExpressVPN or NordVPN?

Winner: ExpressVPN anad NordVPN

Let's take into the different reliability of each VPN.

ExpressVPN's reliability did a great job in the testing. It's considerably the same as the usual VPNs available today.

  • The servers were definitely more variability in speed, especially if the OpenVPN protocol is used with ExpressVPN.
  • The applications were smooth and easy to use having no bugs, issues, or crashes.
  • The connections were stable enough with EXpressVPN, although the OpenVPN protocol takes a while to connect.


Accessing the streaming content is one of the big issues that ExpressVPN gives. In terms of reliability during the previous year, it was not able to unblock some streaming websites, such as BBC iPlayer and the likes.

With NordVPN, the latest round of test results seems to work very well in terms of reliability in the different areas.

  • The servers were reliable and fast having no issues to report.
  • The applications were able to work well without any bugs, issues, or crashes.
  • The connections were stable and fast enough to connect.

There were no issues found with NordVPN in this testing.

Express VPN

5. Which Has Better Features ExpressVPN or NordVPN?

Winner: NordVPN

If you look and test it yourself, you would see that both VPNs offer great features. However, they have their own differences and edges. Let's look into the details.

ExpressVPN has great but limited features. Meaning, it offers the basic VPN features that you get, unlike NordVPN that which gives specialty features. It provides basic and user-friendly VPN applications. These are the main features that you get to enjoy with ExpressVPN:

  • Lightway: Lightway protocol is already mentioned in the previous paragraphs. As we have said, it is quite slower than WireGuard with NordVPN given the result of their respected speed tests. Aside from that, there are other drawbacks that are found with the Lightway protocol such as the closed-source and limited adoption while NordVPN did the opposite of these. However, the advantage of Lightway is that it runs all servers in RAM-disk mode, which makes it unique from NordVPN and the other service providers. (fewer servers)
  • Split-tunneling: The split tunneling option will allow you to route certain applications through the encrypted Virtual Private Network while routing the apps over your unencrypted or regular internet connection. Though this feature is pretty much common with other VPN providers, ExpressVPN still offers a good split tunneling feature with their mobile applications.

On the other hand, NordVPN's features have a big distinction over ExpressVPN. Let's take a look at these features.

  • Double-VPN servers: The double VPN servers will give you two separate hops of encryption traffic. It can give an additional layer of security and encryption without compromising the speed.
  • P2P servers: These are optimized for torrenting traffic making sure that there will be no interruptions in speed or connection issues.
  • Tor-over-VPN servers: With the Tor Network, it will encrypt the traffic in addition to the VPN server. This an important feature while there is a performance tradeoff due to the Tor network.
  • Obfuscated servers: Obfuscated servers will be responsible for concealing the VPN traffic to make it look like regular HTTPS encryption. If you need a VPN in a restricted country or other restricted network situation wherein most VPNs will be blocked, this will be useful.
  • CyberSec: this another security feature that blocks ads, trackers, phishing domains, and trackers from infecting your device. This feature is automatically enabled in the VPN app. If you need a blocking feature, this would be perfect since it works for the entire operating system when the VPN is on.
  • WireGuard: WireGuard protocol or NordLynx makes your speed faster when streaming. Moreover, there are also some great benefits from this such as having an instant connection; sealess transitions between networks, especially when switching from WiFi to 4G; more reliability and fewer dropped connections, and can give you better battery life with mobile devices.
  • browser extension is better

6. Which VPN Apps Work Better ExpressVPN or NordVPN?

Winner: ExpressVPN

The design and usability were the main factors in this category.

With ExpressVPN, it shows a very clean and minimal. Meaning, it can be an advantage for beginners since it is very simple, user-friendly, and gives no complicated access. To see more of its features and settings, you will need to click at least three lines in the top-left corner of the page, which will open a second window. Do not worry, it won't be confusing since it keeps the main app screen less cluttered.

Moreover, if you want to switch to a different server with ExpressVPN, you just need to either click the active server to open up a second window of server locations or click one of the two options at the bottom part of the app. ExpressVPN simply relies on a second screen pop-up for more options.

Now, NordVPN apps have more options and larger than ExpressVPN. On the left side of the NordVPN client, you can automatically see the specialty servers and country locations of these said features. You can also choose a server location with only one click to the global map. Moreover, this application is quite larger but it also gives you direct access to features, server location, and specialty servers.

The choice will be on the user's preference depending on how tech-savvy he/she is. But in general, EXpressVPN gives an easier VPN app for its users.

7. Which Has a Better Logging Policy ExpressVPN or NordVPN?

Winner: ExpressVPN and NordVPN

ExpressVPN and NordVPN's privacy and logs are both great options since it has no verified logs result in the testing.

ExpressVPN has always been maintaining a good track record when it comes to logging policy since it is always the main factor of the users when looking for a VPN provider. Meaning, ExpressVPN does not access or keep any record of the websites you visit regardless of what it is.

It has a straightforward no logs policy on their website:

ExpressVPN stores no activity logs and no connection logs from our users. Here's what that means:

No activity logs. ExpressVPN does not see or record which websites you visit. We never log the destination or contents of your traffic, and we run our own private, zero-knowledge DNS on every VPN server for added privacy and anonymity.

No connection logs. ExpressVPN never logs connection timestamps, session duration, your source IP address, or the ExpressVPN IP address that your computer assumes when connected to the VPN.

Like NordVPN, it undergoes a third-party no logs audit which was performed by the PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) and verified the privacy protection and no-logs policy measures are secured.

Furthermore, NordVPN's logging policy does not store any of your connection timestamps, session information, bandwidth, traffic data, IP addresses, etc. As explained on their website, this is their commitment to their users:

We do not store connection timestamps, session information, used bandwidth, traffic data, IP addresses, or other data. Nothing to store - nothing to share with anyone.

As we have said, its logging policy was verified by the PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), which is a third-party audit to verify their performance.

8. ExpressVPN vs NordVPN Jurisdictions

Winner: ExpressVPN and NordVPN

Both Virtual Private Network providers are based in good privacy jurisdictions, where your data is surely secured.

ExpressVPN is based in the British Virgin Islands where it has an ideal location for the users' data security and privacy. The British Virgin Islands is not a member of the Five Eyes, Nine Eyes, Fourteen Eyes surveillance group. Also, it is a free and independent country that has its own judicial and legal system despite being known to have historical ties to the British. To prove that it has a better jurisdiction, Surfshark is also joining the British Virgin Islands for their jurisdiction.

NordVPN is based in Panama where it is not a member of the Five Eyes, Nine Eyes, Fourteen Eyes, too. It is generally considered to be a good foreign jurisdiction, which is safe from the United States and the European influence.

Both of these countries have strong privacy protections in place, which makes it more popular for the Virtual Private Network companies as well as the Business and Banking industry that requires a higher demand for security.

9. Who Passes the Torrenting Tests ExpressVPN or NordVPN?

Winner: NordVPN

In this category, both VPN providers showed recommendable results. However, there are some differences that you should take note such as the speed and the leak protection.

  • Speed: ExpressVPN was quite slower than NordVPN. Having the speed tests shown previously, it resulted that NordVPN has a faster speed for torrenting.
  • Leak protection: As mentioned above, both ExpressVPN and NordVPN offer a good leak protection for their subscribers. Each VPN protects your traffic through its kill-switch feature by hiding your real IP Address and location while torrenting files. Moreover, if the VPN will be accidentally disconnected, the kill-switch feature will be automatically activated.
  • p2p traffic including p2p file sharing is handled well

10. Which Unblocks Netflix Better ExpressVPN or NordVPN?

Winner: ExpressVPN and NordVPN

Are you the kind of VPN user that wants to stream Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Amazon Prime, etc.? Both ExpressVPN and NordVPN can help you access it easily. Read their respective results below:

ExpressVPN will give you 24/7 or unlimited access to Netflix but only for selected regions. However, you need not worry since it covers the main 13 regions that most Netflix subscribers use such as the UK, US, Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, Singapore, and Spain. It will allow you to stream in the HD version with great speed.

NordVPN currently has a larger number of Netflix libraries than ExpressVPN. By having more than 1 covered region ExpressVPN, it can allow you to stream into these countries such as the US, UK, Canada, Germany, France, Italy, Netherlands, Spain, Japan, Australia, India, Brazil, South Korea, and Finland.

Other streaming sites

With regards to multiple streaming site (s), the two VPNs have the same performance as well and pretty good internet speed and download speed.

These are the streaming sites that are supported by ExpressVPN:

  • Netflix
  • Hulu
  • Sky Go
  • Amazon Prime Video
  • ABC
  • CBS
  • ITV
  • Channel 4

With NordVPN, these are the streaming sites that are being supported:

  • Netflix
  • Amazon Prime Video
  • BBC iPlayer
  • CBS
  • NBC
  • ITV
  • Channel 4

Both Virtual Private Networks can also perform well in restricted regions such as China. Although ExpressVPN is already blocked by the Chinese government, it still made a way out for its subscribers by giving alternative IP addresses. However, there are sometimes service outages since it is strongly monitored by the People's Republic. Still, it has a strong record when it comes to having its way around from the newly-introduced blocks from China.

With NordVPN, It consistently works with Amazon Prime Video, Hulu, Disney+, and more. However, there are also instances that service outages will occur, especially with Netflix. If the Netflix library does not correspond properly to your server, NordVPN will automatically redirect you to another Netflix library such as the UK, Singapore, or more.

Both ExpressVPN and NordVPN offer dedicated apps in the Amazon store if ever you need one for FireTV or Firestick.

11. Which Is Easier in Payments and Refunds ExpressVPN or NordVPN?

Winner: ExpressVPN

Both expression and NordVPN give a wide range of payment methods for their subscribers. All the major credit card companies are available as well as PayPal, Bitcoin, and other payment processors.

With ExpressVPN, all you need to do is to input your valid email address and your payment details.

NordVPN has disregarded PayPal in their payment options since 2019 for no reason, which made it a hindrance since most users use PayPal during payment. However, all other major payment methods are available such as Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.

With refunds, both offer a 30-day money-back guarantee with different discounts and special packages on the holidays.

To make it more reassuring, you can test both VPNs for a few weeks and cancel which seems to work less for you.

How Do Expressvpn And Nordvpn Handle Your Data?

NordVPN and ExpressVPN use industry-accepted 256-bit encryption. NordVPN uses another additional security feature a NAT firewall located on their servers.

Is Nordvpn Owned By China?

China secretly owns many of the world's VPN providers, however, there is no evidence I can find to say it is owned by one of these secret Chinese companies.

Is Vpn Legal In Russia?

Russia has been increasing its activity in blocking VPN on the Russian Iron Firewall - But as long as you do not use it to access sites the government blocks you should be ok.

What Is The Best Vpn Provider To Encrypt Traffic?

NordVPN has is the best encryption and encryption safeguards.

What Are The Best Vpns That Offer A Dedicated Ip?

NordVPN is a good choice here

What Is The Best Vpn Provider For Germany?

Nord VPN is a great selection for German VPN service.

See Our Other VPN Comparison's here

Has Expressvpn Ever Been Hacked?

Yes it has - but it keeps no identifying data -so there was no customer breach - they apparently cross the worlds biggest hacker and paid the price.
Bob has worked as a sales and marketing manager for some of the worlds largest tech companies. He brings a real depth of knowledge and is simply passionate about the advances in security technology.
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