ExpressVPN vs NordVPN in 2023: Know which is best via this abreast comparison

Ruheni Mathenge Last updated: January 2, 2023 Read time: 33 minutes Disclosure
Facts checked by Ali Qamar

We ran extensive tests and compared ExpressVPN vs NordVPN under strict criteria of 14 different categories. We have a winner but with a small margin. Find out the winner in this detailed (yet easy-to-navigate and digest) comparison.

Sneak peek at ExpressVPN vs NordVPN comparison

ExpressVPN and NordVPN are the leading service providers, claiming to rule the VPN world by offering top-notch services, superior performance, and impressive data privacy. Hence, it becomes difficult for an average user to pick one. However, there lie some subtle differences between the two, knowing which will definitely help you identify the right choice. For instance, NordVPN costs less than ExpressVPN. Likewise, NordVPN supports six simultaneous device connections, whereas ExpressVPN support five. Yet, while these things give NordVPN an edge, ExpressVPN takes the lead when it comes to offering blazing-fast connection speeds and the choice of server locations. Learn more about the differences between the two in this detailed ExpressVPN vs NordVPN comparison.

Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) are becoming more popular worldwide due to the increasing awareness of online security. And, ExpressVPN and NordVPN are the most reputable VPNs on the market. Both of them are well-established and offer high-quality services that you will base your decision on personal needs.

This is a head to head comparison pitting the two services against each other. We used 14 categories to test ExpressVPN vs. NordVPN to see which is better than the other.

Even though by a little margin, but still, ExpressVPN emerged the winner due to its fast speed and powerful servers for browsing, torrenting, streaming, and gaming. Moreover, it has an obfuscation feature for people living in countries that restrict VPN usage, like China.

NordVPN is also a great choice due to its expansive server network and unblocking capabilities. It is also affordable and offers extra security features such as malware protection and double VPN. Let’s compare these VPN industry giants in detail.

Quick comparison

Are you short of time? Here is a quick summary comparing ExpressVPN and NordVPN on a strict criteria:

  ExpressVPN NordVPN
Pricing The annual-plan is as low as $8.32/month. It comes with a 30-days money-back guarantee. Two-year-plan is only $2.86/month plus three months free.
Sever coverage 3,000 servers in 94 countries spread across 160 locations. 5,471 servers in 59 countries.
Unblocking capabilities and performance Unblocks all major streaming services such as Netflix, BBC iPlayer, ,Amazon Prime Videos and more. Bypasses all restrictions with the SmartPlay feature. Unblocks Netflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime Video, and others.
Security TrustedServer TechnologyAES 256-bit encryption, Network Lock (automatic kill switch), DNS/IPv6 leak protection, split tunneling, OpenVPN UDP/TCP, PPTP, and L2TP/IPsec protocols, Perfect forward secrecy. AES 2356-bit encryption, automatic kill switch, double VPN, ad and malware blocker, perfect forward secrecy, NordLocker, IKEv2/IPSec protocol.
Torrenting P2P sharing across all servers, unlimited bandwidth, and DNS on the servers. Unlimited bandwidth and data, P2P optimized servers, and SOCKS5 proxies.
Gaming Steady and consistent speeds, buffering, and lagging free gaming. Maintains high speeds in gaming.  
Does it work in China? Yes. Offers obfuscation feature, has servers in Hong Kong, bypasses the great firewall of China. Yes. Obfuscated servers, has servers in Hong Kong, Taiwan, Singapore, Vietnam, and Thailand.
Device compatibility Native apps for Android, Windows, macOS, iOS, and Linux. Allows five simultaneous connections. Compatible with Windows, macOS, Android, iOS, AND Linux. Supports six simultaneous devices.
Privacy Strict zero-logs policy, based in the British Virgin Islands, independently audited and Tor Over VPN. No-logs policy, registered in Panama, Cybersec ad, and malware protection.
Customer support 24/7 user-friendly live chat, email support, user manuals, FAQ section and setup tutorials. 24/7 live chat and ticketing system, chatbot, FAQ section, and setup guides.

ExpressVPN vs. NordVPN: The attribute-by-attribute, detailed, analysis

We think the best way to accurately compare these top VPN services is by analyzing them attribute-by-attribute. We did all the hard work for you, our readers. Here is our full in-depth comparison of ExpressVPN and NordVPN:

1. Pricing

The pricing structure of both services is as follows.

  ExpressVPN NordVPN
Plans period 1 month 6 months 1 year 1 month 1 year 2 years 3 years
Discounts and special offers Save 35% on the annual plan plus 3 months free 68% discount on the 2-year plan and 3 months free
Price ranges $6.67 – $12.95 $3.71 – $11.95
Payment methods PayPal, Bitcoin and Credit cards Cryptocurrency, PayPal, credit card, AmazonPay, Sofort and prepaid card
Money-back guarantee 30 days 30 days

It is important to note that you will get the same features regardless of the plan you choose. Longer plans are just cheaper but do not include extra features.

As you can see, both services get more affordable on the longer plans due to the discounts offered. In terms of affordability, NordVPN is a clear winner with the two-year plan at only $2.75/month plus 3 months free. In contrast, ExpressVPN’s lowest price is 47% more than NordVPN’s longest plan.

2. Server coverage

Both VPNs have expansive server networks to help you access geo-blocked content in many countries. NordVPN has more servers while ExpressVPN’s servers are located in more countries.

  ExpressVPN NordVPN
Number of servers 3,000 5,471
Countries covered 94 59

Luckily, both services have plenty of servers in countries such as the US, Canada, and the UK. They perform equally well as the servers are super-fast.

The number of servers is more important than the network’s size if you need to access content from a specific region. You will not get a new IP address to bypass geo-blocks if the provider does not have servers in a particular region. For instance, ExpressVPN will be a great choice to unblock banking services in the Bahamas since NordVPN does not have servers there.