ExpressVPN vs NordVPN in 2021: Know which is best via this abreast comparison

Last updated by   Ruheni Mathenge
Disclosure
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.

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:

 ExpressVPNNordVPN
PricingThe 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 coverage3,000 servers in 94 countries spread across 160 locations.5,471 servers in 59 countries.
Unblocking capabilities and performanceUnblocks 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.
SecurityTrustedServer 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.
TorrentingP2P sharing across all servers, unlimited bandwidth, and DNS on the servers.Unlimited bandwidth and data, P2P optimized servers, and SOCKS5 proxies.
GamingSteady 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 compatibilityNative apps for Android, Windows, macOS, iOS, and Linux. Allows five simultaneous connections.Compatible with Windows, macOS, Android, iOS, AND Linux. Supports six simultaneous devices.
PrivacyStrict 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 support24/7 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.

 ExpressVPNNordVPN
Plans period1 month 6 months 1 year1 month 1 year 2 years 3 years
Discounts and special offersSave 35% on the annual plan plus 3 months free68% discount on the 2-year plan and 3 months free
Price ranges$6.67 – $12.95$3.71 – $11.95
Payment methodsPayPal, Bitcoin and Credit cardsCryptocurrency, PayPal, credit card, AmazonPay, Sofort and prepaid card
Money-back guarantee30 days30 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.

 ExpressVPNNordVPN
Number of servers3,0005,471
Countries covered9459

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.

Conversely, if you want to bypass geo-restrictions in India, NordVPN will be the ideal option. It has more than 30 servers in two locations, while ExpressVPN boasts only three India servers.

If you want to use a VPN in a heavily-censored country, performance is more critical than the number of servers. For instance, ExpressVPN works better in China as it has servers in nearby locations such as Hong Kong and Japan.

Virtual server location

Usually, when you connect to a VPN server, the IP address and the servers will be in the same location.

ExpressVPN offers virtual servers where your IP address is in a particular country while the server is located somewhere else. This is intended to improve performance and speed if you connect to a country that offers better connections.

Unfortunately, NordVPN does not have virtual server locations. This means that it will route your traffic in your target country directly.

3. Unblocking capabilities

ExpressVPN and NordVPN are the top services when it comes to bypassing geo-restrictions. These VPNs will enable you to consistently access the most extensive content libraries of the top streaming platforms.

 ExpressVPNNordVPN
NetflixThe US, the UK, Canada, AustraliaThe US, the UK
HuluThe US, JapanThe US, Japan
Amazon Prime VideoYesYes
BBC iPlayerYesYes
Sky GoYesYes
ITVYesYes
CBSYesYes
ABCYesNo

While both services are good at unblocking content, ExpressVPN has the edge over NordVPN as it unblocks more Netflix libraries. However, some ExpressVPN servers may not work in a particular region. In such a case, switch to another server or get in touch with customer support if the problem persists.

Every NordVPN server we tested unblocks Netflix. Its system will automatically redirect your connection to the US Netflix library if the server location you want to access cannot be unblocked.

Both of these VPNs work well with Kodi to get past restrictions and access geo-blocked content. They support multiple protocols in case your Kodi Box does not work with the default OpenVPN.

NordVPN performs better than other VPNs on the market, but we had to switch to standard definition (SD) to avoid buffering on some servers. This might be a big issue if you have a slower baseline speed.

So, which VPN is best for streaming? Generally, ExpressVPN is better for streaming due to its blazing-fast servers. For example, we unblocked Netflix and watched Stranger Things, BoJack Horseman, and Money Heist in high definition without buffering or lagging. Moreover, you could access more content and services as ExpressVPN has more server locations than NordVPN.

4. ExpressVPN vs NordVPN: Which is more secure?

Both ExpressVPN and NordVPN offer state-of-the-art security features to keep you safe and secure. Here is a summary of the main security features of both:

 ExpressVPNNordVPN
Server security standardTrustedServer Technology makes the server run on RAM instead of hard drives. Ensures there is nothing stored anywhere physicallyServers still write data on traditional hard drives. Your information is kept on a physical hard drive until it is erased manually
EncryptionAES 256-bit encryption, 4096-bit RSA key, AES-bit cipher, SHA-512 HMAC authentication, and perfect forward secrecyAES 256-bit encryption, SHA-384 authentication, 2048-bit DH key, and perfect forward secrecy
Logs policyNo-logs policy and externally auditedZero-logs policy and externally audited
ProtocolsOpenVPN UDP is the default protocol, but PPTP, OpenVPN TCP, and L2TP/IPsec are also supportedIKEv2/IPSec is the default protocol for iOS and macOS, but you can switch to OpenVPN. They are also rolling out NordLynx to improve speeds
Kill switchCalls it Network Lock. Available for macOS, Windows, Linux and routersAvailable on Android, macOS, iOS, Linux, and Windows
AdblockerNoCyberSec suite to block ads, malware and trackers
Leak protectionDNS leak protectionDNS leak protection
Double VPNNoYes
Static IP addressNoYes
Split tunnelingYesYes

Encryption

One of the most important factors to consider when choosing a VPN service is the security features it offers. Both NordVPN and ExpressVPN use military-grade AES 256–bit encryption, which is almost impossible to break.

Both VPNs combine encryption with other security features for additional protection. For example, the perfect forward secrecy changes your encryption and assigns you a new one every time you start a session.

Protocol

A VPN protocol is a set of instructions that forms the encrypted tunnel to pass your traffic. There are various protocols, and each offers a solution to a safe, private, and anonymous connection.

NordVPN and ExpressVPN use two of the safest protocols, OpenVPN and IKEv2, as the default. You can use OpenVPN for light activities like normal browsing, online banking, etc. On the other hand, IKEv2 is ideal for intensive tasks such as torrenting and gaming, because it is faster.

NordVPN is slightly ahead of ExpressVPN as it offers NordLynx, a technology built around WireGuard protocol. Since it uses fewer lines of code, it has the benefits of faster speeds while still maintaining your privacy. It is available on Linux, Windows, iOS, Android, and macOS.

Adblocker

VPNs that offer ad blockers are always rated highly. Viruses and malware can come in many forms, even on safe websites and HTTPS URLs. NordVPN trounces ExpressVPN here as it offers an effective ad blocker dubbed CyberSec suite. Besides eliminating ads, it also blocks malware and trackers to keep you safe.

Unfortunately, ExpressVPN does not offer an ad blocker. However, this shouldn’t be a big issue as it is compatible with many third-party ad blocker vendors.

Leak protection

A VPN passes your traffic through an encrypted tunnel, but it could leak your IP accidentally due to software faults. This could make your activities visible to third parties such as government agencies or internet service providers. It also makes you susceptible to spies and trackers who can trace your real location.

Both services claim to stop any kind of leakage. We ran tests with our Windows and Mac devices and did not experience IPv6, DNS, IPv4 or WebRTC leaks.

The kill switch offered by both ExpressVPN and NordVPN will automatically cut your traffic if the VPN connection drops. This means your real IP address, browsing history and identity will remain hidden even if the VPN service stops working for a while.

ExpressVPN offers the feature on Windows, macOS, Linux, and routers but not on iOS devices.

NordVPN’s kill switch is more advanced as it allows you to control which apps to block. You can block risky apps so that you can stay connected even if the VPN connection drops.

Server security

ExpressVPN uses TrustedServer technology that makes every server run on random access memory (RAM). Since the memory is incapable of storing any data, your information gets wiped out completely after every session. It makes you less susceptible to attacks as there is no data to be intercepted in the first place.

Conversely, NordVPN does not use RAM but stores your data on hard drives. Your information can be at risk even though the provider claims to observe a zero-logs policy.

Double VPN

This is an additional security feature offered by NordVPN.

It is an excellent feature for banking and making payments as it will pass your traffic through two servers instead of one.

The configuration will ensure your sensitive financial information remains completely private even though it might slightly slow your speed. ExpressVPN does not offer this feature.

Split tunneling

Split tunneling is a standout feature that lets you choose which traffic to encrypt and the one to leave untouched. If you want all your traffic except on Chrome to be encrypted, you can configure it such that only Chrome won’t go through the tunnel. ExpressVPN offers it on macOS and Windows devices.

While NordVPN does not offer this feature on the desktop, you can use the browser extensions instead to achieve the same purpose. When using either the Chrome or the Firefox extensions, only your browser traffic will be encrypted. The apps outside the browser will use the regular traffic just like split tunneling works.

Security audits

Many VPN services do not undergo independent audits due to the level of scrutiny involved. Both NordVPN and ExpressVPN have had multiple cybersecurity audits as a commitment to honesty and transparency.

  • ExpressVPN: Undergoes independent audit by Cure3 a renowned cybersecurity firm and PricewaterhouseCoopers.
  • NordVPN: Suffered a slight security breach in 2019 but solved it successfully. VerSprite and PricewaterhouseCoopers audit it.

5. Privacy and anonymity

It is a tie in this category since both services are based in privacy-friendly countries.

 ExpressVPNNordVPN
The country where the provider is basedThe British Virgin IslandsPanama
Headquartered in 14-Eyes CountriesNoNo
Information required to sign upEmail addressEmail address
Anonymous payment methodsMint and BitcoinEthereum, Bitcoin, Litecoin, Zcash, Gridcoin, Ripple, Dash, and Monero (the infamous privacy coin)
Independent auditAudited by PwC to ascertain the no-logs policy and TrustedServer claimsAudited by PwC to demonstrate  the zero-logs practices are consistent with the policy
Warrant CanaryNot availableMakes daily confirmation that it hasn’t received any request from government agencies to disclose users’ data

Both ExpressVPN and NordVPN have honest and straightforward no-logs policies. The providers do not hold your information including data content, traffic, sites visited, and DNS queries.

Where a VPN vendor is based is an essential consideration since it affects how the provider handles your information. ExpressVPN is based in the British Virgin Islands, a privacy-friendly country that does not have data retention laws.

NordVPN is headquartered in Panama, which is not as safe as you may think. The country has strict copyright laws and has been pressured by the US authorities to cooperate on several occasions. Fortunately, the company does not operate servers in its base country, allowing it to evade such restrictions.

It is good to note that these regions are outside the 5, 9, and 14-Eye Alliance Countries, an alliance of countries that share intelligence. This means that international security agencies will not compel the providers to give user information.

Because both ExpressVPN and NordVPN have a no-logs policy, it brings the question of opening an account anonymously. You might be easily traced if you open an account with a credit card. Luckily, both services allow you to pay through cryptocurrencies so that you won’t be traced.

ExpressVPN also supports Mint Card, a prepaid card that you can load cash in stores without identifying yourself. Since the VPNs will ask you to provide an email account when opening an account, you can use burner one. So, it is possible to create an anonymous account to remain completely private.

Tor compatibility

ExpressVPN and NordVPN are among the few VPN services that are compatible with the Tor network. Remarkably, both services support the Onion over VPN setup instead of the reverse. Although your internet speed may take a significant hit, it is one of the best ways to stay completely anonymous.

NordVPN has a button so you can connect to the Tor Network seamlessly without opening the Tor browser. Alternatively, you can first manually connect to a NordVPN server then start the Tor browser. This is the only VPN that allows you to access the Tor network through any browser.

7. Setup

VPN services employ various methods to hide IP addresses. NordVPN and ExpressVPN use the industry-standard shared address system. Your traffic is labelled with the IP address of the server you are using. This means you will share the same address with other users connected to the same server. If anyone tries to intercept the traffic, they will be redirected to the server and not the user.

The shared IP address structure is managed by a system known as port address mapping (PAT). The technology makes it impossible to detect an IP address behind the gateway, creating a NAT firewall. Both NordVPN and ExpressVPN offer this protection.

That system also protects you from DDoS attacks because anyone planning to attack you will need your IP address. The VPN will mask your IP address, and only the IP address of the server you are connected to will be visible.

So, in case of a DDoS attack, the VPN server will absorb the shock since it has a bigger capacity than your computer. NordVPN will offer you additional DDoS protection if you are attacked frequently. ExpressVPN does not offer the service.

You will need a dedicated or static IP address if you want to start your personal server. This may be for gaming, a website, or a cloud storage system. NordVPN offers the static address at an extra fee a year. With a dedicated IP address, you can access content from a particular region, even if other IP addresses are not working there.

It doesn’t matter where you live. You can choose to have an IP address from the US, the UK, Germany, or the Netherlands. ExpressVPN does not offer static IP addresses. However, it rotates its IP addresses frequently to improve speeds and the overall experience.

8. Logging policy and data storage

Logging policy and data storage
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NordVPN and ExpressVPN observe a strict zero-logs policy and do not keep any identifiable information. This means that none of your data or activities can be intercepted.

Logging policy

Since most VPN providers claim to have a strict zero-logs policy, it is unclear what it means. However, a closer look shows that many privacy policies have loopholes.

In fact, some record users’ browsing history, IP addresses, and more. It is not acceptable to keep such identifying information as there have been cases of providers selling the data to the highest bidder.

We did an investigation on ExpressVPN vs NordVPN policies to see whether they are genuine. None of the services records DNS queries, IP address, traffic destination, browsing history, or download/uploads.

Both VPN services are candid about their privacy policies and have undergone an independent audit by reputable firms. PricehousewaterCoopers, one of the world’s biggest audit firms, has confirmed that their practices align with their policies.

In 2017, ExpressVPN’s zero-logs policy proved genuine when Turkish security authorities confiscated its servers to investigate crimes. They couldn’t find any data since the TrustedServer technology ensures that there is no data stored. This is a real-life example that ExpressVPN is a reputable and trustworthy provider.

Data storage

We noticed that both VPN services store basic information like name, email address, and payment methods during testing. You should not worry about these practices as they’ll allow you to auto-renew your plan. However, if you want to remain totally anonymous, you can use a fake email address and pay using cryptocurrencies.

9. Torrenting

Both NordVPN and ExpressVPN do not cap on bandwidth, data, or speed like other providers. This means you can download and share as much as you want without any restrictions or limitations.

Most of the NordVPN servers are P2P optimized. You can easily access these servers from the sidebar, saving you time to visit the website. While ExpressVPN does not have P2P dedicated servers, it allows torrenting on its entire network.

We downloaded a 2.5GB movie using both VPNs to test the torrenting speed. ExpressVPN is faster as it only took less than three minutes to download the video while NordVPN took more time.

There is a close match between the services in terms of torrenting security. You are assured of top-level protection, and your torrenting activities or history will not leak.

NordVPN also offers SOCKS5 proxies for faster torrenting speeds. However, the proxy is not fully encrypted so you should use it together with NordVPN for maximum security.

Both services work well with P2P clients such as BitTorrent, Vuze and uTorrent as well as torrenting platforms including Pirates Bay, RABRG, etc.

Safety while torrenting

Torrenting is a data-intensive activity, especially if you are downloading and sharing large files. Your ISP will likely throttle your internet speed if it finds out that you are using too much data.

Making it worse, you can easily get into trouble if you accidentally torrent copyrighted material. Even though we don’t encourage you to use copyrighted material, it is good to be safe if you unknowingly download questionable content.

It isn’t easy to get a reliable VPN for torrenting because most providers don’t even have P2P servers. Others have inferior privacy features and anti-torrenting policies. NordVPN has specific P2P optimized servers while ExpressVPN allows torrenting on all its servers. 

You will be pleased that both VPNs use the latest features to protect your torrenting activities. They include military encryption, zero-logs policy, automatic kill switch, DNS leak protection, and more.

10. Do they work in China?

ExpressVPN and NordVPN work in China
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The Great Firewall of China blocks almost all major international sites, including Facebook, Google, YouTube, and more. Many VPNs are not powerful enough to get past the firewall.

A few years ago, the Chinese government cracked down on VPNs, but ExpressVPN still works. It has servers close to the country like Hong Kong, allowing you to access restricted content. Also, the obfuscation feature will disguise your VPN traffic to allow you to access local content undetected.

Unluckily, NordVPN does not have servers inside China. However, it offers obfuscated servers to get past the Great Firewall. Besides encrypting your data, these servers will also mask your VPN activities. This means the firewall will not see you are using a VPN so you will remain completely anonymous and undetected.

Whether you want to access YouTube, Facebook, or Google, NordVPN guarantees to work inside China. However, due to censorship, you will not be able to access and download the app. So, you will have to install the VPN app before entering the country.

The VPN also has several servers close to China like Hong Kong, Singapore, Vietnam, Thailand and Taiwan. So, even if your connection is blocked in China, you can connect to servers in these locations.

ExpressVPN has won this category by a small margin because of its fast speeds for seamless streaming. The servers will let you watch YouTube videos with minimal lag.

11. Gaming

NordVPN and ExpressVPN for Games
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NordVPN and ExpressVPN have done well in other categories, but we were wary of how they’ll perform in this one.

After all, you cannot know the performance and reliability of a VPN by just running a speed test.

Both services easily get past geo-restrictions to unblock games and offer watertight security for a smooth gaming experience. ExpressVPN is the ideal VPN for gaming as it is slightly faster than NordVPN.

Gaming speed

If you are an enthusiastic gamer, you wouldn’t want an unresponsive VPN that slows your speeds to a crawl.

We tested ExpressVPN vs NordVPN with Fortnite, which is a data-intensive battle game to see the impact on latency. The general thumb rule is that the lower the latency, the better.

We found ExpressVPN to be more responsive. The provider had less lag as it has a lower latency. With the unlimited bandwidth and fast-speed servers, you will keep up with other players when playing Fortnite.

On the other hand, NordVPN is a good gaming VPN, too. Although you might experience minimal lags, it will not affect your gameplay. Depending on your baseline internet speed, NordVPN may negatively impact your game due to its high latency.

Gaming security

Other players or hackers can track your IP address and send DDoS attacks to shut your server in a multiplayer game. This can cause severe buffering or even crash your game. Initially, these attacks were witnessed at competitive games but are rapidly increasing in casual gameplay.

A P2P game is more dangerous as it requires a direct connection between players. Your IP address will become easily accessible and can be used to attack you.

The best solution to DDoS attacks is a VPN. It will hide your real IP address and encrypt your traffic so you can remain private and anonymous.

Both NordVPN and ExpressVPN have advanced security features to keep you safe from DDoS attacks. These are premium services, and your gaming opponents will not succeed to attack you no matter how hard they try.

Unblocking geo-blocked games and DLC

In most cases, new games and DLC are only available in the countries that are part of the initial launch. This means you cannot access the games if your country is not involved. However, you can use a VPN to change your IP address.

That tricks the game servers that you are within the country where the game is available. Both ExpressVPN and NordVPN are good at bypassing restrictions allowing you to access whichever game you want.

12. Device compatibility

Device compatibility
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We tested each provider and found out that both work well with virtually every device. However, NordVPN performs better.

ExpressVPN and NordVPN offer compatibility across various devices, operating systems, and browser extensions. NordVPN has SmartDNS that allows you to protect devices that don’t normally work with VPNs such as PlayStation and Kodi.

Both services will allow you to add several simultaneous connections on a single subscription. NordVPN allows you to connect six devices while ExpressVPN only five. This feature is very convenient if you need to protect multiple devices.

App differences between platforms

ExpressVPN and NordVPN do not offer the same features on all operating systems.

It is good to conduct due diligence to know the specific features offered to ensure the service you choose will meet your needs. Some features are available on some devices and not on others.

You should install the ExpressVPN app on the desktop to get the best out of it. The mobile apps are deprived of a few critical features, but the desktop platforms offer full functionality. You can easily download and configure the Android and iOS apps from the Google Play Store and Apple App Store.

The Android and iOS apps are slightly different, and both of them lack some of the features found on the desktop app. For example, there is no Tor compatibility, IPv6 leak protection, and speed test. However, connections are reliable and consistent despite the absence of these features.

Setting the NordVPN iOS and Android apps is effortless with just a one-click connection. Once you download and install the app, you will only need to sign in to get started.

Activate the CyberSec suite ad blocker and connect to a server in your preferred location. You can also use the Quick Connect feature to connect to the most optimal server automatically.

While the interface looks similar on both mobile apps, there are a few differences worth the mention. For example, the Android app is deprived of some security protocols. iOS users can choose between OpenVPN and IKEv2, but Android users can only use OpenVPN.

The availability of special servers is also different between the apps. You can access double VPN, obfuscated, P2P and dedicated IP servers on the Android app, but only get P2P and Onion over VPN on iOS.

Browser extensions

Both ExpressVPN and NordVPN offer dedicated Chrome and Firefox browser extensions. However, the extensions will only encrypt the traffic that passes through the browser while everything else remains untouched. It works similarly to the split tunneling feature.

For ExpressVPN, you only need to install the add-on directly on your browser and click the extension button to get started. This is an easy way for a quick security fix when using public WiFi.

NordVPN allows you to use the browser extensions on either the mobile or desktop apps. This is a unique feature as there is no other provider that lets you use the extension on mobile.

While some vendors limit the number of servers you can access with the browser extensions, NordVPN does not. It gives you access to its entire server network in all the countries.

The provider also offers the Block WebRTC feature for additional leak protection. It is automatically enabled and safeguards you from unintended leaks that might expose your IP address.

Moreover, NordVPN encrypts your traffic with Transport Layer Security (TLS) to completely secure your connections even when you visit sites without HTTP protection.

Router apps

Both ExpressVPN and NordVPN are compatible with a wide range of routers. Installing the VPN app on your router will enable you to cover your entire network. These include devices that don’t usually support VPNs like smart TVs, gaming consoles, etc.

There are a few and straightforward steps you will need to follow to configure the ExpressVPN app on your router. Go to the official website and choose the specific router from the drop-down menu to get a guide on how to get started.

It is also straightforward to install the NordVPN app on your router. Head over to its official website under the tutorial section, select the specific router, and follow the easy tutorial.

13. Payment and refunds

Both VPN services support multiple payment methods and offer a substantial refund policy. However, ExpressVPN is a winner as it accepts more variety of payment options.

 ExpressVPNNordVPN
PayPalYesNo
CryptocurrenciesBitcoinBitcoin, Ethereum and Ripple
MintYesNo
Major Credit Cards (Visa, American Express, Mastercard and more)YesYes
Other popular payment systemsAliPay, Discover, Diners Club, JCB, Union Pay and moreGoogle Pay, Discover, Apple Pay, Union Pay, AliPay and more

There are significant differences that you should know, especially if you want 100% anonymity. While ExpressVPN accepts payments through Mint, NordVPN does not. This is a private payment method as it does not require you to provide any personal information.

Conversely, NordVPN accepts more cryptocurrencies such as Ripple, Bitcoin and Ethereum while ExpressVPN only supports Bitcoin.

Money-back guarantee

Both NordVPN and ExpressVPN offer a generous money-back guarantee of 30 days. You can take advantage of the policy to test the services risk-free before taking a long-term subscription.

Getting your refund from both VPNs is a walk in the park. All you will need to do is to get in touch with customer support through the live chat. They will process your request and refund your money within a few days.

The only issue with NordVPN is that the customer representative may try to compel you to stay. This can be not very reassuring, but once you explain, they will process your request quickly. With ExpressVPN, you won’t be asked any questions, and you will get your money within 3-4 days.

We noticed that the refund policy might be a little complicated if you buy your subscription through virtual stores like the Apple App Store. Since the third party will be handling the refunds, it will take weeks or more before getting your money. That is why we recommend you to purchase the plans directly through the provider’s official website.

14. Customer support

NordVPN and ExpresVPN have reliable customer support. The representatives are knowledgeable and will respond to your problems promptly through live chat. You can also use the email option if you want to ask a detailed question.

It would be very disappointing to buy a subscription yet you cannot get help when you face a problem. Both vendors provide many other resources to help you solve common issues without involving customer support. For instance, you will get an FAQ section, how-to pages, and educational blogs addressing various issues.

Customer agents’ knowledgeability

Customer agents of both VPNs looked very knowledgeable to us as they answered all our questions correctly.

 QuestionsResponse timeOutcome
ExpressVPNDoes ExpressVPN offer split tunneling on Android devices?15 minutesSolved
How does the TrustedServer help to unblock geo-blocked content?8 minutesSolved
NordVPNDo you have P2P servers for torrenting?10 minutesSolved
Can I use CyberSec on iOS devices?20 minutesSolved

There is nothing worse than a customer service agent who does not answer your questions correctly.

You can always contact customer service if you have streaming issues, need clarification on features, or ask for a refund. Agents of both companies will answer your questions fast and accurately.

The winner

So, who wins between ExpressVPN and NordVPN? Based on our testing and the categories we used, ExpressVPN is a winner by a small margin. It is better for streaming, gaming, and torrenting as it offers faster speeds.

However, this does not mean that NordVPN is a weak contender. In fact, it is more affordable and is good at unblocking geo-restricted content.

Our ExpressVPN vs NordVPN comparison shows that both services are formidable, so your choice will mainly depend on your specific needs. If you are still unsure, you should test both services risk-free with the 30-days money-back guarantee. Once you have done testing, you’ll only need to request a refund, which you will get within a few days.

ExpressVPN and NordVPN comparison FAQs

Can I use both ExpressVPN and NordVPN for free?
Between ExpressVPN and NordVPN, which is best for streaming Netflix?
Will ExpressVPN and NordVPN slow my internet speed?
Is it wrong to leave the VPN on all the time?
Will my ISP block my VPN usage?
How many devices do ExpressVPN and NordVPN support?
What is the benefit of a VPN?
Between ExpressVPN and NordVPN, which works better with a game console?
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About the author

Ruheni Mathenge
Ruheni Mathenge

Tech researcher and writer with a passion for cybersecurity. Alex is a strong advocate of digital freedom and online privacy.

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