NordVPN vs ExpressVPN - A side-by-side comparison

If you have done your research and are nearing a decision about what VPN is best for you, this comparison guide might be exactly what you need. Both NordVPN and ExpressVPN are formidable VPNs that have proven they can provide a reliable and trustworthy service.

There is no doubt that these VPN providers are at the top of their game, and that choosing either one of them will give you a fantastic VPN experience. But there are some minor differences between the two services that might sway your decision one way or the other. 

In this article, we have pinpointed the primary differences for you so that you can finalize your decision and get the VPN service that is best for you.

Table of contents

Which is cheaper?

Which is faster?

Which is better for Netflix?

Which is better for torrenting?

Which offers better customer support?

Which has more features?

Which has more servers?

Which is easier to use?

Which offers better privacy & security?


Which is cheaper?

Result: NordVPN wins!

NordVPN is 63% cheaper.

ExpressNord
1-Month Plan: $12.95 1-Month Plan: $11.95
6-Month Plan: $9.99 per month 6-Month Plan: Not available
1-Year Plan:  $8.32 per month 1-Year Plan: $6.99 per month
2-Year Plan: None 2-Year Plan: $3.99 per month 
3-Year Plan: None  3-Year Plan: $2.99 per month

NordVPN starts at just $2.99 per month, which is ludicrously cheap. To qualify for that bargain price, you will need to commit to a three-year subscription. However, doing so is an extremely good idea.

A subscription to ExpressVPN starts at $8.32 per month, which is almost triple what Nord charges. That ExpressVPN subscription plan is for a single year, and it costs a total of $99.95 which must be paid annually. NordVPN, on the other hand, costs $107 in total - billed once every three years. That means that for just 7 dollars more you get two extra years of VPN usage with NordVPN. 

Get NordVPN


Which VPN is faster?

Result: ExpressVPN wins!

ExpressVPN is 21% faster than NordVPN.

ExpressNord
Download speed: 82 Mbps Download speed: 68 Mbps

Having lightning-fast connection speeds is essential if you want a VPN for downloading or streaming in HD. We test all major VPNs 3 times a day, 7 days a week using our custom-built speed testing platform.

The good news is that both NordVPN and ExpressVPN are in the top half of the fastest VPNs in the world. However, on average, ExpressVPN comes out just in front. 

Get ExpressVPN


Which is better for Netflix?

Result: Draw

Both providers are capable of unlocking Netflix.

ExpressNord
 Netflix US: Yes Netflix US: Yes
 BBC iPlayer: Yes BBC iPlayer: Yes

Both services have servers located in the US that provide access to the largest Netflix catalog on earth. So if you want to watch more Netflix - you can opt for either service and you will be successful. 

Nord does have the edge when it comes to unlocking regional libraries, so if you are looking to unlock other Netflix catalogs, NordVPN might be the better option.


Which is better for torrenting?

Result: Draw

Both NordVPN and ExpressVPN permit downloading via P2P.

ExpressNord
 Yes - allows torrenting Yes - allows torrenting

NordVPN specifically mentions torrenting and has servers that are labeled for P2P. ExpressVPN opts not to mention it at all and permits torrenting on all servers.  

Neither service provides port forwarding.


Which offers better customer support?

Result: Draw

Both providers offer excellent 24/7 support.

ExpressNord
 Live chat: 24/7Live chat: 24/7 
 Email support: 24/7Email support: 24/7
 FAQs: YesFAQs: Yes
 Guides: YesGuides: Yes

NordVPN won the ProPrivacy 2019 Customer Service Awards, but the gap between these two providers has become much narrower in recent months. ExpressVPN and NordVPN have both proven themselves to be excellent at customer support. Not only do they have guides, blogs, and FAQs on their websites - but they also provide responsive live chat services that can help you to solve any problem. 


Which has more features?

Result: NordVPN wins!

NordVPN has a larger set of features including some rare ones that few VPNs provide.

ExpressNord
No logsNo logs
Money-back guaranteeMoney-back guarantee
DNS leak protectionDNS leak protection
OpenVPN encryptionOpenVPN encryption
KillswitchKillswitch
Obfuscated serversObfuscated servers
Browser extensionsBrowser extensions
Apps for all platformsApps for all platforms
Simultaneous connections: 3Simultaneous connections: 6
Split tunnelingDouble-hop encryption
N/A VPN into Tor

While both ExpressVPN and NordVPN share important features, NordVPN has some unusual features such as double-hop encryption and VPN into Tor. It also permits users to connect to the service with 6 devices - as opposed to just 3 with ExpressVPN.

Get NordVPN


Which has more servers?

Result: ExpressVPN wins!

ExpressVPN provides servers in a whopping 94 countries, vs. 62 for Nord.

ExpressNord
 94 countries 62 countries

To be fair both have servers in all the most popular locations, so the added servers that ExpressVPN provides will probably only be of interest to extremely specific users. Is that is you: opt for ExpressVPN!

Get ExpressVPN


Which is easier to use?

Result: Draw

Both NordVPN and ExpressVPN have custom VPN apps that are extremely easy to use.

ExpressNord
Windows: YesWindows: Yes
macOS: YesmacOS: Yes 
Android: YesAndroid: Yes
iOS: YesiOS: Yes
Chrome: YesChrome: Yes
Firefox: YesFirefox: Yes

When it comes to user experience both these services have fantastic VPN software for all platforms. Both are easy to navigate and altering the settings is easy. We call it a draw.


Which is better for privacy and security?

Result: Draw

ExpressVPN and NordVPN both offer indsutry-leading security and privacy.

ExpressNord
 Cipher: AES-256-CBC  Cipher: AES-256-CBC 
 Handshake: RSA-3072  Handshake: RSA-2048 
 Auth: HMAC SHA-256  Auth: HMAC SHA-256 
 PFS: Yes PFS: Yes

Both of these services have strong enough encryption to protect your data for a long time into the future (future-proof).

Written by: Ray Walsh

Digital privacy expert with 5 years experience testing and reviewing VPNs. He's been quoted in The Express, The Times, The Washington Post, The Register, CNET & many more. Ray is currently rated #4 VPN and #3 internet privacy authority by Agilience.com.

5 Comments

  1. Arley Green

    on November 15, 2019
    Reply

    NordVPN 6.25 Error Do I turn off the update ?

    1. Douglas Crawford replied to Arley Green

      on November 15, 2019
      Reply

      Hi Arley. You should contact NordVPN's 24/7 support for help with this.

  2. Justice

    on November 15, 2019
    Reply

    I asked NordVPN: The update was released on November 6th. As of November 12, the website still has an older version :) NordVPN 6.25 (latest) NordVPN 6.24 https://nordvpn.com/blog/nordvpn-windows-release-notes/ NordVPN's answer: Thank you for your letter. The recent update version 6.25 seems to have some functionality issues for some of our users, that is why we are currently working on a fix pack for this update, which should be available relatively soon. This is the reason we do not update our website with the most recent version of our application and are offering version 6.24. Let us know if you have any other questions. Best Regards, Customer Success Team

  3. Mike

    on August 18, 2019
    Reply

    ExpressVPN has SPLIT TUNNELING. NordVPN doesn't have one.

  4. Doesnmatter

    on August 7, 2019
    Reply

    You did not discuss ad-blocking, tracking and malware protection.

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