I was curious to put together this ExpressVPN review as I just couldn’t believe the hype around it.
Most “comparison” sites claim them to be fast, secure and fully anonymous.
But I was wondering…
Is it really as fast and secure as promised? Can I use it for torrenting and streaming Netflix?
Does it really cost that much or is there a cheaper way to get it?
These are just some of the questions I answer in this review.
Ready? Let’s get started…
ExpressVPN General Info
|OVERALL RANK:||#1st out of 35 VPNs|
|LOG FILES:||Strict No Logging|
|ENCRYPTION:||OpenVPN, IPSec & IKEv2|
|JURISDICTION:||British Virgin Islands|
1. Located in Safe Jurisdiction: British Virgin Islands
Founded in 2009, ExpressVPN International Ltd is located in the sun-kissed and (almost) the tax-free British Virgin Islands.
The fact that they located in a tax haven and have almost no information regarding their founders or employees can raise a few red flags for the cautious consumer.
However, ExpressVPN’s secrecy should not be a cause for alarm.
Due to the very nature of their services, most VPN companies go to great lengths to hide their identities and impede unwanted investigations.
With the current landscape of data security becoming more tumultuous by the day, it is almost a requirement for VPN providers to limit the accessibility of their more private information.
2. Strict No Logging Policy
Keep in mind that vast of majority of VPN providers try to explain in their TOS that they don’t keep log files, but we’ve seen some VPN services that have VERY questionable logging policy (hint: PureVPN & F-Secure Freedome).
Luckily, ExpressVPN isn’t that suspicious at all…
ExpressVPN also operates under a rather stringent “No Logging” policy.
Basically, this means that they do not track or store your personal data whenever you are using their services. From the second that you log onto your ExpressVPN server, your information (or at least most of it) is encrypted and hidden from hackers, government agencies, and yes, even ExpressVPN themselves.
- Apps and app versions successfully activated
- Dates (not times) when connected to the VPN service
- Choice of VPN server location
- Total amount (in MB) of data transferred per day
And after reviewing dozens of other VPNs, I have found that this is a pretty standard practice that is actually necessary to ensure an optimal user experience.
3. Lots of Servers and Privacy Features
- Anonymous IP: Yes
- Kill-Switch: Yes
- Netflix compatibility: Yes
- P2P servers
- 3 simultaneous connections
- 1500+ servers
- 94 countries (last verified on 1st of May, 2018)
Where ExpressVPN really shines is in their wide selection of servers.
With over 1,500 servers operating in 94 countries across 148 different cities (and counting), ExpressVPN is rivaled only by NordVPN, PIA and TorGuard in terms of the sheer volume of servers they offer.
If there is a server you need, chances are, ExpressVPN has got it.
For anyone using location-specification specific activities (like gambling), ExpressVPN also offers a very handy Kill Switch that will automatically kill whatever software or websites you were using in the event that your network connection is lost.
Meaning that even when you’ve lost your protection, you are still protected.
Works on Multiple Devices
Their services are supported on:
- Linux (best UI in the industry)
- iPhone and iPad
- Different routers
- Different web browsers
While I am sure there is some device out there that remains unsupported, you would be hard-pressed to find it.
4. Speed Test: One of The Fastest VPNs
Probably the most important strength that ExpressVPN has is their fast upload and download speeds.
Without VPN, we had the following results:
With a 100 Mbps connection, we’re able to get a download speed of 83.15 Mbps which makes them one of the fastest VPNs we’ve reviewed till date.
Of the 70+ of VPN providers that I have tested, only a few offer upload and download speeds comparable to ExpressVPN’s (such as PIA & Private Tunnel, but they lack in every other aspect).
See the complete results yourself:
US Server (New York)
- Ping: 110ms / Download: 60.04 Mbps / Upload: 30.41 Mbps
EU Server (Amsterdam)
- Ping: 40ms / Download: 83.15 Mbps / Upload: 25.18 Mbps
Asia Server (Hong Kong)
- Ping: 292ms / Download: 30.26 Mbps / Upload: 12.46 Mbps
Always take speed testing with a grain of salt because it relies on too many variables, such as your physical location, your computer specs, your Internet connection etc.
But since I compare VPNs with the same method (same computer & internet connection), I can be pretty confident that they’re one of the fastest.
5. Strong Encryption (AES-256) + OpenVPN
In order to ensure that their client’s data is protected at the highest levels, ExpressVPN uses a strong encryption… Like a super strong encryption.
Known as Advanced Encryption Standard or AES, the 256-bit cipher that ExpressVPN utilizes all but eliminates the possibility of a brute force attack( and most other attacks for that matter).
I won’t bore you with all of the jargon and technical details about the AES 256 key that is used to protect your internet experience, but I will suffice it to say this:
When the CIA or FBI decides that they want to protect the transmission of sensitive data, they use an AES-256 encryption.
If security is one of your primary concerns, you can rest soundly knowing that ExpressVPN is not at risk of being compromised anytime soon.
VPN protocols are the method that your device uses to connect to a VPN server. While most users will only need the default “OpenVPN”, ExpressVPN also supports SSTP, L2Tp/IPsec, and PPTP protocols.
For users with more technical requirements, this is a great feature to have because it allows you to establish a connection that is tailored to meet your specific needs (typically, speed vs. security).
By de-jargonizing everything I wrote above, I can safely say that yes, ExpressVPN is secure and safe VPN.
6. ExpressVPN Allows Torrenting
This is a huge plus for many users.
While other companies like TunnelBear have officially stated that they do not allow torrenting, ExpressVPN has made no such statements.
Although I was unable to find an example where ExpressVPN blatantly condoned torrenting, you don’t have to read far between the lines to realize that, at the very least, they aren’t opposed to it.
Everything about their service, from the military-grade encryption to the unlimited bandwidth and admirable download times scream “Torrent Friendly”.
7. Compatible with Netflix
As Netflix’s security protocols and procedures continue to evolve, it is becoming increasingly rare to find VPN providers with Netflix compatibility.
After setting up my service with ExpressVPN, the first (and clearly most important) thing that I wanted to find out was whether or not their Netflix compatibility worked as advertised. Much to my surprise (and delight), I was presented with a queue of films and TV shows that was wildly different from my regularly scheduled programming.
It should be noted that not all servers are compatible with Netflix and you will probably run into a few proxy errors when trying to stream Netflix from non-U.S. servers.
There servers worked perfectly fine for bypassing Netflix:
- USA (NY)
- Canada (Toronto)
- UK (London)
8. 24/7 Live Customer Support
In an industry that suffers from notoriously bad customer service, ExpressVPN’s 24/7 live support is one of its biggest selling points. Unlike many providers who rely on outdated contact forms and laggy email chains, ExpressVPN boasts a 24/7 365 live chat feature that has been consistently rated one of the best in the business.
But, for whatever reason, ExpressVPN decided that it would be beneficial to continue offering the more traditional contact forms and support emails. So it’s important to note that if you do run into any issues when you opt for one of these archaic methods, ExpressVPN will be quick to redirect you to their live support team (as they do in the following correspondence).
9. TOR Compatibility
The Orion Router or TOR is a network designed for one thing and one thing only.
When using TOR, your traffic information is encrypted across multiple servers and your data is relayed so that it is difficult (bordering on impossible) to track your actual location.
If you are extremely concerned about your personal security, ExpressVPN allows you to combine the TOR networks on top of your existing VPN in order to maximize your privacy and all but eliminate vulnerabilities in your data’s security.
In countries with Draconian censorship laws, this added layer of security can (literally) be a lifesaver.
To access the TOR network, simply use their official browser on a Windows, Mac OS, Linux, or Android device then launch your connection using the following address: http://expressobutiolem.onion
10. No IP or DNS leaks found
Last, but not least, we also tested ExpressVPN towards multiple DNS, WebRTC and IP leaks.
Luckily, we couldn’t find any (5 different sites tested).
I also uploaded their installer file to VirusTotal.com which indicated no viruses found.
1. Only 3 Devices Can be Connected Simultaneously
If there is one other complaint I had about ExpressVPN it is that they only allow you to simultaneously use their services on three devices.
While it’s unlikely that this is an issue for users who are only interested in personal security, the limit can become frustrating whenever you are trying to ensure the security of your entire family’s data and devices.
This is especially bothersome when you compare ExpressVPN’s device limit to those of other companies who consistently offer 5-7 simultaneous connections.
While it’s far from a deal breaker, it is an issue that I would like to see resolved sooner rather than later.
2. Not Very Transparent Company
Similarly to NordVPN, ExpressVPN remains pretty anonymous company. There are no visible phone numbers nor business contacts on the website, yet they serve millions of customers.
However, remaining anonymous in the VPN business is a pretty common thing. Businesses tend to do that because of the different laws and their motive to protect their customer’s data.
ExpressVPN Pricing, Plans & Facts
When a company boasts as many features and perks as ExpressVPN, it shouldn’t shock you to find out that they charge a premium price for their services.
With their packages going as high as $12.95/month, ExpressVPN is far from a “budget service” (although every plan comes with a 30-day money back guarantee)
Here’s how the pricing plans break down.
Month-to-Month Plan: $12.95 per month
6 Months Plan: $9.99/month (billed $59.95 every six months)
12-Months Plan: $8.32/Month (Billed $99.95 every 12 months)
However, if you are willing to keep a watchful eye on their website, you can occasionally find great sales that reduce the total cost to $6.67/month or lower.
This might seem expensive to some of you, especially when you compare the cost of ExpressVPN to some free VPN services.
But it’s important to remember that, as the old adage goes, “You get what you pay for”.
And there are no exceptions to this rule when it comes to VPN providers.
- No logging: Yes.
- Ease of the VPN software: Very beginner friendly and simple.
- Hidden fees & clauses: None found.
- Upsells: No upsells.
- Instant access after payment: Yes.
- DNS leaks: DNS Leak Protection feature (free).
- Jurisdiction: British Virgin Islands.
- Protocols: OpenVPN, IPSec, PPTP & L2TP.
- Kill-switch: Yes.
- P2P servers: Yes
Do I Recommend ExpressVPN?
Yes, I do.
They offer a fantastic service that is filled with the wide array of features sure to delight both novice and expert web-surfers alike.
They keep you fully anonymous, safe and secure.
And with such a large pool of servers (1500+) to choose from and an effective team of customer service agents at your disposal, I feel that you get what you pay for – which is a lot!
It’s fast, safe and secure. Hands down, my experience with this VPN was solid, hence I recommend this.
P.S. I’m always interested in user-reviews so if you’ve used ExpressVPN before, don’t hesitate to leave your review below. If your experience matched mine, cool. If it didn’t, that’s fine too!
Add your own review:
19 user reviews for ExpressVPN
I am very impressed with the service. Had PIA for a year and although the service was ok, it was nothing close to Express. Tried Nord for a month after using Express for a month earlier as many were claiming Nord was much better than Express, but I found I was much more comfortable with the Express VPN. No privacy issues up to this point and it is by far the fastest I have found where the VPN is concerned. It’s a total package.
Best I've found, nice features.
This is the best VPN that I’ve used. Good speeds, quick to connect, and excellent & very quick customer service when I’ve had questions. I often use the VPN to access TV and media from other countries, and when the media suppliers learn of the VPN connection the IP gets blacklisted. ExpressVPN tries to keep up by changing IPs but it’s sometimes a cat-and-mouse game to find one that works to stream media. I like the preference settings that lets me include or exclude certain apps from going through the VPN. And – though I never use it – they allow torrenting should I ever need it. One issue is that when connected to the service, Google often directs me to their Arabic UAE site even though my real & VPN regions are nowhere near there…
Fast Servers #1 Reason
I’ve used several VPN’s including NordVPN which was terribly slow in comparison to ExpressVPN. So far right out of the gate this thing has worked perfectly. The fast servers is my #1 reason for using it. What good is a VPN if it slows your internet connection to a crawl? It is pricey, but I did get in on the 15 month deal. NordVPN is cheaper and if you are willing to deal with the speed of that service, which I was not it’s probably okay. I like the kill switch and even though I wish there was more than 3 simultaneous connections I’ve learned to deal with that. I can see if you have a family that this would be an issue though. By the way they have GREAT customer service. I initially signed up for the month to month plan because I was not really sure. I contacted them and got a response and a solution within 2 hours. I highly recommend ExpressVPN.
Doesn't work on Windows XP
I spent hours trying to make their software work on a Win XP x32 PC that i need to keep legacy software running and wanted sme protection with a VPN. I spent hours trying to get their software to work but no success. The best their online chat support could do was to advise rebooting and another attempt at reinstall. No technical suggestions. Deciding to give up they then said a refund of my payment made hours earlier would take 7 to 10 days.
Privacy, yes but...
Good overall review, however; I do think you missed the mark for those interested in true online anonymity, that is how do I pay for the service in a way that cannot be tracked back to the payee. Many sites will allow payment with bitcoin or gift cards that can be bought with cash. I think it would have been helpful to some people to include that information.
no problems yet
My experience with ExpressVPN has been really great so far as I have encountered no problems yet.
The VPN does all the things I want it to do for instance, it doesn’t keep logs, there are a lot of locations to choose from and the speed is great. There’s only one thing I don’t really like with this VPN is that it has been blacklisted on many sites and it has a pretty high spam risk score on many websites.
A bit pricy, but worth the money.
Although one of the more expensive options, Express VPN has served me well on regular trips into China, much more reliable uptimes than other popular options which often get blocked by the country wide firewall. It also maintains a good number of servers worldwide help minimise ping and with upload and download speeds.
Worth noting that the best servers are usually hidden or not the recommended ones. Also keep an eye on your subscription, the service automatically renews, so if you don’t need it for a month or two untick auto renew in settings. My experience with the customer service has also been great via. their web chat.
Great but high price.
Currently using ExpressVPN as my daily driver to keep my connection secure and to keep my IP safe from DDoS attacks.
I have had no downtime in the 3 months I’ve used it and only some lag spikes near the evening (lasted about 2 minutes).
The quality you get is absolutely excellent and the speed is perfect for gaming and uploading aswell, the only downside is that it is a bit more expensive than other VPN’s but you get great quality in exchange.
The support is excellent aswell and they answer my questions usually within 24 hours.
As much as ExpressVPN is excellent for speed and when connected security where I am using it I have had nothing but trouble.
Although we have had several chats Express seems to be at a loss on how to overcome the ISP’s. I am one of a number of users here that struggle. Maybe in general Express is great. But I feel they are unable to deal with those places that are more difficult.
ExpressVPN in the World of Streaming Television
I started using ExpressVPN about a year ago when I decided to cut the cord from cable and switch to streaming television exclusively. I decided to go with Kodi, which is open source streaming software. I quickly found out that many of the shows I wanted to watch were IP blocked, and I didn’t reside in the country they serviced.
So, off I went looking for a VPN provider so I wouldn’t be geo blocked due to my IP address. After reviewing many of the more popular services, I decided to go with ExpressVPN based on the price and the 24/7 service, as well as the vast selection of countries to choose from.
They had a very simple app to download from the Google Play store, which I needed because I am not the most tech savvy person. After downloading the app, all I had to do was click a green button on it and instantly my IP was changed! It was incredibly easy to change my IP location to virtually any country in the world with just the click of the very simply stated “choose location” button right next to the button to turn the service on. When I went looking to see what other locations they had, the interface was broken down by continents, each with many, many countries in its list and many different IP addresses to choose from within each country
After some time of using it, I noticed the connections were always solid with no drops and amazing speeds. I often found ExpressVPN provided an even more solid connection than my own home connection most of the time!
When I needed technical help setting up an IP address on a smart tv, customer service was there within a minute and walked me through each step, and waited to make sure I had everything up and running. The customer service is stellar, and made me very impressed with the company as a whole
I was so impressed with the service that I changed my monthly plan, which was 12.95 per month, to pay for a year outright and was taken down to 8.32 per month for the service! For the options it provides, the speeds and quality, and the outstanding customer service, it’s the best 100 dollars a year I’ve spent
Reliable for over a year
I have used ExpressVPN for over a year and I have no plans on changing. I have them on my MAC and Android, and its very easy to use. I hardly notice a difference in speed when browsing and use use it for everything.
I have emailed them twice with problems and they have got back to me within 24 hours to fix those problems, in 1 email. A bonus is they have a website on the DeepWeb and also take bitcoin as payment, for people who want to stay completely anonymous! I would say they are a little more on the expensive side compared to their competitors, but I will be sticking to them. They have over 90 countries for you to connect to, which is a little crazy as I only use the same 3.
I would recommend them for their speed, uptime, choice and customer service. 9/10.
Expensive but very good
ExpressVPN is a good solution for VPN, it is easy to set up, you just download some programs on your devices and you start serving the internet right away. The only issue that I have is when I am at home and I want to connect to my Chromecast, the app on my Android telephone might have been connected to a server, what prevents my mobile to connect to the chrome cast.
The solution to connect to the VPN with your router is good, only the set up is a bit technical. But there is a excellent tutorial on the website. The only issue I have with ExpressVPN is the price: 99 dollars for 1 year. But what you pay is what you get.
What can I say about expressvpn..
I have been using ExpressVPN for about 6 months. It has been an amazing journey so far, they have really fast connections and super user-friendly UI. They have a wide variety of countries to choose from, but I mostly use USA so I can stream on Netflix.
They are online all the time, which means you will never be in a position that you need it, and you will not have it.
I started using ExpressVPN just few months ago and I have no complaints about it.
Yes, it’s slightly higher prices then the other VPNs, but I managed to opt in for 15 months (at a slightly cheaper cost).
I’m using it on both iOS and Windows – pretty smooth and flawless.
I landed on ExpressVPN, because I was looking for a good VPN provider for myself to stay anonymous online. I was looking around and once a window popped with David’s face on it. I asked several questions from him and he showed me around their website and how to install ExpressVPN. Once installed I started tried it out and was amazed how fast it is. I have a couple of friends who use VPNs, but their download speed always shrinks when they connect themselves to another server.
I have nothing but good words for this company. They are fast and reliable. When I have some questions I just visit ExpressVPN and they answer all my questions fast.
A definite must, if you want to protect your privacy.
Good but overpriced
It’s usually good, but most times it doesn’t justify their price. The internet speed in China is nothing to write home about on top of that the government intentionally slows down foreign websites, if it doesn’t restrict access to them. So a VPN is a must for me. I bought a year’s subscription of ExpressVPN about 9 months ago for $100/year.
I read it was the best VPN service for China on this website and many others. I get 3MB/S download speed if the network is great, as I said earlier the internet here is nothing special. I’m planning on trying NordVPN when my subscription ends. Some of my friends use it. It seems as fast and reliable as ExpressVPN and it’s a little cheaper.
ExpressVPN is a solid product – especially when you need a smooth experience. I used free VPNs in the past (such as Betternet & Tunnelbear), but they’re slow. Thus I decided to invest some money into VPN software.
I debated long between PIA & ExpressVPN, but eventually went for the latter.
Problem after problem
I’ve used several of the VPN’s listed since I came to China a year and a half ago, but sadly the most memorable experience I had was using Express VPN, a paying subscription that I first used, with all sorts of problems.
After a month, it became harder and harder to get the VPN working and connecting, then one night I did, and instantly my laptop went blue screen. Twice! I spent the next week getting back basic functions of my computer. I can’t blame Express VPN for the crashes, but it was awfully suspicious.
Perfect for personal use
Started using ExpressVPN in december 2014 and I’ve never looked back.
Their servers are fast and I really think they care for my anonymity. The customer support has always been friendly and quick when I’ve had questions regarding their product. They might cost a bit more than the cheapest providers, but I think they’re worth every penny.