When you use a public Wi-Fi network, say at your local coffee shop or at an airport when you travel, you never know who else might have access to the same network that can possibly monitor your online activities and steal your sensitive information. Therefore, it always pays to use a reliable Virtual Private Network (VPN) to secure your online presence.
ExpressVPN has long remained one of the most versatile VPN service providers in the market. Claiming to be “the world’s leading VPN provider”, ExpressVPN backs it up with a 30-day money-back guarantee, while most of the other service providers offer only 7 days as standard. Does the VPN service live up to its claim? Let’s find out.
Is My Privacy Protected with ExpressVPN?
Though ExpressVPN mentions that it doesn’t collect connection logs as well, it does, however, collect littlest information about how you use their services, and this information typically includes: amount of data transferred in a day, VPN server location choice, dates of VPN service connection, etc. The company collects this minimal information for various reasons like: rectifying technical issues with the app, finding and fixing network issues, and providing proper technical support to users. Even the minimal amount of information collected for these purposes is not associated with users’ sensitive data.
To further improve privacy, ExpressVPN offers a VPN kill switch, which it calls Network Lock, and this feature is available for Mac, Windows, Linux, and also the ExpressVPN app. This kill switch protects your online privacy by automatically stopping your device from accessing the internet, during times when the VPN gets disconnected unexpectedly, thus preventing your online traffic from getting exposed.
Furthermore, ExpressVPN excels in providing complete anonymity and enables geo-spoofing, allowing you to access your favorite content from anywhere around the world, without being noticed by government agencies and other third parties. The level of anonymity provided by this VPN service is one of the reasons why it remains a favorite among frequent travelers.
How Much is ExpressVPN? Is There a Free Trial?
As you can see, ExpressVPN offers three different pricing plans for its users: $12.95 for a monthly plan, $9.99 for a semi-annual plan, and $8.32 for an annual plan. The VPN service does not offer a free trial, except for certain mobile devices (1 day for Android app and 7 days for iOS app), like most other services do; however, it does offer a 30-day money-back guarantee, during which time you can cancel your subscription without any questions asked, if you are not satisfied with the provider’s features and services.
The pricing, when compared to other leading VPN service providers like Hotspot Shield and CyberGhost, is quite high. However, we do think that it is worth paying for its amazing features and benefits.
ExpressVPN supports a wide range of payment methods, from major credit cards, like Visa, MasterCard, Visa Electron, JCB, etc., to other payment options like Bitcoin, PayPal, WebMoney, UnionPay, and more. This makes it easy for people with different payment preferences to access the service.
ExpressVPN Speed Test
When it comes to speed test results, ExpressVPN did a good job, despite a few inconsistencies every now and then. Even on international connections, the VPN offers extraordinary download speeds, and it also allows P2P on all VPN servers. With unlimited bandwidth and server switches, you can play online games and watch high quality video content seamlessly, without any lag whatsoever. As mentioned before, you might face some inconsistencies in the VPN’s speed; however, this can be caused by a variety of reasons, including your internet service provider.
The connection speed of ExpressVPN is certainly above average, and the service provider’s DNS lookup time is relatively fast as well. In simple words, DNS lookup time refers to the time it takes for a web page to load.
Overall, ExpressVPN would be an amazing choice for torrenting, streaming videos, playing high speed games, and to perform various other activities online, without facing speed-related issues.
How is Customer Service at ExpressVPN?
ExpressVPN is one of those VPN services that are user-friendly in all aspects. As a result, the need for constant or frequent customer support is less likely. However, the company does offer 24/7 customer support via live chat and email to help you with any queries you might have. The company’s customer service representatives are highly knowledgeable, friendly, professional, and also prompt in their answers, even if your questions are non-technical.
In addition to these two customer support options, you can also access the company’s Troubleshooting Guides, FAQs, and ExpressVPN Setup Instructions to have your doubts cleared. Clearly, what’s missing in their customer service options is a phone number. You can also contact their customer support team on social media.
Without a doubt, the level of customer service offered by ExpressVPN is top notch, on par, if not better than any other leading VPN service provider.
Let’s start with the different VPN protocols supported by the VPN service. ExpressVPN supports almost all VPN protocols, such as PPTP, SSTP, OpenVPN over UDP, OpenVPN over TCP, and L2TP/IPsec. Though, by default, the service will automatically choose the most beneficial protocol, which you can change manually. However, OpenVPN is always considered to be the best protocol option.
Signing up with the service and installing the app is a breeze. As a matter of fact, ExpressVPN has one of the easiest and most user-friendly sign-up and installation processes.
ExpressVPN has servers located in 94 different countries across the world, with 148 individual server locations. As a result, the service offers unlimited server switches. It enables geo-spoofing, with which you can access your favorite content from wherever you are, regardless of geographic restrictions or censorships, all while remaining anonymous.
Additionally, some of the other basic features offered by ExpressVPN are:
- VPN split tunneling.
- 24/7 live chat and email support.
- Apps for Windows, Linux, iOS, Android, and routers.
- Built-in speed test feature, to help you connect with the fastest VPN server location compatible for your network.
It doesn’t end there – ExpressVPN offers extraordinary security features as well. For instance, the VPN service provider has introduced a .onion site (you’ll need a Tor browser to reach that one), the aim of which is to enable users to circumvent censorships and access the VPN’s website in order to sign up for the service. This is actually a problem faced by internet users all over the world, and this particular security feature from ExpressVPN acts as the perfect solution for the same. Despite these amazing features, the fact that the VPN service allows only 3 simultaneous connections, regardless of the platform, while many of its competitors allow 5 or 6, is quite disappointing.
To make its offerings well-rounded, ExpressVPN also offers some educational features, which include internet privacy guides, an official blog with discussions on various important topics, and stream sports guides as well.
Is ExpressVPN Safe?
When it comes to security, ExpressVPN, similar to any other leading VPN service, encrypts your traffic to make it impossible for third parties to access or monitor your online activities. The encryption standard used by ExpressVPN is AES-256, which actually is the level of encryption used by the American government. In fact, the service’s OpenVPN encryption is considered to be one of the strongest in the space today. Though this level of strength is known to affect the performance of a VPN service, ExpressVPN has actually managed to still deliver exceptional performance, which is where it stands apart from the rest of the competition.
A major concern that many VPN users have in terms of security is often related to bugs, leaks, and other issues with their apps. Fortunately, with ExpressVPN, you are not likely to face bugs, WebRTC leaks, DNS leaks, or even any sorts of vulnerabilities with your apps. The company has made sure that its apps are of high quality and protect users’ privacy and security at all times.
ExpressVPN is definitely a high quality, well-rounded, and refined VPN service. Its easy-to-use software, user-friendly interface, amazing list of features, exceptional customer service, and of course, the no-questions-asked 30-day money-back policy together make this service one of the leading and most widely preferred VPN service providers in the world. Yes, there are some very minor issues, like the lack of proper contact information, quite expensive, and inconsistent speeds; nevertheless, this is one VPN service with huge bang for your buck.