review of ExpressVPN | VPN-review

Honost review of ExpressVPN

Brand Rating Port forwarding Keep logs Streaming Kill switch Internet speed Compatible Server country Money back guarantee OpenVPN support DNS server Router support Free trial/version
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Do you want to feel safe and secure on the Internet? A VPN is for you the answer.
I compared at least six VPN from the better known such as NordVPN to the little one's like HideMyAss.
For one whole month I tried the VPN's: ExpressVPN, NordVPN, PureVPN, HideMyAss, CyberGhost and Surfshark. Read below my 100% HONOST review for ExpressVPN.
In this review I go in depth about multiple key features that a VPN must have.

Hii How are you doing? My name is JP and your #1 source of VPN reviews, courses and discounts. Watch the Youtube video if you don't want to read the whole review.

If you are left with the question: "Why should I even use a VPN?" or "What is a VPN?". Check this page where I explain what a VPN is and why you should use it. Okay that's enough talk lets go to the ExpressVPN review


logo expressVPN

First impression

Okay, I visit the ExpressVPN website. The website of ExpressVPN has a professional layout. On the menu we can see all the menus like a 'Get started' which can come in handy if you are new. The menu products gives us a set of handy tools like: What is my ip?, DNS leak test, WebRTC leak test, Password generator.

On the home page we can see some benefits of ExpressVPN and all the compatible devices. ExpressVPN has shown at the bottom of the page how many servers and locations they have. ExpressVPN has over 160 locaties in 90+ country's. ExpressVPN has unlimited bandwidth which is standard for a paid VPN.


Portforwarding

Your router communicateds between your devices and the rest of the Internet. To communicate a router needs something called a port. A router has around 60.000 ports. The first 1000 ports are dedicated ports for specific functions. The other ports can you assign for whatever you want.

Port forwarding is when you open a port for a specific task where data can traffel through. Port forwarding is usually used by gamers, accessing your pc outside of the LAN or software that needs something different then the dedicated ports. Most of the modern routers support port forwarding.

If the vpn uses a NAT(Network Adress Translation) you can assume that every user gets the same IP. This is suboptimal for the privacy. Fortunately ExpressVPN doesn't use a NAT but ExpressVPN doesn't support port forwarding. If you are a gamer I recommend to take ExpressVPN. ExpressVPN is one of the few VPN's that support portforwarding.


logs ExpressVPN has a NO-LOGS-POLICY

Logs

If you are on the Internet. And you are searching for example Youtube on Google. Your ISP(Internet Service Provider) keeps track of all your data(the website you've visited, IP4, etc).
The ISP can sell this information to advertisers,the government or other third parties. The main goal of a VPN is privacy and anonymity. But what sense does it make if the VPN company keeps logs about you and your online activity. It makes no senses.
That's why ExpressVPN has a STRICT-NO-LOGS-POLICY.

As ExpressVPN claims in there STRICT-NO-LOGS-POLICY: "ExpressVPN does NOT and WILL NEVER log:"

  • IP addresses (source or VPN)
  • Browsing history
  • Traffic destination or metadata
  • DNS queries

ExpressVPN does collect minimal information about the usage of ExpressVPN. This information is collected by ExpressVPN:
  • 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
All the data above can't match a individual person to a specific network. ExpressVPN logs the above data for: Troubleshouting, Provide techinical support, fix network issues.
ExpressVPN will NEVER LOG

  • Activity logs: ExpressVPN will never log which website you visited. ExpressVPN will never log your Internet traffic that includes the destination or the content of the website you have visited. ExpressVPN runs their own private, zero-knowledge DNS
  • Connection logs: ExpressVPN will never log timestamps, session duration, your real IP adress and the IP adress that ExpressVPN use



Streaming

Now lets talk about streaming. Streaming is a important feature for a VPN. The problem is often that when you watch Netflix or a Youtube video that the video needs to buffer most of the time. This is because there is not enough bandwidth. Your ISP can cause this issue for multiple reasons. It can be rushhour or your ISP want you to switch to the competitor of the site you are visiting. You are more waiting for the buffering to finish then you are watching a video. You don't want that don't you?

ExpressVPN claims to have a trottle free VPN. With ExpressVPN you can test within the ExpressVPN software. Below we can see how the speed test of ExpressVPN looks like.

expressVPN speed test As we can see the ExpressVPN speed test which measure: ping, download speed and speed index.

Netflix's recommendation for Internet speed are

SpeedQuality
500 Kbps (0.5Mbps) Minimum quality
1500 kbps (1.5Mbps) Normal quality(no more then 480p)
3000 kbps (3Mbps) SD quality(480p or more)
5000 kbps (5Mbps) HD quality(720p or more)
25000 kbps (25Mpbs) Ultra HD quality(1080p or more)



Compatible

ExpressVPN is compatible with the following devices. You can click on the list items for a detailed tutorial written by ExpressVPN.


What suprises my was when I saw that ExpressVPN is also compatible with Smart TV's and game console's. The list items are clickable for a detailed tutorial written by ExpressVPN.
The following game console's and Smart TV's are compatible with ExpressVPN.




All the tutorial's that ExpressVPN has are detailed with clear instruction's on how to setup your device with ExpressVPN. If the tutorial isn't clear for some reason ExpressVPN has also a Youtube channel with tutorial on how to setup your device.

User interface
When I was done downloading the software it was time for viewing the software. I opened the software en it was very clear for me how the interface works.

In the picture below we can see in the middle that we have a big button. Cleary this is the 'connect button'. When connecting is succeed there comes in the background of the software, a green glow and the button border change's to green and you'll get a notifcation that you are connected.
On the top left side we have a hamburger menu. On the hamburger menu we can choose from multiple options: speed test, options, help & support, 30 days free and a advanced tab.
  • Options: By the option menu we can choose from general, protocol, account and browser. With the options menu you can change the protocol to
    • Automatic
    • UDP (OpenVPN)
    • TCP (OpenVPN)
    • SSTP
    • L2TP (weak security)
    • PPTP (weak security)
    On the general option we can turn the kill switch on/off, Turn on the 'launch on startup' option. The browser options lets us use the browser extension. By accounts section you can see your account information.
  • Speed test: With the speed test we can test how fast the Internet connection is when the VPN is turned on. ExpressVPN measures the latency(in ms), download speed (in Kbps) and the speed index.
  • Help & support: Here you can ask for support. You can write a email inside the ExpressVPN software. You will get a confirmation email when you submit your email. ExpressVPN tries to give a reply in 24 hours
  • 30 days free: ExpressVPN offers a no question asks 30 day guarantee money
  • Advanced: On the Advanced tab we can turn the DNS and IP6 options on/off

ExpressVPN windows client software This is how the interface looks like.


RouterVPN

With ExpressVPN you can protect up to 5 devices with 1 account. Most of the family's has at least 5 devices connected to the internet. fortunate you can setup a VPN on a router. You can see your router as a middle men between your devices and the Internet. All the data(email, browser search and anything else that is connected with the Internet) go through your router. If we protected the router then we protect all the devices that are connected to that same router.

For someone who isn't experienced with Router setup it can be difficult to setup OpenVPN. You can find a detailed explanation on my page How to setup a VPN on a router?. Most of the routers that are compatible with ExpressVPN are routers from ASUS, Netgear, Linksys.


Performance

Performance is important because you don't want to slow down your Internet. Before I connected to ExpressVPN I test my performance. I am wireless connected. Below you can find a table where all the information is clear.

ConnectedDownload speedUpload SpeedPing
Not connected 41.56Mbps 26.78Mbps 19ms
ExpressVPN speed test 37.23Mbps(37.230Kbps) Not available 26ms
External speed test 36.87Mpbs(36.870Kbps) 24.25Mpbs 31ms

As we can see the results are not bad at all. The result may vary but that depends on your ISP and if you are connected with a ethernet cable or wireless. But this gives you a good indication that expressVPN has overall a good performance.


Kill switch

With a kill switch a VPN is much safer. ExpressVPN has a builded in kill switch. But what is a kill switch? A kill switch is a last safety measure. As you know a VPN encrypt your Internet traffic. But what if the VPN stopped for some reason(unstable Internet connection or the firewalls blocks ExpressVPN)? Then comes the kill switch in action. When the VPN 'tunnel' falls away the kill switch blocks all your internet traffic until the 'tunnel' is restored. A kill switch doesn't influence the permance.

The rule in general is always turn on your kill switch. If you deal with sensitive information for your work turning on the kill switch is a MUST. But even if you don't deal with delicate information it is important to turn on your kill switch.

I have my kill switch always turned on because it doesn't reduce my performance. It is just a additional safety measure. You can turn the kill switch on/off in the settings. By default ExpressVPN has turn the kill switch on. ExpressVPN called the kill swith 'network lock'.

ExpressVPN kill switch Here we can see the kill switch option with some other options.


DNS

ExpressVPN has their own DNS server to prevent DNS leaking. DNS is a network protocol that converts IP adresses to domain name's. DNS leaking is a security flaw that allows a DNS request to be revealed to your ISP DSN servers. Despite using a VPN. That's sounds pretty crazy right?

Here are some facts about the ExpressVPN DNS servers:

  • ExpressVPN uses a 256bit encryption
  • There are no third parties involved
  • There is no DNS blocking or filtering
You can test on dns leak test if your VPN is leaking. It is probably a good idiee to test your VPN no mather what all reviews or people say.


Support/Money back guerentee

If you have bought ExpressVPN and you are for some reason dissatisfied ExpressVPN offers a guerantee 30 day money back.
It is very straightfrowarded to cancel your subscription. You need to contact the support of ExpressVPN. He/she will ask you for your email and ask you for the reason why you want to cancel your subscribtion. After he/she has all the information received. The processing of the refund will take 1 week. After you have done this you need to disable "Turn off automatic renewal". You can find this settings by visiting the ExpressVPN 'about' page and click on 'Manage settings'.

support
You can contact ExpressVPN by email or a more direct way by chatting with a ExpressVPN agent. The chat is 24/7 present. I tested both methods. With the chat I had a reaction within minutes. By email I had a reaction within 24 hours. The asnwer was in both contact methods clear and helpfull. ExpressVPN has a FAQ here you can find the Frequently Asked Questions and the aswers. Before contacting ExpressVPN I recommend searching the FAQ through. There is some usefull information in it.


Conclusion ExpressVPN Review

Pro's ExpressVPN

  • Streaming is not a problem
  • Multiple payment options(including Cryptocurrency)
  • helpfull support / detailed FAQ
  • Compatible with many devices(including SmartTV and routers)
  • 30 day money back
  • Doesn't influence performance
  • Suppport P2P
  • 99.99% up time
Con's ExpressVPN
  • Expensive in comparisen with other VPN
  • Doesn't support portforwarding



I hope you enjoy reading the NordVPN review.
Feel free to drop a comment or a question.
You can order ExpressVPN here