🏆 Winner: ExpressVPN
ExpressVPN or IPVanish, which one should you choose?
It’s no surprise that ExpressVPN is one of the most popular VPNs in the industry. It not only offers top-notch security but also powerful streaming performance and super secure features. But so does IPVanish for that matter. In fact, both VPNs are quite similar in terms of performance.
To help you decide which VPN is best for you in 2021, we put both ExpressVPN and IPVanish through a series of 12 different tests. So, without further ado, let the comparison begin.
Setting Up A Fight B/W ExpressVPN & IPVanish
We performed this side by side comparison between ExpressVPN vs IPVanish and concluded ExpressVPN as the winner based on the following factors:
|Jurisdiction||British Virgin Islands||USA|
|Security||AES 256 Bit||AES 256 Bit|
|Leaks||No IP, DNS & WebRTC||No IP, DNS & WebRTC|
|Servers||3,000+ in 94 Countries||1,600+ in 75+ Countries|
|Speed||27.17 Mbps average||20.15 Mbps average|
|Streaming||Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Hulu, and More||Netflix, BBC iPlayer, Hulu, and More|
|Compatibility||Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, routers||Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, routers|
|Trustpilot||4.6 ★★★★ – Reviews 9,986||4.6 ★★★★– Reviews 7,190|
|Best For||Overall Best VPN||Best for Streaming|
|More Info||ExpressVPN Review||IPVanish Review|
|Visit Site||Visit Site|
🏆 ExpressVPN is the winner!
Quick Overview: ExpressVPN vs IPVanish
For this comparison, we evaluated both providers in terms of the following attributes. Here is a summary of our comparison between ExpressVPN vs IPVanish.
Detailed Comparison: ExpressVPN vs IPVanish
Here is a detailed comparison of ExpressVPN vs IPVanish on various performance criteria:
1. Speed Test
Speed is one of the most critical attributes of a VPN which determines its performance and overall value. We conducted the speed tests on a base connection speed of 30 Mbps using US, UK, Germany, and Australian server locations.
|US||26.62 Mbps||24.46 Mbps|
|UK||26.43 Mbps||24.91 Mbps|
|Germany||28.15 Mbps||25.4 Mbps|
|Australia||26.33 Mbps||24.86 Mbps|
Speed Test #1: US Server
ExpressVPN’s US server managed to offer a speed of about 26.62 Mbps during testing. The speeds were good considering our base connection speed of 30 Mbps.
IPVanish on its US-New York server gave a speed of about 24.46 Mbps, slower than ExpressVPN.
Speed Test #2: UK Server
ExpressVPN gave 26.43 Mbps speed on its UK server, with surprisingly lower pings as compared to the US server.
In comparison to ExpressVPN, IPVanish was a little slower, as it gave a speed of 24.91 Mbps on its UK server. As you can see, pings were also higher as compared to ExpressVPN.
Speed Test #3: Germany Server
On the German server, ExpressVPN was the fastest, delivering a speed of about 28.15 Mbps, with comparatively lower pings.
IPVanish delivered a speed of 25.4 Mbps on its German server, with very high pings (226 ms) even though the speed was higher as compared to other server locations.
Speed Test #4: Australia Server
On its Australian server, ExpressVPN managed a consistent speed of 26.33 Mbps with extremely lower pings of about 4 ms. With such low pings, ExpressVPN’s Australian server is a great option for gamers.
IPVanish delivered a speed of 24.86 Mbps on its Australian server with high pings of 211 ms. With such high pings, you are bound to experience latency. Therefore, it’s not the best choice for gamers out there.
ExpressVPN – This provider has the reputation of being one of the fastest in the industry. After performing our tests, there was no doubt left that ExpressVPN is truly the fastest VPN out there.
It managed to output on average a download speed of 27.17 Mbps. The reason why ExpressVPN is so fast is that it offers a Lightway protocol that works like WireGuard protocol offering fast connection speeds.
IPVanish – The service performed surprisingly well in our speed tests as well and didn’t lag too far behind its rival. The average download speed that we managed to record was 24.86 Mbps. Overall, ExpressVPN is faster than IPVanish. You can also check out other snappy VPNs in our fastest VPN guide.
2. Pricing Plans
A VPN with all the great features would be of little value if it is too expensive. Needless to say, price is an important factor when searching for the right VPN. Let’s find out which one out of the two is cheaper.
|12-months||$6.67/mo (Save 49% and get 3 extra months FREE with 12-month plan this Black Friday)||$3.96/mo|
ExpressVPN – This provider has always been one of the higher-priced VPNs in the market. ExpressVPN offers three plans and all of them are quite expensive.
- Its 1-month plan starts from $12.95/mo,
- Its 12-month +3 months free plan costs $6.67/mo
- Is 6-month plan costs $9.99/mo.
IPVanish – IPVanish is more affordable than ExpressVPN. It also offers three plans which you can check out in the table above, however, what’s worth noting is that IPVanish costs $3.75/mo which is considerably cheaper than ExpressVPN. Based on dollar value, IPVanish is more reasonably priced.
Payment Options and Refund Policies
Result: ExpressVPN offers more payment options than IPVanish.
|Payment Method & Refund|
|Others||AliPay, UnionPay, iDeal, GiroPay, and more||❌|
ExpressVPN Payment Options & Refund Policy – ExpressVPN not only offers a 30-day refund policy but also accepts a lot of payment options. You can purchase it through crypto, PayPal, credit card, and via a few other options.
IPVanish Payment Options & Refund Policy – In comparison, IPVanis only accept two payment options. You can either purchase it through a credit card or through PayPal. There is no option to currently buy a subscription via crypto.
Similarly, IPVanish also offers a 30-day money-back guarantee as stated in their refund policy. It does have an exception though, “monthly customers do not qualify.” ExpressVPN on the other hand offers a refund for all subscriptions.
Both providers offer multiple features, however, one does it better. Let’s find out which one is better by comparing the features of both providers.
|Ad/malware blocker||✔ (built-in)||❌|
|Encrypted storage & backup||❌||✔|
ExpressVPN clearly takes the lead as it also offers a SmartDNS proxy called MediaStreamer to use ExpressVPN on devices that don’t support ExpressVPN apps like gaming consoles, SmartTVs, and more. IPVanish does not offer SmartDNS.
ExpressVPN is the only VPN that currently offers a browser extension for Safari. IPVanish doesn’t offer Safari browser extension, it is only compatible with Chrome and Firefox.
Another notable difference is that ExpressVPN offers 5 simultaneous connections while IPVanish offers unlimited connections.
ExpressVPN’s kill switch provides more functionality as compared to IPVanish’s kill switch as it also alerts users when the connection has been disconnected or interrupted.
Overall, we would recommend ExpressVPN because of its unique Network lock feature and Lightway protocol. Its Lightway protocol offers high connection speeds similar to the WireGuard protocol that is supported by NordVPN, Surfshark, and other VPNs.
4. Unblocking Strength: IPVanish vs ExpressVPN
Unblocking streaming services is one of the main purposes of using VPNs. So let’s find out which VPN can offer better-unblocking performance.
|Amazon Prime Video||✔||✔|
ExpressVPN – Fast and strong server networks mean that ExpressVPN can easily access Netflix and other geo-restricted services with no difficulty. We connected to the US server of Netflix to watch Parks and Recreation, and it was an instant success. We also didn’t encounter any issues while streaming BBC iPlayer, Hulu, Amazon Prime, or Disney Plus for that matter.
IPVanish – This provider had a shaky history with Netflix in the past and routinely got blocked. However, we didn’t encounter any problems when we tried to watch Coco on Netflix through their US server. Unfortunately, we were unable to unblock Sling TV and Fubo TV with IPVanish.
5. Netflix Test
Netflix has strong geo-restrictions that most VPNs cannot bypass. Netflix like other streaming services has been constantly blocking most VPN IPs from accessing its content. Therefore, not all VPNs work with Netflix.
Let’s look at which VPN is the best choice for accessing various Netflix libraries.
ExpressVPN Netflix Test
ExpressVPN is the best choice when it comes to unblocking US Netflix from anywhere in the world. We performed extensive tests to check whether ExpressVPN unblocks Netflix or not using its different US servers. We were able to stream “Criminal Minds” with ExpressVPN’s New Jersey -1 server. There were no proxy errors, neither did we face slow streaming. It worked 100% fine!
IPVanish Netflix Test
IPVanish does unblock US Netflix from abroad. In order to verify its Netflix unblocking feature, we tried unblocking “K9” using a US – Ashburn server and it worked like a charm.
Even though IPVanish doesn’t boast on its websites that it unblocks American Netflix, but when we tested it, it easily passed through Netflix restrictions. Still, you will have to perform some digging because some of the US servers may not unblock Netflix at times. When we asked IPVanish’s customer services representative about Netflix, he said:
“You can get the US Netflix, but other countries’ Netflix may not work.”
6. Logging Policy: ExpressVPN vs IPVanish
Discovering the logging policy of VPN services is a tricky matter. On the surface, they all claim to be a “no logs” service. However, when you dig deeper, you are more likely than not to find that the VPN actually does log some of your information. Let’s see how these two VPNs fare in this regard.
|Can hand over user data||❌||✔ (based in the USA)|
Does ExpressVPN keep logs? – No, ExpressVPN does not keep logs, this VPN service has never over-exaggerated its claims. For instance, in 2017, Turkish agencies suspected an individual used ExpressVPN to attempt deletion of evidence relating to the assassination of Russian Ambassador Andrey Karlov.
The Turkish authorities seized their servers, however, they couldn’t find any logged information regarding any user. This proved that they actually don’t keep logs. Coupled with the fact that ExpressVPN is located in the BVI, these are good reasons to trust the provider to keep your privacy intact.
Does IPVanish keep logs? – Despite having been located in the United States, IPVanish does not keep usage logs, but it does keep connection logs. IPVanish has repeatedly claimed that they have a strict zero log policy but in one case they handed over the connection log of a user to the Department of Homeland Security.
IPVanish collects user data like active email addresses and payment methods. Likewise, they also need a name, street address, city, state, zip code, and other basic information to process payments for their users.
Although it’s highly unlikely that something like that would ever happen again, if we had to choose between IPVanish and ExpressVPN, we would choose ExpressVPN every time.
7. Server Network
The server network plays an important part in ensuring the overall quality of a VPN’s performance. A large server network will ensure fast speeds and zero disconnections. Let’s find out which provider offers a better server network.
ExpressVPN Server Network – It has one of the largest server networks in the industry. They currently offer over 3,000 servers distributed in 94 countries around the globe.
IPVanish Server Network – It offers 1900+ servers in 75+ locations. This falls short when you compare it to the network coverage of ExpressVPN. But individually considered, IPVanish still has an appreciable server network.
8. Device Compatibility
Device compatibility is a super important factor when it comes to VPNs. Although both services offer compatibility across a wide range of devices, let’s find out which one is better.
|Amazon Fire TV||✔||✔|
ExpressVPN Device Compatibility – This VPN provider comes with dedicated apps for a huge number of devices and it can also be manually set up on a router and other devices with nonnative VPN support. With one ExpressVPN account, you can connect up to 5 devices at the same time.
Also, one of the most impressive and convenient features of ExpressVPN apps is the leak test tools embedded in the app. You can check for DNS and WebRTC leaks within the app without needing to use third-party website-based tools for these tests.
IPVanish Device Compatibility – It also supports a bunch of devices and can also be configured on routers, however, ExpressVPN still offers broader compatibility for devices such as Roku, Nvidia Shield, and even Chromecast. Primarily, IPVanish supports major desktop and mobile platforms, however, it lacks the extensive support for devices that Express VPN has.
With a single IPVanish account, you can connect unlimited devices at the same time, making it a great option for a large household. You can even configure IPVanish on Roku. Here is a look at IPVanish’s Android and iOS mobile apps.
9. Security and Encryption
In the comparison of ExpressVPN vs IPVanish, both offer strong security and encryption. Let’s see the detail of these features and tunneling protocols.
|Protocols Supported||PPTP, L2TP/IPSec, SSTP, OpenVPN, Lightway||OpenVPN, IKEv2, L2TP, PPTP|
Both ExpressVPN and IPVanish use AES-256 bit encryption which is one of the strongest VPN encryption technology in the industry. For authentication, ExpressVPN uses RSA keys (RSA-4096) as compared to IPVanish’s (RSA-2048). Both are strong and unbreakable, but ExpressVPN uses new RSA keys that offer more data protection and security.
In the comparison of ExpressVPN vs IPVanish, both offer various VPN protocol options that users can choose from depending upon their needs.
ExpressVPN offers strong encryption and tunneling protocols including OpenVPN, IKEv2, L2TP/IPSec, and a new Lightway protocol. ExpressVPNs Lightway protocol is a lot similar to NordVPN’s WireGuard protocol. It offers super-fast connection speeds, and we have already witnessed how fast it is in our latest NordVPN and CyberGhost VPN comparison.
At present, IPVanish is offering a comprehensive list of tunnelling protocols that include OpenVPN, IKEv2, L2TP, IPsec, SSTP, and PPTP protocols. It has one major disadvantage though, you will need to download OpenVPN to your device manually to create a secure connection.
It also automatically chooses the best protocol for your needs, but if you want you can also configure advanced settings in the app according to your requirements.
IPVanish, in collaboration with its sister company SugarSync, also offers an encrypted cloud storage service to its users for backing up your important files with strong security.
I checked both ExpressVPN and IPVanish for IP and DNS leak protection and both performed very well.
ExpressVPN Leak Protection Test Results
ExpressVPN does not leak IP or DNS. I connected the test by connecting to ExpressVPNs US server, and there was no IPv6 leak, as shown in the image below:
IPVanish Leak Protection Test Results
IPVanish does not leak IP or DNS. I tested for leaks when I connected to a Las Vegas, US server. I noticed in this IPVanish VPN review that the provider is leak-proof.
ExpressVPN features high server security offering a TrustedServer feature. This feature allows all ExpressVPN servers to run on RAM-disk mode without using physical hard drives. Meaning, it makes it impossible to store any user data or logs offering more security and privacy. Unlike ExpressVPN, IPVanish does not offer this feature and currently has no servers running on RAM-disk mode.
10. Torrenting Support: ExpressVPN vs IPVanish
Generally, you need a fast as well as a secure VPN that is P2P compatible. So, when it comes to secure torrenting, which of these services you should put your trust in?
ExpressVPN – It has the benefit of being under the jurisdiction of the British Virgin Islands, which makes it immune to DMCA and other such laws. In addition, ExpressVPN also offers a massive 3000+ server network which makes it ideal for downloading torrents at fast speeds. This was also the case in ExpressVPN and VyprVPN, where ExpressVPN offered better download speeds.
IPVanish – It is based in the US, which is not a safe jurisdiction. So, if you’re going to be downloading copyrighted content, IPVanish might not be a good choice. Overall, ExpressVPN is certainly the best VPN to download torrents between the two.
Note: We do not encourage either condone the use of torrenting to illegally acquire copyrighted material.
The jurisdiction from where any VPN provider operates is of great importance. Ideally, VPNs that don’t operate under the jurisdiction of 5-Eyes are safer as compared to VPNs that are subject to strict surveillance laws.
ExpressVPN Jurisdiction – It obviously has an edge over IPVanish simply because of its jurisdiction. The British Virgin Islands is a self-governing group of islands in the Caribbean which is considered a safe haven for privacy advocates. The country is not bound by any data retention or surveillance laws.
IPVanish Jurisdiction – It is headquartered in the unsafe jurisdiction of the United States. Since the US is a primary member of the Five Eyes intelligence-sharing alliance, your data will always be at risk of being forcefully confiscated.
This is a clear drawback for IPVanish because there have been cases in the past where US-based VPN companies have been forced to hand over user data to the authorities.
12. Customer Support
|Live Chat||✔||✔ (Not 24/7)|
ExpressVPN – The live chat support is slightly intermittent i.e. it becomes unavailable from time to time. When this happens, clicking the “live chat” button will only let you send them an email query. Getting a response from email support usually takes about an hour.
During our testing, ExpressVPN’s response took around 2 minutes and 17 seconds which is pretty good. The response wasn’t automated but personal. You can also check ExpressVPN Reddit reviews to get real customer experiences and stories with this VPN provider.
IPVanish – on the other hand, offers responsive 24/7 live chat support and responded to our query within 90 seconds. Every time I tried to contact them through live chat, I got the desired response in a timely manner.
You can go through the site if you want to read informative articles regarding several topics. Therefore, IPVanish is the better service in the customer support department courtesy of its quick and helpful live chat feature.
Which VPN offers the best value for your money?
IPVanish is cheaper than ExpressVPN and it offers more connections, but in terms of the features and functionality here are some of the drawbacks of IPVanish:
- Slower connection speeds
- Based in the US
- Logs some user data
- Does not work with Netflix and other popular streaming services
- Limited payment options
- Limited device support
In comparison of IPVanish vs ExpressVPN, ExpressVPN offers more features. For those wondering is ExpressVPN better than IPVanish, here are some of the benefits of ExpressVPN that you will not find on IPVanish:
- High-speed connections
- More features including split tunnelling, and light-weight protocol
- Strong security features
- Excellent no logs policy and no logging histories or cases
- Based in the British Virgin Islands
- Works great with Netflix and other streaming services
- Has undergone third-party audits
Considering all these factors, ExpressVPN no doubt offers the best value for your money.
🏆 Final Verdict: ExpressVPN is the winner!
The winner of this comparison is ExpressVPN. When writing this head-to-head ExpressVPN vs IPVanish comparison, we found ExpressVPN to be a lot better than IPVanish based on multiple factors like jurisdiction, speed, server network, and unblocking capabilities.
ExpressVPN also offers a 30-day money-back guarantee so you can test the service risk-free for 30 days.
View our 2021 VPN comparison chart for more details to see which one is better: IPVanish or ExpressVPN.