ExpressVPN vs Private Internet Access vs 2017

After comparing these VPNs, we have a winner!

 
 

Which VPN is better?

Technical writer, ex-robot manual creator gone privacy enthusiast/VPN expert
Express has servers in more countries, but PIA allows for up to 5 simultaneous connections (compared to 3 for Express). The biggest attribute for ExpressVPN, dubbed the fastest VPN on earth, is its fast and extremely reliable speeds. They also have a built-in speed test. That’s not to say that PIA is a slouch in this area, but ExpressVPN clearly comes out ahead. Of concern for some is the Great Firewall of China, which Express is extremely adept at breaking through, whereas PIA is not. Express also boasts extremely intuitive, sleek and easy-to use software. PIA’s is not terrible, but it is a bit clunkier and utilizes the system tray icon for server selection instead of the application. What PIA does have going for it is its pocket-friendly price tag, though neither will set you back much at all, and PIA’s lack of live chat and its hesitant support for customers regarding Netflix and making the VPN work in high censorship countries may make any saving a false economy.
 
Rating
Features
  • 4.9
  • 4.5
Pricing
  • 4.9
  • 4.9
Ease of Use
  • 5.0
  • 4.3
Reliability & Support
  • 5.0
  • 4.4
 

Reviews

Expert Review

Ran Greenberg
New-Media and online expert, Venture Capitalist and investor
  • 4.9

They claim to be the fastest VPN around, and while I am normally cynical about such claims, I honestly can say this was the fastest VPN I have tried. Their special feature, “VPN Speed Test,” lets users check how fast their VPN server is working so that they can chop and change the location that is fastest for them. They also have a plethora of servers - 1000+ in 145 locations across 94 countrie

Read all
Latest positive user review
Karry L.
  • 5.0
Really knowledgeable techical staff The best thing about this app is their support team. After I installed the app I was having trouble watching Netflix and Jack was able to find a fix for me in a few minutes. Really, really glad this app still works. Worth it for the amazing service.
Latest negative user review
Derek
  • 1.0
Overrated vpn service Really overrated and overpriced vpn service. The speed are really poor especially with US servers. The only thing customer service offers is to get refunded instead of trying to solve your problem. They should really pay more attention to speeds as rated very good and sometimes take a look to chats what customer guys are typing
Expert Review

Ariel Hochstadt
Ex-Google, International tech speaker
  • 4.5

Private Internet Access (PIA) is one of the most affordable VPN service providers on the market. The online privacy provider boasts over 3,000 servers, spread across 37 locations, in 25 countries. PIA is a service provider based in the USA with ties to London-based Trust Media Inc. While this isn't bad, it is important to note that both the USA and UK are part of the "Five Eyes" countries. It offe

Read all
Latest positive user review
Wayne Harvey
  • 5.0
Secure and fast Have been with PIA for a couple years now and am extremely happy with the service. I get speeds of around 95-97% of my connection speed total which is excellent. Have maybe 1 or 2 dropouts per year so stability is really good.
Latest negative user review
Anna
  • 1.0
Zero Customer Service - do not buy! This VPN is not performing as advertised. I have opened three trouble tickets & sent two emails, all in an effort to cancel the service within the 7 day trial period for a full refund. It has been three days and I have not received any response (other than the auto reply that they are busy and will answer in their own sweet time). Their inability to reply to a simple request in three days is unacceptable.
Latest positive user review
Karry L.
  • 5.0
Really knowledgeable techical staff The best thing about this app is their support team. After I installed the app I was having trouble watching Netflix and Jack was able to find a fix for me in a few minutes. Really, really glad this app still works. Worth it for the amazing service.
Wayne Harvey
  • 5.0
Secure and fast Have been with PIA for a couple years now and am extremely happy with the service. I get speeds of around 95-97% of my connection speed total which is excellent. Have maybe 1 or 2 dropouts per year so stability is really good.
Latest negative user review
Derek
  • 1.0
Overrated vpn service Really overrated and overpriced vpn service. The speed are really poor especially with US servers. The only thing customer service offers is to get refunded instead of trying to solve your problem. They should really pay more attention to speeds as rated very good and sometimes take a look to chats what customer guys are typing
Anna
  • 1.0
Zero Customer Service - do not buy! This VPN is not performing as advertised. I have opened three trouble tickets & sent two emails, all in an effort to cancel the service within the 7 day trial period for a full refund. It has been three days and I have not received any response (other than the auto reply that they are busy and will answer in their own sweet time). Their inability to reply to a simple request in three days is unacceptable.
 

Pricing

Starting price $6.67/ month $3.33/ month
Money Back Guarantee (Days) 30 7
Devices per license 3 5
See plans & pricing See Plans See Plans
 
 

 The Bottom Line

Daniel Krohn
Technical writer, ex-robot manual creator gone privacy enthusiast/VPN expert

ExpressVPN is more popular than PIA and comes out ahead. The number one reason for that is its speed, which is clearly noticeable when streaming media and downloading torrents. ExpressVPN is easier to test, as they offer 30 (vs PIAs 7) days money back guarantee. Express interface is slick and easy-to-use, while PIA seems to have been designed in the 90s but it is really of little importance; what we are looking for at the end of the day are easy-to-use apps. If you want to save a few dollars, PIA is a good option which you can confidently use. If the internet speed is important to you, and you are not just checking emails from China, Express is your pick. More Info