Top Tested NordVPN Alternatives of 2024

No NordVPN? No problem — these are the best NordVPN alternatives of 2024 based on price, device compatibility, and overall value.
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Best Overall Value

4.6
Editorial Rating
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On Surfshark's website

Surfshark
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Best for Streaming

4.9
Editorial Rating
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On ExpressVPN's website

ExpressVPN
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Best for Affordability

4.8
Editorial Rating
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On Private Internet Access's website

Private Internet Access
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NordVPN is an excellent service — in fact, it’s our top VPN, and one that does almost everything well. That said, it won’t be the best option for everybody. Depending on your specific needs, you might want to consider one of our favorite NordVPN alternatives: Surfshark, ExpressVPN, or Private Internet Access (PIA).

Surfshark offers a fantastic value with great service at a lower price than NordVPN. ExpressVPN is compatible with a ton of different devices and streaming services. And PIA is one of the most affordable VPNs on the market. All of these are rated as the best VPNs of 2024, but let’s find out which one is right for you.

In this article
The best NordVPN alternatives
Surfshark: Best overall value
ExpressVPN: Best for streaming
PIA: Best for affordability
Honorable mentions
Speed tests
Why look for an alternative to NordVPN?
Best NordVPN alternatives FAQs
Bottom line: The best NordVPN alternatives

The best NordVPN alternatives

Top 3 NordVPN alternatives compared

Starting price Starts at $2.19/mo (billed biannually) Starts at $6.67/mo (billed annually) Starts at $2.19/mo (billed every two years)
VPN Protocols WireGuard, OpenVPN, IKEv2 Lightway, OpenVPN, IKEv2 WireGuard, OpenVPN, IPsec
Blocks ads, trackers, and malware
Obfuscation
Specialized torrenting/streaming servers
Money-back guarantee Yes — 30 days Yes — 30 days Yes — 30 days
Streaming support Yes — Netflix, Prime Video, Disney+, BBC iPlayer, HBO Max, Hulu, and more Yes — Netflix, Prime Video, Disney+, BBC iPlayer, HBO Max, Hulu, and more Yes — Netflix, Prime Video, Disney+, BBC iPlayer, HBO Max, Hulu, and more
Learn more Get Surfshark

Read Surfshark Review

Get ExpressVPN

Read ExpressVPN Review

Get PIA

Read PIA Review

Surfshark: Best overall value

Unlimited Device Protection and Large Server Network
4.6
Editorial Rating
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On Surfshark's website
VPN
Surfshark
83% off + 3 months free
  • All-in-one VPN app with 24/7 protection thanks to 3,200+ RAM-only servers in over 100 countries
  • Real-time malware defense, webcam protection, alternative ID creation, ad blocking, and more
  • One subscription covers unlimited devices for your entire household with access to 24/7 support

Who it’s best for

Surfshark is a solid VPN provider for just about anyone. It packs a ton of features and good performance into an extremely affordable package starting at just $2.19/mo (billed biannually) for a two-year plan. That makes it perhaps the best value in any VPN. Surfshark is also a great choice for households with a lot of devices, thanks to its unlimited simultaneous connections.

The Surfshark dashboard open on the main VPN page.
Surfshark app dashboard

What we liked

There’s a lot to like about Surfshark. Here are some of the standout features.

  • Price: Surfshark is one of the more affordable VPNs on the market today. With a starting price of just $2.19/mo (billed biannually), it’s definitely cheaper than NordVPN without skimping on features.
  • Devices and compatibility: Surfshark allows you to connect unlimited devices simultaneously, which is rare in the VPN world. It’s also compatible with a wide range of devices, including Windows, Mac, iOS, Android, and several web browsers and smart TV platforms.
  • Performance: Most VPNs cause some slowdown in performance due to routing traffic through additional servers. Surfshark did a good job of retaining performance in our testing, though, particularly on US servers.
  • Extra features: Surfshark offers a slew of useful features, including the CleanWeb ad blocker, Camouflage Mode to hide the fact that you’re using a VPN, and even antivirus and identity theft protection.

A TinyDesk Concert on YouTube. The Chrome extension for Surfshark shows that CleanWeb is on.
Surfshark CleanWeb blocks trackers and ads, including YouTube video ads

What we didn’t like

We don’t have a ton of complaints with Surfshark, but it’s not perfect. The two biggest cons are that you have to pay extra for some features (like antivirus) and that it's headquartered in the Netherlands. The Netherlands is part of the Nine Eyes Alliance, a group of countries that share intelligence with each other. While Surfshark’s no-logs policy means there shouldn’t be much to share, it’s still not ideal from a privacy standpoint.

Surfshark specs

Price range $2.19–$17.95/mo
Money-back guarantee Yes — 30 days
Number of servers 3200+ in 100 countries
Number of connected devices Unlimited
DNS leak test Pass
Kill switch test Pass
VPN protocol WireGuard, OpenVPN, IKEv2
No-logs policy No logs
Unblocks Netflix? Yes
Torrenting support Yes
Learn more Get Surfshark

Read Surfshark Review

ExpressVPN: Best for streaming

Extensive Server Network Provides Protection Wherever You Go
4.9
Editorial Rating
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On ExpressVPN's website
VPN
ExpressVPN
Save 49%
  • Hides intrusive display ads when browsing the web, improving page speed and easing data usage on mobile
  • Privacy and safety benefits of a VPN with best-in-class encryption and innovative server technology in 105 countries
  • Enjoy no activity logs, malicious sites and trackers protection, and more on up to 8 devices

Who it’s best for

ExpressVPN is ideal for users who value compatibility because it works with a ton of different devices, operating systems, and platforms. ExpressVPN is also a strong choice for streaming, thanks to the MediaStreamer Smart DNS system, which lets you stream even on devices that can’t run a VPN.

ExpressVPN Recommended Server List

What we liked

Here are our favorite ExpressVPN features.

  • Device compatibility: ExpressVPN works well with a huge variety of devices, including the standard Windows, Mac, and smartphone platforms, plus various Linux distributions, routers, and a ton of smart TV and gaming console platforms.
  • Strong privacy: ExpressVPN uses what it calls TrustedServer, a VPN server system that helps ensure privacy by never writing data to hard drives and following other strict security practices.
  • Streaming support: Similarly, ExpressVPN works well with a variety of streaming platforms. It’s a great VPN for watching Netflix, but it also works with even more niche services like Crunchyroll, Pluto TV, and Crackle.

ExpressVPN connected to Canadian Netflix
ExpressVPN unblocks Netflix

What we didn’t like

Our only real gripe with ExpressVPN is that it’s on the expensive side, especially compared to NordVPN, Surfshark, and PIA. That can make it a tough sell, despite its strengths. You’re paying double or more what you’d pay for the competition. Apart from that, ExpressVPN is an excellent option.

ExpressVPN specs

Price range $6.67–$12.95/mo
Money-back guarantee Yes — 30 days
Number of servers Servers in 105 countries
Number of connected devices 8
DNS leak test Pass
Kill switch test Pass
VPN protocol Lightway, OpenVPN, IKEv2
No-logs policy No logs
Unblocks Netflix? Yes
Torrenting support Yes
Learn more Get ExpressVPN

Read ExpressVPN Review

PIA: Best for affordability

Save 82% on a 2-year subscription + 2 months free
4.8
Editorial Rating
Learn More
On Private Internet Access's website
VPN
Private Internet Access
  • More affordable than most other VPNs, including ExpressVPN and NordVPN
  • Fast internet speeds and strict no-logs policy
  • Unblocks Netflix and other streaming services

Who it’s best for

Private Internet Access, or PIA for short, is one of the most affordable VPNs available — even more so than Surfshark. It’s ideal for users who want to save money on a VPN.

PIA quick tour with pro tips.

What we liked

Although affordability is its main selling point, PIA has a lot more going for it. Here’s what we like about this VPN.

  • Price: It’s worth repeating — PIA is a really good deal. At a price of just $2.19/mo (billed every two years) for the three-year plan, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a more affordable VPN that still offers a solid feature set.
  • Performance: PIA performed well in all our tests, including internet speed, streaming support, and leak tests. We detected no webRTC leaks in testing.
  • Privacy: Like most VPNs we recommend, PIA has a strict no-logs policy, meaning it doesn’t keep any information about how you use the service. On top of that, PIA has had its policy independently audited by Deloitte. We love to see VPNs do this because it helps give extra peace of mind that your data is safe.

What we didn’t like

We have two issues with PIA. The first is that it’s headquartered in the U.S. The U.S. is part of the Five Eyes Alliance, so, as with Surfshark, it could be compelled to share data with other countries. Granted, with a verified no-logs policy, there shouldn’t be much to share, but it’s a possibility.

Second (and more importantly) is the three-year plan commitment. Although PIA offers a steal of a price for its subscription, the true cost is the super long-term commitment — compared to other VPN providers that max out at two years. This could be a dealbreaker for those who aren’t comfortable with a multi-year subscription.

PIA specs

Price range $2.19–$11.99/mo
Money-back guarantee Yes — 30 days
Number of servers Servers in 91 countries
Number of connected devices Unlimited
DNS leak test Pass
Kill switch test Pass
VPN protocol WireGuard, OpenVPN, IPsec
No-logs policy No logs
Unblocks Netflix? Yes
Torrenting support Yes
Learn more Get PIA

Read PIA Review

Honorable mentions

There’s no shortage of solid VPN options on the market these days. This makes it tough to limit a list like this to just three. Plus, we know everyone has different needs and preferences. To that end, here are other top tested NordVPN alternatives you can consider.

  • Proton VPN: Proton VPN is all about privacy, even more so than the average VPN. It’s from the same company behind Proton Mail, the encrypted email service, so it’s got a strong pedigree. It’s also got a proven no-logs policy and other features to enhance privacy online. Proton VPN offers a limited free version, so you can try it out risk-free.

    5.0
    Editorial Rating
    Learn More
    On Proton VPN's website
    VPN
    Proton VPN
    • Easy to use
    • A strict no-logs policy that’s been tested in court
    • More expensive than NordVPN, Surfshark, and CyberGhost

    Read Our Proton VPN Review
  • CyberGhost: CyberGhost is extremely affordable, starting at $2.03/mo (billed every two years). It’s also got the largest server count of any VPN we’ve seen with over 11,000 virtual servers to choose from, and it offers specialized servers for regional streaming. Plus, it has a strict no-logs policy and is headquartered in a country (Romania) that’s against data retention laws.

    Leading Protection, Even on Smart TVs and Gaming Consoles
    4.3
    Editorial Rating
    Learn More
    On CyberGhost's website
    VPN
    CyberGhost
    Save 83%
    • High-speed global servers offering industry-leading 256-bit AES encryption and no data logs
    • Unlimited bandwidth, DNS and IP leak protection, and automatic kill switch available for up to 7 devices
    • Configurable with your router, smart TV, Amazon Fire TV stick, or gaming console
    • No split tunneling feature on desktop

    Read Our CyberGhost Review

Speed tests

Because of how they work — routing your traffic through distant servers — most VPNs cause a slowdown in performance. Nobody wants to lose speed, though, so we test each VPN to see which ones cause the biggest slowdowns. In the table below, the stat to pay attention to is “speed loss.” This is the percentage of download speed that we lost when connecting to a US VPN server.

From our testing, Surfshark performed the best of all the NordVPN alternatives, losing just 3.6% download speed. PIA lost just 6%, while ExpressVPN lost 12.8%, which is still not bad at all. (To give context, it’s not unheard of to lose 20% or more, even when connecting to servers in the same country.)

But, keep in mind that NordVPN actually increased our speeds when we conducted the same testing.

Base speed
(no VPN)
Speed with VPN
(to US server)
% speed loss
345.8 Mbps 333.4 Mbps 3.6% slower
203.8 Mbps 177.7 Mbps 12.8% slower
116.9 Mbps 109.9 Mbps 6.0% slower

Why look for an alternative to NordVPN?

In our opinion, NordVPN is the best VPN service on the market. It’s got a great feature set and performance at a very good price. However, that’s not to say it’ll be the best for every individual case.

For example, Surfshark and PIA support unlimited connections, so they can be ideal for users with large households that need to protect a lot of devices. ExpressVPN has very wide support for streaming services, so TV and movie fans might prefer it for catching their favorite shows. Other users might want something more affordable, and so PIA might be better for them.

Best NordVPN alternatives FAQs


+

Is NordVPN the best VPN service?

Yes, we think NordVPN is the best overall VPN for most people. It does everything well and has no glaring issues. You get a large server count, great performance, and strong privacy features, all at a relatively low price.


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What are the best NordVPN alternatives?

The best NordVPN alternatives are Surfshark, ExpressVPN, and Private Internet Access. Surfshark offers excellent value and fast performance, ExpressVPN is great for compatibility and streaming support, and PIA is one of the most affordable VPNs on the market. You can’t really go wrong with any of these top VPN providers as of 2024.


+

Which is better, NordVPN or Surfshark?

Choosing between NordVPN and Surfshark is actually pretty tough. Both offer good performance, have plenty of servers to choose from, and work well with streaming services. Overall, we think NordVPN is a slightly better service, but Surfshark is more affordable. We’d base our decision on price: if you can afford the extra money for NordVPN, go for that, but if price is your biggest deciding factor, Surfshark will serve you well.

Bottom line: The best NordVPN alternatives

The best NordVPN alternatives are Surfshark (an incredible value), ExpressVPN (great for compatibility and streaming), and Private Internet Access (super affordable). Even though Proton VPN and CyberGhost didn't make our top list, they're still worth considering. 

3 best NordVPN alternatives 2024

Starting price Best for Learn more
Starts at $2.19–$17.95/mo Best overall value Get Surfshark

Read Surfshark Review

Starts at $6.67–$12.95/mo Best for streaming Get ExpressVPN

Read ExpressVPN Review

Starts at $2.19–$11.99/mo Best for affordability Get PIA

Read PIA Review

Unlimited Device Protection and Large Server Network
4.6
Editorial Rating
Learn More
On Surfshark's website
VPN
Surfshark
83% off + 3 months free
  • All-in-one VPN app with 24/7 protection thanks to 3,200+ RAM-only servers in over 100 countries
  • Real-time malware defense, webcam protection, alternative ID creation, ad blocking, and more
  • One subscription covers unlimited devices for your entire household with access to 24/7 support

Author Details
Dave Schafer is a professional writer with a decade of experience specializing in cybersecurity. His expertise spans gadgets, technology, and the internet, with a focus on topics such as routers, hardware, and VPN product comparisons.