NordVPN VS PureVPN

Deciding which VPN to use can be tricky. To help you out, we’ve put two popular services to the test, breaking down everything they have to offer. So which is better for most people in 2024: NordVPN or PureVPN? Let’s find out!

Can’t choose between NordVPN or PureVPN?

If you’re not sure which of these is right for you, we’d recommend NordVPN It’s a well-established and versatile VPN with some of the highest speeds we’ve seen. Not only that, but it works in China and is currently offering a steep discount on long-term plans. We also have an exclusive PureVPN coupon in case you’d like to try both services for yourself.

Summary: NordVPN vs PureVPN

NordVPN

  • Fast, stable connections
  • 24/7 support over live chat
  • Highly customizable security
  • Perfect for streaming
  • Diskless servers

PureVPN

  • Servers in over 70 countries
  • Works with most streaming services
  • Lots of advanced security options
  • Designed with novices in mind
  • Dedicated IPs

NordVPN vs PureVPN: Pricing and discounts

No valueNordVPNPureVPN
WebsiteNordVPN.comPureVPN.com
Subscription periodsOne month, one year, two yearsOne month, one year, two years
Special offer63% discount on the 2-year plan81% discount on two-year subscriptions
Highest price per month$12.99$10.95
Lowest monthly cost$3.39$1.89
One year price$59.88$44.95
Money back guarantee30 days31 days
Best deal (per month)$3.39
SAVE 67% on a 2 yr plan + gifts
$1.89
85% off the 2-yr standard plan + 4/mo free

Both providers have a tiered subscription system where you can pay more to gain extra benefits like password managers and cloud storage. In the interest of fairness, though, we’ll just be comparing their standard VPN-only plans.

PureVPN costs $2 less than its rival per month and remains cheaper even with longer subscriptions thanks to an exceptionally deep discount on its two-year plan. To its credit, while NordVPN is one of the pricier options for monthly coverage, it’s drastically cheaper in the long-term. In fact, if you sign up for two years, you’ll effectively pay just over a third of the monthly price.

NordVPN and PureVPN both offer a money-back guarantee, meaning you can try it with no risk. NordVPN’s lasts for 30 days whereas PureVPN is one of the only major providers offering a 31-day guarantee.

Best Deal for NordVPN: Sign up for a two year deal and get over 60% off.

Best Deal for PureVPN: Save over 80% on a 2yr plan.

NordVPN vs PureVPN features

No valueNordVPNPureVPN
WebsiteNordVPN.comPureVPN.com
Simultaneous Connections610
Devices SupportedWindows, MacOS, iOS, Android, LinuxWindows, MacOS, iOS, Android, Smart TVs, Chromebook, Routers
Manual install devicesSelect routersSet-top boxes, routers
Free extrasAd-blocking, Dark Web Monitor, MeshNet, malware-scanning, automatic wifi protection, browser extensions for Chrome, Edge, and FirefoxPersonalized server selection, browser extensions for Firefox, Edge, and Google Chrome
Best deal (per month)$3.39
SAVE 67% on a 2 yr plan + gifts
$1.89
85% off the 2-yr standard plan + 4/mo free

No matter whether you like to browse at home or on the go, these VPNs have you covered. There are apps for all major operating systems including Windows, Android, iOS, macOS, and Linux (PureVPN even provides a graphical app for Linux).

The similarities don’t end there, though: NordVPN and PureVPN both have browser extensions for Chrome, Firefox, and Edge. Additionally, each allows you to let specific apps pass through the VPN unencrypted (a feature known as split tunneling).

There are a few key differences, however. NordVPN has automatic ad-blocking and malware-scanning, plus a MeshNet feature capable of securely connecting your devices together across huge distances. There’s even a dark web monitor that can alert you if your details are leaked online.

Not to be outdone, PureVPN has introduced Quantum resistant servers. These use encryption keys designed by quantum algorithms that (theoretically) will remain secure even as incredibly powerful quantum computers become more widespread. Additionally, if the last server you used seemed to work well, the app is more likely to connect you to it automatically next time.

Port forwarding is available in PureVPN’s Windows app, a useful feature if you like to regularly seed torrents. However, bear in mind that it is only available as an extra that you pay $1.49 per month in addition to the regular subscription fee. NordVPN does not provide the option to forward ports at all.

Both these VPNs offer dedicated static IPs that don’t change and are exclusively reserved for one user account. This feature is an add-on with both providers, but is considerably cheaper when you subscribe to PureVPN. A dedicated IP with NordVPN will set you back an extra $4.19 per month. With PureVPN, by contrast, you can get a dedicated IP for $2.49 (or $3.49 with pot forwarding).

Streaming & Netflix comparison

No valueNordVPNPureVPN
WebsiteNordVPN.comPureVPN.com
Unblocks Sky Go
Unblocks Prime Video
Unblocks BBC iPlayer
Unblocks ABC
Unblocks CBS
Unblocks NBC
Unblocks ITV
Unblocks Channel 4
Unblocks Hulu
Best deal (per month)$3.39
SAVE 67% on a 2 yr plan + gifts
$1.89
85% off the 2-yr standard plan + 4/mo free

The last time we tested PureVPN, it did well but struggled against stubborn platforms like Amazon Prime Video and ABC. We’re pleased to announce that it had no such issues this time, and in fact, finding servers that worked was easier than ever since the app now has specifically-labeled servers for major platforms.

PureVPN streaming servers shortcut
The Shortcuts tab can find you the perfect streaming server in one click

NordVPN also worked with every service we tested, and while it doesn’t label its streaming servers, it does have one other trick up its sleeve. Essentially, any server will work with Netflix, and if NordVPN can’t access a specific regional library, it’ll just redirect you to the American version of the site.

China

China’s Great Firewall blocks most VPNs outright, making it difficult to stay in touch with family while visiting the country. Luckily, there are still a few providers capable of access the wider internet from the Chinese mainlaind.

NordVPN works perfectly well in China, provided you use one of its obfuscated servers. PureVPN struggled to avoid detection for a long time but now appears to be working again at the time of writing, and provides manual setup instructions just in case you run into any issues with the app during your trip.

Setup and interface

No valueNordVPNPureVPN
WebsiteNordVPN.comPureVPN.com
Automatic setup wizardLinux, Windows, MacOS, iOS, AndroidWindows, Linux, MacOS, Android, iOS, Amazon Fire TV/ Firestick
Main location selectionMap-based/List-basedList-based
Extra settings pages
Mobile-friendly
Best deal (per month)$3.39
SAVE 67% on a 2 yr plan + gifts
$1.89
85% off the 2-yr standard plan + 4/mo free

NordVPN’s desktop app is nice and simple, with a list of countries on the left and a map on the right, plus tabs on the left that lead to various extra tools and settings. Users can also search for a specific country, which, in our opinion, tends to be the quickest way to find what you’re looking for.

NordVPN connect to vpn screenshot
Specialized servers are availble right there on the home screen

It looks very similar on mobile devices, though naturally, the layout is vertical instead of horizontal.  The settings menu has been pared down somewhat but you can still choose to use obfuscated servers, automatically connect to the VPN, and block ads and malware.

PureVPN changing server
PureVPN displays useful info and makes switching servers easy

PureVPN has a very simple design, with a single quick-connect button on the main page and your most recently-used servers just below it. We’re big fans of the settings menu too, with its neat design and clear explanation of what each feature does. From our point of view, there’s nothing here that could really overwhelm new users, and nothing you can change that would cause any significant problems.

Servers and performance

No valueNordVPNPureVPN
WebsiteNordVPN.comPureVPN.com
Server countries6170+
Total number of servers6,000+6,500+
Mobile-friendly
Best deal (per month)$3.39
SAVE 67% on a 2 yr plan + gifts
$1.89
85% off the 2-yr standard plan + 4/mo free

PureVPN used to focus on providing access to as many locations as possible, up to 140 at one point. However, it changed its strategy and now supports around 70 countries. This includes some less-common locations such as Afghanistan, Aruba, and the Cayman Islands.

NordVPN, meanwhile, has servers in around 60 countries and actually lets you know exactly how many are in each place. For instance, around 2,000 of its servers are located in the US alone, which is a huge percentage of its network. Here’s a breakdown of each VPN’s supported locations:

NordVPNPureVPN
Afghanistan
Albania
Angola
Algeria
Argentina
Aruba
Australia
Austria
Azerbaijan
Bangladesh
Bahamas
Bahrain
Barbados
Belgium
Bermuda
Bolivia
Bosnia and Herzegovina
Brazil
British Virgin Islands
Brunei Darussalam
Bulgaria
Canada
Cayman Islands
Chile
Costa Rica
Croatia
Cyprus
Czech Republic
Denmark
Egypt
Estonia
Finland
France
Georgia
Germany
Greece
Hong Kong
Hungary
Iceland
India
Indonesia
Italy
Ireland
Israel
Japan
Latvia
Lithuania
Luxembourg
Macedonia
Malaysia
Mexico
Moldova
Monaco
Netherlands
New Zealand
Nigeria
Norway
Oman
Panama
Philippines
Poland
Portugal
Puerto Rico
Romania
Russia
Serbia
Singapore
Slovakia
Slovenia
South Africa
South Korea
Spain
Sweden
Switzerland
Taiwan
Thailand
Turkey
United Arab Emirates
United Kingdom
United States
Ukraine
Vietnam

So how do these services compare when it comes to speed? Well, NordVPN remains one of the quickest VPNs we’ve seen though its average speeds have dropped slightly since last time we checked, and now hover around 200 Mbps. PureVPN has actually improved quite a bit, though, and now delivers average speeds of 136 Mbps.

For context, this means that either service is fast enough for data-intensive tasks like streaming, video-calling, or gaming. Unless you’re used to extremely fast internet, you probably won’t even notice much of a difference once connected.

Reddit users still complain about PureVPN’s performance. Specifically, people warn  that performance can be wobbly, meaning that you may get good speeds one day and bad speeds the next. This kind of inconsistency can be frustrating and is a great reason to opt for NordVPN instead.

Security

No valueNordVPNPureVPN
WebsiteNordVPN.comPureVPN.com
VPN protocolsOpenVPN, NordLynxIKEv2, OpenVPN, Wireguard
OpenVPN data encryption256-bit AES256-bit AES
OpenVPN control channel encryptionRSA-4096RSA-2048
Kill Switch
Private DNS servers
Best deal (per month)$3.39
SAVE 67% on a 2 yr plan + gifts
$1.89
85% off the 2-yr standard plan + 4/mo free

Both of these VPNs enable you to use the OpenVPN and IKEv2 protocols but PureVPN also supports WireGuard whereas NordVPN has its own WireGuard variant named NordLynx. This uses a proprietary double NAT system that’s meant to address some of the theoretical weakpoints that the base protocol has.

Purevpn settings
PureVPN offers a good set of tools for beginners but nothing particularly breathtaking

NordVPN and PureVPN both use 256-bit AES encryption on OpenVPN, which is widely considered ucnrackable, so no problems there. Additionally, each includes a kill switch (which blocks all web traffic if you disconnect suddenly) and protection against IPv6, DNS, and WebRTC leaks.

NordVPN settings
NordVPN users can customize everything from the kill switch to their visibility on LAN

If you’re looking for more control over the way your app works, NordVPN might be the better option. It allows you to tailor your setup in fine detail, such as having the VPN connect automatically whenever you use a specific network, kill certain apps when your connection drops, and choose whether you’re hidden on LAN. In contrast, PureVPN provides the very basics, which is enough to get you familiar with your first VPN, but perhaps not enough to keep experienced users satisfied.

Privacy

No valueNordVPNPureVPN
WebsiteNordVPN.comPureVPN.com
HQ base of operationPanamaBritish Virgin Islands
Connection logs
Activity logsNone
User details for signupEmail addressEmail address
Anonymous payment optionsBitcoin, Ethereum, RippleBitcoin, Ethereum, Ripple
Best deal (per month)$3.39
SAVE 67% on a 2 yr plan + gifts
$1.89
85% off the 2-yr standard plan + 4/mo free

Both of these VPNs operate out of privacy-friendly jurisdictions and both allow you to pay in cryptocurrency for a more anonymous registration. That’s a great start but how private your activities are really depends on your provider’s logging policy.

NordVPN doesn’t record any data that could lead back to you (except for advertising IDs on mobile, which can and should be cleared regularly). PureVPN also follows a no-logs policy, though it does collect some analytical data for diagnostic purposes.

Here’s the good news: you don’t have to take either VPN’s word at face value. That’s because both have been independently audited to prove that they’re properly-secured and privacy-conscious. That should offer some real peace of mind to anyone concerned about PureVPN’s past privacy issues.

Customer service

No valueNordVPNPureVPN
WebsiteNordVPN.comPureVPN.com
24/7 live chat
Ticket support
Email support
Average email response time3 hours, 45 mins45 minutes
Searchable knowledge base
Phone support
Video guides
Best deal (per month)$3.39
SAVE 67% on a 2 yr plan + gifts
$1.89
85% off the 2-yr standard plan + 4/mo free

A first-class customer support team is what separates good VPNs from the great ones. NordVPN and PureVPN both provide 24/7 support over live chat, as well as searchable knowledge bases and FAQs on the respective websites.

Part of our research involves contacting customer support to see how easy it really is to get help. We found that when we actually got talking to support staff, both teams replied quickly with helpful information, though PureVPN’s chatbot did decide that we were getting an email response instead of putting us through to a human on our first attempt.

All in all, these providers make it very easy to get help. PureVPN even has a tab dedicated to support in its apps so you don’t even have to find the right part of the website yourself, while NordVPN lets you submit a support ticket without ever leaving the app.

NordVPN vs PureVPN for gaming

If you specifically want a VPN for accessing international game servers or easier lobbies on games like Warzone, then we recommend NordVPN over PureVPN. Although both VPNs posted decent speeds in our most recent tests, PureVPN is a bit less consistent, which means that you may find that speeds go up and down. This could lead to frustration when trying to play online games.

NordVPN by contrast offers its highly reliable NordLynx protocol, which is a custom fork of WireGuard designed to give you excellent speeds and reliability. This makes it a fantastic option for playing multiplayer games, HD streaming, and other data-intensive tasks.

What do Reddit users say about NordVPN vs PureVPN?

While there is no doubt that PureVPN’s reputation has improved in recent years, many Reddit users still warn against using PureVPN. We have found various threads from the last six months that specifically recommend alternatives like NordVPN and Surfshark over PureVPN.

Reddit users feel that there are still some questions regarding PureVPN’s commitment to privacy, and they experience inconsistent speeds and reliability issues with PureVPN that they do not get when connected to NordVPN.

NordVPN is the preferred option among Reddit users

NordVPN vs PureVPN: the winner

Let’s be clear: NordVPN and PureVPN are both high-quality VPNs with a lot to offer. That said, we believe NordVPN is the better choice for the average user.

NordVPN gives you the freedom to do whatever you’d like online. It’s fast, highly-versatile, and capable of just about anything you throw at it. This is a service that’ll last you a while too, since there’s enough customization here to keep even experienced users happy. Whether you want to watch TV or just shop safely online, NordVPN would be a fantastic choice.

Best Deal for NordVPN: Sign up for a two year deal and get 60% off.

Best Deal for PureVPN: Save 80% on a two-year plan.

Methodology: How we compared NordVPN and PureVPN

Accurately comparing two VPNs is fairly difficult. That’s because two services with the same supported protocols, encryption methods, and server locations can perform extremely differently. To find out whether NordVPN or PureVPN was better for the average user, we had to pay close attention to each of the following areas:

  • Server availability: Our first step was to look at each VPN’s network. We noted the number of available servers as well as any unusual locations and whether either provider used virtual servers. The spread is important too, since distance from your chosen server has an impact on performance.
  • Speed: There’s no excuse for slow connections anymore. We perform regular speed tests on leading providers so we can see how their speeds have improved over time. This involves checking the speed at multiple times of day, using servers in three countries, and averaging out the results to get a clearer idea of a VPN’s performance  – note that this method also punishes providers with inconsistent speeds.
  • Versatility: People use VPNs for all kinds of things, so we check to see if competitors allow torrenting and can beat online censorship. To prevent you from having to disconnect constantly, we also attempt to securely access popular streaming services like Netflix, Disney Plus, and Amazon Prime Video.
  • Security and privacy: Your security is our top priority. That’s why we carefully examine VPNs for features like leak protection, uncrackable encryption, stealth modes, and kill switches. We also prioritize VPNs with proven no-logs policies and anonymous payment methods.
  • User-friendliness: We’re big fans of anything that makes a service easier to use. This could be well-organized apps, 24/7 live chat, or simply a lack of connection limits.
  • Pricing: We’ve seen hundreds of VPNs and unfortunately, some of them try to get away with charging more than is really justified. To ensure you pay as little as possible, we’ll explain if there are any long-term discounts, coupons, free trials, or money-back guarantees you can take advantage of.

Interested in learning more? Why not check out our VPN testing post that explains our full methodology?

Other VPN comparisons:

NordVPN vs PureVPN: Frequently Asked Questions

Is PureVPN more secure than NordVPN?

PureVPN is a security-conscious provider that uses uncrackable encryption to make sure none of your activities can be read by snoopers. Like NordVPN, it features a kill switch, DNS leak protection, and split tunneling ability.

There are a couple of differences, though. PureVPN has special Quantum-resistant servers that were designed to future-proof the service against computers that could theoretically trivialize existing encryption algorithms at some point in the future.

NordVPN doesn’t have these, but it does offer obfuscated servers, automatic tracker-blocking and malware-scanning, and the ability to securely access your other devices from anywhere in the world.

Does PureVPN work in China?

PureVPN used to have reliability issues in China but at the time of writing, it seems to be working as normal. There are manual setup instructions in the help section of the website just in case you run into any difficulty, though.

Which is better for Linux: NordVPN or PureVPN?

NordVPN and PureVPN both have their own Linux apps, so you could actually use either service. That said, NordVPN’s is entirely command-line based, whereas PureVPN gives user the choice of a CLI app or one with a traditional graphical interface.

To its credit, NordVPN is confirmed to work with around nine distros inclusing Ubuntu, Debian, Fedora, Linux Mint, and openSUSE. PureVPN, on the other hand, simply says that it supports “all major distributions”.