IPVanish vs PIA – Why IPVanish is Better

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Updated: January 1st, 2018

IPVanish vs PIA

Both IPVanish and Private Internet Access are very respectable and popular VPN service providers in the industry right now - and have been for some years.

Thus, many online users want to know what the main differences are between these two big names with regards to the most important factors to consider when choosing a VPN provider. So we here at Fried wanted to help such users out by comparing these services against one another across said most significant areas of performance. 

So without further ado, here is our comparison breakdown of Private Internet Access vs IPVanish. Enjoy!

NOTE: The percentages for each VPN across the factors are calculated against every VPN service provider we have reviewed here at Fried.com. So 100% means that service is one of -- if not the -- best performer in that area.

Quick Comparison

ipvanish vs private internet access
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Speed & Performance


Security & Privacy


Device Compatibility


Server Locations


Customer Support



Comparison Breakdown

With the best of the two VPN providers determined, it is just as important to understand exactly how IPVanish has been considered the better VPN service. This requires a more detailed breakdown of each of the six factors taken into consideration.

So to give you a more comprehensive understanding of how each VPN service performs in these factors, here is just that: a detailed breakdown of IPVanish VS Private Internet Access:


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1 month = $10
6 months = $53.98
12 months = $77.99

IPVanish price their VPN service in the mid-to-high range when set against all other respectable VPN providers currently on the market. Generous savings are given to users that are willing to commit to longer plans.

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1 month = $6.95
6 months = $35.95
12 months = $39.95

Private Internet Access is definitely one of best value for money VPN services around today, with very affordably priced plans made available to users. Just as with IPVanish, longer plans = bigger savings overall.



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When it comes to sheer consistency of speed performance across all servers we tested on IPVanish, it just edged ahead of Private Internet Access, but really just by consistency. 

To give you a more definitive idea of how the speed testing went, below are the results of a quick ping test I did on my Macbook firstly without and then with the VPN connected on my device:

Without VPN:

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With VPN:

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Overall IPVanish Speed & Performance score:

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Although Private Internet Access was able to deliver faster speeds at times over IPVanish, there were some momentary small inconsistencies with connection time and speed.

As with IPVanish, I downloaded Private Internet Access and installed the software onto my device, and then conducted a ping test using SpeedTest ran a test before then after being connected to the VPN. Here are the results:

Without VPN:

ipvanish vs private internet access 10

With VPN:

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Overall Private Internet Access Speed & Performance score:



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IPVanish offers up to 256-bit protocol encryption on all server connections and also have a strict zero-logging policy, which is great. Only downside is the US-based location of the IPVanish HQ that puts them at the mercy of strict US laws.

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Just as with IPVanish, Private Internet Access provide solid levels of 128 and 256-bit encryption protocols giving great levels of privacy security. Zero-logging is also enforced at all times, however PIA must also adhere to US laws.


Security and privacy is arguably the biggest priority for anyone looking to use a VPN on their devices. Thus it makes sense to expand a little on the overall performance of each of these VPNs in this important area. 
Both of these VPN providers do not keep any logs (neither usage nor activity logs), which is great. Depending on the protocol you use, IPVanish offer up to 256-bit encryption (industry standard) whereas PIA can offer up to 1024-bit encryption. However, when I tested out this protocol level with PIA I did notice a considerable drop in the connection speed. Significantly, both of these services are based out of the US, which allows them the zero-logging policy (because of the US data retention laws) but also means that both must adhere to handing over all user data if asked without question by the US government. 




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IPVanish is compatible with all major devices and platforms, from iOS to Android to OS X to Windows to Linux. Users can also easily setup a IPVanish VPN connection on devices like games consoles and eReaders via their router.

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You can setup and connect to Private Internet Access from all major devices and platforms just as with IPVanish. Setup guides and tutorials are also provided to make multiple device setup as easy to do as possible.


Quick note that not many first time VPN users are aware of: 

If you want to have your entire home internet connected to the VPN you decide to go with, this is entirely possible. Any popular VPN provider (including both IPVanish and Private Internet Access) will have a simple guide on their website to show you how to have their software placed directly onto your home internet router. It requires a tiny bit of technical experience, however once you have it set up -- any device in your home that you have connected to the internet will be connecting through the VPN.  




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Many servers are offered to users by IPVanish spread across over 60 countries all over the globe. What sets IPVanish apart from 99% of VPN providers is the offering of China-based servers, giving users access to online content only unblocked within China.

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Although over 3000 servers are offered to users on Private Internet Access, this mammoth selection is spread across 25+ different nations, which is less than half the offering you get with IPVanish. If international online content unblocking is a priority, then go with IPVanish.


Both IPVanish and Private Internet Access offer more than enough locations in countries that users require access to services within (e.g. the UK, US, Canada, Australia, Japan and many European countries, to name but a few), however if privacy protection is you priority -- over unblocking online services and websites -- then it will serve you better to go with IPVanish in this department. 

IPVanish vs Private Internet Access : SERVER LOCATIONS?

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IPVanish customer support is tentative and very knowledgable. Unfortunately there is no live chat on the IPVanish website, however support emails are responded to comprehensively within 30 minutes in our experience.

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Private Internet Access clearly care about customer support since they offer multiple avenues of contact for users, including website live chat -- although this live chat usually has quite a lengthy wait time, which can defeat the purpose.


As you can see from the more detailed comparison above, although you do get live chat with Private Internet Access and not with IPVanish on their respective websites, the lengthy response time I experienced with PIA negates the point, when I was able to receive email responses from IPVanish in the same time frame. 

Thus, you really cannot define a clear winner in this area of comparison. Both provide customer service quality levels (once conversing with a support team member) that are top-notch. Really friendly and super helpful with resolving issues fast. 

IPVanish vs Private Internet Access : CUSTOMER SUPPORT?


Additional Features

Any self-respecting Virtual Private Network service provider in today's competitive marketplace will offer at a couple "additional add-ons" to the basic VPN service they are providing. 

From 'kill switches' to 'IP auto-scrambling' to specific privacy enhancements like IPv6 leak protection, you can expect to have a few helpful and cool feature-sets in your VPN. So with that said, let's take a quick look at what both IPVanish and PIA have on offer when you use each of their services.

- Both providers have auto-login and auto-connecting as standard, which is always useful. 

- IPVanish allows you to sort the server locations they offer by fastest ping speed, which means you can see which connection will impact the speed of your internet the least. Also you can choose the server based on what your activity is going to be (gaming, video streaming, etc). 

- If privacy protection is the top priority for you, then IPVanish provide a handy little tool called an "IP rotator", which auto-changes your IP address (by connecting to different server locations regularly) to keep your activity extra-privatised. 


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In IPVanish VS Private Internet Access -- IPVanish proves itself to be the better VPN service provider. This was definitely one of the closest calls we have made between two VPN providers. Both performed very well across all areas, however in the end it is the sheer offering of server locations (and thus international IP address) along with consistency of speed performance that edges out IPVanish as the better performing VPN service. 


IPVanish just manages to come out victorious as the better all round VPN service when compared against Private Internet Access. This difference in overall performance is certainly reflected accurately in the pricing of each VPN provider, which is very positive to see. 

With that said, Private Internet Access' price plans being so affordable means that if you prioritise privacy protection and don't wish for the fastest internet speeds of the two, then it may make sense to give Private Internet Access over IPVanish.

So ultimately it comes down to what your top priority is, what your budget is and whether you plan to use a VPN as a part of your daily internet usage longterm, or are simply looking for a quick momentary fix to unblock a channel like ESPN or service like Netflix that you can't access online.

Be sure to check out our comprehensive full reviews of both ExpressVPN and IPVanish to take a complete, detailed look at each service independently from each other:

Got your own personal experience with IPVanish or Private Internet Access? Or with both? 

Definitely let me know your thoughts, feedback and opinion on how they performed for you. I conducted this in-depth comparison and remained as objective as a could be. However, it always helps to have multiple experiences to gather a larger overview of how these two popular VPN providers compare when held up against each other. 

Pop a comment down below! Make it as short 'n' snappy or as detailed as you like. Either way I will massively appreciate your input, as it will only serve to enhance this comparison page for ever new reader that checks it out. 

My Top VPN Recommendation

There are well over 100 VPN providers being used by people all over the world today. So I took it upon myself to review the most popular ones and conduct these detailed comparisons. 

With that knowledge and experience under my belt, I have been able to weed out the worst and the best, with one service provider coming out on top across all the most important factors to consider when using a VPN. That provider is ExpressVPN:

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​More Top VPN Comparisons

Review Date
Reviewed Item
IPVanish vs PIA (Private Internet Access)
Author Rating

27 Answers

    1. Chris Beattie
      November 14, 2017 at 8:22 am

      Hey James, you are correct. There is not much difference between these two – but the extra server locations really add to the overall service you get with IPVanish, so it makes sense that they reflect this in the price.

  1. sandy
    November 14, 2017 at 8:18 am

    I disagree with the speeds here. In my experience i found ipvanish to be much faster than pia. not using speeds testing, just my personal experience on them.

  2. Cassie J.
    February 1, 2018 at 5:24 am

    Ipvanish​ ​vs​ ​pia huh? Finally, a side to side comparison between these two. With that said, I would go to Pia because it is way cheaper about 37 USD more. with features not that different the price can be a breaker.

  3. E. Charles
    February 1, 2018 at 5:49 am

    I may have to disagree with the verdict here Pia​ ​vs​ ​ipvanish, I pick Pia . I mean I doubt that anyone will be so keen about the unblocking and server numbers. What counts to me is how well it does its job.

  4. G. Mack
    February 1, 2018 at 7:00 am

    U can somehow see why using speed as a factor can be an outlier because giving verdict on this
    ipvanish​ ​vs​ ​private​ ​internet​ ​access can be somewhat unreliable. What if your connection just happen to be slow?

  5. Zineta Velic
    February 1, 2018 at 7:40 am

    Private​ ​internet​ ​access​ ​vs​ ​ipvanish? To be honest it is not easy to come into a conclusion. In my case, I have not have the time to use both so for now, I will take this review at phase value.

  6. Racquel
    February 1, 2018 at 8:18 am

    I swear I have VPN on my system at least not this in depth. Comparative head to head is always better for us to know which is which. Although it boils down to choice and preference.

  7. Alice B.
    February 2, 2018 at 4:04 am

    There can never be a definitive answer to this. For one its consumer is different and that also affects how we see this. As of now I cannot agree nor disagree. I have to use it first.

  8. T. Hicks
    February 2, 2018 at 4:29 am

    I have not come across either brands but this is a great overview. As of now though I go for PIa. I may change my mind once I use Vanish.

  9. Nancy Earabino
    February 2, 2018 at 4:53 am

    i am looking at this in a pricing standpoint. That over 10 USD difference might sway on lookers. I mean people love discounts regardless of what item it is.

  10. D. Hoang
    February 2, 2018 at 5:18 am

    If number of locations are a factor for this ipvanish​ ​vs​ ​pia comparison then better forget it. Over 20 USD difference for a server? No way sorry.

  11. Jillian
    February 2, 2018 at 5:44 am

    This is not an easy thing to decide. pia​ ​vs​ well I know the stats are out but to me I would rather try using it first before taking any word of it.

  12. Joseph
    February 2, 2018 at 8:37 am

    This is a very timely guide nordvpn​ ​vs​ ​ipvanish ??? This is really rare for you to have a comparative article. For your first one, I think you did a good job.

  13. Roderick S.
    February 2, 2018 at 9:06 am

    I am a user of PIa for awhile now and it has been a blast so far. Needless to say in this pia​ ​vs​ ​ipvanish debate I will be with Pia sure locators can be limited but that is more of a nitpick than a concern to me.

  14. Janet W.
    February 2, 2018 at 9:50 am

    Why is this ipvanish​ ​vs​ ​private​ ​internet​ ​access even an argument? We are given a unique overview of the two products. If I were a buyer I will ask for a week of testing it first before making a verdict.

  15. Lois
    February 2, 2018 at 10:40 pm

    In this argument of private​ ​internet​ ​access​ ​vs​ ​ipvanish, The winner will be decided by the users rather than the specs. That is just my opinion though. It would be good if users of these products would come and post here.

  16. Jorge Calles
    February 2, 2018 at 11:13 pm

    Ipvanish​ ​vs​ ​pia is a lot more decisive than the other products being compared. Not to mention names but this is a lot easier to see than the other one.

  17. Angel R.
    February 2, 2018 at 11:50 pm

    I agree with the verdict for Vanish. However, in this pia​ ​vs​ ​ipvanish discussion. It is important to say that I have nothing against PIA. I am just siding with the winner.

  18. Johnnie G.
    February 3, 2018 at 12:55 am

    I think this article is for or should be for clients of both products. Ipvanish​ ​vs​ ​private​ ​internet​ ​access who really is the best? Well let us see.

  19. Malik
    February 3, 2018 at 1:40 am

    This discussion is perfect for those would be VPN clients. With that said, private​ ​internet​ ​access​ ​vs​ ​ipvanish? Well as someone who does not know tech that deeply. I say pia because of economic reasons. To be honest I am not into that blocking thing so I am considering the price as a deal changer.

  20. Daniel S.
    February 3, 2018 at 2:03 am

    A lot of VPN products these days so this is bound to happen. As for me I may as well sit this one out for now. An aniivirus VPN is enough for me.

  21. Michael
    February 3, 2018 at 2:30 am

    This is not applicable to me sadly. Nor because I have gripes against this but rather because the basics are already there. I have cable so I do not see the need for many channels. Besides I am in work often anyway.

  22. CC
    February 3, 2018 at 3:38 am

    I go for security than anything so I guess Pia for me. If it can do the same job as the competition but cheaper? I will take it. Economy matters here ha ha.

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