Disclaimer: Due to the constant fluctuations of server count, these numbers may not be entirely accurate. Here you may check all the current numbers updated live.
A virtual private network may support many different protocols and have multiple protective layers to avoid IP and DNS leaks, but if it has only a few servers, it will simply not function. This is one of the reasons why many VPN providers try to have as many servers as possible, while also using their count as a selling point to attract new customers. And while it’s hard to deny the importance of server quantity, it’s the quality and the spread of the network that matters most. That’s why we’re taking a more in-depth look at NordVPN servers in 2020 to see if their self-proclaimed “Best VPN server list for your location” is faking it or making it.
How many NordVPN servers are there in 2020?
While the quality of the servers is more important than the quantity, there is a point at which server count becomes important. And NordVPN, with over 5000, happens to be one of the best in this area. It’s only surpassed by CyberGhost VPN with 6400+ servers, while ExpressVPN, Private Internet Access, and TorGuard lag behind by almost a lap with more than 3,000. Seeing NordVPN constantly improving these numbers leads us to believe that they’re still going to push for the #1 position as they have in the past.
Servers in Europe: 2,000+
|Country||Number||P2P||Obfuscated||Dedicated IP||Double VPN||Onion Over VPN|
|Boznia and Herzegovina||2||+|
Servers in Asia Pacific: 600+
Servers in the Americas: 2,100+
|Country||Number||P2P||Obfuscated||Dedicated IP||Double VPN|
Servers in Africa, the Middle East, and India: 100+
|United Arab Emirates||20+||+|
Another point to remember when counting VPN servers is that not all of them may be physical or dedicated servers. It’s easy to inflate the total number using virtual private servers (VPS) that are running on a machine sharing resources with many other virtual servers. Naturally, VPN providers are reluctant to admit using virtual servers, but some state that they have only physical ones. For example, there are only 300+ servers on the Astrill server list, but all of them are dedicated.
As for NordVPN, it doesn’t brag about all of their servers being physical (we’d be shocked if all 5000 were), but again there’s so many of them that even a portion of VPS doesn’t make the whole dish unpalatable. Besides, it’s normal to have some virtual servers when using a physical one would be problematic (i.e., in China) or when the virtual server can provide better connectivity.
As mentioned previously, quality is the most important thing for any server list. We’ve already discussed the impact of physical and virtual servers. Now it’s time to see how well they are spread on the Earth’s crust.
NordVPN servers provide global coverage
The distance between the client and the server is one of the key factors that influence the latency and speed of the connection. It’s okay if your VPN provider has a server a few hundred miles away from you. But what if that server crashes? Suddenly, you’re left with no alternative that can provide the same bandwidth for streaming or gaming. So while the overall spread is crucial for using your VPN service across the globe, the density is what determines whether you’ll be able to use it effectively.
Where are NordVPN servers concentrated?
With 5000+ servers under its belt, NordVPN seems to have the power to cover the whole planet. Instead, it chooses the regions that have the biggest clientele (that being North America and Europe).
Of all the 59 countries where NordVPN servers reside, more than 80% are in the aforementioned regions. While such a ratio might seem extreme at first, it’s pretty common among all VPN providers, including ExpressVPN and CyberGhost.
Oceania is an important English-speaking market, so NordVPN’s server list is comparatively longer in this region – 200 or 4%, which beats CyberGhost with less than 3%.
Finally, the growing market of India, the Middle East, and Africa is served by 123 servers, which is almost 2.5%. Only here do we see that 3.5% of CyberGhost’s servers provide broader coverage.
So while it’s not always fair to compare different VPN providers when we don’t know how many of their servers are physical or virtual, it still shows that there are gaps on the map where NordVPN’s presence could be felt more.
NordVPN server speed
Based on the number of countries and servers, NordVPN should have no issues providing fast or even very fast connections in most locations. And in fact, it does offer awesome speeds across a wide geography. However, that has more to do with its NordLynx tunneling protocol, which is a proprietary version of the next-gen WireGuard.
Speed is one of the most difficult criteria to judge a VPN by. Starting from your location and internet service provider, continuing with the time of the test and number of repetitions, and ending with your hardware – there are just too many factors to take into account. Therefore, you should test the speed yourself and see if the difference compared to a VPN-less connection is not too big for your needs.
NordVPN servers and streaming
Where NordVPN’s ever-expanding server count really helps is in unblocking Netflix. And we’re talking not only about the US library which we were able to access and stream from Europe in Ultra HD (4K). The UK, Canada, Japan, Australia, and the Netherlands were also available, making NordVPN a great choice for Netflix fans. In addition to that, this applies to other streaming platforms, such as BBC iPlayer or Hulu. Kodi users should also rejoice – with NordVPN’s geo-unblocking ability, they should be able to get the most out of this tool.
NordVPN servers allow torrenting
While you will not be able to torrent with NordVPN while connected to any server, this is for your own good. NordVPN’s P2P-optimized servers are strategically placed in countries like Canada or the Netherlands, which have a more liberal approach to torrenting. When connected to these servers, your P2P traffic won’t be blocked or throttled. What is more, there’s no data transfer limit when using NordVPN servers, so the only thing that can stop you from successful torrenting with NordVPN is you. If you still want to find out more, check our article on torrenting with NordVPN.