Even though My Expat Network just started in 2011, it’s already very popular and has plenty of positive reviews. However, after comparing it to top performing VPNs on the market through rigorous tests, I was pretty disappointed.
My Expat Network is ideal if you want to bypass geo-restrictions on streaming services. But sadly, you can only unblock content in 12 countries: the UK, the US, Australia, Canada, Denmark, France, Germany, Sweden, Norway, Netherlands, Italy, and Spain.
In terms of security, I’m not confident that it really keeps you anonymous as it logs identifying information like your IP address (which gives away your real location).
Luckily, My Expat Network offers a 30-day money-back guarantee so you can test it for yourself and make the final call.
My Expat Network is focused on unblocking streaming platforms in 12 countries and did a pretty good job, but the speeds are too low to allow full HD streaming unless you have super-fast internet.
The website has a TV Guide with links to the streaming platforms My Expat Network can access. It unblocked all the platforms I tested it on except for Amazon Prime Video. The US servers also struggled for a while with Disney+ but worked after refreshing the connection a few times.
My Expat Network unblocked Netflix in all 12 countries. Both primary and stealth servers bypass Netflix’s geo-restrictions.
My Expat Network unblocks Disney+ on 11 of the 12 countries it serves — Denmark servers don’t work because Disney+ isn’t available in the country.
For Disney+, the primary servers failed to connect to the platform 9 out of 10 times, but stealth servers always bypassed the geo-block.
Hulu is strictly not available outside the US, but My Expat Network quickly bypassed its restrictions. Both stealth and primary servers fared well against the geo-blocks.
My Expat Network was able to unblock HBO NOW using both primary and stealth servers. Just about 20 seconds after connecting to either server, I was able to access the movie library. This VPN is very slow though. I could only watch movies in grainy standard quality. There wasn’t too much buffering, but don’t expect to watch high quality movies through My Expat Network.
My Expat Network doesn’t bypass Prime Video’s geo-restrictions. Amazon’s algorithms could detect that I was using a proxy every time I tried to connect to the platform using this VPN. I tested all 24 servers (12 primary and 12 stealth) and nothing got past the restrictions.
My Expat Network’s speeds are very low, and I couldn’t stream in HD on any platform.
I tested speeds across all servers and noticed an average 85% drop in speeds. The closest server to me was Australia, which surprisingly recorded an 87% speed decrease. The US servers were about triple the distance but were much faster — they still had a 60% drop in speeds though. Even with the fastest connection, you’ll still need high-speed internet if you want bufferless streaming with My Expat Network.
Latency was also too high for reliable gaming with My Expat Network. Before I connected to the VPN, latency was 8 ms, but it jumped to over 200 ms with every server. This is bad news if you’re a gamer because it will take too much time for commands and actions to reach the game server, so you have to compete against people whose movements are much faster and smoother than yours.
I couldn’t connect to Ookla for speed tests while connected to this VPN, but I found another equally trustworthy speed testing site.
Instead of settling for high latency and low speeds, there are several premium VPN providers that have speeds fast enough for gaming.
Speed determines how fast content uploads, so if you're torrenting or streaming, you want the speed to be somewhat identical to your regular internet speed. Since a VPN encrypts your data, it usually takes a bit longer to send your data back and forth, which can slow down your connection. However, if your ISP deliberately slows down your connection (also known as throttling) a VPN might increase your internet speed. Testing a VPN is somewhat pointless because new servers pop up and affect speed. Your speed can also differ according to your location, so your speed test might not match ours. Having said that, we tested the speed in numerous locations to provide you with the average.
My Expat Network claims to have 120 servers, which is too limited for a VPN that claims to unblock content worldwide. After thorough testing, the server numbers are far lower than what the company claims. This VPN serves 12 countries, and each has 2 connections, a primary server, and a stealth server. The stealth server adds an extra layer of obfuscation to your IP, allowing you to unblock more geo-restricted content.
You should avoid stealth servers when streaming unless you’re facing advanced geo-blocks that the primary servers can’t bypass. The extra security layer makes stealth servers significantly slower than their primary counterparts.
Both primary and stealth servers assign you the same IP address. This is worrying if a platform flags either connection, since both servers will be blocked. I also repeatedly tried to refresh my connection across all servers and I was always assigned the same IP addresses. This suggests that My Expat Network allowed me access to only 12 different virtual locations.
This was a shocking find and I took it up with the help desk. They told me that it was highly unlikely and that the issue was probably caused by a program on their end that didn’t load properly. nother member of my team got the exact same IPs during testing.
I even canceled my subscription and paid for a new one to see if it was a problem with my specific account, but I still had access to only 12 IP addresses even with the new details.
120 servers are already too limited for a streaming VPN because they increase the risk of overcrowding, which leads to downtimes. These findings suggest that the server number is either far lower than that, or you only get access to 12 servers with each subscription. Both scenarios make it very difficult to recommend this VPN for anything, especially given the price.
My Expat Network employs some of the industry’s best security features to date, but that comes at the expense of speed across all servers. It uses AES-256 encryption, which is one of the best security features today to enhance your data security.
Windows and macOS apps use OpenVPN protocol, which is well-documented to secure data and keep it off the hands of hackers and other cybersecurity threats. Android systems use the equally powerful IKEv2 protocol.
With these advanced layers of security, a slowdown is to be expected. Most premium VPNs employ these security protocols without losing too much on speed, but My Expat Network couldn’t manage.
Also, iOS users can only access primary servers and not the more secure stealth servers. Windows phones that can’t install the VPN require manual installation, which only accommodates the outdated L2TP protocols.
My Expat Network logs too much personal information, and it isn’t very clear about how it uses the data or under what circumstances it would divulge the info to a third-party.
What I found most worrying was the fact that My Expat Network logs your IP address. It also collects your name and contact information during the sign-up and payment process.
To be fair, My Expat Network doesn’t seem to market itself on anonymity but rather streaming capability. If you’re after privacy, you should look elsewhere.
The servers in the Netherlands allow torrenting, but the speeds are too slow for you to download large files.
Customer support insists that the VPN bypasses the restrictive algorithms in China, but couldn’t specify where. Since I’m not physically located in China, I asked a team member in Xi’an if they could test My Expat Network’s performance. After thorough testing, they couldn’t bypass the censorship in China using My Expat Network.
I would have been surprised if My Expat Network worked because China has very advanced algorithms to restrict and regulate internet access, and even premium VPNs struggle with these barriers to internet access. However, there are several premium VPNs that successfully get around China’s firewalls and provide secure service from the region.
My Expat Network VPN is already slow, but I still noticed significant drops when I connected all my devices — 1 Windows PC, 1 iPhone, 1 MacBook Pro, and 1 Android phone.
The US primary server was my fastest connection, but the speed dropped by over 45% when all 5 devices were connected. Connecting through a single device had already resulted in an average speed drop of 60%. My internet isn’t very fast, so I could only browse lightly when connected to more than 1 device.
My Expat Network has dedicated apps for Windows, Android, macOS, iOS, Linux, Ubuntu, and Amazon Fire TV.
This VPN can also be installed directly into DD-WRT routers, which can be bought preinstalled with the VPN from the company. With the router, you get unlimited device connections and you can use the VPN on unsupported media devices like PS4, Xbox, Nintendo Switch, and Apple TV.
Installation is very straightforward — all I had to do was log into my account, which directed me to the install page where I downloaded the software. The Install Wizard was very helpful, and I was through with setup in under 5 minutes.
Using My Expat Network isn’t as intuitive as other VPNs. Instead of having a standard desktop GUI, accessing the server list requires you to go into the system tray and find the minimized icon for the software. Then you can select the server you’d like to use on the list of servers. This is a little confusing at first, but I got used to it eventually.
My Expat Network doesn’t have a live chat or phone number for real-time assistance. Customer help is only accessible via email support, and they typically reply within the hour. I got an email notification immediately I opened a ticket and an agent contacted me after about 45 minutes.
It has a limited knowledge base made up of installation guides to help you set up My Expat Network on a variety of devices. There’s also a Free Installation service, where customers can schedule a technical support representative to remote into their system and install the VPN for them.
I appreciated the help desk because it was available in 9 languages to match the national dialects of the 12 countries it serves: Danish, French, German, Italian, Dutch, Norwegian, Swedish, and Spanish.
We personally test the customer support team of every VPN we review. This means asking technical question through the live chat feature (where applicable) and measuring the response time for email questions. Whether you need to connect to a specific server, change your security protocol, or configure a VPN on your router, finding a VPN with quality customer support should be important to you.
Even though My Expat Network offers 3 payment options (debit card, credit card, and PayPal), it still has a relatively high cost for a sub-premium VPN. There are several premium VPN providers that offer similar performance at competitive prices, with stronger security features, faster speeds, and more servers.
My Expat Network has a 30-day money-back guarantee with no questions asked. I tested it by first canceling my subscription in the account. Cancellation just stopped the recurring payments but didn’t automatically process my refund.
To get the money back, you have to request it via an email ticket without a reason for cancelling. My refund request was approved within an hour of my request and I had my money back in my PayPal account in under 48 hours.
My Expat Network does a decent job unblocking most streaming platforms, but it’s far from being the cheapest or most reliable option on the market. The servers are very slow, and you should expect drops in speed of up to 80% when connected to its servers.
This VPN services only 12 countries which is very limited for the price. There are several premium VPNs out there that provide better service for a comparative price.
Unfortunately no, My Expat Network offers too few servers and logs too much information for a VPN in its price range. It’s a streaming VPN but you can’t even stream in HD because its servers are too slow. The server numbers are also far lower than the 120 listed on the website. This means you run the risk of working with overcrowded servers which further slow down your internet speed.
My Expat Network doesn’t have a free version but it offers a genuine 30-day no questions asked money-back guarantee. I tested it out by asking for my money back via email and there were no attempts to make me stay.
You won’t get in legal trouble for using My Expat Network in countries that allow VPNs. Countries like Belarus ban all VPNs while China and Russia only allow “government approved VPNs” to operate. Using Expat VPN for legal activities should be safe in most countries though.
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