Interested in Ancestry DNA reviews? Here’s what we thought about our Ancestry DNA tests.
They were running a 30% off sale and I had been wanting to try it out for some time. Mostly because I’m curious what it would show, though I know most of my ancestral roots via pretty detailed family trees that go back several generations on both my father and my mother’s side.
I also convinced my sister to buy a kit for herself, her daughter, her son, and her husband too.
Here’s a little of our experience with Ancestry DNA testing and our review of Ancestry DNA overall.
Why Ancestry DNA?
I use Ancestry.com often as I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and so I’m granted a “LDS-Ancestry Subscription.”
It doesn’t give me full access to everything on Ancestry.com, but I do get all the US records. This means, I already knew about their amazing database of family history information and trusted them as a great place for all things ancestors!
Because Ancestry.com is such a huge website with millions of users, and over 80 million family trees, taking a DNA Test through them gave me an edge up in connecting with other DNA test takers and instantly sharing our family trees with each other if and when we did find each other.
In fact, more than 5 million people have taken DNA tests through Ancestry DNA. This means they also have a lot of data when it comes to tracing DNA origins as well.
The Ancestry DNA test covers 26 regions and explores Genetic Communities. .
Whenever I thought about where to get DNA testing done, Ancestry DNA was the first choice that always came to mind.
How to Take a DNA Test from Ancestry.com
It’s super easy to take and submit a DNA test from Ancestry.com. No blood work required!
First, place your Ancestry DNA order, wait for your boxed kit to come in the mail in a few days, and then follow the instructions they provide in the package. Order it, receive
You will register your sample online before you ship it back to Ancestry labs.
After you’ve registered, you’ll need to do your DNA sample collection! All it involves is spitting in a provided tube. You cannot eat or drink for 30 minutes before taking your test. You will fill up the vial with spit so that it reaches the line on the outside of the tube.
Then you’ll put the lid onto the tube which contains the DNA stabilizing solution. Simply close it tight enough so you hear it click and see the blue liquid fall down in your spit, then shake it up! Once that’s done you slip it into the provided packaging and drop it off at your local post office.
The shipping is free. Now, wait for your results in several weeks via email!
Ancestry DNA Review
Because of the great holiday sale last year, it took a very long time for my husband and me to get our results back, even though we sent them in over our Christmas break.
They received our results on January 13 and I didn’t get our results back until March 16. My husband got his results a day or two after I did.
Typically, your AncestryDNA test results will normally take about 6-8 weeks to process from the time that the lab receives your DNA sample, but due to high demand, may take longer than 8 weeks.
You must also activate your DNA kit online in order to begin processing.
When you’re waiting to discover who you really are, 8+ weeks seems like an eternity! But, I guess our wait time wasn’t really longer than most can expect.
Ancestry DNA Test Results
There are few different reports and information you receive when you get your Ancestry DNA Test Results back.
There’s the Genetic Ethnicity breakdown most of us are dying to know, and then the Genetic Communities that help pinpoint different common ancestors and migration patterns, and lastly DNA matches from the database where you may discover long-lost cousins and other relations!
AncestryDNA Genetic Ethnicity Estimates Results
My results from Ancestry DNA tests were pretty amazing in that my Genetic Ethnicity was 96% Great Britain!
I think I’m more British than the Queen!
I knew I had a lot of English heritage as my own maternal grandmother immigrated from England in her 30’s. And my father has strong English roots as well.
But, it ignores my fairly strong Irish and Swedish roots too.
And that’s the thing about these DNA tests. They give you geographical areas, and it’s often a very large area!
Because this “Great Britain” area is primarily located in England, Scotland and Wales, but also found in Ireland, France, Germany, Denmark, Belgium, Netherlands, Switzerland, Austria, and Italy, many countries I have known ancestors from.
So, my results aren’t wrong, they just aren’t super detailed in my Ancestry DNA report. Which was a bit disappointing.
However, my remaining 4% of my Ethnicity estimate showed:
- 2% Europen Jewish
- <1% Finland/Northwest Russia
- <1% Italy/Greece
- <1% Ireland
It’s amazing to learn that I do indeed have Jewish ancestry! It’s been a bit of family history lore that some of our predecessors were Jews, as we haven’t been able to exactly pinpoint who or on which line(s).
But, again, it’s hard to believe I have less than 1% of my ethnicity from Ireland and other areas! My Great-Great Grandfather immigrated to America from Ireland. A different Great-Great Grandfather was born in Germany and immigrated to America. And yet another Great-Great Grandfather was born in Sweden who immigrated to America!
My husband’s Ancestry DNA results were much more diverse than mine: he is a true European mutt! His results were:
- 25% Europe East
- 16% Scandinavia
- 16% Iberian Peninsula
- 15% Europe West
- 13% Ireland
- 7% Italy/Greece
- 7% Great Britain
- 1% West Asia/Caucasus
- <1% Finland/Northwest Russia
What’s somewhat surprising is that he doesn’t show any Jewish ancestry, which we both thought he had some. Nor does it show any Native American which he is rumored to have as well (though Native Americans are hard to show strong traces to). Most of the rest of the countries we knew he had ties to, though we still haven’t been fully able to trace the Fagan name back to Ireland, though that is supposedly where it originated.
AncestryDNA Genetic Communities
From the Ancestry.com website:
“Genetic Communities™ are groups of AncestryDNA members who are connected through DNA most likely because they descend from a population of common ancestors, even if they no longer live in the area where those ancestors once lived.
For example, some Genetic Communities trace their roots back to groups of people who were isolated geographically. Mountains, rivers, lack of roads, or other barriers made it likely that each new generation would marry someone who lived close to home. Others have their roots in groups who typically married others of the same religion or ethnic group. In each case, these groups came to share a significant amount of DNA. Modern-day descendants who inherited some of that DNA make up Genetic Communities.”
My husband, on the other hand, had two different Genetic Communities (he was not raised a Mormon and doesn’t have Mormon ancestry). He has French Settlers Along the St. Lawrence and Early Settlers of Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Indiana!
Considering we have discovered many ancestors of his who lived in Quebec, Canada, this wasn’t super surprising but was still interesting to learn about the background of these people.
His Pennsylvania connection we know some about as well, though wasn’t as strong a link.
Ancestry DNA Matches
Part of the appeal of getting a DNA test done through Ancestry.com is that so many people use Ancestry.com and already have their family trees added to their profiles. This makes discovering lost relatives and connecting missing links in your family tree much easier as you can share your family trees and information easily with each other.
Aside from my sister who took the test (and her daughter), there were three first cousins listed who had also taken an Ancestry DNA test. One of them contacted me and we figured out that he is most likely my half-Uncle that no one in our family ever knew about!
One of them contacted me and we figured out that he is most likely my half-Uncle that no one in our family ever knew about! We’ve since been in contact and my mother and my aunts have swapped pictures with him, helping him end the 70-year long question of who his father was!
My husband had a relative show up who’s shared family tree had more details about a family line that had been stumping us for quite some time which was a huge blessing!
Connecting with people through Ancestry is easy, and they’ll receive an email about the message, hopefully helping you make some new connections like I did!
How Much Does Ancestry DNA Cost?
An Ancestry DNA test costs $99 full-price but they periodically have sales of 10%, 20% and 30% off. I bought my kit and my husband’s kit for Christmas last year during a 30% off sale they were having at the end of November so it was only $69 (plus shipping).
They seem to run sales and Ancestry DNA coupons around holidays, especially ones that have to deal with family members or ethnic origins, so Father’s Day, Mother’s Day, St. Patrick’s Day, Christmas, and Independence Day. They also run a sale on and around National DNA Day every year which is April 25.
They are a cool gift for people who like family history.