Monday, March 22, 2010

Ancestral DNA and African-American Research

Part III – Evaluating Testing Companies and Ways to Save Money

Evaluating Testing Companies

I'm feeling a bit lazy today, so I hope you don’t mind that I’m choosing to refer you to Emily Aulicino’s DNA-Genealem’s Genetic Genealogy for guidelines on how to evaluate a company. Her post on the subject is very well written. I only wished I had come across it prior to my initial foray into genetic genealogy testing.

Ways to Save Money on Testing

Genetic Genealogy testing is not cheap and costs can add up quickly, so here are a few ideas for ways to save a few dollars.

  • Take part in a project – Becoming a member of a surname or geographic project is one way of saving a few dollars. The projects focus on the ancestry of persons with a specified surname or from a specified geographical area.

  • Pool Your Resources – Miriam Midkiff of AnceStories: The Stories of My Ancestors presents one way to save money. Family members who are interested in testing can select one person to do the testing but everyone chip in to help defray the cost of the testing.

  • Wait for a Sale – Testing companies are typically have a sale one to two times per year. The only drawback to this is that everyone is waiting for the sale, too, so sometimes the company may get slammed. An example of this is the end of year sale that Family Tree DNA ran on the full sequence mtDNA test. The price was literally cut in half and the response, per Family Tree DNA, was greater than anticipated.

To Be Continued


  1. Great tips, Mavis. Enjoy your lazy day!

  2. When we decided it was time to get involved in the DNA testing to attempt to further my paternal research, my sister and I shared the expense for a 64-marker test. At the time I think the test was about $250. Sharing the expense to have my Dad test was the best thing we did! While neither of us could comfortably afford the whole test, we both had the funds at the time to pay for half!
    Unfortunately, the test has not helped us to date. But we still have high hopes!

  3. Wow! You have worked really hard to bring us all this information! Lazy? I say not! I have learned a lot from reading your posts. I have yet to take the step into DNA testing, but it is definitely something I want to do someday. You have some great ideas to cut costs. I will have to keep those in mind! Great series of posts! :)


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