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Ancestry Review

Tuesday, February 7th

2023 Genealogy Service Reviews

Top Consumer Reviews Best-In-Class Blue Ribbon Award Ancestry Review 5 Star Rating


5 Star Rating
  • "A+" Better Business Bureau rating
  • Over 100 million family trees
  • World's largest collection of family history records
  • 14-day free trial
  • 2 million records added daily
Top Consumer Reviews Best-In-Class Blue Ribbon Award

In the world of genealogy, Ancestry is one of the most well-known and widely-respected names in the game. They are based in Lehi, Utah and are the largest for-profit genealogy company in the world. Ancestry has invested over $300 million to build the world's largest collection of family history records. Their purpose is to provide individuals with a deeper understanding of who they are, to strengthen their identity and sense of belonging.

Get started with what you know

There are over 27 billion records to be discovered through Ancestry. To get started on their platform, you simply add what you know about yourself and immediate family members and you'll get connected to ancestors and information about your family that matches the details you provide. Small leaf icons will appear as you go through information, alerting you that there is information about one of your ancestors for you to discover. Hints do all of the searching for you and continue to come as you grow your family tree. Over 2 million records are added to Ancestry daily, so the possibilities for learning about your heritage are nearly endless.

Free learning hub

You can view your family tree or create a new one at any time. Ancestry has a free family history learning hub that goes over Genealogy 101, provides information about all types of vital records, and gives an overview of historic events like The Great Depression, Pearl Harbor, and RMS Titanic. You can learn about immigration and the census records in different years to give added perspective to your family history work.

Intuitive website

You can search through Ancestry's 27+ billion records at any time by inputting information you have including names, birthdays, keywords, nationality, and other relevant details. The platform is intuitive and makes it easy to gain fast access to a wealth of information about your family. Whether you're familiar with genealogical work or not, you'll be able to easily use Ancestry and be inspired by what you learn.

Best Genealogy Services

Free trial

Ancestry offers a 14-day free trial to give you a feel for how their platform works, how many records they have available, and what features you can use. This is a great way to decide whether or not to commit to a subscription of their product. There are three membership options to choose from:

  • U.S. Discovery: ($24.99 monthly or $16.50/month with a 6-month membership)
    • Access to all U.S. records on Ancestry
    • Preserve and share your family tree online
  • World Explorer: ($39.99 monthly or $25.83/month with a 6-month membership)
    • Access to all U.S. and international records on Ancestry
    • Preserve and share your family tree online
  • All Access: ($49.99 monthly or $33.16/month with a 6-month membership)
    • Access to all U.S. and international records on Ancestry
    • Preserve and share your family tree online
    • Basic membership to newspapers.com
    • Explore over 537 million records on Fold3, a historical military records website

Cancel anytime

If you want to cancel your membership with Ancestry, you can do so at any time. If you cancel before the end of your 6-month subscription, a $25 fee may apply. The best option is to cancel at least 2 days before your renewal date through your account settings to avoid any fees. Unless you delete your family trees, they will remain on Ancestry's site whether you have a membership or not. If you delete your account, all information related to your account, including family trees you created will be irreversibly erased.

DNA kit from the comfort of home

In addition to genealogical records, Ancestry also offers DNA testing to give you insight about your ethnic heritage and what parts of the world your ancestors lived. For $99, Ancestry will send you a DNA kit that includes a vile for saliva testing to be mailed back to them. For $119 you can get additional information about personal traits that your genes could influence (heart recovery, lactose intolerance, vitamin D, endurance fitness, etc.). Ancestry's DNA kits come with a lot of detailed information and are a popular purchase for individuals as well as a great gift idea.

Top of the line genealogy service

Ancestry has earned our highest rating for genealogy sites because frankly, although there are other useful and impressive genealogy services, they can't yet compete with Ancestry. The Better Business Bureau gives Ancestry an "A+" rating and users throughout the world generally have good things about the usability of the site, vast amount of content, and reliable customer service. If you're interested in genealogy, get started with their free trial right away to see what Ancestry has to offer.

What is the Best Genealogy Service?

Throughout all of time, people have had a deep personal interest in knowing where they came from. Our family, culture, and geography shape who we are, so it provides a unique perspective about ourselves when we are able to trace our ancestors and learn more about the people who came before us. Studying family history has rapidly grown into one of the most popular pastimes for people in the United States.

It hasn't always been simple to trace our roots. In the past, researching a family tree was a lengthy, often painstaking process. Rather than quickly jumping online and doing a few searches, you would have to track down hard copies of vital documents, which often cost as much as $20 each from government agencies.

The Best Genealogy Services Compare Genealogy Services Compare Genealogy Service Reviews What are the best Genealogy Services Best Genealogy Service Reviews

Genealogy Service FAQ

Genealogy is often referred to as family history: it's the study of your ancestors, lineage, and heritage. If you've ever wondered about where your grandparents came from, what family traits have been passed down through the years, or if you're related to someone famous, you've already been interested in genealogy!
There are a lot of reasons why people are interested in their genealogy. Some people are curious to verify old family stories about "the old country" or having "royal blood" . Others hope to connect with living relatives by tracing their ancestry; this is especially common for people who were adopted (or have parents/grandparents who were). And, a growing segment of genealogy researchers are hoping to get dual citizenship by documenting that their family tree has recent connections to another country!
Start with what you know: the names, birth/death dates and places of your parents and grandparents, if you have them. If you still have living relatives, they'll be one of your best sources of information. From there, choose an online genealogy platform that allows you to create a family tree and start entering the details you get. (Even guesses or approximations are okay when you're getting started.) Then, you'll use online databases to find documents that support those facts, like census records or birth certificates, if you don't already have them in your possession.
DNA testing is the biggest trend in genealogy right now, and with good reason: it's one of the most reliable ways to find living relatives, confirm suspected parentage, and even get ethnicity estimates. However, the science is still evolving, so be ready to take any results you get with a grain of salt.
You'll find everything from birth/death/marriage certificates to yearbook photos and beyond when you use a genealogy service. One of the most popular types of genealogical records is the US Census, which documents every household in the nation every 10 years. You can often find details about your relatives' educational level, income, how many children they had, and how long they had been married at the time. Even documents like draft registration records can tell you a person's height, weight, hair and eye color!
There are many genealogical records available at no cost, but the vast majority require you to pay to access them. You could pay for individual documents through county clerks' offices, but it usually makes more sense to subscribe to an online genealogy service that lets you search and view billions of records at your convenience. Most genealogy platforms also make it easy to connect with other people who might be doing research in the same part of the world or with the same family names, and to get help if you get stuck.
Not at all. You can get a subscription for anywhere from $10 to $25 per month, and there are usually discounts if you pay for your plan annually instead of monthly. Most genealogy sites also have different levels of service: for example, if you know that you only need access to records from the United States and not worldwide, you can probably choose a less costly plan than the all-inclusive package.
That's probably one of the most common questions asked by people who are interested in learning about their family tree! Most of us have heard that we descended from royalty, right? It's possible that those family stories are true, but you'll have to start by charting out your family tree to see if you connect with any famous people at some point in the past. The good news is that many famous family trees have already been established, which should make it easier to discover your connection (if there is one).
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Continued from above...

People would travel far to find gravesites of family members to gather what local information they could, read through old journals, and put in hours worth of phone calls to try to connect the dots. Oftentimes language barriers, hard-to-read handwriting on old documents, or distance led genealogical enthusiasts to a dead end.

Thanks to the people who laid the groundwork for genealogy the hard way, online platforms have been created to compile everyone's histories into a simple, searchable database. Since these services have launched, it has opened doors for billions of people to find lost family members and learn about their ancestors. It's never been easier to dive into your genealogy. Some services offer a look into your lineage with just a vial of saliva or swab of the cheek through DNA testing.

As you browse different genealogy services, there are some important things to keep in mind:

  • Features. Are you able to create your own family tree on the website? Can other researchers have access to the family tree to add relevant information? Does the platform allow you to upload photos, documents, stories, and other personal details for individuals on the family tree? How about DNA matches with potential blood relatives?
  • Variety of information. What types of records will you be able to obtain from the genealogy service? Do they have government records (birth and death certificates) as well as published information from news sources submitted by other users? What unique information do they offer that you aren't able to find for free online?
  • Cost. What is the cost to access records on your family tree? Do you pay a one-time fee, or does the service require an ongoing subscription? Are you able to get discounts if you use it long-term?

TopConsumerReviews.com has reviewed and ranked the best genealogy services available online. We hope this information helps you learn more about yourself, reconnect with estranged loved ones, and be inspired by those who came before you.

The Best Reviews of Genealogy Services