This post contains affiliate links if clicked on I may receive a small commission to support this blog.I recently purchased a ConnectMyDNA test kit through a Living Social deal. If you're not familiar with Living Social, they're a deal site like Groupon. Having done a DNA test through Ancestry for myself, I thought it would be fun to do one for another family member. In short, don't waste your money on the ConnectMyDNA test.
While the price for the ConnectMyDNA test starts at about a third the cost of an Ancestry DNA test, having seen what you get from a full DNA test like from Ancestry, the information generated from ConnectMyDNA is practically useless, even when you upgrade to the full set of tests.
The way the ConnectMyDNA test works is simple. After buying a kit online, you're sent an envelope in the mail to collect a sample and return. To collect the sample, you swab the inside of your cheeks. Once you put the cotton swabs in the envelope, tape it closed. Do not lick the envelope. You don't want to potentially contaminate the sample when they retrieve. You then wait. You're given a code to check your test results online. Once you register the code, you'll be notified when the results become available.
When you buy the kit, you identify which areas of the world to test you against. The more areas you want to test against, the higher the price. They offer five different areas to test against: Europe, Middle East / North Africa, Africa, Central / South America, and Asia. It is important to point out that just because you pick an area like Asia doesn't mean you're compared against ALL the countries of Asia, only those that they've decided to include.
When you get the results back, you get this really cool Gene Ring graphic you can post to your social media, and a list of the single most popular countries you align with for each region you pay for. In other words, if you have one Irish parent and one Italian parent, the European report from ConnectMyDNA will report which of the two is more predominant only. With the Ancestry test, you're told the percentage of each.
The Ancestry report test tells me I have less than 1% of me from a small region in the south Pacific, Melanesia. If I were to run myself against the ConnectMyDNA report, it might identify that region as the winning country for Asia, since I have no other Asian ancestry in me. However, their report doesn't even cover that area, so more than likely I'd get a big goose egg for Asia instead. If you consider the percentage as an important part of your DNA, it is totally missing from the ConncetMyDNA results.
While the price for a ConnectMyDNA test after a deal from a site like Living Social sounds tempting, working with the results from just the 13 markers they pick is practically worthless. Yes, they claim their test isn't meant to be used for ancestry purposes, but if not used for that, why get it.
If you're interested in a real DNA test, do check out the DNA testing from Ancestry. You're testing against 26 different regions there instead of just the five for ConnectMyDNA. More importantly though, you're told the percentage and likelihood for each country in the region, not just the top one.
The DNA testing link for Ancestry is an affiliate link. I did not write the article to push you towards that test, but more importantly wanted to push you away from the ConnectMyDNA testing. It just isn't worth the cost for the information you get. For an additional opinion on the ConenctMyDNA test from a genealogist, see the A DNA test not to bother with article from The Legal Genealogist blog from 2012. I wish I read it before I purchased the kit. I was so disappointed with the results that I hunted out reviews after the fact.
Besides the ethnicity breakdown, the thing I like most about the Ancestry results is the genetic connections you can find with other members of the site. At least once a month if not once a week I discover a new cousin who recently got their test results. Typically, they're like sixth or seventh cousins I had no knowledge of, but I did have one nephew get tested/connected, too.
The thing I want to do most next is get a Y-DNA test done to trace back my father's line.
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