If you did a DNA test with Ancestry, you might be surprised to know that you can use your Ancestry DNA on other sites. In fact, this is a really great way to get maximum value for your investment, and for you to learn as much as you possibly can from your DNA. There are several websites that accept Ancestry DNA autosomal transfers. This is a great way to find more DNA matches and learn more about your ancestry.
In this post, you’ll learn about the top sites for uploading DNA from Ancestry. There are several sites that did not make the cut for my list, since I only want to recommend reputable websites where I have also personally uploaded my own DNA. I’ll update this list as it becomes appropriate.
Before you get started, you’ll need to download your DNA file from Ancestry. None of the companies on this list are affiliated with Ancestry DNA in any way, and they all allow free uploads – you can’t beat that!
Some sites, like 23 and Me and Ancestry DNA, don’t allow you to transfer your DNA from anywhere else to their website, but you can always download your DNA and upload it to other sites who do allow transfers. In other words, you can’t upload to Ancestry or 23 and Me, but you can upload your Ancestry DNA and 23 and Me data to other sites.
Family Tree DNA
Family Tree DNA (FTDNA) has the second largest database of DNA test takers in the United States, and so is a great website to use if you are looking for DNA matches. Additionally, their database of international test takers is larger than that of Ancestry DNA at this point, so if you are looking for overseas relatives, FTDNA is a great choice. It’s free to do your initial transfer, and you can get access to your DNA matches and their family trees for free. If you are interested in contacting your DNA matches, using the chromosome browser, or getting a “my Origins” ethnicity estimate from FTDNA, you will have to pay $19. If you can afford it, it’s worth paying the $19 to get a “second opinion” about your ethnicity estimate, and of course, to be able to contact your matches.
(Note: If you want to go ahead and get started with your transfer, you can use the following link – I will get a super small commission at no extra cost to you, but it helps me support this website- Click here to transfer your DNA to Family Tree DNA)
Uploading your DNA to FTDNA is best for: Trying to find more DNA matches and being able to compare your DNA to that of your matches at the chromosome level. You also get an additional ethnicity estimate, which is great for comparing with the one that you got from your original testing company.
My Heritage DNA
My Heritage DNA is an exciting “up and coming” major player in the genetic genealogy world. They have a growing autosomal DNA database, and many of their testers are international. I highly recommend uploading to this site if you have ancestors who immigrated to the United States within the past 4-6 generations. I enjoy the layout of the My Heritage website, since it’s really easy to look through matches. You can also see much more information about your DNA matches right from the “View match” screen, which I find very convenient. The My Heritage ethnicity estimate is going to be different than the one that you got from Ancestry, but it doesn’t mean that either one is necessarily “wrong”. Most of the differences are due to the fact that each company defines their regions slightly differently. It also seems like more people have family trees on this site than on some of the other places you can upload, which definitely makes it easier when you are trying to figure out how you are connected to your matches.
Uploading your DNA to My Heritage DNA is best for: Getting access to more DNA matches, especially if your family has a recent international twist, and analyzing your DNA for Jewish ancestry, since My Heritage DNA tests for more Jewish regions than the rest of the companies currently do.
Gedmatch is a free website which accepts uploads from several DNA testing companies. They do not do DNA testing themselves. Instead, they allow users to use a vast variety of tools to analyze their DNA and compare their DNA with that of other users. Gedmatch is a great place to find new DNA matches, since people from other companies will upload their DNA there and you will likely find matches from those companies. Some of the tools that they offer are quite technical, so it’s a great site for those who are really interested in getting as detailed as possible with their DNA. I’m a huge fan of Gedmatch, and I really encourage you to check it out.
Uploading your DNA to Gedmatch is best for: Finding DNA matches who have tested with other companies, comparing your DNA at a detailed level (being able to see exact location on which chromosomes that you match) with other users, and intermediate and advanced DNA analysis tools.
Gedmatch Genesis is associated with Gedmatch, and you can use your Gedmatch login information to access Gedmatch Genesis. The primary difference between Gedmatch and Genesis and the “regular” Gedmatch site is that Gedmatch Genesis is being designed to accept uploads from a larger variety of companies. This means that (almost) no matter where some tested their DNA, they can upload it to Gedmatch Genesis for comparison with others – including you, as an Ancestry DNA user (if you choose to upload your DNA to Gedmatch Genesis, of course). The downside of Gedmatch Genesis, as of March 2018, is that it is still in early stages of is evolution, so it is slightly less “polished” than the main site. I’m sure that over the course of this next year, however, we will see a lot of improvements and exciting changes.
Uploading your DNA to Gedmatch Genesis is best for: People who are adventurous and like to try to new things as soon as they become available, as well as finding matches that tested with companies that can’t currently upload to the main Gedmatch site.
A British company, Living DNA is developing a huge research project where they are trying to create a genetic map of the world, and access to DNA matches sometime towards the middle of this year. You can access the research project here: Living DNA One Family One World research project. While I didn’t read the fine print (oops), I am assuming that the research project submissions will also make up their initial database for autosomal comparisons, which they plan to offer soon. I’m cool with that – I need as many DNA matches as possible to help me break past some of my bricks walls in my family tree. I’m also patient, so I don’t mind waiting until later on this year to get my matches.
If you are interested in this, I suggest getting started soon. I uploaded mine in March, and I got an estimated completion date of August 6, 2018.
There is one item of note that I’d like to bring up in relation to Living DNA. This company also offers mtDNA and Y-DNA, plus autosomal data, for people who test their DNA with them. They have a special for the whole year of 2018, and are offering the test for $99. This is an excellent price for the mtDNA, Y-DNA, and autosomal DNA, and you’ll have access to recent ancestry, distant ancestry, and be able explore your ancient roots (something you can’t do with Ancestry DNA). If you choose to do the upload, you don’t have access to the mt-DNA and Y-DNA, since your DNA results that you download from Ancestry don’t include this information.
If you think you might be interested in this, you can use the following link (I will receive a small commission at absolutely no extra cost to you, and it really helps me support this website – thank you!!): Shop now for great savings on Living DNA test, was $159, now only $99!
(Note that females cannot receive Y-DNA results, but they can get results for mt-DNA and autosomal DNA. The reason for this is because females do not have a Y chromosome.)
Uploading your DNA to Living DNA is best for: Those test takers with primarily European ancestry, and curious people who don’t mind contributing their DNA for an interesting and worthy cause (creating the genetic world map).
If you are interested in learning a little bit about certain genes and traits that you have inherited from your parents, you might find Gene Heritage entertaining and informative. It definitely won’t help you build your family tree, but it is kind of cool to know that you have the lactose intolerance gene or are extra sensitive to the bitter taste of asparagus, and that it isn’t your imagination that you seem to flush when you drink alcohol. The reports are inexpensive (they start at $8), and you can upgrade to a Parent/Child report to see how you inherited these genes from your parents.
I hope that this post gave you some ideas about what you might be able to do with your Ancestry DNA outside of Ancestry. If you know of something really neat that you can do with it, let me know and I’ll add it to my list here.
Thanks for stopping by!