What can you do on AncestryDNA without a subscription? Should you subscribe to Ancestry? What DNA tools come with an Ancestry subscription (or the free trial)?
There is a lot to discover on Ancestry’s site, especially with your DNA test, but Ancestry does require a paid membership to access the full benefits of their DNA tools and features. Fortunately, Ancestry offers a free two-week trial. In this post, we’ll explain how to get the most out of an Ancestry two-week free trial subscription.
Before you get started with an Ancestry subscription, you’ll want to make sure you know about DNA testing and family history.
AncestryDNA without a subscription
You should know that AncestryDNA’s full suite of genetic genealogy tools is most powerful when combined with an accompanying subscription to Ancestry.com, where you find millions of genealogical records.
Your genetic genealogy experience = DNA test + genealogy records
At Ancestry, this = AncestryDNA test + genealogy subscription
When you view your DNA results with a free account, you will be able to access: your ethnicity estimate, a list of your AncestryDNA matches and the ability to contact them, your shared DNA and shared matches, limited information on common ancestors and shared surnames with your matches, and AncestryDNA Traits (if you purchase the latter separately). You have limited access to ThruLines, the site’s powerful tree reconstruction tool: with your free membership, you can see names, genders, birth and death years, relationships to you, and potential ancestors, but not related genealogical records and matches’ trees.
It’s certainly enough to get you started on DNA discoveries! But if you’re serious about getting the most information out of DNA testing and building your family tree, you’ll want to consider an Ancestry.com subscription.*
Your subscription to Ancestry.com’s historical records ALSO boosts your DNA test results by providing access to:
- Matches’ family trees (a free membership is limited to a 5 generation preview);
- More information on common ancestors: records and trees’ matches (a free membership is limited to names, genders, birth and death years, and relationships to you);
- up to 7 generations of shared surnames (a free membership will only see up to 5 surnames);
- shared ancestor birth locations (a free membership is limited to names and birth locations);
- the full ThruLines experience, including related genealogical records and matches’ trees
Understand your subscription options
One of Ancestry’s greatest benefits is their access to historical records: census records, birth records, draft cards, and more. These help build your family tree and identify your DNA matches’ relationships to you. Depending on the membership you choose, you’ll have access to various records:
- [Country-level] Discovery gives you access to all genealogical records for a specific country (Options include: United States, United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, Germany, France, Italy, Sweden and Mexico)
- World Explorer offers access to all genealogical records on Ancestry from around the world
- All Access offers everything on Ancestry, plus everything on Fold3, and Newspapers.com Publisher Extra
Each of these membership types can be paid for monthly, semi-annually, or annually (you can save money if you pay semi-annually or annually). You can select one of these membership types for your free trial.
Build and connect your tree
Using the records you have access to, you can build your family tree. Get started while you’re waiting for your test results!
A paid Ancestry membership allows you to discover historical documents, photos, and stories on Ancestry and attach them to people in your tree. With a free membership, you can build your tree and attach records you can find for free on Ancestry (a limited collection) or that you import from other sources. You can also upload an existing family tree file (.ged) to Ancestry, whether you are a free or subscribing user.
Be sure you attach your Ancestry tree to your DNA results. If you choose to make the tree public, others can find and explore it. You can also keep it private.
Watch your calendar
When you start your free trial, you’ll need to enter a debit or credit card and select the type of subscription you’d like to try. Note that if you do not cancel two days before your free trial ends, the credit or debit card on file will be charged the full amount of that particular membership. You can read more about their Renewal and Cancellation Terms here.
You’re ready to go!
Get started at Ancestry by with your free two-week trial. Build your family tree. Then use it to learn how you’re connected to your DNA matches!
Need to activate an AncestryDNA test kit? Learn how to activate your kit here.