Friday, 27 October 2017

23andMe now offers an ancestry-only DNA test in Europe and Canada

23andMe offer a very interesting test which includes both health and ancestry reports. However, because of the high cost of the test, it has never been practical to use it in the UK for genealogy purposes. Our American friends have had the option to buy an ancestry-only test for $99 for a while now but that facility has not been available in other countries. That situation has all changed some time in the last few days though we don't know exactly when this change was rolled out. In the countries where 23andMe offer health reports it is now possible to order an ancestry-only test at a lower and affordable price. Here are the new prices.

Country Ancestry Ancestry and health Return shipping
UK £79 £149 £9.99
Denmark, Finland, Ireland, Sweden and the Netherlands   €99  €169  €9.99
Canada C$129 C$249 C$19.95
US $99 $199 $9.95

For the remaining countries where the 23andMe test is sold, an international ancestry-only test is available for US $99 plus shipping. The cost of the international test has also been reduced in recent months. Previously this test cost $149 outside the US. Shipping costs vary from country to country, but these costs have also been greatly reduced. You can find full details of international availability and shipping costs by country on the 23andMe page in the ISOGG Wiki.

These reduced prices are really good news for genetic genealogists. At £79 the 23andMe test represents very good value for money. In addition to receiving cousin matches and a biogeographical ancestry analysis, the test will also give you haplogroup assignments (Y-DNA and mtDNA for males; mtDNA only for females). The Y-DNA and mtDNA reports can't be used for matching purposes but they are very useful if you just want a general overview of your ancestry. 23andMe are also the only genetic genealogy company that provides reports on your Neanderthal ancestry.

Here is a screenshot of my 23andMe ancestry reports.
This is an extract from my Neanderthal ancestry report. There is a lot more detail in these reports which there is not space to include here.

The Neanderthal report also includes this chromosome map showing the location of the Neanderthal variants in your genome.
It was reported recently that 23andMe are going to embark on an advertising blitz to "dramatically expand" their customer base to 10 million people. Let's hope that the launch of the ancestry-only test will encourage many new people to test with 23andMe, and help to expand the customer database outside the US.

Thanks to Michelle Leonard for alerting me to the introduction of 23andMe's new ancestry-only tests. You can read Michelle's blog post on the subject here.

No comments: