MyHeritage: A Comprehensive Review
MyHeritage is one of the world’s premier ancestry DNA testing companies, which has recently expanded into health and wellness testing as well! MyHeritage is a one-stop-shop to learn about different genetic predispositions you may carry and a world leader in DNA-based family tree building services. Plus, with MyHeritage, you can access one of the world’s largest treasure-troves of historical records to validate your DNA findings! To get the full shakedown on one of the best DNA tests, keep reading.
What you can get from MyHeritage
MyHeritage lets you explore your DNA a few different ways:
MyHeritage DNA kits allow you to learn more about your genetic genealogy, while also giving you access to over 28 reports on your health and wellness-related DNA traits. This is not quite as many as 23andMe offers, but they are informative DNA results nonetheless.
In addition to all these great health reports, you can also get access to one of the world’s best family tree and ancestry DNA companies. MyHeritage started as a software company, designing some of the first computer-based family trees. That was decades ago. Today, the company has leveraged the power of a DNA testing company to turn its massive family tree platform into one of the most powerful DNA databases in the world.
You can learn about where your genes came from in an ethnicity estimate, how your family may have migrated across the globe, and even historical figures and ethnic groups you may be related to. The site also has a chromosome browser for exploring the structure your DNA testing kit revealed and show you how DNA ancestry relates to your actual chromosomes.
Plus, Ancestry.com is the only site to match the size of MyHeritage’s historical database for researching your family members. MyHeritage records are more focused on the European countries, which is great if your ancestors immigrated from Ireland, but less useful if your ancestors were Native American. Those with Irish, Scottish, Scandinavian, or Welsh relatives (and other European ethnic regions) will find a wealth of historical records. Who knows? You could find some new relatives or a common ancestor!
The company will send you a simple cheek swab, and that’s all you need to get started. The swab will take your DNA sample, which the lab can perform genetic testing on. Send your DNA test kit back, and your autosomal DNA test results should arrive in around 6-8 weeks. Note that MyHeritage does not test mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) or Y-chromosome SNPs.
While you can build a simple family tree and research the free documents within the MyHeritage archives, you will have to pay to get access to the more powerful research tools offered. These include improved DNA matches, the ability to build out a much larger family tree, and access to the full archive of historical records to discover your family history.
Plans are complicated, though they start at around $130/year and max out at $300/year for access to all the ancestry tools and archives. This high-end option gives you access to billions of historical records, marriage certificates, birth records, and even documents like traveler’s logs!
MyHeritage User Reviews
Overall, users are happy with their MyHeritage experience. Users seem thrilled with the family tree service, as well as DNA matching. Users looking for genetic genealogy research tend to be the happiest. One user had found over 70,000 relatives over the course of 8 years of research and a simple cheek swab!
However, more general users and those looking specifically for health information seemed to find the service lacking in certain areas. Some users seemed to think that the historical records database and advanced ancestry tools were available with an Ancestry DNA kit, which they are not. That being said, over 70% of users found the service to be at or above average. You can check out the reviews yourself, below.
- 3.5 of 5 stars on Trustpilot, with over 5,100 reviews
- 3.8 of 5 stars on Amazon, with over 1000 reviews
- See a discussion of MyHeritage vs. 23andMe at the following Reddit page.
Upload your Raw DNA Data
If you want to see if you have any DNA matches or living family members on the MyHeritage website, you can upload your raw DNA data for free to check. After your upload, you can also upgrade to get access to any of the other reports or features offered by the company.
However, if you already have your raw data and are looking for a place to use it, check out these sites. With the sites below, you can get find family matches, learn about nutrition, work on your fitness, and find out many other health-related genetic traits!
To find out more DNA upload sites, check out our article "The Best DNA Upload Sites"