Here are some commonly asked questions about the African Ancestry Experience:


  • Our tests place your African ancestry in a present-day country and ethnic group or tribe.
  • We use the largest number of African DNA samples in the industry to analyze your ancestry.
  • We do not maintain a database of customer information.
  • We do not sell or share customers’ personal or genetic information.
  • We do not provide customer information to law enforcement.
  • We do not biobank your genetic material. All genetic material is destroyed at the lab.
  • We analyze mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) and Y Chromosome DNA. We do not use autosomal DNA.

Yes. If your mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) sequence or your Y-chromosome markers have African ancestry, we can tell you what present-day country(ies) and ethnic groups in Africa that they share ancestry with. Please click here for data requirements. We cannot use data from admixture analyses.

For lineage-based tests, reliability depends on several things such as the size of the database, the sampling of the lineages and the accuracy of lineage matches. Our database is the most comprehensive resource of African lineages available. We have worked with historians, archeologists, anthropologists and other geneticists to build the  largest collection of African lineages  in the world. We use a Sequence Similarity Score (SSS) measure to determine matches. The SSS measure is a likelihood estimate based on the frequency of identical and closely related (>99%) haplotypes. It is our degree of confidence in your results. Dr. Kittles explains here.

Our results are highly accurate. For about 85% of the people we test we find identical matches in our database. For the remaining people, we find closely related lineages with greater than 95% confidence. Our database is the most comprehensive resource of African lineages available.

Our tests do not provide percentages. We tell you WHERE in Africa one branch of your family tree goes back to, not HOW MUCH African ancestry you have.

The MatriClan Test traces the ancestry of ONE branch of your family tree, mother to mother to mother on back, for the past 2,000 years.

The PatriClan Test traces the ancestry of ONE branch of your family tree, father to father to father on back, for the past 2,000 years.

In order for a woman to determine her paternal ancestry, she must use the Y-chromosome of a male on her father's side—her brother, father, father's brother, grandfather, etc. Click here for help with reviewing your lineages.

The easiest way to trace the ancestry of a deceased family member is to identify a living relative with the same lineage. Click here for help with reviewing your lineages. If there is no one available, our lab may be able to extract forensic DNA for an additional fee. Give us a call to discuss your options.

Your DNA is handled confidentially through all steps of the process. We do not share or sell your sequence or markers with any third party. Please click here to review our Terms and Conditions.

Please click here to review our Terms and Conditions.

Please click here to review the Test Kit Instructions.


The MatriClan and PatriClan result packages are sent via email and include:

  • Official results with HVS1, HVS2 and HVS3 designations and haplogroup from mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) that women and men inherit from their mothers
  • Certificate of Ancestry with specific ancestral country and tribe
  • E-book Guide to African History and Cultures
  • Access to our exclusive African Ancestry Online Community on Facebook
  • Online trainings with company founders and staff

The estimated timeframe for results is 8-10 weeks after receipt of your swabs. This is not a guarantee.

We will tell you if you share ancestry with one of the 400 ethnic groups in our database. There is the rare chance where we can find an African country but are unable to determine the ethnic group. There is also the chance that your result will not be African.

We do not estimate dates for the lineages since there is a large standard error involved in those estimates. The timeframe of our analysis is 500 – 2,000 years.

Our tests will only tell you about the lineage for which you submit DNA, maternal or paternal. We do not analyze your entire genome and provide a percentage breakdown of different ancestries. We provide mtDNA haplogroups. We do not provide Y Chromosome haplogroups.

If we do not find a match for your ancestry anywhere in the world, we will notify you by mail. We will keep your sequence on file and re-run it against future updates to our database. Or you can choose to receive a refund. WE DO NOT OFFER REFUNDS FOR NON-AFRICAN RESULTS.

No. The PatriClan Test is not a paternity test.


Our goal is to process and fill orders received by 2 PM EST in the same business day. We commit to shipping your order within three business days of receipt.

We cannot control the shipping carrier. Shipping times are estimates and depend on the shipping method that you select at checkout. If you want tracking, we recommend that you select one of the Priority Mail or Fedex options.

We will replace a lost kit within 90 days. You will only be charged for the shipping. If you return swabs for a test kit purchased more than 90 days ago, you are subject to a reactivation fee. See Section 11 of the Terms and Conditions.

Affirm is a financing alternative to credit cards and other credit-payment products. Affirm offers instant financing for online purchases to be paid in fixed monthly installments over 3, 6, or 12 months.

You must discuss any Affirm payment concerns directly with them at (855) 423-3729.


African Ancestry Family Reunions are specially curated all-inclusive birthright journeys. They are authentic, culturally immersive experiences co-created by experienced professionals in the country. We have partnered with Tourism ministries, local communities, businesses and cultural organizations and embassies, to create an unforgettable reconnection to your family’s ethnic group.

The trips are only open to AA family members (people who have taken a MatriClan or PatriClan Test and their extended family.

Yes, the AAFR price is all inclusive. It includes airfare from Washington DC, lodging (4-5 star), all meals, ground transportation in country and scheduled activities.

You will only see the trip details once you enter a valid Kit ID and the email used when you took your test.

Your unique African Ancestry Kit ID can be found on your results letter and on your Kit Information Booklet. Any request for a lost Kit ID must be emailed to

You will see the trip details once you enter a valid Kit ID and the email used when you took your test.

Currently, we offer Affirm as a payment option.