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WorldVitalRecords.com has more than six billion historical records, which is an impressive number indeed. You can search for records from around the world, although they are primarily for the USA or UK. Membership offers unlimited access to these records, which means you won’t be hit with additional fees. However, we found the site wasn’t particularly easy to use and the search features need some work in order to help you filter through the results.
There are a large variety of collections to browse, including family trees, newspaper archives, military records, censuses, court records and more. The selection is impressive, and we liked that the site contained more than 160 million images. This can make for some interesting research results.
Given the site has so many records, they really need to work on improving their searches. As a paying member you can perform an advanced search, which allows you to be more accurate, but we often found ourselves not quite knowing where to head on the site in order to find what we were looking for. Some kind of tutorial videos would really help with this, as well as making the site a bit more intuitive in general.
WorldVitalRecords.com has received complaints from several users who signed up for the free trial but were unable to cancel the membership, and were subsequently charged. This is worrying because it means it’s risky to give the free trial a go, especially since you have to include your bank details to use the free trial.
If you like the look of the website and what it offers, there are two main packages to choose from. Each package offers full access to all the records stored, which is good because you shouldn’t incur hidden charges. The monthly packages are a little expensive, particularly if you plan on using it for a while. Instead, we’d recommend the year-long option, which offers a significant saving. You can also receive a copy of Family Tree Builder on CD.
If you visit our genealogy software reviews, you’ll find that Family Tree Builder is very highly rated, meaning that the 1 year contract offers a pretty good package for the money. Whilst there may be community features available for full members, these aren’t available until you’ve included all your credit card details and completed your registration. Additional features such as an online family tree builder, or the ability to upload files to share with your family, are missing. Tools to encourage members to cross reference or share data are also very limited.
If you're interested in finding out about your family history from your DNA, the site now offers DNA testing services which can be provided through the post. There are three packages available and we'd recommend talking to a member of the sales team to help decide which would suit you.
In short, the database on WorldVitalRecords is substantial, but it lacks several key features. We were also disappointed by some of its functionality, and found that our results were sometimes difficult to filter through in order to find exactly what we were looking for. We recommend exploring as much of the site as you can before registering, especially since you need to include payment details before accessing the 7 day trial.
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