If you are in the process of choosing an egg donor to help you conceive, then you don’t need us to tell you that it is one of the most important decisions you will probably ever make. Finding an egg donor requires time, patience and ample research.
Patients who are looking for egg donation IVF are often able to find the perfect donor via their fertility clinic. But sometimes a lack of available donors at the clinic, or the inability to find the right donor from those available, means that the patient has to look to egg banks in order to find ‘the one’.
A global network of commercial egg banks will permit a larger pool of ethnically diverse donors for selection. Frozen oocytes can be easily transported from an egg bank anywhere in the world to the patient’s chosen fertility clinic for fertilisation and implantation. Egg banks work with selected clinics, and oocytes will only ever be sent if there is an agreement between the two parties. It is worth bearing in mind that if your clinic does not have a contract with an egg donor bank, then you may find yourself paying out expensive shipping costs. Oocytes will never be dispatched to the patient’s home address.
There are egg banks all over the world, but popular destinations for couples seeking donor eggs include Spain, US, Georgia, North Cyprus, Greece and Ukraine. Whichever egg bank you opt for, it is crucial that you are informed about the laws surrounding egg banks and egg donation in your chosen country.
Another thing worth remembering is that different countries have different laws when it comes to egg donor anonymity. For example, in Spain, no information about the donor is shared with the recipient, apart from basic physical characteristics, such as height, eye and hair colour, required to “phenomatch” the donor to the recipient. In the US, things are more relaxed and, depending on the bank, you may have an access to the egg donor database and be able to view pictures of the donor, photos of the donor as a child, information about her hobbies and interests, a writing sample, voice sample, or even her name.
How to choose the best egg donor bank?
Most egg banks are tightly regulated and provide good quality service, including screening.
In terms of choosing the best egg bank, it really comes down to a number of factors which are unique to each patient:
- donor availability,
- patient’s budget
- and the possibility of shipping the oocytes to your chosen country and clinic.
Donor banks are regulated by the law specific to each country, so the age of the donors may vary, doctor qualifications may differ from country to country, and tests performed on the donor, such as genetic testing for certain conditions, may not be carried out in the same way. Before choosing an egg bank, you should ask about the age of the available donors and what tests the women need to take to qualify as an egg donor.
That said, there is no one ‘best’ egg bank. A bank which may be perfect for you, may not even make it into another person’s top ten. Expectations and budgets vary from person to person. That said, it is worth seeking out and speaking to women and couples in a similar position or those who have used egg banks in the past to find out more about their experiences – good or bad.
How to choose the best Egg Donor Bank? What information should patients look for?
Before choosing the right egg bank on your path to parenthood, you should research the following things:
Legislation in your treatment country. Before you start your egg donor search, you need to check the legislation in your treatment country. Is fertility treatment with donor eggs accessible to you in your own country, or do you need to consider alternatives such as travelling abroad? Besides that, some countries only permit treatment with certain types of donors (Non-ID or ID release donors).
Find the right clinic. When you know the legislation in your treatment country, it is time to find the clinic that matches your preferences. Whether you need to call or even visit more clinics to find the just right clinic for you, is totally up to you. It is important that you find a clinic where you feel safe and heard.
Screening process. It is important for the egg bank to do whatever possible to ensure the best possible donor eggs to maximize the chances of a pregnancy and in the end, of a healthy child. The screening process of donor candidates is, therefore, crucial.
If you choose donor eggs from Cryos, you can always be sure that your donor has undergone a thorough physical examination, genetic screening including family medical history, and psychological evaluation assessing risk behaviors and ensuring the emotional stability of the donor prior to becoming an egg donor. In fact, only 4% of our egg donor candidates get accepted in our donation programme.
Donor selection. There are many things to consider when you start your actual donor search. And which criteria are most important in your search on your way to parenthood, is individual and all up to you. You may start out with a long list of criteria but might end up with a few non-negotiable. There are no rights and wrongs as long as you feel safe and well-informed.
Available donor profiles. The decision between a Non-ID Release (anonymous) and an ID Release (non-anonymous) donor is a question of whether you want to give your child the opportunity to contact the egg donor after reaching the age of 18. Your treatment country may have regulatory restrictions on this matter, which means that you can only use either Non-ID Release or ID Release donors. To make sure you stay compliant with the rules, we recommend that you check the regulations in your treatment country before deciding on your donor. At Cryos Egg Bank, you can moreover choose between a basic and an extended donor profile. The difference is the level of information accessible about the donor.
Success rate. The process of freezing and thawing eggs has radically improved over the past several years, assisting more men and women to become parents with help from an egg donor. Today, we see high pregnancy success rates using frozen donor eggs from Cryos with top performing fertility clinics.
Cryos has excellent success rates for frozen donor eggs. We have a 92% survival rate of our frozen eggs which give a clinical pregnancy rate of over 75% per transfer beating the industry standard. The success rate, however, depends on a lot of different factors, such as the expertise of the fertility clinic, sperm quality and woman receiving the eggs. Cryos has reference IVF clinics in many countries across Europe and US, our reference clinics have been trained in obtaining the best results from our frozen donor eggs
The insight provided by Saghar Kasiri, Director of European Operations, Cryos International
Best oocytes banks worldwide – popularity
Unfortunately, there are no rankings or any other competitions or awards that can help to guide you as to which egg bank is best. Seeking out opinions from others on internet forums or via Facebook may prove helpful, but these opinions are unlikely to be objective. There are limited reviews available as in many cases the clinics work with the selected banks directly.
So this is why we have put together a list of the best oocyte banks worldwide to help you in your search for your perfect egg donor. All details are correct at the time of writing (November 2022).
Best egg banks worldwide – directory
Aphrodite Egg Bank
All donors registered at the Aphrodite Egg Bank are tested for up to 302 recessive genes, including Cystic Fibrosis (CF), Fragile X and Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA) which are the most common.
A simple search tool allows you to access the full list of available donors, or you can search potential donors according to race, hair colour, eye colour, blood type, complexion and height. This also allows you to specify whether you want to use fresh or frozen embryos and would like an open or anonymous donor. If you register with Aphrodite, you can access photos of some of the donors.
Although many of the donors on the list come from Greek, Cypriot and Eastern European backgrounds, there are currently donors available of Iranian, Cameroonian and Nepalese heritage.
Aphrodite even runs a special programme for those seeking a Jewish egg donor, with a Hebrew-speaking patient coordinator if required. This unique program officially certifies that the donor is of Jewish background at least three generations back.
Aphrodite Egg Bank holds an exclusive partnership with CAN-AM Cryoservices, Canada’s largest donor sperm and eggs distributor, meaning eggs can be shipped to the country.
ProCrear Egg Bank
At the Spanish ProCrear Egg Bank, women aged between 18 and 29 donate eggs voluntarily, anonymously and altruistically.
The donor selection process is very rigorous, so as a result, only around one out of every three candidates is accepted. Comprehensive genetic testing sees each and every donor tested for 515 possible mutations related to more than 300 genetic diseases.
There is no search tool available on the bank’s website to allow you to browse potential donors. Instead, you are asked to fill out an online form, which includes a section asking you and your partner to describe your physical characteristics. ProCrear will then get back to you with a list of potential donors who match your physical characteristics.
Ovobank has a large pool of donors with three egg banks in different countries around the world. In addition, the Spanish clinic also has several recruitment centres that allows it to access donors of all races, nationalities and phenotypes. There is also the option to see photos of some of the donors, who are all aged between 18 and 33 years old. However, in order to access this database of donors, you have to register your details with OvoBank.
The women who come forward to donate are subjected to a strict vetting process, including genetic testing. Ultimately, only 34% of the candidates for donation are eventually declared suitable after these tests and examinations. 73% of those rejected candidates are turned down for medical reasons, for example, having a family history of medical conditions, such as epilepsy or thalassemia.
Combining breakthrough technology and rigorous egg donor screening, Ovoria Egg Bank offers high quality donor oocytes for intended parents and fertility clinics in more than 30 countries worldwide.
The bank has a searchable online catalogue of donors, which shows the donor’s photo and basic details, including hair colour, eye colour, race and whether they are an anonymous or non-anonymous donor. Photos are understandably absent from those donors who opt to be anonymous. However you have to register with the website if you want to access the donor’s extended profile, which includes childhood pictures and information about the donor’s medical history.
Ovoria has a rigorous donor screening process, using extended genetic testing to test for 400-plus gene disorders.
CEIFER / Gametia Biobank
Gametia is a new brand, but has been dedicated to biobanking for decades, mainly in Spain and Italy. Gametia currently has seven centres in three different countries, namely Spain, the Czech Republic and Estonia. It made 15,000 shipments to 350 clinics and hospitals worldwide in 2021 alone.
Gametia has a rigorous donor recruitment programme and carries out extensive genetic testing. Facial matching is also offered as an additional service.
Unfortunately there is no option to view photos or details of any potential egg donors on the Gametia website.
Innova Cryobank boasts a vast and diverse database of egg donors from Caucasian, Asian, African and American backgrounds. However it is difficult to check exactly how vast this database is as there is no way to search for, or to view, prospective egg donors on the Innova Cryobank website.
There is a strict donor selection process, with each woman undergoing rigorous medical examination and genetic screening and in depth psychological evaluation. Innova Cryobank prides itself on its ‘human approach to donor treatment’.
There is even a high-quality team of top European lawyers available who will be able to guide you through the legalities of international egg donation.
New Life Georgia
New Life Georgia has a diverse database of carefully selected egg donors of various ethnic and religious backgrounds from Georgia, Ukraine, Poland, South Africa, Thailand, Mexico and South East Asia. All donors are aged between 18 and 30 years old, non-smokers, with no genetic or hereditary illnesses. New Life Georgia ensures that all donors have the support of their immediate family members.
There is a database of egg donors available on the New Life Georgia website, but it is password protected.
Egg donors are willing to travel if required, particularly to New Life’s clinics in India, Thailand, Ukraine, Poland, Mexico, Cyprus and to partner clinics in different parts of the world.
New Life representatives frequently travel abroad to other European cities, including London and Amsterdam, to meet parents wanting to discuss egg donation options.
Cryos Egg Bank
Cryos Egg Bank allows you to search for potential egg donors, offering the option of viewing limited or extended donor profiles online. Limited profile includes the usual information you would expect, including race, ethnicity, hair and eye colour, blood type, height and weight, accompanied by personal impressions of the woman in question by the Cryos team, including comments on their voice, mannerisms and even their timekeeping.
he extended profile includes photos of the donor as an adult, plus information about her family, her education, family tree, handwriting and even an informative Q&A session, where you can find out even more about the donor’s hobbies, likes and dislikes. You will need an account to view this information, but there is no charge to set one up. At the time of writing, the majority of the egg donors available on the Cryos Egg Bank are caucasian.
Fairfax Egg Bank
Country: United States
The Fairfax EggBank Donor Database showcases one of the largest repositories for premium frozen donor eggs in the United States. It is possible to search the online database for donors who have your required characteristics.
Donor profiles are accompanied by a childhood photo, plus all the usual information you would expect, including physical characteristics. There is also information about the donor’s educational attainment, occupation, religion and the age of their first egg retrieval. A medical profile, personal profile and donor essay are available, but these can only be accessed if you register with the site. Photos of the donor as an adult are also available with these extended profiles.
Donor Egg Bank USA
Country: United States
Donor Egg Bank USA boasts a catalogue of 400+ highly screened, carefully selected egg donors.
This catalogue can be searched using the key characteristics of hair colour, eye colour, race, blood type, height, anonymity level and whether the donor has previously donated eggs. You can also search using keywords. This will call up a selection of limited profiles which will include all of the above information, as well as information about the donor’s age, ethnicity, weight and education. You will need to register with the site to see full profiles and photos.
There are plenty of Caucasian donors available, as well as a number of Hispanic donors. However, at the time of writing (November 2022), there were a very limited number of African American donors registered on the site.
The World Egg & Sperm Bank
Country: United States
The World Egg & Sperm Bank, based in Arizona, manages all donors with one experienced medical and laboratory team, in one state-of-the-art medical facility, built solely for egg and sperm donation. The bank prides itself on not out-sourceing to large networks of IVF clinics to perform any of these essential operations.
One click on the homepage takes you to a gallery of egg donors, illustrated with recent photos of the women donating. Hover over the photo to reveal basic information including race, hair and eye colour, height, blood type, Rh factor and education level. You will need to register and log in to your account to view the full donor profile.
Some donors are willing to go through a fresh cycle of IVF, but most have already been screened, stimulated and have had their eggs retrieved and frozen. These can be shipped directly to the clinic for warming, fertilisation and transfer.
Egg Donor America
Country: United States
Egg Donor America has two separate databases, one for fresh and one for frozen donor eggs.
Each donor profile is accompanied by a photograph of the woman donating, and information about her eye and hair colour, height, educational attainment, race, religion and whether the woman has previous experience of egg donation. The profile also includes the donor’s age, ranging from 21 to 31. There is also a lot of information about the donor’s ethnic background, with the register currently showing a diverse range of donors of Pakistani, Ghanaian, Moroccan, Israeli, Cuban, Filipino and Chinese heritage, amongst others.
My Egg Bank
Country: United States
Another US-based egg bank, My Egg Bank offers a simple search tool to allow users to search for potential donors who are African American or African, Native American, Alaska Native, Asian, Caucasian, Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander, Hispanic, Middle Eastern/Arabic or who are of mixed ancestry. There is also the option to search for donors according to heritage , hair colour, eye colour, blood type, level of education, height range and whether you are looking for fresh or frozen eggs. However, if you want to view photos of the prospective donors, you have to register with the site, providing your personal details, to allow you to login. It is worth noting that some donors are marked as ‘unavailable for additional genetic testing’.
Egg Donation, INC.
Country: United States
Egg Donation Inc is a full-service egg donor agency specialising in matching egg donors with intended parents as well as assisting in every step of the egg donation process. You select your own clinic and the team at Egg Donation Inc will work directly with your fertility specialist, IVF clinic, or surrogate agency. Its egg donation programme includes matching, screening, and coordination of all psychological, legal, medical, financial, and travel services whether it is for a fresh cycle, frozen egg bank cycle, or shared/split cycle.
Unfortunately you must register an account with Egg Donation Inc, including your contact details, before you are allowed to view any of the registered donors on the free to access database.
Lucina Egg Bank
Country: United States
For more than 30 years the team of highly-skilled physicians at the Lucina Egg Bank in San Diego has worked to make the dream of having a family reality.
You can only see a very brief selection of donors without signing up, but their names and photos are used alongside their physical characteristics. It also includes the number of eggs, but next to this is written ‘incoming cohort’ and as all the numbers are the same, this may not be accurate.
When you click on the woman’s picture, unlike others on our list, a large price appears under their profile. Some people may find this information presented in this way useful, while others may find it a bit crass.
International Egg Bank
Country: United States
The International Egg Bank website is rather basic and does not feel as intuitive as other donor banks on our list. There is no search tool which allows you to narrow down your choices.
Each woman on the list has a photo of her as an adult, although these images are of varying quality. If you hover over each profile, you are only given the briefest snippet of information about the donor, including race, height, weight and whether any frozen oocytes are available. If you require anything more than this, then you must register with the site. It is worth noting that, compared to other banks on our list, there are far fewer potential donors to choose from.
Country: United States
Egg and embryo donation agency DonorNexus boasts a ‘diverse selection of available egg donors, donated embryos, and frozen donor eggs’.
A simple, easy to use search tool presents a gallery of donors, complete with photos, details about their physical characteristics, their age and whether they are a first time or experienced egg donor. There is also information about the donor’s status, for example if she is available to start a cycle, if she is currently undergoing egg banking, is in the middle of a cycle for another couple or if the donor is taking a break from cycling for four to six months.
There is a large number of racially diverse donors available. Most of the women hail from various US states, but the list also includes donors from Canada, Mexico and Brazil too.
Asian Egg Bank
Country: United States
Asiann Egg Bank is dedicated to recruiting egg donors of Asian ancestry. The bank’s donor database is comprised of hundreds of profiles of egg donors of East Asian heritage, including Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Vietnamese and Filipino.
You can tailor your search of the database by ethnic origin, physical attributes, medical history, educational background, and other characteristics. But the downside is you must create an account to view any of the donor profiles, including even the most basic information.
Best egg donor banks – final thoughts
It is important to do as much research as possible when trying to find the best egg donor bank. Make sure you familiarise yourself with any legal restrictions, laws surrounding donor anonymity and that you are aware of the full costs involved – particularly shipping costs if there is no contract between your fertility clinic and donor bank. And remember that the ‘best’ egg donor bank is subjective. It is important to find the donor bank that is right for you.
Patients who are looking for donors directly from clinics will probably have a wider choice available to them. You can find clinics specialising in egg donation IVF here >
Table of Contents
- 1 How to choose the best egg donor bank?
- 2 Best oocytes banks worldwide – popularity
- 3 Best egg banks worldwide – directory
- 3.1 Aphrodite Egg Bank
- 3.2 ProCrear Egg Bank
- 3.3 OvoBank
- 3.4 OVORIA
- 3.5 CEIFER / Gametia Biobank
- 3.6 Innova Cryobank
- 3.7 New Life Georgia
- 3.8 Cryos Egg Bank
- 3.9 Fairfax Egg Bank
- 3.10 Donor Egg Bank USA
- 3.11 The World Egg & Sperm Bank
- 3.12 Egg Donor America
- 3.13 My Egg Bank
- 3.14 Egg Donation, INC.
- 3.15 Lucina Egg Bank
- 3.16 International Egg Bank
- 3.17 DonorNexus
- 3.18 Asian Egg Bank
- 4 Best egg donor banks – final thoughts