Gestational Carriers vs. Surrogate: What’s the Difference?

Gestational Carriers vs. Surrogate: What’s the Difference?

As you have likely noticed, we have come a long, long way in terms of alternate ways to build your family. Adoption has its special place, of course. Surrogacy, however, has become an extremely popular way for families to grow in recent years. As you have done your reading and research into the gestational surrogacy journey, you may have come across the terms “gestational carriers” and “surrogates.” Sometimes, they’ll even have been used in the same article interchangeably. This can cause some confusion, and understandably so! 

Not to worry. We are here to help you understand the difference between gestational carriers vs surrogate.

Gestational Carriers

The largest difference between the terms “surrogate” and “gestational carriers” is the relationship that the woman carrying the baby has to him or her.. Let’s start by exploring who gestational carriers are.

In the strictest definition, a gestational carrier is a woman who has a fertilized embryo  implanted into her womb. She has no biological connection to the child she is carrying, as the egg and sperm are provided by the intended parent(s).

The women who choose to become gestational carriers do not do it for money. Rather, they choose to carry the intended parent(s)’ child for a variety of reasons. For some, it’s because they truly enjoy the feeling of  being pregnant. If you’re familiar with the standard qualifications, you’ll know that, typically, every woman hoping to be a gestational carrier must have carried at least one pregnancy to term successfully.

But, more than that, gestational carriers are women who have a heart and passion for making others’ dreams come true. This is especially true for those intended parents who couldn’t otherwise have a baby. Using the IVF process ensures that the egg and sperm donor are the sole biological contributors.


Visiting the surrogate camp now: unlike with gestational carriers, these ladies are biologically related to the little one that they carry. Traditionally, surrogacy was done by the carrier being artificially inseminated with the sample of a sperm donor. From there, she would carry the pregnancy to term and give the baby to the willing family. You’ll find this in movies such as Baby Mama if you need a hilarious and excellent example of traditional surrogacy. 

If this manner of surrogacy sounds like your ideal situation, we’re afraid we have some bad news. Due to legal complications that abound during this form of family planning,, traditional surrogacy is no longer legal in the United States. Surprising, we know! It’s true, though. Across the country, traditional surrogacy is no longer recognized as a legal way to pursue surrogacy. You’ll have to go the gestational surrogacy route. 

Gestational Carriers vs. Surrogate

When it comes to surrogacy, especially as it concerns making the decision to help families grow, you’ll certainly want to do your homework. After all, this isn’t a choice to be taken lightly. While it may not seem like it will affect your life in the long run, make no mistake: once you’ve become a gestational carrier for a hopeful family, your life will change in the best way possible. Helping dreams come true on behalf of those who are unable to do so themselves is not only incredibly selfless, but it’s also plain old heroic.

This isn’t said to overwhelm you. Actually, we hope that these words will serve as encouragement in the fledgling stages of your journey into becoming a gestational carrier. 

Was there anything mentioned here that you were surprised to read? Anything that you think should have been added? Let us know in the comments!

If you’re ready to begin your own gestational surrogacy journey, either as a gestational carrier or as a hopeful intended parent, don’t hesitate. Get in contact with Adoption and Surrogacy Choices of Reno. We’re here to address any questions, comments, or concerns that you may have, and we specialize in gestational surrogacy! 

We’re available via: 

  • In person

  • FaceTime

  • Phone call

  • Email

  • Skype

  • ZOOM

Be safe and, as always, be well, friends!

Adoption and Surrogacy Choices of Reno has been providing adoption and surrogacy services across Nevada since 2012. You can call us to speak to someone now!

Contact Us 24/7: 855-940-4673 (Toll-Free) or 775-825-4673 (Reno)