top 6 gmat prep courses

Best GMAT Prep Courses of 2019

Updated September 22, 2019

Choosing the right Graduate Management Admission Test prep course is a very important decision that will help you score higher and get into the business school of your dreams.

You’ll be studying A LOT, so it’s crucial to find the best GMAT study materials that fit both your learning style and your timeframe.

Here’s the GOOD NEWS – we have personally researched and reviewed every major GMAT prep course on the market to make things easier for you! The comparison chart below compares all the top GMAT courses to help you figure out which is best for you.

Please note that several of the links included below are affiliate links. At no extra cost to you, I may earn a referral commission if you purchase one of the courses below. Please understand that affiliate commissions do not affect the content I produce or the recommendations I make. Only use the links if you have been helped by my review!


GMAT Prep Course Reviews & Exclusive Discounts

GMAT Prep Courses Magoosh GMAT Prep Course The Princeton Review GMAT Prep Course logo examPAL gmat prep course review Kaplan gmat prep course review The Economist GMAT Prep Course target test prep gmat manhattan prep gmat prep course
RANKINGS #1 #2 #3 #4 #5 #6 #7
COMPANY Magoosh GMAT Princeton Review examPAL GMAT
Kaplan GMAT The Economist
Target Test Prep  Manhattan Prep
STARTING

PRICE

$219
Get Discount
$499 $449
Get Discount
$548 $440
Get Discount
$799 $999 $799
Get Discount
$299  $549
PRACTICE QUESTIONS 1200+ 4,000+ 1,500 5,000+ 5,000+ 3,000  “Thousands”
PRACTICE EXAMS 3 10 4 9 4  N/A  6
GUARANTEE +50 total score guarantee Princeton Review Score Improvement Guarantee +70 point guarantee Kaplan’s Higher Score Guarantee 50-70+ Point Increase or Money-Back Guarantee Score Increase or Money-Back Guarantee None
FORMAT Self-Paced Online Self-Paced, Ultimate LiveOnline, Ultimate In Person Self-Paced Online Self-Paced, Live Online, and In Person Complete, Premium, and Ultimate Prep Self-Paced Online In-Person, Live Online and Self-Paced Online
COURSE BOOKS Online Only Online Only Online Only 2 GMAT Prep Books and an MBA admissions guide Online Only Online Only Printed Materials & Online Workbook
VIDEO INSTRUCTION
PROGRESS TRACKING
COURSE DEMO
STUDY PLAN
MOBILE APP
ESSAY GRADING
STUDENT SUPPORT Chat Support, Email Support & Forum Essay Feedback, Email & Phone Support Email & Live Chat Support Email & Phone Support Some Live Video Tutoring & Chat Support Email & Live Chat Support Email Support & Forum
ONLINE ACCESS 1 Year 4 Months 6 Months 4 Months 6 Months 4 Months 6 Months
TUTORING PACKAGES $680 for 6 Hours Tutoring + Premium Course  $135/hour 3 1-on-1 tutoring sessions (Genius plan only) Start at $2,799 “Ask-a-tutor” Questions Built Into Course Plans $250/hour $255/hour
MORE DETAILS Read Full Review Read Full Review Read Full Review Read Full Review Read Full Review Read Full Review Read Full Review
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GMAT Prep Courses and Study Materials


GMAT Prep Course Rankings

1. Magoosh GMAT

magoosh gmat prep course

OVERALL RATING:

Intuitive Interface: Magoosh has a very user-friendly online platform. From the dashboard students can quickly view progress charts, recommended lessons based on completed practice questions, and gain quick access to key course features. The course structure is easy to follow too; you can watch video lessons, take customizable practice quizzes, and review GMAT course material all from the well-organized dashboard.
Price: The Magoosh GMAT program is unmatched when it comes to providing quality study material at a discounted price. For just $219, students have 1 year of access to more than 250 lessons with video tutorials, 800 practice questions, and up to 2 practice exams. With competitors charging hundreds or even thousands of dollars more, this course is definitely a bargain!
Quality Instruction: Their test prep experts have extensive backgrounds in tutoring and GMAT subject matter. Each practice problem is accompanied by both written and video explanations to ensure the concepts are fully and clearly explained.
Customer Support: Magoosh has a reputation for being prompt and thorough in all responses to students’ questions. A built-in help tab appears whenever students are logged in, making it easy to submit questions immediately as soon as they come up, rather than having to stop what you are doing and going to a different part of the site to send an email or a message.

Bottom Line: Magoosh provides great flexibility and is the best overall value of any GMAT course.

TAKE ME TO MAGOOSH GMAT

2. The Princeton Review GMATThe Princeton Review GMAT Overview

OVERALL RATING:

Practice Tests: With 8 full-length adaptive practice tests, The Princeton Review provides more simulated practice than any of the other self-paced GMAT prep courses. After each test, students receive feedback and a one-on-one review of the test with their instructor to identify those sections on the GMAT that could benefit from more focused study.
Course Guarantees: The Princeton Review offers a set of three different guarantees: the Readiness Guarantee, the Satisfaction Guarantee, and the Money Back-Guarantee. Don’t feel ready to take the test at the end of a course? Repeat the same course or take a refresher course. Not satisfied with your result? Continue to work with The Princeton Review for up to a year. If your score still didn’t improve, you can ask for a refund.
Essay Feedback: The Princeton Review is the only self-paced GMAT course we reviewed that offers feedback on your practice essays. You can submit your essays through the LiveGrader tool, and one of their experts will score your essay and provide you with constructive suggestions for improving your essays.
Experience: Princeton Review has been around since 1981 and knows what they’re doing. Everything about their course from start to finish is professional and focused on helping you achieve your goals. Their experience has taught them what correlates most to success (practice test scores being one) and they’ve doubled down in these areas to help you score higher!

Bottom Line: Princeton Review is unmatched in terms of their course guarantees, number of practice tests, providing feedback on your practice essays, and providing expertise that only comes from being as experienced as they are. There’s a lot to like about their course offerings and I recommend them as the top comprehensive course on the market.

TAKE ME TO PRINCETON REVIEW GMAT

3. examPAL GMAT

examPAL gmat prep course overview

OVERALL RATING:

PALgorithm. examPAL has identified 3 main methods for answering any GMAT question: Precise (able to answer outright without considering answer choices); Alternate (using process of elimination by plugging in the answer choices); and Logical (able to use outside information to assess a statement). Each student will be more inclined towards a different approach, and the examPAL system works to identify your preferences and tailor lessons accordingly.
Interactive Video Lessons. The examPAL courses utilize interactive video lessons in conjunction with their unique PALgorithm to make sure that students are learning from mistakes and being taught the methods that work best for them. Each lesson features a number of practice questions, with explanations for correct (and incorrect) choices built in.
Admissions Consultancy. The 6-month and 1-year plans include access to a 1-on-1 consultancy session with a professional graduate school admissions counselor. The road to your dream school doesn’t end when you finish your exam, and it is great that examPAL has built-in guidance for taking the next steps on your journey.
Extra Services. Each plan comes with credits that are used for practice questions and tests but can be redirected to pay for bonus services. These options include extra essay reviews, private tutoring sessions, and expert assessment of your progress or overall study plan. This is a great option for students who don’t want to purchase the more expensive plan but still would benefit from personal coaching.
Self-Paced Only. The examPAL teaching system is based entirely off of their self-paced video lessons. While the top-tier Genius plan does offer students access to 3 private tutoring sessions, students on other plans will need to spend their credits if they want personal coaching for the GMAT itself.

Bottom Line: examPAL offers a great price for top-notch services, a score improvement guarantee, and options to access even more personal resources. If you prefer Self-Paced learning and won’t miss having access to live teaching, then consider examPAL for your GMAT prep.

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4. Kaplan GMAT

kaplan gmat prep course overview

OVERALL RATING:

Practice Material: Kaplan offers a lot of practice material, which can help you better recognize GMAT question types and improve your test taking ability. Their quiz bank of more than 5,000 GMAT practice questions allows you to take customized quizzes and filter which GMAT areas you want to focus and improve on. 7 full-length practice exams give you ample opportunity to practice your strategies and prepare yourself for the exam.
Higher Score Guarantee: Kaplan is confident in their products and will give students an opportunity to retake the course or get a refund if their score does not improve. Make sure you are aware of the conditions of the guarantee, one of which is establishing a baseline GMAT score before beginning the course.
Official Test Day Experience: Unique to Kaplan is the ability to take a practice GMAT test in an actual Prometric testing facility. This may give you the edge you need by giving you the familiarity with the test taking environment.
Most Expensive: Kaplan is extremely proud of their product and I don’t mean that in a good way. Their courses start at $799, offering no low-end price points for any of their courses. Their top courses are $1199 and tutoring packages on top of that are thousands of dollars.

Bottom Line: Kaplan provides a comprehensive course offering but is the most expensive option on the market. If money isn’t an issue, they’re a solid option after Princeton Review.

TAKE ME TO KAPLAN GMAT

5. The Economist GMAT

The Economist GMAT Prep Course review

OVERALL RATING:

Communicate with Real Tutors: Some test prep courses charge huge additional fees for that service, but the Economist GMAT program has 1-on-1 tutoring sessions built into each of its plans. Messaging with tutors is done through their in-app messaging system, and this ability to reach out and contact a real live human is definitely a selling point for this GRE prep program. On top of messaging with tutors, you’ll get up to 6 live one-on-one video tutoring sessions.
Practice Material:The Economist basic GMAT prep course offers 4 full-length tests, but you can take up to 6 practice tests, depending upon the plan that you choose. The course also offers 5,000 practice questions and uses adaptive learning technology to help you focus on areas where you may struggle. This personalized learning system is one of the best out there, and the more you use it – the more personalized it becomes.
Mobile Friendly: You’ll be able to study on the go with The Economists mobile/tablet friendly interface. It’s a great option for someone that’s always on the move and only has 20 minutes for a quick study session. Just know not all features are available on mobile – like taking practice exams.

Bottom Line: The Economist GMAT courses are highly-regarded GMAT prep options, with an outstanding score guarantee, multiple course formats and a strikingly clean dashboard. If you want built-in tutoring services and a straightforward online interface, this is the course for you. They’re the best bang for-for-buck course when you factor in tutoring services.

TAKE ME TO THE ECONOMIST

6. Target Test Prep GMAT

target test prep gmat review

OVERALL RATING:

Personalized Study Plans: The Target Test Prep course adapts to your skill level and score goal, using detailed analytics and customizable tests to zero in on your weak areas. A step-by-step, personalized study plan guides you through 20 chapters organized into 500 easy-to-digest lessons, and 3,000+ realistic quant problems help prepare you for the rigors of the GMAT.
Video Solutions by Expert Instructors: You will watch and learn from the masters when you sign up for this course. With more than 800 comprehensive HD video solutions to quant problems, led by expert GMAT instructors, you can easily pinpoint why (and where) you got a question wrong, and get valuable strategies for solving problems more efficiently.
$1 Full-Access Trial and Score Guarantee: You can’t go wrong with a risk-free, full-access trial for only $1, and Target Test Prep offers both a 5-day trial with no auto-billing and a guaranteed score increase if you stick with the course. If your GMAT quant score doesn’t go up after you complete Target Test Prep’s course, you can request a full refund.
Only Covers Quantitative Section of GMAT: Target Test Prep is a great option for those looking to boost their quantitative scores, but as of now, there is no equivalent review course available for the other sections of the GMAT, although private tutors are available to help you with those sections at your request.

Bottom Line: If you struggle specifically with the Quantitative section of the GMAT, Target Test Prep is a great option for you. I recommend their 4- or 6-month plans as the best bang-for-buck options.

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7. Manhattan Prep GMAT

manhattan prep gmat course review

OVERALL RATING:

Comprehensive Course: Manhattan Prep’s course gives students a number of in-depth materials to study for each area of the exam. Access to more than 27 hours of video lessons, strategy guide books for each area of the exam, the Official Guide to the GMAT book, and 6 practice exams make this a well-rounded course with an impressive amount of practice material.
Downloadable Video Lessons: Manhattan Prep gives students the ability to study virtually anywhere. Their on-demand video lectures can be streamed live or downloaded to your computer or iPad so that you can study on the go, even if you are in an area without internet access. The high definition videos are easy to follow and taught by expert instructors.
Quality Practice Tests: In addition to in-depth lessons and study material, Manhattan provides 6 quality practice tests. Their test are difficult, and some students report that the practice tests are more challenging than the actual test. Each practice test includes a detailed score report.
Qualified Instructors:Manhattan Prep is meticulous in selecting their instructors and they are knowledgable in all areas of the GMAT.
Guarantees:Manhattan Prep clearly states on their website that all payments are nonrefundable and the company does not provide refunds to students for any reason.

Bottom Line: Manhattan Prep provides a comprehensive GMAT course that covers all the bases for you to score high. I don’t find it as efficient of a process as Princeton Review or Kaplan, but if you want a large amount of practice problems, Manhattan Prep is a great option.

TAKE ME TO MANHATTAN PREP GMAT

magoosh-gre-ad

What’s the Best GMAT Prep Course?

There are several viable options for the GMAT including: Magoosh, Princeton Review and Kaplan. But determining which one is best depends on a number of factors like your budget, your learning style, and your time frame. These GMAT course rankings are meant to help you find the right course FOR YOU!

Magoosh GMAT (Full Review)
The Princeton Review GMAT (Full Review)
examPAL GMAT (Full Review)
Kaplan GMAT (Full Review)
The Economist GMAT (Full Review)
Target Test Prep GMAT (Full Review)
Manhattan Prep GMAT (Full Review)

Best GMAT Apps

#1 Magoosh GMAT App

Magoosh takes the cake when it comes to GMAT apps, combining its natural affinity for mobile platforms with all of the resources of Magoosh’s prep course. With either a premium membership or your existing Magoosh login, you can gain access to over 700 practice questions, 200 video lessons, tutor assistance, progress tracking, and much more. This makes the Magoosh app a perfect companion to your existing Magoosh prep course and makes Magoosh the best app for GMAT preparation.

TAKE ME TO MAGOOSH GMAT

#2 Manhattan GMAT Prep App

Although Manhattan Prep sank down on my list of the top courses overall, the Manhattan Prep GMAT app is one of the program’s saving graces. With this app, students get access to over 15 quizzes, 1500+ GMAT vocabulary flashcards, immediate feedback and progress tracking, and coverage of all four sections of the GMAT. Although they might rank higher overall, the truth is that the Princeton Review GMAT app and Kaplan GMAT app don’t quite measure up to Manhattan Prep. Condensing all of the Manhattan Prep’s resources into a slick and useful mobile setting is useful for those who need a streamlined on-the-go study option.

TAKE ME TO MANHATTAN PREP GMAT

#3 Kaplan GMAT Prep App

What makes the Kaplan GMAT Prep app stand out is its ability to squeeze the full array of course features into mobile form. Including access to the Kaplan Qbank app, all Kaplan mobile apps come complete with access to the video lessons, practice questions, and other resources that you will find in your main self-paced or live prep course. If you thrive on traditional teaching materials, but your schedule forces you to be on the move, the Kaplan GMAT Prep app might be a good choice for you.

TAKE ME TO KAPLAN GMAT

Best GMAT Flashcards

#1 Magoosh GMAT Flashcards

Magoosh offers students 400 free GMAT flashcards that cover both the verbal and math sections. The verbal section drills you on the tricky idioms that you will find on the GMAT, and the math cards teach concepts like algebra, statistics, and geometry. The fact that these cards are not only free but plentiful makes them the best GMAT flashcards of the choices on my list. Magoosh flashcards are only offered on online, but can be accessed on a downloadable mobile app.

TAKE ME TO MAGOOSH GMAT

#2 Kaplan GMAT Flashcards

Kaplan brings up second place with a package including 260 math, 190 verbal reasoning, and 50 extra cards to help with analytical writing, integrated reasoning, and general test-taking strategies. 500 cards is the most you’ll find of the courses on my list, but it’s hard to compete with Magoosh’s missing price tag. Kaplan’s cards are available for $17 and are a great supplement to one of their study packages. You can use the cards online and in-hand.

TAKE ME TO KAPLAN GMAT

#3 Princeton Review GMAT Flashcards

Princeton Review GMAT flashcard come in as a close third place, offering students 500 more study cards that cover verbal, math, and general GMAT test-taking tips. They can also be picked up for about $17, just like Kaplan’s, but there is no online accompaniment. Lots of students feel like studying flashcards in-hand is a great way to maximize retention, but it is always better to have a digital option whenever possible.

TAKE ME TO PRINCETON REVIEW GMAT

Top 12 Best GMAT Prep Courses of 2019

GMAT Courses Best For… Course Price
Magoosh GMAT Flexibility, Ease of Use $219
The Princeton Review GMAT Practice Tests $499
 The Economist GMAT One-on-One Video Tutoring, Live Chat  $799
Kaplan GMAT Comprehensive Course Features $799
examPAL GMAT Essay Reviews $439
Target Test Prep GMAT Quantitative Section $299
Manhattan Prep GMAT Qualified Instuctors $549
TestMasters One-On-One Tutoring $950
PowerScore Admissions Prep Services $995
Barron’s GMAT Low Cost/Budget Option $99
MLIC Test Score Guarantee $1495

 

Summary
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Best GMAT Prep Courses of 2019
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10 replies
  1. Erin says:

    Hello, I am looking for a course that is excellent at helping to prepare for the quantitative section. Which course would you recommend?

    Reply
    • Brett says:

      Hi Erin,

      If you’re only looking to master the quantitative section I’d go with Target Test Prep. They do a great job since that is the only section they help with.

      Best of luck!

      -Brett

      Reply
  2. Sam says:

    Hi,

    I took the GMAT about 7yrs ago and I got 550 score. This time, I need at least 650 score. Which course provider will you recommend? I am working full time and only have few hours after work + weekends for the next 3-4 months to take the GMAT test.

    Thanks and hope to hear from you soon.

    Sam

    Reply
    • Brett says:

      Hi Sam,

      I’d go with Magoosh in your situation. They have more than enough practice questions and quizzes and the structure of the program would really benefit you. If you feel like you’re going to be consistent in putting serious time in and you have a larger budget – I’d go with Princeton Review’s Ultimate Live Online course. Both courses are solid options. Make sure you use one of my course discounts above and save yourself some cash.

      Best of luck!

      -Brett

      Reply
  3. Mira says:

    Hi,

    I would like to write my GMAT in 4 months , I work full time and would like to complete it in 4 months at most. I am just an average student and need 600. Which course and hours of study per day would you recommend.

    Thanks,
    Mira.

    Reply
    • Brett says:

      Hi Mira,

      Thank you for your question. It’s important to remember that the “best” course for you depends entirely on your budget, timeframe, and your learning style. Magoosh GMAT fits most students needs and does so at a really budget-friendly price, so I’d check them out first. If you prefer a different format that’s more structured than Magoosh’s self-paced course offerings, The Princeton Review would be my next recommendation.

      Best of luck!

      -Brett

      Reply
  4. Julius says:

    I would like to do GMAT for not more than 5 months. My target score is 770 and I work full time but I could manage to get some few hours at night daily and Sunday full day. I don’t have a solid foundation in Math but would need both Verbal and Quant. I have never done GMAT and my dream is to get my score the first time. Which course would you recommend and on average how many hours do I have to put in regardless of the costs?

    Reply
    • Brett says:

      Hi Julius,

      If you’re willing to put the time in and really utilize all of the tools they offer, I feel like either Magoosh or The Princeton Review would be a great fit for you. The Princeton Review’s GMAT courses offers a number of tools that can help you on both the verbal and quant sections that you need help with. Magoosh’s course offering is what I recommend for most students, so I’d look into them as well as a good second option.

      Best of luck!

      Reply
  5. Zac says:

    Hi,
    It’s currently March 2019 and I have a few months to study for my GMATs to apply for a 2020 start.
    I have done a few practice questions and in general I get the answer right I just need lots of practice in speeding it up. Is Magoosh good enough for that? I probably need less help in the quantitative stuff, but overall I need to just speed up the questions.
    Thanks,

    Zac

    Reply

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