9 Best GMAT Prep Courses for 2021: Top Online School Picks & Reviews

BEST TEST DAY PREP

Kaplan In-Person

Kaplan GMAT Prep

  • Score improvement guarantee
  • Official test day experience
  • Extensive and adaptive practice resources

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BEST BUDGET OPTION

Magoosh Logo

Magoosh GMAT Prep

  • Budget-friendly
  • One year subscription
  • Score improvement guarantee

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BEST INTERACTIVE VIDEOS

Manhattan Prep GMAT

  • Mobile app
  • Interactive software
  • Extensive choices for GMAT prep package

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A great GMAT score opens the door to top MBA programs. It’s no surprise, therefore, that you would invest valuable time, effort, and resources in preparing for this. After all, your GMAT prep has the potential to launch your career towards greater heights. 

One way to prepare for the test is to pick the best GMAT prep partner. However, which one is the best GMAT prep partner for you? Well, choosing the most suitable one might be a little tricky, especially with almost all of them claiming to be the best. 

Hence, we have compiled here NINE of the best GMAT prep courses for 2020. What made them our top picks for this list? Let’s find out.

1. Kaplan GMAT Prep

Best Test Day Prep

Kaplan In-Person

Kaplan GMAT Prep

Kaplan GMAT Prep is best if you: 

  • Are on the lookout for extensive practice tests and questions. 
  • Want supplemental practice resources to boost your GMAT prep.
  • Believe you would need a glimpse of the GMAT through an official test day experience

 

  • Extensive and adaptive practice resources
  • Score improvement guarantee
  • Official test day experience
  • Availability of study and practice packages which could be purchased independently from the course
  • No mobile app

If you’re looking for the best GMAT prep option that will help you have the best test day preparation, try Kaplan GMAT Prep. As one of the longest-running test prep, Kaplan GMAT had established its name as among the best. 

It provides an effective GMAT prep with its offering of nine full-length practice tests and 5000+ adaptive Qbank. Kaplan GMAT also offers a number of video lessons, available in its GMAT Channel in which you could filter your search to access videos of preferred instructors and subjects. All these resources are available for you for six months. 

Further, Kaplan provides an official test day experience that simulates the actual GMAT test day, including the time, seating style, and more. If it’s your first time taking the GMAT, this plus would be a good way to give you a glimpse of what you’re about to face. Hence, it prepares you for the important event, not only by familiarizing you with the test but also by helping you get used to the testing conditions.  

Kaplan GMAT Prep offers the following packages (1): 

  • Self-Paced: $599. 
  • Live Online: $1249 
  • GMAT Tutoring: $2499 (10 hours)

If all that you’re looking for are supplemental resources for your GMAT prep, you could access Kaplan’s Adaptive Qbank with over 2300 questions. They also have Kaplan GMAT Practice Pack which is available at $149 (3 months) and Kaplan GMAT Study Pack at  $299 (3 months).

2. Magoosh GMAT Prep

Best Budget Option

Magoosh

Magoosh GMAT Prep

Kaplan GMAT Prep is best if you: 

Are an independent learner. With the absence of live classes and very minimal guidance through the study guide and “ask an expert” feature, you need to have a strong self-motivation to make the best out of the Magoosh GMAT prep. 

 

  • Budget-friendly
  • One year subscription
  • Mobile app 
  • Unique score predictor
  • Score improvement guarantee
  • Has limited number of tests (2 practice tests) and questions
  • No live classes

If you are an independent learner who is looking for flexible GMAT prep, you might want to try Magoosh. It offers you a nice enough deal for a cost that would be friendly enough to your pocket. Would its GMAT prep be good enough though? Judging by Magoosh’s confidence with its +50 point increase guarantee, I believe it is.  

How does Magoosh plan to increase your score? They offer over 300 video lessons, 1300 practice questions, 2 practice tests, a study schedule, and an accurate test predictor, among other features. It also has an app which is available for iOS and Android, assuring easy access. 

Magoosh offers limited packages (2) but you might want to know that these are among the cheapest options you would find for a GMAT prep. It is sad to note, however, that Magoosh does not have live classes. 

  • Math +I IR study Pack: $219 
  • Self-Study Premium: $249. 
  • Guided Study (Tutoring + Premium): $799

Magoosh GMAT Prep’s Guided study, which offers a 6 hour tutorial with the self-study premium, is probably the most budget-friendly tutorial package that you will ever find. In addition to the tutorial, you have access to 340+ video lessons, 1300+ practice questions, 2 diagnostic tests, and study schedules.

3. Manhattan Prep GMAT

Best Interactive Videos

Manhattan Prep GMAT

Kaplan GMAT Prep is best if you:

  • Learn best through engaging and interactive videos. 
  • Want a personalized but flexible study arrangement. Since Interactive videos are included in almost all packages, you get a chance to design your GMAT prep at your own sked, and still have an interactive learning experience.

 

  • Mobile app
  • Interactive software
  • Top caliber instructors and tutors
  • Extensive choices for GMAT prep package
  • Most costly compared to other options
  • No score guarantee

Manhattan Prep has the best interactive videos, particularly in its self-paced course ‘Interact.’  

The prep course also offers a number of great deals with its top-caliber instructors and tutors, 6 full-length practice tests, and 5 strategy guides, among other features. It also has a mobile app that is available on iOS and Android, ensuring convenient GMAT prep. 

However, the most remarkable feature of Manhattan Prep GMAT for me is their interactive video lessons. These are not just your typical pre-recorded videos that urge you to pause the video from time to time to try to answer the question and continue to play it once you are ready. No. With Manhattan Prep, the lesson urges you to interact. And they react to your responses. It is almost like being in a one-on-one live session.   

Manhattan Prep offers a wide variety of deals for learners of different needs, targets, schedules, and budgets. These packages would also give you access to their interactive videos (3).

  • Interact Full Course: $999. 
  • Live GMAT Course: $1599
  • Private Tutoring: $2450 (10 hours)

If you want an intensive GMAT prep for a limited time of 2 to 3 weeks, you can try a Boot Camp for $2699.  Now, if you already have a 650 or higher GMAT score and still aren’t satisfied, you might want to check GMAT Advanced for $1399.

4. Veritas GMAT Prep

Most Extensive Practice

Veritas Prep Logo

Veritas GMAT Prep

Kaplan GMAT Prep is best if you:

  • Have a long GMAT prep time. This would allow you to maximize the 12 full-length tests and over 5000 practice questions at your disposal for 12 months. 
  • Believe you could benefit from more assistance even when you opt for a self-study course. You could access this assistance through the live online “office hours.”

 

  • Extensive practice tests and questions
  • Admissions consultation
  • Live help for self-study options
  • 12-month subscription
  • Guarantee
  • More costly compared to other options

If you are on the lookout for an extensive number of practice tests and questions, you might want to check out Veritas Prep. It has 12 full-length practice tests and over 5000 practice questions at your disposal for 12 months. 

Further, you might be interested to know that Veritas’ Prep practice questions were designed in consultation with experts in the industry. Hence, the practice test gives you an authentic GMAT experience and helpful diagnostics for a smart prep. 

Veritas Prep also offers a lot of plus with its packages such as free admissions consultation and live help for self-study options, which isn’t easy to find in other GMAT prep courses. Veritas Prep offers the following packages (4): 

  • Self Study: $699
  • Live Class: $1399
  • Private Tutorial: $2650

One of the most interesting features of the Veritas Prep self-study course is the two-hour live online “office hours” each day. This features an instructor who could help you with tricky problems and provide you with general advice. This is not something that you would easily find with other GMAT prep courses, in which customer support is mainly via email or chat.

5. The Economist GMAT Tutor

Best Packed Self-study GMAT Prep

The Economist Logo

The Economist GMAT Tutor

Kaplan GMAT Prep is best if you:

  • Require very minimal guidance. You have to consider that the Economist GMAT Tutor is designed primarily for self-study. You only have limited live 1-to-1 sessions and ask-a-tutor- questions via chat. Hence, you need to be self-motivated in your prep.  
  • Want a manageable GMAT prep course. In contrast to other preps which offer printed books and other stand-alone online resources, the Economist GMAT Tutor packs them all in a single place for easier management.

 

  • 70 point improvement guarantee
  • Mobile app that works offline
  • Flexibility in purchased packages through the credit system
  • 3-month digital The Economist subscription
  • Single-pack resource
  • No stand-alone practice test and study resources
  • The system leaves you with very minimal control over going through available materials
  • Does not allow you to go back to completed topics

A lot of resources do help, especially if you have a lot of time to prepare. However, they could also be overwhelming and confusing at times. Hence, if what you want is GMAT prep packed in one place, you need to check The Economist GMAT Tutor. 

Other GMAT prep reviews see the lack of standalone practice tests and study resources as a weakness. However, I think there is beauty with the idea that everything you need is already in one resource. You don’t need to shift back and forth from one material to the next. The drawback though is that there is very limited control over what you will cover in this GMAT prep. 

Economist GMAT Tutor also has a nice mobile app that makes sure that what you get on the desktop, you also access through your mobile device. Plus, this app runs even without an internet connection. Another thing that I like about The Economist GMAT Tutor is the flexibility it offers in your purchased packages through its credit system. Economist GMAT Tutor  prep options (5) are:     

  • Quant Package: $599
  • Premium Package: $899 
  • Genius Package: $1299

Each pack has certain credit points that you can use to purchase other features. These could also be used for extra features (e.g. book a tutor or an admissions consultant). Hence, you are afforded the flexibility to adjust your GMAT prep package.

6. Princeton Review GMAT Prep

Comprehensive Prep

Princeton Review GMAT Prep

Kaplan GMAT Prep is best if you:

  • Want a comprehensive and adaptive drill that offers smart GMAT prep but gives you enough flexibility to have free rein.  
  • Have ambitious targets for your GMAT. If you target a 700+ GMAT score, Princeton Review; GMAT 700+ might be compatible with your needs. 
  • Require more tutorial hours. The competitive rate of the Princeton Review for their package allows you to purchase more hours for more personalized GMAT prep.

 

  • 10 full-length practice tests
  • Comprehensive and adaptive learning
  • Allows you to take control of your practice prep
  • GMAT explanation sessions to support self-study
  • Better score guarantee
  • No mobile app
  • Limitation of tutoring sessions for in-person  

The Princeton Review offers a comprehensive GMAT prep course with its well designed DrillBuilder that packs learning resources in a smart way. The DrillBuilder helps you build on your skills that need to be sharpened. It also offers flexibility if you want free rein on your practice. These also come with useful videos to help you out of tricky problems. 

Further, The Princeton Review also has 10 full-length practice tests, and GMAT live explanations even for self-study packages. You might also be interested to know that it has a very reasonable price for its tutorial package which is almost close to the price offering of Magoosh. 

The Princeton Review offers the following packages (6): 

  • Self-paced course: $799
  • Fundamentals: $1399
  • Private Tutoring: $1800

If you are targeting a GMAT score of 700+, you might want to try GMAT 700+ that starts at $1899. For you to qualify for the score guarantee of 700+, however, you need a starting GMAT score of 620+. Those whose initial score is below this are guaranteed an 80 point score improvement. 

7. e-GMAT Review

Best Verbal Prep

e GMAT logo

e-GMAT Review

Kaplan GMAT Prep is best if you:

  • Require a strong prep on the verbal section, particularly on Sentence Correction. 
  • Are an independent learner that requires minimal support through a live instructor.  
  • Want to brush up on a single section in GMAT, If you are already confident about your preparation for the other sections and only need to brush up on verbal, this might be a good option for you.  

 

  • Provides personalization of study plan and helpful analytics
  • Sharp prep for sentence correction 
  • Scholaranium with a performance report
  • User-friendly platform 
  • Minimal support and guidance
  • Quant is not very strong

If you are looking for the best GMAT prep course to help you boost your preparation for the Verbal section, particularly in sentence correction, you should check e-GMAT. It offers a package that covers both Verbal and Quant. However, its GMAT prep for the Quant section is not as impressive as the Verbal. 

One of the interesting features of e-GMAT is the Scholaranium that houses practice questions, including some retired official GMAT questions. After answering every topic, a performance report will show your progress. It also has a personalized study planner, video lessons, and student support. 

Here are the course offerings of e-GMAT (7): 

  • GMAT Online (Verbal and Quant): $349
  • Verbal Online: $249
  • Quant Online: &249

You must subscribe to GMAT Online, which includes both Verbal and Quant, in order for you to access its 5 SIGma-X mock tests. These are special types of tests created by the e-GMAT that gives you feedback and analytics.

8. examPAL GMAT

Most Personalized

ExamPAL Logo

examPAL GMAT

Kaplan GMAT Prep is best if you:

  • Want a personalized GMAT prep that is tailor-fit to your strengths and will help you enhance your weak areas. 
  • Desire to learn other ways of solving the problems to help you find the one that will save you time and will be most suitable to your strengths. 
  • Are an independent learner who does not require much instruction. However, you could acquire live one-on-one sessions using your credits.

 

  • Provides personalized GMAT prep through its PALgorithm
  • Self-paced 
  • Provides flexibility in packages through the credit system
  • 70+ score improvement guarantee
  • Provides Business school admissions consultation
  • Very minimal guidance 

Looking for personalized and self-paced GMAT prep for busy people? You might want to check out examPAL GMAT prep. Most of the other GMAT prep courses offer adaptive technology but examPAL goes beyond adaptive to personalized GMAT prep.

How does examPAL personalize your GMAT prep? With its award-winning technology feature, the PALgorithm, it studies how you think and optimizes your strengths. According to examPAL, three main routes to solve a GMAT problem are Precise, Alternative, and Logical. Hence, examPAL’s algorithm will help you know the efficient routes towards the correct answers. 

With examPAL, you have access to interactive video lessons, 4 GMAC practice tests, and essay reviews, among other features for 6 months. Their packages also offer flexibility through the credit system which allows you to purchase other features not listed in your package.

If you noticed that The Economist GMAT Tutor and examPAL GMAT have similar features, it is because they collaborated in their prep products in 2020 (8). However, there are variations in the features that their packages offer.

ExamPAL offers the following GMAT prep packages(9). 

  • Genius: $1399
  • Premium: $999
  • Quant: $699

9. Target Test Prep

Best Quant GMAT Prep

Target Test Prep Logo

Target Test Prep

Kaplan GMAT Prep is best if you:

  • Are targeting a boost in your quant score specifically. However, If you are looking for a prep that covers all sections in the GMAT, you might want to look elsewhere.  
  • Are looking for hourly tutorials to supplement your GMAT prep in Quant, verbal, and IR.

 

  • High-quality lessons and resources for Quant
  • OnTarget Analytics
  • Error Tracker that enhances reflective prep
  • Provision of video explanation for every problem
  • Options for hourly private tutoring 
  • Extensive practice problems that target your Quant
  • Minimal guidance
  • No full-length practice tests
  • Quant only (except for tutorial)

Are you confident with the other GMAT sections and want to focus on boosting your Quant score? Then you might want to try Target Test Prep. Unlike other general GMAT prep, it targets specifically to optimize your Quant performance through a personalized study plan and smart analytics, among other features. 

Target Test Prep offers practice questions, video lessons, live support, and private tutoring to help boost your Quant score. However, what is really interesting about this prep is the OnTarget analytics that shows you the topics that you have covered mostly and those that need more improvement.  

Further, it also has an error tracker that will help you determine where things went wrong in your solution. It could help you reflect on your answering process so you’ll know what is keeping you from your target quant score. It also allows customized practice tests where you could specify the topics, number of questions, and difficulty level. 

Target Test Prep offers the following packages which offer the same features different subscription durations (10).  

  • GMAT Flexible Preparation: $149
  • GMAT Dedicated Study: $449
  • GMAT Maximum Learning: $499

Target Test Prep also offers private tutoring for $300 per hour. Unlike the regular packages in Target Test Prep, the private tutorials cover the Quant, Verbal, and Integrated Reasoning sections of the GMAT.

Which of these ‘bests’ is the best for you? 

Even with your list narrowed down to these nine best GMAT prep courses, choosing the best one for you is still a bit tricky. Why wouldn’t it be? Each prep course offers interesting features that could boost your GMAT score. 

Aside from the budget, of course, there are other important things that you might need to take into consideration before you decide on the best GMAT prep course for YOU. 

Target Goals

What is your target for this GMAT? And when we talk about targets, we are not just talking about your target score. It could also be a specific section that you target to improve. You have to take this into consideration when you choose your GMAT prep partner. 

Do you aim for the GMAT scores that will get you to the top MBA programs? Then, you might want to consider intensive and advanced preps like Manhattan Prep’s GMAT Advanced course or The Princeton Review’s 700+.

If you know your strengths and weaknesses, you probably already know which areas you need to target best. Do you need a GMAT prep course that covers all sections? Or, are you already confident with other sections and wish to focus more on Quant or Verbal? If you are targeting Quant prep specifically, then you might be interested in Target Test Prep. If you target improvement in the Verbal section, then you might want to check out the e-GMAT Review. 

The point is, you should clearly identify your goals for the GMAT prep and choose the course that will help you achieve them. 

Timeline

Another thing that you might want to consider is your timeline. When do you plan to take the GMAT and how much time do you have to prepare before then? If you still have a year to prep, you might want to take into consideration the GMAT prep courses’ subscription length to make sure they’d give you enough time to maximize the resources. 

Now, if you have a shorter prep time, you might want to consider more intensive preps like Manhattan Preps’ Bootcamp or private tutorials that will target the improvement of your weak areas. 

Schedule

I’m sure you don’t need to be reminded that your schedule is an important consideration as well. After all, what good is an excellent product if it collides with your other activities? 

If you are an extremely busy person, you surely need a flexible GMAT prep course such as the self-paced course. However, if you could give more time to attend classes, then live classes might be an option. The thing is, make sure you will be able to maximize the prep, given your schedule. 

Learning Style

How do you learn best? This has to be clear with you when you choose your GMAT prep course. 

  • Are you an independent learner or do you need more one-on-one guidance in your GMAT prep? 
  • Do you learn best with interactive visuals or are you more of a reader? 
  • Do you want clear directions in your study plans or do you require flexibility to take the rein to focus on areas you know you need to focus on?

Your answers will help determine your learning style. This is how you learn best. Hence, you might want to be matched with the GMAT prep that is most compatible with your style of learning.  

Self-Paced Options

Are you an independent learner? If you are, the self-study or self-paced courses might be your best match. They offer practice and learning materials such as videos, practice tests, and questions that you could work on at your own schedule and pace. 

Some of these GMAT prep courses offer minimal guidance through chat or email or live online help. You are mostly responsible however for your learning. If you are seriously considering a self-study, here are the GMAT preps that offer self-paced courses.

GMAT Prep 

Pricing 

Magoosh GMAT Prep

$249 

e-GMAT Review

$349 

Target Test Prep GMAT 

$499 

Kaplan GMAT Prep

$599 

Veritas GMAT Prep

$699 

Princeton Review GMAT Prep

$799

Manhattan Prep GMAT

$999

examPAL GMAT

$999 

The Economist GMAT Tutor

$1299 

Live and In-person Classes

Some students benefit a lot from being connected with other reviewers and have personal interactions with instructors who would guide them through the GMAT prep. If you are one of them and you could devote time for classes, you might take into consideration these GMAT prep classes. These preps give you materials for self-study but provide support through live or in-personal classes.

GMAT Prep 

Pricing 

Kaplan GMAT Prep

$1249

Veritas GMAT Prep

$1399 

Princeton Review GMAT Prep

$1399

Manhattan Prep GMAT

$1599

Private Tutorials:

Finally, if you require more personalized guidance, you might want to consider GMAT tutoring classes, even when they are more pricey. These tutorial sessions match you with an expert tutor who will help you engage in a smart prep that is based on your strengths and weaknesses.

GMAT Prep 

Pricing 

Target Test Prep GMAT 

$300 per hour

Magoosh GMAT Prep

$799 (6 hours)

Princeton Review GMAT Prep

$1800 (10 hours)

Manhattan Prep GMAT

$2450 (10 hours)

Kaplan GMAT Prep

$2499 (10 hours)

Veritas GMAT Prep

$2650 (10 hours)

The indicated prices above are regular package prices. For sale and discounted prices, check out the GMAT prep’s websites.   

Conclusion

Each GMAT prep course offers interesting features, thus the need to research and identify your best option.  

To know which GMAT prep course is suitable, however, you need to know yourself as well. What is your target? What is your learning style? Only upon knowing these will you be able to know which features you should be prioritizing in your selection. 

Reference List

  1. https://www.kaptest.com/gmat/comparison/prep-course-options
  2. https://gmat.magoosh.com/plans
  3. https://www.manhattanprep.com/gmat/prep/
  4. https://www.veritasprep.com/gmat/
  5. https://gmat.economist.com/
  6. https://www.princetonreview.com/business/gmat-test-prep?ceid=tersh-nav-honors-course
  7. https://www.princetonreview.com/business/gmat-test-prep?ceid=tersh-nav-honors-course
  8. https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/the-economist-group-and-exampal-collaborate-to-enhance-gmat-tutor-and-gre-tutor-test-prep-products-301153135.html 
  9. https://exampal.com/gmat/pricing
  10. https://gmat.targettestprep.com/plans