The Official Guide for GMAT 2018 – Should You Buy It?


The Official Guide for GMAT 2018 was just released and is available for purchase. The 2018 version of the guide has a few updates that could prove useful to you as you study for the GMAT.

However, are the changes so profound that you should buy the 2018 guide over the 2017 guide?

We address this and other questions below.

Can I Use the Official Guide for GMAT 2017 Instead?


The Official Guide for GMAT 2017 is a comprehensive study aid that is useful for preparing for the 2018 test as well.

If you already have the 2017 guide, you can get started studying right now and then as the 2018 components are released (more on that in a minute) you can move on and continue your studies with the 2018 materials.

When Will the Official Guide for GMAT 2018 Be Available?

The Official Guide 2018 is already available from the publisher, Wiley.

However, only certain online components are available at the time of writing. This includes the quantitative and verbal questions. The integrated reasoning questions will not come online until later in the summer of 2017.

Regarding pricing, the Official Guide for GMAT 2018 Bundle, which includes the Quantitative Review Book, the Verbal Review Book, and the Guide + Online Book, is $79.95 through Wiley. The same bundle can be pre-ordered through Amazon for $47.58.

What’s New in the Official Guide 2018?

In addition to 15 percent new questions over the 2017 Official Guide, the 2018 guide has a new look that reflects the updated format of the GMAT for 2018. Getting familiar with that format could prove very useful before taking the 2018 test.

Additionally, the online platform for 2018 gets a substantial refresh, making it faster, more detailed, and more user-friendly. In fact, the Official Guide 2018 uses Wiley’s Efficient Learning Platform for online learning, which is a feature-rich environment in which you can wrest all of the information you can out of the Official Guide 2018.

There are plenty of other updates of which you should be aware. Look for an upcoming post in which we compare the 2017 and 2018 guides.

Should You Buy the Official Guide 2018?

Whether you buy the Official Guide for GMAT 2018 will depend on a number of factors.
First, if you’re taking the GMAT this year, there’s no need to buy the 2018 guide, unless you intend to re-take the GMAT and cannot do so until the 2018 test is released.

Second, if you already have a 2017 guide, the vast majority of it will be highly similar to the content in the 2018 guide. If you’re on a budget and cannot afford the 2018 guide, the 2017 guide is still a valuable tool for studying for the GMAT.

Third, also consider the differences that do exist between the 2017 and 2018 versions of the Official Guide.

As noted earlier, the 2018 version is formatted in a new way that’s reflective of the updated GMAT exam for 2018. There is certainly something to be said for preparing for the GMAT using a format that more closely aligns with what the test will look like.

Additionally, the upgrades to the online component of the 2018 guide might prove valuable as well. One of the complaints about the online experience in previous versions of the Official Guide is that it was sluggish, light on content, and an all-around poor user experience.

With the Official Guide 2018, you get access to a much-improved online experience which will only help you more as you prepare for the 2018 GMAT.

Final Thoughts

When making the decision of whether or not to buy the Official Guide for GMAT 2018, it will really come down to timing, expense, and whether you feel the new features offered in the 2018 guide are worth it.

If time is of the essence and you can’t wait for all the components of the 2018 guide to be released, use the 2017 guide instead. Likewise, if you already have the 2017 guide and are on a tight budget, you can forego the 2018 guide as the bulk of the information is similar between the two.

However, if you have the resources and the time, you should strongly consider getting the Official Guide for GMAT 2018. With updated questions, a new format that gives you a preview of the changes in the 2018 GMAT, and a better online experience, the 2018 guide is worth the wait and the added expense.

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