The Princeton Review GRE Prep Review 2023 : Is it Worth the Price?

Can the Princeton Review help you with the GRE?  Find out if the Princeton Review GRE test prep courses are the right fit for you to help you score higher on the GRE.

The Princeton Review test prep brand has been around since 1981. It quickly established an enviable reputation for effective test preparation. Does Princeton Review offer a GRE test prep course that matches your needs? Here’s a closer look at its various courses to help you answer that question for yourself.

Most Comprehensive with Live Classes
Princeton Review
  • GRE test prep with live classes.
  • Free trial available.2700+ Practice Questions.
  • 8 High-quality Practice Exams which simulate real GRE experience and difficulty
  • 5 Points improvement guarantee.
  • 4 months subscriptions.
  • Self-Paced Course: $399, Fundamentals: $1,099, GRE 162+: $2,149,GRE 162+ Tutoring: $156/hour
  • Higher Score Guarantee. Curriculum centered on interactive learning modules

Princeton Review GRE Course Options

GRE Course Features
GRE Self-Paced ($499) · 8 practice tests

· At least 61 online drills and lessons

· At least 2,570 practice questions

· Live online classes for Math Fundamentals

· If you’re not happy with your GRE test score, you can retake the course for free

GRE Ultimate ($1,199) · 24 hours of live online instruction

· At least 180 hours of total instruction and practice

· At least 470 online drills

· At least 3,500 practice questions

· 8 computer adaptive-by-section practice exams

· Interactive score reports

Quant 162+ Course ($1,499) · A guaranteed score of at least 162 on the Quant section

· 25 instruction hours

· 1-on-1 personal study manager

· At least 3,600 GRE exam-style questions

· 4.5 hours of Verbal Live Online sessions

· At least 50 hours of self-guided verbal instruction

· Verbal section-specific practice tests

· At least 470 online drills

· At least 180 hours of online tools

· Interactive score reports

· 8 computer-adaptive practice exams

GRE Tutoring · 10 hours of instruction, $1,800

· 18 hours of instruction, $3,000

You get 5 packages to choose from. I will cover those one by one.

Option 1: GRE 10 points+

Let’s first talk about the GRE 10 points+ guarantee prep course. This is an online self-paced course that normally costs $899 and you can get $200-$300 off with coupon codes.

The course offers different learning paths for students to follow based on 30, 60 or 90 days. .The standard path for this course is 8 weeks.To qualify for the score guarantee, you need to complete at least 30 hours of video lessons, 470+ drills and 5 full-length practice tests.

The course is taught by multiple on-camera instructors and includes a total of 8 practice tests. It also offers live math support and some really useful features like interactive questions in the video lessons, adaptive drills that adjust to your level, and detailed score reports Before you sign up, you can check out the full syllabus on their website to see the week-by-week schedule, including how many practice tests are included and specific goals for math and verbal.

This course is ideal for students who want structured materials and learning paths but also the flexibility to go at their own pace. It’s probably best suited for students starting around the average score who are motivated to put in the work to guarantee their score goes up.


Option 2: GRE Fundamentals

The Princeton Review also offers an online GRE Fundamentals course for $1,199. This course includes 24 hours of live online classes over 8 weeks. You can choose either a weekly or biweekly schedule.

During the course, you’ll take 5 full-length GRE practice tests. The course also includes 8 adaptive practice tests and 180+ hours of online tools with thousands of practice questions.

Unlike the 10 points+ course, the GRE Fundamentals course doesn’t specify a score increase guarantee. However, if your score doesn’t improve after completing all course requirements, you can get a full tuition refund.

This course is best for students starting with below-average scores who need to build up their basics. It could also work well for students who don’t need a minimum score or aren’t aiming for highly competitive schools.

Some students may take this course to build up their fundamentals, then pursue 1-on-1 tutoring or another option to aim for a higher guaranteed score increase.

The course includes live math review sessions and all the standard tools like interactive video lessons, adaptive drills, and score reports. The main difference from the 10 points+ course is the additional focus on math foundations.

Overall, this self-paced course with live instruction is a good option if you want to systematically improve your skills and get a solid score increase, even if you’re starting at a lower level. 

Option 3: Guaranteed 162+ Score

Now let us talk about 162+ guaranteed course. This is their most comprehensive GRE prep option with 45 hours of live online instruction and 20 hours of extra help sessions.

The schedule includes 18 2.5-hour classes over 9 weeks, meeting twice a week. You’ll also take 5 full-length GRE practice tests. The course includes over 4,400 practice drills and the standard 8 adaptive tests. This premium course costs $2,399.

One thing that really stands out about this option is that you get physical GRE prep books from The Princeton Review – their Quant 162+ Manual and Verbal 162+ Manual.

This course is ideal for highly motivated students ready to commit to an intensive schedule. The benefit is Princeton Review’s 162+ score guarantee – they promise you’ll get at least 162 in Quant and Verbal if you start with 156 or higher in both. If you start lower, they guarantee at least a 6-point increase in both sections. This is the highest score guarantee of any GRE prep course.

The live online classes cover everything from basics to advanced strategies. With the books, online tools, and score guarantee, this course is really the “premium” option for raising your GRE score as much as possible.

If you put in the work and follow the schedule, this course will give you everything you need to dominate the GRE. The instructors provide a ton of guidance and motivation to help keep you on track. The score guarantee also helps give you confidence that your work will pay off!

Overall, while this is Princeton Review’s most expensive course, the live instruction, comprehensive materials and amazing score guarantee make it worth the investment for students who want to maximize their GRE score.

Option 4: Guaranteed 165+ Tutoring

Next, The Princeton Review’s GRE 165+ personal tutoring program. This is their most exclusive and expensive GRE prep option, with up to 32 hours of one-on-one tutoring from an expert GRE instructor.

The tutoring can be done either online or in-person, depending on where you’re located. The program builds on their self-paced GRE course by tailoring lessons directly to your needs.

After looking at all the details, we don’t think this option would be worth the high price for most GRE test takers, especially given the score guarantee terms. If you don’t start with at least 159 in each section, the guarantee only promises a 5-point score increase per section, not 165.

At $156 per hour and a minimum of 32 hours of tutoring for the score guarantee, you’d pay over $4,000 for this program. The cost is really only worthwhile if you’re already scoring around 160 in each section and determined to get the maximum score possible.

For most students, Princeton Review’s 162+ live online course is a much better value. It costs under $2,500 and guarantees at least a 162 in Quant and Verbal if you start with 156 or higher in both, or a 6-point increase if you start lower.

While personalized GRE tutoring can be extremely helpful, the high price of Princeton Review’s program likely isn’t practical or necessary for the vast majority of students. Only those already scoring very highly who want to maximize their scores would truly benefit from such an expensive private option.

Option 5: Self-Paced Course

The Princeton Review also offers an affordable self-paced GRE prep course for $499. This online course includes the standard 8 full-length practice tests that Princeton Review is known for.

However, the self-paced course does NOT include any live instruction or classes. And the score “guarantee” is really just an offer to retake the course for free if you’re not satisfied with your GRE score.

This course is perfect for motivated, independent students who prefer to study on their own schedule. While the self-paced course doesn’t provide the live guidance of Princeton Review’s other options, it gives you all the high-quality materials and practice resources you need to prepare for the GRE on your own time. You can follow the suggested study plans or adapt the course to your own pace.

The eight full-length practice tests are a key part of any Princeton Review course and help ensure you get experience with the actual GRE before test day. Although you don’t get an official score guarantee, you can retake the course for free if you need more preparation after getting your actual GRE scores.

Princeton Review GRE video lecture

The instructors use smart filming techniques and digital whiteboards to clearly present lessons. 

The instructions and video lessons are extremely helpful, well-delivered and taught by knowledgeable instructors. I really enjoyed the essential video overviews that start each unit.

Each lesson follows a similar pattern:

  1. A slide previewing what you’ll learn
  2. A video lesson explaining the topic in depth, with examples. These engaging videos provide real instruction and I found them very effective.
  3. Interactive drills and questions to reinforce the concepts
  4. A self-evaluation so you can see if you’ve mastered the material or need to review

The units also include adaptive drills through Princeton’s Drill Smart program. The drills get progressively harder as you improve, or easier if you struggle. This mimics the actual GRE and is a valuable tool. I highly recommend using Drill Smart.

You can follow Princeton’s recommended order or choose your own. I suggest following their formulas. The course provides 470+ drills or 3,500+ questions, comparable to competitors like Kaplan. There are over 180 hours of total prep material between the lessons, drills and practice tests.

The structure, with video overviews, interactive video lessons and drills, is highly effective for learning and retention. The materials are presented in an easy-to-use, professional format. The course gives you a rock-solid foundation and strategies to strengthen your quant and verbal skills. By following all the resources, you’ll gain the knowledge and confidence to maximize your GRE score.

This includes video lessons, drills for strategies, math, verbal and the essay. The lessons cover essential concepts, with interactive questions to test your understanding. The drills provide adaptive practice to strengthen your skills.

For strategies, lessons cover approaches for each GRE section, like how to eliminate wrong answers or estimate math solutions. The math section covers arithmetic, algebra, geometry and more. Verbal includes reading comprehension, vocabulary-building and grammar. The essay lessons provide a template for writing high-scoring essays on the GRE.

Plenty of Practice Tests

All of Princeton’s packages include 8 full-length computer-adaptive practice tests. This is more than any other GRE prep company offers, and provides a major advantage for students.

The practice tests simulate the real GRE experience using adaptive technology that adjusts difficulty based on your performance. The interface, questions, and format are highly representative of the actual GRE.After each practice test, Princeton provides an interactive score report that analyzes your performance in detail. The metrics and filtering tools allow you to see exactly which areas and question types you need to improve on.

The reports help you identify weaknesses to focus your studying. If timing was an issue, work on pacing. If you struggled in a math area, brush up on that concept. The reports give a customized study plan based on your needs.

Analyze your practice test scores and reports to best prepare for the GRE. See which questions/topics you struggle with and develop strategies to improve. Review the questions you missed to learn the appropriate approaches.

For many, Princeton’s stellar practice tests and reports alone make their courses worth the investment.

Live Online Sessions

Several live online sessions are hosted by different Princeton Review instructors who discuss challenging topics on the GRE that some students may struggle with. These sessions are available multiple times per week and are scheduled in the evening, making them convenient for students who have a full-time job or are attending school.

The classes cover complex GRE topics in depth while simplifying concepts and breaking down challenging subjects. Instructors are very knowledgeable about the GRE. However, some classes can be on the larger size, which may result in spending extra time on questions that some students already understand. It is recommended for students who favor live or classroom learning.

In the class I took, the instructor was great at explaining difficult math concepts in an easy to understand way. She knew the material inside and out and did a great job of communicating with the students. However, the larger class size meant we sometimes got bogged down by students who needed extra explanation on topics most of us already grasped. The instructor tried her best to handle questions efficiently while moving through the material, but we occasionally got slowed down.

Private Tutoring

If you need personalized guidance to achieve your goal GRE score, Princeton Review offers private tutoring packages. Their options include:

Targeted Tutoring which provides 10 hours of one-on-one instruction for around $1,800. This focused tutoring covers the areas you need most help with. Comprehensive Tutoring offers 18 hours of private tutoring for about $3,000. This covers a wider range of topics to prepare you for the entire GRE.

The 165+ Tutoring package guarantees you’ll score 165 or higher on the GRE with 32 hours of private tutoring for $4,500 or more depending on location. The tutoring is available either in-person or live online. So even if there are no Princeton Review centers near you, you can work with their expert GRE tutors remotely over video chat.

3 Levels of Tutoring Experience


Plenty of other GRE test prep brands offer tutoring, with experienced tutors to help you out. But with Princeton Review, you can actually pick a certain level of experience and expertise.

Private Level Tutors

These are the tutors who have at least 40 hours of intense training with instruction time under their belt as well. These are the “newbies”, but they’re all carefully chosen to begin with.

Master Level Tutors

This time, the tutors have at least 500 hours of experience with actual tutoring. All of these Master Level tutors have helped students score high marks.

Premier Level Tutors

These are the cream of the crop, as they’ve proven themselves by helping their students achieve exceptional GRE results. All of these tutors have at least 1,000 hours of tutoring experience.



Here are some of the advantages that you’ll enjoy with the Princeton Review GRE test prep courses.

Lots of Guarantees

Using any of the Princeton Review GRE test prep courses requires a rather large investment of your budget. At least Princeton Review offers several types of guarantees that help reassure you that you’re not wasting your money.

Money-Back Guarantee

If you’ve taken the GRE before, Princeton Review guarantees that you’ll get a better score after you complete any of their GRE test prep courses (and you actually apply yourself). This is a common type of guarantee among the various GRE test prep brands, but it’s gratifying that Princeton Review also offers this guarantee.

Satisfaction Guarantee

With this guarantee, what matters is your current satisfaction regarding your test practice results. This lets you extend your use of the Princeton Review GRE test prep course up to a year.

Readiness Guarantee

If you’re feeling unsure about your level of GRE preparation, you can retake the entire GRE prep course you finished.

162+ for Quant

This is the guarantee that specifically comes with the Quant 162+ Course. There are several conditions for this to work, starting with having previously attained a GRE Quant score of at least 156.

Trial Option

There is a free 14-day test drive including a single full-length computer-adaptive practice test, along with a detailed report to go with your score.

Some (but not all) of the interactive video lessons are accessible, and you can use DrillSmart as well.

With this option, you can pull out within 2 weeks if you’re not satisfied with the methods and materials without spending any money. Even if you are pretty confident that Princeton Review is the right course for you, the trial can still help you because when you do sign up for the full course, you won’t be surprised by what you get.

Essay Feedback

Plenty of other GRE test prep courses don’t offer any feedback for essays, since it often needs to be done manually.

But Princeton Review has the LiveGrader feature that involves an expert scoring your essay section of the test.

In addition, you get helpful tips on how to improve your ability to write essays so that you’re able to write one that gets a higher grade in the actual GRE. You may be able to develop improved writing habits that will help you score higher on the test. Being able to communicate your ideas more effectively and logically can also help with your future career.


For all the benefits that the Princeton Review offers for their GRE test prep courses, there are some drawbacks you need to consider.

Somewhat Expensive

On the face of it, the basic package comes with a reasonable price. The problem is that this package feels inadequate, especially when compared to the next upgrade level.

Go for the Ultimate Package, and you enjoy considerably more practice questions, many more drills, and of course the 24 hours of live online instruction that you don’t get with the basic package.

However, going for the Ultimate course will cost you $1,199. That’s more than double the price of the basic Self-Paced course.

Short Access Time

Most brands offer their GRE test prep courses in the standard 6-month period. This is so common it’s basically the industry standard.

It’s a bit bewildering to see that Princeton Review, for all the quality that comes with their test prep packages, only offers 4 months of access. (It’s actually a few days shorter than that since the access is only for 120 days.)

That means more frantic studying while trying to cram more review hours to cover the thousands of practice questions available.

Some people who are also working while reviewing for the GRE, may not have enough practice time to cover everything they need to.

No Mobile App

Just about everyone these days carries their smartphone or tablet with them wherever they go. So, it would be nice if you’re able to use a mobile app to access your review resources whenever you have free time during the day, even if you’re out and about. Unfortunately, the Princeton Review does not offer this yet.

No Custom Quizzes

Some of the other GRE test prep courses offered by other brands allow you to set up your own quizzes. This lets you focus on particular areas of the GRE. However, you don’t get this feature with Princeton Review.

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  • One of the most popular GRE programs.
  • Free trial available. 6 months subscription.
  • 1400+ Practice Questions. 3 Practice Exams. 
  • Available online on-demand. No in-person classes.
  • 5 Points improvement guarantee.
  • $169-$499
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Kaplan GRE

Kaplan GRE

  • Both Live and on-demand class options with a wide selection of courses.
  • Score higher or money-back guarantee/repeat the course.
  • 7 full-length practice exams and 5000+ practice questions.
  • On-Demand Course: $449 ,Online Course: $999, Question bank & Practice Test Bundle: $199, Practice Test 4-Pack: $149, Question bank: $69 ,Tutoring: $2,299

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Princeton Review

Princeton Review

  • GRE test prep with live classes.
  • Free trial available.2700+ Practice Questions.
  • 8 High-quality Practice Exams which simulate real GRE experience and difficulty
  • 5 Points improvement guarantee.
  • 4 months subscriptions.
  • Self-Paced Course: $399, Fundamentals: $1,099, GRE 162+: $2,149,GRE 162+ Tutoring: $156/hour
  • Higher Score Guarantee. Curriculum centered on interactive learning modules
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  • One of the most tech-savvy platforms for customized study plan
  • Interactive lessons with high-quality graphics and videos.
  • Provides a lot of free resources including a 5-day free trial.
  • Seven-point score improvement guarantee or your money back.
  • Affordable pricing $38-$345.
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Manhattan Prep GRE

Manhattan Prep GRE

  • One of the most effective GRE prep programs with great feedback from real students.
  • 7 Days Free trial available.
  • The content materials here have been created and taught by GRE experts, who have all scored in the top 1%.
  • Video lessons will adapt depending on your answers.
  • On-demand course pricing starts from $299.
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Who Should Buy It?

There are several factors to consider before choosing the right prep course for you. Make sure to take into account your budget, learning style, how much time you have before you need to take the exam and start applications, how confident you feel about the text already, etc.

Let’s take a stab at describing the ideal Princeton Review student:

  • Can afford it: The basic package isn’t really too expensive at $499, but it’s not a bargain either. What’s more, the other GRE review courses offered by other brands can be more affordable, and they seem to offer more features. The Ultimate package should give you the training and confidence you need to tackle the GRE. However, you do have to cover the Ultimate price tag of $1,199.
  • Determined: Keep in mind that you have less than 4 months to cram everything into your head. You’ll have to fit in 24 hours of live online instruction, 180 hours of total instruction and practice, 470 online drills, 3,500 practice questions, and 8 computer adaptive-by-section practice exams if you go with the Ultimate package. You’ll need a lot of self-discipline to go through all of these in a very short period of time. You’ll have to find a way to deal with all the stress, while still ending up relaxed and confident for the real GRE.
  • Likes multiple approaches: The Princeton Review packages come with a lot of different resources. You will want to fully take advantage of the different modes of learning to do your best.
  • Wants the option of personal assistance: The customized tutoring options and 1-on-1 coach are great features from the Princeton Review.

If you want to compare it with Kaplan, you may check our detailed comparison here. You may also check our top 8 suggestions here.


Is it expensive? Yes, it’s a bit pricey.

But is it worth the expense? Also yes. You do get your money’s worth.

Princeton Review is a famous brand not just because of the Ivy League connection inherent in the name of the brand itself. It’s famous because it actually does work. You really do improve your readiness for the GRE once you go through the Ultimate GRE test prep course.

Lots of people can attest to this fact. It is why people keep shelling out the money for these prep courses. It’s why Princeton Review is confident enough to offer all these money-back guarantees. They know that you’ll be satisfied in the end.

Using the Princeton Review to prepare for the GRE is a serious investment. But it’s a worthwhile investment. You’re more assured of getting the score you want, and then getting into the graduate program you prefer.

With the first paycheck, you get due to your advanced degree, you should be able to recoup your investment easily. Then you can enjoy the ROI for the rest of your career!

Most Comprehensive with Live Classes
Princeton Review
  • GRE test prep with live classes.
  • Free trial available.2700+ Practice Questions.
  • 8 High-quality Practice Exams which simulate real GRE experience and difficulty
  • 5 Points improvement guarantee.
  • 4 months subscriptions.
  • Self-Paced Course: $399, Fundamentals: $1,099, GRE 162+: $2,149,GRE 162+ Tutoring: $156/hour
  • Higher Score Guarantee. Curriculum centered on interactive learning modules

The Princeton Review GRE’s Official Website