So you scheduled your GMAT and then realized that your wedding was on the same day. Or you scheduled your GMAT and ended up too sick to take the test. Or, maybe you just scheduled your GMAT and realized that you won’t be ready to take the test at the time that you originally signed up for.
There are a bunch of valid reasons why you might want to reschedule your GMAT. The nice thing about the test is that the GMAC offers it so often that you really can take it whenever you like.
So, even though we do recommend that you schedule the exam when you start your studies (this helps to commit to the process), you shouldn’t worry too much. There is no shortage of days on which to schedule and if you’ll end up having to reschedule, than aside from the $60 fee there will likely be no difficulties.
So… I can reschedule my GMAT?
Yes! I’ll give you a moment for your sigh of relief. The GMAC (the people who make and administer the GMAT) make it really easy to reschedule the test, but it’s also an incredible money making opportunity for them.
If your test date is farther than 7 days away, you will pay $60 to reschedule your GMAT. Some websites say it costs $50 to reschedule, but that, unfortunately, is outdated information.
If you are within 7 days of your test date, it will cost $250 to reschedule your GMAT, the same price as registering in the first place. In this case, there is usually no real point in rescheduling – just schedule another exam, which will cost you the exam same amount of money. The only case in which this makes sense is if something unexpected happened and you want to move the exam date by a week or so but not by the standard 16 days GMAC requires you wait between consecutive takes of the exam.
If you are within 24 hours of your scheduling testing time, you can not reschedule your GMAT. Your exam will count as a no-show and you won’t receive any score for that date. Fortunately, a no-show doesn’t not appear on the score report that’s sent to the schools you’re applying to. Note that if this happens (we hope it doesn’t!) you will not get your money back.
How to reschedule your test
It’s a really simple process for rescheduling. First things first, sit down with a calendar and choose a reasonable test date. If you’re dealing with an emergency situation, try to reschedule for a slot that’s far enough away that you won’t be bothered by that emergency but soon enough that you don’t lose track of any prep you have committed to so far.
- Log onto your account on MBA.com. This will always and forever be your hub for any registration-related matters.
- Click Future Exams on the first page you see after login. Then click Actions and Reschedule exam to be taken to the rescheduling prompt.
- On the rescheduling page, select your testing center, your new exam date, and the time you’ll take the test. If you don’t see the exact date you were looking for, choose the most convenient one closest to it, whether that’s a day before or after, or the nearest Saturday. Do what works best for you.
- Pay the fee. Again, that’s $60 if you’re farther than 7 days out, $250 if you’re less than 7 days out.
- Watch out for the confirmation email. Make sure you got it and follow up with the MBA by phone if you haven’t, just to confirm everything got rescheduled correctly.
- Mark it on your calendar. I know this sounds obvious, but you wouldn’t want to forget your new exam date just because you rescheduled.
You can do this all over the phone, but it’s really not as easy as doing it online and having all of the dates in front of you. There is an additional $10 fee for booking over the phone.
How many times can I reschedule a single test?
Hopefully, you won’t have to reschedule at all! With that said, if you do need to reschedule again, you’ll need to schedule a time slot within 6 months of your original testing date.
Make sure that the time you’re choosing is absolutely when you want to take the test, since you don’t want to pay that (minimum) $60 fee again. The GMAT places no limit on the number of times you’re allowed to reschedule, but maybe you should!
So, if you can’t take the GMAT within 6 months of your original testing date, you’ll have to cancel your testing date. The GMAT also lets you do this, but if you do so within 7 days of your test, that $250 registration fee and any $60 rescheduling fees you paid will not be refunded to you. If you cancel more than 7 days prior to your test, you will be refunded just $80, which is better than nothing.
Okay, but should I reschedule? The Do’s and Don’t’s
Basically, you should only reschedule the GMAT if it’s a no-brainer.
There are some very legitimate life reasons why you may want to reschedule the GMAT, so let’s run through some scenarios.
Do reschedule your GMAT if you’re dealing with an emergency. You should not take this test while you’re dealing with any sort of difficult situation. You want this testing experience to go as well as possible, so don’t let life get in the way of you obtaining the score that makes you proud. If you’re running up against a deadline with a business school app, you might want to delay that whole process to deal with the emergency anyway.
Do reschedule if you’ve decided to apply to an MBA program later and you haven’t prepared much. This is really common. Someone decides to apply to an MBA program because she hates her job, or because it suddenly seems like a good idea, or whatever other reason, and then suddenly decides to hold off to put good work into the application process. You should reschedule and give yourself ample time to prep.
Don’t reschedule just because you want to be doing better on your practice tests. You can always take the test again! In fact, the experience of taking a real test in the actual testing environment is an invaluable one. You’ll get a sense of what goes well and what goes wrong when you’re taking the real deal. Taking the GMAT in person is an invaluable opportunity to diagnose what you need to work on for the next one.
And remember, schools like to see students who have improved their scores! Really, what they want to know is whether you can work hard and improve at difficult tasks.
Don’t reschedule if time is of the essence. If an admissions deadline is right around the corner, you should really just keep your test date. Be honest with yourself once you see your scores about whether they’re good enough for the schools you’re applying for.
There’s no need to be a perfectionist if your goal is to get into business school ASAP. Be OK with whatever GMAT score you get and then make the rest of your application sing. And hey, you can always take the GMAT again if you need to apply again next year. Hopefully the next time around, you’ll do the studying and prep you need to get that optimal GMAT score.