Are you applying to graduate programs in India or abroad? Not sure when to take the GRE? Here are some things that will help you decide when is the ideal time to take the GRE.

A common notion is that the ideal time to take the GRE is during the fall as most universities welcome university applications during the fall. However, there are a couple of things you should consider before choosing your GRE test date and before you decide when to take the GRE. Let us take a look at some of these factors that will influence your decision of when to take the GRE.

Factors to Consider Before Taking the GRE

We have listed a few things you should factor in when deciding to take the GRE.

Application Deadlines

The first and foremost thing to look out for when deciding to take the GRE are application deadlines of the universities you wish to apply to. It is important to note that the GRE score reports arrive at the universities you have authorised two to three weeks from your test date. Hence, keep a track of university application deadlines and make sure the GRE score reports reach the universities well before the deadline.


When choosing your GRE test date, you should consider how long you would need to prepare for the GRE effectively. You can draft a rough study plan based on your learning pace to analyze how long it will take you to prepare for the GRE. However, you must be familiar with the pattern of GRE exam to be able to draft an efficient study plan. Since there is no ideal preparation time, you can choose to prepare for the GRE within two months or 6 months.

Availability of Test Dates

The third thing to consider is the availability of GRE test dates. There are no specific GRE dates as the GRE is available to you all through the year. However, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, most test centers are temporarily shut or are not operational anymore. Hence, before you register for the GRE; make it a point to check with the test centers near you if they are available on the test date you are planning to choose. If the test center near to you is unavailable, you can use your GRE login to log onto the website and look at the list of available and alternative test centres. However, make sure to call ahead and check if they are operating before you register for a slot.

GRE Retake

Last but not the least, always choose your GRE test date in a manner that you have enough time to retake the GRE if the scenario requires you to do so. You can take the GRE again after 21 days of your previous attempt and you can take it up to 5 times within 365 days from your test date. Additionally, you should consider the amount of time you might need to prepare for the GRE retake.

As you can see, there is no ideal time to take the GRE as it varies from person to person. We hope you now have clarity on when is a good time for you to take the GRE. So, what is holding you back? Register for the GRE today to fulfil your dream of studying abroad!