Visiting HBS is a great way to become better informed about the school as you make your way through the application process. Having the opportunity to speak to students in person and sit in on classes will help you assess whether HBS is a good fit for you and will allow you to speak more intelligently about the school and MBA program in your essay and interview.
We recommend that you register for a visit through the admissions department, but if no class visits are listed as available you can contact any of our admissions vice presidents and we can arrange to take you to one or more classes with us. We can also meet with you for lunch or to answer any questions you have about the MBA admissions process. The admissions department also offers information sessions, which are worth attending if they fit your schedule.
A visit is not a requirement for admission - several of us never visited HBS prior to arriving for classes this fall, and others did not visit until coming to Boston to interview with admissions. Geography obviously plays a role - if you are deployed, stationed overseas or on the west coast, you will have a harder time planning a visit than an applicant from the East Coast. Last year, most military applicants who interviewed did not have the option of interviewing at a hub location - our only options were on campus at HBS or via Skype or satellite phone. Given that fact, you may choose to delay visiting until you find out if you are selected for an interview. If that is the case, we recommend you schedule an on-campus interview at a day and time that would allow you to spend a half-day or a full-day around campus prior to your interview.