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People's opinions on this question vary from one to another, and I think the re-applicant essay matters. And I just found that the re-applicant essay is the hardest part. Still working on the essays.;(
A colleague is applying to Tuck this year as his only target. While I've helped him with his essays and I think he'll get in... he expects the worse (don't know why) and is just trying to leverage the reapplicant status for Tuck next year if he doesn't get in. Tuck offers 30 min review to those denied if requested and has a roughly 40% reapplicant admit rate. If you check businessweek I believe you can see the reapplicant admit rates posted. In general, the % accepted looks much better than the normal admit rate. That means little if you are not competitive or write poor essays though.
I am a re-applicant myself at some of my schools this year. i think it really depends on what happens last year. If you essentially submit the same application you had last year, you might as well save your money. If you make improvements to your essays/story and/or have done something interesting to add to your overall application over the last year I think it is worthwhile.