Not all guitar lessons are the same. In the same way as all school teachers not being the same. So which to choose private guitar lessons or internet downloads. Which is the best way to learn? There are a variety of ways to learn to play guitar - the real challenge is to find out the most effective way for you.
Firstly what learning goals do you have, what you do aim to achieve, and how long do you expect it to take? Do you want to be professional, semi-pro or strictly an amateur guitarist? Also have you thought about what style of playing will best serve you best?
Realistically what do you hope to achieve in the next year?
Jam with other guitarists and musicians?
Play for friends and family?
To learn to play your favourite songs?
Guitar lessons are a strong discipline like any learning experience. Once you decide to learn this instrument, you have to persevere and stay focused. Here is a quick 'learn guitar review'.
Online Internet lessons
Before you choose to take lessons from any internet tutorial, it is best to seek out some reviews of the options available. Otherwise it is dead easy to spendout on a system that doesn't suit you at all.
How strongly do you value your spare time?
It's dead easy to waste 10 hours or so a week, mindlessly surfing the web looking out for guitar tips. Whereas if you know what you are doing and have located a strong training system you can spend that time playing guitar and learning the things you really wanted to play.
Internet lessons are definitely cheaper than private lessons, they are more convenient, at your own time and leisure. They are also in the comfort of your own home with no need to travel anywhere.
One major drawback is that if you make mistakes (without realising it), there is nobody to tell you about them! Also nobody there to ask about something you are not clear about.
Private guitar lessons
This is the most effective ways to learn, but it costs! You'll get one on one tuition, and any bad habits will be nipped in the bud. The instructor is usually well qualified and you can swap and change styles as you see fit.
It is always best to use a teacher who specialises in the style you predominantly wantb to learn. There's no point in taking a classically trained teacher to show you how to play blues guitar!
The world is full of classically trained guitar teachers who have not the slightest clue about modern music. It may also be useful to do some research on the teacher, such as famous students.
Drawbacks include being tied down to a fixed time and place, and of course the excessive cost.
The bottom line
There is no substitute for hard work no matter what you choose. If you haven't got the will to practice over and over, it's probably best to save your cash!