I have passed my PPL theory exam about a week ago.
I found people's input really helpful in preparing for my exam so I thought having now sat it I would provide some insight they may help others.
3.5 hour length. This seems like a really long time, however I noticed that about 1/2 way through my allocated time I was only 25% of the way through the questions. Maybe I'm a bit slower than average but I skipped some of the more involved questions initially when I noticed how slow I was progressing as they chewed up lots of time. I finished my first run through of the exam with about 20 minutes spare that I then used to go back and check questions. Skipping questions I was unsure about exposed questions that I was more confident with and answering these questions with conviction gave me confidence that I did have the knowledge.
Permitted Materials. I purchased/obtained most of the permitted materials, except for CAR. I didn't use all of the them, but I definitely advise buying/obtaining all of them. Shell out the money, there is no point trying to save a few bob, having come this far. If I had to resit I would also now go and purchase the CAR. Also use your 15 allowable tags for AIP wisely.
Water and Lollies. I found the exam quite fatiguing. I was allowed to take in two clear water bottles and some lollies. Having water and a snack was definitely useful. I think this varies from exam to exam, and from invigilator to invigilator. The lollies were in clear unmarked bag. Medication. If nothing else take fast acting Panadol with you. The invigilator will obtain your medication and bring it to you if you need it. If you have a headache after the first ten minutes you may be really compromised.
The questions were extremely diverse and I'm glad that I really exploited Bob's books and resources to the max. Don't approach the exam thinking "I probably won't get any questions on......." you very well may! And you may get several! There were two topics that I didn't deeply enough learn, and they caught me out.
Home mock exams. I found when practicing exams making them as real as possible a simulation really helped. Turn off your phone, set a timer, don't be sipping tea and coffee, sit them at the same time as your booked exam will be etc....
Prepare, prepare, prepare!
I'm not a youngster anymore and this was the first exam I had sat for over 20 years.
It's so rewarding getting the positive outcome at the end. I'm still on a high and it's been over a week!