final few days
tips for the final few days up until the big day
Make travel arrangements
Once you know the date and time of your exam, then start making arrangements to get yourself down there. If you already live near by, then the following will be of little interest to you, so feel free to skip ahead. For people travelling from afar, the journey itself can add a lot of stress to an already stressful period! However, with some helpful advice, you can reduce the stress.
Firstly consider going down by train, not only is Euston station right next door, but you wont have to think about driving or parking in London.
If you do decide to drive, there are a few car parks near by. Some hotels have their own (the Ibis nearby being one example), but if your hotel doesn't then there is an underground car park available at Euston station itself, which can be booked in advance online. For more up-to-date information about parking options then please click here to visit parkopedia.
As for driving through London. The RCGP building and Euston station, are currently just outside the congestion charge zone.
Obviously this advice wont apply if you live local. However if you don't, we found that staying the night before really helped. It can be stressful enough getting to London, therefore arriving the night before, and getting a good nights rest is ideal before the big day. In addition, staying the night before allows you some time in-case of unexpected travel delays.
There is the possibility of staying inside Euston RCGP building, however you may find (like we did) that it was fully booked. Luckily if that is the case, or you simply don't fancy staying in the RCGP building the night before, there are plenty of hotels near by. We used travel comparison websites to help find the cheapest deal locally. Unfortunately London being London, we couldn't find much locally for below £100.
No last minute revising!
Once it gets within a week or so of the exam, then start winding down your revision.Resist the temptation to do last minute cramming, this is only likely to burn you out, and rob you of the spontaneity and enthusiasm you will need for the big day. The harsh reality is that if you haven't done enough by now, then its unlikely that any additional revision will make the difference.
To ensure that pre exam jitters don't result in you staying up late, frantically reading, we found it best not to take our revision material with us to London. The night before you need to try your best to relax, safely in the knowledge that all the hard work that you've done will pay off.
round up your equipment
Now is the time to gather all the equipment you need for the exam. I won't repeat it all here, as its easily accessible on the RCGP website. Click here for the list. Also remember that you can not write in or on your equipment, but you can put in coloured sticky labels in the BNF to act as bookmarks. So pick a colour scheme that works for you, (such as blue for analgesia, green for antibiotics etc..) and stick them in your BNF. It will help save time should you need to access information from your BNF during the exam.
As for what to wear, I won't go into that here. Just remember to always remember to dress smart. Please see here for the official guidance on dress codes, produced by the MRCGP