What are the Non-Pay Benefits for the British Armed Forces?

British Armed Forces personnel receive a wide range of non-pay benefits including (AFPRB, 2018, p.16):

  • An annual leave allowance of 38 days per year (as they do not have a separate allowance for Bank Holiday);
  • Sea-goer’s leave;
  • Post operational leave allowance;
  • Relocation leave;
  • Rest and recuperation;
  • A resettlement package;
  • Childcare vouchers;
  • Medical and dental care;
  • Sporting facilities and adventure training;
  • Indulgence travel (for Service personnel and their immediate families);
  • Subsidised accommodation;
  • A fuel subsidy scheme; and
  • Discounted travel.

How Does this Compare with Civilian Non-pay Benefits?

In their last review (2007), the Armed Forces Pay Review Body (AFPRB) noted that, at the time, their analysis identified a wide range of civilian benefits including:

  • Company cars;
  • Annual leave;
  • Season ticket loans;
  • Subsidised mortgages;
  • Meals and lunch allowances;
  • Private medical insurance;
  • Employee share schemes;
  • Educational assistance;
  • Flexible working; and
  • Sports and social facilities.

In their latest analysis (2018), the AFPRB notes that civilian employers offer an even larger variety of benefits, often with a flexible or menu approach enabling employees to individualise their total reward package.

The AFPRB notes that some Ministry of Defence (MOD) benefits appear better than the civilian counterparts:

  • A larger annual leave allowance (although there is no separate allowance for Bank Holidays, and taking leave may be an issue);
  • The provision of medical and dental care; and
  • Subsidised accommodation and travel.

Comparing Civilian and Military Non-Pay Benefits

The AFPRB states that the changes in both military and civilian packages and their wide range of available benefits means an accurate assessment of the balance of advantage between the two is difficult.


AFPRB (Armed Forces’ Pay Review Body). (2018) Armed Forces’ Pay Review Body Forty-Seventh Report 2018. Available from World Wide Web: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/armed-forces-pay-review-body-forty-seventh-report-2018. [Accessed: 22 January, 2019].


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