Armed Forces Allowances

Armed Forces Allowances


There are various allowances that Service Personnel may become eligible for in certain circumstances or at different qualifying points in their career, such as a new Assignment. Advice can be taken from your family member’s Unit Personnel Office (UPO) and up to date information can also be found via JSP 752. 

Discover My Benefits (DMB)

Discover My Benefits is an easy-to-use tool for those working in Defence, their families and anyone interested in joining. You can use it to find out what support and benefits are available to you as a Service person or civil servant.  

MOD guide to expenses and allowance 

Front cover of the MOD Guide to Expenses and Allowances.The MOD produced a guide to expenses and allowances for Serving personnel and the support families could receive. This booklet holds a wealth of information to help both regular and reserve members of all three Services to better understand some of the most common expenses, allowances and other provisions that are available. 


*Please note that this publication is not exhaustive but seeks to highlight some common expenses, allowances and provisions which personnel may encounter. Always refer to JSP 752 as it is the authoritative publication.* 

Examples of your entitlement/allowances 

The below are some of the examples your serving person may be entitled to, which must be claimed for and assessed for eligibility by the UPO rather than paid automatically. For the full list of allowances/expenses, latest pay rates and to check your eligibility, please visit the above link to access JSP 752. 

  • Lodging Allowance: To enable Service personnel in the UK to rent accommodation and meet associated necessary costs when single public accommodation and Substitute Single Service Accommodation (SSSA). 


  • Council Tax Relief: To provide financial support through a relief payment system for Service personnel on specified operations or assignments. 
  • Ex-Gratia Payments in lieu of Maternity Allowance: To pay the equivalent of Maternity Allowance to Service personnel whose spouses/civil partner accompany them overseas to countries where there is no reciprocal maternity arrangement and would have otherwise been entitled to receive the Maternity Allowance had they remained in the UK. 


  • Local Overseas Allowance (LOA): To contribute towards the necessary additional cost of day-to-day living when Service personnel are assigned or deployed overseas at public expense. It recognises the amount by which average essential day-to-day expenditure in an overseas location differs from that in the UK. 


  • Overseas Rent Allowance: To reimburse Service personnel with the necessary cost of rent and utilities for rented accommodation when they are assigned overseas and no suitable Service accommodation is available. 


  • Overseas Furniture Provision Scheme: To provide furniture and furnishings for Service personnel who are necessarily living overseas in unfurnished publicly-rented accommodation or foreign government quarters. 


The overseas assignments section on our website holds a wealth of information, do take a look 

  • Continuity of Education Allowance (CEA): To assist Service personnel to achieve continuity of education for their children that would otherwise be denied in the state-maintained day school sector due to the mobility of their family because of consecutive assignments. 


  • Wraparound Childcare (WAC): The WAC scheme is to help eligible Service families with children aged 4 to 11 years, who are in school or being home schooled in the UK. Eligible families can claim up to 20 hours per week of funding for each child that is attending before and after school care during term time. Please note that this is not included in JSP 752. For further information, visit our childcare page. 
  • Disturbance Expenses: to contribute towards the necessary additional expenses that may arise when the Services require their personnel to make a qualifying move to or from a residence at work address (RWA) on permanent assignment. 


  • Movement and Storage of Personal Effects: To enable Service personnel and accompanying members of immediate family to move and/or store their Personal Effects at public expense, within entitlement, when assigned to a new qualifying duty station. 

Longer Separation Allowance (LSA): To support and improve retention by compensating those personnel experiencing separation over and above that compensated for by the X-Factor element within basic pay. As a general principle, it is paid at increasing amounts in order to target those who experience the most separation throughout their service. Payment of the allowance recognises the disadvantages of separation caused when return to the duty station at weekends/standdown is precluded by either the nature or location of the duty. It also provides some support for those who are voluntarily separated from their immediate family. 

  • Get You Home Travel: To reduce the impact of separation on Service personnel to improve retention whilst also supporting the mobile nature of the Services. It achieves this by contributing towards the cost of travel from the Duty Station to a Qualifying Residence (QRes) when both are within the same country, and the SP carries out such travel. 


  • Get You Home (Seagoers): To support and improve retention by reducing the impact of separation on seagoing personnel. It achieves this by assisting Service personnel, who have the opportunity to return to their qualifying address from a UK port, with the costs of their travel within the UK. 


  • Home to Duty: To provide a contribution towards the costs incurred when eligible Service personnel travel daily between their Residence at Work Address (RWA) and their place of duty. 


  • Railcards: All personnel are entitled to apply for an HM Forces Railcard at a discounted rate (£21 p/a as of October 2022). The card saves 1/3 of the cost of most rail fares in the UK and is valid for a year. Spouses and dependent children are also eligible for a card. Please note that expenses for a duty or GYH journey can’t be claimed for if that journey is undertaken using an HM Forces Railcard. Further information/to apply, visit your UPO.