SKX0091
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I want to apply to the RAF as either a Mover, or as a second option Police. The only thing holding me back from applying is the "12 year commitment", i want to join but i dont know if id want to serve 12 years, i dont want to sign up for 12 years, then turn up and after a year or 2 think "this isnt for me" but be stuck doing it for the next 12 years, by which time when i leave id be too old to start a new career.

4 years, like in the Army or Navy is much more practical to get my head around, 4 years isnt that long, its long enough for me to decide whether its for me or not, if it is, great, i will sign up for more years, if its not, fine, 4 years isnt that long until i get to leave and do something different. "why not join the army or navy then", well, i feel i would be best suited to the RAF, ive heard bad things about the Army, you know, getting treated bad and stuff, ive heard the phrase "cannon fodder" said to me a few times, and i know people wh have hated it, the Navy, i have actually applied for previously, they have offered me a few roles, the only one id consider is Aircraft Handler, i just dont know if the Navy would be for me, i like the idea of travelling and seeing the world, who doesnt? But i also recognise it wont be like being on a cruise, i will be working, and stuck on a ship working most of the time.

I guess what im wondering most is, is the 12 years mandatory, if i turn up and after a year or 2 think "this isnt for me" can i get out? whats the process and how long does it take? or will i most likely be made to serve out my 12 years? Im just wondering if i apply, get in, then sign up to the 12 years, but realise i dont like it, or i dont want to do the 12 years, after a year or 2 i want to leave, can i? can i just request t leave and leave? how does it work? Can the RAF refuse my request and force me to work the full 12 years? any information on this would be much appreciated.
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Sammylou40
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#2
Report 2 years ago
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It is possible to "buy yourself out"
The terms depend on length of contract, time served, training received, skill set etc
You cannot do it whilst on a tour and although you can request it, it's not guaranteed to be accepted
It's expensive.
You can't expect to join up, get fully trained and then bail out. That's not fair on the personnel you serve with or the money they e spent on you
Better to think hard about wether you should sign up at all. If you do, it would be a big mistake to ask at recruitment how this works.
Either you're committed or not. People's lives depend on your commitment
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TechieChris
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#3
Report 2 years ago
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Having served 12 years in the RAF and still being in now, I can shed some light on your question SKX.

Firstly, the above post is duff gen... 'buying yourself out' disappeared a long time ago. The RAF nowadays is a job, like any other job... you have a contract, but this can cease with the correct period of notice.

When I joined, it was a 9 year contracted term, recently this changed to 12 years.

You can leave on Day 1 of basic training before you attest your service to the Queen and the Country if you really don't want to be there. Later in your career, you can apply to PVR (Premature Voluntary Retirement), this is essentially handing in your notice, the notice period currently is 12 months, but this can vary dependant on many factors. For example, if you have a secure job offer on civvie street, they can reduce the time in order for you to leave, but if you have detachment dates, you would have to fulfil that requirement (you can't PVR to escape a detachment).

Sometimes, the RAF imposes a return of service after training courses. When I attended Cosford for my Technician training, it was the best part of 2 years in training, at a significant cost to the RAF and I left with a decent civilian qualification, therefore I had to return 3 years of service (this means I couldn't PVR within that time). Is stops people 'using' the RAF to pay for their qualifications with the intention of leaving once they are qualified.

So in short, no, you are not forced to complete the 12 years.

What I would say though, if you're not committed, don't bother, the RAF will invest a lot into you, and if you're not committed, you're just going to find it a ball ache going through training and your career.

But I will add, the RAF is a fantastic career, you will constantly have opportunities thrown your way, be that through sport, education or travelling. I have thoroughly enjoyed the last 12 years, so much so, I'm now on a 22 year contract, and finger crossed that will increase. The opportunities are amazing, and the things I've seen and done, my peers back in my home town can only dream of. If you're committed, the RAF is a great career path. But on the other hand, it's not for everyone, the choice has to be yours...

If you want to speak to me about anything else RAF related, ping me a message and I'll help where I can.

Best of luck if you do apply!
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Sammylou40
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#4
Report 2 years ago
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(Original post by TechieChris)
Having served 12 years in the RAF and still being in now, I can shed some light on your question SKX.

Firstly, the above post is duff gen... 'buying yourself out' disappeared a long time ago. The RAF nowadays is a job, like any other job... you have a contract, but this can cease with the correct period of notice.

When I joined, it was a 9 year contracted term, recently this changed to 12 years.

You can leave on Day 1 of basic training before you attest your service to the Queen and the Country if you really don't want to be there. Later in your career, you can apply to PVR (Premature Voluntary Retirement), this is essentially handing in your notice, the notice period currently is 12 months, but this can vary dependant on many factors. For example, if you have a secure job offer on civvie street, they can reduce the time in order for you to leave, but if you have detachment dates, you would have to fulfil that requirement (you can't PVR to escape a detachment).

Sometimes, the RAF imposes a return of service after training courses. When I attended Cosford for my Technician training, it was the best part of 2 years in training, at a significant cost to the RAF and I left with a decent civilian qualification, therefore I had to return 3 years of service (this means I couldn't PVR within that time). Is stops people 'using' the RAF to pay for their qualifications with the intention of leaving once they are qualified.

So in short, no, you are not forced to complete the 12 years.

What I would say though, if you're not committed, don't bother, the RAF will invest a lot into you, and if you're not committed, you're just going to find it a ball ache going through training and your career.

But I will add, the RAF is a fantastic career, you will constantly have opportunities thrown your way, be that through sport, education or travelling. I have thoroughly enjoyed the last 12 years, so much so, I'm now on a 22 year contract, and finger crossed that will increase. The opportunities are amazing, and the things I've seen and done, my peers back in my home town can only dream of. If you're committed, the RAF is a great career path. But on the other hand, it's not for everyone, the choice has to be yours...

If you want to speak to me about anything else RAF related, ping me a message and I'll help where I can.

Best of luck if you do apply!
Thanks for clearing that up.
Based on personal experience
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TechieChris
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#5
Report 2 years ago
#5
(Original post by Sammylou40)
Thanks for clearing that up.
Based on personal experience
No dramas.

What's based on personal experience? My post or that you've gone through the process of buying yourself out? #confused
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Sammylou40
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#6
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#6
(Original post by TechieChris)
No dramas.

What's based on personal experience? My post or that you've gone through the process of buying yourself out? #confused
No. Buying out
Boyfriend did
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TechieChris
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#7
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#7
(Original post by Sammylou40)
No. Buying out
Boyfriend did
He served during WWII then I guess?? Buying out hasn't been a thing for a very long time!
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Sammylou40
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#8
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(Original post by TechieChris)
He served during WWII then I guess?? Buying out hasn't been a thing for a very long time!
Not quite!!!!
It was a few years ago!
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NFI
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#9
Report 2 years ago
#9
(Original post by Sammylou40)
Not quite!!!!
It was a few years ago!
How long ago? I haven't heard of anyone having to buy themselves out this side of the 21st century. Had he signed for a financial retention incentive?
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Sammylou40
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#10
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(Original post by NFI)
How long ago? I haven't heard of anyone having to buy themselves out this side of the 21st century. Had he signed for a financial retention incentive?
Don't know. And can't stand the bloke so can't ask for details
He did 6 weeks basic and three months trade training then bailed out. That's as much as I know really
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NFI
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#11
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I think he was telling you porkies. Basic training lasts longer than 6 weeks!
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TheMaid
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#12
Report 1 year ago
#12
(Original post by SKX0091)
I want to apply to the RAF as either a Mover, or as a second option Police. The only thing holding me back from applying is the "12 year commitment", i want to join but i dont know if id want to serve 12 years, i dont want to sign up for 12 years, then turn up and after a year or 2 think "this isnt for me" but be stuck doing it for the next 12 years, by which time when i leave id be too old to start a new career.

4 years, like in the Army or Navy is much more practical to get my head around, 4 years isnt that long, its long enough for me to decide whether its for me or not, if it is, great, i will sign up for more years, if its not, fine, 4 years isnt that long until i get to leave and do something different. "why not join the army or navy then", well, i feel i would be best suited to the RAF, ive heard bad things about the Army, you know, getting treated bad and stuff, ive heard the phrase "cannon fodder" said to me a few times, and i know people wh have hated it, the Navy, i have actually applied for previously, they have offered me a few roles, the only one id consider is Aircraft Handler, i just dont know if the Navy would be for me, i like the idea of travelling and seeing the world, who doesnt? But i also recognise it wont be like being on a cruise, i will be working, and stuck on a ship working most of the time.

I guess what im wondering most is, is the 12 years mandatory, if i turn up and after a year or 2 think "this isnt for me" can i get out? whats the process and how long does it take? or will i most likely be made to serve out my 12 years? Im just wondering if i apply, get in, then sign up to the 12 years, but realise i dont like it, or i dont want to do the 12 years, after a year or 2 i want to leave, can i? can i just request t leave and leave? how does it work? Can the RAF refuse my request and force me to work the full 12 years? any information on this would be much appreciated.
when you first join it’s 9years and you can choose to extend to 12 years I did 12 it was the best thing I did joining up but I would be a mover or a copper the technical trades are far better plus better paid
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TheMaid
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#13
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(Original post by TheMaid)
when you first join it’s 9years and you can choose to extend to 12 years I did 12 it was the best thing I did joining up but I would be a mover or a copper the technicaltrades are far better plus better paid
also you can apply to get out at any time it’s called A PVR
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JimboFB
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#14
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Having literally just graduated from basic training last week I can confirm that minimum service is 12 years with 6 years reserve service. You can VW (voluntarily withdraw) on day 00 before attestation, or after that ‘officially’ no earlier than day 28 (although some people in my intake got special dispensation to go earlier). I think after that it’s trade specific so as a musician I have to do 4 years before I can leave. 3yrs+1yrs notice. Other trades might be different but there’s def NO buying out!
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TheMaid
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#15
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What's based on personal experience? Mate I did 12 years myself it goes by so fast you don’t notice itand was the best time of my life but if your struggling with the idea of 12years it’s not for you but I would also advise thinking of a better trade than mover or police these so many more maybe go for a commission as an officer
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JimboFB
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#16
Report 1 year ago
#16
(Original post by TheMaid)
What's based on personal experience? Mate I did 12 years myself it goes by so fast you don’t notice itand was the best time of my life but if your struggling with the idea of 12years it’s not for you but I would also advise thinking of a better trade than mover or police these so many more maybe go for a commission as an officer
Police is really tough to get into. They don't recruit very often. I had people on my intake that were initially going for police but between initial application and starting Basic Training theyd stopped taking new recruits. These people then had to change trades to something they didn't want to do. 1 lad VW'd after a week because of this. Total waste of time for everyone. Just be 100% sure of the trade you want to do as its a lot of aggro to get halfway thorugh basic and drop out.
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dizzylucy
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#17
Report 1 year ago
#17
Hi, hope you don't mind me asking out of curiosity but if someone worked in logistics and joined the RAF in about 2013/2014 how many years service would they have had to sign up to do, would it have been 12 years even then ? Thanks for any help.
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username3895228
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#18
Report 1 year ago
#18
(Original post by dizzylucy)
Hi, hope you don't mind me asking out of curiosity but if someone worked in logistics and joined the RAF in about 2013/2014 how many years service would they have had to sign up to do, would it have been 12 years even then ? Thanks for any help.
Lucy, the change of initial service length came in in the latter part of 2016 I think, so if someone joined in 13/14, they'd have been on a 9 year contract, people were offered to extend to 12 years if they wanted to when the initial service length was changed to 12 years as standard.

Regards,

Chris
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dizzylucy
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#19
Report 1 year ago
#19
(Original post by CL46)
Lucy, the change of initial service length came in in the latter part of 2016 I think, so if someone joined in 13/14, they'd have been on a 9 year contract, people were offered to extend to 12 years if they wanted to when the initial service length was changed to 12 years as standard.

Regards,

Chris
Thank you so much Chris, that's really helpful, thanks for your help.

Lucy
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a_kitt_kat
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#20
Report 1 year ago
#20
As far as trade is concerned, I wanna be police in RAF, so should I look at other trades anyway or would you advice the other forces? Thankyou Also, Any advice for basic training?
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