AFF has been gathering your evidence about the specific cost of living challenges you’re facing due to the nature of service life.

For families living in Service Family Accommodation, poor insulation or old and inefficient boilers can increase energy bills. Those living in oil-fired quarters have seen significant upfront costs and those of you on the MOD fuel and light scheme have lacked information which would enable you to budget. Some of you have raised issues about being unable to transfer utility contracts on moving, with others feeling unable to access fixed-term contracts because of the likelihood of moving home.

Adverse impact

Families living in their own homes have highlighted how the increase in fuel costs has meant the service person is not able to come home as regularly, which can have an adverse impact on relationships and wellbeing.

Like civilians, many of you have difficulty accessing NHS dental care, but this has a unique impact for dual serving couples, as many dentists will only accept children under NHS care if the parent registers as a private patient – not an option for service personnel.

Single serving parents have to rely on paid childcare to be able to work, particularly as they may not live near wider family for support, and this can take up a significant chunk of their salary. Whilst the new MOD wraparound childcare scheme can help with before and after-school care for those with children aged 4-11, it doesn’t support early years or school holiday costs.

Representing you

So, what has AFF been doing about this? We’ve raised the issues with the army, MOD and the wider charity sector, discussing them with the General responsible for people support and speaking to divisional headquarters.

We’ve emphasised the importance of ensuring that you can access the information you need to be supported with these challenges. Please check out the helpful page our money & allowances team has put together at There are links to discover whether you’re eligible for any MOD allowances or benefits, information about flexible working, flexible service or parental leave which may help with childcare costs, as well as The Royal British Legion’s cost of living grants. If you need support, please reach out to your chain of command, welfare team or visit our cost of living page – there should be no stigma in asking for help or claiming any benefits you’re entitled to. If you’re experiencing issues due to army life, let us know

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