RAF Mildenhall

Cost of Living

Start saving 6-12 months before PCSing to the U.K.  It is a high cost of living area for the military, so you should prepare and start saving for the move months before you PCS. To help offset the higher price of non-housing goods and services, you will receive an Overseas Cost of Living Allowance (COLA). To find more information about COLA, visit the Defense Travel Management Office website. Remember that in securing rental housing at a new location, you may be required to pay advance rent (which can range from 900 pounds to 2,500 pounds) and also a security deposit, which is a major expense.

Personnel should also be prepared to defray added expenses not normally found in the states, i.e., television license (annual cost is approximately 160 pounds), vehicle Ministry of Transport (MoT)  roadworthy tests (approximately 60 pounds in addition to the cost to fix any problems identified to meet safety requirements); vehicle road tax (annual cost is approximately 280 pounds a year for imports, and up to 800 pounds a year for cars bought in the U.K.)  Research cost of road tax for a vehicle before you purchase it as this is based on age of the vehicle, fuel type and CO2 emissions.  More details on managing personal finances to assist with your move to the U.K. can be found in the ‘Financial Assistance’ section of Military and Family Readiness Center support.