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Moving Overseas

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Start Planning as Soon as You Can

It is important to start planning as early as possible for a move overseas, we have included a list of some of the extra arrangements and considerations which an overseas move brings with links to useful sites. It is important that you find the requirements for the country you are moving to so don't delay, make sure you get all the information from your new unit and that you know how any benefits may be affected. See our benefits section and the Department of work and pensions information for service families.

Consult your unit administrative staff for allowance details, or visit the service websites. If you are posted overseas you should receive detailed local information from the unit you are posted to. Contact them for HIVE details, accommodation, information etc. Many overseas locations publish information on the internet (try the lead service first).

The 10 Golden Rules

Follow the 10 Golden Rules On receiving your Posting Order or Authority to move:

1.Ensure that your unit has completed a MOD Form Mov 564 (FMOV 564). If you are travelling as a Family your unit must complete an application for a Family Passage - F/MOV/546. When completed the unit sends it to the Defence Passenger Reservation Centre (DPRC). You should receive a pack from DPRC giving you information on passport and visa requirements, health and vaccination issues. If you do not receive one of these packs, contact your movement’s clerk asap.

If you have specific questions ring DPRC on 0207 305 4800. Remember it is your responsibility to meet all the necessary arrangements for entry into a foreign country, the DPRC will only book flights or help with overland travel visas once these arrangements have been made.

2.You must then complete the application form, Form AF A10, for a new Service Quarter (see our Moving House section), which is sent to the new unit. Overseas commands manage their own Service quarters.

3.DPRC will have sent you a 'Certificate of Willingness to Travel' which must be completed and returned to them. Spouses/civil partners and children must have valid passports – these are supplied free when your spouse/civil partner is posted overseas. Non EEC partners should have their passports endorsed with a status stamp which shows that the holder of the passport is the dependent of a member of the British Forces. This can also be done by the DPRC.

It is also worth remembering that if you intend to travel into other countries you may need to meet other entry requirements for those countries - visit the Foreign and Commonwealth website or contact the Embassy of the country concerned if you have any specific problems.

4.Arrange insurance and make sure your financial matters are in order - you may wish to open a bank account overseas. You are advised to keep a bank account in use in the UK to pay existing debits or receive DSS benefits. This will also help with credit checks on return to the UK.

It is important that you have medical insurance whilst travelling abroad or if you are planning on taking holidays whilst overseas. The MOD will supply free medical treatment at your posting location but you will not be covered for travelling elsewhere. If in doubt check what you are covered for. You should get a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) that gives access to state-provided medical treatment in EEA countries and Switzerland for all your family. For more information view the Department of Health – Advice for travellers website.

5.You will receive a copy of the Baggage Guide F/MOV/713 from your unit telling you how to move your belongings and what you are entitled to store in the UK at public expense if you wish to do so. You should make sure your belongings are insured while in transit or storage.

6.Prepare for the handover of your quarters if you are living in one and notify the provider of your leaving date so you can arrange the handover itself - check with your HIVE for any cleaning schemes

7.If you are thinking of taking your Pets abroad check DEFRA. They have information on the Pet Passport Scheme as well as which animals may not be taken into certain countries. Remember to consider how you are going to transport any pets or plants you are taking with you.

8.Check that all medical and school documents are in order. If any family member has special health needs you will need to take action to make sure their health needs can be fully met at your next location, visit our healthcare pages for more information and speak to your unit personnel staff.

9.If you have children of school age contact the Children’s Education Advisory Service (CEAS) for information on schools in their area. The HIVE will also be able to give you information on activities for pre-school children and the availability of childcare facilities. CEAS can be contacted on 01980 618244.

10.Make sure DPRC know where you are staying if you leave your quarter before going overseas.

Vehicle Information

If you are using a car abroad, visit the DVLA website to see what the regulations are in the country you are moving to - you may have to make arrangements for new Insurance, pay road taxes and have roadworthiness tests very quickly after entering the country so it is worth preparing in advance.

Also if you are thinking of buying a vehicle whilst working overseas check the regulations for importing it back to the mainland at the end of the tour - there are several do's and don'ts. In Germany the Garrison Customs and Immigration Advisors will be able to give you further information and the relevant paperwork. Their address is:

Customs and Immigration
British Forces Liaison
Germany, BFPO40.

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