Is it better to join at 16 or 18?

Terrafir

Crow
So I want to join, I'm currently 16. I obviously need my parents permission and so they are asking lots of questions that I need some answers t but cannot find the answers for anywhere online.
They want to know what the differences are between joining at 16 vs 18?
So far I know that the amount of time you spend in training is different, being under 18 you go to AFC Harrogate.
But I cannot really find much more than that, anytime I try and find more information online it is just arguments about whether or not 16 year olds should be allowed to join but that is not what I am looking for.
My parents want to know the details like how is rank progression different and how differently are they treated.

If anyone has any information about the differences or their personal experience with people of different ages in the army please let me know so I can convince my parents. I am really dedicated to proving to them that this is what I want to do.
 
As a 16 - 18 year old you cannot (in theory) be deployed on operational duties. As a junior soldier you will complete basic training (phase1) then progress into further training. You won’t join your regiment / corps until 17.5. Rank within juniors can be achieved quickly but is relinquished once you join your Unit. Junior soldiering has the advantage of being conducted in slow time, you’re not going anywhere for 2 years so there is time to get it right and be trained over a good period of time. You won’t be able to drink in that time (you’ll get away with it on leave, but don’t get caught or arrested!) Once you leave juniors there are many debates as to whether or not a junior soldier makes a better soldier, my experience, which was a long while ago now was, there wasn’t much difference. The big advantage is, you get to experience soldiering at 16, if it’s what you want, convince your parents.
 
I spent a couple of years training Junior Signalmen a long time ago. To this day it is the job in my working life that gave me the highest level of job satisfaction.

I am a firm believer in pursuing education to the highest level that makes sense for you, so, if you will not continue in school, ask your parents to consider what you will be doing between 16 and 18. Your choices are likely:

- school
- Apprenticeship
- Some “job” (could have potential)
- Unemployment

As a junior soldier you will experience military training, discipline, adventurous training, education and, later, trade training of some type. You will learn to look after yourself, your kit and your mates. You may experience things you have no chance of doing in your home town as a civilian*. By the time of your passing out parade, you will have gained confidence, a few inches of height (apparently), a bunch of potentially lifelong friends and a variety of skills. There is a high probability that your parents will not recognize you. You WILL have changed.

How does that stack up against your alternatives?

Mechanicalhorsetrough has given more up to date information on when you would move on to adult service. It was slightly different in my time.

*as an example, I and one of my troops of 16 year olds were tasked with being the rioters for some police training. It didn’t go all the police’s way. I got told off by my CO (who I am sure was trying hard not to laugh) but we had a great day.
 
My tuppence worth. If you want to to join at 16, then do that. 2 years education and get paid.
If you join at 18, then do that.
DON'T do what I did and go through basic training at 17 years and 9 1/2 months old. Though not a lot, you get less pay for the same bullshit!!! I passed out 4 days short of my 18th birthday.

SK
 
My tuppence worth. If you want to to join at 16, then do that. 2 years education and get paid.
If you join at 18, then do that.
DON'T do what I did and go through basic training at 17 years and 9 1/2 months old. Though not a lot, you get less pay for the same bullshit!!! I passed out 4 days short of my 18th birthday.

SK
Yeah, I was 18 and 2 weeks at the beginning of Phase 1, I could go to the NAAFI for a beer (not until week 8 though) whereas under 18’s were only allowed soft drinks and couldn’t go to the bar to get it, which was bloody hilarious to us 18+’s
 

S7015642F

Swinger
So I want to join, I'm currently 16. I obviously need my parents permission and so they are asking lots of questions that I need some answers t but cannot find the answers for anywhere online.
They want to know what the differences are between joining at 16 vs 18?
So far I know that the amount of time you spend in training is different, being under 18 you go to AFC Harrogate.
But I cannot really find much more than that, anytime I try and find more information online it is just arguments about whether or not 16 year olds should be allowed to join but that is not what I am looking for.
My parents want to know the details like how is rank progression different and how differently are they treated.

If anyone has any information about the differences or their personal experience with people of different ages in the army please let me know so I can convince my parents. I am really dedicated to proving to them that this is what I want to do.
You can sit down with your parents and watch on the my 5 app ‘raw recruits’ there are two episodes filmed at afc Harrogate and shows you their journey through basic training.


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
 

Hollz2412

Swinger
You can sit down with your parents and watch on the my 5 app ‘raw recruits’ there are two episodes filmed at afc Harrogate and shows you their journey through basic training.


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
In comparison to that there was a series a few years back called British army girls not sure what channel it was though. Doesn’t matter if you’re female or not it shows the process of phase 1 at pirbright that might be worth looking at so you can compare the 2. There’s also a paras one been done recently aswell but unsure of if there has been one at catterick but I’d assume catterick is very similar to the other 2 but obviously infantry based.
 
Not sure how it works now,I was a boy entrant,signed for 6 years......your time does not start until you are 18.
 

Hollz2412

Swinger
I know when my friend went through Harrogate 2 years ago once you pass training you sign til you’re 18th birthday then when you’re 18 you can choose whether to sign a 4 year contract or leave.
 

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