Pte pay and a family

#1
Hello,

This is my first post and although I did attempt to search around, I failed in my attempt to find posts relevant to my question. If I did somehow miss a pertinent thread I do apologize.

I am from Canada, 28, with a wife and two children. After a bit of soul searching between the Royal Marines and the Army I decided to follow my original dream of getting on with the Yorkshire Regiment and have commenced the application process overseas. I should be coming over for selection at the start of August.

I have prepared well and am not worried about any aspect of the process or even the separation from my family. The only thing that really concerns me is entry level pay when having a family.

I'll be honest, I am a little in the dark about the cost of living in the UK and although I understand family service housing procedures and even costs I am curious how others in a similar situation have been able to cope? Is it feasible for someone in my situation to adequately support a family given the pay level of a Private in the British Army? I suppose one has to account for the Child Benefit and other tax incentives, which I also understand.

I just want to be sure. Although this is a serious dream of mine and I would be heartbroken to not be able to follow through, I think anybody with a realistic overview and good commonsense will admit that supporting our family far outweighs any sense of personally satisfaction that we might seek to achieve. My children are important to me and I would never want to put them or my wife in an unmanageable situation. I am just looking for some serious input guys. I appreciate anything you guys can offer.
 
#2
Hi

I am in Canada and ex brit army REME and right now I would think your better choice would be to stay in this country and join the army here. The way the guys in Britain are being treated are terrible and any married quarters you are getting are not going to be the same as here. Overall our standard of living in Canada is better so it may be a culture shock going over there. I am from Yorkshire and I would not go back there to join the "falling plates" Green Howards or PWO. I would rather have a sister in a whorehouse than join the marines. If you are going to all that effort to go over there at least join the para regt.

Just my two pennies.
 
#3
paralog said:
Hi

I am in Canada and ex brit army REME and right now I would think your better choice would be to stay in this country and join the army here. The way the guys in Britain are being treated are terrible and any married quarters you are getting are not going to be the same as here. Overall our standard of living in Canada is better so it may be a culture shock going over there. I am from Yorkshire and I would not go back there to join the "falling plates" Green Howards or PWO. I would rather have a sister in a whorehouse than join the marines. If you are going to all that effort to go over there at least join the para regt.

Just my two pennies.
Just a few inaccuracies.

Green Howards disappeared in 2006, same as the PWO. Take it you are meaning the 1st Bn Yorkshire Regt these days?

Green Jackets, not Howards were the "falling plates" relating back to a particularly hard tour in NI a long time ago. The Green Howards were known as the Frankies or by some, the Dingles.

I agree completely with the "sister in a whorehouse" bit about the Marines but I am just prejudiced :D

Knowing a couple of bods who have gone the other way and are now settled in Canada, can't argue with the standard of living bit.

As to being able to survive - plenty do but I don't think it is easy. If you are used to having a reasonable amount of disposable income, unless the missus goes out to work, it won't happen on a Ptes wage.


Is there no opportunity for a career with the CA forces?

What is the driver for coming across this side of the pond?
 
#4
The cost of living in the UK is generally higher (standby for the cost of petrol - approaching £1.25 per litre, but cigs and booze are generally cheaper) and you may actually be on some sort of income support with having 2 kids. There are of course negatives with any choice but if it's what you want to do go for it. I spent a couple of glorious years in Canada but as my experience wasn't representative as I wasn't living in the local community, but how can you give up the Rockies?

In my opinion there's nothing wrong with the Royal Marines, I also spent 2 years serving with them and I respect their ethos and I've always enjoyed working with them.

I you join the infantry you will go to Afghanistan on a regular basis, the £5K op allowance plus LSA will help financially but your family needs to be prepared for the separation early-on in your career. The Regimental family will look after them but it will be a challenge. Also if your kids are under 6 they'll start primary School at 5, a year earlier than in Canada - your wife may find it difficult to get work initially you should investigate this however, if she's fluent in French that may help with some European focused businesses as typically the Brits are crap at other languages.

Good luck.

PS Tim Hortons is starting to get a hold in some areas over here so you'll be able to get your fix.
 
#5
I'm assuming that you'll be leaving your family in Canada while your in training. Your pay will be 13.644 as a new entrant. Giving yourself a modest allowance, to keep yourself in Kiwi and starch, you should be able to send some back to keep things going at home. Your pay will rise to 17,014 once training is complete as a level one, lower range Pte. Assuming you are not hopelessly in debt, and if you are willing to do without a car for a while, you should be able to keep yourselves afloat. If, as you say, this is your dream you are going to have to make some compromises.
 
#7
paralog said:
Hi

I am in Canada and ex brit army REME and right now I would think your better choice would be to stay in this country and join the army here. The way the guys in Britain are being treated are terrible and any married quarters you are getting are not going to be the same as here. Overall our standard of living in Canada is better so it may be a culture shock going over there. I am from Yorkshire and I would not go back there to join the "falling plates" Green Howards or PWO. I would rather have a sister in a whorehouse than join the marines. If you are going to all that effort to go over there at least join the para regt.

Just my two pennies.
Why didnt you go para reg then? Putting a spanner down and going all arms then picking your spanner up again doesnt really make you a paratrooper does it?
 
#10
In all honesty, I do not think I could ever encourage someone who is already married with kids to join the British Army. The only exception might be someone who lived in one of the poorer nations of the commonwealth.

You would be seriously compromising your wife and children's standard of living and depriving your kids of their father for significant stretches of time.

The pay isnt good, quarters are shoite (generalisation I know, some are good but average standards are still poor) and you will do regular tours of hot, dusty places from which there is a reasonable chance you will come back "changed" and a small but real chance that you will not come back at all.

Being a junior soldier is, and always has been, a young, single man's sport.
 
#11
I'm in the navy and have experienced army camps and marine camps. And the people in both.
In all honesty i would consider the marines again. If you are fit enough to pass the course i would say then go for it.
There seems to be less people who have an over inflated view of themselves and the entire attitude the marines have is more positive than that of the army. Also any 'pongos' i know who have worked with royal will back this up and many try to spend there career with them if they can.
I don't want this to turn in to a slanging match as i have many 'pongo' friends and im not one for just slanging off the army for the sake of it.
Also there is a saying i have heard many times to do with accom, scran etc. If there is a line the RAF will be above it, the navy will be on it (this includes RM), and the army will be the seen off blokes below it.
As for the person who said join the paras why? There seemed to be far to many without there wings this week when i was on a certain army camp. What the point in joining the paras if you don't do your jumps. They were prepping for H13 so im guessing there not going to fit it in before then either.
 
#12
danny842003 said:
I'm in the navy and have experienced army camps and marine camps. And the people in both.
In all honesty i would consider the marines again. If you are fit enough to pass the course i would say then go for it.
There seems to be less people who have an over inflated view of themselves and the entire attitude the marines have is more positive than that of the army. Also any 'pongos' i know who have worked with royal will back this up and many try to spend there career with them if they can.
I don't want this to turn in to a slanging match as i have many 'pongo' friends and im not one for just slanging off the army for the sake of it.
Also there is a saying i have heard many times to do with accom, scran etc. If there is a line the RAF will be above it, the navy will be on it (this includes RM), and the army will be the seen off blokes below it.
As for the person who said join the paras why? There seemed to be far to many without there wings this week when i was on a certain army camp. What the point in joining the paras if you don't do your jumps. They were prepping for H13 so im guessing there not going to fit it in before then either.
Why do they need to complete BPC before deployment? It is a f*cking method of entry not a be all and end all requirement to soldier.

Perce always try to stay on with Royal purely because they by and large arent f*cked about from pillar to post like they are normally used to

But you are a f*cking matelow c*nt so your opinion is invalid :D
 
#13
Juan_Ramirez_III said:
Why do they need to complete BPC before deployment? It is a f*cking method of entry not a be all and end all requirement to soldier.

Perce always try to stay on with Royal purely because they by and large arent f*cked about from pillar to post like they are normally used to

But you are a f*cking matelow c*nt so your opinion is invalid :D
Why would you want to be a Para and not have doen your jumps. My opinion might not count but it should be done before you pass out suerly. How can you be a para if you have never jumped?

And thats my point about not being fucked about. Which is why he should look again at royal.
 
#14
danny842003 said:
Juan_Ramirez_III said:
Why do they need to complete BPC before deployment? It is a f*cking method of entry not a be all and end all requirement to soldier.

Perce always try to stay on with Royal purely because they by and large arent f*cked about from pillar to post like they are normally used to

But you are a f*cking matelow c*nt so your opinion is invalid :D
Why would you want to be a Para and not have doen your jumps. My opinion might not count but it should be done before you pass out suerly. How can you be a para if you have never jumped?

And thats my point about not being fucked about. Which is why he should look again at royal.
They arent 'never going to jump', its just not a conveyor belt system anymore if I am rightly informed, in an ideal world it would be part of basic but so f*ck? They finish training ready to get stuck in, at least on paper.

I didnt hang round boats too much or do an awful lot in the oggin, from an amphibious point of view I spent more time swimming in my own spew.
 
#15
Why arent you trying joining your own Army, surely the benefits far outway the disadvantages. Not knocking you for wanting to Join the Britsh Army, just seems that you will be putting yourself under a lot of unreasonable strain by coming over here, family over there etc etc.
 
#16
Your dream of Joining The Yorkshire Regt. Did this dream start in 2006 ish?
 
#17
Gentlemen,

Thank you for your replies and insight. Although the Canadian Forces in a option, it is not for me. My motivation for my move to the UK is two fold: firstly, my heritage and a desire of both my wife to integrate into and become a part of British society so we can raise our children in the UK. Secondly, a desire to follow in my Grandfather's footsteps and serve her Majesty in the British Army. It is the career I have always wanted, and finally, one which I have found the resolve to pursue.

For many years I have found myself much more sympathetic to the UK and her interests and have felt increasingly less Canadian as a result. I do not think it would be right to serve the interests of a nation which, although my own by birth, I have a complete disinterest in. Leaving a job I hate now for an organization (the Canadian Forces) which I have no interest in becoming a part of- no matter how fine a record they may have both at home and internationally- would be equally disconcerting. No offense intended in the least to the Canadian Forces mind you. They are fantastic men and women, the CF is just not for me.

Financially I am torn. In Canada I live in an area with one of the highest costs of living in the world. Although under qualified, I have found myself in a well paying job which, perhaps ironically, fails to translate into the quality of life it presents outwardly. I work absurd hours and as a reward we live paycheck to paycheck, sometimes in the red, our lifestyle never quite affording us the comfort and success my position and our home outwardly suggests. In truth, when I really crunch the numbers it appears that we might actually be better off with less money in the UK than with more here. That is when you take into account the low cost of family service housing and tax incentives like the Child Bonus. I think we would have more money free of bills for the family and this, compounded with the profit I would make from the sale of our home might actually put us in a good situation once in Briton. All this of course is only further supplemented by the idea of working at a job which I believe would truly give me the sense of satisfaction and wholeness which I have lacked for a great many years. And yet I have doubts for reasons I am not quite sure why.

I realize that my career the the Army will take me from home, as does my wife. I would hope nobody would be so naive entering the armed forces in this day and age thinking anything but. Separation is not the issue, only whether supporting a family on the salary of a private. From what I have read, although perhaps a challenge, it is quite possible and this boys my spirit. I do appreciate the concern for my family due to my separation and the risks which in turn associated; however, those risks are incidental to me when measured against my goal of coming to the UK and contributing to her interests abroad..

One questions though:

Obviously deployments are a reality. And some have pointed out the high frequency in which they occur. Although I would not say I have excited to deploy, I do have a great interest in making a contribution to this global struggle. I was curious, assuming I am with a normal infantry battalion, how often I should expect to deploy to Afghanistan or wherever?

Thank you again. Anything else people can offer is always appreciated.
 
#18
The programmed cycle is one tour of 6 months duration every 2.5 years, although it could be a bit longer depending on how the FORM cycle develops and indeed what happens with the Defence review. Within that tour there is normally a 2 week RnR period. Many of the preparatory trg serials also keep you away from home ie the BATUS exercise (Suffiled near Medicine Hat) typically lasts for 6 weeks.
 
#19
Agree, one tour every two years or so is currently the norm for the Infantry (and other parts of the Army before anyone gets precious - and yes there are other parts which have a shorter tour interval!).

I think, from your last post, that you have thought this through and I think that there is nothing to stop you - if you join - getting on the promotion ladder pretty quickly if you are fit and motivated. Good luck with joining.

whf
 
#20
Can anyone confirm for me that the take home base pay of a trained PTE is a little over 1000 pounds a month? That is the indication I have gotten from most- somewhere in the relm of 1069.00- however, I wanted to get some further feedback on that number.
 
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