Germany rebasing FAQs

Please check our COVID-19 section for up-to-date information, as the coronavirus outbreak may affect the advice given on this page.


01   Getting your family back to the UK

Documentation/UK entry requirements

Everyone travelling must have a valid passport with at least six months remaining to present at both exit and entry airports/ports.

Ensure that you have the correct documentation required for travel, not only for entry into the UK but also for transiting countries en-route to your final destination. Please seek advice from your UWO.

Visa requirements for non-EEA citizens

To travel over land from Germany to the UK, you will require one of the following to travel through the Schengen states:

  • An in-date Schengen visa
  • A Declaratory Residence Permit
  • A passport that permits travel – e.g. USA has a reciprocal agreement with these nations which allows US citizens to enter as visitors

Any fee involved in obtaining the most relevant document is your responsibility. For more information visit the Foreign & Commonwealth section.

Other ways to travel

If travelling by private transport, you are entitled to a commercial sea crossing (ferry or Eurotunnel) at public expense. HQ Germany has secured discounted fares and offers from some commercial ferry operators.

Submit your booking requirement to Unit Admin staff no later than six weeks prior to your move date.

What can you transport by commercial ferry?

  • Married accompanied – up to two vehicles at public expense
  • Single/married unaccompanied – one vehicle at public expense

Towed vehicles or platforms – including trailers, boats and caravans – cannot be moved at public expense. To transport these items with prime movers, inform Unit Booking at the time of requesting your initial booking.

Once you have your booking reference, contact the commercial ferry operator and make a private payment for the movement of your towed vehicle.

Moving your pets

To transport pets by land or sea, inform Unit Admin staff when you book. Any additional associated cost is a private arrangement between you and the commercial ferry operator and must be paid before you travel.

Each pet must have a ‘Pet Passport’ available for presentation at the port of exit/entry with the relevant in-date inoculations recorded.

Prohibited items  

Items classed as either Dangerous Goods or Prohibited Items must not be packed for travel. Gas canisters cannot be taken in your removals or on Eurotunnel crossings. You can get more information from commercial operator websites or Unit Admin staff.

Sporting weapons, weapon systems or bladed articles

To transport a sporting weapon, authorised weapon system or bladed article, ensure that you have the relevant documentation and security precautions in place prior to travel. This is your responsibility and you can get guidance from commercial operators.

Further information

For advice on any of the above, first approach your unit admin/welfare office or visit the relevant commercial operator websites. They will provide a wealth of information to help you with your move.

For further guidance regarding rebasing, contact AFF at

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02   Registering and insuring your vehicle before returning to the UK

There is a big difference between German insurance and UK cover. If you are currently insured with a German firm, you may want to make the switch now – while still in Germany – to a UK insurer; the best time to do this is when your current policy falls due for renewal.

Why switch now?

Foreign No Claims discount (NCD) – even that earned with a familiar name in Germany – is frequently unacceptable to UK insurance companies.

By making the switch now, you will have a policy that honours any NCD you have earned in Germany and so your eventual move back to the UK will then just be treated as a simple change of address. One less task to worry about as you land back in the UK!

The UK insurers that operate in Germany have made arrangements that are fully acceptable to the Vehicle Licencing Office (VLO), and their brokers are members of The Services Insurance & Investment Advisory Panel (SIIAP) which means that any special requirements due to your association with the Armed Forces will be taken into account.

What about my NCD?

They may also be able to provide some special solutions regarding your NCD e.g. Driving Experience Discount, which works in much the same way as NCD but rewards the policyholder when a conventional NCD cannot be used.

The refusal by British firms to accept foreign NCD is quite widespread.

If you do decide to wait until you get back to the UK, you need to check with the new insurer that they will accept your NCD.

Most online insurers (including ‘price comparison’ sites) won’t allow it. They may request you to pay their full price without allowing any discount whatsoever – which could be a hefty additional sum if you were expecting a 60% discount.

Want to know more?

For more information regarding insuring your vehicle before moving to the UK, or any other aspect of rebasing, please contact AFF’s Regional Manager, Germany at

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03   BFGnet

The BFGnet Rebasing webpage contains newsletters, published articles and detailed Questions & Answers on medical, dental and schooling to provide individuals and their families with all information needed to assist in the return to the UK.

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04   Healthcare information for rebasing families

If your family is moving back to the UK, ensure you know how to access the healthcare you require. You must first de-register from you current medical providers (dentist, medical centre), making a note of your NHS number.

While your soldier is likely to see little difference, the other members of your family will either need to register with the local military medical centre if appropriate, or a local NHS GP practice – especially if you are undergoing ongoing treatment or have specific health needs.

Find details of your local practices at:

To find out more about planning your UK healthcare before you move, click here.

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05   Claim your hotel costs when rebasing from Germany

Did you know that if you are moving back to the UK from Germany, you are entitled to hotel accommodation during your move? For some of you, this may be as many as 14 days and nights.

In order to pay for hotel and meal costs during your move, your soldier can apply for up to 90% of your total travel and subsistence costs via JPA two weeks before you move. AFF recommends you discuss this with your Unit Admin Office before applying.

Remember to ask for the advance to be paid into your UK bank account to enable you to pay for the bills associated with travel e.g. hotel fees, food bills etc.

Your soldier will then have 30 days to complete their claim and submit the receipts of the costs incurred via JPA; any remaining entitlement will be paid into your UK bank account.

Want to know more?

If you have any questions about moving back to the UK from Germany, contact AFF’s Regional Manager, Germany at

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06   Making the move to the UK work for your career

Do you work for the Labour Support Unit (LSU) in Germany?

With rebasing now upon us – make sure you’re ready for your return to the UK.

Getting UK job-ready

The LSU recommends the following top tips to help you get job-ready once you’re back in the UK:

  • Get references from LSU whilst it still exists.
  • Get references from any Line Managers or colleagues before they leave Germany (or get their forwarding contact details).
  • Compile details for any Disclosure and Barring Service checks necessary for employment in the UK – for example, contact details for anyone you might like to use as a referee.
  • Get your CV refreshed and written before you leave Germany and take advantage of the Lifeworks course if it comes your way.
  • Apply for a good conduct certificate.
  • Get a copy of your latest Performance Management (where applicable) and a copy of your job description from LSU.

Make your qualifications count

Ensure any German qualifications you hold are converted to recognisable English ones – where applicable. Contact the National Recognition Information Centre (NARIC) at or contact the German local Chamber of Commerce.

Don’t miss out on NI credits

Fill out and send off the CA1 Form for MOD NI Credits four weeks before you leave Germany so that your NI record will be credited and up-to-date in case you need to claim JSA (contributory); you can obtain this form from your UWO, HIVE or click here to download.

Want to know more?

For more information, contact AFF Germany at

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07   Handy checklist

You will need to:

  • Check whether your current contents insurance covers your belongings whilst in transit.
  • De-register your vehicle.
  • Cancel any German contracts AT LEAST three-six months in advance of leaving. A generic letter is available from all UWOs and HIVEs to assist.
  • Cancel your Kindergeld benefit.
  • Close any German bank accounts.

Your local HIVE produces up-to-date guides detailing all of the above and more.

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