British forces overseas posting: Cyprus

A complete overview of Cyprus and its UK bases, a guide to the island and employment opportunities for civilian UK dependents.

Important notice

This content is currently under review. Information on this page may not be accurate.


If you have been posted to or are considering a posting to Cyprus then you will discover that life in Cyprus is very different from back in the UK, or in Germany for that matter. While you will undoubtedly have fun in the sun, a tour here will be operationally focused for most people.

There are important jobs to do, which will require commitment and dedication. We are quite a long way from home, some of the accommodation is pretty old and we can’t replicate all of the health and social welfare facilities available in the UK.

However, there are many compensations, great weather for most of the year, plenty of opportunities for sport, hobbies and adventurous training, and many interesting places to visit. There is much for everyone, no matter what age or inclination.

Cyprus: a quick guide

Even if you’ve been here before, there’s always a new world to discover. Cyprus lies at the crossroads of three continents, where east meets west and a new experience awaits for you under the sun every day. Where championship golf courses, inviting beaches, and breathtaking mountain trails lie around luxurious hotels.

History of Cyprus

Cyprus was the site of early Phoenician and Greek colonies. For centuries its rule passed through many hands. It fell to the Turks in 1571 and a large Turkish colony settled on the island.

In World War I, at the outbreak of hostilities with Turkey, Britain annexed the island. It was declared a Crown colony in 1925. The Greek population, which regarded Greece as its mother country, sought self determination and union (enosis) with Greece. In 1955 a guerrilla war against British rule was launched by the National Organisation of Cypriot Combatants (EOKA). In 1958 Greek Cypriot nationalist leader Archbishop Makarios began calling for Cypriot independence rather than union with Greece. During this period Turkish Cypriots began demanding that the island be partitioned between the Greek and Turkish populations.

Cyprus became an independent nation on August 16, 1960, after Greek and Turkish Cypriots agreed on a constitution, which excluded both the possibility of partition as well as of union with Greece. Makarios became the country’s first president.

Fighting between Greek and Turkish Cypriots flared up in the early 1960s and a UN peacekeeping force was sent to the island in 1965.

Moving to Cyprus

Unaccompanied baggage

As soon as possible after receiving your posting authority it is advisable to contact your unit quartermaster department or PD clerk regarding the shipment of your unaccompanied baggage. They will confirm your allowance and entitlements.

You will need to complete F/Mov/713A prior to the collection of your unaccompanied baggage and a customs form to enable you to import your personal goods into Cyprus. Don’t be alarmed by this form, you should only list major electrical goods and furniture you will be sending eg. fridge freezer, three piece suite, microwave etc, given that your cubic capacity limits what you can bring. The excess charge per cubic metre over your limit is expensive.

Household furniture and other articles which you do not wish to bring can be stored in the UK at public expense. A removal service does operate in Cyprus, however the capacity is greatly reduced compared to that for a move within Europe. Although you might have been advised that it takes six weeks from time of collection to time of delivery, previous experience has shown that eight weeks is a more sensible timescale.

Unlike Europe there is no requirement to give a quarter address in Cyprus prior to shipment. All unaccompanied baggage received at the Port Unit in Limassol will be stored until your arrival. Please refer to the baggage scales (entitlements) at Annex F.

Ensure your movements clerk submits the appropriate F Mov forms to DPRC London.
Continuity post personnel (HQ UNFICYP only) have an alternative travel option (see below).


Complete an F/Mov/713 form and return it to your unit families office.

M&S shipping will contract a civilian storage firm to collect and store the remainder of your personal belongings and household contents.

What you need to bring with you

What to bring

Lots of summer clothes

In the heat of the summer you may find yourselves having to change a couple of times a day.

Lots of swimwear

Because of the time spent in the swimming pool and in the sea, swimwear takes a battering and the sun does something to the elastic.


Whether or not you have central heating you will be cold in the winter, especially at night.


Invaluable, but can be bought on the island at reasonable prices.


Unless you constantly wash up this is a good idea as it is not advisable to leave dishes, etc, in the sink or on the side (within minutes they are covered in ants). Check first if there is plumbing in your quarter.




There are great opportunities for biking, both flat and mountainous terrain.

Tumble dryer

During the winter months there is a lot of moisture in the air and very few married quarters (MQs) are centrally heated.

Washing machine

Some booklets advise against bringing your own machine. Machines can be hired but over a two or three year period for a machine that regularly breaks down, rent can be costly. Bringing your own will save you money and most makes can be serviced on the Island.

Fridge freezer

As above. All quarters are issued with an adequate fridge/freezer but bring your own if only to be used as a drinks fridge.

TV and TV stand

Quarters are only provided with a coffee table to put your TV on.


Cheap to subscribe to the internet and the cheapest way to contact family and friends.

Flat pack computer table

Can be expensive to buy here.


Not provided in MQs.

Ornaments/pictures, etc

Make your MQ a home.


Not issued in quarters. Same connection as UK.

Winter clothes

It gets very cold in winter and is often wet.

Skiing clothes

Needed in winter up at Troodos (normally plenty of snow for skiing).

Plugs and extension leads

Same as UK.


Sealed plastic containers are a must, but are cheap in Cyprus.

Education and qualification certificates

If you wish to gain employment then you will need to produce originals, photocopies are not accepted.

Birth/marriage certificates

If you need to apply for a replacement passport or passport for children then you will need originals.

Cool box

Ideal for the beach, but can be bought cheaply on the island.

Garden furniture

You will get lots of use out of it. Plastic furniture can be bought cheaply in Cyprus.

What not to bring

Toiletries and sun creams

Readily available in Navy, Army and Air Force Institutes (NAAFI) and local pharmacies and supermarkets.

Nappies and wet wipes

Good selection of popular brands as above.

Ironing board

Issued in MQ.

Gardening tools

Issued in MQ.

Vacuum cleaner

Issued in MQ.


Issued in MQ. Most MQs have shutters or venetian blinds.


We do have grass in the winter months which may need cutting. Household lawnmowers are not very good for this as the ground is often full of small stones. You can hire a gardener.


All MQs have fitted glass light covers.

Tinned food and dry goods

All readily available, several large supermarkets on the island.

There are always people leaving Cyprus who want to sell things before they move.

UK dependent employment at British Forces Cyprus

How to find employment in Cyprus

The staff in the Civilian Human Resource Team are responsible for the recruitment of all civilian UK dependents (UKD) and are located in C Block, HQ BFC Episkopi.

CIV HR Resource enquiries:

00 357 2596 3852

00 357 2596 2385

00 357 2596 3527

00 357 2596 3456

There are several employment opportunities for UKDs. We currently have approximately 582 UKD posts across the island. There are various diffent types of positions such as Learning Support Assistants, Nurses, Early Year staff, HIVE staff, Admin roles, Managerial roles etc.

Please note that the responsibility for applying for advertised posts rests with the individual. The CIV HR Resource staff do not provide an individual call forward or notification service. Also, applications received after the stipulated closing date will not be accepted.

Please be aware that the CIV HR Resource office is not the only route to obtaining employment within BFC/SBAA. Other agencies such as CESSAC, SSAFA and HIVEs all recruit across the Island. However, they work outside command secretariat policy and take responsibility for employing civilian staff under differing terms and conditions as well as advertising their own vacancies.

How do I apply at the job openings?

To apply for a particular vacancy of SBAA/BFC, you will be required to complete an application form which you may find on the SBAA webpage vacancies.

Please note that only one job vacancy can be applied for on each application form. This form is to be submitted via email to

Kindly note that only applications in the initial Word document format will be accepted. Other formats (for example, PDF) or other documents like CV’s will be not accepted.

It is the individual’s responsibility to ensure that fully completed application forms are forwarded to the Civilian HR Resource Team. Once received and checked your application will be forwarded to the line manager of the post for sift and short listing and if successful you will be invited for interview.

Vacancy Campaigns and Adverts

All job openings can be found on the SBAA webpage vacancies. The adverts provide information on the post grade, formal entry requirements, description of post and closing dates.

Core competency framework

Initial paper applications will be marked objectively against the core competences advertised within the job advert by the recruiting panel. Interviews for positions within BFC are conducted using a behavioural technique which will test you on your experiences and ask for examples of events. BFC uses core competences as a set of standards for entry and employment. Candidates should be able to demonstrate the requisite competencies for the grade. The Situation, Task, Action, Result (STAR) process should be followed for writing the competences and during the interviews.

  • situation – Describe the situation you were faced with.
  • task – Outline the task that you were given / faced with in this situation.
  • actions – Describe the actions you carried out to complete the task.
  • result – Describe the result or outcome of your actions, including the benefits/success.

Updates to this page

Published 12 December 2012
Last updated 19 February 2020 + show all updates
  1. Updated information in regards to UK dependent employment at British Forces Cyprus.

  2. Added contact details

  3. First published.

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