RAF Mildenhall is located in the county of Suffolk, in the region of East Anglia, England, a rural farming area, with extensive travel opportunities both in the UK and on the European continent. The United Kingdom is a high cost of living for the military. Personnel should be prepared to defray added expenses not normally found in the States. The telephone number for the base operator is 011-44-1638-541110 and DSN 314-238-1110.
In order to meet a perceived “continental threat,” the British military developed the idea to site a RAF bomber base at Mildenhall in the late 1920s. Shortly thereafter, the government purchased the land in 1929, and completed the first buildings in 1931. Three years later, RAF Mildenhall opened on October 16, 1934, as one of the RAF’s largest bomber stations. For more information, visit the installation’s homepage.
“Generate air refueling combat power and critical combat support”. RAF Mildenhall is part of the United States Air Forces in Europe (USAFE).
Approx. 3,000 United States military members
Approx. 900 Civilians (U.S. and MOD)
Approx. 3,000 Family members
If you will be arriving at a London airport, plan your flight for early morning arrival in order to use the base shuttle bus, and processing through customs may also involve a long wait. The shuttle bus service is provided two times each day from Heathrow to RAF Mildenhall. This will cost 60 pounds each, including dependents. If you have trouble locating the area to catch this shuttle, visit the WELCOME counter in either airport and they will give you directions. If your flight arrives after the departure of the shuttle you are authorized to take a taxi or bus to RAF Mildenhall, or stay in a hotel overnight, and you can claim the expense on your travel voucher.
There is no shuttle bus service from Gatwick or Stansted airports to RAF Mildenhall, so contact TMO to make advance taxi arrangements. FAX information (including PCS orders) to TMO Passenger Section (DSN FAX 314-238-2250 or 011-44-1638-542250), or ask your sponsor for assistance. Additional on base transportation includes a shuttle bus to and from the flightline area and a free base taxi for military members from RAF Mildenhall to RAF Lakenheath for official appointments. This is provided by 100th Logistics Readiness Squadron, so please call 238-2339 or 01638 542339 for more information.
While you may find helpful information in this overview, be sure to contact your sponsor for additional information about your move and to coordinate your pick up upon arrival. Your sponsor will also provide you with more assistance prior to your arrival. If you have not been assigned a sponsor, contact your new squadron at RAF Mildenhall or the Airman & Family Readiness Center at DSN 314-238-3406, or 011-44-1638-543406 to request assistance. Once you receive your orders, you can get a Post Office Box to forward your mail.
To send mail enroute, mail items to the general delivery address for RAF Mildenhall. The general delivery address is your name, gaining organization, PSC 37-General Delivery, APO AE 09459. Send your sponsor a copy of your orders and he/she will be able to secure a box for you.
For more information, please refer to the Sponsorship Topic.
Lodging is available on base at the Gateway Inn, 011-44-1638-542965 or DSN 314-238-2965. Be sure to arrange for your lodging prior to your arrival. Reservations can be made up to one year in advance without a copy of PCS Orders. There are limited pet rooms (9) available as well. If the Gateway Inn is full, lodging is also available at the Liberty Lodge, RAF Lakenheath, 011-44-1638-546700 or DSN 314-226-6700. RAF Lakenheath is a neighboring USAF base about 15 minutes away from RAF Mildenhall.
Additional temporary quarters in the surrounding area of RAF Mildenhall are the following:
Shakespeare Lodge, 011-44-1638-711782 or 011-44-01638-510136.
Please visit the Airman & Family Readiness Center (Bldg. 460; temporary location starting 16 July 2012 is Bldg. 440) for a wide range of relocation services and programs. An overview of available resources will be provided to you at your initial Intro briefing. GPS and cell phones may be available for loan out to assist with house-hunting and your initial getting settled.
In-processing requirements: Active Duty members must report to Military Personnel (Bldg 436) on the first duty day after arrival to receive in-processing checklists, a Ration card and to update Common Access Cards. Members should contact or visit the Airman & Family Readiness Center to get signed up for the Intro/Newcomer’s Briefings. Intro briefings last 2 days, and are held every Tuesday from 7:45 a.m. – 3:00 p.m., and Thursday from 7:45 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. Spouses are welcome to attend both of the Intro Days but MUST attend Day 2 if they plan to drive in the UK. Members must also report to the RAF Mildenhall Housing Office within two duty days of arrival.
After moving into quarters and while waiting for the arrival of your household goods, you may be able to borrow basic items such as small appliances, cookware, and dishes from the Loan Locker at Family Services, Building 460 (011-44-1638-543406 or DSN 314-238-3406). Other basic furniture items and appliances may be borrowed from RAF Feltwell. RAF Feltwell is a neighboring USAF base about 20 minutes away from RAF Mildenhall. This base maintains the Furniture Management Office (FMO).
Critical Installation Information
The United Kingdom is a high cost of living area for the military. The currency used in the UK is pounds sterling. The pound is divided into 100 pence. Paper money comes in 5, 10, 20, or 50 pounds notes. Pence (similar to what we call coins) are 5, 10, 20, 50 or the 1 or 2 pound coin. Money can be exchanged from dollars to pounds (or vice versa) at the bank, credit union or clubs.
An added benefit of a USAFE assignment is the ability to travel in Europe and see sights that many people spend a lifetime just dreaming about. Your Military Personnel Section will ensure that members and their families have the appropriate documents to enter the country where they will be assigned. All dependants will need a VISA to live in the UK before entering the country. If you wish to travel while assigned in Europe it is recommended (not mandatory) that you and your family acquire tourist passports (at your expense) before coming to Europe. Your tourist passport will ensure you can travel freely to all European countries. A no-fee passport will not allow entry into some European countries.
Passports and Visas
Ensure member and/or dependents have the required passports and/or VISA prior to final out-processing. Member and/or dependents are not allowed to final out-process without the required passports/VISAS in hand for themselves (if applicable) and/or dependents. Members electing the accompanied tour will not be permitted to out-process without having the required passports/VISAS in hand for themselves (if applicable) and/or dependents.
These actions are necessary to prevent unforeseen hardships to the military members and their families. Therefore, as a last reiteration, it is essential, members do not out-process without having the appropriate passports/VISAS for themselves (if applicable) and/or dependents.
Arriving in the UK without the appropriate documents, could result in your family being deported. There are also consequences for unaccompanied dependents (those who are in-country where the sponsor is NOT assigned). In accordance with AFI 36-3020, para 2.1. Dependents Travel to a Designated Place – Follow on (DTDP) and the Personnel Services Delivery Guide, ‘Family Member Travel’: When applying for the DTDP, the sponsor is required to complete the application and sign and understand the UK fact sheet. The fact sheet lists logistical support that dependents will be authorized while in the country without the sponsor. The sponsor is responsible for informing his dependents what entitlements they are and are not authorized. For command sponsorship information please contact the Military Personnel Section at 314-238-2858/4140/6389.
The contact number for the base operator is 011-44-1638-541110 and DSN 314-238-1110.