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Royal Marines commando

Alternative titles for this job include Green beret

Royal Marines commandos take part in frontline combat, and are sent at short notice to deal with emergency situations.

Average salary (a year)

£19,000 Starter


£42,000 Experienced

Typical hours (a week)

Variable variable

You could work

evenings / weekends / bank holidays away from home

How to become

Explore the different ways to get into this role.

How to become Royal Marines commando

You can get into this job through:

  • an apprenticeship
  • applying directly


You could apply to join the marines through an HM Forces Serviceperson Level 2 Intermediate Apprenticeship.

You'll apply directly to the marines to find the best apprenticeship route for you. This will depend on your qualifications and which service role you're interested in.

Entry requirements

  • entry requirements vary

More Information


You can join the Royal Marines Reserve to get some experience of what life is like in the service and to learn new skills at the same time. You'll do the same commando training as the regulars, but over a longer period.

If you're between 13 and 18 years old, you can join the Royal Marines Cadets.

Direct Application

You can apply directly to join the Royal Navy as a commando. You don't need any specific qualifications, but you will need to meet the navy's eligibility requirements. For example, you must:

  • be aged between 16 and 32
  • be at least 145cm tall
  • pass fitness tests

If your application is accepted, you'll be invited to talk to someone at your local armed forces careers office about what you want to do. You will then do the Defence Aptitude Assessment (DAA) followed by an interview.

If you have the right skills, you'll be asked to attend the 3-day Candidate Preparation Course. This includes further interviews, fitness, medical and aptitude tests. If successful, you'll be offered a place at the commando training centre at Lympstone in Devon.

More Information

Career tips

You will need to pass physical fitness assessments, including swimming, to be accepted into the Royal Navy. Get fit to Join has information on how to check your current fitness and how to improve to the level required.

Further information

You'll find more details about how to become a commando from Royal Navy Careers.

What it takes

Find out what skills you’ll use in this role.

What it takes

Skills and knowledge

You'll need:

  • physical fitness and endurance
  • persistence and determination
  • patience and the ability to remain calm in stressful situations
  • concentration skills
  • active listening skills
  • the ability to accept criticism and work well under pressure
  • to be thorough and pay attention to detail
  • thinking and reasoning skills
  • to be able to carry out basic tasks on a computer or hand-held device

What you’ll do

Discover the day to day tasks you’ll do in this role.

What you'll do

Day-to-day tasks

As a Royal Marines commando, you could:

  • carry out special combat missions
  • intercept drug smugglers at sea or deliver humanitarian aid
  • collect, co-ordinate and interpret intelligence reports
  • fly aircraft and helicopters
  • lead training exercises, such as beach assaults and mountain survival

Working environment

You could work at a military base, on a ship or in a warzone.

Your working environment may be physically and emotionally demanding and outdoors in all weathers.

You may need to wear a uniform and protective clothing.

Career path and progression

Look at progression in this role and similar opportunities.

Career path and progression

With training and experience you could move up through the ranks and get a commission to become an officer.

Throughout your Royal Marines career, you'll have the opportunity to gain qualifications in your chosen field.

On leaving active service, you could use your skills, qualifications and experience to go into a new career. You can find details about support and opportunities from:

Current opportunities

Find apprenticeships, courses and jobs available near you.

Current opportunities

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