After being a watcher of this thread and reading the input of pre joiners in the application process, trained ranks and time served who are leaving I thought I would add my spin. I won't put too much personal spin as so I won't get outed. I passed out not that long ago and I am on my first draft and got sent to 43 like the majority of people passing out. Completing training is the best feeling ever, that green lid is mine and mine for life. Nobody can take that away. The Royal Marine Commando's are reknowned the world over and although many have tried, only few can earn that title. Did I know about DSS? No...I only read about it on this forum whilst in the application stage and didn't really understand it. You get briefed about it in training but not til the back end, like week 26 or something. The whole process is backwards as you don't spend 18-24 months as GD. I know lads who got their spec choice before they even arrived at unit and I know lads who got pinged for drives after 8 months. I have been overseas twice and although life is slightly mundane, it is not a bad life. Some days are hectic yet somedays you get paid to have a game of footy then go on the *text deleted*. Swings and roundabouts. Every time I have asked a career question, the answer is always 'ping yourself' like somebody is earning commission for getting lads to ping themselves. I am now approaching that ping zone so I am slighly anxious as more rides on it than just the job, such as location, family life etc. Worst bit is you get pinged but won't find out where you are going until halfway through the course which can be an admin nightmare. Commitment bonuses do not exist anymore for newer joiners and as has been mentioned, the pension has changed. People are leaving in droves because quite simply nothing is going on around the world that we are involved in. Lads joined up to be elite soldiers. Not to be clerks, storemen etc. From what I have heard, lads who had PW, MA (popular specs) and got pinged, by the time there 2 years of a rubbish draft is over with they are so thredders they just want to get out asap. Take what you want from that guys, the days of telic/herrick are over and being able to be on the frontline and achieve something in the space of 4 years are gone. I know of lads doing 2 years at 43, pinged for drives for 2 years then leaving. Although they earnt that green lid, those 4 years are not what a Commando should do.