MSF salaries reflect the humanitarian spirit of volunteerism as well as recognising the high level of professionals we recruit.

UK residents working overseas with MSF UK receive a UK fixed-term contract of employment. Contracts are signed for a specific time period, usually nine to 12 months with only a few exceptions.

MSF UK salary and costs

MSF UK field staff on their first mission are paid a monthly indemnity salary into a UK bank account. This is currently £8,988 per annum pro rata (gross).

Taxes and national insurance contributions will be deducted from this amount.

After your first 12 months with MSF your salary will increase in line with our salary scale which takes into account your previous work experience.

Annual leave

Whilst you are working with MSF you are entitled to 28 days paid holiday per year pro rata.

MSF UK pension

MSF UK offers a personal pension plan to expatriates after the completion of three months with MSF.

Contributions paid by you and MSF UK build up in your own retirement account. MSF UK contributions are dependent upon the percentage of salary you choose to contribute.

Further information can be obtained from your MSF UK HR contact.


MSF will arrange and cover you for all health insurance whilst on mission. This will continue for up to three months once you return to the UK. In the event of medical evacuations, repatriation is also covered.

Pre departure health checks

You will be required to complete a Health Declaration Form, which will be provided to you by the HR department and will then be screened by a travel clinic called Interhealth.

This documentation is confidential and will not be seen by the HR department. Interhealth will then inform the HR department when you are cleared to go on mission.

Expenses covered by MSF

  • Return economy air travel for the most direct and cost-effective route between the UK and the project. This may include a stopover for briefing and debriefing in Europe.
  • Reimbursement for the cost of obtaining necessary visas, certifications or other documentation (typically these are paid directly by MSF when organising your visa).
  • Certain vaccinations and related medical fees.
  • Accommodation and transportation during your contract (including briefings and debriefings).
  • Per diem based on the cost of living in your project country.
  • All training costs if you are placed on one of our preparation courses.

Working hours

MSF head of mission Terri Morris (2nd from left) meets with villagers who fled  Lord

MSF head of mission Terri Morris (2nd from left) meets with villagers who fled Lord's Resistance Army attacks in South Sudan, 2010. © Kate Geraghty

Working hours vary considerably depending on the project with, on average, one day off per week.

During an emergency, work can be hectic and you may be required to put in longer hours. However, time is normally set aside for rest and relaxation.

Besides these practical considerations, there are many intangible benefits.

Working for MSF is a challenging and rewarding personal and professional experience that allows you to help people in a very real way.

Learning and development

MSF strongly encourages people to continue working for the organisation beyond their first mission as their experience is of huge value to the effectiveness of our work. As such we offer various career opportunities to our field staff.

You can broaden your professional experience by working on a variety of different aid programmes, and have access to learning and development. For more info on L&D opportunities click here.

Career development

There are many long term career opportunities with MSF. Gaining more and varied MSF field experience makes you eligible for positions such as Logistical, Medical, or Project Coordinator, or Head of Mission.

There are also courses in areas such as project management, medical management, and logistics.

If you are interested in a career with MSF you are encouraged to discuss options with your Human Resource Officer at interview and the Learning and Development Officer.

For examples of MSF careers please click here.

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