Flight tags

Our sqn has introduced ‘flight tags’, narrow slides on epaulettes, in the corresponding colours of our flights (red, green etc). Are these actually a thing as per uniform regs as they look ridiculus, especially the green and yellow ones. I can not see anything on ACP1358, but have seen other sqns with something similar?

If so, why are staff willing to follow Regs, but only in certain instances like this?

It’s against regulations. Most WWOs will nip out in the bud.


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How widespread are the flashes/tags then?

Not very, as most units that have tried it have been told off!

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Definitely not in the regs and you could never wear them off the squadron.

That said, they’ve been good enough for Sandhurst, Cranwell etc, used properly they’re useful and I can see what your staff are thinking. At one point IOT even had coloured neckerchiefs from memory.

Problem comes when, as often happens, the flight system that starts with the best of intentions is wildly over complicated and ends up being forgotten about. Then you’ve got people just wearing coloured bits of cloth for no reason.

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I know one Sqn went the whole hog & had flight crests created & printed onto hoodies & polo tops.

Flight tags make sense in a training base with multiple intakes/courses where personnel keep changing & hardly anyone know each other - they are effectively TRFs for training bases.

In the air cadets they serve no purpose & are just another thing to cause confusion.

On a side note, I didn’t think you could use red & green due to potential discrimination on colour blindness.



Definitly wouldnt recommend emailing your wwo (wwo.wing@rafac.mod.gov.uk) asking where they feature in dress regs…


Why not?

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I was beind sarcastic. As a WWO i love it when cadets ask me to clarify uniform and drill Qs

Would it not be best to discuss with the rest of the NCO team first, trying not to point fingers at the staff members implementing the scheme

Of course managing locally is the prefered approach


Arguably yes, however you have asked this question to a group of people who enjoy throwing hand grenades into these situations…

You know me to well

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Do not just go straight to the WWO with this. It’ll have been an over enthusiastic staff member genuinely trying to implement something beneficial for the squadron.

If they don’t get feedback how can they know it’s not working?

Imagine if as an NCO team you’d introduced something and the cadets just went straight to the OC complaining, you’d feel a little put out. Same applies here.

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Okay thank you all for helping :blush:

You called?

I’ve seen these used to great effect on wing camps and courses so don’t see why it’s such a big deal at a local level! Just not to be worn off unit


Coloured tags are effective in creating a level playing field or alternative hierarchy for the duration of a course or exercise. They should not be worn in conjunction with rank slides (with the exception of student officers / APOs wearing their graduation rank on white backing or students on the DE SNCO course).

I actually quite like them, certainly on bigger squadrons. It helps foster a sense of identity in the flights (same as we have squadron identification badges) and makes it easy to assign responsibility to cadet SNCOs (who otherwise may struggle to keep track of how many cadets they’ve got in each flight).

I would welcome this being formalised - and of course, they’re only applied for on-squadron activity (and at the moment, non-photographed activity).