Enlisted Coast Guardsmen receive competitive salary increasing with grade and longevity, and a comprehensive benefits package that includes free medical, dental and eye care; life insurance; 30-days paid vacation; GI Bill (Montgomery & Post 9-11); and tuition assistance are just the beginning of the benefits you’ll reap as a Coast Guard member.
As an active-duty member of the Coast Guard, you’ll be privy to a benefits package that is largely unheard of for most people just starting out. College tuition assistance; housing and meal allowance; free heath, dental and eye care; and 30 days paid vacation are just the beginning of the benefits offered to active-duty Guardians.
All full-time enlisted Guardians entering the Coast Guard make a little over $15,000 for their first year of service, plus they are entitled to other allowances depending on their status. Other allowances include sea pay, housing allowance (if you don’t use the government housing that is provided), clothing allowance, family separation allowance and hazardous-duty pay. You also can depend on pay raises that are given based on growth in rank and length of service. For more information, download the most recent military pay scale.
Through the Montgomery GI Bill, the Coast Guard will help you pay for college or vocational technical training. The Montgomery GI Bill offers a substantial increase in benefits over the Post 9-11 GI Bill.
Coast Guard members, both active-duty and Reserve, also can take advantage of the tuition assistance program to help pay for higher-level education.
Housing and Meals
You’ll receive additional tax-free money for Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH), if government housing is not available in the area you are stationed; Basic Allowance for Subsistence (BAS), if government dining facilities are not available in the area you are stationed; and a uniform allowance (for enlisted personnel only) to help maintain your uniform. Tax Advantage: All existing allowances for food, housing and clothing are not subject to federal or state income taxes.
Free Health, Dental and Eye Care
While on active-duty, you’ll receive complete medical, dental and eye insurance, at no cost.
You’ll receive 2.5 days paid vacation per month, for a total of 30 days paid vacation a year.
As a Guardian, you may get the opportunity to travel far and wide as part of your job. Not only will you get to see new places, you’ll do it on our dime. Also, as a Guardian, you will have access to military space-available flights. This is a unique privilege provided to service members, retirees and their families. Under the Space-Available (Space A) program, eligible passengers can fill unused seats on Department of Defense-owned or controlled aircraft, once all the space-required passengers and cargo have been accommodated.
You choose your career path based on your aptitude, physical abilities, security clearance, motivation and determination. Unlike other military services, the Coast Guard offers all specialties to both men and women equally – including combat roles.
As an active-duty member, you are covered for $400,000 in life insurance at a minimal cost. You also may elect to participate in the family life insurance plan and have your dependents covered.
- The benefits you’ll receive as a full-time Guardian also include certain health care and other benefits for your family. Plus, the Coast Guard will allow both men and women to take up to two years off (without pay) to stay home with a newborn. At the end of the two years, you can rejoin at the same rank as when you left. For more information, see TriCare.
- You’ll have shopping privileges at military bases and access to all kinds of recreational facilities.
- And, looking into the future, the Coast Guard offer various retirement plans, including one option that lets you retire and start receiving your pension after serving just 20 years.