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Receive Pay & Benefits as a Coast Guard Officer

As someone entering the Coast Guard as an officer, you will gain both tangible and intangible benefits.

Let's begin with some of the intangibles. First, you will hone your leadership and management skills. You will also become proficient at administrative and supervisory duties as you will take on important responsibility quickly.

On the other hand, you will make a good starting salary, receive allowances for meals and housing, and be given comprehensive medical and dental plans at no charge. You will also have access to money for education and eligibility for retirement benefits.

Below is a quick list of the tangible benefits you can receive as an officer in the Coast Guard:

Steady Income:

You are paid twice a month, on the 1st and 15th of every month, based on your pay grade. An established salary chart defines salaries for both increases in rank and increased tenure in the Coast Guard. For more information, download the most recent military pay scale.


You are promoted based on your knowledge of your chosen career field, your performance, time in pay grade, and service requirements.

Paid Vacation:

You earn 2.5 days paid vacation per month for a total of 30 days each year.


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.

Health Care:

While on active-duty, you will receive complete medical and dental care at no cost.

Life Insurance:

As an active-duty member, you have the option to be covered up to $400,000 in term life insurance at a minimal monthly cost. You may select a lower amount of coverage. For more information, view exact insurance coverages.


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. One more thing you should note, all existing allowances for food, housing and clothing are not subject to federal or state income taxes.


Through the Montgomery GI Bill, we will help you pay for college or vocational technical training. Find out more and also get up-to-date official information about the new "Post-9/11 GI Bill" (which offers a substantial increase in benefits).

Additional Benefits:

There are exchange and commissary privileges, moving allowances, temporary lodging expenses, travel, survivor benefits, Veterans Administration home loans and more.