• What Does Each Career Earn?

      Compensation Estimator

      What Does Each Career Earn?

      They call it making a living for a reason. Whether a service member has a family to support or is responsible just for himself or herself, salary in the Military provides a comfortable lifestyle with pay that competes with most civilian careers. Salary in the Military comes from two sources: base pay and special pays. Base pay is the same across all Service branches, and increases are based on rank and time in the Service. While not a guarantee of exact compensation, our compensation estimator should give you an idea of the salary and benefits you can earn as an active-duty service member.

      Military Pay & Benefits FAQs
      Military Pay Grades (PDF)

Compensation EstimatoriThis estimate is for informational purposes only, and assumes compensation for one year of full-time active-duty service. Reservists are compensated for one weekend per month and two weeks per year unless deployed full-time.

To get started, answer a few questions about yourself. Then, explore options by changing your selections below. You can update the information you've already submitted and see how your compensation might change over time.

Year 10

Move slider to adjust annual compensation by year
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Years of service

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    • Base Pay

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In Year 10:
Special Pays:i Special Pays
A variety of special pays are provided for some service members based on occupational specialty or specific tasks performed. Examples include service members whose jobs require working with hazardous chemicals, speaking a foreign language fluently or spending extended periods of time away from home. This chart shows examples of current Special Pays, but you should consult a recruiter for information about specifics. Service members may earn no more than two special pays simultaneously.
Skill/Task Estimated Monthly Special Pay
Master Diver $240-340
Foreign Language Proficiency $25-500
Hazardous Duty $150
Flight Pay $150-250
Imminent Danger $225
Submarine Duty $75-425
percent of people at this salary level receive an additional
Notes:
  1. Base pay estimates are based on military average across all Service branches using actual base pay data aggregated by years of service.
  2. The Housing Allowance estimates shown are based on an average of allowances in all locations, but the amount varies based on cost of living in specific locations. (For example, it generally costs more to live in a major city than a rural neighborhood.) Housing Allowance is also affected by pay grade and number of dependents.
  3. Medical Insurance in-kind benefit provides 100 percent coverage and there is no limit to the value of medical care service members or their families may receive.
  4. Dental Insurance in-kind benefit provides 100 percent coverage and is estimated at $152.28 per person per year. There is no limit to the value of dental care service members may receive. Family members may be added at a small additional cost.
  5. The Military contributes 6.2% of total compensation to the Federal Insurance Contributions Act (FICA) tax and matches contributions, like civilian employers.
  6. Medical Professional Pay is calculated based on several factors including Variable Special Pay and Incentive Special Pay, commonly awarded to medical officers. Talk to a recruiter about your specific case.
  7. Some overseas housing allowances are paid in local currency and are not included in U.S. dollar pay figures.
  8. The compensation estimator does not include special pays, such as foreign language pay, that some service members may receive under certain circumstances.
  9. The compensation estimator reflects active-duty pay only. For more information about compensation for the Reserve and Guard components, visit any of the following pages: