The National Guard offers many incentives for joining; these include several types of cash signing bonuses, education bonuses, and additional incentives. If you qualify for more than one bonus the National Guard may combine them to pay a combined bonus, which is not to exceed $20,000.
Most cash enlistment incentives may also be combined with either the Guard’s Loan Repayment Program or National Guard College Fund, but not both.
National Guard Enlistment Incentives can be broken down into the following categories:
- National Guard Cash Bonuses
- National Guard Education Incentives
How the Air National Guard Pays Bonuses
Enlistment bonuses will be paid in one lump sum upon successful completion of initial entry training.
Air National Guard Cash Bonuses
The bonuses include cash for choosing a high demand military occupational specialty (MOS), for selecting a specific date to begin basic training, for being willing to leave for boot camp within 45 days (Quick Ship), for advanced civilian skills, and more.
The following is a quick summary of the current Air National Guard Cash Bonus:
- National Guard Non-Prior Service Enlistment Bonuses – up to $20,000
- Non-Prior Service Quick Ship Bonus - $5,000
- Prior Service Affiliation Bonus – up to $20,000
- Civilian Acquired Skills Program (CASP) Bonus – $2,000
National Guard MOS Non-Prior Service Bonuses
There are currently three military occupational specialties for highly qualified recruits that will qualify for the $20,000 maximum:
Top Ten MOSs that qualify for a $20,000 bonus
- Infantryman (11B)
- Unit Supply Specialist (92Y)
- Combat Engineer (21B)
- Military Police (31B)
- Automated Logistic Specialist (92A)
- Cannon Crewmember (13B)
- Motor Transport Operator (88M)
- Food Service Operations (92G)
- Light Wheel Vehicle Mechanic (63B)
- Health Care Specialist (91W)
In addition to the “Top Ten” Military Occupations Specialties listed each state may offer a $20,000 bonus for up to 20 selected MOSs that are not on the “Top Ten.”
Non-Prior Service Quick Ship Bonus
To qualify an applicant must be willing and able to report to basic training within 45 days. This bonus cannot be combined with the Top Ten or CASP bonus programs.
Prior Service Bonus
An Enlistment Bonus of up to $15,000 may be available to prior service members who have completed their Military Service Obligation but have no more than 16 years total service. The eligibility requirements for enlistment bonuses vary. Prior Service personnel who enlist and qualify for the PS Enlistment Bonus $15,000 or $7,500) will receive 50% of the authorized bonus upon enlistment and approval. Check with your local Recruiter for details.
In addition if you are still serving in the Inactive Ready Reserve you may qualify for an Affiliation Bonus of up to $20,000 for a six-year contract.
Civilian Acquired Skills Program (CASP) Bonus
If you have never been in the military and have worked over two years in the same type of occupation that you are enlisting into the Guard for, you could be entitled to a $10,000 bonus.
National Guard Education Incentives
Student Loan Repayment Program
The Student Loan Repayment Program will pay up to $20,000 to those who have an existing student loan obligation at the time of enlistment in the Air National Guard. In addition, current Air National Guard members who extend their enlistment contract for a minimum period of six years are also eligible for this program if they meet certain requirements.
The Montgomery G.I. Bill, Selected Reserve (MGIB-SR)
The Air National Guard offers the Montgomery G.I. Bill, Selected Reserve (MGIB-SR), a tuition assistance program to help with college expenses.
This benefit pays you a stipend, up to $309 a month (for full-time enrollment), while attending college (or other approved technical school). Over a period of 36 months, you can receive up to $11,124.
The Montgomery G.I. Bill, Selected Reserve may be used in addition to the 100% Federal Tuition Assistance Program and the Air National Guard GI Bill Kicker. Prior service members may also be entitled to the MGIB-SR.
The National Guard College Fund or (MGIB-SR) GI Bill Kicker
The Air National Guard (MGIB-SR) Kicker pays up to an additional $350 a month while attending college (or other approved technical school). Paid as a stipend, this incentive pays up to $12,600 over a period of 36 months.
Additional bonus information
- Applicants choosing the 6X2 or 8X0 enlistment option become eligible to receive the SR-GI Bill & "Kicker" benefits if qualified
- If otherwise qualified (for SLRP) enlistees will be eligible to receive the $20,000 Student Loan Repayment Program (SLRP) in addition to their enlistment bonus
- These incentives will terminate without recoupment upon entry into the Simultaneous Membership Program (SMP) or Reserve Officer Training Corp (ROTC)
- Payment Schedule: The ARNG will process initial payment of 50% upon successful completion of IADT and soldier becomes MOS qualified. The second and final payment of 50% will be processed on the 36th month anniversary of the date of enlistment
- By law the total amount of any cash NPS incentive is limited to $20,000
- Glossary NPS applicants do not qualify
- Applicants enlisting for employment as a MILTECH or AGR are not qualified for these incentives