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Starting January this year, the troops’ food allowance increase of 5.2% will raise the monthly benefits military members receive as follows:
—Enlisted officer rates: $476.09
—Warrant officer rates: $328.10
BAS 2024 enlisted rates increased by $23.53 per month compared to 2023, while the warrant officer rates increased by $16.22. The rates are significantly higher than the 2010 officer rates, which were less than $220.
Meanwhile, BAS II rates will go up to $952.18 this 2024, compared to $905.12 in 2023.
|BAS Rates (Enlisted Officers)
|BAS Rates (Warrant Officers)
What is BAS?
Basic Allowance for Subsistence (BAS) is a monthly stipend available to United States military personnel who’ve completed basic training. BAS is separate from military pay because it offsets the costs of meals, groceries, and other food-related expenses. It’s provided to service members in the U.S. Army, Air Force, Navy, Marine Corps, Coast Guard, National Guard, and even Space Force.
Unlike the Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH), which can be shared with military families, BAS is not intended to cover the costs of family members’ meals. It’s set aside to assist active duty members and troops not deployed (or on temporary duty) to pay for base resources by dining at the mess hall daily.
Remember: BAS is for individuals, but not veterans, and you receive it automatically.
BAH is for families (including veterans) and must be applied for (See more about BAH here.)
Will There Be a BAS Increase in 2024?
In January 2024, BAS increased by 5.2%—not as big as the 11% increase for 2023, but is still a substantial increase.
This BAS rate is also paired with a 3.9% increase in military BAH rates for 2024.
How is BAS Determined?
BAS is based on inflation and food costs and is determined by the Department of Defense (DoD) each year. Similar to how the DoD sets housing allowances, BAS rates are generally announced before the end or at the start of the calendar year.
The DoD adjusts the BAS rates annually, considering increases in food prices or the food cost index compiled by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. They’re also calculated based on costs in a specific zip code, so financial compensation is applicable no matter where you are.
Is BAS Different in Each State?
While food prices and BAS calculations are based on costs in a given zip code, the rates do not vary from state to state. However, they do vary between enlisted members and officers, with officers receiving slightly less than enlisted members.
BAS vs. BAS II
Both BAS and BAS II serve the same purpose but are different in two ways: Amount and eligibility. Only active duty service members can qualify for BAS II (not just anyone who’s received basic training), and the amount is double that of regular BAS.
How Do You Apply for BAS?
You don’t have to—members automatically receive BAS based on their eligibility.
How Do Service Members Receive BAS Payments?
There are two ways for active duty military members to receive their BAS stipend. You can have it paid directly at the same time as other military pay, or you could receive it separately through the meal card management system.
Do Veterans Get BAS Benefits?
Unlike BAH (which some vets may qualify for through the Post-9/11 GI Bill), veterans cannot receive BAS because it’s specifically designed to supplement active duty members’ meal costs while they are on base.
However, veterans have access to other government programs for financial assistance, like the Veterans Readiness program, which also offers monthly subsistence allowances based on student attendance rates and dependents.
For family members who have lost a loved one during active duty, the Caring for Survivors Act 2023 may provide additional monthly benefits to help supplement food costs. There are also options for housing or rent assistance, such as applying for Section 8 rental assistance or using BAH through the GI Bill. Veterans can also access several disability benefits to ensure they and their loved ones get much-needed care. Check local information for more details about how your local Veterans Service Office can help.
We help veterans understand their eligibility for government compensation and ensure they receive the benefits they deserve. We can also help determine your eligibility for other benefits like Social Security Disability Insurance or Supplemental Security Income.