air force bmt packing list
Air Force

What to Bring to Air Force Boot Camp (BMT)

If you recently joined the Air Force and you are wondering what to bring to Air Force boot camp, we have good news.

You can show up for training with just yourself and necessary paperwork, and you will get through training just fine.

However, if packing light is not what you care about, we put together a list of items that will serve to make your life easier.

Also, there are several items you should absolutely leave at home.

Unapproved items are confiscated until you graduate boot camp.

However, contraband is confiscated and not returned.

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Things You Need to Bring to Air Force Boot Camp

Things You Should Bring to Air Force Boot Camp

Things You Should NOT Bring to Air Force Boot Camp

Things You Need to Bring to Air Force Boot Camp

Brand new United States Air Force careers begin with first day of Air Force boot camp
Image: basictraining.af.mil

Special Note: Click Here to download a free Air Force Boot Camp (BMT) packing list.

There are several necessary items you need to bring to Air Force boot camp.

  • Paperwork – paperwork is vital, and it is essential to bring originals or certified copies. Also, make a copy of all these documents as a backup. You need your enlistment contract and all your school transcripts. Make sure you have your marriage license if you have one, and the birth certificates for your dependents if you have any. Bring a state identification and any documentation regarding citizenship, if applicable. Your recruiter will help you gather up all these documents and tell you how to order original documents if needed.
  • Visitor Access Request Letter – this letter sets your family up with the ability to get on base for your graduation. If your family members already have a military ID, this is not necessary.
  • List of contacts such as family and friends. Include their full name, address, and phone number. Make sure this information includes their legal names.
  • Prescriptions – you can bring the bottles if the prescription information is not expired and easily visible on the bottle. Also, you could bring in paper prescriptions. You will see a doctor on base about continued prescriptions. 
  • You need your banking information because you will set up direct deposit. Some banks have a direct deposit form you can print out. Otherwise, bring a voided check. You need to have your bank name, address, account, and routing numbers.
  • ATM Card, so you have access to your funds during training.
  • You may wear your eyeglasses when you first arrive at training. Bring your prescription along, as well. The Air Force will issue your glasses, but there is a period of time where you will need to wear your own glasses.
  • Two pairs of pants, three shirts, including a shirt with a collar, and close-toed shoes – these items are for your graduation weekend.
  • Three pairs of black or dark navy-blue spandex shorts. These shorts should have no visible branding
  • Females should bring six pairs of conservative underpants and sports bras.
  • For women with longer hair, bring hair ties and bobby pins that match the hair color.
  • Males should have three pairs of briefs or boxer shorts.

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The Air Force Provides for Purchase

These items are available for purchase for new recruits. If you opt not to pack these items, you will receive these all in a backpack.

The cost of this backpack full of necessities is deducted from your pay.

However, you avoid having to pack additional items, and you do not have to wonder if you are bringing the right things.

  • A laundry bag, laundry soap, and four mesh bags are necessary to handle all your laundry needs.
  • Sharpies, both black and silver, so you can mark your belongings and clothing with your personal information.
  • Padlock – while in training, you will have an area for your personal belongings. You need to keep this space locked up.
  • Towels – the Air Force likes uniformity. Therefore, you must fold your towels in a specific way. It is helpful to have towels that fold easily and fit in the designated space.  
  • ID holder, canteen, reflective belt, and flashlight – you can bring your own, but the military likes items to look the same. Boot camp is not the time in your life you want to stand out as unique.
  • Toothbrush/paste/case and floss – you can bring your own, and these items are available for purchase on base if you need to replace your own.
  • Notebook, ruler, and highlighter – part of Air Force boot camp are classes. You will spend time in a classroom, so having notebooks and other materials are necessary.
  • Pens, stamps, and envelopes – getting mail while in boot camp is fantastic. Return the favor by writing back to your friends and family.
  • Soap – if you bring your own, consider a liquid body soap. Bars of soap are challenging to keep clean and able to pass inspection.
  • Shower shoes are flip flops. You share showering space with many other people, so you need to protect your feet. Furthermore, foot powder is necessary for foot health.
  • Trash bags and storage containers – these items help you keep your space organized.
  • Nail care kit – your fingernails must pass inspection, too. So, keeping them tidy is a must. Plus, the nail clippers are handy to clip off loose threads from your uniform.

Things You Should Bring to Air Force Boot Camp

Airmen repeat the oath of enlistment at the basic training graduation ceremony
Image: af.mil

These items are not required but are suggested.

  • A prepaid phone card is helpful to avoid long distances charges when calling home.
  • Buy a prepaid cell phone and bring it along with the charger. This will ensure you can make emergency calls while you are traveling to Lackland Air Force Base for training.
  • Additional stationery in the event the issued notebook is not enough. You will have access to the Base Exchange (BX) to purchase additional items, however.
  • Feminine hygiene products – you might consider packing enough for two weeks. You will have access to purchase these items on base, however.
  • Conservative makeup – if you are female and wear makeup, you might consider packing a minimal amount for graduation and your Air Force boot camp photo.
  • Male recruits may bring a two-week supply of shaving supplies. Disposable shaving items are ideal for boot camp. Everything you own is subject to inspection, and razors are hard to keep pristine.

Related Article4 Steps For Visiting An Air Force Recruiter Near You

Things You Should NOT Bring to Air Force Boot Camp

Air Force boot camp Initial uniform issue includes a clothing fit check
Image: basictraining.af.mil
  • Cigarettes or other tobacco products – talk to your recruiter in advance for resources to reduce your dependency on nicotine well before Air Force boot camp.
  • MP3 players and radios are not permissible. It is best to leave these items at home.
  • Magazines – you will find you have limited access to the outside world. Do not bring magazines. 
  • Jewelry – talk to your recruiter about wedding bands and religious medallions. However, plan to leave your valuable jewelry safe at home.
  • High-value items – unnecessary items are packed up and stored during training; your high-value items are likely to remain secure. However, the best plan is to leave those at home, so you know they are safe.
  • Food and candy – if you plan to travel with snacks, plan to either consume them or throw them away before arrival.
  • Alcohol – do not bring alcohol with you to boot camp. This includes items such as mouth wash that contains alcohol.
  • Cell phones and smartwatches – bring an inexpensive prepaid cell phone and plan on retrieving your cell phone later after Air Force boot camp.
  • Over-the-counter medications and supplements are forbidden.
  • Fake nails are unnecessary and not allowed during boot camp. Have them removed before you leave.
  • Electric health and hair-care items, including face washers, curling irons, and hair dryers, are not permissible.
  • Weapons are confiscated. 

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Conclusion

The list of items you may bring to Air Force boot camp is longer than some of the other military branches.

However, you could show up with just yourself and the necessary paperwork and be just fine.

The Air Force issues you most of what you need and gives you opportunities to buy the rest.

Many toiletry items and personal items are available for purchase in a bundle and stored in a backpack.

However, there are a few items you should absolutely not have on your what to bring to Air Force boot camp list.

Leave these items at home because your instructors will confiscate them.

If you bring unnecessary items, your instructor will have you box these items up until the end of boot camp.

However, high-value items should be left behind. You can work to obtain your personal items from home at a later date.

References:

www.airforce.com

Packing Lists for other Military Branches

Basic Training Packing List for each Branch of the Military

Navy Boot Camp

Army Basic Training

Marine Corps Boot Camp

Rob V.
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Check out our Air Force Basic Training packing list, and find a free downloadable list of items you should bring to BMT. Also includes a list of items you should (but aren't required) to bring, as well as things you should definitely NOT bring.
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