2018 BAS (Basic Allowance for Subsistence) rates

The Basic Allowance for Subsistence (BAS) is currently proposed at 3.4.%. The 3.4% increase would be effective on January 1, 2018, if approved by the FY2018 National Defense Authorization Act. Typically Congress and the President agree on a final version and sign into law in December. If enacted, the BAS increase would go into effect on January 1, 2018.

Basic Allowance for Subsistence (BAS) is used to pay for food for Enlisted Soldiers and Officers. Beginning on January 1 2002, all enlisted members were given full BAS, but pay for their meals (including those provided by the government) such as through a meal card management system.

BAS is calculated based on the current cost of food in the United States as recorded by the Department of Agriculture. Just as Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) correlates with the overall cost of living in a given zip code, BAS correlates with the cost of food in the given zip code. BAS, however, is not affected by the presence or absence of dependents, whereas BAH is a higher figure for service members with dependents.

BAS is not intended to cover all food-related expenses, but rather to aid in these expenses. The additional monthly stipend that service members can receive while overseas or when stationed in costly areas, known as Cost of Living Allowance (COLA), will not be affected by the proposed BAS rate.

Year Proposed Increase Actual Increase Enlisted Rate Officer Rate
2018 3.40% TBD $380.81 $262.25
2017 3.40% 0% $368.29 $253.63
2016 3.40% 0.1% $368.29 $253.63
2015 3.40% 2.90% $367.92 $253.38
2014 3.40% 1.48% $357.55 $246.24
2013 3.40% 1.09% $352.27 $242.60
2012 3.40% 7.20% $348.44 $239.96
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