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grizwald57

Which branch is the best?

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Hello all, 

I've been floating around the forums for a couple weeks now and finally have a question that I can't seem to find very good answers to. Which branch would be the best to apply for and for what reasons? I personally am talking to a Navy Officer recruiter right now and about to begin the application process for a pilot slot, but now I'm having cold feet on whether the Navy would be the best branch to go into. The main qualm I think I have now is the realization I could be spending months at sea, whereas I could possibly join the Air Force or even National Guard and have a closer gig. Then again I do want something more serious than an ANG job (not to berate ANG, but I'd assume Navy just has a higher responsibility). 

So hopefully in me asking this question it helps many other people wondering what the best branch is and why. What's everyone's opinions on all the different branches (not just for becoming a pilot but in general, the general feel of the branches, the seriousness, the missions, culture, people, etc...). What are the differences between these branches?

- Army

- Marines

- Air Force

- Navy

- Air National Guard 

 

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ANG is absolutely serious - lots of ANG bros deployed every day of the year, flying TDY, etc.  Whatever you've heard, it's probably completely wrong.

Navy - Never have been it, but have worked with them a good amount.  Their flying career is generally not as good as an AF flying career (e.g. Navy is faster to kick guys to non-flying jobs for "career progression"...at least from what I've seen with multiple friends in fighters, heavies, and helos).  Believe it or not, I think the Navy is worse with queep than the AF.  They seem to value career progression/grooming even more than the AF.  QOL factor of living on a boat for 6-9 months, spending a lot of time flying admin which eats into tactical training, etc.  Doesn't mean you can't have an awesome time doing it, but they're legitimate considerations.  Hopefully one of the ex-Navy guys on here can give you a better comparison.

Army - Similar comments as Navy, but even worse.  You're a company commander as a Capt, good bye to much flying.  Maj?  Yeah, you're flying days are pretty much over.  Army is the master of queep...unbelievable.  If you want to go Army and kill shit, go enlisted.

Overall, your best flying as an officer is generally AF.  As a general statement, you'll spend more of your career flying and also have greater options for aircraft/mission types and basing location options that are in decent places (subjective).  Seems like my Navy friends live west or east coast for most of their career, with maybe an assignment at China Lake (no thanks).  If you love San Diego or VA Beach, maybe that's a huge positive for you.  The Army has 90% shitty bases.

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12 hours ago, grizwald57 said:

@brabus

Thanks for the info man, I'm not entirely opposed to the Air Force, but I've just heard some bad stuff about them is all. From alot of the posts on here and from what I've generally heard from people I know, the AF is a great branch and gets treated very well (moreso than any other branch; best barracks/living space, best food, best life in general). But I've also heard the AF is just weak compared to the other branches; I've heard stuff about sexual harassment trainings (which is a huge red flag to me, makes me worried what other kind of nonsense they might make me go through like exclusivity or diversity stuff), weird uniforms that make no sense, BS feel good activities, the branch seeming to lack a sense of being mission focused, etc...

That last point is a big one for me. Coming from the civilian life, having worked now for several different big companies for a couple years in different fields, the one thing I'm just sick of is working around unmotivated people, seeming to lack a sense of wanting to accomplish something or to do a great job ("being excellent in all they do"). For me that's a huge part of what I'm looking for in joining the military is to work around like minded people like that. And stuff I've heard about with the Air Force just makes me cautious I guess is the best word. 

You just described the negative aspects that exist in EVERY military branch.  A lot of the bullshit we hate is DOD mandated, i.e. every part of the DOD is held hostage to SAPR training, cyber awareness CBTs, etc.  Finance sucks everywhere, every branch has non-mission focused support people who will piss you off with their apathy and daily failure to be held to a reasonable standard.  Our AF bitch/gripes/complaints are not special to the AF, they exist in every branch.  I highly recommend you don't make a career decision on shit you've heard/read on the internet, and certainly don't make one that revolves around avoiding bullshit (every large organization has it).  Make a career decision based on what you want to do, mission, etc, not on trivial bullshit and your perception of how bad or not it is.

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Coast Guard. ANG. DMV. Wal-Mart greeter. AD AF.

In that order. You’re welcome.


Sent from my iPhone using Baseops Network mobile app

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@brabus

Thanks for the info man, I'm not entirely opposed to the Air Force, but I've just heard some bad stuff about them is all. From alot of the posts on here and from what I've generally heard from people I know, the AF is a great branch and gets treated very well (moreso than any other branch; best barracks/living space, best food, best life in general). But I've also heard the AF is just weak compared to the other branches; I've heard stuff about sexual harassment trainings (which is a huge red flag to me, makes me worried what other kind of nonsense they might make me go through like exclusivity or diversity stuff), weird uniforms that make no sense, BS feel good activities, the branch seeming to lack a sense of being mission focused, etc...

That last point is a big one for me. Coming from the civilian life, having worked now for several different big companies for a couple years in different fields, the one thing I'm just sick of is working around unmotivated people, seeming to lack a sense of wanting to accomplish something or to do a great job ("being excellent in all they do"). For me that's a huge part of what I'm looking for in joining the military is to work around like minded people like that. And stuff I've heard about with the Air Force just makes me cautious I guess is the best word. 

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Anyone calling “troll” yet? Someone with these questions hasn’t passed high school history or read a newspaper in the past 10 years. An electronic subscription would do the trick too.

Bottom line is if you want to be at the leading edge of global events and tell stories of the 6 to 9 wars you fought in with some of the most intelligent and motivated combat aviators in the world, you join the AF.

If you want stories about your ports of call you join the Navy.

If you want stories about your two year-long deployments to the same country you join the Army.

If you want stories like the Army, but wetter and dirtier, join the Marines.

It’s not rocket science, it’s what we do.

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