Do you get to write letters in basic training? Yes you do, but tips for writing letters in basic training are actually needed. It’s not as easy as you’d think to send letters.
So will your family be telling you “be sure to write” as you’re leaving for the start of your military career? Here is what you need to know for writing letters in basic training.
Receiving The Air Force Basic Training Mailing Address
After getting off the bus and going through the long grueling in-processing period you will receive your basic training flight address within the first day or two at Lackland AFB. Shortly after that you’re given the opportunity to tell your family you are OK and give them your address with the Lackland AFB address format. The mailing address for Air Force basic training is flight specific, not every person in basic training has the same address.
While sitting on the floor in the day room with the rest of your basic training flight all of your cell phones will be passed back. You are given 30 seconds (yes I said that correctly, 30 seconds) to call your family telling them your mailing address for the duration of basic.
It will get loud in the day room fast with so many people trying to talk over each other. To the point that I didn’t even call my family so I could start getting mail. I sat there on the hard floor just looking at everyone else eagerly trying to spit out the address before the time was up. I waited to tell my family till the end of the week when we got our first 5 minute phone call. So whether you tell family during the 30 second call or your first weekly 5 minute call is up to you, just expect it to be loud if you go for the 30 seconds.
How Often Can You Write Letters In Air Force Basic Training?
You’ll have time to write letters halfway though basic training but anytime before that is gonna be a challenge. During the first few weeks of training your instructor will typically not leave the dorm bays. They even sleep there at night in their office. Slowly as the weeks go by instructors begin to relax a bit. They may even only show up half the day on Sunday, or if your lucky not show up at all that day. So weekly on Sunday’s you’ll begin to notice some free time were you can write letters to loved ones without the instructors breathing down your neck.
Just a word of warning, I still wouldn’t want to get caught with any letters you’re in the middle of writing. Want to know how instructors will find your letters? Read the tip about it here in a previous posts “stay connected by letters” section.
How To Mail Air Force Basic Training Letters
Instructors do not mail out letters so don’t ask them to. Asking will only raise more questions from your instructor about you writing letters, which could lead to you doing push-ups as a result. So you might be thinking “well how am I gonna mail things out then?“
It should go without saying that there are not many escapes from basic training, expect for church on Sundays. Even if you are not religious it’s still to good idea to go to church and just get away from the pressures and confinement of BMT.
During the first few weeks Instructors will march large flights of trainees down to church and along the way they pass a mail box or two. (Are you catching on yet?) Those mailboxes on the way to church are gonna be the only way to mail out letters you write. Remember earlier when I said the instructors begin to not come in on Sundays after a while? There is your change, half way through basic training you are able to march together in SMU’s (small marching unit) without the instructor and go to church. Take a brief stop at the mail box along on the way.
Not everyone will go to church or maybe someone got in trouble and the instructor made them stay in the dorm bays on Sunday. Either way people will ask you to mail out letters for them while on your way to church. It’s just something that typically happens so just be aware of it.
It’s important to know that you should bring stamps with you to basic training. There isn’t anywhere on base you will be able to buy them. If you forget to pack some then ask you bunk mates to use one or have your family/friends send you some inside a letter. Along those lines you can either bring envelopes with your stamps or plan to buy a stationary set in the BX (base exchange) during your time spent getting necessary supplies. You’ll have a few opportunities to march to the BX for supplies over the duration of basic training.
If all else fails and you’re unable to write letters for any reason, you still have weekly phone calls. So whether it’s by letter or phone, there’s still a way to keep in touch.
Here is a common question asked most people want to know. When do you get your phone back after basic training? You get your phone back after graduation, during your last few days at basic training when your able to go off base.
To Wrap It Up
With these few tips you are now prepared to write letters and know how to actually mail them out. Your family/significant other will be happy to discover your letter sitting in the mail box. Knowing when to write letters and mail them is only half the battle though. It still doesn’t hurt to read the linked post above to know how instructors find and confiscate partially written letters.
Air Force Veteran
Corey is an Air Force veteran and the lead writer at Basic to Blues. He refueled fighter jets as a young airman and deployed twice to the Middle East. Now Corey can be found hiking in the Pacific Northwest.
Who the hell… POL!