Guard vs reserves

My husband is thinking of joining the guard or the reserves. It all boils down to which gives a better sign-up bonus. He's already got a degree and has no desire to go back to school, so that isn't a consideration. I can't seem to find easy answers to this on either website.

So which has better sign up bonuses?
Original Post
Frankly, I'm wary of recruiters. I get the feeling that they tell you what you want to hear, all the good stuff and none of the bad stuff. I just want straight talk, not someone selling something.

He's got a Bachelors in Management Information Systems, so I would expect him to do well in technical areas of testing. He got a 24 on his ACTs if that gives you any info.

We just want some extra financial security for our family... we just got married in May and he works way too hard for way too little. I'm in school and working; we're trying our hardest, but unfortunately working your hardest doesn't guarantee stability in today's economy.
You are ultimately going to have to speak to a recruiter. Mine was very honest and straightforward. The key is going in knowing what you want and having some knowledge of what the Army can do for you.

If you don't get a good feeling about a recruiter, go to another one.

We do have a few recruiters here that could give you a little more info on this than I can, but I did find this link about the Chaplain Corps. that you may find helpful: http://www.goarmy.com/chaplain/index.jsp
quote:
Originally posted by Daddy Warcrimes:
To the best of my knowledge, the Guard and Reserve operate on the same incentive program. The bonuses are mostly determined by MOS, and each component will have different varieties of MOSs in your area.


States often augment incentives for the Guard, so there may be a difference.
The programs are very similar. The Reserves have commands that can stretch across state boundries while the National Guard falls into 54 states and territories each with their own state command. Reserves fall directly under the Army while the National Guard falls under the Governor, then the Army. That is why National Guard are the ones that respond to natural disasters and such. Incentives can vary, plus some states offer tuition programs that are seperate from federal programs. These vary by state. Jobs available are going to be based on regional availability regardless of which option you take. A lot of it is how far are you willing to drive. I know our state provides hotel rooms for soldiers driving excessive distances. Talk to both, weigh the options and benefits, and make your decision. Never sign a contract unless it is what you want. Everything goes into writing. Nothing you sign matters until you sign your DD4/1 DD 4/2 as far as obligating you to service. goarmy.com and nationalguard.com can answer more questions for you. Good luck!
Hello from USAREC, I guess my skills can be put to better use than just dialing numbers on a phone all day.

The main difference between the two is that the reserves are a federal agency and the guard is state run. The guard can be put on state orders but that is usually only for deployments.

The big difference is if you ever plan to move anywhere besides the state that you are in right now. In the guard, it requires approval from the state command for you to do an inter-state transfer. With the reserves, all that is required is that you sign out of your unit and find a new one to accept you where you are going.

Always remember this also, the federal government does not pay the guards pay check or benefits. So if the state runs out of money in there budget to pay you, then you still have to drill but will not get paid and neither will you tution assistance or any other benefit.

As for bonuses, you are not really going to be getting anything as far as those go these days. All branches are already full and we are not having any problems filling our mission for the month with bodies to enlist. So dont go in there expecting a bonus in either office.

Hope this has been a help. Only 10 more months of pushing paper here in USAREC land!!!!!
quote:
Originally posted by ATC MAINTENANCE MAN:
How is that wrong INTEL? I recruit in the town that houses the Citidel. When SC ran out of government money, I had about 6 cadets in my office because the guard could not pay there TA or tution. I have seen this first hand. Are you active duty?


Did I mention anything about TA?
quote:
Originally posted by ATC MAINTENANCE MAN:
Hello from USAREC, I guess my skills can be put to better use than just dialing numbers on a phone all day.

The main difference between the two is that the reserves are a federal agency and the guard is state run. The guard can be put on state orders but that is usually only for deployments.

The big difference is if you ever plan to move anywhere besides the state that you are in right now. In the guard, it requires approval from the state command for you to do an inter-state transfer. With the reserves, all that is required is that you sign out of your unit and find a new one to accept you where you are going.

Always remember this also, the federal government does not pay the guards pay check or benefits. So if the state runs out of money in there budget to pay you, then you still have to drill but will not get paid and neither will you tution assistance or any other benefit.

As for bonuses, you are not really going to be getting anything as far as those go these days. All branches are already full and we are not having any problems filling our mission for the month with bodies to enlist. So dont go in there expecting a bonus in either office.

Hope this has been a help. Only 10 more months of pushing paper here in USAREC land!!!!!


Many portions of this are incorrect. You do need a release to transfer from one state to another, but there are dedicated positions called IST's who coordinate state transfers. They assist you with finding a unit and getting the paperwork taken care of. In 20 years I have never seen or heard of one being denied.

The pay comes out of money budgeted by DOD to DOA to NGB to the states. Drill pay is fenced at the begining of the year. States do not run out of money for drill and soldiers are closely monitored on how many unit training assemblies(UTAs) they attend. If someone exceded the 52 UTA cap there has been a serious breakdown on some level.

Many states have tuition waivers which, unlike the federal program, can not run out of money because no money changes hands ie waiver. These programs are included in state laws in some states and are more secure than any federal program.

Bonuses for the states are based on whether or not it is a priority MOS and if that state is over authorized end strength. This varies greatly by state but does not mean they are not available if you find the right MOS.

Deployments fall under title 10 orders. They are federal. State orders can be training orders, travel orders, or for airport security, disaster responce etc. The later are usually subsidized by federal dollars since states have the mission of responding to these.

Each program has its own pros and cons. Each program is different enough that someone from the other program will probably not be able to give you a completely accurate answer about it. Research and make an educated decision.

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