Pay and financial benefits for service categories 6-7

Salary

Australian Defence Force (ADF) members receive their pay every fortnight, and it includes their salary and any allowances they may be eligible for. Salaries increase over time. For some roles, there is potential for increases based on period of service, training, operational postings or promotion. Additional pay or bonuses are offered for holding specialist skills, competencies or working on certain capabilities.

Superannuation

Defence supports members' future with generous contributions to their superannuation. For those who joined on or after 1 July 2016, Defence contributes 16.4% superannuation, well above the national mandate of 11%. Members can elect to join the default military fund, ADF Super, or another superannuation fund of their choice.

For those who joined before that date, they may be part of the Military Superannuation and Benefits Scheme (MSBS) or the Defence Force Retirement and Death Benefits (DFRDB). More information on these superannuation funds can be found in the Pay and Conditions Manual.

Higher duties allowance

Defence recognises when members are directed to work above their rank or level by paying a ​higher duties allowance.

Health benefits

Members' and their families' health is a priority. Defence provides members with free medical and dental services including access to allied health specialists, rehabilitation, mental health and chaplaincy services. Members' families are provided with benefits towards eligible services through the ADF Family Health Program. From 1 July 2023 the allowance has been doubled and additional services are available for reimbursement.

Leave entitlements

From 1 July 2023 members are entitled to 5 additional recreation leave days per year, taking the total to 25 days per year to enjoy however they like. From mid-2024, they will also be able to take up to 10 days purchased leave before they've paid for it and if they are a serving couple they may apply to transfer their recreation leave to their serving partner.

Remote location leave travel

Working in a remote location can make things a little more difficult, so Defence provides access to remote location leave travel. It allows members to take a break from living in a remote location and use this time for shopping, access to health care, see family or other things they may be missing while living remotely.

Recreation leave travel

Defence may pay recreation leave travel for members to travel within Australia to visit family or the nearest capital city. Members may be able to access one return trip, including door-to-door travel, each financial year, or alternatively look at options to defer or transfer their benefit depending on their family categorisation.

Reunion travel

Spending time with loved ones is important. Reunion travel provides members with travel benefits to reunite with family if they are posted away from them for longer than 2 months.

Compassionate travel

Compassionate travel may be made available to travel for the death, serious illness or very serious illness of a recognised family member. In some cases spouse or partner travel may also be approved. 

Salary packaging

Salary packaging allows members to pay for things with their pre-tax salary. Members can buy a new car or laptop, or top-up their super using salary packaging, meaning they will pay less tax on their income.

Relocation

Defence funds members' relocation for a new position in Australia or long-term posting overseas.

Defence helps with the move by covering the cost of removals and providing allowances that acknowledge the impact a removal has on members and their families.

Additional support is available to help with an upcoming move. This includes financial information through the ADF Financial Services Consumer Centre, as well as a range of fact sheets and other information to help making moving just a little bit easier for members and families. There are additional resources available to support long-term overseas postings, as conditions of service may differ.

Housing

Defence offers a range of housing support options for members and their families. Defence subsidises members' housing costs including options for service residences through:

Defence can help members buy their home through the Home Purchase Assistance Scheme. This provides a one-off payment of $16,949 (before tax) to help members buy a home in their posting location. If members need assistance with selling and purchasing a new home due to a new posting, the Home Purchase or Sale Expenses Allowance may reimburse them for some of the costs involved with selling and buying a home.

Defence can provide a subsidy to help members pay their home loan through the Defence Home Ownership Assistance Scheme. This helps the members and their families to own a home by paying a monthly subsidy on their home loan interest. To access the scheme members must meet a minimum qualifying service period of 2 years, or 4 years as a reservist. 

Transition support

Defence funds career transition training, coaching and financial advice in preparation for civilian life. Members can also apply to have their military skills recognised through a national qualification before transitioning to civilian employment.

Superannuation entitlements on discharge are dependent on individual circumstances and members will need to seek financial advice to discuss their situation.

Transition and your Super (PDF, 375.65 KB)

Medical transition and your Super (PDF, 529.15 KB)

Training and development

Defence invests in members' potential by providing funding towards a huge range of personal and professional development opportunities. Further information can be found on the career and personal development page.