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United States Air Force
Airman & Family Readiness Center
502 W Van Matre Ave. Bldg 205
Suite 1 Bldg 205
Eglin AFB, FL 32542
Florida is a relatively high cost of living area (#26 out of 50 states in 2020) and has relatively low wages.
A major concern in NW Florida is HURRICANE SEASON (from June to November). Call ahead if you are arriving at Eglin and a hurricane is predicted to hit this area. Watch the Weather Channel (monitor weather conditions) and contact your sponsor as Eglin AFB may be evacuated and the surrounding roads will be congested with people leaving the area. The community surrounding Eglin offers white sand beaches and water sports in the surrounding bays and Gulf of Mexico. Riptides and strong undertow will challenge a strong and masterful swimmer. These conditions are extremely dangerous. Ensure that everyone in your party has had a safety briefing. Parents should brief all children on the dangers of riptides and rip currents before entering the waters surrounding Eglin. Children must be supervised at all times. Signs at the swimming areas may not be posted. It is dangerous to swim or play in water where there is no lifeguard. Make it a practice to use sunscreen (especially children) on the white sand beaches. The color of the sand intensifies and reflects the heat rays. Use gradual exposure so that your body will become accustomed to sunbathing. Most of the venomous snakes found in North America can be found in NW Florida. Be alert for snakes and alligators when you walk in wooded or marshy areas.
All numbers listed are in the 850 area code, except as indicated.
Defense Service Network (DSN) Dialing Instructions
The DSN is the provider of long-distance communications service for the Department of Defense (DoD). Every installation has a special DSN number and the numbers vary by world-wide location. In order to place a call using DSN, the caller must be using a military phone on an installation. Cell phones cannot dial DSN numbers. When dialing a DSN number from a United States installation to another United States installation, it is unnecessary to dial the DSN 312 area code. When dialing a DSN number to/from overseas locations, the DSN area code must be included.
The 96th Test Wing mission is to test and evaluate state-of-the-art weapon systems and cyber capabilities, provide quality installation and mission support, and serve as responsible stewards of our resources to deliver war-winning capabilities.
Modern-day Eglin evolved from an honorable past. Eglin began as the Valparaiso Bombing and Gunnery Base, established in 1935. On August 4, 1937, the base was redesignated Eglin Field in honor of Lt. Col. Frederick I. Eglin, who died in an aircraft crash. Today, Eglin hosts some 40 tenant units representing virtually every major command including our sister services, the 7th Special Forces Group, the U.S. Army Ranger Camp, and the U.S. Navy Explosive Ordnance Disposal School. Visit the Eglin homepage for more information.
Okaloosa County = 214, 439
Santa Rosa County = 189, 909
Eglin has approximately 20,000 + personnel and provides services for over 92,000.
Eglin AFB is located in Okaloosa County, in Northwest Florida, comprising over 720 square miles. This is a military-friendly area, retirement "mecca," and a major tourist attraction due to the white sandy beaches and emerald green waters. Okaloosa County is a relatively high cost of living area and has relatively low wages. Eglin is located 8 miles Northwest of Fort Walton Beach, 60 miles East of Pensacola and 65 miles West of Panama City.
Pensacola Regional Airport (PNS)
Pensacola has one passenger terminal consisting of 12 gates. Gates 9-12 are on the lower level and used for commuter flights.
Pensacola Regional (PNS) Airport, located approximately three miles northeast of Pensacola's central business district, serves the extreme western portion of the Florida Panhandle. It provides easy access to the area's numerous beaches, the National Museum of Naval Aviation and many other historical and natural attractions. PNS airport is serviced by six major airlines and their affiliated regional jet services offering nonstop flights to destinations such as Atlanta, Houston, Cincinnati, Minneapolis and Charlotte. The small terminal, which was remodeled in the ‘90s, consists of two levels: baggage claim and ticketing on the main level and the arrival and departure concourses on the second level. Your options are limited to Varona's Restaurant and Varona's News & Gift on the terminal's second level if you want to grab a bite to eat or something to read before your flight.
Directions to Eglin from Pensacola
Eglin AFB is located in Okaloosa County approx 60 miles East of Pensacola and 65 miles West of Panama City in the Northwest Area (called the Panhandle) of Florida.
From the Airport in Pensacola
Pensacola Airport is approximately 70 miles from Eglin AFB and Okaloosa Regional Airport is adjacent to the base. If you are driving from the Pensacola airport to Eglin AFB, follow the signs from the airport to I-10 East. Turn right on SR 85 at Crestview (exit 56), which leads to Niceville. Turn right on SR 20 (John Sims Parkway) until you reach the Eglin AFB East Gate.
Destin-Fort Walton Beach Regional Airport (VPS)
The Destin-Fort Walton Beach Regional Airport is the airport that serves Niceville and Fort Walton Beach, as well most of the greater Okaloosa-Walton county area. Airlines refer to the Okaloosa Regional Airport as Fort Walton Beach. So if you are traveling here, your destination is Fort Walton Beach, not Okaloosa Regional Airport. The FAA designation is VPS.
From the Destin-Fort Walton Beach Regional Airport to EglinIf you arrive at the Destin-Fort Walton Beach Regional Airport, exit the airport to the right on SR 85 until you reach SR 20 in Valparaiso, Turn right and follow it to the Eglin AFB East gate. Individuals who are driving should take I-10 to exit 56, go south on SR 85 until reach intersection of SR 85 and Hwy 20 in Niceville, turn right on Hwy 20 (John Sims Parkway) and continue until you reach the Eglin East Gate.
The airport is located just outside of Niceville on State Road 85, less than a 15-minute drive from the heart of Niceville. It is located on property owned by Eglin Air Force Base and uses Eglin's runways. The airport currently serves over 520,000 passengers each year with direct service to Atlanta, Chicago, Cincinnati, Memphis, Orlando, and Tampa. The street address of the airport is 1701 State Road 85 North, Eglin AFB, FL 32542. The telephone number is 850-651-7160. The Destin-Fort Walton Beach Regional Airport offers four car rental agencies on-site and one that serves the airport off-site.
Driving from the Northeast/Southwest
Exit 56 (Crestview) if you are using Interstate 10. Turn right if you are coming from the southwest and left if you are coming from the northeast on to Hwy 85 South approx 14 miles to Hwy 123. Turn to the right on to Hwy 123 and follow it until it dead ends into Hwy 85. Make a right and go to the first light (Lewis Turner Blvd). At the light, turn left and continue on that route for approx 1/2 mile. Turn left at the next light into the West Gate area of Eglin.
Driving from Hwy 98
If you are driving on Hwy 98, Eglin AFB is approx. 7miles NW of Fort Walton Beach, 60 miles E of Pensacola and 65 miles W of Panama City.
Driving from the North
When traveling from the north, after entering Florida look for Hwy 85 to Crestview. After you enter Crestview, continue to follow Hwy 85. You will go under Interstate 10 but continue on Hwy 85 for approx 14 miles until you see the sign that says Fort Walton Beach to the right (Hwy 123). Follow Hwy 123 until it dead ends. Make a right and go to the first light which will be Lewis Turner Blvd. Turn left and continue for approx 1/2 miles. Turn left at the next light to enter the Eglin West Gate.
From the Bus Station at US-98 W/ Miracle Strip Parkway Fort Walton Beach, Eglin is located about 9.1 miles north of the bus station.
Base/public transportation on Eglin is limited. Look for bus stops for the Base Shuttle.
Reservations can be made in advance by contacting Eglin Inns at 850-882-8761 or DSN 312-872-8761. You may also pre-register for housing by calling the Housing Office at 850-882-4533 or DSN 312-872-4533. Eglin has limited TLF quarters and you may be sent off base during the busy summer moving season. Personnel are highly encouraged to call in advance and make a reservation.