United States Air Force - O-2 First Lieutenant
Yearly Base Pay
$41,958 - $58,068
Monthly Base Pay
$3,496.50 - $4,839.00
Hourly Base Pay *
$21.85 - $30.24
Air Force First Lieutenant - Rank Details
First Lieutenant (1st L)
|Service||United States Air Force|
|Address||Lieutenant (last name)|
What are a First Lieutenant's Responsibilities?
A first lieutenant in the U.S. Air Force is the rank bestowed upon newly promoted second lieutenants. Certain career fields may also commission their officers as first lieutenants. It is the second lowest officer rank and is equivalent to the rank of lieutenant (junior grade) in the Navy and Coast Guard. Due to the technical nature of the Air Force, the duties and responsibilities of a first lieutenant greatly vary by career field.
Most first lieutenants in non-rated (non-flying) or intelligence career fields will be supervising flights as the flight commander or deputy commander. Flight sizes vary by career field but can be as large as a hundred enlisted airmen. Typical career fields were a second lieutenant might find him or herself as the flight commander includes personnel, maintenance, or security forces. These first lieutenants may also work on positions on the squadron, group, and rarely, the wing level as well. First lieutenants are expected to also mentor and develop a second lieutenant in their flight.
First lieutenants selected to undergo rated training to become either a pilot, combat systems officers, remotely pilots aircraft officers, or air battle managers will spend some time finishing training. They are more or less full-time students with no command responsibilities until after their training. Students in training will also find themselves with no enlisted airmen to supervise. Other career fields that have training may find themselves in similar situations. This includes intelligence, cyber operations, and special investigations. Upon completion of training, these first lieutenants will finally have the opportunity to lead enlisted airmen.
First lieutenants are considered company grade officers (CGO). For all intents and purposes, second lieutenants and first lieutenants in the Air Force are treated very similarly. The first lieutenant is just a more experienced lieutenant.
What is a First Lieutenant's Paygrade?
A First Lieutenant is considered a Commissioned Officer, with a paygrade of O-2. The civilian equivalents of this military rank are roughly GS-8, GS-9 under the federal government's General Schedule payscale.
On this page you can learn more about a First Lieutenant's payscale, the process of becoming a First Lieutenant, and the history of the rank in the United States Air Force.
Air Force First Lieutenant Pay Calculator
Starting pay for a First Lieutenant is $3,496.50 per month, with raises for experience resulting in a maximum base pay of $4,839.00 per month. You can use the simple calculator below to see basic and drill pay for a First Lieutenant, or visit our Air Force pay calculator for a more detailed salary estimate.
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years of experience.
Use the slider below to calculate the basic pay and drill pay for an O-2 First Lieutenant at varying years in his or her military career.
2 or less years
Over 40 years
Equivalent Ranks to an Air Force First Lieutenant
A First Lieutenant is a Commissioned Officer, with a military paygrade of O-2. The civilian equivalents of this military rank are roughly GS-8, GS-9 under the federal government's General Schedule payscale.
The table below lists the equivalent ranks of an Air Force First Lieutenant, and their insignia, in the other four branches of the United States' Armed Services.