When you consider enlisting in the military, you can choose from a number of different jobs. Some of the jobs and MOS (military occupational specialties) have certain types of military enlistment bonuses. An incentive is different than what is considered a regular military benefit; it’s a one-time offer that an enlisted person collects to help attract people to a specific job specialty. One of the things about an incentive is that it is not open to everyone, but only to those that qualify, by choosing a certain job, or rating. Some of the jobs in the military are in such high demand and understaffed to the point that the military offers incentives to lure qualified candidates. Financial rewards and cash rewards are available for those that choose a high demand job.
Each of the incentives that the military offers for different jobs are subject to change, the incentives are based on the needs of the particular service, the circumstances, and the qualifications needed to apply. To be qualified for a particular incentive, it has to be something you can do, training you already have, or something you qualify for naturally, such as being a native speaker in a foreign language other than English. Such an incentive has to be spelled our in writing on your enlistment contract. Enlistment bonuses are not for everyone, not everyone qualifies for an enlistment bonus. It is a wise idea for you to investigate the different types of bonuses and incentives that are offered, to make sure that if you are qualified for an incentive that you can apply for it.
There are other military benefits besides incentives such as tuition assistance, military medical benefits, base pay and allotments, and even the Montgomery GI bill. During the last year or two, Congress has increased the amount of enlistment incentive bonuses that are allowed by law to a maximum of $40,000 dollars per person. At the current time, the United States Army is the only Service that offers the highest amount, the other services for the most part max out at $20,000 dollars.
Enlistment bonuses and incentives are designed at the whim of each of the different services. They are designed to aid the services, but they can sometimes also aid the individual prospective Servicemembers.