Military base access for civilians and how to receive guests (2023)


Are you a soldier looking to host family or friends in your base, or a civilian trying to figure out how the heck you can get to the base? Regardless of your reasons for researching how to gain civilian access to military bases, we have the answers.

Accessing military bases for civilians, whether short-term or long-term, can seem like a confusing and daunting task. No worries! Our job is to provide you with the information you need to participate with confidence.

If you are a current Soldier or spouse living on a base you can skip to this section.Here.

If you are a civilian, read on! Your information comes first.

Military base access for civilians and how to receive guests (1)

Can I visit a military base?

The short answer is yes!

Most people can easily visit a military base. It's not like visiting grandma where you can stop and go inside. You have to bring everything with yourequired Documentsand be prepared to undergo a background check.

Usually you also need a sponsor. However, this is not a problem when visiting a service member.

Note that the requirements to visit a military base may vary depending on which base you want to access, why you're asking for access, and how long you need access for.

Military base access for civilians and how to receive guests (2)

How to get a military base pass

The first step in getting to the bottom of this is to do your due diligence. Access to a base isn't a last-minute decision you have to make on a random Sunday stroll on your way home from the mall.

Most bases make things easier by providing a dedicated website or page for your visitor center. always gohere firstand look for installation-specific operational information. You can always call the general number listed in the phone book on our website to get in touch with someone from the Visitor Center.

They will tell you how to get a military base pass for their facility and how to get to the base.

If you have a sponsor, travel with us

Many bases require military or non-military family members to have a sponsor to enter the base. In this case, the sponsor is (who must be a service member) must fill out a sponsorship form.

If you are based in your sponsor's car, all you need is your driver's license or something elsevalid photo IDgo through the door. keep this in mindsomeBases allow the service member to sponsor only one guest in their vehicle at a time. Others simply limit the number to the number of seats in their vehicle. Check with the Visitor Center to see if your base has restrictions.

Military base access for civilians and how to receive guests (3)

If you visit the base with your own vehicle

You need more documentsif you want to drive to the base in your own vehicle than if you are traveling with a service member. Your sponsor can pre-order a basic pass for you and meet you at the gate to facilitate the process. Once you have validated your base pass, you can visit the base on any of the approved dates listed on your pass. The visitor center can tell you exactly where to go, how to get there, and what documents to bring with you.

If you do not have the pass when you visit the base, your sponsor must accompany you to the visitor center. Here you can apply for an access card, register your vehicle and make all other arrangements with the base for future visits to the base.

If you don't have a sponsor

If you do not have a sponsor requesting a basic pass for you, you will still be required to present valid ID when you stop at the gate. So you will needGo to the visitor center immediately. You can usually find your base's visitor center near the front door.

In general, before you stop exactly at the door in question, you should have the following on hand:

  • valid ID
  • Vehicle registration (to be presented at the visitor center for base vehicle registration)
  • Proof of insurance (must be presented at the visitor center for base vehicle registration)


Some people don't have access to military bases. If you or your sponsor applies for a Basic Pass on your behalf and is denied, this is known as a suspension. It can happen for several of the following he canGet denied access to a database:

  • If you have been forcibly removed from a military basein the past and asked not to return.
  • If you are a convicted felon who is currently on probation.
  • Attempting to enter a base without proper authorization.
  • If you have a history of gang membership.
  • If you are a registered sex offender.
  • If you have been denied entry to another US military base.

Military base access for civilians and how to receive guests (4)


In 2005, Congress passed theLEY REAL ID, which will come into force in October 2021. For civilians, this means stricter requirements for what can be presented as valid ID when attempting to gain access to a military base. According to the REAL ID Act, to allow access to a military base after October 2021, your ID must meet the following rules:

  • The ID card must contain your full legal name.
  • The ID must contain your date of birth.
  • The ID must contain your gender.
  • The ID must have an identifiable number (e.g. driver's license number).
  • The ID must contain a photo of you.
  • The ID card must show your main place of residence.
  • The ID card must contain your signature.
  • The ID card must have “physical security features designed to prevent the document from being tampered with, forged or reproduced for fraudulent purposes”.
  • The marking must be machine-readable.

As of fall 2020, all 50 states are now compliant with the REAL ID Act regarding driver's licenses and other government-issued identification, such as passports.

If you're unsure whether your ID is compatible or not, there's a simple offer (for driver's licenses, at least). If you see a gold symbol (examples are a circle, a rectangle and even a bear) with a star shape in your license, it means your ID is compatible with REAL ID. Non-compliant IDs will also typically have a notice such as the phrase "NOT FOR FEDERAL PURPOSE."

If you think your ID card doesn't meet the requirements, contact your DMV for an updated version that does meet the requirements.

Military base access for civilians and how to receive guests (5)

Accommodation where you live on the base

If you've been looking forward to having guests at your base, you may have wondered, "Can civilians enter military bases?" Yes, you can!

While we all know that the military throws the best parties, from time to time you may wish to invite non-military members to visit. If that's the case, there's usually a strict set of protocols you both have to follow in order to gain civilian access to the military base.

1. Fill out a sponsorship form for them and request a basic access pass.

  • That's ithe canThis includes collecting information from them, such as B. Date of birth, driver's license number, place of birth and social security number.
  • You must fill out a sponsorship form and apply for a passevery single personYou want to invite the base.

2. Wait for approval.

  • Don't assume that just because you've applied for a passport, you'll be admitted. If they attempt to trespass on the base, they can be expelled.

3. Share the basic access pass with them.

  • Each person must have their own passport.

4. Greet your guests at the door.

These steps vary from installation to installation. There may be specific doors your guests must enter through and additional steps may be required to gain access. If this is the case, make sure they are informed before heading to the base. Give them detailed directions to the roads on the base and make sure they have all the necessary documentation (valid ID, vehicle insurance and vehicle registration) before attempting to gain access to the military base.

Looking for things to do at home while having fun on base?Check out our list of things to do at your basecommunity area. Or if you just want to see yourself from the inside, visit our trend blog21 Best Military Movies To Watch Right Now (2021 Edition).


Now that you know how to host or visit someone at a military base, you're free to go home! Don't let the rules, regulations and steps stop you from having fun on the base. We know they can feel overwhelming at first. However, after visiting the base for the second or third time, or gaining access to the military base for the civilians you wish to host, you will forget the fear you had before! After all, these rules are created to protect military personnel who live and work at their local facility.

Are you going to a party on the base? host one? Let us know by sharing photos and clipsFacebook by MyBaseGuidethe label@mibaseguideon Instagram or@mibaseguidea twitter.

The appearance of visual information from the United States Department of Defense (DoD) does not imply or constitute DoD endorsement.


Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Roderick King

Last Updated: 23/10/2023

Views: 6386

Rating: 4 / 5 (71 voted)

Reviews: 86% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Roderick King

Birthday: 1997-10-09

Address: 3782 Madge Knoll, East Dudley, MA 63913

Phone: +2521695290067

Job: Customer Sales Coordinator

Hobby: Gunsmithing, Embroidery, Parkour, Kitesurfing, Rock climbing, Sand art, Beekeeping

Introduction: My name is Roderick King, I am a cute, splendid, excited, perfect, gentle, funny, vivacious person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.