Hurlburt Field Air Force Base Guide
Hurlburt Field specializes in Air Force operations that support worldwide missions with facilities that help to plan, strike and survey. The site has almost 9,000 military employees and over 4,000 civilian employees.
Hurlburt Field is located in Okaloosa County, home to over 200,000 residents. Hurlburt Field has pleasant weather almost all year round as part of the Florida Panhandle’s Emerald Coast and is within a short distance from Destin, Fort Walton Beach, Shalimar, Crestview, and Niceville.
Learn more about Hurlburt Field, including important base contact numbers, information on base housing, education, and the surrounding area below.
Hurlburt Field History
Founded in 1961 as the Home of the Air Commandos, the site was named after First Lieutenant Donald Wilson Hurlburt, who died after an aircraft accident in 1943 on site. The site, referred to as Eglin Auxiliary Field Number 9, has specialized in special rescue operation training for notable units and missions, including the Son Tay Raid in Vietnam in 1970.
Hurlburt Field is now home to a wing of 26 squadrons which can be enacted immediately wherever needed all over the world. Today, the 1 Special Operations Wing, or SOW, utilizes Hurlburt Field to plan intelligence and surveillance missions.
Hurlburt Field is found in the sunny center of Florida’s Emerald Coast in the Florida Panhandle. It is half an hour from the city of Pensacola and nearby popular tourist and beach areas. Most visitors to the area enjoy the sand and the sun most of the year and can be found outdoors enjoying the breeze. Nearby attractions include but are not limited to:
- Fort Walton Beach
- Santa Rosa Island
- Pensacola Beach
- Okaloosa Island
- Miramar Beach
- Florida Caverns State Park
Mission and Units
Hurlburt Field’s purpose is to facilitate Air Force special operations in the preparation and training for essential missions all over the world.
1 Special Operations Wing, or SOW, utilizes Hurlburt Field to plan intelligence and surveillance missions as well as reconnaissance and strategically work through the logistics of posturing and striking. The 1 SOW is a combination of 26 active squadrons, including the following:
- 1st Special Operations Support Squadron
- 4th Special Operations Squadron, AC-130J Ghostrider Gunship
- 8th Special Operations Squadron, CV-22 Osprey
- 11th Special Operations Intelligence Squadron
- 15th Special Operations Squadron, MC-130H Combat Talon II
- 34th Special Operations Squadron, U-28A
- 65th Special Operations Squadron, MQ-9 Reaper
- 73rd Special Operations Squadron, AC-130J Ghostrider Gunship
- 319th Special Operations Squadron, U-28A
- 1st Special Operations Aircraft Maintenance Squadron
- 1st Special Operations Maintenance Squadron
- 801st Special Operations Aircraft Maintenance Squadron
- 901st Special Operations Aircraft Maintenance Squadron
- 1st Special Operations Civil Engineer Squadron
- 1st Special Operations Communications Squadron
- 1st Special Operations Contracting Squadron
- 1st Special Operations Logistics Readiness Squadron
- 1st Special Operations Force Support Squadron
- 1st Special Operations Security Forces Squadron
- 1st Special Operations Healthcare Operations Squadron
- 1st Special Operations Medical Readiness Squadron
- 1st Special Operations Medical Support Squadron
- 1st Special Operations Air Operations Squadron
- 1st Special Operations Comptroller Squadron
In-Processing and Check-In
Before arriving at Hurlburt Field, request an appointment with the Welcome Center through your sponsor, who should be aware of your upcoming arrival.
Make sure to bring copies of your orders and amendments, a Recruiter’s Assistance MFR if available, and receipts for expenses from travel and temporary lodging. If you had to look for temporary lodging off-base, bring the Non-Availability Letter with you. Moving forward, you must show proof of your current address local to the area, and any information about your new assignment.
Hurlburt Field Child Care
The Child Development Center at Hurlburt Field offers care for children from six weeks of age through five years old including full-time and part-time, as well as hourly care. School-aged children are eligible for active programs that include instruction in leadership and the arts.
If looking for options outside the CDC, children from infancy until 12 are eligible for private home care but will find availability less easily due to cut offs for staff-to-child ratio. Some family home child facilities have tuition assistance. For more options for funding, inquire about the pilot program, The Child Care in Your Home program to see if your family is eligible for help to cover the financial costs of child care in these facilities.
All family housing at Hurlburt Field is privatized through Mayroad, who cares for the maintenance and management of the housing community. Advance notice is key to applying and securing housing immediately upon arrival.
The local housing community has amenities for all including use of the playgrounds, recreational vehicle parking, exercise tracks, splash fountain, marina, and access to a boat ramp. Rent will include utility expenses but not insurance. Renters and property insurance is strongly recommended for all residents of the community.
Hurlburt PCS and TDY Lodging
The local temporary lodging facility at Hurlburt Field is the Commando Inn. The facility is open to those new to the area and those incoming on official business. Reservations must be made in advance. In the event of a no vacancy situation, the Commando Inn should provide a non-availability certificate or number.
Hurlburt Field Transportation
The nearest airports to Hurlburt Field include Destin-Fort Walton Beach Airport and Pensacola Airport. From the former, use Highway 85 south until you reach Highway 98. From Pensacola Airport, use I-10 to Highway 98 until arriving at the main gate.
For those driving into the area, the directions will be similar.
Take Interstate 10 to Highway 85, leading to Highway 98 toward Pensacola and follow signs to the main gate. There are not many transportation options on base. Those who are riding the bus toward the facility will need to make arrangements for a taxi when closer. Base taxis are not for public use and will be used for official business.
Vehicle Registration And Driver’s License
To lawfully and legally drive your vehicle in Florida, you must have proof of liability insurance and a valid driver’s license. Use a hands-free device to ensure safety and avoid fines. Children under three must be in safety seats and seated in the back of the vehicle. In addition, motorcycle drivers must also wear proper safety equipment including a helmet.
To get a Florida driver’s license, gather and bring an official identification card as well as a secondary form of identification. Valid forms include a birth certificate if born in the United States, a U.S. passport, or official immigration documents and an official driver’s license from the prior state of residence. Fees for registering vehicles and obtaining a Florida license will apply.
114 Howie Walters Road, Bldg 91013
Hurlburt Field AFB, FL32544
The commissary at Hurlburt Field provides standard food and daily supplies as well as survival supplies including pet food, first aid kits and water.
To add to the basics, the commissary offers specialty items, including pre-made sandwiches or sandwiches made to order at the deli. With 24 hour notice, customized produce or meat packages are available as well as fruit baskets, cakes and even sushi trays made fresh daily. When purchasing, a military ID will be necessary.
Hurlburt Field has no schools within the facility. Families of service members at Hurlburt Field usually live in Okaloosa County or Santa Rosa County and attend the local schools of those districts.
Okaloosa County residents will typically attend Mary Esther or Florosa for elementary education, followed by Max Bruner Middle and graduate from Fort Walton Beach High School. Those who live in Santa Rosa County can attend Holley-Navarre Primary, Holley-Navarre Intermediate, Holley-Navarre Middle, West Navarre Primary, West Navarre Intermediate, Woodlawn Beach Middle, and Navarre High School.
To register students for school, parents or guardians will need to show the child’s proof of age, usually with an official birth certificate, the immunization record, and proof of medical exam within the last calendar year. They should also provide official proof of address.
For those who seek other schooling options, the county of residence can give information regarding homeschool options. School Liaisons tied to the base can provide listings for local private school options for students, however private school tuition will likely need to be paid by the parents and families of the student.
Colleges and Universities
For those interested in furthering their education and training, the Air Force Education Service can direct service members to means to increase their opportunities both personally and professionally that are cost-efficient.
Bridging from basic college courses to advanced degree plans, many options are available that can be arranged with tuition assistance through the Hurlburt Education Center. During standard business hours, the Hurlburt Education Center can be reached at (850) 884-6724.
Programs may be offered through the Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, University of Arkansas, Northwest Florida State College and the University of Oklahoma. Local schools that may be inquired about but are not represented at the Hurlburt Education Center include Pensacola State College, Okaloosa Applied Technology Center, and the University of Florida Research & Engineering Education Facility.
Related: Ultimate GI Bill Guide
220 Lukasik Avenue
Hurlburt Field, FL 32544
- Barracks/Single Service Member Housing (850) 884-6442
- Child Development Center-West (850) 884-5154
- Child Development Center-Youth (850) 884-6355
- Commissary (850) 881-2138
- Housing (850) 884-7505
- ID/CAC Card Processing (850) 884-4110
- School Liaison (850) 280-5766
- Temporary Lodging (850) 884-7115
- Welcome Center (850) 884-7115
Related: Ultimate Military Benefits Guide
About the author
Kena Sosa is an award-winning author, filmmaker and percussionist. She
earned her BA from OLLU and her MBEGT from SMU. She published two
award-winning children’s books. Kena has written for CBS/DFW Local and
Multicultural Review Magazine. She was the Guest Editor for the Fall/Winter
2023 ChildArt Magazine issue. Kena has written for Recon Media since 2023.