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Old 12-04-2021, 07:26 PM
  #21  
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Originally Posted by JTwift View Post
Another consideration on top of retirement pay is that Tricare is about $60/month with some low copays vs “civilian” monthly medical payments of $500+ whatever nonsense math for FSA, catastrophic caps, etc

thats worth thousands per year, and if you lose your job, you still have medical coverage.
I won’t poopoo the value of having TriCare as an option. I will say that I deliberately opted out of TriCare so that I could take full advantage of being able to put money into an HSA. Like Rickair said, at top tier payscales you can easily afford what you want for health insurance. My company’s health insurance provides access to doctors who won’t take TriCare. After twenty years I was done with second class healthcare.
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Old 12-05-2021, 06:25 PM
  #22  
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Originally Posted by tnkrdrvr View Post
I won’t poopoo the value of having TriCare as an option. I will say that I deliberately opted out of TriCare so that I could take full advantage of being able to put money into an HSA. Like Rickair said, at top tier payscales you can easily afford what you want for health insurance. My company’s health insurance provides access to doctors who won’t take TriCare. After twenty years I was done with second class healthcare.
I think that’s largely based on where you live. Everyone takes Tricare where I am, so it all comes down to the cost of the plan. At $316 annually for a family of 4, it’s tough to beat.

Certainly a tough call for lancejohnson. Having a pension and essentially free healthcare has made it easy to fly only a few days a month and actually enjoy my time off rather than scrapping together a schedule between the reserves and the airline.
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Old 12-12-2021, 08:17 AM
  #23  
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Does anyone know about CHAMPVA?
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Old 12-12-2021, 09:14 AM
  #24  
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Originally Posted by HELOWING View Post
Does anyone know about CHAMPVA?
CHAMPVA is no more. It is Tricare. Many places still code Tricare as CHAMPVA in their coding. I see it in Tricare claims sometimes/payments.
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Old 01-07-2022, 12:25 PM
  #25  
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Default Clean break at 10 years

Hello all!

There's a high likelihood that I'll be out of active duty this summer, at about 10 years of service. Has anyone here transitioned to the civilian side without joining the Guard/Reserve? I would prefer to not work 2 jobs for the next decade, but would appreciate any insight on that path. Our main family concern is healthcare. I know we'd be able to afford HC-related costs while I'm flying, but what about after retirement? Is Medicare the only option?

Thanks!
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Old 01-07-2022, 01:05 PM
  #26  
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Originally Posted by DougForcett View Post
Hello all!

There's a high likelihood that I'll be out of active duty this summer, at about 10 years of service. Has anyone here transitioned to the civilian side without joining the Guard/Reserve? I would prefer to not work 2 jobs for the next decade, but would appreciate any insight on that path. Our main family concern is healthcare. I know we'd be able to afford HC-related costs while I'm flying, but what about after retirement? Is Medicare the only option?

Thanks!
Usually you have the option to elect to keep whatever major HC provider you have in tandem with Medicare A/B at age 65. For example, my parents have Kaiser Permanente Advantage, which kicked in at 65 in tandem with Medicare (https://healthy.kaiserpermanente.org...care-advantage). It acts as a relatively low cost supplement to Medicare A/B and allows you to continue to stay within the network/system of that HC provider.

I believe Tricare has something similar starting at age 65 called Tricare For Life. Have you considered a non-flying reserve job that would require less of a commitment? I only ask because Tricare Reserve Select is still one of the best deals out there (along with the optional dental coverage add-on most reservists get), especially if you have a family. I speak from experience. I've done a few shore tours as a reservist to have some consistency for my family and it really has only been 2 days of IDT drills per month and 2 weeks of ADOS in the summer, super easy. Best tour I did was with a reserve coastal riverine squadron; just showed up once a month, drove some boats for the weekend, drinks each night with the wardroom in town, and 2 weeks per summer of the same thing. These units do deploy but they usually only take 2-3 of their operational companies and every swinging dick wants to go, especially the SWO's and the sea chickens who have never slept in a tent in the desert, so it's very easy to elect to stay at home while they go to Djibouti or Bahrain. It was an awesome tour. If you're AF, I'm sure they have some great shore tours too.

Also very convenient if you do some day get furloughed to have the option to go on Title 10/long term ADOS to pay the bills, and for someone like you who has already put in 10 years, you're half way to a reserve pension that is a very nice nest egg.
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Old 01-07-2022, 01:05 PM
  #27  
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Originally Posted by DougForcett View Post
Hello all!

There's a high likelihood that I'll be out of active duty this summer, at about 10 years of service. Has anyone here transitioned to the civilian side without joining the Guard/Reserve? I would prefer to not work 2 jobs for the next decade, but would appreciate any insight on that path. Our main family concern is healthcare. I know we'd be able to afford HC-related costs while I'm flying, but what about after retirement? Is Medicare the only option?

Thanks!
Major airline retirements generally include some sort of medical, at least the top-tier majors. How will that compare to TRICARE? Hard to say since TRICARE might change over time.

Regional retirement is generally limited to a certificate of appreciation and travel benefits at a very low priority.

But ten years is a lot of retirement points to leave on the table. I would at the very least participate in the reserves in a non-flying billet... most of those billets are much lower workload especially if your career ambition is limited to making O4 so you can make 20 years. Give it a try until you know how the airline gig is shaping up, at least you'll have a fallback position while junior in case of furlough or probation issues. Maybe you'll even enjoy it. Inter-service transfers are possible too if that would help your geographic situation... everybody wants winged aviators in their inventory right now, even if you're in a non-flying billet.

I was of your mind about 25 years ago. Then I kept running into old guys who said "gee I sure wish I had stuck with the reserves and got the retirement". After hearing that enough times, I signed up and am quite glad I did now.
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Old 01-07-2022, 04:07 PM
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Paul and Rick, thank you both for the input and for helping me keep perspective. I hadn't given too much consideration to non-flying Guard/Reserve job, but that is definitely worth looking into.
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Old 01-07-2022, 04:31 PM
  #29  
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Originally Posted by DougForcett View Post
Hello all!

There's a high likelihood that I'll be out of active duty this summer, at about 10 years of service. Has anyone here transitioned to the civilian side without joining the Guard/Reserve? I would prefer to not work 2 jobs for the next decade, but would appreciate any insight on that path. Our main family concern is healthcare. I know we'd be able to afford HC-related costs while I'm flying, but what about after retirement? Is Medicare the only option?

Thanks!
I left active duty and had a 4 year separation. I found that I missed the people and the flying after a couple years. I went back in and am very happy that I did. Guard/Reserve service definitely demands your time (and patience), but it saved my bacon a couple of times with the ups and downs of the airline industry.

3 Monetary incentives off the top of my head:
TRS is hard to beat when compared to civilian medical insurance.
Retirement can be a guaranteed decent mortgage down the road.
G.I. Bill education benefit transfer to the children.

At some point in the past when I got pretty fed up, I ran a spread sheet with expected earning + retirement + Education.
The numbers on that spread sort of pacified the irritation of my extra "Full time job with part time pay".
Of course, nothing is free.
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Old 01-07-2022, 06:24 PM
  #30  
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It seems like a large risk that staying on active to 20 alleviates is a loss of medical.
I understand that most majors have long term disability insurance to help mitigate this.

How does LTD work? What does it cost? Does it pay a living wage if you cant fly anymore?
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