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Cost of Living Allowance (COLA)

What are Cost of Living Allowances (COLA)?

This is money that is for the purpose of covering higher costs of food, transportation, clothing and other non-housing items. COLAS in the United States are taxable but overseas service members are not subject to taxes for their COLAS. The rates vary from $19 per month to over $500 per month in the most expensive United States cities. There are over 50,000 service members receiving COLAS in more than 40 stateside locations designated as high-cost when their cost of living exceeds the United States average cost of living by more than 8 percent. The average overseas COLA is $500 per month and over 250,000 service members receive this COLA in 625 locations.


Basic Pay | Commissioned Officers | Warrant Officers | Enlisted Members

Assignment Incentive Pay | Aviation Career Incentive Pay | Career Enlisted Flight Pay | Career Sea Pay | Career Status Military Pay Bonus | Command Responsibility Military Pay | Dislocation Pay | Drill Pay | Enlistment Bonus | Family Separation Pay | Flight Pay | Foreign Language Proficiency Pay | Hardship Duty Pay | Hazardous Duty Incentive Pay | Hostile Fire-Imminent Danger Pay | Lodging-Plus Pay | Medical Personnel Pay | Nuclear Duty Pay | Overseas Tour Extension | Selected Re-Enlistment Bonuses | Submarine Duty Pay

Clothing Allowances | Cost of Living Allowances | Dependent Allowances | Housing Allowances | Personal Money Allowances | Subsistence Allowance