Installation Overview: Fairchild Air Force Base, Washington

Fairchild Air Force Base is a United States Air Force base under the operational control of the Air Mobility Command (AMC). Fairchild is located in the eastern part of Washington state and is 12 miles west of Spokane, WA. People assigned here enjoy a good relationship with the Spokane and surrounding communities, as well as with our Canadian neighbors to the north. Spokane's cost of living is 8.9% lower than the U.S. average. There are several ski resorts nearby, and numerous cultural and outdoor activities throughout the year.

The base was named in honor of General Muir Stephen Fairchild. General Fairchild received his wings and commission in 1918 and served as a pilot during World War I. He held various air staff positions during World War II. General Fairchild received his fourth star in 1948 and died on March 17, 1950, while serving as Vice Chief of Staff, USAF.

Fairchild Air Force Base provides the best Air Mobility for America through reliable Air Refueling and Airlift - World-Wide! is the mission statement.

Here is the official website for Fairchild AFB.

Location/Driving Directions to Fairchild Air Force Base, Washington

Directions from airport: Exit airport on Airport Drive. Turn left on Spotted Road. Turn left on Highway 2. Continue straight until you get to Fairchild AFB.

Directions if driving: If you are traveling west on I-90, continue through Spokane and take exit 277. This exit will take you to Highway 2 heading west. Continue on Highway 2 through Airway Heights and Fairchild is approximately 3 miles from Airway Heights on the left hand side of the road. You will see signs indicating where to turn into the base.

If you are heading east on I-90 driving toward Spokane take exit 277B onto Highway 2 heading west. This exit is before you actually go into Spokane. Continue on Highway 2 through Airway Heights and Fairchild is approximately 3 miles from Airway Heights on the left hand side of the road.

Directions from bus/train station: The bus/train station is located in Spokane. Get on I-90 headed west, take exit 277 onto Highway 2 then follow directions above to complete travel.

Main Phone Numbers

Tech. Sgt. Campbell. Photo courtesy U.S. Air Force; photo by: Airman 1st Class Melissa Barnett

Base Operator DSN: 657-1110 (509) 247-1212

Billeting Office Fairchild Inn (509) 247-5519 DSN 657-2290

Child Development Center (509) 247-2403

Clinic Appointments (509) 247-2361 DSN: 657-2361

Education Center (509) 247-2348 DSN: 657-2348

FAFB Housing Management (509) 247-2341 DSN: DSN 657-2341

Family Home Day Care (509) 329-3677

Health and Wellness Center (HAWC) (509) 247-5590

Housing Referral Office (509) 247-2341 DSN 657-2341

Lodging Office (509)244-2290 DSN: 657-2290

TRICARE Service Center 1 800 404-2042 / (509) 244-0732

Washington Homeschool 425-251-0439

Population/Major Units Assigned

Tech. Sgt. Gregorio Martinez, 66th Air Training Squadron chief military training leader, performs an open ranks-inspection on students in the 66th TRS. Photo courtesy U.S. Air Force; photo by: Senior Airman Eunique Stevens

Fairchild is home to a wide variety of units and missions. Most prominent is its air refueling mission, with two wings, one active, the 92nd Air Refueling Wing, and one Air National Guard, the 141st ARW. Other units here include the Air Force Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape school, medical detachments, a weapons squadron and the Joint Personnel Recovery Agency. Fairchild AFB is part of the Air Mobility Command (AMC).

Population assigned-served: Active Duty Officer: 586 Active Duty Enlisted: 2,854 Family Members: 3,496 Retirees: 12,000 Civilian Employees: 998

Temporary Lodging

Temporary Lodging Facility. Photo courtesy U.S. Air Force

There are two lodging facilities on base - Fairchild Inn is on the main part of the base and is used for most guests. The Survival Inn is on the Survival School side of the base and is for students in Survival School. The Fairchild Inn, 300 N. Short Street, is the 24-hour arrival point for all newly assigned members and their families. Personnel making a permanent change of station move to or from Fairchild are given priority; all other personnel will be space-available. Reservations may be made as soon as you receive your orders. For reservations call 509-244-2290 ext 2120, DSN 312-657-4275, or Toll Free 1-888-AFLODGE. If there is no space available, lodging personnel will assist you with finding off-base temporary quarters and will issue you appropriate paperwork.

There are ten units in which pets are allowed. If there is no pet unit available, but there is a regular unit available, you must kennel your animal or you must pay the excess cost to stay off-base. Lodging has information on local kennels and hotels which accept pets - many have a steep fee for pets.


Privatized housing in Command Circle. Photo courtesy U.S. Air Force

Fairchild AFB is privatized with Balfour Beatty Communities residential community. There are over 798 attractive homes in four neighborhoods. Dormitories are available for single or unaccompanied enlisted service members. Please contact the Housing Office at 509-247-2341 or DSN 312-657-2341 as soon as possible after receipt of orders, either directly or through your sponsor.

Before military members seek off-base accommodations, they are required to check with the Housing Referral Office.

A maximum of two pets (dogs or cats) per military family housing unit& is allowed.

The date that a member goes on the waiting list is the date they out-processed their current base. Personnel returning from a dependents-restricted assignment may go on the waiting list effective the date member departed CONUS.

Enlisted personnel E-1 to E-4 (with up to 3 years of active-duty service) are required to live in the dorms. Dormitories are normally assigned by group or squadron. Each dormitory resident will have their own room, and share a bathroom with one person of the same gender. Quiet time is after 10:00 pm.

Off-base rentals, apartments and houses, are available. Some are furnished, or partially furnished. Many single members find that sharing the cost with a roommate is the best option.

There are housing units available for families with special needs. If they are being utilized, another unoccupied unit can be modified to fit the needs. Special needs are allowed to move into the next uncommitted unit in the appropriate grade and bedroom size. These units are not air-conditioned and they do not have generators.

The Spokane area has a fair supply of apartments and houses. The nearest communities are Airway Heights and Cheney. Many Fairchild personnel also live in Spokane, and some in Spokane Valley, just east of Spokane. Communities with a longer commute include Liberty Lake, WA and Couer d'Alene and Post Falls, Idaho. Winter driving conditions impact choice of location for many personnel. Spokane's cost of living is 8.90% lower than the U.S. average. One-bedroom apartments average near $500. Availability of homes for sale is sufficient to meet needs. Home purchase costs in Spokane will be somewhat lower than in Cheney or Airway Heights; although the commute will be a little longer.

Child Care

Child Development Center. Photo courtesy U.S. Air Force

There is one Child Development Center (CDC) at Fairchild AFB. The CDC has space for 250 children, ages 6 weeks through Kindergarten. The CDC is located on base at 201 East Fairchild Hwy, and can be reached by calling 509-247-2403/2408 or DSN 312-657-2403.

Active duty military personnel, DoD civilian personnel paid with either APF or NAF, reservists on active duty or during inactive duty training, and DoD contractors are eligible for services. Children with special needs are eligible; the environment, staffing, and activities may be modified to permit their participation.

There is a waiting list for all ages. Parents may submit a completed DD Form 2606 to get on the waiting list prior to arrival at Fairchild AFB; include anticipated date of arrival. Fax your application to 509-247-8284 or DSN 312-657-8284. Single parents and dual DoD parents have the highest priority. Active duty and DoD civilian employed (or full-time student) parents have higher priority than other families. Active duty members on a Permanent Change of Station (PCS) move who need hourly care have priority for vacant full-day and hourly care spaces 7 days prior to their departure from the base and 7 days after arrival on a new base.

Parents must provide child's immunization record. Single military parents and dual military couples must provide a copy of AF Form 357, Family Care Certification.

Programs Offered include: Full-Day Enrichment Program, Part-Day Enrichment Program, Hourly Care - space-available only, Parents Night Out, Give Parents a Break,Deployed Give Parents a Break.

Transportation to/from school is available for Kindergarten children.

There is one School-Age Program (SAP), located in the Youth Center, at Fairchild AFB. It offers Before and/or After School care, and full-day care on school breaks. The SAP has space for 96 children, ages First Grade through age 12. The Youth Center is located on base at 200 W. Castle, and can be reached by calling 509-247-5601 or DSN 312-657-5601.

There are approximately 20 licensed Family Child Care (FCC) on base, and several affiliated homes in nearby communities. Obtain a list from the FCC office at 610 N. Depot Ave, from the Airman and Family Readiness Center at 4 W. Castle St., or request an electronic copy by calling 509-247-5336, DSN 312-657-5336.


Blair Elementary School. Photo courtesy U.S. Air Force

Fairchild AFB is located in the Medical Lake School District - the district has 2 elementary schools (1 located on the base), 1 middle school, and 1 high school. Military and civilian personnel stationed at Fairchild AFB may choose to have their children in grades kindergarten thru sixth attend elementary school on-base, whether they live on or off the base. It also offers free part-day three and four year-old preschool programs for personnel residing on Fairchild AFB (military personnel who reside off-base may pay).

There are several private schools, offering education from pre-school through high school.

In Washington, students may attend the school of their choice, regardless of whether or not they reside in that school zone. However, the school is not responsible for transportation for a student who does not reside in the school zone. Other restriction may apply.

All school districts provide a form of transportation at no cost to the student; some require that the student live at least one mile from school. The majority of the schools in the area also provide transportation for after school programs at no cost to the student.

Some schools provide before and after school care. Many of the schools provide after school programs, but not child care. Before and After School care is available at the Youth Center on base.

Many schools offer exceptional child programs. These programs could include: vocal and instrumental, honors, and advanced placement opportunities.

Washington state requires that before any home schooling can begin, the parents must first fill out a declaration of intent with the school district in which they reside. In order to comply with Washington state law, the parent must have completed at least 45 quarter credits of college and a course for home based instruction from a post-secondary or vocational institution. The instruction given must also be supervised one hour per week by a certified teacher. The WHO is a Washington Homeschool Organization; their website is an excellent site for regulations and helpful hints. Many of the school districts in the area offer enrichment programs for home schooled students.

There is no fixed grading policy for the state of Washington - it is specific to the school. The responsibility for administering the grading policy lies with the principal of each school, under the direction of the superintendent. The teacher is responsible for individual student evaluation.

Families needing individual assistance with school questions may contact the Airman and Family Readiness Center, 509-247-2246.

There are many educational opportunities for adults, on- and off-base. The Education Center on base is state-of-the-art, with 22 classrooms. Off-base opportunities are abundant, at all levels and in all areas. See the section Education-Training (College/Technical) for more information.

Medical Care

Photo courtesy U.S. Air Force; photo by: Senior Airman Eunique Stevens

The 92d Medical Group provides Family Health, Pediatrics, Immunizations, Women's Health, Optometry, Laboratory and Pharmacy Services.

Active Duty service members and their families enrolled in TRICARE Prime receive the highest priority for care followed by retirees and their families also enrolled in TRICARE Prime. TRICARE Standard patients are seen on a space available basis only, regardless of the status of their sponsor. Patients enrolled in TRICARE for Life (age 65 and older) are not seen on base.

The 92d Medical Group does not have an emergency room (ER). The nearest ERs are located at Sacred Heart Medical Center (101 W 8th Ave) and Deaconess Medical Center (800 W 5th Ave,). Both are located in Spokane, approximately 20 minutes from the base.

Patients will be referred by their primary care managers for care not available on the installation. Urgent care needs require prior authorization from a primary care manager. Emergency care does not require a prior authorization or a referral.

TriWest Healthcare Alliance is the TRICARE contractor for this region. They may be reached at 1-888-TRIWEST (8749378) for further information.

The 92d Dental Clinic provides diagnostic examinations and dental radiology, emergency dentistry, preventive dentistry (dental prophylaxis, fluoride treatment, sealants, patient education), restorative dentistry (fillings), endodontics (root canals), periodontics (health of gums and tissues around the teeth), prosthodontics (dentures, crowns, bridges), and oral surgery.

Active Duty service members receive the highest priority for care. All others are seen on a space available basis, in the following priority: family members of active duty, military retirees, family members of retirees; all other eligible beneficiaries.

For AD/family member dental emergencies during non-duty hours, contact the Family Health Clinic at 509-247-5661 to be put in touch with the Dentist on Call.

Dental Care for active duty family members is primarily through their civilian dentist; families are encouraged to be enrolled in the dental insurance plan. This can be done online . Enrollment is done by the military sponsor, not the Fairchild Clinic.

The Fairchild Dental Clinic is limited to Space Available care for emergencies, exams and cleanings in which the patient sits and waits for an opening "same day" with no guarantee. This is open to those family members who opt not to enroll in the dental insurance. This care is by no means complete, and it is highly encouraged to utilize the insurance plan.