Air Force pilots serve as officers and receive a salary based on their rank's pay grade. At the O-1 pay grade, pilots are Second Lieutenants and earn between $33,941 and $42,703 per year, as of 2014. Pay within the pay grade increases with time served.
With each promotion, pilots earn a larger base salary. According to the United States Air Force, captains at the O-3 pay grade earn between $45,246 and $73,627 per year.
Pilots may also be eligible for enlistment and retention bonuses. These bonuses vary based on the need for pilots and the Air Force's budget. For example, as of 2013, pilots who committed to serving an additional nine years were awarded a retention bonus of up to $225,000.