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Best-Paying Jobs in the Navy

The best-paying jobs in the Navy cover a wide spectrum of different positions. We will explain the responsibilities for each job listed, their classification, salary, and requirements for advancing.

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The Navy divides jobs into E classifications, or rates, from E1-E9, with E-9 being the highest paid and highest chain of command. This article will focus on the highest paying positions between E-5 and E-9 ratings. We will reveal the salaries and skills related to five of these jobs.

Career Comparison

Job Title Rate Monthly Salary (2018)* Skills Needed
Aviation Boatswain's Mate E-9 $5,173.80 Competence with Machinery, Manual Dexterity
Aviation Ordnancemen E-8 $4,235.40 Manual Dexterity, Record Keeping
Culinary Specialist E-7 $2,944.20 Test Equipment Use, Analysis
Sonar Technician First Class E-6 $2,546.40 Aptitude for Equipment, Manual Dexterity
Hull Maintenance Technician E-5 $2,332.80 Ability to Use Equipment, Manual Dexterity

Source: *Department of Defense

Best-Paying Jobs in the Navy

These top jobs in the Navy have very different sets of responsibilities. Below we will explore the day-to-day operations of each job, their entry pay level, as well as the promotion requirements and/or potential.

Aviation Boatswain's Mate

The Aviation Boatswain's Mate has an E-9 Navy rating making it the best-paid job in the Navy. The E-9 starting pay is $5,173.80 per month. The Aviation Boatswain's Mate (AB) conducts quick and safe launch and recovery functions for a Naval aircraft that is both at sea and on shore. The AB can obtain an advanced rating by attending an 'A' class for five weeks in Pensacola, Florida. To obtain this position, the AB must make a 5 year commitment to remain in the Navy.

Aviation Ordnancemen

Aviation Ordnancemen (AO) has a Naval rating of E-8. Their base pay starts at $4,235.40 per month making them the second-best paid job in the Navy. Aviation Ordnancemen are weapons specialists. They are responsible for the operating, issuing, storing, loading, and launching of all weapons on a Naval aircraft. These weapons include missiles, rockets, bombs, guns, and torpedoes. For additional pay, they may also fly helicopters, turbojets, and propeller aircrafts. An E-8 may be promoted to E-9 after serving 36 months as an E-8.

Culinary Specialist

A Culinary Specialist (CS) has a Navy rating of E-7 and is the third best-paying job in the Navy. The entry-level pay is $2,944.20 per month. Culinary specialists maintain the sanitation and cleanliness of food closets, refrigerators, and equipment. They develop menus and perform all aspects of the planning, preparing, and serving of meals. The career path for a culinary specialist is a promotion to E-8 Food Preparation or E-8 Sanitation after the culinary specialist has served for 36 months.

Sonar Technician First Class

The rating of a Sonar Technician (STG) is E-6. Starting at a base pay of $2,546.40 per month, the Sonar Technician is the fourth best-paying job in the Navy. Sonar Technicians have two branches: Sonar Technician Surface and Sonar Technician Submarine. Sonar Technicians operate and maintain SONAR equipment and perform underwater surveillance. They also conduct search and rescue missions. An E-6 may be promoted to E-7 after serving 36 months as an E-6.

Hull Maintenance Technician

E-5 is the pay grade rating for the Hull Maintenance Technician (HT) making it the lowest paying job on this list. With a base pay of $2,332.80, it is the sixth best-paying job in the Navy. Hull Maintenance Technicians install and maintain the plumbing and sanitation systems including fixtures, pipes, and fittings. They also perform all welding on metal surfaces and structures. An E-5 may be promoted to E-6 after serving 36 months as an E-5.

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