Luke Air Force Base in Glendale on map

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 Luke Air Force Base in Glendale, AZ Arizona Military Bases


Luke AFB is an Air Force operated base close to Phoenix and Glendale. It is one of the largest bases in the world and the only one out there that can successfully train F-16 Falcon pilots. It has more than 200 units available for training and potential missions. In other words, it is a very strategic point of the United States map. However, the training missions are about to change soon, as the Air Force has recently announced the plans to replace the powerful F-16 Falcon planes with the more advanced F-35 Lightning II units. The replacement dates were not announced though.


The base is run and inhabited by the 56th Fighter Wing, which consists of four different groups. The numbers this base can brag with include around 500 graduate pilots every year, with not less than 700 technicians over the same period of time. All of these pilots are sent to fight in various missions around the world.


The base was named after Lieutenant Frank Luke Jr., one of the American aces during World War I. The plans to raise it started in 1940, when the Air Force sent an engineer to pick up the best spot in Arizona for a base. The first building was the Litchfield Park base. The name was released by a completely different base from Hawaii for this one to take it over. Throughout World War II, the new base was the most important one in the United States. A large number of professional trainers was deployed there to train and help graduate more than 12,000 pilots every year. The base has one of the highest graduating ranks in the world. In less than 4 years after the construction started, the pilots there had more than a million hours in the air. In 1946, as World War II was getting to an end, the number of pilots dropped to 299. The maintenance costs were no longer justifying the results, therefore Luke AFB Arizona was disestablished. It was reactivated in the ’50s, once with the Korean war. The current F-16 Falcon planes were brought to the base in the ’80s.


Plenty of troops got in an out Luke AFB since 1940. These days, only 5 of them can be found here – 56th medical staff, 56th Fighter Wing staff units, 56th group dealing with the operations, 56th group for the overall maintenance and 56th group for support.


Occasionally, the base hosts temporarily deployed soldiers for advanced training techniques. All of these groups work together in a tight relationship and take the F-16 Falcon piloting beyond the limits.


The housing system at Luke AFB has been privatized years ago and dealt with by Balfour Beatty Communities. The base has almost 600 homes, which is more than enough for the number of individuals getting there. Every newcomer is placed on a waiting list. Since the system is privatized, things go like in every regular city. The Balfour Beatty Communities deal with real estate operations in order to provide the citizens with the best services.


 Luke Air Force Base in Glendale on map


Luke AFB

Luke AFB



Luke AFB is located in Glendale, Arizona. Located in the Valley of the Sun, individuals stationed at Luke Air Force Base enjoy a dry, moderate climate that is the envy of many, particularly in the winter. The west valley area of Maricopa County where Luke Air Force Base is located is a fast growing area.



Luke Air Force Base is named for the first aviator to be awarded the Medal of Honor – 2nd Lt Frank Luke Jr. Luke’s 56th Fighter Wing was first activated on January 15, 1941, as the 56th Pursuit Group. The 56th left for England January 6, 1943. During the following two years, pilots of the 56th destroyed more enemy planes and listed more aces than any other Army Air Force group in the 8th Air Force, including the top two aces in Europe. The combat and support operations of the wing in Southeast Asia were numerous and varied. The 56th was reassigned to Luke Air Force Base on April 1, 1994.



“Train the world’s greatest F-16 fighter pilots and maintainers, while deploying mission ready warfighters.” Luke Air Force Base is assigned to the Air Education and Training Command. Other commands represented at Luke Air Force Base include the U.S. Air Force Reserves and the Air Combat Command.


Population Served

Luke AFB currently serves more than 85,000 personnel consisting of 4,599 Active Duty, 818 Reservists, 1,206 Air Force Civilian Employees, 1,200 Students, 6,700 Family Members, and 68,900 Military Retirees.


Base Transportation

Contact your sponsor to make arrangements for pick up. If you need commercial transportation, taxis, limousines and Super Shuttle vans are available. Be careful in your selection of this transportation since it can be expensive.



Once you receive your notification of assignment, you should request a sponsor through your local Unit Personnel Office (UPO) or through your local Airman & Family Readiness Center (A&FRC). If you have concerns, once you have requested a sponsor, contact your A&FRC for assistance.


Your sponsor should meet you upon arrival. You should arrange where you will meet your sponsor prior to arrival. However, if your sponsor does not meet you, contact your unit of assignment during duty hours (7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday). If you arrive after duty hours, contact the Lodging Office at 623-856-3941. This office is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

You can arrange to have your mail delivered to the following address while you are enroute PCS: Your Name, General Delivery, Luke AFB, AZ 85309-9999.


Temporary Quarters

Fighter Country Inn (lodging) is open is open around the clock. Families will stay in one of the Temporary Lodging Facilities for up to 30 days based on availability. Single airmen arriving after duty hours or on weekends are lodged in visiting airmen’s quarters (VAQ) until the first duty day. You are encouraged to make temporary quarters’ reservations prior to arrival through your sponsor or by calling 623-856-3941 or DSN 312-896-3941.


Relocation Assistance

The staff of the Airman & Family Readiness Center (A&FRC) provide comprehensive relocation services. Contact the A&FRC at 623-856-6550 and DSN 312-896-6550. One of the most important services offered at the A&FRC is information and referral. If you don’t know who to call, call us. We’re never the wrong place to go or call!


The A&FRC provides a newcomers’ briefing (Wing Orientation) twice a month. The A&FRC participates in the First Term Airmen Center briefings. These two briefings provide a warm welcome for new arrivals and an orientation to the local area and local issues. The A&FRC also hosts “Heartlink”, an interactive and fun spouse orientation. Information on the local community, schools, crime statistics, automobile insurance and more are available upon request at the A&FRC. The Family Services section provides a comprehensive loan closet where members can borrow common household items until incoming personnel’s personal household good shipments arrive.


Critical Installation Information

Airlines usually will not ship pets in or out from April to September. It is simply too hot and it would endanger your pets. If you are relocating during this timeframe, you will need to make arrangements other than shipping your pets by air. Contact your sponsor if you have questions.


If you plan to purchase a home, it is important to note that home prices have fluctuated substantially in the last few years. This has also had an impact on rental prices since more people are renting until they can save enough to afford the down payment.


Bring enough money to ensure you can meet the needs of your relocation. If you intend to live off base, you may need money for deposits. There are costs for buying food items that you may have shipped, but haven’t arrived. If arriving from overseas, you may need a new vehicle, down payment, auto insurance, etc. There can also be unexpected expenses that you couldn’t have foreseen. Plan ahead.


Frequently Called Numbers on Base

Base Operator: DSN 896-1110 Comm: 623-856-7411

Luke Child Development Center 623-856-6339, 623-856-6338, DSN 312-896-6339, or DSN 312-896-6338.

Family Child Care Office 623-856-7472 or DSN 312-896-7472

School Age Program 623-856-7470, 623-856-7471, DSN 312-896-7470, or DSN 312-896-7471

Family Support Center (FSC) (623) 856-6386 or DSN 896-6386

Fighter Country Inn 623-856-3941, 623-935-2641, DSN 312-896-3941

Balfour Beatty Communities 623-388-3515