Dear Parents,

Here you will find helpful information on your cadet’s first uniforms, how to purchase, what’s mandatory, what’s optional, where to buy, and even some important money saving tips.

At a minimum, cadets are required to maintain three types of uniforms:

  1. the camouflage Airman Battle Uniform (ABU), and
  2. the Physical Training (PT) Uniform, and
  3. the Blue Class-B Uniform

Where to start? The ABU and PT Uniform should be purchased first. This will permit your cadet to fully participate in most CAP activities.

IMPORTANT MONEY SAVER: Only after your cadet achieves his/her first promotion, will he/she need to order the Blue Class-B Uniform. Why? Because once promoted, your cadet will receive a $100 “Curry Blues Voucher” from Vanguard to offset the cost! So, we recommend holding off on the purchase of this uniform until after your cadet completes Great Start training and earns his/her first stripe.


Mandatory ABU Items

  • (1) ABU Shirt
  • (1) ABU Pants
  • (1) ABU Cap
  • (1) Rigger Belt, Khaki
  • (2+) T-Shirts, Tan
  • Embroidered blue “CIVIL AIR PATROL” Tape
  • Embroidered blue name tape
  • (1) Socks, Black (thick combat boot/hiking socks are recommended to reduce chance of blisters)
  • (1 pair) Boot Bands (aka blousing bands)
  • (1 pair) Boots, Combat, Black Leather (uppers can be synthetic material, but polishable leather toe and heel.)

Optional ABU Items.

Especially important during overnight outdoor bivouacs and field training exercises. The parka is water and wind resistant while the fleece jacket is is for insulation. Either can be worn over the ABU uniform. Designed to be worn together during inclement/cold weather. 


  • US Air Force GORE-TEX Parka
  • US Air Force Fleece Jacket, ECWCS Gen III, foliage (sage) green
  • Watch Cap, Black. plain, solid black knit or fleece/micro fiber material
  • Gloves, Black (may be leather or synthetic material)


Mandatory PT Uniform Items

  • (1) T-Shirt, Tan (same t-shirt as worn with the ABU)
  • (1 pair) Running Shorts, Solid Black or Navy Blue
  • (1 pair) Socks, White
  • (1 pair) Running Shoes, (recommend shoes made specifically for running)

Optional PT Uniform Items (recommended for cold weather months)

  • Sweat Pants & Sweat Shirt or Hoodie, Solid Gray, Black or Navy Blue.


     Mandatory Female Class B Uniform Items

  • (1) Short-Sleeve Blue Shirt
  • (1) Blue Slacks or Skirt
  • (1) Belt, Blue Cotton or Elastic with Silver Tip and Buckle (female size)
  • (1) Flight Cap, Airman (female)
  • (1) Cadet Enlisted Civil AIr Patrol Hat Device
  • (1 pair) Shoes, Black, Low Quarters, Pumps or Slip-on
  • (1 pair) Hosiery. (black dress socks may be worn with pants)
  • (1) Cadet Engraved Nameplate

     Mandatory Male Class B Uniform Items

  • (1) Short Sleeve Blue Shirt
  • (1) Blue Trousers
  • (1) Belt, Blue Cotton or Elastic with Chrome Tip and Buckle (male size)
  • (1) Flight Cap, Airman (male)
  • (1) Cadet Enlisted Civil AIr Patrol Hat Device
  • (1) Tie, Blue Polyester or Silk, Herringbone Twill
  • (1) Undershirt, V-neck, White
  • (1) Shoes, Black Corfam (patent leather), or polishable Black Leather
  • (1) Dress Socks, Solid Black
  • (1) Cadet Engraved Nameplate

     Optional Class B Uniform Items. Recommend one – not both – for cold weather months.

  • AIr Force Lightweight Blue Jacket
  • Air Force Pullover Blue Sweater


VANGUARD. Most, but not all, uniform items can be purchased online from CAP’s official uniform supplier, Vanguard. To ensure your cadet’s first uniform fits properly and has all the necessary accessories, we recommend parents speak with Vanguard‘s uniform representative, Norine, at 800-221-1264, extension 271 before ordering.

MARCH AIR RESERVE BASE MILITARY CLOTHING. CAP Members have shopping privileges at Air Force military exchanges for uniform items only. Fortunately, March AIr Reserve Base generally grants base access to CAP members with ID and the base Military Clothing shop carries almost everything in a variety of sizes. Location and hours:

Bldg 758, 23640 N St., Riverside, CA 92518

Fri-Sat 0930-1900
Mon-Thurs 0930-1800
Sun 1030-1800

MILITARY SURPLUS STORES.  You can often find Air Force uniform items at a local or online military surplus store.

EBAY. On eBAY you can find new and used US Air Force uniform items.


  • Vanguard offers free shipping for online orders over $35
  • Use the Vanguard $100 “Curry Blues Voucher” to offset costs for the Blue Class B Uniform.
  • posts a new 10% discount coupon on their Facebook and Twitter pages at the beginning of every month.  You can obtain the current discount code here – Vanguard 10% Discount.

The complete Civil Air Patrol uniform regulation is available here: CAP Uniform Manual 39-1