We understand the unique bond you share with your brothers and sisters you served with in a time of war, and because we, too, have been there. Since 1899, the VFW has been the nation’s leading veterans service organization in the fight to better the lives of all those who’ve worn the uniform of the United States Military. No matter which conflict called you to service, we invite you to join us. Stand strong with the nearly 1.7 million members of the VFW and its Auxiliary, together we continue to fight for all that’s good FOR VETERANS.
The VFW continues to be a voice for returning and currently deployed service members and their families. The 2.4 million members of the VFW and its Auxiliaries are located in 8,500 VFW posts around the world. We welcome everyone who meets VFW eligibility requirements, regardless of age, race, religion, or gender.
If you meet the criteria listed below, you’ve earned your membership in the VFW. This is something only a small percentage of the U.S. population will ever be able to claim, and you should be proud of your service. The VFW is dedicated to fostering camaraderie amongst its members, assisting eligible veterans and their families, educating the public about our proud military history, advocating for veterans’ causes, and honoring the memory of our fallen comrades.
There are three qualifiers for membership in the VFW, as set out in our By-Laws. An individual must meet all three in order to become a member. They are as follows:
1: Citizenship – must be a U.S. citizen or U.S. National.
2: Honorable Service – must have served in the Armed Forces of the United States and either received a discharge of Honorable or General (Under Honorable Conditions) or be currently serving.
3: Service in a war, campaign, or expedition on foreign soil or in hostile waters*. This can be proven by any of the following:
- An authorized campaign medal (see a full list of qualifying medals and badges)
- Receipt of Hostile Fire Pay or Imminent Danger Pay (verified by a military pay statement)
- Service in Korea for 30 consecutive or 60 non-consecutive days
*This information is usually available through a veteran’s DD-214. If other information is needed or if a veteran’s DD-214 is not complete, they can contact the National Personnel Records Center online or at 314-801-0800 to request more information.
More detailed information on VFW eligibility can be accessed here.
As the largest combat veterans organization around, VFW membership spans the globe. We’re an elite group of combat warriors who have each other’s backs long after the fight is over.
Camaraderie. Empowerment. Access to a vast network of resources. Assistance securing the benefits you've earned. Numerous discounts on a number of products and services. With a VFW membership, you'll find all this and more! Further, your VFW membership establishes your place in the VFW legacy that dates back to our founding in 1899.
Your dues of just $45.00 will cover the cost of your membership for a full calendar year as a Member-At-Large for your state. ($1.98 of your membership dues goes toward your VFW magazine subscription.)
Did you know you can upgrade your membership to Life Member, or Legacy Life Member?
By becoming a VFW Life member, you make a lifetime commitment to serving your fellow service members and veterans. That's something to take great pride in.
You'll also enjoy many great benefits of being a Life member! You will:
You can become a VFW Life member by making a one-time payment, or you can pay for your Life membership through our installment plan with an initial $45 payment and the Life membership amount billed over an 11-month period based on your age.