Rest and Recuperation (R&R)

Regular Army: Active Duty

Benefit Fact Sheet



Soldiers who are serving in areas designated as hostile fire and imminent danger area may be eligible for one Rest and Recuperation (R&R) trip per 12-month deployment period. R&R is a chargeable leave program that authorizes use of ordinary leave and may not be combined with other absences. Soldiers must meet certain requirements to be eligible for R&R leave.


Regular Army Active Duty Soldiers on a 12-month deployment order with a minimum of 365 days boots on ground (as of 1 January 2012) in the Central Command area in one of the 16 designated countries by the Department of Defense are eligible for R&R leave.

Benefit Highlights:

Rest and Recuperation is a chargeable leave program that authorizes use of ordinary leave to allow Soldiers leave away from hostile fire and imminent danger areas for 15 days. R&R periods are limited to one leave per 12-month period and may not be combined with other absences.

Travel to and from destinations is not charged to the leave. R&R leave begins the day after the Soldier arrives at the leave destination and ends the day prior to the day the Soldier returns. Airline costs are paid from the airport nearest duty to the airport nearest the leave destination and return.

New changes in leave policy for the armed forces were directed in the National Defense Authorization Act of 2008 affecting Special Rest and Recuperation (SR&R).

Special Rest and Recuperation leave for Soldiers has increased from 15 days to 20 days. This authorized leave applies to personnel completing an overseas tour extension longer than 12 months. This authorization is distinct from and not to be confused with the USCENTCOM Rest and Recuperation Leave Program.

Non-Chargeable Rest and Recuperation (NCR&R):

 The NCR&R Leave program allows Soldiers serving in the land areas of Iraq and Afghanistan to take a non-chargeable administrative absence of up to 15 days to be used in conjunction with the benefits provided under the R&R Leave Program. Soldiers deployed to these areas on a 12-month deployment with a minimum of 270 days boots on ground are eligible for 15 days of NCR&R. The granting of the days is contingent upon mission requirements and authorized only for those service members who take part in the Non-Chargeable Rest and Recuperation program. The no-charge administrative leave program is being limited for those service members in the "most arduous" areas.

Combatant commanders can ask the Secretary of Defense to designate additional locations for NCR&R if the area/location:

  • Is a place where U.S. forces have been engaged in combat operations against a hostile force within the last six months and where actual combat operations are expected to continue.
  • Meets R&R leave program criteria.
  • Is in a combat zone designated by presidential executive order.
  • Is in an area where service members are exposed to the most arduous conditions (for example, locations for which Hardship Duty Pay is authorized).

Note: The deployment period for Corps and Division Headquarters, high demand-low density units and Soldiers that deploy individually will remain at one year. This change in policy will affect Soldiers in all named operations, including Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan, Operation Noble Guardian in Kosovo and Multinational Forces Sinai in Egypt. Soldiers deploying for 9-months under the change in policy will not be granted R&R leave, but commanders will retain the option of granting emergency leave, according to Army regulations and local policy.

National Guard and Reserve Component unit tour lengths will be the same as active duty -- nine months. In their case, though, officials noted, deployment and mobilization are two different issues. Deployment is defined as the time between deployment and redeployment in the USCENTCOM AOR and does not include time spent at MOB stations. Even though these units may still be mobilized for 12 or more months, they will spend only nine months of that mobilization deployed.

Additional Information:

For more information on these leave programs and other programs that may be available, please review Army Regulation 600-8-10, Leaves and Passes:

To view the Army HRC site on Rest and Recuperation:

Document Review Date: 29 August 2012