Shaw AFB Relocation Information
Welcome to Shaw AFB! This South Carolina duty station is the perfect place to kick back and embrace that sweet Southern culture you’ve heard so much about.
Home of the 20th Fighter Wing, Shaw AFB is home to just over 7,000 service members. They have a long history, dating back to the 1920s, but today they focus their efforts to support over 20 major mission partners and tenants across the Carolinas.
First impressions of Shaw AFB might leave you believing that there’s not a lot to do here — that’s partially true. While the area doesn’t draw many tourists, it isn’t without its perks. With Columbia about an hour's drive away, you have easy access to family favorites like the Riverbanks Zoo & Garden, EdVenture Children’s Museum, Main Street, and more.
Photo by Robert Sullivan on Flickr
Don’t underestimate the value of living in Sumter! The less crowded streets and fewer attractions make for an effortless lifestyle. Things might feel a little quieter (minus the jets flying overhead), and you may find yourself and the kids channeling your inner creativity, but if there’s one thing you’ll take away from your time at Shaw AFB, it’s the beauty in the outdoors. There are countless state parks nearby, and each one is full of hiking trails and opportunities to get one with nature. This calmer, community-centered town might just be the perfect change of pace.
Photo by Bob Orchard on Unsplash
Frequently Asked Questions About Shaw AFB
1) What is there to do at Shaw AFB?
There aren’t many attractions near Shaw AFB. People spend their time exploring the outdoors hiking the nearby state parks, participating in Sumter festivals, or heading to Columbia for a visit to the zoo, and larger city attractions.
Places to visit in Sumter:
And if you’re up for a little drive, Lake Marion makes for a perfect day of summer fun.
2) Where should I live if stationed at Shaw AFB?
Most military members and their families stationed at Shaw AFB live in Sumter. With a relatively low cost of living, many choose to buy a home. However, a handful of families take advantage of the amenities offered on base and opt for military housing on Shaw AFB.
3) What city is Shaw AFB located in?
Shaw AFB is located just under 10 miles from Sumter, South Carolina. Those stationed at Shaw AFB identify as Sumter residents. The area surrounding Shaw AFB and Sumter consists of smaller, lesser-known towns.
Photo By Jeremy Kierez on Unsplash
4) How far is Shaw AFB from Myrtle Beach?
Shaw AFB is about two hours from Myrtle Beach. It makes a fantastic day trip. But those incredible beaches, mouth-watering food, festivals, and attractions will probably make you want to spend the whole weekend there. It makes the perfect getaway trip when you need to step away from work and push the reset button.
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Base Location and Information
Shaw AFB lies just 40 minutes east of South Carolina’s Capital, Columbia, and about 20 minutes west of Sumter. While some choose to live further north in Camden, most military members and their families settle in Sumter.
This town of about 40,000 people offers a festive community, an easy pace of life, and space to spread out. The cost of living is relatively low, with the average house costing approximately $140,000. Because of that, many people buy rather than rent.
South Carolina makes a unique place to live. With incredible destinations to visit (Myrtle Beach, Charleston, and Charlotte), endless state parks to explore, and the charming Southern hospitality, it’s no wonder that so many military installations are here.
Military installations near Shaw AFB:
The Air Force Inns handles base lodging for military families coming to Shaw AFB. They offer guests rooms, suites, and can accomodate pets with specified rooms.
Contact: (803) 895-3803
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Shaw AFB Housing
Photo by Shaw Family Housing
Shaw AFB Housing is privatized and managed by Hunt Military Communities. They offer 663 homes across three neighborhoods, and work to create a well-maintained community for families who choose to live on base.
Contact: (844) 230-8752
For more information, get in touch with the Military Housing Office: (803) 895-2427
Shaw AFB Off-Base Housing
Photo by Leslie Cross on Unsplash
You’re headed south into a humid subtropical climate, and you know what that means — you’re in for hot and muggy summers! But it’s not all bad. That moist air and heat help make the beautiful landscape around you. While the summers are long and hot, the winters are short and mild. So there's no need to unpack that heavy winter coat.
If you’ve ever lived on the East Coast, then you know that hurricane season is taken very seriously here. The season runs June to November, and the South Carolina Emergency Management Division created a hurricane preparedness guide to provide you with more information on how to stay safe.
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Shaw AFB Area Schools
Military families stationed at Shaw AFB will report to the Sumter County School District. While there are no schools located on Shaw AFB, there is transportation provided to those who live on base.
Elementary School Zoning
Middle School Zoning
Images by The Sumter Item
There are three high schools in Sumter County: Crestwood High School, Lakewood High School, and Sumter High School.
Families can find reviews of area private schools on Private School Review.
Homeschoolers should follow the guidelines provided by the South Carolina Department of Education. Find homeschooling information and support groups through the South Carolina Home Educators Association.
Support for Military & Families
Military members and families benefit from the community and family-driven culture at Shaw AFB. Sumter hosts several events throughout the year, and amenities on base like the golf course, pool, bowling alley, and recreational areas make it easy to meet other military families.
With a 2.8% unemployment rate as of November 2019, military spouses looking to work while at Shaw AFB should find many options.
Shaw AFB, Pilgrim’s Pride, Tuomey Healthcare System, and Sumter County School District are among the largest employers in the Sumter area.
The nearby University of South Carolina-Sumter, Morris College in Sumter, and additional University of South Carolina locations in Columbia make possible to pursue higher education. And those looking to volunteer in the local community will find opportunities with the Sumter Habitat for Humanity, United Way Sumter, Sumter Senior Services, and more.
Some helpful links:
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More Shaw AFB Area Info
524 Stuart Avenue Shaw AFB, SC