Source: Air Force Times
The U.S. Air Force announced in May 2018 that it is adopting the Army’s Operational Camouflage Pattern for its new utility uniforms. Among other changes, lettering, patches, and insignia on the new uniforms will be spice brown. Women will benefit from 20 different sizes of the OCP and have the option of wearing the unisex version, if they prefer.
The force-wide rollout of the OCP is set to begin on October 1, and by April 1, 2021, all airmen will be expected to wear the OCP, as the current Airman Battle Uniform will be no more. The OCP will cost approximately $20 more than the current uniform, but the new coyote brown boots will cost the same.
The timeline for the rollout looks like this:
July 2018: The Air Force will release a “guidance memorandum” detailing how to wear the new uniform.
October 1, 2018: “Optional wear” of the OCP begins. Anyone who already owns the uniform may wear it.
Additionally, AAFES stores at the following bases will begin selling OCPs: Aviano Air Base in Italy, Joint Base Charleston in South Carolina, MacDill Air Force Base in Florida, and Shaw Air Force Base in South Carolina, respectively. From there, the Air Force will gradually introduce OCPs further.
April 1, 2019: More AAFES stores will carry the OCP.
October 1, 2019: New airmen currently going through basic military training, officer training school, and/or the Reserve Officer Training Corps are expected to receive their OCPs starting next October.
By this time, military instructors and leaders will begin wearing OCPs to demonstrate dress and appearance. OCPs are also expected to be available for purchase online through AAFES.
June 2020: Airmen are required to begin wearing coyote brown boots. No other boots are allowed.
April 1, 2021: This is the last deadline for over 500,000 airmen to begin wearing OCPs and retire their ABUs for good.
The switch from ABUs to OCPs is expected to cost approximately $237 million over the initial three-year rollout.