The Enlisted Quarterly Assignments List (EQUAL) is the assignment listing that advertises most of the enlisted assignments which are sending Airmen overseas and providing continental United States (CONUS) assignments for overseas returnees in the ranks of airman basic through senior master sergeant. These assignments are advertised and matched eight times per year (four cycles each for those departing to, and four returning from the overseas area).
The listing notifies Airmen what is available by Air Force Specialty Code (AFSC), grade, and location. It allows them to align their preferences to actual Air Force needs. EQUAL may be viewed by logging into Secure Apps (i.e. through the Air Force Portal) and clicking on Airman Management System (AMS), or at local installation personnel offices.
CONUS Airmen are eligible for reassignment to overseas locations when they have completed the required time-on-station (TOS). The normal TOS requirement for overseas assignment is 12 months for first-term Airmen and 24 months for career Airmen. In addition to TOS requirements, Airmen must meet established quality control criteria for reassignment (not under Article 15 punishment, not on the Control Roster, not in Drug/Alcohol rehabilitation, no Unfavorable Information File, etc.).
Airmen are also required to be eligible to obtain the required retainability for the assignment in which they are volunteering. For example, you are a married technical sergeant nearing high year of tenure (HYT) and only able to get 36 months of retainability (you only have 36 months after the Report No Later Than Date (RNLTD) of the advertised requirement, before you retire) and you see a requirement for Yokota Air Base on EQUAL for your AFSC and grade. You know that if you volunteer as an extended tour volunteer you have a higher priority than a standard tour volunteer. However, you cannot be an extended tour volunteer because you cannot obtain the required 48 months of retainability and the computer will not select you. So to be properly considered for this Yokota requirement, you would need to volunteer for the standard tour length of 36 months.
Overseas members with an indefinite Date Eligible for Return from Overseas (DEROS) are eligible for a Consecutive Overseas Tour (COT) any time after completing their original tour. Individuals with an established DEROS can also be considered for a COT, but can only volunteer for advertised requirements with a RNLTD equal to their DEROS month or the following two months. For example, if your DEROS is January, you are eligible to compete for assignments with January, February, or March RNLTDs. You must meet the eligibility requirements as outlined in AFI 36-2110, Assignments.
If an Airman is not selected for a COT assignment or did not volunteer because they want to return to the CONUS, they will compete for a CONUS assignment during their overseas return cycle window. The Airman must have 12 months retainability after DEROS to be considered for a return assignment. They only need 7-12 months if they are serving on a short tour where the accompanied tour is not authorized, and HYT restricted from getting the full 12 months. If an Airman does not have or obtain the required retainability by the required date, their DEROS will be involuntarily extended to match their date of separation (DOS). For answers to questions or other specific information on retainability issues, contact local Military Personnel Sections.
Military personnel married to military personnel do not use the overseas returnee EQUAL. Instead, Air Force couples use the overseas EQUAL to apply for overseas assignments, including COTs. For more information, see Join Spouse Program information.