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“You have to have a military sponsor”

Lackland Air Force Base
Ranked #16 of 266 things to do in San Antonio
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: Home to a well-known medical research facility and an important source of income for the community.
Nicholasville, Kentucky
Level Contributor
256 reviews
151 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 169 helpful votes
“You have to have a military sponsor”
Reviewed February 19, 2011

We kind of lucked into knowing someone working at the base. And they insisted that we go to a graduation. Lackland is no longer an open installation. Only families of graduates or someone with a military ID to sponser you is allowed in. Throughout our stay in San Antonio, we would always see graduates in their "blues" visiting different sites. Be sure to congratulate them. The ceremony was nice. What a concept...swearing to the constitution? Glad to see someone still upholds those truths. Afterwards, we toured the grounds and looked at the planes.

Visited May 2010
5 Thank KentuckyDB
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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421 reviews from our community

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English first
Magnolia, Texas
Level Contributor
181 reviews
51 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 148 helpful votes
“A public relations disaster”
Reviewed September 24, 2010

We have gone on several guided base tours throughout the country. The once-a-month civilian tour of Lackland was a stunning disappointment. Once we navigated the confusion over how to arrange the tour and who to contact, our little group showed up at the appointed time and place. We waited in the parking lot 15 minutes before seeing another human being. An airman showed up across the street but appeared to be waiting for something. After another 15 minutes, we figured out this was our guide. Another 10 minutes and an old, hard-seated school bus appeared, our transportation for the tour. There really wasn't much to see because you weren't allowed off the bus except at the static displays of aircraft. We knew more about the aircraft displayed than our guide. At least it didn't cost anything, but it was a huge waste of time and we didn't learn anything new.

Thank Perkypaws
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
92 reviews
23 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 99 helpful votes
“It's an Air Force Base, not an "attraction"!”
Reviewed June 18, 2010

I'm thinking that the only reason any civilian would visit Lackland AFB is because they have a loved one who is graduating from Air Force basic training (or a loved one who is stationed there). Having just come back from there (June 2010, when my son graduated BMT), here's some stuff for parents to know: (1) The map of the base that they give to parents is not accurate! Streets that look like you can drive through are sometimes blocked off, or pedestrian-only. The map, amazingly enough, does not show where the gates are, and neither will your GPS. Expect to be confused a lot. ASK -- base personnel are nice & helpful to us civilians. (2) As an anti-terrorism measure, they randomly close different gates at different times. So, when your airman has to return from "town pass", allow time to drive around to several different gates before finding one that is open. (3) Your newly-minted airman will have to spend all of graduation weekend wearing his/her "blues" when out in public, so don't be surprised if all s/he really wants to do is hang out in your hotel room or at the hotel pool. They have been busting their butts for 8-1/2 weeks (or more...), so relaxing, and eating at a normal pace, will probably top their to-do list on your visit.

32 Thank mompeef
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Diego
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Hope nobody wants to take the tour!”
Reviewed May 21, 2010

Hope nobody wants to take the tour! We recently spent a week in San Antonio, and since my husband did his military training at Lackland over 20 years ago, I thought it would be nice to surprise him with a tour of the base. Starting a week before the tour, I called 4 times and emailed 3 times trying to get confirmation that we could attend the Tuesday, May 11 tour. I did talk to a girl that said maybe they could fit us in but she never called me back. When I called her back, she said for me to send an email to the girl in charge with all my information and request. I sent the email to 2 different people 3 times. Nobody bothered to ever call me back or answer my emails. Was I to then assume that meant that we could attend???? Evidentially so, because on the day of the tour, the idiot in charge called us 5 minutes after the tour started and asked us if we needed directions. WHAT? I didn’t even see the call till a couple of hours later because we were on vacation and I sure was not expecting any call from Lackland. I was SO mad! I called her back and informed her that because of their lack of common courtesy in returning calls and emails, we didn’t know that they added us to the list. Then ( I’m getting mad again just remembering that call!!! ) she proceeded to blame somebody else in her office. ARE YOU SERIOUS? Then to add more gas to the fire, she offers to add us to next months tour and invites us to some air show in June, after I had already told her that this was a once in a lifetime trip for us and that we might not ever get to come to San Antonio again. No communication, no integrity, and no common sense?! Very disappointing!

2 Thank Nanicci-J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
washington state
2 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Motel/Hotel to stay at”
Reviewed March 21, 2010

We came in Dec 09 to Watch our Son Graduate Basic we stayed at Holiday Inn Express it was very easy to get to from Airport and Base. The people working there were outstanding. I loved the area close to resturants and the movie theather and mall. REally made my time there enjoyable we stayed from a Wednesday evening to Monday morning. Enjoyed the Riverwalk, and Sea World. If I go again to SanAntonio Tx I will defiantely stay at this Motel.

4 Thank jules3829
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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