U.S. Border Patrol

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is calling on those who want to help protect American interests and secure our Nation. DHS Components work collectively to prevent terrorism; secure borders and our transportation systems; protect the President and other dignitaries; enforce and administer immigration laws; safeguard cyberspace; and ensure resilience to disasters. We achieve these vital missions through a diverse workforce spanning hundreds of occupations. Make an impact; join DHS.

Being a Border Patrol Agent makes you a valuable member of the Federal Law Enforcement Officer (LEO) profession. Typical assignments include:

  • Detecting, preventing, and apprehending undocumented noncitizens and smugglers of noncitizens at or near the land borders by maintaining surveillance from covert positions
  • Responding to electronic sensor alarms
  • Interpreting and following tracks, marks and other physical evidence
  • Using infrared scopes during night operations
  • Responding to aircraft sighting and other anti-smuggling activities
  • Performing farm and ranch checks, traffic checks, city patrols, and transportation checks
  • Patrolling the international boundary and coastal waterways and using a variety of Government assets for the accomplishment of the USBP Mission. These assets may include, but are not limited to: vehicles, horses, vessels, watercrafts, off-road vehicles, ATVs, snowmobiles, and motorcycles

The path to become a Border Patrol Agent includes several steps. Each step is necessary to make sure we are hiring people who are qualified and capable of doing this important work. This video includes what you need to know as you navigate the journey in becoming a Border Patrol Agent - Your Journey To Becoming A Border Patrol Agent.

For more information on becoming a Border Patrol Agent, contact our recruiters here.

This is a career ladder position with a grade level progression of GL-5, GL-7, GL-9, GS-11, and GS-12. You will be eligible for a promotion to the next higher grade level (without re-applying) once you successfully complete 52 weeks in each grade level. Promotions are at the discretion of the agency. Pay rates are based on the 2023 OPM Salary Tables and do not take into consideration any potential overtime earnings, recruitment incentives, location incentives or yearly cost of living increases.

For more information on career progression, please click here.

Click on this video for more information on what it is like to be a Border Patrol Agent - A Day in the Life of a U.S. Border Patrol Agent. In this video, actual agents in the field provide insight into the skills needed to be successful in the role, the tools they use, and what drives U.S. Border Patrol Agents.

Uniform/Grooming Standards: This position requires wearing an officially approved uniform and complying with established grooming standards found here; as established by the Border Patrol's Uniform and Grooming Standards Policy #07-09126. Please note that in accordance with these standards, tattoos and/or brandings on the head, face, neck, or hands are not permitted, with the exception of one ring tattoo on each hand that cannot be wider than one half inch. Obscene, racially/ethnically derogatory and/or gang tattoos or brandings shall not be visible.