New Permanent Change of Station (PCS) orders can come in at any time for military personnel, and you must be prepared to quickly move to your new facility. Not every relocation is the same and there are key questions you should ask your current and new base's Transportation Office before you relocate.
Can I move on my own?
Some facilities require service members to use government transportation and relocation programs, and every base offers these services. Additionally, most facilities allow soldiers to hire independent military moving services or move without assistance.
The military's movers will help you move on requested dates. All days and times can be negotiated even whether you use the military's resources or hire an independent company. You can arrange to have the government pay the moving company.
Am I eligible for any allowances?
The military offers allowances to cover some of the costs associated with relocation, like housing and travel. The Housing Office on your new base determines whether you qualify for these funds, so inquire before you make your arrangements.
Long distance movers qualify for the monetary allowance in lieu of transportation, per diem allowance and temporary lodging allowance. These three allowances are reimbursements for the cost of travel, amenities and housing during domestic trips. Additionally, many troops who aren't living on their bases are eligible for the basic allowance for housing to help offset residential costs, according to Military Spot.
What about my personal vehicle?
The military allows personally owned vehicles (POVs) to be shipped to soldiers who are moved overseas. The requests aren't always authorized and soldiers must have 12 months left on their international orders to be eligible to have their vehicles shipped overseas. The vehicles are moved at the government's expense and active duty personnel should contact their transportation office to discuss eligibility.
For standard Continental United States (CONUS) moves, the military only authorizes blue bark and would warrior shipments.
Who should I speak to about my housing options?
Your new base's Housing Office has information about the on-site housing and residences in the surrounding areas. The office can help you find a house if you choose to live off-base and provides temporary lodging until you find a permanent living situation.
Seek recommendations from fellow soldiers. They can tell you if a base's housing is worth using and tell you the neighborhoods with the best amenities.