The Military Move: Your First PCS

Must Read

Heather Jones
Heather Jones
I'm Heather, an author passionate about home improvements. My writing is your guide to making homes better. Let's explore easy ways to enhance your living spaces, from small fixes to exciting projects. Join me on a journey of making your house a cozy and stylish haven.

It’s here! Your orders have been cut, and you’re moving to a place you can’t yet properly pronounce. That’s alright. We all go through it. You’ll get there. Let’s take a look at some of the things to expect during your first military move. 

moving

PCS? BAH? WTF?!

PCS is the term used for swapping bases. The Permanent Change of Station (or Site, for our retirees) is a command to go forth and prosper at another base. Many families do this every three years, but some may change bases as often as every six months. Moving all over the world is not for the faint of heart. With the uptick in technology, the military members and spouses of today have a better chance of keeping in contact with their loved ones than ever before, but being fifteen hours away from home might still wear on you a bit. It’s alright. It’s all in passing. You’ll be somewhere else soon. 

BAH is your Basic Allowance for Housing. It’s how much the military pays you, based on rank, for rent and utilities. It changes at every base, so be sure to look yours up prior to the move! 

Related story:
8 Ways To Stop House Repossession

PCS? BAH? WTF?!

 

The Moving Team

You won’t be picking your own movers this time around unless you’re doing a DITY move. A do-it-yourself move (or DITY move) means you can hire whomever you like and move on your own schedule. For some with high weight limits, this is easier and may even pocket them a little cash on the side. For those with lower weight limits, hanging out with the military movers are probably your best bet. They won’t tell if you don’t, most of the time.

The Moving Team

Travel and Per Diem

After your belongings are all packed up and in shipment, it’s time to follow them. Whether you’re going across the state or across the world, you’ll be given a set amount of money for each day of travel. In the US military, the standard for driving is between 350 and 400 miles per day. It just depends on the road conditions and your travel route. Unless you’re taking very small children along, or someone medically infirm, this is usually five to six hours of driving per day. Not too bad. 

Related story:
First Crescent Amazing Vacation House in South Africa

Travel and Per Diem

Pets

PCSing with pets is one of the hardest trips to make. Though every member of the family should be included, there are bases that absolutely refuse pets. This means that you must find housing that does allow them. Given the wide variety of places that military members can be stationed, we recommend looking into the pet situation the second that you have orders. Most overseas bases are pet friendly, but you must learn how to ship your pet and begin the process almost immediately. We believe that you can do it. Speak to your on-base vet for assistance. 

pets

Settling In

Whew! So, you’ve just moved across the land at top speed, and you’re already in your new house. Your report date isn’t for a few days, and you don’t really know what to do. We do! Take a breather and settle in. Arrange a few things in your new home, and get to know your new base. If possible, visit the hospital and transfer your records before you or your spouse begins in-processing. It makes it quicker and easier for everyone involved if, heaven forbid, there be an emergency before in-processing begins. Enjoy your new base!

Related story:
Bringing Home Baby: Parental Tips for Getting Through the First Few Months

This post is sponsored by lawrencemoves.com. Is the military sending you to a whole new world? Ask your travel office to contact us! We’d love to help out.

Latest Posts

More Similar Articles Like This