Permanent Change of Station (PCS) season is upon us along with all the associated activities that go with it. It’s a busy, spinning time of learning about the new duty station while wrapping up things at the losing station. There are packing decisions to make, travel arrangements to make, utility and bank accounts to close, withdrawing children from school, and saying goodbye to friends and associates we are about to leave behind. PCS time can also bring financial stress as moving can be expensive. Military members performing funded permanent duty travel are entitled to monetary compensation to ease the expense based on multiple factors involved in the move. PCS travel entitlements and benefits are typically not taxable.

PCS entitlements are set by federal law and covered in the Joint Travel Regulations (JTR), DoD Financial Management Regulation, and service guidance. Be sure to work with your local finance or personnel office to determine your entitlements and requirements for collecting.

Entitlements for a Military Member Performing Permanent Duty Travel

1. Per Diem: A daily allowance to cover the cost of meals and incidental expenses. Dependents are entitled to 50 to 75% of the member’s entitlement amount

2. Lodging Expenses: Reimbursement for the cost of lodging while on travel orders.

3. Temporary Lodging Expense (TLE): A reimbursement for the cost of lodging and meals within CONUS for up to 14 days in a hotel or temporary quarters when moving to a new duty station. Lodging can be at the losing and/or the gaining station.

4. Temporary Lodging Allowance (TLA): An entitlement to partially cover the higher-than-normal cost of lodging in temporary quarters when departing from or moving to a new OCONUS duty station.

5. Monetary Allowance in Lieu of Transportation (MALT): A reimbursement for driving a privately owned vehicle instead of using government-provided transportation. Mileage can be paid for up to two privately owned cars.

6. Dislocation Allowance (DLA): A monetary allowance to help offset the costs associated with moving, such as security deposits and utility connection fees. The 2024 DLA rates range from $1,724.50 to $5,886.90 and are based on the member’s grade and dependent status.  

7. Household Goods (HHG) Shipment: The government will pay for the cost of shipping your household goods to your new duty station. The amount of weight authorized to be moved is dependent on the member’s rank and family size.

8. Do-It-Yourself (DITY) Move, which is now called a Personally Procured Move (PPM): This is a type of move where a military member or their family members pack, load, and transport their household goods (HHG) themselves, rather than hiring a professional moving company. The entitlement is based on a percentage of the cost of a government move for the same amount of weight. PPM move entitlements are taxable and taxes are typically withheld and a W2 form is provided.

9. Storage of Household Goods: If you are unable to move into your new residence right away, the government will pay for the cost of storing your household goods.

Some PCS travel expenses will require a written receipt for reimbursement. Verify with your finance or personnel office prior to travel to see what receipts are required.

PCS moves are never easy. By packing some patience and resilience with your luggage and household goods you’ll soon be settled, getting to know your new location, mission, co-workers, and neighbors!

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