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SDDC Offers Tips for Summer PCS


Servicemembers, Federal employees and their families slated to move this summer can enhance their permanent change of station experience with proper planning, attention to detail and flexibility, ensuring a smoother move for their household goods.

Military Surface Deployment and Distribution Command's Personal Property Directorate manages about 520,000 moves per year, of which about 225,000 occur during the summer peak moving season.

"As soon as you receive your permanent change of station orders, you should start your move process," said John Johnson, branch chief for SDDC's Personal Property Directorate Quality Assurance Division. "Requesting your pickup and delivery dates as soon as possible will ensure a better chance of getting the dates you want." 

There are two ways to manage a government move based on local policies. 

The first is the traditional visit to the local installation Transportation Office or Personal Property Shipping Office to receive a relocation briefing and start the move process.

The alternative is to use the Defense Personal Property System, or DPS, which is accessed through the website, move.mil. This website is the portal for DPS and the one-stop shop where members can completely manage their move process.

Members using this portal for the first time will find online training videos and presentations explaining how to navigate through the move process.

PCS Dates

  • Moving between May through August is extremely busy - Memorial Day to July 4 is busiest moving time of the year to move.
  • SDDC manages about 520,000 booked moves per year, of which about 225,000 occur during the summer peak moving season.
  • Move dates are not confirmed until you coordinate with your Transportation Service Provider.
  • Requested pickup/delivery dates are not confirmed until coordinated with your moving company.
  • Pack/pickup/delivery dates, normally scheduled on weekdays – you/designated rep must be available 8 a.m. and 5 p.m.

General Advice

  • For a smoother move during peak moving season, be flexible with move dates, and plan for unforeseen circumstances.
  • A little preparation and flexibility can enhance your moving experience.
  • SDDC suggests creating a personal move calendar - checklists, phone numbers, and dates.
  • Transportation/Shipping Office is your primary point of contact for customer service.
  • Once you get orders, immediately start your moving process to help lock in preferred pickup/delivery dates.
  • Sign up on Move.mil - places you in direct contact with your moving company to manage your move.
  • Videos on managing your move are available on Move.mil.
  • The first stop for assistance should always be your local Personal Property Shipping Office or Installation Transportation Office.

Packing and weighing

  • You can request a reweigh of your personal property shipment at no cost to you.
  • Packing and loading for multiple shipments should be scheduled on separate days to avoid confusion.
  • If you are making more than one shipment, make sure you clearly separate them at your residence.

Related Topics

PCS Relocation

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