Car PCS: What Do When Your Vehicle Is Late

Car keys (Stock image)

You've trusted your car to the Pentagon's personally owned vehicle (POV) contractor and it's off on a boat, sailing the world on its way to you. But what do you do if your vehicle doesn't arrive at the destination Vehicle Processing Center (VPC) by its Required Delivery Date (RDD)?

The answer is an inconvenience claim with the shipping company, and the provisions for handling these situations is set out in the contract.

Vehicle rental

For the first seven days after a vehicle's RDD, reimbursement for a rental car is provided by the service and is capped at $30 per day. That claim is made through the same transportation office that handles your travel claims.

After the first seven days, responsibility for costs reverts to the contractor, International Auto Logistics (IAL). There are two ways to handle this: you can rent your own vehicle, and file a claim for reimbursement, or you can have the contractor organize a rental on your behalf.

Renting your own vehicle

If you decide to rent your own vehicle, keep in mind that there are restrictions.


  • Standard or intermediate vehicle rental
  • Loss/Damage and liability insurance coverage
  • Infant car seats and/or booster seats
  • Any and all concession fees and taxes that are applied to the rental rates
  • One additional driver (spouse or family member).

Not covered:

  • Upgrades
  • Satellite radio
  • Navigation systems or GPS
  • Bike racks or luggage carriers

Fuel costs (unless prior approval has been given).

The claims for self-rental can be found at the IAL website. Claims may be made in person at the delivering VPC or via email at

Letting IAL get you a rental

The other option is to allow IAL to organize the rental for you, and pay for the rental directly. This isn't going to be as immediate as renting a vehicle yourself; IAL asks that you allow up to 48 hours to organize a rental. If you want to proceed this way, you are instructed to email with the details of your situation.

If at all possible, I recommend that you pursue this way of getting your rental car. Even if you've already rented a car yourself, I recommend that you continue trying to get through to someone to authorize a directly-billed rental car for you. First, it means you're not paying up front and not knowing when you'll be reimbursed. Second, it provides for the extra insurances that most of us decline to save money.


The contractor is also liable for lodging when a vehicle is not ready by its RDD. Reimbursement begins one day after the RDD. Reimbursement is made based upon the location's per diem rates listed in the Joint Federal Travel Regulations.

Claims are made using the same claim form listed above, and can be submitted at the delivering VPC or via email

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