PCS: plan ahead

SPANGDAHLEM AIR BASE, GERMANY -- It's summer and your permanent change of station is fast approaching. You feel the anxiety building up. Don't fret! The 52nd Logistics Readiness Squadron personal property office is here to help. There are a couple of ways to alleviate that anxiety. 

The first way is to plan in advance; as soon as you get your orders head over to our office in building 128. You will be greeted by our logistics professionals who will make your transition out of Spangdahlem as painless as possible. The second way is to be prepared to execute your plan. You will need to have a few things in mind to do this. 

When you come to our office, remember to have a copy of your PCS orders and an idea of the dates you'd like your household goods packed and picked up. Be prepared to allow extra days to pack if you exceed the moving company's daily pack capability (approximately 4,000 pounds per day). Our office will work with you to establish practical pack and pick-up dates. 

We can't emphasize the importance of obtaining PCS orders from the Military Personnel Flight. Your orders contain vital information for us to commit services. Without orders, we cannot make any arrangements with the moving companies. Please ensure you contact the MPF for help with obtaining orders. 

After you obtain PCS orders, you must determine what type of shipments you would like to make. For example, if you are PCSing back to the Continental U.S., you are authorized your full weight allowance commensurate with your rank and the Joint Federal Travel Regulation. As part of this entitlement, you can make a household goods shipment (all major appliances, furniture items, knick-knacks, kitchen ware, etc.) and an unaccompanied baggage, also known as "hold baggage," shipment (items of necessity you will need to get you started at your new location such as pots, pans, dishes and linens). Additionally, you may request a wine shipment. Many people have questions on these. Ask for details when you come in to see us. If you are PCSing to locations outside the CONUS, your entitlements may vary based on each location. In any case, the personal property office will help determine your entitlements. 

After determining your entitlements, we will work with you and the moving companies to schedule your pick-up dates. Time is of the essence. The summer peak season can saturate the German moving companies, causing blacked-out dates. Remember, the moving companies service not only Spangdahlem, but also other military communities in Germany. Your primary pack/pick-up dates may not occur until two to four weeks from your briefing date. Have alternate pack/pick-up dates in mind when you come to your briefing. Mass briefings are conducted every day, but the appointments can fill up faster than the pick-up dates. If you plan in advance and maintain some flexibility, you will be able to execute your plan and have a successful move. 

Our professional counselors are standing by to assist with all of your questions. Stop by our office located in building 128, first floor. Duty hours are from 8 a.m. - 4 p.m., Monday through Friday. We are closed on weekends, holidays, training days and Wing down days. The office can be reached at 452-6068, 452-5694 or 452-5695.