Here we are, in the midst of our fourth move in four years. This will be our longest move at around 1700 miles. We also have the added bonus of moving into our own place with orders that are longer than six months. It’s the little things. Setting up your move can seem like a daunting task, especially if it’s your first. Your first stop should always be the transportation office at your post or base. They have the most resources for you and can help with the process. You’ll have to have orders in hand (not just a request for orders), and you’ll have to make a few key decisions.
1. What kind of move. The military offers two (for the most part): DITY vs. full. A DITY move is a do-it-yourself option. You are responsible for packing, shipping, and unpacking your household goods. A full move involves contracted movers packing, shipping, and unpacking your stuff. If you are moving OCONUS or if you have a quick turnaround (like when Mac and I left Fort Gordon to move to Virginia), you might not have the option of choosing between a DITY or a full move. And since the government works with moving companies, you do lose a bit of control because you’re on the company’s schedule.
*Just keep in mind that the moving company is responsible for anything that breaks in transit, and they will reimburse you for its value. If you move your own stuff and break it, you have to replace it.
2. Money. With a DITY move, the military will cut you a check based on the mileage traveled, the weight of your goods, and whether or not you hire your own movers. Technically, you can make money if you can move and travel under what the government will repay you. Check with your transportation office for the most current rates. With a full move, the government pays the movers directly based on their contract, and you only receive the standard travel voucher.
3. Your timeline. A DITY move allows you to move as soon as you want after clearing post because you’re moving everything. You can take as short or as long to get to your destination. With a full move, the moving company provides you with dates for packing, loading, and unloading. Unloading can be a range or a no later than date. You can’t leave until they finish (because you have to sign paperwork), and you must arrive at your next post before they do.
4. How much work you want to / can do. Obviously, DITY moves require you or your husband and a few friends to do the heavy lifting and moving. Full moves, you can literally sit and do nothing.
I personally go the full move route. It’s nice to not have to worry about packing or renting a U-Haul. Also, we get money if stuff does break (we did have a bookcase break on the move to Georgia).
What would y’all add to this list? Any more advice for setting up a move?