Poll: Would You Split Your PCS If It Didn’t Cost You?


Newly proposed legislation would allow military families to not only split their PCSes (which many already do), but not have to spend extra cash to do it.

Right now military families stateside can PCS themselves two shifts if they want to. Sometimes they decide to do that because kids or a spouse are still in school or because a spouse needs to hold onto her job for just a little while longer (or wants to go early to find one). But they can’t get their household goods moved in a split shipment (unless they are doing a DITY), they are going to be paying out of pocket for at least one set of lodging, and if they live on base they might get the boot if their stay overlaps their spouse’s orders elsewhere. If they are arriving to a new duty station early, they probably can’t get housing until their orders date.

Splitting an overseas move is even more complicated. The military might give you permission to move in two shifts, but they are only going to pay dislocation allowance once. That means, again, someone is going to be footing the bill and it isn’t going to be Uncle Sam.

New legislation that lawmakers hope will be included in the 2017 National Defense Authorization Act (yes, I know that’s a really long time from now) would change that. Instead of making it a total pain to move in two shifts, qualifying families could apply to have their household goods split and for the military to put the service member up for as long as six months.

Want to know more or whether or not you would qualify? Read the news story here.

Many military spouses who have commented on the proposal on social media have either said they already do a split PCS without any additional financial help or that this won’t help them at all — what they really need, they said, is to not be moved every two to three years.

So I’m wondering – if this legislation passes will it help you? Take our poll and then check out what other readers have said.


About the Author

Amy Bushatz
Amy is the editor in chief of Military.com’s spouse and family blog SpouseBuzz.com. A journalist by trade, Amy also covers spouse and family news for Military.com where she is the managing editor of spouse and family content. An Army wife and mother of two, Amy has been featured as a subject matter expert on CNN.com, NPR, Fox News, NBC, CBS, ABC and BBC as well as in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal and Washington Post. Follow her on twitter @amybushatz.
  • Guest

    Personally as a full-time working spouse this would make things tremendously less financially stressful for my husband and me. I have been blessed with a career that enables me to find work most anywhere in the country but often finding that perfect job means I need to accelerate my move a little earlier that my husband’s orders (to start working right away) or that I need to stay with my old employer a few extra months until something opens up wherever we are moving. Maintaining 2 households is never my ideal situation but it helps me long term in my career progression. However every time we do this it costs my family a considerable amount of money that we could be putting in savings. We are very lucky that we have been able to afford this so far, but I know many families for whom this is not an option at all. I’d love it if the Army would just quit moving us every 2-3 years but that seems unlikely to happen so I think this bill would be a great addition.

  • NavyJag907

    I went to a similar conference for the Navy a hundred years ago and it was incredible. We had war fighters talking to social workers and pediatricians to commanders and so on. It was a great help to me as a staff judge advocate. This will be a great conference for the Army.

  • Cassandra

    We are currently in that situation right now. Our girls and I are staying behind to complete school and for me to work a little longer. We have to pay rent at our current base after he PCS so we are getting a small apartment. We will be selling the car I will be driving and giving away the mattresses we will be sleeping on. I am not sure what we will do for a table and will give away the old tv that will not work overseas when we leave. What if we didn’t have this older stuff to get ride of, and how many people don’t have that. It would be much more cost effective for 2 seperate moves so I have a table and pots and pans, dishes! Glam camping for a few months doesn’t sound fun!

  • Guest

    It’s a waste of money.

    In 2017 they are talking about reducing overall compensation for a mil-mil while increasing compensation for mil-civ, that’s crazy.

    Here we are taking away from two people providing services to this nation, and giving that money plus some to dependents with no benefit to the service.

    This is just going to make moves cost more, resulting in fewer PCS’s (Great if you are in San Diego, awful if you are in Fallon), and clog up both lodging and housing.

    The military pays for your move, it provides lending closets, it pays your lodging expenses while PCS’ing, it gives you mileage costs on your car (or cars) and it gives you DLA to offset other costs.

    This all has to be budget neutral, so what are you going to take to fund this?

    We know you want to take tricare benefits, and reduce mil-mil compensation, but what else?

    Would you be ok with being stuck at Ft Irwin for six years instead of three, or maybe everyone should give up their DLA, perdiem, MALT, and TLE/TLA.

  • M Meier

    We were at Fort Eustis for 14 years! My husband did have a one-year remote PCS (to the Middle East) during that time, but our son and I stayed in the same house all that time. What the military needs to do is stop moving people every few years – ESPECIALLY OFFICERS!!!! That would save a lot!