March 17, 2021 —
Q: What allowances am I authorized if I am returning from temporary duty travel or deployment, and am ordered into isolation or quarantine by a public health, medical, or DoD official at a port of entry or debarkation, including while awaiting a COVID-19 test result -- before proceeding to my permanent duty station?
A: You may be authorized standard travel and transportation allowances in accordance with JTR Chapter 2 while awaiting transportation. Your temporary duty travel orders could be amended to extend the temporary duty assignment.
Q: May I be reimbursed for the cost of obtaining a COVID-19 test for my dependent that is required for official travel?
A: Maybe, but only if the test is mandated by law for official travel to or from an OCONUS destination and is not available through a Federal dispensary. You may only be reimbursed for the cost of the COVID-19 test and not for the cost of the office visit. If a free test is available through a federal dispensary, medical treatment facility, or the cost is covered by insurance, then no reimbursement for a test is authorized. You may not be reimbursed for the cost of the COVID-19 test when performing “transportation only” funded leave travel, such as emergency leave and Funded Environmental and Morale Leave.
Q: Can I be reimbursed for the cost of obtaining a COVID-19 test that is required for my official travel to or from an OCONUS destination?
A: You may only be reimbursed for the cost of the COVID-19 test and not for the cost of the office visit. If a free test is available through a federal dispensary or medical treatment facility, or the cost is covered by insurance, then no test reimbursement is authorized. You may not be reimbursed for the cost of the COVID-19 test when performing “transportation only”-funded leave travel, such as emergency leave and Funded Environment Morale Leave.
Q: Are all air passengers arriving to the U.S. from a foreign country required to get tested for COVID-19?
A: On January 12, 2021, CDC announced an order requiring all air passengers arriving to the U.S. from a foreign country to get tested no more than three days before their flight departs and to present the negative result or documentation of having recovered from COVID-19 to the airline before boarding the flight. Air passengers will also be required to confirm that the information they present is true in the form of an attestation.
Q: I received the first of the COVID vaccinations can I PCS and receive the other vaccine at my new PDS?
A: No. Both doses of the COVID vaccine must done at the same location/facility.
Q: What kind of help is available for members and families delayed during PCS?
A: The answer depends on the member’s situation. See the Joint Travel Regulations (JTR) for details, but in summary:
For service members: If a service member is ordered to isolate or quarantine after detaching or signing out of the unit, then per diem may be authorized for both the Service member and dependents at the location specified in the orders. If the service member is ordered to travel to an alternate location, then per diem may be authorized. If a Service member is ordered to isolate or quarantine after arrival at the new PDS and before TLE begins, then the member may be authorized per diem. Per Diem authorizations are in accordance with JTR, Chapter 5, Part A. If lodging in kind or meals in kind are provided, then per diem is not payable.
For dependents: If the service member’s dependents are ordered to isolate or quarantine after detaching or signing out of unit, then per diem may be authorized at the location specified on the orders. If the dependents are required to travel to an alternate location to await transportation, then standard PCS allowances are authorized. If the dependents are ordered to isolate or quarantine after arrival at the new PDS and before TLE begins, then the dependents may be authorized per diem. . Per Diem authorizations are in accordance with JTR, Chapter 5, Part A. If lodging in-kind or meals in-kind are provided, then per diem is not payable. If dependents do not remain in place awaiting transportation, then per diem is not authorized
G3 Q: I received PCS orders, can I take leave for house hunting at my new station?
A: Previous restrictions on administrative absences for the purpose of PCS relocation and familiarization (house hunting) have been removed. For more information, please refer to the most recent PCS/HHG SITREP ALCOAST.
Q: For students who are on a DOD facility attending training in which a PCS was executed to be there, are they required to follow DOD guidance to remain in place until DOD authorizes PCS again?
A: Coast Guard members are authorized to build and execute moves per IAW the latest PCS/HHG SITREP ALCOAST. Students who cannot move due to household goods shipment issues should contact their assignment officer and FORCECOM to develop an alternate plan. This plan might require the member to remain at the DOD facility.
Q: I am a GS employee pending PCS orders for a move OCONUS. I have to sell my house. What are my next steps?
A: Civilian PCS moves may continue; however, delays may occur. Selectees may request delays due to health risks, challenges with the real estate market, and travel concerns. Contact your hiring official to coordinate with the selecting official to determine if the duties of the position can be performed at a Coast Guard unit in your current duty location or if telework arrangements are possible. Hiring officials will be contacted by HR specialists prior to establishing firm start dates to discuss potential local challenges.
Q: I am transferring to/from a foreign country or foreign territory. What is different for my PCS?
A: All foreign PCS is authorized as long as DoD or Chief of Mission (as applicable) restrictions are met. Members should carry out PCS after receiving guidance from their receiving commands.
Q: I am reporting in/out of D17, Alaska and want to drive my car in my PCS travel. Can I go through Canada during my PCS travel?
A: Yes. Members PCSing to/from Alaska are permitted to transit through Canada on their way to their next permanent duty station. Members PCSing through other domestic/OCONUS locations will need to ship their motor vehicles. Members should visit https://www.pcsmypov.com to coordinate shipments of their personally owned vehicle (POV) and can watch the helpful “Turning in Your POV” YouTube video for guidance on the process as well as view the latest PCS and HHG ALCOAST.
Members traveling to or through Canada must also e-mail D-17-DG-M-K-BaseKodiak-Admin@uscg.mil as soon as possible, but no less than 10 days prior to the start of their travel, with the following information:
- First M. Last name of Service Member
- First M. Last name of all authorized travelers on orders
- D17 Unit of assigned/departed
- Type of Travel (PCS departing or PCS reporting to Alaska)
- Estimated date of entry into/departure from Canada
- Canadian Border Crossing/Port of Entry
- Estimated date of entry into/departure from U.S.
- U.S. Border Crossing/Port of Entry
- Vehicle make, model and license plate info
- Phone number while in a travel status
Base Kodiak will then transmit this information to the U.S. Defense Attache Office at the U.S. Embassy in Ottawa.
Q: Does the Float Plan need to be completed prior to receiving PCS Orders?
A: No. PCS Orders should be completed and issued as soon as possible. Moves should then be promptly uploaded in the Defense Personal Property System (DPS). The Float Plan should be finalized approximately 10 days prior to the anticipated day of departure and reviewed for a “go-no go” decision on the departure day. This process will ensure the plan incorporates all relevant policies, notices, or travel restrictions and responds to real-time conditions.
Q: Am I allowed to take leave during my PCS transfer this year?
A: Domestic leave for all Military Personnel is authorized. All personnel must be aware of changing conditions in locations they intend to travel to and through when making travel decisions. Members are reminded to follow CDC guidelines for safe interactions in public whenever on leave. All leave en route must be included in the member’s Float Plan. For more information, please refer to the most recent travel and leave ALCOAST 096/21 SITREP 2.
Q: Who is authorized to sign for command approval of the Float Plan?
A: Commands are authorized to delegate approving authority E7 or above. The Float Plan was created to ensure the safe transfer of member in the heightened-risk environment. Leaders at all levels should be engaged with their transferring members to ensure they identify the best solutions for each member’s specific scenario and individual needs.
Q: Will the Coast Guard begin requiring Float Plans every year from now on?
A: The Float Plan was designed to meet the specific and unique challenges created by the COVID-19 pandemic. Given the ongoing state of the pandemic, the use of Float Plan is available for all, but required for members with less than 3 PCS moves, and those PCSing to/from Alaska, Hawaii, Guam, Puerto Rico, USVI, PATFORSWA or other OCONUS duty stations.
Q: I’m not moving this year; do I need to complete a Float Plan?
A: No. Members not in receipt of PCS orders do not need to complete a Float Plan. Members executing fleet-ups and local “no-cost” moves are encouraged to communicate with their respective commands and utilize the normal process of negotiating departing/reporting dates.
Q: Are units authorized to create and use their own Float Plan forms?
A: No. The only authorized Float Plan can always be found on the Coast Guard’s Coronavirus website, though previously submitted/approved Float Plans may be used. We will continue to update the Float Plan based on lessons learned.
Q: What actions should be taken if a member or dependents exhibit flu-like symptoms while en route?
A: Members and dependents can contact the Tricare (MHS) Nurse Advice Line: 1-800-874-2273, option 1, or contact their healthcare provider to check symptoms. For general information, you can follow the CDC guidelines listed here: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/if-you-are-sick/steps-when-sick.html. Members should then immediately contact their unit POCs to update them on their status and to coordinate next steps. The PCS Assist Team is always available to offer Coast Guard-specific guidance and the latest resources concerning PCS policies and entitlements.
Q: Why is there a requirement to ensure a specific communication plan during travel? Is this necessary?
A: Just as ops and position checks are critical to identifying the location and welfare of a search and rescue crew, regular check-ins will ensure positive contact between units and members. Missed communication can serve as early warning signs that something may be wrong. Additionally, regular check-ins will ensure the PCS’ing member is alerted if conditions change along the way or at the new unit.
Q: Can I book both hotels and short-term rentals (e.g., AirBnB or VRBO) during my PCS travel this year?
A: If family-type government quarters are not occupied IAW the JTR, 050601, table 5-16, then reimbursement for commercial or private lodging, a furnished or unfurnished apartment, house, mobile home, or recreational vehicle is authorized