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February 08, 2013

News

New fees in effect for members of U.S. forces to bring pets into Germany

HEIDELBERG, Germany (U.S. Army Europe Office of the Chief of Public Affairs) — Members of the U.S. forces community who bring their pets along when they arrive in Germany for assignment will be charged a fee payable in Euros (€) by German authorities, effective Feb. 1.

The fee will be charged during arrivals at Ramstein Air Base and Frankfurt International Airport.

At Ramstein an examination fee of €55 (about $75 U.S. dollars according to current exchange rates) per pet owner will be charged for all pets imported into Germany from outside the European Union (EU). Kaiserslautern County officials said the fee is being levied in accordance with EU regulations designed to prevent the introduction and dissemination of rabies.

Upon arrival at Ramstein, pets will be examined by veterinary officials near the passenger terminal’s baggage claim area. Owners may pay the fee by credit card only.

Owners arriving with their pets at Frankfurt International Airport also will pay a fee. That fee is €35 (about $48 U.S. dollars) per accompanied pet or €55 for an unaccompanied pet, and increases by 50 percent for pets that arrive on a weekend or holiday.

Payment of the fee is the responsibility of the pet owner, and cannot be claimed for reimbursement on an official travel voucher, according to officials with the U.S. Army Europe Office of the Judge Advocate (OJA). However, while OJA experts said the fee is prohibited from reimbursement under the provisions of the Department of Defense Joint Travel Regulations, pet owners may be able to claim the fee as a deductible moving expense on their federal income tax returns.

While Ramstein and Frankfurt are the only locations currently slated to begin imposing the fee Feb. 1, because it is based on EU regulation other EU ports of entry could enact similar fees in the future.

Anyone in the Fort McCoy community with questions about relocation issues can call the Army Community Service Center at 608-388-3505 or visit building 2111.

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