|By Elaine Sanchez, American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, D.C. — With a busier-than-usual military moving season about
to kick into high gear, officials are asking servicemembers to book
their moving dates early and to keep flexibility in mind when doing so.
The military moved more than 230,000 shipments last summer alone, and
this year officials are expecting even more due to the base realignment
and closure (BRAC) process, said John Johnson, chief of the personal
property branch for the Army’s Military Surface Deployment and
Distribution Command. The command is the lead agent for the Defense
Department’s Personal Property Program.
Johnson said he’s expecting an additional 10,000 moves this summer due
to BRAC. This moving cluster can create a backlog for officials, Johnson
said. On average, the military moves about 600,000 shipments a year, and
more than a third of those moves take place over the summer.
Johnson said a system redesign is in the works, but in the meantime, he
recommends that people watch the video posted on
http://www.move.mil, which explains in
detail how to navigate the online claim system.
Officials also have directed training efforts at moving experts, Johnson
said, including the introduction of a webinar series that covers the
storage and transit process for personal property shipment offices and
Among efforts to increase capacity, officials now allow carriers to use
portable movement storage containers similar to those used for
commercial shipments, Johnson said. In the past, he explained, the
military required household goods to be moved in “loose loaded” or in
wooden crates with specific dimensions. However, in the commercial
sector, carriers use multiple types of containers.
“We’re now allowing carriers to use what containers they normally use to
move military members,” he said. By doing so, he added, officials hope
to increase the capacity of carriers qualified to conduct military
People need to book moves early, particularly if they want to lock down
a holiday weekend. And, above all, he said, they should remain flexible
When people are notified of a move, Johnson said, the first stop should
be their local personal property shipment office, and then the Move.Mil
Military OneSource also offers Families a host of online moving
resources, including “Plan My Move,” which features a moving calendar
and travel and arrival checklists, and “Military Installations,” which
links Families to information about their new base and the local