Superior PCS Pay Axed, and Obligatory Authorities Journey Card Use Is Coming for Sailors

Kate Horrell is a finance columnist for

The Navy will quickly require sailors to make use of a Authorities Journey Cost Card (GTCC) for all navy Everlasting Change of Station (PCS) strikes, the service introduced late final yr, whereas additionally utilizing the MyPCS Journey Voucher system for claims and eliminating superior journey pay in most situations.

The change places the Navy in step with the opposite navy providers. Obligatory use of the cardboard begins July 1, 2022. Sailors ought to work with their chain of command to use for a card.

Utilizing the GTCC for PCS strikes could make it simpler for service members to deal with prices incurred throughout strikes while not having to take advances or pay out-of-pocket.

Whereas that sounds nice, the GTCC program and the PCS mandate do trigger concern for a lot of, due to probably sluggish reimbursement and the influence on private credit score scores from not paying the cardboard on time.

That is a fear officers acknowledged of their December announcement, saying that pairing the GTCC with the brand new journey voucher system will give quicker reimbursements.

“Obligatory use of the GTCC for PCS journey bills and digital submission of journey claims by means of MyPCS Journey Voucher will assist the Navy enhance accountability and auditability of funds and reallocate assets for extra well timed journey declare processing,” the discharge states.

Sailors can nonetheless request superior Dislocation Allowance (DLA), however the steerage says exceptions might be made just for dependents who’re touring on separate orders or for sailors who do not qualify for the cardboard.

Sailors and different navy members usually have questions on how they’re supposed to make use of the GTCC throughout their PCS transfer, how the invoice might be paid, what gadgets could be charged to the cardboard and what occurs when there are paperwork issues — all good questions.

However first, a disclaimer: All the time observe the foundations which might be given by your department, your chain of command, or your assist workplace. This info can and does range by department, and might change at any time.

What Can I Cost to My GTCC?

  • Lodging en route between your previous obligation station and your new obligation station
  • Meals en route between your previous obligation station and your new obligation station
  • Short-term lodging at your previous or new obligation station (as lined below the Short-term Lodging Expense/Short-term Lodging Allowance)
  • Gasoline on your personally owned automobile used as transportation for the transfer, or being moved
  • Tolls or ferry charges
  • Rental automobile, if licensed in your PCS orders
  • Personally procured transfer bills (relying in your department)
  • Dislocation allowance (DLA)-type bills

That final one is absolutely tough. Dislocation allowance is a flat charge, based mostly on rank and dependency standing and payable to everybody who strikes. Whereas its objective as said by the Pentagon is to defray the prices of leaving an previous residence and establishing a brand new residence, there are not any particular guidelines about what it may and can’t be used for. You do not have to elucidate it to anybody. You possibly can actually take your dislocation allowance to a on line casino and play blackjack with it. (Please do not.)

However whenever you use your GTCC for DLA-type bills, there may be accountability. So what ought to it’s used for? I am not a lawyer however, based mostly on my private expertise with 9 navy strikes, listed below are some concepts of issues which might be in all probability affordable bills on this class:

  • Having the carpets cleaned whenever you transfer out of your previous home
  • The fundamentals of that Goal run whenever you get to your new residence: rest room brushes, shelf liner, bathe curtains, curtain rods, cleansing provides, and many others.
  • Utility deposits

What Objects Can not Be Charged to My GTCC?

  • Private bills that aren’t a part of the PCS transfer
  • Airfare, which have to be booked by means of the suitable workplace on your department of service
  • Leisure of any sort
  • Medical bills, even when they occur throughout the PCS
  • Any private journey days throughout the transfer/depart en route
  • Personally procured transfer bills (relying in your department)

How Does the Invoice Get Paid?

You need to submit a journey declare whenever you arrive at your new obligation station, and the system you employ for doing so depends upon your department. Whereas your card must be set to mission vital standing for a transfer and never require rapid fee, it is nonetheless not a good suggestion to delay your declare.

You can be reimbursed as much as the restrict of your allowances, together with short-term lodging expense/short-term lodging entitlement, dislocation allowance, financial allowance in lieu of transportation (mileage), and per diem for journey days. Any quantity that exceeds these allowances is your accountability. When you have a dislocation allowance remaining after the reimbursement, that must be paid to you.

The Authorities Journey Cost Card does clear up some PCS issues, however it is very important use it correctly and file your declare in a well timed method after arriving at your new obligation station. Consider it as one other software in your navy life toolbox.

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