How Long Do You Have to Stay in the Navy if Executing PCS Orders?

Posted on Updated on

Question: If I execute PCS orders, how long do I have to stay in the Navy before I can retire or resign?

Answer: This is something called “retainability” and is detailed in paragraph 9 (on page 6) of OPNAVINST 1300.15B – NAVY MILITARY PERSONNEL ASSIGNMENT POLICY. Here’s the quick and dirty version.

It all depends on where you’re coming from and going to:

  • Coming from OCONUS to CONUS = You must wait 1 year before you can get out of the Navy.
  • Going to a CONUS operational billet = also 1 year.
  • Coming from CONUS to a shore/non-operational billet = 2 years.
  • Going OCONUS anywhere = You must serve the full tour length, which depends on your specialty and where you’re going. I could try to explain tour lengths, but it can get complicated. If you’re not sure what your tour length is, ask your Detailer.

More Sailor-Friendly Options for PCS Moves

Posted on Updated on

From Navy Personnel Command Public Affairs

MILLINGTON, Tenn (NNS) — Navy Personnel Command (NPC) leaders announced today that they are expanding options and capabilities offered to further improve the Permanent Change of Station (PCS) move experience for Sailors and their families.  This comes only a few weeks after the release of MyPCS Mobile and more capabilities are expected in the near future.

As part of the Navy’s ongoing pay and personnel transformation efforts, NAVADMIN 184/19 announces a new pilot program in which participating Sailors can use the Government Travel Charge Card (GTCC) for PCS move travel expenses.  The initial pilot population includes Active Duty Sailors who are existing GTCC cardholders, executing CONUS-to-CONUS moves with less than 30 days of combined travel and Temporary Duty under Instruction, and who are single or traveling with accompanied dependents.

“We are providing Sailors with more choice and control during the PCS move process by providing them with the option to use their GTCC for PCS-related travel expenses,” said Rear Adm. Jeff Hughes, NPC commander.

“We want Sailors to have the funds necessary to support their move readily available either through use of a requested electronic funds transfer/direct deposit (EFT/DD) travel advance or by using the GTCC,” Hughes said, adding, “It’s their choice based on what works best for their particular situation.”

Participating Sailors may now choose to use either the GTCC or request an EFT/DD travel advance to support move related costs; however, both may not be used simultaneously.

Sailors who elect to participate in the pilot program may use the GTCC for temporary lodging at their old or new permanent duty station, fuel for privately owned vehicles (POVs) used as part of PCS travel, and for lodging and meals en route to their new duty station.  Additionally, if the Sailor is entitled, the GTCC may be used for Dislocation Allowance (DLA) related expenses normally associated with the establishment of a new household.

This pilot period allows us time to evaluate the rollout through all phases of the PCS process, receive feedback from participating Sailors and commands, and fix any unknown issues prior to expansion to the widest possible population of Sailors in the near future.

Additionally, NAVADMIN 183/19 announces the release of Lean Orders and a PCS Entitlements Calculator.  Lean orders is a streamlined, simplified, and plain language orders format, providing a Sailor and family everything they need to know to execute a move on a few screens on a mobile device.  Lean Orders and the full text orders will both be available in MyPCS Mobile and on MyNavy Portal (MNP).  A PCS Entitlements Calculator will also be available to provide Sailors a tool to easily determine their PCS travel entitlements.  The intent is for a Sailor and their Command Pay and Personnel Administrator (CPPA) to use this tool during the initial PCS planning phase, which may influence what options the Sailor may pursue regarding advances or card use.  It is also useful when a Sailor fills out their travel claim at their new permanent duty station to ensure the claim disbursement is the correct amount.

“Simplifying the PCS process for Sailors is a priority area of effort within the MyNavy HR Transformation effort,” said Ann Stewart, Director, NPC Pay and Personnel Management Department, adding, “All of these new services are a direct result of what we are hearing from Sailors and their families during numerous fleet engagements.  We’re listening and rapidly improving processes and fielding capabilities to best resource our Sailors and reduce the administrative burden on them, so they can focus on readiness, lethality, and improving their life/work balance.”

It is vital that Sailors work with their CPPA and GTCC Agency Program Coordinator when pursuing available options for their PCS move planning and execution.  The MyNavy Career Center (MNCC) Contact Center is also a 24/7 option and may be contacted via email: askmncc@navy.mil or by phone at (833) 330-MNCC (6622).

Get more information about the Navy from US Navy facebook or twitter.

For more news from Chief of Naval Personnel, visit www.navy.mil/local/cnp/.

PCS Move Improvements

Posted on

I know no one wants to read a NAVADMIN, but this one details some pretty good changes for those PCSing:



R 171240Z JUL 19









RMKS/1.  This NAVADMIN provides Sailors and their families with information 
to assist in planning and executing their Permanent Change of Station (PCS) 
moves and provides information regarding upcoming improvements to the PCS 
process and introduction of new tools.

2.  Sailors can reduce out-of-pocket expenses during a PCS move by taking 
advantage of the travel entitlements available to them in advance of their 
move.  Travel advances are designed to assist Sailors with PCS travel 
expenses.  This includes funding assistance for mileage, meals and lodging.  
If you are about to make a PCS move, talk to your Command Pay and Personnel 
Administrator (CPPA) to help you decide if a travel advance is the right 
thing for you and your family.  Special consideration should be given to 
those moving to an overseas duty station or to a location with a higher than 
average cost of living.

3.  Spouse Licensure Reimbursement allows spouses to have certain employment 
licenses or certification costs reimbursed up to $500 when necessary as a 
result of a PCS move.  See NAVADMIN 134/19 for more information.

4.  Additional PCS move improvements are coming in three phases:
    a.  Phase One (July 2019).
        (1) MyPCS Mobile is a mobile-enabled website accessible on personal 
and work mobile devices, tablets, laptops and desktops.
Available now, this tool provides additional flexibility and access to a 
personalized checklist tailored for an individual Sailors PCS move as well as 
the ability to opt-in and immediately get on the waitlist for government 
housing and childcare services at their new duty station for those Sailors 
under Active Duty PCS orders.
Sailors can generate their checklist online at any time and tasks are listed 
chronologically to improve the overall experience for Sailors and their 
dependents.  If a Sailor does not have a set of Active Duty PCS orders 
presently, they can still explore the functionality of the checklist through 
an on-line demonstration of the capability on MyPCS Mobile.
        (2) Sailors will be able to login to MyPCS Mobile at any time through 
the Navy App Locker at https://www.applocker.navy.mil or MyNavy Portal (MNP) 
website at https://my.navy.mil.  MNP will have quick links available on the 
homepage Sailors can use to login to MyPCS Mobile and save the website as a 
favorite on the browser of their choice.  By downloading the Navy App Locker 
for either Android or Apple devices, Sailors can quickly access the MyPCS 
Mobile and other Navy-sponsored content.  Sailors can access the MyPCS Mobile 
website without a Common Access Card (CAC), using commercial grade Multi-
Factor Authentication (MFA) credentials for security.
        (3) To set up CAC-free access, log into MNP on a CAC-enabled machine.  
Your name should appear at the top of the page.  Click on your name, select 
my account, then select the instructions for CAC- free setup.  Follow the 
steps for either Apple iOS or Google Android to authenticate your identity 
under the instructions tab.  NOTE:
This is a one-time event and allows the user to establish their secure MFA 
account to log into the CAC-less applications or websites.  The mobile device 
of the user must have access to either WiFi or cellular data services to 
complete the process.
        (4) PCS Entitlements Calculator is a tool to assist Sailors budget 
for travel-related PCS expenses and it will be available on MNP with a 
release date outlined in an upcoming NAVADMIN.
    b.  Phase Two (August 2019)
        (1) A new format for PCS orders called lean orders will be released 
in early August and available in MyPCS Mobile and on MNP for Sailors on 
Active Duty PCS orders.  This is a streamlined, simplified and plain language 
orders format, providing Sailors and their families everything they need to 
know to execute a move on a few screens on a mobile device.  The full text 
orders will also be available.
        (2) In early August, some Sailors who have a government travel charge 
card (GTCC) will have the option to participate in a pilot program to use the 
GTCC for all PCS related travel expenses (in lieu of obtaining a travel 
advance).  Specifics on this new option will be outlined in an upcoming 
    c.  Phase Three (September 2019).  Sailors will be able to complete a 
fully electronic travel voucher using MyPCS Mobile on their mobile device.  
Sailors will be able to upload receipts, complete a voucher that has been 
prepopulated with basic information, electronically sign and provide it to 
their CPPA for final processing.

5.  These initiatives are just the beginning to Navy fielding a modernized 
PCS move process that makes the overall customer experience better for 
Sailors and their families.

6.  Contact MyNavy Career Center at 833-330-MNCC/6622 or via e-mail at 
askMNCC(at)navy.mil with any issues or to provide feedback.

7.  Released by Vice Admiral John B. Nowell, Jr, N1.//


Throwback Thursday Classic Post – How to Manage Your PRD and Not Get Stuck with a “Hotfill”

Posted on Updated on

(I’m going to start re-posting some of the better and more popular blog posts on the site on Throwback Thursday. Much of the content is evergreen or requires minimal updates, and the blog has a much larger readership than when many of these posts first ran.)

There are many important dates in your Navy career. One of the most important and neglected dates, though, is your projected rotation date or PRD. Your PRD is the month and year that your current orders will expire and you are scheduled to rotate to a new command. If you don’t manage your PRD and pay close attention to it, you can find yourself with few career options and in a situation you never thought you’d be in. With that in mind, here are my tips for managing your PRD.

Know Your PRD

First, know when it is because many physicians don’t know their PRD. If you are in this crowd, the easiest way to find your PRD is to login to BUPERS On-Line and look at block 14 of your Officer Data Card:


The other way to find your PRD is to contact your Detailer because they can look it up in the detailing system. Many physicians don’t know their Detailer, so here is a link to a page with “Contact Us” in the middle.

Manage Your PRD

Once you know your PRD, the easiest way to manage it is with whatever calendar you use (an app, web calendar like Google Calendar, Outlook, a date book, etc.). Place reminders in your calendar to correspond with these time frames:

13-18 Months Before Your PRD – This is when you should start thinking about your next career move. Although the normal time period to request an extension (find a template here) at your current command is 9-12 months before your PRD, many physicians request an extension during this time period if they are sure they want to extend. This is also a great time to talk to the Operational Detailer about operational billets you might have interest in or the Senior Detailer about what I’ll call “alternative billets” like those at DHA/BUMED, BUPERS, global health engagement billets, NAVMEDWEST, NAVMEDEAST, etc. If you act on your PRD in this timeframe, you’ll be well ahead of the game.

9-12 Months Before Your PRD – This is the traditional detailing window where you contact your Detailer and Specialty Leader to negotiate your next career move. This is when physicians normally submit an extension request as well as explore potential billets for their next set of orders. The one caveat is that the availability of billets is often contingent on the results of the Graduate Medical Education Selection Board or GMESB. Since these results are not finalized until January, people with summer PRDs will find that they may have to wait beyond this time period to find out what billets are available and get orders.

6-8 Months Before Your PRD – This is when the list of billets that are actually available will solidify and most physicians will get orders. If you want to extend at your current command and you haven’t submitted an extension request yet, you should do that ASAP.

1-5 Months Before Your PRD – Many physicians will get into this period without orders. If it is because you were waiting on the results of the GMESB, you are probably fine. If you are in this period for another reason, you should get nervous. The truth is that unanticipated things always happen. Commanding Officers don’t endorse extension requests. Unanticipated openings cause a Detailer and Specialty Leader to have a “hotfill” billet. When things like this happen, a Detailer goes looking for officers close to their PRD to fill the need. If you are in this window without orders, you are low lying fruit for filling these needs. And just so you know, most of these “hotfills” are not in Rota or San Diego.

At Your PRD or Beyond – Physicians let their PRDs “expire” all the time. Sometimes it is because they submit an extension request that never gets approved because it gets lost somewhere in the process. Other times they don’t know when their PRD is. Realistically, there is often no consequence if your PRD expires, although some commands will pick up on this fact and get your attention by threatening to take away your computer access. The biggest threat, though, is the aforementioned “hotfills” that inevitably show up. If your PRD is expired, you are going to rise to the top of the list when the Detailer goes looking for people to fill that need. Have fun wherever that “hotfill” is.

The Bottom Line – Know when your PRD is and manage it according to the above timeline. This will give you the maximum chance of getting what you want and reduce the chance that you are selected for a “hotfill” you don’t want.

My PCS Checklist – Taking Stress Out of PCS

Posted on Updated on

By CDR Erik Wells, Sea Warrior Program Public Affairs

WASHINGTON (NNS) — The latest upgrade to MyNavy Portal (MNP) includes a checklist to guide Sailors and their families through their next Permanent Change of Station (PCS) move.  My PCS Checklist allows Sailors to easily create their own personalized move checklist, and can be found in the Assignment, Leave, and Travel section of MNP under the Career and Life Events drop down menu.

There is no question that PCS moves are challenging, whether it is a single Sailor heading across country or a family moving overseas.  The process of relocating can be a source of personal, financial and family stress and it requires a great deal of logistical planning.  My PCS Checklist makes the process better.  Sailors can now create their own personalized checklist by using an intuitive, web-based program, to guide them through the PCS process and help eliminate unnecessary stress.

“Creating the checklist is easy,” said Capt. Chris Harris, director, distribution management division, Navy Personnel Command.  “Sailors answer a few questions in the online checklist, starting with their official detachment date, which automatically generates a personalized, step-by-step checklist that calculates the number of days to complete each item until their move from their current command.  Sailors can print out their checklist at work or email it to a spouse, parent or anyone with whom they want to share the information.”

The checklist is broken down into four categories – Shipping Household Goods, Family Move, Money and Sailor Admin.  Based on the detachment date selected, the checklist outlines necessary activities, due dates and includes tips and sources of support for each category.  The program includes a taskbar that indicates how far along Sailors are in completing their activities and they will receive alerts to remind them to complete the tasks to stay on their PCS timeline.

“MyNavy Portal addresses one of the major issues Sailors face when managing their careers – they have to use too many websites to complete routine tasks for managing their careers,” said Dave Driegert, PMW 240 assistant program manager, Single Point of Entry for MNP.  “My PCS Checklist is the newest tool for Sailors and joins other recently-available applications like MyRecord Web 1.0 and electronic Personnel Action Request (ePAR)/1306.  MNP is growing all the time.  In the months ahead, Sailors will be able to access an increasing number of new features and tools.”

Sailors should work with their command pay and personnel administrator if they have any questions concerning PCS policies and procedures.  They may also contact MyNavy Career Center 24/7 at askmncc@navy.mil, or toll-free at 833-330-MNCC (6622).

In addition to PCS information, MNP provides Sailors links to other webpages and resources – all in one convenient location.

Get more information about the Navy from US Navy facebook or twitter.

For more news from Chief of Naval Personnel, visit www.navy.mil/local/cnp/.

Potential Delays Associated With Personally Procured Moves OCT-DEC 2018

Posted on Updated on

From NAVSUP Public Affairs

MECHANICSBURG, Pa. (NNS) — NAVSUP is asking Sailors performing a Personally Procured Move (PPM) during October through December 2018 to be aware of potential impacts to the PPM overall process – from advance payment request to claims settlement.

The software used to validate, reconcile, and authorize payment for Sailors’ PPMs will be upgraded in December 2018.  Settlement of PPM claims submitted for reimbursement during November and December may be delayed due to the system being taken offline. All PPM packages submitted will be prioritized based upon the date received and processed accordingly once the system comes back online.

Claim submission scenarios and more details are available online at https://www.navsup.navy.mil/public/navsup/hhg/time_to_move/ppm/.

For questions specific to your individual claim, call 888-742-4467.

Learn more from Navy Household Goods online at:
Facebook: www.facebook.com/navyhhg
YouTube: www.youtube.com/navyhhg
Twitter: www.twitter.com/navyhhg
Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/navyhhg

Headquartered in Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania, and employing a diverse, worldwide workforce of more than 22,500 military and civilian personnel, NAVSUP’s mission is to provide supplies, services, and quality-of-life support to the Navy and joint warfighter. Learn more at www.navsup.navy.mil, http://www.facebook.com/navsup and http://twitter.com/navsupsyscom.