Complete a Navy Move

Navy PCS orders

More than 320,000 men and women actively serve in the U.S. Navy, and thousands of service members receive PCS orders each year. While Navy moves can be exciting — offering the opportunity to live somewhere different and meet new people — they can also be overwhelming if you’re not sure what to do. As you start planning, the following information can help guide you through the process of a Navy PCS. It covers important details about official orders, moving options, weight tickets, advance payments and more.

U.S. Navy hat, waiting to be packed for a move.


Receiving and understanding your Navy orders

As a member of the Navy, you may receive official orders if:

  • Your vessel changes homeport (includes afloat staff and mobile units)
  • Your Permanent Duty Station (PDS) of shore-based command changes
  • There is a change from home or the place from which you were called or ordered to active duty
  • You’re assigned to a course of instruction for 20+ weeks

Upon receiving official orders, be sure to read them thoroughly. They contain your order number, the issue date, the issuer, the authorized locations you will depart from and report to, and other specific instructions. If you’re unsure about where to locate this information, check out this presentation on reading Navy orders from the Naval Supply Systems Command (NAVSUP) or contact your local Personal Property Office (PPO) for help.

Moving options

There are two options for completing a Navy PCS — a personally procured move (PPM) or a full-service move paid for by the military. For those who are unfamiliar with a PPM (also known as a DITY move), it means completing the entire move yourself, and then the government reimburses up to 95 percent of what it would have cost to transfer you. And while some would rather let the government handle the whole process, others like the idea of a PPM and the chance to pocket leftover money. You can complete a PPM by either renting a truck or hiring a “you pack, we drive” service like U-Pack®.

The process of a Navy PPM

Completing a Navy PPM is simple if you follow the steps required by the government. Here’s what you need to do upon receiving orders:

  1. Contact and schedule an appointment with your PPO
  2. Request and apply for a PPM
  3. Ask your PPO which forms are required for a PPM and about moving specifics
  4. After approval, find a reliable moving service
  5. Complete the move
  6. Submit weight tickets for reimbursement

Updated weight ticket information

Previously, the Navy required service members completing a PPM to turn in three weight tickets (one empty and one full at origin, and one full at destination). But the requirements have recently changed, making the process of a DITY move even easier. Now, service members only have to submit one full weight ticket and one empty weight ticket, and they can be from the origin, destination or a combination of both.

Can I receive advance payment for my move?

Navy members completing a PPM can request an advance payment to help defray moving costs. The government may provide up to 60 percent of the estimated allowance to help cover rental vehicles, fuel, tolls, packing materials and moving equipment. If you’re interested in applying for an advance payment, reach out to your PPO for more information.

Keep in mind that not all Navy members are eligible for advance payment. These include:

  • Service members who are separating from the Navy (not retiring)
  • Members completing their first military household goods move
  • Members using a Privately Owned Vehicle to move their items

Finding Navy housing

It’s a good idea to start searching for housing soon after receiving orders. The Navy offers on-base and off-base living options, and there are a variety of online tools available to help you find the best and most affordable accommodations. Begin searching using this Navy housing resource or emailing the Navy Housing Service Center at

Complete your Navy move with U-Pack!

Does a PPM sound like the ideal way to complete your Navy move? Consider U-Pack! As a hybrid service, you pack and load your items, and then we drive it to your new location. A Navy DITY move with U-Pack has many advantages:

  • You can make money
  • You don’t have to drive a bulky rental truck
  • You control the move from start to finish
  • Transit times average 2-5 business days
  • When you request certified weight tickets, we obtain them and give them to you to submit

Get a free online quote or call 844-362-5303844-594-3077 to see how much your Navy move will cost with U-Pack. If you have questions, leave a comment below, and we’ll answer shortly — it’s a privilege to serve our nation’s military members!