Military Boat Move Guide
This pamphlet is to assist military members
in planning the movement of boats. Civilian employees DO NOT
have an entitlement to move a boat at government expense.
Boat movements at government expense almost always result
in excess cost. Our records show excess cost for boat shipments
in fiscal year 1996 ranged from $65 to over $4,100 with most
cases in excess of $1,100. Through careful planning, excess
cost may be reduced in some cases and eliminated in others.
Most members are not well informed on the movement of boats
in government shipments. The belief that all related costs
were authorized when the shipping entitlement was added to
the Joint Federal Travel Regulation (JFTR) IS NOT CORRECT.
The JFTR authorizes movement of a boat, up to a cost not to
exceed the amount to move the same weight of household goods.
This sounds quite simple enough; however, most boats move
under a one-time-only (OTO) rate at commercial rates. These
rates usually exceed the rates to move a like weight of household
goods. When this happens, excess cost is incurred. Please
review the following information before you arrange for shipment
of your boat at government expense.
CONSIDER A DITY MOVE: If you are moving your boat within the
continental United States (CONUS) or between the CONUS and
Alaska, consider making a Do-It-Yourself (DITY) move (at least
for the boat). Your branch of service will pay you an incentive
of 80% of what it would have cost the government to move the
same property (up to the amount of weight remaining on your
entitlement), less actual expenses and applicable taxes. The
incentive is based on actual weight moved, not to exceed your
maximum weight allowance. This program allows you to move
the boat at government expense and possibly make money for
MAKE YOUR OWN ARRANGEMENTS: If you are moving to or from an
area where DITY moves are not allowed or choose not to make
one, consider making your own arrangements with a commercial
boat hauler. You are authorized reimbursement, not to exceed
what the government would have paid to move the same weight
of household goods. CONTACT THE TRANSPORTATION OFFICE FOR
GUIDANCE BEFORE MAKING YOUR OWN ARRANGEMENTS. In all cases
reviewed so far, members have avoided excess cost by making
their own arrangements. A member who paid $9,000 for including
his boat in a government shipment could have avoided the bill
completely by selecting this option. He could have arranged
movement for only $3,500 and received reimbursement from your
branch of service. NOTE: As with DITY moves, you must have
weight remaining on your entitlement to receive reimbursement.
BECOME FAMILIAR WITH PROCEDURES AND COST: If you decide to
move your boat in a government shipment, you should know how
it moves and at what cost. Moves within the CONUS or between
CONUS and Alaska are considered domestic, all other destinations
are international. Boats, moving domestically, are divided
into two categories:
Boats, canoes, skiffs, and kayaks less than 14 feet long and
dinghies or sculls of any size without trailers may be shipped
as household goods at the regular rate. You are responsible
for any special crating or materials needed to move the boat.
Boats 14 feet and longer and boats under 14 feet with a trailer
may move under a domestic OTO rate negotiated by the Military
Traffic Management Command (MTMC) with either a tow away service
or a commercial boat hauler. These shipments ALWAYS result
in excess cost. Shipment under the DITY program is highly
recommended for boats and/or trailers in this category.
!!!CAUTION!!! - Boats over 14 feet shipped along with your
property by a household goods carrier cause the entire shipment
to move at substantially higher rates, resulting in extremely
high excess cost to you. There are two categories for boats
If the boat and/or trailer will fit in a standard overseas
container and is accepted by the carrier, it may move at the
normal single factor household goods rate. (Only smaller boats
meet this requirement.)
All other boats are moved under an international OTO boat
rate negotiated by MTMC. It is important to note that if household
goods are shipped at the same time, they will also move at
the OTO rate. International OTO boat shipments ALWAYS result
in excess cost. If you are shipping a boat internationally,
we STRONGLY recommend making your own arrangements (see item
BEWARE OF FACTORS WHICH INCREASE EXCESS COST: You, the member,
are responsible for all additional accessorial costs related
to the movement of a boat and/or trailer. Additional accessorial
costs include, but are not limited to: tire replacement, tire
repair, packing wheel bearings, structural repairs to the
trailer, lift on or lift off services of a commercial boat
hauler, and all special packing, crating, and handling. Also
remember, if the household goods and boat move together at
a rate higher than the normal household goods rate (as in
the case of shipments moving under international OTO boat
rates), the increased cost of moving the household goods is
borne by the member.
STORAGE OF YOUR BOAT: Generally, the weight of the boat and
cost increases discussed for transportation also apply to
storage of boats. Most nontemporary storage contractors will
not accept boats for storage. When accepted, the weight of
the boat is considered part of the net weight of your shipment
and counts against your allowance. We highly recommend that
you make your own arrangements for storage of boats with a
commercial company and file for reimbursement after withdrawal.
Reimbursement is limited to actual expenses, not to exceed
what the government would have paid to store a like weight
of household goods. You must also have weight remaining on
your entitlement. Water storage of boats at government expense
is not authorized.
PLAN AHEAD: Ask the TRANSPORTATION OFFICE to compute your
excess cost prior to the pickup date. Upon receipt of the
one time only rate, the TRANSPORTATION OFFICE can do a cost
comparison and tell you the approximate excess cost. Use this
figure for planning purposes only. You are liable for the
actual excess cost (which may be higher), regardless of an
estimate received from Transportation office or the movers.
LISTEN CAREFULLY AND ASK QUESTIONS: Listen carefully to your
Transportation office counselor. One of the most common statements
in rebuttal letters is "I was never told," yet signed
documentation reflects differently. Entitlements are constantly
changing, so please do not rely on previous counseling sessions
or personal experiences. Ask questions, no matter how insignificant
they may seem. Correcting deficiencies or problems after the
fact is extremely difficult and, in many cases, not possible.
HOW CAN I APPEAL AN EXCESS COST BILL? If you receive a DD
Form 139 (Pay Adjustment Authorization), contact the Transportation
office BEFORE you agree to pay the debt. You have four (4)
avenues of appeal:
REBUTTAL: Your first avenue in submitting a rebuttal to the
applicable adjudication function through your local Transportation
office. You must state the reasons why you wish to dispute
REMISSION: Active duty enlisted members may file for remission
of indebtedness through Accounting and Finance. Only the uncollected
portion of a debt can be considered for remission.
BOARD FOR CORRECTION OF MILITARY RECORDS: If you feel an injustice
exists, your next step is a review by the Board for Correction
of Military Records. Process a DD Form 149 (Application for
Correction of Military Records) through the Military Personnel
Center. Responses to your rebuttal and remission must accompany
GENERAL ACCOUNTING OFFICE: Your final avenue is to the General
Accounting Office. This request is processed through the Accounting
and Finance Office.
It may take anywhere from 6 months to 2 years before you receive
notification of indebtedness for exceeding your entitlements.
This delay is due to carrier billing procedures and the gathering
of information worldwide by finance. Do not hesitate to use
the above appeal process, and remember, you may use an avenue
more than once if all of your information was not considered.
Hold on to your shipping documents!