NEWS | May 3, 2021

New household goods 7-day spread date policy gives customers greater control, certainty

By Staff Sgt. Jorge Gonzalez Assistant NCOIC, Personal Property Processing Office

The U.S. Transportation Command’s Defense Personal Property Management Office, or DPMO, has implemented the new 2021 Business Rule “Pickup Spread Dates” In accordance with USTRANSCOM Personal Property Advisory No. 21-0030A.

The use of spread dates was introduced to provide customers greater control and certainty when scheduling personal property shipments. This rule is applied to household goods, unaccompanied baggage, and non-temporary storage shipments with pick-ups scheduled on and/or after May 15, 2021.

Members will select a 7-day calendar spread for when they want their household goods picked up. Although the pickup date is inside the pickup spread date window, the pack date(s) will immediately come before the pickup and may be before the pickup spread date window. The weight determines how many pack days are authorized.

The Frequently Asked Questions, or FAQ, listed below further clarify the policy.

What are “Spread Dates”? Why is this a new rule?

“Spread Dates” refer to the window of seven calendar days, within which your moving company must pick up your shipment. We have included the use of spread dates to provide more certainty for customers when scheduling their move.

Does this new rule apply to all shipments?

No. The use of spread dates is being incorporated into some elements of the Defense Personal Property Program. For the 2021 moving season, the rule will apply to most household goods and unaccompanied baggage shipments.

The rule does not apply to “short-fuse” shipments (shipments scheduled on very short noticed during peak season); shipments arranged under Direct-Procurement Method, or DPM, contracts, such as local moves or student baggage; or non-temporary storage shipments. Talk with your counselor to ensure you understand the rules associated with your shipment type.

How are spread dates calculated? Do I have to do anything special to establish my spread dates?

Your spread date window is calculated from the preferred pick-up date you list in Defense Personal Property System, or DPS, when scheduling your move.

The 7-day spread is always after your preferred pick-up date, not before. For example, if you list June 1 as your preferred pick-up date, your moving company is required to schedule your pick-up between June 1 and June 7.

When you say pick-up date, what exactly does that mean? Is that the same thing as my pack-out dates?

Your pick-up date is the day your moving company physically removes your belongings from your home. Your pack-out dates – the day(s) your moving company will be in your home to pack your belongings – will always come before your pick-up date. This is an important point, and one to keep in mind while scheduling your move.

Does this rule change guarantee I will get the exact moving dates I want? Can I do anything to improve my chances of getting the dates I want?

No, this rule change does not address the program’s capacity constraints (which are particularly acute during the summer months). It does, though, provide more certainty over your moving dates once your shipment has been awarded to a moving company.

You can improve your chances of getting moving dates that best work for you by contacting your transportation office to schedule your shipment as soon as you receive your PCS orders.

How long will it take for my moving company to confirm my pick-up date?

Your moving company must confirm the pick-up date with you – in writing – within three calendar days of accepting your shipment. It’s important to note spread dates do not apply to all shipment types. Talk with your counselor to ensure you understand the rules associated with your shipment.

What happens if I don’t hear from my moving company? What should I do?

Contact your transportation office if you have not heard from the moving company within five business days of your start date for the spread date. Don’t wait!

Weekends, and sometimes holidays, are included in this 7-day window. Do I have to accept a pick-up date on a weekend or a holiday?

No, you don’t. The inclusion of spread dates does not change the long-standing rule that prevents moving companies from scheduling a move on a weekend or holiday without the customer’s consent.

I would like to have my shipment picked up on a weekend or holiday. Am I allowed to request a weekend or holiday pick-up?  

Weekend and holiday pick-ups are atypical and approved on a case-by-case basis. While weekends and holiday requests may be accommodated in some instances, we recommend moving on a weekday to ensure you have access to the full range of government and industry resources. Discuss this with your transportation office when you schedule your shipment.

Can the moving company change my date once it’s confirmed? A: Dates should not change without your approval. If your moving company requests a date change and you do not agree with it, immediately contact your transportation office. If your moving company misses your pick-up date, you may be eligible for an inconvenience claim.

For additional guidance or assistance, contact the Personal Property Processing Office at Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph at 210-652-1848; at JBSA-Fort Sam Houston at 210-221-1605, or at JBSA-Lackland at 210-671-2821.