No matter how you go about moving across the country it costs money. And while the military pays you to move from point a to point b, it can still feel like you are spending plenty of money out of pocket to make your move happen. Here are the best ways our military family has found to help save money as we move across the country.
Partial Do It Yourself (DITY) or Full DITY
Even if you chose to have the military move you one, of the best things you can do is to weigh your car empty and then weight it full right before you head out to your next assignment. It can feel like a lot of work, but depending on the distance you are traveling that weight can quickly add. You’ll always want to keep a few things with you, so this is a great way to make a little extra.
A Full DITY is another great way to make a little money to help pay for the cost of moving. It’s a lot of work, but those who do it love it and make tons of money. It has an added benefit of making sure your valuables are well treated.
Brown Bag It
Another way to save money is to pack lunches. You can do this for the whole trip or just a few meals. The amount of money you spend going out to eat during a PCS can add up very fast, so having a handful of meals that are cheaper is a great way to save money. This can also apply to snacks. Instead of loading up on snacks when you stop for gas, bring snacks with you from your old house. If you buy them before you weigh your car you will even get paid to move them across the country.You can also buy gallons of water, packs of Gatorade or soda. Any way to cut cost by buying items you need in bulk will help save money.
Stay with Friends
Another great possibility when road tripping is to stay with friends. The more time you log as a military family, the more places you’ll have to stay. It not only gives you a free place to stay, but you also can spend more time with friends you haven’t seen in a while.
Save Your House Hunting
One risky, but great way to save money is to putt off house hunting until you move, or at least line up your lease to not start until after you move. Depending on the housing market it might be important to secure a home prior to arriving. One of the best choices we made when we moved to Los Angeles Air Force Base was to wait to rent until after we arrived. We were able to quickly find a house and use our 10 days in our hotel to cover the time we needed a hotel. It is a risky move, but when rent prices are sky high it is worth considering.
What tips do you have for saving money as you PCS?
Written by: Amanda Huffman