Managing your finances before, during and after your move
The 86th Comptroller Squadron is located in building 2108 and can be contacted via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. It may take up to a couple pay periods before your overseas entitlements are shown in your paycheck. Check your Leave and Earnings Statement (LES) to verify your entitlements were started properly. Your travel payments will be sent via an electronic funds transfer (EFT) directly to your government travel card (GTC). If you do not have a GTC your travel payments will be EFT'ed into your military pay account. If you would like the travel payment deposited into an account other than your military pay account please let a travel representative know.
Walk-in hours are available for civilian pay customers Monday, Wednesday and Friday between the hours of 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Walk-in hours for military personnel are only available for advance pay form turn-ins, My Pay pin resets and collection vouchers for indebtedness payments. We ask that all other inquiries and forms be turned in via the customer service email address listed above.
If you feel you have an emergency situation arise, please contact your Commander, Chief or First Sergeant who have a direct line to a finance representative and will be able to assist with your situation.
For tips, forms and customer services links, check out:
FAMILY SEPARATION ALLOWANCE (FSA)
If your dependents cannot live with you at or near your permanent duty station, whether inside or outside the United States, you may be entitled to FSA.
FSA provides compensation for added expenses incurred because of a government-enforced family separation and not due to election of the member or family member:
-Transportation of dependents is not authorized at government expense, and the dependents do not live in the vicinity of your permanent duty station.
-Transportation of dependents is authorized at government expense, but you have elected an unaccompanied tour of duty because a dependent cannot accompany you to the permanent station due to certified medical reasons.
-You are on duty aboard a ship, and the ship is away from the homeport continuously for more than 30 days.
-You are on temporary duty (TDY) (or temporary additional duty) away from the permanent station continuously for more than 30 days, and your dependents are not residing at or near the TDY station.
-In addition, you may be entitled to FSA when your dependents are evacuated from a danger area and they temporarily occupy government quarters at a safe haven area. A safe haven location may be anywhere in the world named in the evacuation order, or subsequent modification to that order, to which a dependent is directed to relocate on a temporary basis to await a decision by competent authority to either return to the OCONUS permanent duty station or proceed to a designated place. (Reference DoDFMR Vol. 7A chapter 27)
FSA is payable at the rate of $250 per month (pro-rated to $8.33 per day for periods less than a month).
Temporary Lodging Expense
You are paid TLE when you and your dependents must occupy temporary quarters in the CONUS due to a PCS move. You can receive UP TO 5 DAYS TLE when moving from a CONUS PDS to an OCONUS PDS. If you stay in the local area with friends or relatives, you must sign a statement providing the period claimed, address and name of your host.
Temporary Lodging Allowance (TLA)
You are authorized TLA to partially cover the additional expenses incurred while you occupy temporary lodgings and the expenses of meals and incidentals (this covers laundry, transportation, and dry cleaning) outside the continental United States.
Payments are made in 10-day increments. You are required to attend the Ramstein In-Processing line for TLA information briefed by the housing office. The number of days of Temporary Lodging Allowance (TLA) varies for each individual based on the availability of housing at the time of arrival. Due to the availability of government and economy quarters, TLA is authorized only until furniture can be delivered. You will usually find housing within 20 days of arrival.
As you search for housing, you must file your TLA claims at the housing office every 10 days. TLA will be paid to you only if no housing is available, and TLA stops if you refuse suitable economy or government housing or if you are not aggressively seeking housing. Please ensure to use a VAT form while in TLA.
For more detailed information, check out the housing office fact sheet.
Dislocation Allowance (DLA)
If you are moving your dependents to Ramstein, a designated stateside base, or to a follow-on base, you are entitled to Dislocation Allowance (DLA). If you have no dependents you are also entitled to DLA when you are transferred to a new permanent duty station and government quarters are not assigned. Currently, DLA is equal to two months BAQ at the applicable "with/without dependent" rate. DLA is intended to partially reimburse you for expenses incurred in relocating your household and will be paid on your PCS voucher.
Privately Owned Vehicle (POV) Shipment
The Transportation Management Office (TMO) will brief you on reimbursable expenses associated with the shipment of an authorized POV.
Review your allotments.
Do you need to start, stop, or change an allotment? If so, take care of it at least 30 days prior to your departure or wait until after your arrival in Germany. Your payment for travel will be made by electronic funds transfer, which is deposited into your direct deposit account or another account, if you prefer.
Keep a detailed record of your PCS travel--include all stops (including leave) en-route, arrival, and departure dates and times. Keep receipts and/or records of ALL expenses associated with your move. You are required to turn in a copy of any MTAs and/or TRs with your travel settlement voucher; therefore, be sure to keep all plane tickets.
Pick up your military pay and travel pay records before you leave your present duty station. Without records, payment must be held pending confirmation of advances. If you received advance travel pay, ask for a copy of the voucher to file with your PCS settlement claim.
Financial Preparedness-- LOCAL CURRENCY
The monetary unit in Germany is the Euro. Exchange rates between the dollar and the Euro change daily and are announced on the American Forces Network (AFN) and posted at community banking facilities and most retail outlets that service Americans.
Just as the dollar is divided into 100 cents, the Euro is divided into 100 Euro cents. To determine how much an item actually costs, simply divide the purchase price by the current exchange rate.
When you buy items on the German economy they are subject to a 19 percent value added tax (VAT). In general, if an item exceeds 25 Euro after the tax, U.S. Forces personnel may, if the merchant agrees, obtain tax relief. The goods or services purchased must be for personal use only.
Banking and Financial Institutions
Military banking and credit union facilities are available in the Kaiserslautern Military Community to meet your personal financial needs. Bank of America, N.A., is under contract with the Department of Defense to provide financial services as Community Bank. The KMC's credit union is a branch of the Portsmouth, N.H.-based Service Credit Union. Community Bank and Service Federal Credit Union are full-service financial institutions. They offer checking and savings accounts, foreign currency exchange, personal loans, certificates of deposit, bill-paying services, and travelers checks in dollars and most European currency denominations.
The KMC currently supports several 24-hour ATM machines, located at the banking center and various sites throughout the community: Ramstein Enlisted Club, Northside Post Office and commissary, Vogelweh Commissary, Rhine Ordnance Barracks, Kapaun, Miesau Army Depot, Landstuhl hospital and post office, Sembach Combined Club and the Vogelweh Annex of the Ramstein Inn.
Service Credit Union offers euro bill paying services as well as euro currency and travelers checks. Members can also obtain personal and secured loans. Service Credit Union provides its members with 24-hours a day, seven days a week access to their accounts through ATMs, the VIP Line and "@ Your Service" free, interactive home banking. SCU operates five ATM machines in the Kaiserslautern area, one at each branch office, the Vogelweh and Sembach commissaries and the Ramstein 24-hour Shoppette. For more information about Service Credit Union, visit their Web site at www.servicecu.org or call toll free at 00800-4728-2000.
All ATMs allow you to make withdrawals in dollars or Euros. Customers who make Euro withdrawals buy them at the day's going rate. ATMs also accept government issued credit cards for cash advances for travelers. While visiting on temporary duty in the United States, credit union members have toll-free access to their accounts using the credit union's VIP line.