After months of nationwide lockdowns due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, the United States is slowly starting to reopen and that means you can finally start getting ready for your next move. It is important to plan as much as possible so that your PCS experience doesn’t quickly turn into a nightmare. Here are four things to keep in mind with this next move.

Update your budget

Moving companies across the country are beginning to institute COVID-19 surcharges to accommodate additional safety costs, and yours could as well. Getting ahead of this should be simple and only require a few phone calls. Like anything, proper planning prevents piss poor performance, so start getting quotes from movers sooner rather than later to ensure you’re not caught off guard financially. Read more money-saving tips for moving on PCSgrades.

Moving company safety measures

Now that you’ve figured out the cost, it’s time to ensure proper safety measures are in place. It’s important to know that you’re not only paying to move your items, but for movers to take your family’s health and overall well-being seriously.

To that end, prepare a list of questions to ask your moving company before signing any contracts, including:

  • What are you doing to ensure social distancing?
  • Will your staff be wearing PPE?
  • Will the driver stay isolated from the other staff?
  • What are your cleaning protocols?
  • Are employees tested regularly, especially before and after work?

The military’s newest guidance states that moving companies should provide customers with paperwork showing health screenings have been completed on staff before they are allowed to enter your home. It’s essential that, before you hire any moving company, you make sure that you know exactly what safety measures they have in place to reduce the risk of spreading COVID-19. Any professional company should be prepared to field these questions.

How travel will be impacted

Murphy’s Law seems to be the mantra of 2020, so it’s important to treat this move as if everything may go wrong so you’re prepared when it actually does. If you’re flying, the last thing you want is to lose your face mask and not have a backup. Imagine your kid accidentally dropping it in the airport bathroom; At that point, the air is probably safer than the mask.

Here are some things to keep in mind when traveling:

  • Have back-up masks -- the more the better. These can be found at your local pharmacy or grocery store.
  • Make sure you have plenty of hand sanitizer in case the gas station bathroom isn’t too inviting.
  • Call the airport and ask what new requirements have been implemented for passengers.
  • Check in with car rental companies to ensure they’re properly cleaning the interior of their vehicles.

Staying on top of this will give you peace of mind and help you sleep better at night as you travel to your next duty station.

Continuous training

Complacency breeds failure. If you’re not keeping up on the latest PCS news and updates, you’re doing yourself and your family a disservice. PCSgrades has produced a variety of webinars that will help you make sure you’re prepared. Every week, they interview industry experts from moving companies, realtors, move coordinators, and experienced military families to share up-to-date info about the changing rules of PCSing during the pandemic. Manage your PCS move and protect the ones you love with help from PCSgrades

This article is sponsored by PCSgrades.