Credit Cards, from Wikimedia
Recently an article came out announcing that Government Travel Cards would be authorized for use on PCS expenses. On the outside, this looks fantastic: military members now won't have to pay out of pocket when they move every 2-3 years.
"We want to make sure that people still have it within their budget to continue to travel," he said, "but we've got to travel smarter, more efficiently and try to return money back to the Department of Defense."
Return money to the DoD? Ohhhh, that's right...
Requiring PCSing service members to use the card also comes with a big reward for the government, since the Defense Department receives cash rebates for money spent on the card, officials said. For example, a 5 percent increase in usage across the Defense Department generates an 11 percent rebate.
Well, I have no problem giving DoD money. PCS travel isn't about making money, it should be about getting from point A to point B relatively quickly and with all your stuff. The travel card should make that easier, right?
"When the credit card bill came due we had to pay it out of our pocket. Here it is close to three months after our PCS and we still haven't received a dime in reimbursement from the Air Force for our expenses," wrote Air Force spouse Jami Moore on the Military OneSource Facebook page, which recently advertised the change.
"The GTC card doesn't make a difference when a service member is forced to pay out of pocket for a move if they aren't reimbursed right away. Luckily we have savings, but others may be forced into a situation where they either have to buy food and risk getting paperwork for not paying their GTC card or pay their GTC card and not eat. And if you can't pay it, it goes on the service member's credit report."