a woman packing boxes and tricks for a smooth diy move.

Packing Tips and Tricks for a Smooth DITY Move

Moving can be a stressful and overwhelming experience, especially for military families. Whether it’s a permanent change of station (PCS) or a personally procured move (PPM), there are many factors to consider when planning a move. As a military spouse, you may have to move frequently and navigate the challenges of a PCS or PPM. In this article, we’ll provide you with packing tips and tricks to help you have a smooth and stress-free DITY move. We understand that packing and moving can be a daunting task, but with the right planning and resources, it can be a manageable and even enjoyable experience. From packing supplies to loading and unloading, we’ll guide you through the entire move process to ensure a successful transition to your new duty station. So, let’s get started and make your next move a smooth one.

Benefits of DITY Moves for Military Families

Military families who are relocating have the option to either hire a moving company or choose a Personally Procured Move (PPM), also known as a DITY move. While a PPM move may require more work and planning, it can offer significant benefits that are not available with traditional moves.

One of the primary benefits of a DITY move is the control it provides over the moving process. Military families can choose their own moving team, create their own schedule, and manage the packing and unpacking process. This control can result in a more personalized and stress-free moving experience.

Another benefit of a DITY move is the potential cost savings. Military families can receive reimbursement for the cost of the move, including packing supplies, moving trucks, and mileage. In addition, families who move under their weight limit may receive an incentive payment.

For military families who are looking to keep their personal property close, a DITY move can provide the perfect solution. Military families can choose to transport their items in their own personal vehicle, keeping them within easy reach during the move.

Finally, military families who opt for a DITY move may be eligible for additional benefits, such as VA home loan benefits. These benefits can provide long-term financial advantages and make a DITY move an even more appealing option for military families.

Overall, a DITY move can provide numerous benefits for military families, including control over the move, cost savings, flexibility, and potential long-term financial advantages.

Tips for Packing Fragile Items

Packing fragile items can be one of the most challenging tasks when it comes to moving. The last thing you want is to arrive at your new destination only to find your valuable and sentimental items are broken or damaged. Fortunately, with the right packing techniques, you can ensure the safe transportation of your fragile belongings.

To start, gather packing supplies such as bubble wrap, packing paper, packing peanuts, and sturdy boxes. Begin by wrapping each fragile item in bubble wrap or packing paper, ensuring that all sides are covered. For added protection, place the item in a sturdy box and fill any empty space with packing peanuts or crumpled packing paper.

When packing plates, stack them vertically like records with foam plates or bubble wrap in between each plate. For glasses, wrap each one individually with packing paper or bubble wrap and place them in a box with packing peanuts. Don’t forget to label the boxes as “fragile” and “this side up” to ensure careful handling during transportation.

For extra protection, consider using a packing blanket or padding to protect large fragile items such as mirrors, artwork, or furniture. With these tips, you can ensure that your fragile items arrive at your new destination in one piece.

Essential Moving Supplies for a Smooth PCS

Moving can be a stressful process, especially when it comes to packing up your entire household. To make the process as smooth as possible, it’s important to have the right moving supplies. Here are some essential supplies that can make your PCS move go more smoothly:

  1. Moving boxes – sturdy, corrugated boxes in various sizes to fit different items
  2. Packing paper – to wrap fragile items and provide cushioning
  3. Bubble wrap – to wrap delicate items for extra protection
  4. Packing tape – heavy-duty tape to seal boxes securely
  5. Box cutter – for easy box opening during unpacking
  6. Moving blankets – to protect furniture and other large items from scratches and dents during transit
  7. Plastic wrap – to keep furniture and mattresses clean and protected
  8. Marking pens – for labeling boxes and keeping track of what’s inside
  9. Packing peanuts or foam cushioning – to fill in any gaps in boxes and prevent shifting during transport

By investing in these essential moving supplies, you’ll be able to pack your belongings with confidence, knowing that they’ll be protected during the move. Don’t forget to stock up on these items well in advance to avoid any last-minute scrambling.

Strategies for Cutting Moving Costs

Moving can be expensive, but there are ways to keep costs down. One strategy is to start early and plan ahead. This will give you time to compare moving companies and find the best deal. You can also save money by downsizing and getting rid of items you no longer need.

Another way to cut costs is to do a DITY move. By packing and transporting your belongings yourself, you can save money on labor costs. Additionally, consider using free or low-cost packing supplies, such as boxes from local stores or newspapers instead of bubble wrap.

If you’re moving for the military, be sure to take advantage of any available resources, such as PCS entitlements, and ask your transportation office about reimbursement options. Finally, be aware of any tax deductions you may be eligible for related to your move.

By following these strategies, you can make your move more affordable and keep more money in your pocket.

How to Plan and Organize a DITY Move

Planning and organizing a DITY move can be overwhelming, but with the right strategies in place, you can make the process smoother and less stressful. Here are some tips to help you plan and organize your DITY move:

  1. Create a PCS binder: A PCS binder is an essential tool that will help you keep track of all the important documents, receipts, and paperwork related to your move. Make sure to keep all your important documents, such as orders, travel authorizations, and receipts, in one place to avoid losing anything.
  1. Use a moving checklist: A moving checklist will help you stay organized and ensure that you don’t forget anything important. Create a checklist that includes all the tasks you need to complete before, during, and after your move.
  1. Set a budget: Setting a budget is essential to avoid overspending during your move. Make a list of all the expenses you will incur during your move, such as packing supplies, rental trucks, and lodging, and allocate a budget for each item.
  1. Hire a moving team: If you need help with loading and unloading heavy boxes and furniture, consider hiring a moving team. Make sure to hire a reputable company with experience in military moves.
  1. Pack strategically: Packing is one of the most important parts of a DITY move. Make sure to pack strategically by using sturdy moving boxes, packing paper, bubble wrap, and packing tape to ensure that your belongings are protected during transportation.

By following these tips, you can plan and organize your DITY move with ease, ensuring that your move goes as smoothly as possible.

Loading and Unloading Tips for a Smooth Move

Proper loading and unloading of your belongings can make all the difference when it comes to a successful move. Here are some tips to ensure a smooth and safe loading and unloading process:

  1. Use a dolly or hand truck to move heavy items such as furniture, appliances, and boxes.
  2. Place heavy items on the bottom of the moving truck and lighter items on top to prevent damage.
  3. Use moving blankets to protect furniture and fragile items from scratches and dents during transportation.
  4. When loading boxes, place heavier boxes on the bottom and lighter ones on top to prevent crushing.
  5. Use straps to secure items in place during transportation and prevent shifting.
  6. When unloading, start with the heaviest items first and place them in the designated area of the new home.
  7. Be cautious when unloading fragile items and use care to prevent dropping or mishandling.

By following these loading and unloading tips, you can ensure that your belongings arrive at your new home in the same condition as when they were loaded onto the truck.

Making the Most of Relocation Assistance Programs

Relocation assistance programs are designed to help military families with their PCS moves. These programs can provide financial support, information about the new location, and resources for finding a new home. Some programs even offer help with job searches and education.

To take advantage of these programs, start by researching what options are available to you. Check with your transportation office, military family services, and other resources to find out what types of assistance are available.

Once you have a better understanding of the options, take the time to review and compare each program. Look at the services offered, eligibility requirements, and any restrictions or limitations. This will help you determine which program is the best fit for your needs.

Don’t be afraid to ask questions or seek additional information. The more you know about the program, the better equipped you’ll be to make informed decisions. And be sure to take advantage of all the resources available to you – this is a time when a little extra help can go a long way.


In conclusion, a DITY move can be a great option for military families looking to save money and have more control over their relocation. With the right planning, organization, and resources, a DITY move can be a smooth and successful experience. By following the tips and strategies outlined in this article, military families can minimize the stress and costs associated with moving, and make the most of their relocation assistance programs. Remember to always prioritize safety when packing, loading, and unloading, and to take advantage of any available resources and support. With careful planning and preparation, a DITY move can be a positive and rewarding experience for military families.

Picture of Wes Struebing

Wes Struebing

After more than 30 years in the logistics sector, I have learned a thing or two about moving things and motivating people to do their best and offer their all to our customers. Whether in life or in business, I believe in one thing: I only want to be there if I can improve things.

Logistics is not only what I do; it is my passion.

Picture of Wes Struebing

Wes Struebing

After more than 30 years in the logistics sector, I have learned a thing or two about moving things and motivating people to do their best and offer their all to our customers. Whether in life or in business, I believe in one thing: I only want to be there if I can improve things.

Logistics is not only what I do; it is my passion.