PPM or HHG: Which move is better?

Preparing for a military move, or PCS, means deciding who moves your stuff. You, or the military.

What factors should go into this decision?

Read on for all things military move types, from what your options look like, to the types available based on where you are moving (CONUS or OCONUS).

* If you’re still struggling with your upcoming move, please reach out to me! Find answers to questions like “What can we expect at our new base?” and “How do we coordinate everything with our PCS?” *


PPM stands for Personally Procured Move. For this option, you are responsible for moving all of your belongings.

Whether you hiring your own moving company, or get a moving truck and do it all yourself, you will be fully reimbursed for the cost.

When you hire your own movers in a PPM, you are not reimbursed until after the fact.

Please note: Although you receive a full reimbursement, that sum will still be taxed. You can learn more here.


HHG stands for Household Goods. This option is a move completed by a government-hired moving company, aka TSP.

You are not responsible for any costs, similar to how on-base housing works.

This option is also known as “the military moving you”.

Can I do a combo of both?

Most likely, yes. This is actually a great idea during a CONUS move.

It allows you to have a small shipment of goods with you as you move, such as your clothing, important documents, and valuables.

The larger shipment of your belongings would be sent in an HHG, or military move.

What factors should I consider?

When you are given the option to choose between a PPM and HHG move, use these different factors to help make your decision.


How far are you moving?

Will you be moving within the same state, or will you be moving across the country?

How long would the drive take?

For an in-state move, it many be more convenient to do a PPM (aka move yourself).

Doing an OCONUS move will almost always require that you do an HHG (aka a military move).

Amount of Belongings

Are you living in a one bedroom apartment? Save yourself the hassle and do a PPM.

Do you have lots of big furniture or heavy work equipment? Getting help through a HHG may be the better option.

Number in your household

If travelling with 5 kids AND all your belongings seems too stressful, hire help!

If you have other relatives or family members living in your home that will stay behind, doing a PPM will be your best option to make sure only your belongings get packed.


Moving just not your thing? Get help!

If you are pumped to do a whole PCS by yourself, GO FOR IT!

Time until the move

Sometimes your hard orders don’t come in until the last minute. This would be the perfect time to do an HHG.

If you have a few months to plan ahead, do a little bit of packing each day to save some money and energy later on!

Do my options change based on where we move to?


During a PCS within in the states, you will likely be given the option to do a Household Goods move (HHG) or Personally Procured Move (PPM).

Talk to your local transportation office for more details.


During a PCS overseas, which covers both entering and exiting the states, you are usually given the option to do a Household Goods move (HHG), and may also be given the chance to do a Personally Procured Move (PPM).

Talk to your local transportation office for more details.

If you are still unsure about your best option regarding moving, book a free consultation call with me!

We can discuss your specific situation, and what I can do to help you. I look forward to hearing from you!

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