This program allows Airmen selected for a short tour, dependent-restricted or elect to serve the unaccompanied tour length (15 months or less), to apply for advanced assignment consideration prior to departing for that short tour. Home-Basing (HB) assignments permit return to Alaska, Hawaii, or the same Continental United States (CONUS) base they left before going on the short tour. The Follow-On (FO) assignment program provides for advanced consideration of a CONUS assignment (not HB) or an overseas (OS) tour for the Airman's Permanent Change of Station (PCS) upon completion of the short tour.
Airmen currently serving at an accompanied tour area (other than Alaska and Hawaii), regardless of accompanied status, who elect to serve a dependent-restricted tour or short unaccompanied tour (15 months or less), may only apply for an FO to a CONUS location or a long tour in Alaska or Hawaii. As an exception of policy, individuals may request FO assignment to another accompanied OS tour (other than Alaska or Hawaii).
You should apply for your HB or FO assignment via the virtual Military Personnel Flight (vMPF) after your initial relocation briefing. This is a one-time opportunity and you should carefully consider your choices. The Air Force's Personnel Center will do everything reasonable to finalize your next-after-remote assignment to one of your preferences. You can apply for specific bases, states, regions, or countries. The more choices you give AFPC, the more likely you will received one of them.
If your Air Force Specialty Code (AFSC) is not authorized at a certain base (see your local personnel office for a listing indicating the AFSCs at each installation), do not waste a valuable choice by listing it. AFPC will only be able to approve those HB/FO requests when it is determined that a requirement exists in your grade and AFSC at the time you will be available (essentially, your date eligible to return from overseas (DEROS) month + 60 days). This must be accomplished before you leave your current station. After you apply for an HB or FO assignment, the military personnel data system (MilPDS) is programmed to store your application at AFPC until the fourth month prior to your projected departure date. At this time, AFPC attempts to provide you an HB or FO assignment.
While this may seem like an easy task, understand that AFPC reviews manning requirements 15 months or more into the future and manning levels can change for any number of reasons. After we review your request for the HB or FO assignment, we forward the approval or disapproval decision to the Military Personnel Section (MPS) and they will notify you.
If a HB or FO is approved, you can plan accordingly. If it is disapproved, your next assignment will be handled under the Enlisted Quarterly Assignments Listing (EQUAL) overseas returnee process (unless you are a military spouse couple) and you will be notified of your onward assignment approximately three to five months prior to your DEROS. If you are approved for an FO assignment, you must obtain the retainability for it within 30 days after approval. If you are approved for an HB assignment, you can obtain the necessary retainability when you receive your overseas returnee counseling. Your family members may remain at the current duty location or you may relocate them/household goods at your own expense without losing the HB/FO assignment. With an approved follow-on assignment, you may relocate your family or household goods to the new duty station at government expense.
You should be aware of several other factors concerning the HB and FO program. As with any personnel program, if you have any questions or concerns, you should consult your Military Personnel Flight for further details.
Airmen who receive an approved assignment are not eligible to request an indefinite DEROS or voluntarily extend overseas for more than three months unless they voluntarily cancel their HB or FO assignment.
Approved assignments may be cancelled if an Airman moves family members or household goods to a location other than the follow-on assignment, unless they were moved at your own expense. Approved assignments may be involuntarily changed or cancelled due to changing requirements and priorities (base closure, loss of authorizations, etc.). Affected Airmen are given priority for other assignment preferences and special handling is provided.
You may be eligible to ship a Privately Owned Vehicle at government expense to the OS location (check with your MPF).
Single members, single member parents, and military couples who will serve concurrent, unaccompanied short tours, can store household goods at government expense (check with your local Defense Travel Management Office and relocate their family members to a designated location at their own expense without cancellation of an HB or FO assignment.