DoD Directs Stop Movement in response to COVID-19

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Sahara L. Fales
  • Air Force’s Personnel Center Public Affairs


The Department of Defense issued a stop movement of all personnel to, from or through Centers for Disease Control and Prevention designated Level 3 COVID-19 locations effective March 13 and for the next 60 days.  Following Secretary of Defense Mark T. Esper’s announcement of new travel restrictions, the Air Force began implementing and complying with this guidance.

The stop movement applies to all forms of official travel such as permanent change of station, temporary duty, and government-funded leave for uniformed and civilian personnel and includes personal leave and other non-official travel for uniformed personnel. Level 3 locations currently include most of Europe, South Korea, China, and Iran. However these are subject to change as determined by the CDC. CDC travel information can be found here.

PCS guidance to or from Level 3 countries:

  • Airmen currently assigned to a CONUS base with a projected PCS to one of the Level 3 countries and Airmen who have out-processed, but not departed the local area for one of the Level 3 countries will remain in place until Stop Movement is terminated.
  • Airmen currently assigned to an overseas base in a Level 3 country with a projected PCS and March 2020 Date Estimated Return from Overseas who have not departed will remain in place until Stop Movement is terminated.
  • Airmen who are PCSing to or from an installation in a Level 3 country and have departed their last duty installation and are enroute to their gaining base must contact their losing chain of command and MPF/FSS by whatever means available.  Airmen will not proceed until after receiving further guidance from the Air Force’s Personnel Center coordinated through the respective MPF.
  • If Airmen in a Level 3 country have an approved separation or retirement in the next 60 days, they are exempt from Stop Movement.  However, those Airmen must comply with transit and screening guidance described in the “Department of Defense Guidance for Personnel Traveling During the Novel Coronavirus Outbreak” memo dated March 11, 2020. That guidance is available here.

TDY or Leave to or from Level 3 countries:

  • Airmen projected TDY to a Stop Movement location will not proceed on TDY. Airmen enroute or currently at a TDY location impacted by Stop Movement will remain in-place until further guidance or Stop Movement is terminated.  Airmen currently on leave in an area impacted by Stop Movement will remain in-place until they receive further guidance from their chain of command and MPF. Upon returning to home station, the Airman’s leave dates and duty status code will be adjusted accordingly to ensure Airmen are not inappropriately charged additional leave.

Report no later than date and date of estimated return overseas extensions:

  • Airmen impacted by this guidance with a projected PCS from a country designated as a Level 3 location will have their DEROS extended 60 days.
  • Airmen impacted by this guidance requiring a RNLTD extension will be worked on a case by case basis.


More personnel travel guidance along with Frequently Asked Questions will be released as they become available. For further questions please contact your chain of command or local Military Personnel Flight. In addition, the Total Force Service Center can be reached at (800) 525-0102. A TFSC technician is available 24/7 to take your call.