Updated 8 April 2019

MARADMIN has been published, and can be viewed here.

If you’re a Marine Corps spouse PCSing to Japan, you know all too well the frustrations of the Administrative Weight Limitation (AWL) that come with the move. Fortunately, changes are being made to the AWL very soon to remove the weight limit for accompanied Marines.

Administrative Weight Limitation (awl) Change For Accompanied Marines To Japan
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The Change

On April 04, 2019, U.S. Marine Corps Personal Property Transportation and Storage reported that, “The Marine Corps received approval to remove the Administrative Weight Limitation (AWL) for Marines with orders for an accompanied tour to Japan with an Effective Date of the Orders on or after 2 April 2019.”

Please be mindful of the Effective Date of the Orders! This can be determined by the date that the Service member is REQUIRED to start traveling from their old permanent duty station (PDS) to their new PDS, and checks into their new Command.

We talked to Natasha Harth, an administrator for USMC PCS Support Pacific Region’s Facebook group, an unofficial USMC entity whose mission is to connect families to official Marine Corps resources and guidance. She states that, “So far, we are tracking a little under 300 accompanied families inbound [to Japan] so far this summer, and more will come.”

What does this mean for families PCSing to Japan?

Once the AWL is lifted, families can ship up to 100% of their maximum weight allowance to Iwakuni, Okinawa, or anywhere in Japan.

What does this mean for families PCSing out of Japan?

U.S. Marine Corps Personal Property Transportation and Storage states that, “Accompanied Marines already stationed in Japan with PCS Orders to CONUS or another OCONUS location can ship up to 100% of their weight allowance of Household Goods and Unaccompanied Baggage FROM Japan to their next duty station as long as they do not exceed the combined weight of all shipments made on the new PCS Orders, including the weight you have stored in long term storage, also known as Nontemporary Storage.”

Non-temporary Storage will still be authorized for large household appliances and household goods that you do not want to ship to Japan.

Administrative Weight Limitation (awl) Change For Accompanied Marines To Japan

When will this go into effect?

We are still waiting for the official MARADMIN (Marine Administrative Message) to be released, but the message is clear that it went into effect 02 April 2019. We will be following this story closely, and updating our readers with information as it trickles in.

Should the Max Weight Allowance be Used?

Although we are all rejoicing in the light of the good news, there are some things to consider when deciding on what to bring to Japan. Natasha Harth recommends to, “use the non-temporary storage for your oversized furniture pieces and major appliances.”

Consider shipping only the absolutely necessary furniture, such as a couch, TV, beds, etc., since space is limited, especially if you find yourself having to live off base in a Japanese style home. For those unfamiliar with PAC region, it is important to make contact with your sponsor for even more guidance on living conditions.

Appliances such as a washer and dryer can be borrowed for the duration of the tour if you are living off base and your rental does not already provide it. Temporary loaner furniture will be available for 60-90 days, or until you receive your household goods (HHG). The only exception to this this rule will be for those that have shipped their belongings under the old AWL.


We understand that there will be an abundant amount of questions and concerns about this change in policy. Please know that we will keep you posted with the official MARADMIN as soon as we get word of its release. If you have any questions regarding this issue, please hang tight for the MARADMIN, it should answer many of your questions and give further guidance.

Check out this article on What to Expect When You PCS on the Patriot Express

Administrative Weight Limitation (awl) Change For Accompanied Marines To Japan


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