Travel & Tours

What Is Not True About DoD Travel Policy: Common Myths

Embarking on a journey with the Department of Defense travel policy? Amidst the excitement lies a labyrinth of misinformation.

Unravel the truth, liberate your worries, and discover the real essence of DoD travel.

Are you puzzled about what’s genuine and what’s not? Navigate the maze of myths with us and embark on your travels with confidence.


In recent years, the Department of Defense (DoD) travel policy has undergone significant changes to adapt to evolving security concerns, budget constraints, and the ever-changing landscape of global travel. With so much information available, it’s essential to separate fact from fiction when it comes to what is not true about DoD travel policy. We’ll debunk some common misconceptions and shed light on the realities of traveling under the DoD’s regulations.


The Department of Defense’s travel policy is a critical aspect of military and government operations, playing a pivotal role in ensuring the efficient movement of personnel and resources. However, there are several misconceptions surrounding it. Let’s explore what is not true about DoD travel policy.

1: DoD Travel is Only for Military Personnel

Contrary to popular belief, DoD travel is not exclusive to military personnel; it is a comprehensive policy that extends its benefits to civilian employees, contractors, and, in some cases, even dependents, with the overarching goal of facilitating various mission-related and official travel requirements.

2: DoD Travel is Inflexible

DoD travel policy is designed to be flexible, allowing for adjustments to meet mission objectives. It accommodates changes in itineraries, unexpected delays, and mission extensions. It ensures that military personnel and government employees can adapt to evolving circumstances while fulfilling their duties efficiently. Flexibility is a crucial aspect of ensuring successful travel under the policy.

3: DoD Travel Doesn’t Cover Dependents

DoD travel policy recognizes the importance of family and often includes provisions for dependents, understanding that maintaining family bonds is essential for the well-being of service members and civilian employees alike. In certain situations, dependents can receive travel allowances to accompany their military or government sponsor.

4: DoD Travel is Always Fully Funded

While DoD travel may provide funding for certain expenses, it is not always fully funded. Travelers may be required to cover some costs, such as personal expenses or upgrades, out of their pocket. Therefore, meticulous planning and budgeting are crucial when embarking on DoD-sponsored trips.

5: DoD Travel Doesn’t Allow for Personal Time

DoD travel policy recognizes the importance of work-life balance, and it encourages travelers to strike a healthy equilibrium by incorporating personal time into their travel plans, allowing them to explore destinations or spend quality time with their families.

6: DoD Travel Requires Excessive Paperwork

While there is paperwork involved in DoD travel, it has become more streamlined and user-friendly in recent years, with digital tools and online platforms simplifying the process to reduce administrative burden, making it easier for travelers to navigate.

7: DoD Travel is Not Suitable for Civilian Employees

Civilian employees are eligible for DoD travel benefits under certain circumstances; the policy is not exclusively reserved for military personnel, and civilians can take advantage of these benefits when their roles align with DoD missions, promoting inclusivity and collaboration within the department.

8: DoD Travel Doesn’t Offer Travel Insurance

DoD travel policy often includes travel insurance provisions, ensuring that travelers are protected in case of unexpected events or emergencies during their journey, providing them with peace of mind while on official business. It’s important to review the policy to understand the extent of coverage.

9: DoD Travel is Risky

DoD travel, prioritizing safety, implements robust risk assessment and mitigation strategies, ensuring reliability and responsibility in official journeys. Trustworthy travel with DoD.

10: DoD Travel Doesn’t Allow for Flexibility in Accommodations

DoD travel policy allows for flexibility in choosing accommodations, ensuring that travelers can have a comfortable and personalized experience while adhering to the policy’s guidelines and budget constraints.

11: DoD Travel Doesn’t Consider Family Needs

The DoD recognizes the importance of family support and understands that the success of military personnel often hinges on the well-being of their dependents, thus, the policy often considers family needs when planning official travel, ensuring that the well-being of dependents is taken into account.

12: DoD Travel is Limited to Specific Destinations

DoD travel is not limited to specific destinations; instead, travelers can be deployed to various locations worldwide, depending on the mission’s requirements, providing them with a wide range of travel opportunities and experiences.

13: DoD Travel Doesn’t Support Education and Training

Education and training are essential components of DoD travel policy, fostering career development by allowing for travel related to professional development, training programs, educational pursuits, and skill enhancement.

14: DoD Travel is Exclusively for Business

While DoD travel primarily serves official and mission-related purposes, it also includes provisions for personal and leisure travel, allowing travelers to combine business and leisure seamlessly when it aligns with their objectives and the DoD’s policies.

15: DoD Travel is Overly Complex

While DoD travel policy has its complexities, it is not insurmountable. Hence, with the right guidance and understanding, travelers can navigate the policy effectively, making the most of its benefits, and ensuring a smooth travel experience.

The Truth About AO Approvals in DoD Travel Policy

According to the JTR, AOs cannot approve expenses that are not specifically authorized by the regulation. Travelers should claim expenses not covered by JTR by providing justification for reimbursement. The AO will review the justification and determine whether to approve the expense. If the AO deems the expense necessary and reasonable, they can approve it, even if not specified in the JTR.

Here are some examples of expenses that are not typically covered by the JTR:

Personal expenses, such as entertainment, souvenirs, or gifts.

Expenses that are not incurred in connection with official travel, such as travel to visit family or friends.

Expenses that are considered to be excessive or extravagant.

For expenses not covered by JTR, travelers should consult their AO for reimbursement guidance.


What Is Not True About DoD Travel Policy? Separating fact from fiction is crucial when it comes to understanding the Department of Defense travel policy. While there are misconceptions about its scope and limitations, the policy is designed to provide flexibility, support, and security for military personnel, civilian employees, and their dependents, ensuring that they can carry out their duties effectively and with peace of mind.

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