Is it time for deployment? Are you stressed trying to get everything in order? I definitely get stressed when I know a deployment is coming. I feel like all of the tasks I need to complete beforehand start to pile up. First things first, start a checklist of everything you need to accomplish before D-day. Now get to it!
Pre-Deployment To Do List:
Obtain a POA
Regardless of if you are married, engaged or a girlfriend/boyfriend, If you deal with finances of any sort for you SO, get a power of attorney (POA) – That is, if your SO doesn’t have someone in place to take care of his/her bills, banks, credit cards, etc etc.
Mostly you will only need a general POA, but if you are making any special/big purchases, get a special POA just to safe. For example: I closed on our house a week after my husbands 1st deployment and I’m so grateful I had all my power of attorney paperwork squared away. It made everything so much easier.
Gather login/password information for your SO
I like to keep a little ruled notebook with passwords and login information for bills, mypay, tricare, etc. in case I need to log in and happen to forget the information. It can be hard to reach your SO to ask him/her what the information is again. I pay a lot of our bills online, so this makes it extremely simple for me to sit down at the computer and handle. I’m like a bill paying machine, 15 minutes and done!
Get your passport
For any reason, if you even have the possibility of visiting your SO overseas, you will need your passport. Maybe your SO gets hurt in combat and is flown to Germany, you will need it to go visit!
Get your Boxes and Customs forms
Getting all your mailing needs from the post office to send Care Packages is definitely a good way to keep organized. For example: We don’t really use our entryway coat closet, I store all of my shipping materials in the top of it so I know where everything is. I like to sit down on my living room floor with a glass of wine and some movies while I decorate and put my boxes together! Need help filling out a customs form?
Red Cross Information
This is definitely a MUST DO and a very important step. Gather your red cross contact number. In case of an emergency, IE: a death in the family, or something happens to you, your SO will have to be contacted VIA the red cross. Make sure you have all of your service members information: service member’s rank, address (unit, company and location where he or she is stationed), social security number, and branch of service.
Copies of your SO’s Deployment Letter
In case you have to break a contract (IE: cable satellite bill), you will need a copy of their orders or a deployment letter stating that they are on deployment. These are good to have when you want to suspend any accounts or break contracts to save some money during deployment. (See this article for ways on saving money: Saving Money During Deployment.)
A lot of people like to put all of this information a binder and lock it up safe in a file cabinet somewhere. It’s definitely great to keep everything together and organized. Less stressful when the time comes that you may need to use it! Good luck and stay strong!