Taking a leave while you are serving in the army is a lot different than mentioning it to the HR person from your office. You need to first talk to your commander about it using a formal protocol. You have to walk up to him and stand at parade rest. Then, you will have to mention that you want to take a leave and the reason for it, which in your case if for a vacation.
Only if your commander accepts your answers, he will take you to the squad leader, where you have to repeat the entire process. The squad leader usually sits in your platoon sergeant’s office. He will usually ask you more questions regarding the vacation, so make sure your answers are consistent.
Once he approves your vacation request, which can take days, you are asked to fill the DA 31 form, which is available online for free. Download a DA 31 fillable form and fill it up using our guide. Remember that the form needs to be submitted at least 29 or more days before your vacation.
Rather than downloading the form and filling it up, you can simply use Movavi PDF Editor to add the details using a computer or laptop. It is completely free to use. Remember, no one else can fill the form for you but yourself. You can either put your digital signature on the fillable form or sign it yourself once your print the filled up form for submitting to your commander.
In the first part of your DA 31 form, you have to enter your control number followed by your name in the sequence of – last, first, and middle or initial name. Then, you have to type in your social security number, followed by your rank in the United States military and the date on which you filled the form.
There is also a section to fill in the address of the place where you are taking your vacation to. In the Type of Leave column, you will be given four choices to choose from – ordinary, emergency, permissive TDY, and other. Since you are taking a vacation, check the box before ordinary leave. Permissive TDY is the leave you are eligible to take when you are transitioning from an army person to civilian life. During this leave, you are expected to carry on house hunting and jobs for former military personnel. In the next column, you will have to mention the origin of your station and its phone number.
Fill in the number of days of leave have collected, the number of days you requested, and if they are more than the collected amount. In total, military personnel are eligible for 30 days of leave every year, which includes the weekends and public holidays. This means every month you get 2.5 days of leave. If you want to save up for your vacation, you can do so by working throughout the month. If you don’t take a single day off during your duty, you’ll get to a leave for all 30 days.
In the following column, you have to write down the dates of your vacation. Don’t forget to sign in the signature of requestor column, otherwise, the form would be considered invalid and your request won’t be accepted.
Your supervisor’s signature is equally important. In supervisor recommendation tick next to the approval box and in the next column take his sign. The following column also requires a signature from three people, which are taken on three different dates.
The first one is taken when you depart for your vacation. Enter the date and time of your departure and take the departure authority’s signature next to it. In case you need to extend your vacation period, you need to visit your nearby military office and get it approved. Write down the date and time it was approved and get the signature of the approval authority.
In the last section of this column, you have to enter the date and time of your return along with the return authority’s signature.
In the third part, you have to mention the names of the people who are accompanying you on the vacation. You have to write their name in the similar order like you wrote yours in Part 1, which is – last name, first name, middle or initial name. In the next section, mention your relationship with the person, their date of birth (necessary only if they are younger than 18 years of age) and their passport number.
Part 4 will ask for your designation and location of headquarters, accounting citation, date the travel authorization document was issued, travel order number, and title and signature of the order authorizing official.
In case there are any last minute changes in your destination or you are going to the destination but a couple days later, you must inform your commander immediately. If you go to another destination in between your vacation time, you need to inform that as well. Accidents and injuries occur unannounced. If anything happens, visit your nearest military medical facility and get the treatment.
Once the date of your arrival approaches, you should report to your duty station within 24 hours on the leave’s last day.
Many duty stations do a risk assessment test with you. If you are going to drive during vacation time, you will have to fill another form called TRIPS, which can be downloaded from the internet for free. You can fill up the form using Movavi PDF Editor at zero costs.
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