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Country Instructions - Germany

Shipment Instructions

Weight Restrictions
(a) Accompanied tours: Full JFTR weight allowance for all areas.
(b) Unaccompanied tours: Enlisted E-5 and above, and officers are authorized full JFTR. E-4 below normally authorized only UB allowance or 10 percent of full JFTR. Exceptions to this policy may be authorized under AF SUP/JFTR Vol 1 on a case-by-case basis. In addition, the ordering issuing agency should consult the Zeus file in the Personnel Data System (09ycov4/JFTR_TBL) to verify if government quarters or government furnishings are available. (CH)

(a) Accompanied tours: Full JFTR weight allowance for all areas.
(b) Unaccompanied tours: Weight allowances for single/unaccompanied personnel are in accordance with weights listed in Appendix V.
(c) Single/unaccompanied officers and personnel in grades of E7 through E9, assigned to the following APO numbers in the Kaiserslautern area are authorized full JFTR: 09009, 09012, 09021, 09054, 09180, 09227 and 09263.

Container/Crating Requirements No restrictions identified.

Hard Lift Area No restrictions identified.
Unaccompanied Baggage No restrictions identified.


Clearance Procedures, Requirements, and Restrictions
Customs clearance is arranged by designated officers at military terminals and by the receiving TMO on ITGBL shipments moving through commercial ports of entry. Identification of shipments for active duty US Forces is a prerequisite to import. Inspection may be made to determine goods are properly described and do not contain contraband. Documents on shipments for retired or separated personnel moving by PPGBL must be conspicuously marked with the words "RETIREMENT SHIPMENT" or "SEPARATION SHIPMENT" as applicable. Advise these personnel all customs and entry requirements remain a personal responsibility.


Alcoholic Beverages Importation in UB/HHG is prohibited.

Cigarettes/Tobacco Products Importation in UB/HHG is prohibited.

Cosmetics No restrictions identified.

Foodstuffs/Meats No restrictions identified.

Medications (Narcotics)/Pharmaceutical Products Private individuals to include personnel holding status under the NATO SOFA and the supplementary agreement are prohibited from introducing into Germany (in unaccompanied baggage or mail channels) any drugs or substances whose sale outside a pharmacy is prohibited by the German Pharmaceutical Law. Such drugs/substances can be imported only when in accompanied baggage and prescribed by a physician.

Electrical Equipment

Home Computers No restrictions identified.

TVs/VCRs No restrictions identified.

Other (i.e. Compatibility, ETC) No restrictions identified.


Service members shipping large items such as king and/or queen size box springs and mattresses, oversized sofas, or other large furniture items that cannot be disassembled, may encounter problems when residing in government or economy housing due to narrow stairwells. Economy living quarters are generally smaller than those in CONUS. Washers, dryers, ranges, refrigerators, kitchen cabinets, and wardrobes are furnished for government and economy quarters. (CH)


a. GENERAL: A health certificate no older than 20 days prior to shipment (10 days prior to shipment for intratheater transfers), a statement certifying pet originated from an area which had no rabies reported within a 12.5 mile radius, rabies shots are required not earlier than 30 days prior to and not more than 1 year from date of entry into Germany, and one copy of military orders must accompany the pet. Pets arriving unaccompanied by their owners require additional documentation from the host nation officials for import. Questions concerning unaccompanied pet importation or regarding the importation of animals other than dogs and cats, as well as plants and plant parts, may be submitted before importation to either a local German customs officer or may be referred to the USEUCOM Customs Executive Agency via the "Customs Hotline". Within Germany call DSN 381-7610/CIV 0621-730-7610 or from the CONUS 011-49-621-730-7610. E-mail inquires may be sent to or Written requests may be forwarded to the USEUCOM CUSTOMS EXECUTIVE AGENCY, ATTN: ECJ1-CEA-S, Unit 29931, APO AE 09086.

b. RESTRICTIONS: The state governments in Germany are currently debating restrictions to place on several breeds of "fighting dogs." Each of the 15 states will decide their own restrictions. Some states might require all breeds designated as fighting dogs be neutered, registered, and marked. In addition, these fighting dogs must pass a temperament test or they will be destroyed. The states have compiled a list of dangerous breeds that includes (but is not limited to): American Pitt Bull Terrier, American Staffordshire Terrier, Bandogge, Bull Mastiff, Fila Brasileira, Kangal, Matiff, Argentine Dogo, Dogue De Bordeaux, Staffordshire Bull Terrier, Neapolitan Mastiff, Spanish Mastiff, Caucasian Owtscharka, Tosa Inu, and Rhodesian Ridgeback. Military and civilian personnel owning one of the above breeds are encouraged to contact their sponsor prior to shipment of the dog to Germany. Additional information on pets at overseas installations can be obtained from

Privately Owned Firearms (POFs)

To avoid the possibility of German criminal prosecution for unauthorized possession of weapons or the possibility of punishment under the Uniform Code of Military Justice, privately owned firearms will not be shipped, handcarried, or transported in luggage to Germany until further notice. The ownership and possession of privately owned firearms is prohibited by German law unless the owner has a German Weapons Possession Card(Waffenbesitzkarte). Headquarters, USAREUR and German Federal Ministry of the Interior are developing procedures to enable military and civilian personnel assigned to Germany and their dependents to obtain these cards through the USAREUR Central Registry. This instruction will be modified or rescinded when the weapons permit procedures are finalized and implemented. (CH)

Privately Owned Vehicles (POVs)

The inland pickup and delivery of POV in Germany (program applies to personnel assigned to locations in the Federal Republic of Germany, Giessen and points south). Berlin and points north of Giessen are not included in this program.

(1) Military Communities Served: Each Area Support Group(ASG) Vehicle Processing Center (VPC) location and telephone numbers are provided in PPCIG, VOL II, Overseas, Appendix IV, Outloading Port for Privately Owned Vehicles.

(2) POV larger than 20 measurement tons (800 cubic feet) will incur excess cost unless an exception is granted for medical need (i.e., handicapped family members)or when joint spouse military couples elect to combine their 20 MT entitlement into one 40 MT entitlement. (CH)

(3) Inbound shipments (to Germany). To order, owner needs to: (CH)
(a)  Obtain USAREUR POV driver's license.(See b below)
(b) Obtain POV insurance.
(c) Obtain verification that POV has arrived at local VPC.
      1. Post card from local VPC.
      2. Name on weekly arrival list posted at local TMO/ITO (list provided by contractor).
      3. Copy of FAX listing via ITO for direct inquires.
(d)  Bring copy of PCS orders, driver's license, DD Form 788, USAREUR Registration ID and proof of insurance to contractor's office.
(e)  Ensure any damage or missing items are noted on DD FORM 788.
(f)  Show at scheduled time to receive POV.
(g)  Proceed to POV safety inspection station.
(h)  Proceed to vehicle registration.

(4) US State license plates are not required on POVs arriving in Germany since USAREUR plates are issued when the member picks up the POV. As some states provide a partial refund for plates turned-in prior to expiration date, members have the option to remove the plates when the POV is turned-in to the port for shipment. It is a member's responsibility to remove the plates. A claim for lost plates will not be authorized. (CH)

(5) POV Tracing: Log into the website, or contact the destination Vehicle Processing Center (VPC) toll free at 0130-842030. (CH)

b. USAREUR CERTIFICATE OF LICENSE: In order to register and operate a POV in Germany, a USAREUR certificate of license must be obtained which requires passing a very stringent test on European driving rules, requirements, and road signs. An individual must be in possession of a valid U.S. state license, or a valid license from another country, as a prerequisite for taking the test. Unit issued military operator's permits also meet the requirement for obtaining a USAREUR certificate of license, however, these permits can only be issued to service members and civilian employees. Family members cannot be issued a military operator's permit, therefore, family members not in possession of a valid license from the USA or another country, cannot be issued a USAREUR certificate of license. Any additions of different classes, such as a motorcycle endorsement must first be authorized on the valid state or country license. USAREUR is no longer permitted to issue learner's permits, or instructor's permits; and parents are not allowed to "teach" family members how to drive. Individuals arriving in Germany without a valid license desiring to obtain a USAREUR certificate of license must first complete requisite training and licensing in CONUS, or complete local German training and licensing requirements prior to being issued a USAREUR certificate of license. Cost of local training is expensive.  

(1) Air Force personnel must have a valid state of country license with a motorcycle endorsement, and a course completion card from the Motorcycle Safety Foundation in order to be licensed to operate a motorcycle in Germany. Persons who do not have a valid state or country motorcycle license will be required to be licensed at a German driving school at personal expense (approximate cost $1400.00). (CH)

(2) Army personnel must have a valid state or country license with a motorcycle endorsement, and are required to attend a motorcycle orientation course, take a 30-question written test, and then attend a motorcycle proficiency course in order to be licensed to operate a motorcycle in Europe. There is no cost for completion of these requirements. Persons who do not have a valid state or country motorcycle license will be required to be licensed at a German driving school (at personal expense, see approximate cost in (1) above), or obtain a state motorcycle license before being licensed to operate a motorcycle in Germany.

(3) Customers must be briefed prior to shipment of a motorcycle as to potential costs and the option to place their motorcycle in NTS.

(4) Accompanied personnel: Two POVs and two motorized recreational POVs, or one motorized and one non-motorized recreational vehicle are permitted to be registered in Germany.

(5) Unaccompanied personnel and single parent: One POV and one motorized or non-motorized recreational POV are permitted to be registered in Germany.

(6) Motorcycles will be rejected when the motorcycle has been altered or modified to change the center of gravity or wheel base from what was established by the manufacturer.  NOTE: A recreational vehicle is defined as a POV normally used only during certain seasons (for example, motorcycle, camper, motor home, and trailer). 

Gasoline/Catalytic Converters No restrictions.

Insurance/Safety Requirements
Service members should be Informed of the higher insurance rate for Privately Owned Vehicles (POV) in Germany, before shipping their POVs. Only insurance companies approved by the German Government are authorized to issue a 29a (proof of German Minimum third party liability insurance) to register a POV in the U.S. Forces system in Germany. There are two insurance systems service members can choose from in Germany. NATO Tariff and German Tariff. Several companies issue policies in the United States for registration of POVs in Germany. The differences in the systems are the following.

(1) NATO Tariff: Annual tariff rates are based on age and marital status (all payments can be made in US currency). The most expensive category personnel are individuals under 25 years of age and single.

(2) German Tariff: Rates are based on POV HP/PS/or KW, location where POV is registered and individual's driving record (substantiated by letter from service member's home insurance office in U.S. only). Payment in the local German currency is required.

e. SAFETY REQUIREMENTS: A POV shipped to Germany must also pass USAREUR safety standards before it can be registered for driving in Germany. The cost of repair work and parts are very expensive in Germany and should be done in CONUS before POV is delivered to the Vehicle Processing Center. Counselors need to stress to each member on orders to Germany. It is the member's responsibility to ensure POV meets USAREUR safety standards. This is best done before making delivery to the POE. The most common causes of POV inspection failures in Germany are:

(1) Tires: All tires must have at least 1.6mm tread over the complete tire surface. No regrooved tires are allowed; snow tires (if on vehicle) must be on the drive wheels; and there can be no mixing of radial and conventional tires.

(2) Exhaust System: No rusted out or leaking exhaust system components allowed. Exhaust systems with cutouts, fiberglass-packed, or straight through exhaust systems are not allowed.

(3) Brakes: A mismatch of 20 percent or more between wheels, as measured on the brake wheel drag machine. Hand brake must hold vehicle on incline.

(4) Wheel Alignment: Wheels must be able to be turned to full right or full left without jamming or rubbing any part of vehicle; tie rod steering arm assemblies must not be damaged or worn.

(5) Lights: All installed lights must be operational.

(6) Exterior Condition: Missing fenders, broken windows, extensive body damage, deterioration, broken springs, or oil leaks are not allowed. Foreign manufactured vehicle frames are usually an integral part of the body; therefore, rust damage is critical and will necessitate costly reconstruction to pass the inspection.

(7) Horns: POVs must be equipped with a horn and it must be operational.

(8) Modifications: Any modifications changing the vehicle body style (as to engine not being covered), altered bumpers which are not to manufacturers specifications, missing or damaged running boards, or tires protruding beyond the fender wells are not allowed. Dark tinted glass on the front driver's and passengers doors or on the front windshield that comes down from the top of the windshield more than 4 inches that makes it impossible to see the driver and occupants is prohibited by German law.

Sexually Explicit/Pornographic Material

No restrictions identified.

Transmitting Equipment

CB Radios, Mars Equipment
a. Germany has different rules and regulations governing the use of the Frequency Spectrum within their borders. As visitors in this country, we are subject to their rules and regulations. Violations of these rules and regulations governing the use of the Frequency Spectrum in Germany, can result in fines, confiscation of equipment, and imprisonment.

b. The frequency band equipment is authorized to operate if determined by the nations Spectrum Allocation Tables(SAT). The Spectrum Allocation Table in Germany is very different from the US (i.e., U.S. cordless phones operate in the German cellular phone band but will cause local interference with the German cellular network).

c. In the US the FCC verifies all transmitters (legal) sold adhere to the US Spectrum Allocation Tables and are marked with FCC numbers (i.e., FCC: 1234567). Transmitters with the FCC numbers are not legal for use in Germany.

d. The following U.S. manufactured items are NOT authorized for use in Germany: CB Radios, cellular phones, cordless phones, baby monitors, wireless intercoms, radio frequency remotes, radio controlled vehicles, and radio frequency wireless LANs.  NOTE: Items above can be purchased in Germany that adhere to the German Spectrum Allocation Tables.

MARs Radio Operators. Importation of this equipment is not prohibited. However, radio operators you must coordinate with the local German authorities (Bundespost) to acquire a German license prior to turning on the equipment.

Amateur/Ham Radios Radio Operators. Importation of this equipment is not prohibited. However, radio operators you must coordinate with the local German authorities (Bundespost) to acquire a German license prior to turning on the equipment.

Dish Antennas Importation of TV satellite dishes is not prohibited. However, installation and operation must be approved by the local Bundespost.

Administrative procedures: The 5th SIGCOM, Worms, Germany, is the Office of Primary Responsibility (OPR) for processing requests for exceptions. Questions concerning transmitting equipment should be submitted to the 5th SIGCOM as follows:

Mail: HQ, 5th Signal Command
ATTN: Frequency Management Officer
APO AE 09056

Tel: DSN: 380-5346/5347
COMM: 011-49-621-730-5346/5347
FAX: (EXT) 5351


Personnel contemplating retirement, separation or relocating dependents to Germany should be counseled that all customs entry requirements to include payment of duties and taxes remain the responsibility of the member and is a personal matter between the member and the German Government. Additional customs and tax information may be obtained by contacting the USEUCOM Customs Executive Agency, as noted in paragraph 6, above.

Stuffed Wildlife/Animals/Plants Restrictions No restrictions identified.











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