Good evening! Will after boot camp graduation will the sailors check their large duffle bags at the airport and then be able to take a backpack as a carry-on. Or does she have to take everything as carry-on? She is trying to figure out what she would like us to bring to graduation. She will be going to Goose Creek, SC. Thanks in advance.
Q's Momma - Thank you!!
So, just to clarify there is a difference when your sailors are flying out in large groups right after PIR. Most likely, they are back to wearing the seasonal dress uniform and thus, they will not be allowed to wear their black backpack on their back while in uniform, only their seabag.
Others that might be traveling from GL after their A school to C school, or to their duty station, traveling on holiday / leave, or traveling from another A school to duty station will likely be wearing civilian clothing. When your sailor is reporting to their duty station, they need to find out from their sponsor what they are expected to be wearing to report to command, and if they will be able to change into their uniform after traveling, and before reporting. Many of these details will actually be addressed to your sailors both at BC & A school, I am just sharing what I recall from our experiences.
It is honestly, not too hard to spot military traveling, even on holiday leave, without being in uniform. In some places, the less conspicuous they are, the better. And I think that is why there have been some changes at GL with regards to whether they wear their uniforms in public or not.
Hi Happynurse - my son’s PIR was in May and he flew out to Pensacola the next day. Before he left for boot camp, he picked the things he would want in Pensacola and boxed them up for us to send when he arrived there rather than having to deal with them in the airport. His seabag and backpack were FULL and really couldn’t have gotten anything else in there. The first couple of weeks at Pensacola, he was required to wear his uniform outside of his barracks, so it wasn’t a problem. He had the clothes he had traveled to boot camp in to wear in his room, so he was comfortable with that. We ended up driving his boxes to him the week he leveled up to being able to wear civilian clothes because it happened to be the weekend of Memorial Day and - well - beach! :)
I’m not sure how much space they have in GC, but my son’s room is small and he doesn’t have a lot of space for extras - basically he has a few civilian outfits and his uniforms plus his gaming set up. I would say they have a lot to manage getting to the airport and through the travel and then getting to their new post and the less they have to juggle, the less stressful that will be.
After BC, they can check their seabags and they have a black backpack and their Dress uniforms they have to carry. They don't have a ton of room so keep in mind that she may edit what she takes from GL and she cannot take ANY of it back to base. You will have to meet her at the airport at O'dark Thirty to give it to her. ( or whenever her flight is...) Undergarments are the top requested item!! Civies... One or 2 outfits to start is TONS. It will be a while before they get to wear them. They usually want to check those bags quickly since they are heavy and there is NO where to store them!) Also, my sailor found that his body changed a great deal at Bootcamp. He was more muscular and therefore many of his old clothes just didn't fit right. He was also male and 18 and still growing like a weed but she may encounter a similar issue, just be aware you may be taking stuff back home or donating it there. If she has a laptop, you can bring that and she can move some of her gear from her backpack to her duffel to make room. Edit or plan to ship for most things. My sailor has ended up keeping very few of his Childhood belongings. We still have some stuff in his room that he packed before he left that he has kept but not moved to where he is stationed. We have the space and it's only a couple of boxes so we don't mind storing them but it did surprise me how much he got rid of when he came home the second time! (almost 2 years in)
As I recall, my son had to check his seabag and had us bring his small gym duffle bag for the few items he could carry onto the plane. The only extras we brought him were his good running shoes, a couple of sweatshirts and swim trunks. He didn't want to take much, as he planned to buy anything else he needed after arriving in Goose Creek.