WELCOME ABOARD OKINAWA
Welcome Aboard Okinawa

Welcome to Okinawa!


We want to extend a very warm welcome to everyone who is relocating to Okinawa in the future.  Okinawa is a fabulous place to be assigned to and we want to ensure your tour starts off right by providing every possible resource to ensure your relocation to Okinawa is as easy as possible.  

The 2019 Peak Relocation Season is almost upon us and MARADMIN 128-19 provides detailed information and guidance on the moving process for Marines.   For transporting pets, please pay close attention to paragraph 9 of the MARADMIN.   


We have provided an Accompanied PCS Flowchart (March 2019) and an Unaccompanied PCS Flowchart (March 2019)  for Marines and their families as  "one-stop shopping"  with step-by-step diagrams for the major PCS processes needed to successfully relocate to Okinawa.  

We also have a Navy Accompanied PCS Flowchart (March 2019) and a Navy Unaccompanied PCS Flowchart (March 2019) for Navy personnel and their families to assist in their PCS move to Okinawa. 


Learn more about where to shop, eat and play on Okinawa? Looking for transportation schedules for the Green Line and the off-base bus system?  Please download The Liberty App as it provide this and much, much more on what is available on Okinawa.


Okinawa is located approximately 400 miles south of mainland Japan. Okinawa is home to III Marine Expeditionary Force and Marine Corps Installation Pacific (MCIPAC)Marine Corps Base, Camp Smedley. D. Butler (MCB Camp Butler), which falls under MCIPAC, includes Camp Kinser, Camp Foster, Camp Courtney, Camp Hansen, Camp Schwab, and Camp Gonsalves. Okinawa is also home to  Marine Corps Air Station Futenma. Major subordinate commands falling under the  III Marine Expeditionary Force, include  3d Marine Logistics Group, 3d Marine Division, 1st Marine Aircraft Wing, 3d Marine Expeditionary Brigade and 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit. Navy presence on Okinawa includes Commander Fleet Activities, Okinawa with its tenant commands and the  U.S. Naval Hospital Okinawa on Camp Foster. Naval facilities are physically located throughout Okinawa (on Kadena Air Base, Camp Shields and White Beach Naval Facility). There is also a significant Air Force and Army presence on Okinawa located at Kadena Air Base and Torii Station.

  

Please read the Joint Reception Center (JRC) Welcome Aboard Letter for ALL E-5 and below unaccompanied Marines and Sailors assigned to Marine units arriving on Okinawa.

The Military Installations  application provides a way to find out important information on DoD military installations around the world.  To access and view information on Okinawa, ensure "Military Installation" is listed in the first box and then type Camp S. D. Butler in the "Search" " box and click on Camp S. D. Butler  from the list menu.

In addition you can access the Plan My Move application by clicking on the "Plan My Move" Menu on the top of the Military Installations application page.  Then type the name of your current installation and then the name of your new installation.  Please ensure you click on either the  "Service Member" or "Family Member" buttons. 


The Okinawa PCS “Must Know" Information (April 2019)   document contains important relocation information needed by Service Members and their families to assist them during their relocation to Okinawa.  We have now added the Accompanied and Unaccompanied PCS Flowcharts, which provides step-by-step diagrams of each of the major relocation processes, to the Okinawa PCS "Must Know Information" document.

In the event of an emergency conditions on Okinawa caused by a natural disaster or crisis, all non-essential personnel may be evacuated off-island.  The III MEF Family Emergency Evacuation Webpage contains Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) and all of the forms need to compile an Emergency Evacuation Package (EEP) for Marines and their families to use to prepare for this situation.

Visit our Relocation Services Webpage to sign up for our workshops, find out about our locations and hours of operation, get information on moving with our Smooth Move Toolkit and find out more information on being a sponsor with our Sponsor Toolkit. 

The Military OneSource webpage is a central hub and go-to-place for the military community. Find out more about benefits and prepare for the big stuff – deployments, reintegration, moves, parenthood, retirement, managing finances and much more.

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We have provided an Accompanied PCS Flowchart (March 2019) and an Unaccompanied PCS Flowchart (March 2019)  for Marines and their families as  "one-stop shopping"  with step-by-step diagrams for the major PCS processes needed to successfully relocate to Okinawa.  


We also have a Navy Accompanied PCS Flowchart (March 2019) and an Navy Unaccompanied PCS Flowchart (March 2019) For Navy personnel and their families to assist in their PCS move to Okinawa. 

Driving and Transportation

Please watch the "Drive Safe Okinawa" video explains to newly arriving drivers the rules of the road in Okinawa and how they may differ from driving in the United States.


Don’t know where the swimming pool is located on Camp Foster?  Here are a two options for maps for Marine Corps installations situated on the beautiful island of Okinawa, Japan.  Please feel free to print or download Map Group #1 or Map Group #2  to find out locations for many of facilities involved in the Relocation process. 

The Japanese Traffic Regulations for SOFA Licensed Drivers that covers the common elements of Japanese traffic regulations for Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA) sponsored personnel.

Understanding Japanese Road Signs is an important part of driving in Japan and is testable as part of the SOFA Driver’s License written exam.  Please take the time to become familiar with them.


The Green Line webpage contains information and policies on The Green Line, along with the timetables and schedules on Camp to Camp Express Service and the internal camp shuttles.  

The Bus Map Okinawa webpage contains detailed information on all Okinawa and outer island bus terminals and companies, current bus routes and timetables, how to take the bus and fare information.  It also provides information on the Okinawa Monorail system. 

The  What To Do If You Are In a Traffic Accident brochure contains useful phone numbers, instructions on what to do if you are involved in an accident or injured, reporting accidents and much more.

Safe Driving in Japan provides information you need to know to be a safer and better driver in Japan.

Renewing your Stateside Drivers' License (www.dmv.org)


The Driver's Licensing pamphlet (March 2017) from the Base Installation Safety Office (ISO) contains information on obtaining the Status of Forces Privately Owned Vehicle (POV) driver's license to include licensing section hours of operation, requirements on licensing, renewal and learner permits.

The Joint Services Vehicle Registration Office webpage provides information on vehicle registration, inspection, and safety standards in accordance with Japanese laws, U.S. Forces Japan Instructions, and Marine Corps Installations Pacific Orders.

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Housing 


IMPORTANT NOTE:  All accompanied Marines are now required to check into the MCIPAC Regional Housing Office, located at Camp Foster Building 361, after they check into the DoD Housing Office, within 5 business days for in-processing and TLA certification paperwork.  (25 January 2018) 

MCIPAC Policy Letter 12-14 covers the assignment of dual service couples (military member married to another military member) to Military Family Housing.

The Kadena Air Force Website links two webpages to its page: Okinawa Military Family Housing Office  and The Kadena Family Housing  webpages, both of which have current information on Military Family Housing, Housing Management Office hours of operations and, locations, Housing Assignment Application forms, policies and pictures of military family housing on Okinawa.  Starting in 2017, on-base Military Housing is conducting a five-year Military Housing renovation project that will impact the number of available units for inbound service members. 

The  Family Housing Assignment Flow Charts - On & Off Base   are provided to assist Service Members in the housing assignment process for on and off base housing.

MCIPAC/MCB Butler Bulletin 11101 (17 May 2018)  directs a mandatory assignment to Bachelor Housing for unaccompanied Marines and attached Navy personnel in Japan for E-7 and below, W-1 through W-3 and O-1 through O-3 personnel. 

Administrative Household Goods (HHG) Weight Allowance Locations - Per Diem, Travel, and Transportation Allowance Committee (PDTATAC) AP-AW-01  (dated 1 November 2017) lists the weight allowance restrictions for USMC and USN personnel on Okinawa (See page 5).    

If having issues with your on or off base housing, the following flyers provide a 3-Step Resolution Process for Off-Base and On-Base Housing!  (February 2019)


Pets 

Japan Pet Importation Requirements is a link to the Government of Japan website containing Japanese laws and regulations, quarantine requirements and procedures for importing pets from designated and other regions. 

The Government of Japan Import Guide for Pets - Non Designated Regions (March 2018) provides a guide to the  process to import pets into Japan from all non-designated regions.  

The Government of Japan Import Guide for Pets - Designated Regions (Iceland, Australia, New Zealand, Fiji Islands, Hawaii, and Guam) (March 2018) provides a guide on the process to import pets from the designated regions of Iceland, Australia, New Zealand, Fiji Islands, Hawaii and Guam.

III MEF/MCIPAC Order 10570.1 provides policy and direction on the proper care and control of domestic pets, registration and deregistration policies and requirements on pets for all SOFA status personnel living on and off base and the prohibitions on certain dog breeds on Okinawa.

U.S. Army, Japan Veterinary Service on Kadena Air Base provides command and control of all veterinary elements in support of U.S. Forces on Okinawa. Their webpage provides information on location of clinic, hours of operation, installation policies and traveling with pets. 

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provides pet shipment checklists, airline pet polices, certification requirements and much more.

The U.S Department of Agriculture webpage provides information on traveling with pets to include basic information on exporting and importing pets.

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Marine and Family Programs - Resources


Marine and Family Programs - Resources provides a wide range of services designed to assist you in maintaining a high state of personal and professional readiness. Our goal is to ensure that you are prepared. Marine and Family Programs - Resources is NOT just for Families! We serve single and married Marine/Sailors, family members, military retirees, DoD civilians, widows and widowers. The Marine and Family Programs - Resources provides:

Information and Referral and Relocation Services webpages provide access to the 2nd Quarter 2019 INFORMATION & REFERRAL DATABASE, help for foreign born spouses, retirees, widows and widowers, pre and post-move assistance, Military OneSource , base and community information, Loan Locker, Sponsorship Training, Newcomer's Orientation, and Smooth Move Workshops.
Email: MCBB_ReloAssist@usmc.mil           
Commercial Phone: 011-81-98-970-8395
Commercial Fax: 011-81-98-970-7229
DSN: 645-8395
DSN Fax: 645-7229

Personal Financial Management : Webpage contains a wide variety of resources and information to include dates, times and location and how to sign-up for upcoming personal financial workshops, financial calculators, Consumer Awareness, Financial Planning, Housing and much more. 


Employment Assistance : Job listings, referrals for all family members, resume assistance, interviewing, employment workshops, transition assistance, and the pre-retirement workshop.  


Marine and Family Programs - Resources
MCCS, MCB Camp Butler Unit 35026
FPO AP 96373-5026

Newcomers' Orientation


Sign-up for Newcomers' Orientation

Start your tour off right. Okinawa is a wonderful duty station and great place live for the entire family. Learn about this beautiful island and all the opportunities you can take advantage of during your tour. Meet and listen to representatives from a multitude of service organizations and learn about the customs and culture of Okinawa and about your responsibilities as a member of the military community.

There is a Youth & Teen Tour designed for family members' ages 10-18 years old that your child will not want to miss that shows them what is available to them to include the library, bowling alley. Youth and Teen Centers and much, much more!.

Newcomers' Orientation Welcome Aboard (NOWA) is mandatory for all accompanied (all ranks) USMC and USN Service Members, civilian employees, family members (military and civilian) age 10 and up, and all unaccompanied USMC and USN (E-6 and above) and civilian (all grades).  New arrivals are required to attend NOWA within 2 weeks of arrival.

E-5 and below (unaccompanied) will attend the Joint Reception Center (JRC) brief. Please call 645-5395 for more information regarding JRC.

**NOWA is mandatory per MCO 1320.11G and III MEF/MCIPAC Order 1754.1A.

**Attendance at NOWA must be confirmed prior to MCB Safety Office issuing SOFA Privately Owned Vehicle (POV) Driver's License in accordance with MCIPAC Order 5560.1.

**Completion of NOWA is also required before any Service Member is granted off-installation leave or liberty in Japan as per MCBJ/IIIMEFO 1050.7A.

NOWA is offered every Wednesday from 7:15 AM until 4:00 PM and is held at the Camp Foster Community Center, Building 5908. Sponsors can call the following numbers: Kinser 637-2815; Foster 645-2104/8395; Courtney 622-7332; Hansen 623-4522/4860; Schwab 625-2622 or click here to register both the active duty member and family members after the final flight information is received.  Transportation is available from the Westpac Lodging. The sponsor must request transportation at the time of NOWA registration.

Please contact MCB Base Safety Office at 645-3183/2862 to inquire about taking the SOFA POV Licensing exam prior to attending NOWA. Orders, approved Area Clearance message, and a valid stateside driver's license are required to obtain a SOFA POV Driver's License. Civilian personnel must check with MCB Base Safety for any other specific requirements.

Childcare is provided (free of charge) by the MCCS Family Care Program on a limited space-available basis and must be reserved in advance. Note: Infant Care space is extremely limited. Sponsors should call the CYP Resource & Referral Office at 645-4117 for reservations prior to the newcomer's arrival. 1-2 days prior to attending NOWA, the inbound family must complete the required paperwork and turn it in at the CYP Resource and Referral Office, which is located at Camp Foster in Building 495. Once this process is completed, the child can be dropped off at the Child Development Care/School Age Care Center/Family Care Provider the morning of NOWA. Parents also have the option of attending NOWA at different dates, so one of them can watch their child(ren) while the other is attending NOWA.

Newcomers should also bring extra copies of the Service Member's orders and copies of the Area Clearance/Dependent Entry Approval for Tricare re-enrollment. If the newcomer does not have these documents, they can re-enroll by going to the Tricare Office located at the U.S. Naval Hospital Okinawa at a later date.

 

Schools and Childcare

 

The MCB Camp Butler School Liaison Officer assists Service Members and their families as an advocate and conduit to the school systems.

MCCS Child and Youth Programs (CYP) provides a wide spectrum of services and support for military youth to include child care and youth and teen centers.  Please visit the CYP webpage to find out the locations, hours of operation and contact numbers for the CYP facilities on Camps Foster, Kinser, Courtney and McTureous .

To find out more about registering for child care or the youth and teen program, or to learn more about getting certified as a baby sitter please visit the CYP Downloads Webpage.

The MCCS Youth and Teen Program provide a variety of activities and programs for children in kindergarten through 12th grade.

Please visit the Exceptional Family Member Program (EFMP) webpage to find out about events and workshops, enrollment information, view videos designed to help EFMP families and to request an appointment. 

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Sponsorship Forms and Information   

Are you assigned as a sponsor and not sure what you need to do to be a good sponsor?  Marine and Family Programs – Resources provides Sponsorship Training weekly at different camps. Sign-up today for a Sponsorship Training class through the Marine and Family Programs webpage.

The III MEF/MCIPAC/MCBB Order 1754.1A  (March 2019) provides guidance and policy on the Personnel Sponsorship Program in support of Service Members assigned to Marine units in Japan.

The Sponsorship Checklist (April 2019) provides an itemized list of items for sponsors to keep track of items they need to do in order to be a GREAT sponsor.


Are you coming to Okinawa and need a sponsor?  Fill out a Sponsorship Request Form (NAVMC 11799 - July 2017) and send it to our Relocation Assistance email address: mcbb_reloassist@usmc.mil.  We will forward your request to your Unit Sponsorship Coordinator (USC) so they can assign you a sponsor. 

Please download the Accompanied PCS Flowchart (March 2019) or the Unaccompanied PCS Flowchart (March 2019) to assist Marines and their families in completing those important steps in the relocation process to Okinawa!

We also have a Navy Accompanied PCS Flowchart (March 2019) and a Navy Unaccompanied PCS Flowchart (March 2019)  to assist Navy personnel and their families with their relocation to Okinawa. 

Need help getting started with your move? The PCS Checklist for Incoming Personnel (April 2019) can help you stay on top of the things you need to do before you PCS to Okinawa.

The Okinawa PCS “Must Know" Information (April 2019) document contains important relocation information needed by Service Members and their families to assist them during their relocation to Okinawa.  We have now added the Accompanied and Unaccompanied PCS Flowcharts, which provides step-by-step diagrams of each of the major relocation processes, to the Okinawa PCS "Must Know Information" document. 

Starting during 2017, on-base Military Housing will undergo a five-year Military Housing Renovation Project, which will impact the number of available housing units for inbound service members.

The Family Housing Assignment Flow Charts - On & Off Base  provides Service Members information on the on and off-base housing assignment processes.

The 2019 Peak Relocation Season is almost upon us and MARADMIN 128-19 provides detailed information and guidance on the moving process for Marines.   For transporting pets, please pay close attention to paragraph 9 of the MARADMIN.   

Per MARADMIN 221/19, effective 2 April 2019, all accompanied Marines and Sailors (attached to a USMC units) are eligible to bring their full Joint Travel Regulations (JTR) weight allowance to Okinawa. Unaccompanied Service Members (USMC and USN attached to a USMC units) are allowed to bring 600 lbs.

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Travel and Arrival Information


Don’t know where the swimming pool is located on Camp Foster? Take a look at the maps of the Marine Corps installations situated on the beautiful island of Okinawa, Japan to find out locations and hours of operations for most facilities.

If arriving at the Naha Airport Domestic Terminal, please take a look the attached photos and information to familiarize yourself about Naha Airport. You can also go on the English webpage of the Naha Domestic Passenger Terminal to find out more about ground transportation access from the Naha Domestic Terminal and domestic arrival routes in the Naha terminal.

Many Service Members and their families arrive on Okinawa via the “Patriot Express” which arrives at the Air Mobility Command (AMC) Terminal at Kadena Air Base. 

Travelers Tips contains information on the TSA screening process, 3-1-1 for carry-ons, permitted and prohibited items and much more.


III MEF/MCIPAC 7220.1A - TLA Order  contains information on policies regarding Temporary Living Allowance (TLA) and family housing for Marine commands on Okinawa.

The TLA Brochure and TLA Information Sheet contains local area information on TLA to include Installation Personnel Administration Center (IPAC) contact numbers and governing policies on when TLA is authorized. 

The Westpac Lodging webpage contains general information and amenities provided at the Westpac.  There is also information on the other MCCS lodges on Okinawa , along with hours of operations and other associated links.

Here are some  useful Japanese phrases to use after arrival in Japan.

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