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DTS Travel Instructions

Does not apply to Institutional Training or Group Blocks*

On 6 July 2015, the Per Diem, Travel, and Transportation Allowance Committee issued a revision to the Joint Travel Regulation which requires the use of the Defense Travel System (DTS) and/or the Commercial Travel Office (CTO) to make lodging reservations, effective 1 September 2015. As a point of clarification provided by the Defense Travel Management Office, this mandate applies to all travel functions currently supported by DTS and those that will be supported in the future as they become available.

  1. When going TDY for business on an Army installation, travelers (both military and civilian) are required to specify the installation as the destination, not nearby communities. Authorizing officials must ensure that the appropriate destination is used.
  2. Travelers to a DoD integrated lodging program pilot site will be directed to use either government, privatized, or DoD preferred commercial lodging before using other commercial lodging options. If TDY to one of these sites and available directed lodging is not used, lodging reimbursement is limited to the amount the government would have paid, if used.
  3. In the "Travel" section of DTS, travelers TDY to a government installation will first be directed to "GOVT DOD” (government-owned) lodging on that installation, if available. Note that official lodging on Army installations in CONUS, HI, AK and OR have been privatized, so the "GOVT DOD" tab will not display when TDY to most Army installations. Service members must use GOVT DoD lodging if available, or their lodging reimbursement will be limited to the amount that the government would have paid if used. Limited lodging reimbursement also applies to civilians who are TDY to an integrated lodging program pilot site and decline available "GOVT DOD” lodging.
  4. If "GOVT DOD" lodging is not available, the second priority is government privatized lodging located on or near the installation whose mission is to serve official travelers. These facilities are available in DTS on the "GOVT PRIVATIZED" tab. At Army installations that are participating in the integrated lodging program pilot, these are the Privatized Army Lodging (PAL) facilities that are operated by the InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG). If "GOVT PRIVATIZED" lodging is available at an integrated lodging program pilot location, service members and civilian employees must use it or their reimbursement will be limited to the amount that the government would have paid.

    Note: Only government privatized lodging that has been inspected and certified to meet specific DoD adequacy standards will be available on the "GOVT PRIVATIZED" tab. In some cases, there may be other PAL hotels on an installation that are historic or have not yet completed a full renovation. These facilities meet all federal emergency management agency (FEMA) standards, but may not have the full complement of services to warrant display on the "GOVT PRIVATIZED" tab. These hotels may be booked in OTS as outlined in paragraph 6 below.
  5. If neither "GOVT DOD" lodging nor "GOVT PRIVATIZED" lodging is available for the TDY travel dates, travelers to designated integrated lodging program pilot sites will be directed to the "COMMERCIAL DOD PREFERRED" tab. Facilities under this tab are part of the DoD integrated lodging pilot program (ILPP) and are required to meet strict DoD standards for quality, safety and security, and offer rooms at rates below per diem. If "COMMERCIAL DOD PREFERRED" lodging is available, all travelers must use it or their lodging re imbursement will be limited to the amount that the government would have paid if used. Travelers may decline COMMERCIAL DOD PREFERRED hotels, accept the reimbursement limitation and book hotels as per step 6 (including PAL hotels). If the rates of those hotels are at or below the reimbursement limitation, travelers will be reimbursed in full.
  6. If DoD preferred commercial lodging is not available, travelers will be directed to the fourth priority lodging tab, "COMMERCIAL FIRE SAFETY ACT COMPLIANT." This tab lists hotels, including other PAL hotels on the installation and commercial hotels in the area that meet the FEMA standards. Lodging options on this tab can be sorted by TDY location, city location, hotel name, airport location, and zip code. In order to find the additional PAL hotels on this tab, choose "Sort by hotel name" in the "Modify search" section on the left side of the screen and type the word "PAL."
  7. The final category of lodging is "COMMERCIAL OTHER PUBLISHED RATES." Hotels on this tab should only be booked when no other lodging is available. These properties are not monitored and are not certified by FEMA.

Travelers experiencing difficulty booking PAL hotels in DTS still have the ability to book online at or by calling 1-877-711-TEAM (8326). When the pre­ audit flag stating that no lodging was booked appears, select reason code "Ll0 - exempt IAW JTR" and note in the remarks section that the PAL hotel was booked. Commercial Travel Offices (CTOS) may also assist with booking PAL hotels, however, a handling fee will be assessed on the order.

Travelers should note that a fee is charged to the hotel for every cancellation or change made in DTS. Rooms should not be booked until the travel is certain.

This instruction has been reviewed by the Per Diem, Travel and Transportation Allowance Committee staff in accordance with DODI5154.31, dated 8 October 2015, as PDTATAC case RR16002.