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Flying Space-A Without Your Sponsor: How Military Spouses Can Travel Solo

12 February 2018 by
Flying Space-A Without Your Sponsor: How Military Spouses Can Travel Solo

Did you know that as a dependent (18 years or older), you can take a military Space-A flight without your sponsor? However, there are restrictions to where and how often you can travel, depending on your category.

Here’s how you figure out what category you’re in, where you can fly, what paperwork you need, and how to sign up.

Information for All Unaccompanied Dependents

For all categories, you obtain the required paperwork from your sponsor’s commander. You must keep the paperwork with you at all times while traveling.

If you are traveling with children 10 years or older, they need a military ID card. For children younger than 10 who do not have an ID card, you need to bring a birth certificate, passport, or other government document to prove their age.

Before you travel, make sure you have enough money to cover commercial fare for your return trip, just in case you are unable to get a Space-A flight back home. If it looks like you could be stuck somewhere for a few days, do the math to figure out the cost of lodging, meals, and transportation vs. buying tickets. Getting stuck in Hawaii, for example, becomes expensive very quickly, especially if you cannot get lodging on base.

Note: Outside the Continental United States (OCONUS) includes international destinations as well as Hawaii, Alaska, and other U.S. territories. The Continental United States (CONUS) refers to the other 48 states.

Space-A Category 4

There are two main situations for unaccompanied dependents flying in Category (“Cat”) 4.

Deployed Sponsor

Your sponsor’s deployment orders are for between 30 and 364 consecutive days. If the orders are for 365 days or more, you are officially Cat 3, but you are last in line within that category; all other Cat 3s are higher priority. Other rules, restrictions, and paperwork are the same as Cat 4.

Where Can You Travel?

You can travel anywhere in the world to which there is a Space-A flight, and you can travel as frequently as you want for the duration of your sponsor’s deployment.

What Paperwork Do You Need?
About the author
Hi, I’m Stephanie! In 2015 my husband retired from the Army and we took a year off to travel. I quit my job, and we set off on an adventure to break from our routine and explore the world. Military resources and Space A travel were a major part of our strategy for making our voyage affordable. The other part – immersing ourselves in the local economy – not only saved money, but gave us unique experiences we never would have shared if we followed the tourist circuit or stayed exclusively on military bases.
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