About this FAQ

Spacea.net's Pages and FAQ are unofficial web pages developed as a volunteer service to the members of the uniformed services/military community. The information provided has been compiled since 2001 from online forums, individual contributions, websites and personal knowledge and is based on the contributors' knowledge and experience.  Every effort is made to keep this info up to date. It is your responsibility to verify everything with current regulations and policy before you travel.

Due to the enormous amounts of info collected since 2006 the FAQ is now contained in multiple parts in the following sections:

  • Overview, Regulations, Terminology/Acronyms and Resources
  • Eligibility, Registration (Signup) Procedures and Dependent Travel
  • Flight Schedules, Flight Preparation and Miscellaneous

Please email additions/corrections/suggestions etc...to spacea@spacea.net as your info will help a fellow traveler.

Enjoy your journey!

 Here's a little history of the initial pioneers of "Space-A on the Internet."

  • Mid 1990s: Pepperd.com message board was born. Created by Dirk Pepperd (then Active Duty Army and now retired).
  • Mid 1990s: A Space-A FAQ maintained by Doug Oard was hosted on some Veteran’s Newsgroups on the blossoming World Wide Web.
  • Late 1990s: Roy Buckman (Ret USA) started a discussion forum similar to Pepperd.com at spacea.info. In addition, Roy created the initial online signup service.
  • Late 1990s-2001: Doug Ourd’s FAQ became outdated as new Space-A policies appeared so John D. created the “Space-A FAQ” (as we know it today). Roy Buckman hosted the Space-A FAQ on his spacea.info web site.
  • Spring 2003: Vandals, spammers and hackers prompted Dirk to move to a “members only” discussion board (the format Dirk just transitioned from).
  • May 2005: Roy Buckman passes away suddenly leaving the future of his web site in limbo.
  • Summer 2005: Military Living vowed to continue Roy Buckman’s website (as a tribute to Roy). However, little effort went into continuing Roy Buckman’s legacy and Roy's forum and signup service ceased to exist. Roy's web site only continued as a commercial front for Military Living’s business to market their Space-A publications.
  • Summer 2005: Since Roy Buckman’s signup service was no longer being kept updated by Military Living, Rob G. stepped up to fill the void and created takeahop.com. Rob G made several improvements over the initial concept such as allowing one to signup for up to 5 locations at once. Rob also added a fax capability for locations that did not accept email signups and mobile apps in 2012.
  • Fall 2005: Since spacea.info was now being used to market commercial publications, John D. decided to host the Space-A FAQ on it’s own new web site and www.spacea.net was born. Since that time, www.spacea.net has grown to more than a FAQ and now includes helpful links and location pages with detailed info helpful to any Space-A traveler.
  • June 2010: After 7 years, Dirk moves the Pepperd.com discussion forum to the current Pepperd.com Forum.

My dates may be a little off but you should get the jist of it and I hope it clears things up a little!

  • FIRST!!!! - determine your eligibility for Space-A travel.  If you are not elegible for Space-A then there is no point in reading further.  If you are eligible then continue and you need to.......
  • SIGN-UP: Once you are authorised to travel (retiree, started your AD leave or have your signed dependent travel letter) you register ("signup") at the locations you plan to initiate travel from (both coming and going). Some terminals have a web form you can fill out to register (see the Space-A Location Listings). You can also sign-up (register) in person, by email or fax. Note, you are not "signing-up" for a particular flight and you do not make flight "reservations!" When you sign-up you go on "the list" (at that location only) and you compete for flights based on your priority on "the list" within your category. When the PSA receives your "sign-up request" they assign you a date/time based on the Julian date calendar and Zulu time your sign-up was received. Your sign-up time determines your position/priority within each Space-A Category.
  • SHOW UP: Once signed-up, no one is going to contact you so you'll have to decide where you want to depart from (e.g. Dover, McGuire etc….) based on predicted departures. It helps to phone the terminal you think you want to depart from and/or monitor their recording (flight departures) to get a feel for possible destinations. As soon as you physically arrive at a location check in with the folks at the Pax desk to see if you are listed on the Space-A register with the correct date/time/seats (some locations print a list daily for review). If something is not correct with your registration then fix it! Declare yourself "Present" for the next 24 hours and let the Pax rep know that you want to be included in the Roll Call for any flights heading to/towards your intended destination.
  • GIDDY-UP: Now that you're at the terminal the adventure begins. You're next step is be physically present at the terminal, check-in with the Pax Reps to mark yourself "present" and be travel-ready (luggage, dependents and proper paperwork in-hand and car parked) for the "show-time" and subsequent "Roll Call" of the particular flight you'd like to be manifested on. I recommend you arrrive at least an hour prio to a Roll Call to allow time to get marked "Present" and be "Travel Ready."  If you make the cut at the flight Roll Call you'll be manifested and on your way! Prospective passengers will be selected (manifested) during the "Roll Call" based on priority of category and signup date/time starting with Category-I (CAT-I) through CAT-VI.

Space-A policy and rules are constantly being evaluated and have evolved over the years. I try very hard to keep abreast of changes and constantly update the SpaceA.net FAQ and associated information.  Here's a list of changes that have occurred over the years:

  • Fees no longer required for departures from "military locations on military aircraft" (used to be $10 per person from more active locations such as Dover, McGuire, Ramstein)
  • No longer have to wear uniform while flying Space-A
  • Signup now can be done remotely
  • Advance schedules no longer available on public web sites
  • Aircraft types no longer available on public web sites
  • JOSAC/OSA schedules no longer available to public (restricted to .mil with account)
  • Roll Call "Schedule" now available on the internet
  • Roll Call Reports now available on internet
  • Command Sponsored Dependents allowed to Space-A unaccompanied
  • Non-Command Sponsored Dependents allowed to Space-A unaccompanied
  • Dependents with Deployed Sponsors allowed to Space-A unaccompanied (2007)
  • Dependents can accompany their sponsor within CONUS
  • Must be marked "Present" to take part in a Space-A Roll Call
  • Signup duration changed from 45 days to 60 days (AMC and some other locations)
  • Virtual Roll Call available for some missions at select locations
  • Command Sponsored Dependent and Non-Command Sponsored Dependents letters now valid for 90 days (versus 60)
  • Patriot Express monthly departure projections now posted on public web sites (2015)
  • Dependents with sponsors deployed 30 days or more (2015)
  • DoD Reg revised from 1994 version:  Signup duration listed as 60 days (2016)

These are just the ones that I can remember off the top of my head.