For those of you on overseas assignments, did you know you can take a break and claim back some of the costs?

Respite Provision helps to contribute towards the costs of a short break away from the overseas location for a serving person and their family who receive permanent rates of Local Overseas Allowance (LOA).

Each overseas location is given a set number of respite days – these depend on conditions and how isolated a location is. There’s a maximum claimable rate per day, per person, which also varies by location. You can choose to take respite days as one block or individual days up to the maximum entitlement.

What can I claim for?

Lesley Slater

You can claim for accommodation and travel costs to and from the location but not food and drink. A package holiday (including all inclusive deals) can be claimed up to the maximum rate.

There are exemptions, so if you are claiming School Children’s Visits (SCVs) for a child, you won’t be able to claim Respite Provision for that child. You can’t use Respite with other travel allowances such as Get You Home (Overseas) either.

Lesley Slater recently used the allowance and says: “We took a long weekend break in Epernay in France to explore some of the famous champagne houses in the area. It was wonderful to get a break away from the norm and see something new. The trip was adults-only – we couldn’t take the children as they are at boarding school, so they aren’t eligible. It was all fairly straightforward to arrange, thankfully.”

How do I claim?

You can claim back your costs on JPA within 14 days of travel, but you may be able to get an advance of costs of up to 80 per cent of the entitlement up to 90 days before. For more details, read JSP 752 Chapter 9 section 5 or speak to your unit HR admin.

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