||REFERRAL AND RELOCATION ASSISTANCE
Developing a sense of community here starts before you arrive at Kalkar Air Station. We recognize the efforts behind this transition and want to make sure you are satisfied with the details of your move. To obtain Referral and Relocation Assistance, we encourage you to reach out for personalized services provided by the Military Housing Office (MHO) staff.
Kalkar is a small town, located in northwestern Germany in the state of Nordrhein--Westfalen (North Rhine--Westfalia). It is near the German-Netherlands border on the southern side of the Rhine River. This town of approximately 14,000 celebrated its 770th anniversary in 2000. Kalkar lies 7 miles (12 kilometers) southeast of Kleve (pronounced "CLAY-ve"), population 64,000; 7 miles northeast of Goch (pronounced "gawkh" but gurgle the "kh"), population 30,000; 22 miles (36 kilometers) southeast of Nijmegen (pronounced "NYE-meggen"), the Netherlands; and 60 road miles (100 kilometers) northwest of Düsseldorf, the nearest major German city and the one with the most accessible major international airport. Von-Seydlitz Kaserne, is the German base where our support unit, the Combined Air Operations Centre and the Joint Air Power Competence Centre are located, which is about a mile from the town center.
Planning Your Move
Moving to an overseas location requires additional planning to make sure you and your family are prepared for the transition. There are many things you can do before you arrive to ensure the process to get settled in your new home and community is seamless.
Kalkar does not have temporary lodging facilities. You should plan on staying in a hotel or furnished apartment upon your arrival. You will be paid Temporary Lodging Allowance (TLA) when you are overseas and not assigned government quarters for up to 60 days. Ask your sponsor what options will be available for your arrival time.
Due to limited options in the Kalkar area, it is essential that you tell your sponsor about special needs prior to your arrival. For example, if you have no transportation, the best option will probably be an apartment or hotel room within Kalkar. There is an assortment of shops and restaurants within Kalkar which are within walking distance of any apartment or hotel. The military Kaserne (German base) and NSU are also accessible by bicycle from these locations (only 3 km from the main square in Kalkar).
USAREUR Pamphlet 190-34/USAFE Pamphlet 125-11, "Drivers Handbook and Examination Manual for Germany," covers vehicle registration and driver training matters in detail. Your sponsor can get one to send you, if you want to study it before you arrive at Kalkar, or you can download a copy of it from the Army website. You will get both your driver's license testing and vehicle inspection at Geilenkirchen. If you are stationed in the CONUS, visit the USAFE Driver's License Exam website to take your driver's license test online. You have to request a proctor for the test. Make sure to print out a copy when passing the test. If you are stationed overseas, keep your license that was issued to you or make a copy of it. This will prevent you from having to re-take the test.
The exam is made up of 75 multiple-choice questions on European rules and driving procedures, plus 25 traffic signs that must be identified. The test is difficult, and more than 30 percent of all first-time testers fail. Practice exams and information about the test can be found on the Air Force Portal. Normally, before you get your USAREUR Driver's License, you must watch a video in order to take the exam. Because we are so far from Geilenkirchen, our Vehicle NCOs can show you the video and present you with a letter certifying that you have received the training. Then, all you have to do is take the test. You must also have a valid stateside driver's license to get a USAREUR POV license. There is a $10 fee for the USAREUR license that you will have to pay by credit card.
US Forces personnel stationed in Germany may not operate a POV in Germany unless they hold a valid USAREUR POV operator's license. NOTE: non-active duty spouses may legally operate a rental car using just their International Driver's License but active duty military personnel must have the USAREUR license before they can legally drive that car. WARNING: Local Rental Car companies will allow you to rent vehicles without the USAREUR license.
Individuals without a valid stateside driver's license cannot get an USAREUR license or drive in Germany. Teenagers who have a valid stateside driver's license can take the USAREUR course and tests when they are 17, but must be 18 before they can drive without a licensed adult in the car. They also can only drive in Germany.
There are two options for training an unlicensed driver. They can go to a German driving school, which is very expensive--as much as $1,700--and the student must speak German. The other option is to get licensed in the US and then take the USAREUR course and tests. The military doesn't pay for or provide driver training for learners.
The electrical current in Kalkar is 220-240 volts and 50 cycles as opposed to 110 volts and 60 cycles in the United States. Transformers for use with small electrical appliances are available through the Family Support Representative at Kalkar and 220 volt appliances may also be purchased in the local Army and Air Force Exchange Service (AAFES) stores. Departing service members often sell their used 220 volt appliances for a reasonable price.
More information on products for each location can be found on the AAFES website.
Airman and Family Readiness Center (AFRC)
The local AFRC is another great resource to obtain pertinent information about the area.
Contact Information: OL-B 470th ABS
PSC 21 Box 400
APO AE 09261
Phone: 0049-2824-16765 (DSN 312-454-8765)