What to Bring
Before you board a plane and make your way to Bahrain, there are a number of details that you need to know before you arrive.
Electronics: Electricity Voltage in Bahrain is 220 Volts! If you bring electronics, make sure if they are 120V/220V. Be advised that your flat or villa may come with the electronics you need (TV/DVD/Surround System/ Appliances). Be sure you don’t plug in expensive electronics without first checking the voltage and using the appropriate transformer if necessary.
Transformers Vs. Adapters: Transformers change the voltage; adapters only adapt the plug to fit. Converters are available for sale at various locations and/or can be obtained when negotiating a housing lease.
Passports: (Official Passport) No-Fee Passport(s) are mandatory. If you have not received your passport you can still travel and enter Bahrain with your official orders and Military ID Card. Notify the NSA Command Sponsor Team if you have any further questions or concerns about passports.
Unaccompanied Baggage (UB): The Navy authorizes no more than 600 lbs. for the member and 200 lbs. per family member; this is for items you need upon arrival like: clothing, bedding, basic pots and pans, small electronics, baby furniture like crib, pack and play, etc. Recommend shipment be picked up 30 days prior to main shipment since transit times are approximately 45 days.
Household Goods (HHG): You will want to be comfortable in your home in Bahrain just as you would want to be comfortable in your home anywhere else. You may want to bring your mattress and/or a mattress pad as Bahrain's beds can be hard. If you like water sports, bring your items but keep in mind there is NO surfing in Bahrain. If your shipment is late arriving and you have exhausted Temporary Living Allowance, Bahrain housing may be able to assign you to a month-to-month, fully-furnished apartment until your shipment arrives.
Long-term storage: Choosing what to keep in long-term storage is a highly personal choice. We recommend you consider what you absolutely must have and what you feel like you can live without while you’re OCONUS. Keep in mind, large furniture & beds might not fit in your new home so be cognizant of that. Sentimental items have the potential to break so consider your options thoroughly (including lending to a trusted family member or friend while you’re away).
- All narcotics and recreational drugs: (including but not limited to) cocaine, heroin, cannabis and opiates and their derivates
- Fireworks, weapons, explosives and ammunition
- Knives and deadly weapons
- Military uniform swords/cutlass/saber
- Gambling games, tools and machineries
- Plant and plant products
- Live swine, pork meat and related products
- Animals without a valid permit
- Indian Paan and Derivatives
- Advertisement material for all types of Cigarettes
- Children’s Toy Guns capable of firing projectiles
- Radio/ Remote controlled Model Aircraft (including drones)
- Radar jammers/other unauthorized communication devices
- Goods of Israeli origin or bearing Israeli trademarks or logos
- Printed publications, photographs, pictures, books, magazines sculptures and mannequins which contradict Islamic teachings, decency, or immorality
- Raw Ivory, Ivory articles and Rhinoceros Horn
- Counterfeit money and goods
- Asbestos or Items containing Asbestos
- Pornographic material – print, video, audio, hard disk etc.
- Cultured Pearls
- Seditious or treasonable material
- Any other items, whose importation is prohibited under Kingdom of Bahrain Customs laws, or any other laws of the country
***Further information can be found at Bahrain Customs***
Sponsor Team (if you have)
You will be assigned temporary lodging for up to 45 days, once you arrive and receive Temporary Lodging Allowance, which you must apply for every 10 days until housed. Detailed brief and/or complete explanation will be given when you attend the housing brief upon arrival. All personnel will be housed on the local economy, except for E-4 and below who will reside in the barracks on board NSA Bahrain. The Housing Office staff will assist you in finding a place to live and with execution of a lease. Rent is paid in Bahraini Dinars and not in U.S. dollars.
Upon arrival, you must go immediately to the Navy Gateway Inns & Suites (NGIS) office to obtain Certificate of None-Availability (CNA) to be able to reside at commercial hotels. You or your sponsor can obtain your CNA in advance. If you have advised your sponsor in advance that you are bringing a pet, you will stay at one of three hotels that allow pets. There is no extra cost for pets. Temporary lodging will be in a local hotel for most personnel for up to 45 days with valid CNA from NGIS. NGIS cannot back-date CNA, so you must report to NGIS to obtain it and get paid for TLA. Ensure your sponsor knows your arrival date and whether you will be bringing a pet. Your sponsor will make your TLA reservation and/or arrangements through NGIS office. You must validate and pay for TLA every 10 days while in a temporary lodging status, until you are adequately housed.
Since NSA Bahrain Temporary Quarters are relegated toward junior service members, newly arrived individuals will be required to arrange alternate lodging, which will be covered by what is known as Temporary Lodging Allowance (TLA). A fixed amount of money is designated solely for lodging expenses and is not to be confused with per diem.
While newly arrived personnel have various allowances and entitlements sorted, Housing personnel recommend that individuals required to stay in alternate housing have at least $1,500 to cover their expenses for the first 10 days after arrival. This amount of money should cover all expenses and is reimbursable through the submission of receipts and bills to the Housing Office and ultimately to the Personnel Support Detachment.
To learn more about the PCS process, visit: Housing Information
The “NSA Bahrain Welcome Aboard Guide” is also very helpful to review (in Helpful Links on this page).