Home Leave Travel Assistance (HTLA) is for support personnel deployed outside of Canada. The financial help is used for reuniting with their next of kin during allotted leave time.
Home Leave Travel Assistance (HLTA)
Your eligibility for HLTA is determined during your pre-deployment briefings. Program details are also made available at that time.
PSP is responsible for booking the HLTA travel for those who are eligible for the assistance. PSP is also able to assist booking of 3rd location HLTA, if it is required.
You can find more details on the HLTA policy in Chapter 10 of the Compensation Benefits Instructions.
1. When can I take my HLTA?
2. What is my allowance?
3. I'm taking reverse HLTA. What is my next of kin's allowance rate?
4. My ship will change ports during my HLTA. Can I choose which allowance rate I want to use?
5. If I don't take my HLTA, can I use the allowance when I get home?
6. If my 3rd location allowance is $2000 and my plane ticket only costs $800, can I use the remainder on my spouse and kids?
7. My parents are my immediate next of kin but can I take my brother instead?
8. My immediate next of kin are in Germany, can I visit them on my HLTA?
9. Do I book travel myself in HRG?
10. If I book myself (3rd location) do I get an advance or will I be reimbursed?
11. Can I travel around Europe for my HLTA?
12. What if I don't fly in/out the same city, can I be refunded one way?
13. Can I transit through the U.S.?
14. I found a flight but the layover is over 5hrs. Is this allowed?
15. The airline made me pay for luggage. Can I claim that?
16. Can I upgrade my seats?
17. What if I lose my boarding passes and receipts?
1. WHEN CAN I TAKE MY HLTA?
With Chain of Command approval, the HLTA can be taken at any time that is operationally suitable. It can’t be taken within the first or last 30 days of your deployment.
2. WHAT IS MY ALLOWANCE?
If your travel location is home, there is no specific allowance. It is the cost to get you home. PSP MUST book the most direct and economical flight.
The 3rd location allowance rate is based on the point or port of departure. Every year, the Director of Compensation and Benefits Administration determines the allowance rates.
The 3rd location allowance is only for the deployed person. The next of kin does not receive any HLTA. But, if any funds remain from the deployed person’s HLTA, these can be applied to the next of kin’s travel afterwards.
3. I’M TAKING REVERSE HLTA, WHAT IS MY NEXT OF KIN’S ALLOWANCE RATE?
There is no allowance rate for Reverse HLTA. Instead it follows the same rules as travel to home location. PSP MUST book the travel. They will request a quote for the airfare to go home. The quote amount will establish the reverse HLTA allowance rate for your next of kin.
4. MY SHIP WILL CHANGE PORTS DURING MY HLTA, CAN I CHOOSE WHICH ALLOWANCE RATE I WANT TO USE?
The point or port of departure establishes the 3rd location HLTA rate.
5. IF I DON’T TAKE MY HLTA, CAN I USE THE ALLOWANCE WHEN I GET HOME?
The HLTA is not paid out if not taken while deployed.
If HLTA isn’t taken during the deployment, the days can be converted to leave in lieu. This requires Chain of Command approval. The unused HLTA days are at the rate of 1day of leave in theatre = 0.7 days of leave at home.
6. IF MY 3RD LOCATION ALLOWANCE IS $2,000 AND MY PLANE TICKET ONLY COSTS $800, CAN I USE THE REMAINDER ON MY SPOUSE AND KIDS?
Your HLTA allowance applies for your own travel first. If any funds are leftover, they can be applied to your immediate next of kin. HLTA can only apply to one immediate next of kin. In this situation, it would apply to your spouse.
You must follow procedures for HLTA for your own travel. Otherwise, you will forgo the HLTA allowance for yourself. In this case, it also can’t be applied to your immediate next of kin.
7. MY PARENTS ARE MY IMMEDIATE NEXT OF KIN BUT CAN I TAKE MY BROTHER INSTEAD?
Your immediate next of kin is in order of priority, not preference. The list order is:
If you don’t want to travel with your immediate next of kin, you are free to bring your brother. Unfortunately, his travel is not reimbursable under HLTA.
- Spouse/common-law partner;
- Sibling; and
8. MY IMMEDIATE NEXT OF KIN ARE IN GERMANY, CAN I VISIT THEM ON MY HLTA?
Home location HLTA is either:
If your immediate next of kin lives in Germany then this is the home location HLTA. In this case, the costs of travel to Germany are fully reimbursable. PSP MUST book the air travel.
- where you normally live;
- your last place of duty; or
- where your immediate next of kin normally resides.
9. DO I BOOK TRAVEL MYSELF IN HRG ?
No. HLTA is not booked in HRG.
PSP MUST book all home location HLTA. This includes members traveling to their next of kin who live outside of Canada.
For those traveling to a 3rd location, it can be self-booked or arranged by PSP. There are benefits to having PSP book your ticket. If there is a change to your HLTA because of operational reasons, the travel will be rebooked by PSP. If you opt to self-book the travel, it is up to you to make any changes required to your travel. For this reason, travel insurance is highly recommended (but not reimbursable).
10. IF I BOOK MYSELF (3rd LOCATION) DO I GET AN ADVANCE OR WILL I BE REIMBURSED?
Advance allowances are not given for HLTA. Travel can be arranged through PSP up to the maximum allowance rate. Amounts above the allowance rate will be charged to a credit card provided by the member.
If you book yourself, the HLTA costs are reimbursed upon returning. You’ll need to fill out an HLTA claim and provide all your receipts and boarding passes.
11. CAN I TRAVEL AROUND EUROPE FOR MY HLTA?
HLTA is for reuniting deployed members with their next of kin at one location. The location can be at home or at an approved destination. Because of this, all travel is to/from that same location. You do have permission to go in and out from different airports within the same city.
12. WHAT IF I DON’T FLY IN/OUT THE SAME CITY, CAN I BE REFUNDED ONE WAY?
No. The HLTA policy states that you must fly in and out of the same city. If you do not follow the HLTA policy, you are forgoing the entitlement and nothing is claimable.
13. CAN I TRANSIT THROUGH THE U.S.?
PSP always avoids booking travel through the USA. This directive comes from Canadian Joint Operations Command (CJOC). There are often issues with cancelled/overbooked flights, lost baggage and extended layovers.
There are some routings where transit through the USA is unavoidable and may be proposed as an option of travel. If you would prefer to transit through the USA, it is permitted.
14. I FOUND A FLIGHT BUT THE LAYOVER IS OVER 5HRS, IS THIS ALLOWED?
The policy requires that all travel be the most direct, economical with no overnights. The 5 hour layover limit is a guideline for PSP to follow rather than a policy rule. If required, a long layover is permitted as long as the route is the most direct and economical. Overnight stays are not allowed.
15. THE AIRLINE MADE ME PAY FOR LUGGAGE, CAN I CLAIM THAT?
No. Luggage is not reimbursable under HLTA. When booking a budget airline please check with their baggage policy. There is often a budget economy fare versus a regular economy fare that may include 1 piece of checked baggage.
Many major Canadian airlines grant free checked baggage for serving and veteran CAF members. The same is often observed by U.S run airlines.
16. CAN I UPGRADE MY SEATS?
For reimbursement, the receipt for airfare must be an economy fare.
If you book your own travel and wish to upgrade, we recommend that you first book Economy and upgrade either:
If PSP books the airfare, you can upgrade your seats to premium economy or business class at your own expense. For 3rd location, the cost of the economy airfare will be reimbursable up to the maximum allowance. You will need to supply a credit card for the upgrade charge.
- through the airline;
- at the airport the day of travel; or
- using the airlines business class bidding system.
17. WHAT IF I LOSE MY BOARDING PASSES AND RECEIPTS?
If you lose your boarding pass or receipts, you will not be able to claim the amounts. A simple way to avoid this is to take a photo of your receipts and boarding passes.
According to the Director of Benefits and Compensation Administration (DCBA) we are not able to accept credit card statements instead of receipts.
Boarding passes for travel booked by PSP can be verified.
For all question on HLTA, please address them to PSPHLTA.ARDC@forces.gc.ca