Many retailers show appreciation for active and retired military members and their families by offering them special discounts.
“From movie theaters and car rental agencies to bus lines and theme parks, businesses across the country have created offers to help lighten financial burdens and offer thanks to families with military status,” says Sara Skirboll, shopping expert at RetailMeNot. In fact, numerous restaurants and stores typically offer a 10% discount to those who present a current military ID.
We’ve rounded up some standout deals, along with a few resources to help you find more. Active and retired members of the military, including reservists and members of the National Guard and Coast Guard, can take advantage of most deals unless otherwise noted. Offers change frequently, so be sure to confirm directly with the appropriate retailer or organization.
Disney World and Disneyland
Disney World offers four-day park hopper tickets, a $305 value, for only $177 through their Disney Military Promotional Tickets. Disneyland offers three-day park hopper tickets for $132. No more than 12 tickets can be purchased. This great deal runs until December 20, 2015.
The National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands offer a free annual pass valid at more than 2,000 sites across the country to military members and their dependents. Simply present your current military ID at a participating federal recreation site to get a pass. It covers admission for the pass owner and passengers at locations that charge per vehicle, and admission for the pass owner plus three additional adults at locations that charge per person. Although the program does not include veterans, many may qualify for a senior pass.
Great Wolf Lodge
The Howling Heroes program at Great Wolf Lodge offers deals for more than just military members. Law enforcement, fire and EMS workers can also take advantage of a 20% discount on room rates. The program includes free water park passes for the duration of the stay at all 12 locations across the country.
Best Western hotels offer military personnel discounted rates for both business and leisure. Book online or by calling 1-800-WESTERN. Be sure to have your ID when checking in.
Alamo Rent A Car
With more than 550 participating locations around the world, Alamo Rent A Car offers low rates for military members, family members and dependents. Simply use the Contract ID “GOVRNR” when reserving to get the government leisure rate.
Active duty military, reserve members, veterans within one year of discharge and retirees can get up to 13% off the suggested retail price on GM cars and trucks. Visit the website and create an account to learn about all the incentives and which vehicles are part of the program.
Hard Rock Café
Bring a valid military ID to Hard Rock Cafés around the country on military appreciation nights to get 15% off food, non-alcoholic beverages and items in the store. RetailMeNot experts say military appreciation nights are held on different dates depending on location, so check with the Hard Rock Café first.
Costco offers military personnel more than $50 in savings when they join. Members of the U.S. armed forces, veterans and their families can take advantage of the deal. Visit the website to verify your military status and redeem the special offer.
Active military, retirees, veterans, reservists, members of the National Guard and registered dependents can get 30% off their purchase of motorcycle and motocross lifestyle apparel and gear. Just create an account on the website to see the military pricing.
The Apple Store has a special website with discounted items for military and government personnel. To take advantage of the Military/Government Purchase Program, use the URL provided by an employer, call 1-877-EPP-MEMBER or visit any Apple Retail Store to find specifics on pricing.
Additional Online Resources
Founded in 2004, the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America is now the leading post-9/11 veteran empowerment organization. It provides up to $200 in vouchers to certain retail stores for members.
Learn about hundreds of military discounts by becoming a member of Military.com. Sign-up is free and entitles you to more than 20 categories of discounts.
The Veteran’s Ticket Foundation (known as Vet Tix) offers raffles for tickets to sporting events, concerts, family activities and performing arts shows in all 50 states and Washington, DC. Current military members, honorably discharged veterans from all branches and families of those killed in action are eligible.