Top 5 Ways Veterans Can Save With Military Benefits

Written By Jeff Hindenach
Last updated January 29, 2021

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June 8, 2015

Simple. Thrifty. Living.

The United States is grateful for the contributions of its military veterans, and a wide assortment of public and private benefits exist to express this gratitude. If you’re a veteran, you may find discounted access to nearly anything you need with a bit of research. Learn some of the best sources of these special military discounts.

Active duty military members, veterans and families are eligible to participate in Veteran’s Advantage plans. For a membership fee of less than $5 a month, participation in this plan provides discounts on more than 100,000 national brand products and services. Benefits include a secure VetRewards military ID card, special travel and accident insurance coverage, as well as a 60-page benefits directory and responsive customer service. Most nationwide brands participate in this program, so enrolling is a definite winning proposition.

Founded in 1922 by 25 military officers banding together to insure each other’s vehicles, USAA has grown over the years to become a major financial services resource for past and present members of the military. Qualifying spouses and children are also able to receive USAA benefits. These include low-rate mortgages and auto loans, no-fee ATM cards, and discounted policies for every category of insurance. General banking services, retirement planning and financial counseling are also included in USAA’s full-service membership package.

This benefit is one of the most well-known and valuable of all veterans benefits. VA home loans don’t require a down payment, and they offer some of the lowest interest rates available nationwide. Furthermore, they honor the financial reality of veterans’ lives by providing streamlined access to refinancing options that don’t require verification of income or assets, and their overall approach to personal credit is far more generous than a traditional bank. Veterans will appreciate both the substantial discounts offered by this organization and its friendly customer service.

Another discount membership program for past and current members of the military, Military Discounts Central focuses primarily on travel and leisure products. Airfare, hotels and car rentals are all discounted for members of this program, while special all-inclusive resort packages are available as well. Some of America’s most popular destinations are listed on the website’s home page, including special Disney and Las Vegas packages. Fine dining at your destination is also part of this website’s offerings.

Approaching the Veteran’s Administration for health benefits requires more patience, as this is not a quick-and-easy consumer-facing organization. Nevertheless, in a health care environment of steadily increasing costs, where every form of insurance entails complex and shifting eligibility requirements, it may be worth your while to invest in VA health benefits. A good first step is sitting down and reading through their website, starting with the home page. A huge amount of information is provided on the vast array of health resources currently available to veterans.

While the five organizations listed above serve as centralized depots for various services and discounts, it is important to remember that many financial benefits don’t require any gatekeeper. Countless nationwide brands simply offer veteran discounts on request, so it never hurts to inquire. Whether you’re in the market for a cup of coffee, tickets to a basketball game or a new car, you will frequently encounter money-saving gratitude for your service to your country.

About the Author

Jeff Hindenach

Jeff Hindenach is the co-founder of Simple. Thrifty. Living. He graduated from Bowling Green State University with a Bachelor's Degree in Journalism. He has a long history of financial journalism, with a background writing for newspapers such as the San Jose Mercury News and San Francisco Examiner, as well as writing on personal finance for The Huffington Post, New York Times, Business Insider, CNBC, Newsday and The Street. He believes in giving readers the tools they need to get out of debt.

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