As a salute to our armed forces, there are a variety of travel discounts available just for the military.
Park it: The National Parks Service turned 100 on August 25, 2016, and is a service that takes care of America’s national parks through recreation, conservation, and historic preservation programs. The National Parks Service offers free admission at sites throughout the country that charge entrance, or standard amenity fees for one full year from the month it was obtained. Those who qualify for the free admission include current US military members and their dependents in the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, and Coast Guard, as well as most members of the US Reserves and National Guard. You must present proper military identification at the parks.
In 2016, each of the 409 national parks celebrate 16 days of waived entrance fees. Typically, Veterans Day weekend is one of those free weekends.
Park discounts: Many aquariums and amusement parks have discounts for the military and their families. For example, Hersheypark, the Great Wolf Lodge, and the Bronx Zoo and New York Aquarium are just some of the venues that offer both year-round discounts to family members of the military while providing a free general admission ticket to the soldier.
Fly through the air: Ask the airlines if they offer a military discount. Active military personnel and their families can get discounts on a variety of airlines including Southwest. They are available by contacting the airlines directly, or booking through a travel agent. JetBlue also serves the U.S. Active Duty Military, Retired Military, Veterans, National Guard and Reserve, and their families who are enrolled in a program that they have called Veterans Advantage. It provides a 5% discount on everyday JetBlue travel to 85+ destinations across the Caribbean, South America and Latin America.
There are also special vacation programs across the country that help the military families to heal, while traveling and creating fun family memories at the same time. Located in Shepherdsville, Kentucky, the Active Heroes Retreat Center is the first retreat in America designed by military families. This particular venue provides a camp experience for free. According to their website, visitors can “schedule a day to visit the grounds during hours of staffing, schedule a cabin vacation or sign up for selected camping dates with cookouts.”
Many hotels, resorts and car rental discounts also offer discounted rates for all military personnel. For example, Alamo has a discount rate for off-duty travelers and retired military personnel. You just have to ask.
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