A career in the military gives you a great start in lifeor even a lifelong career, and it offers you some unique opportunities to save money. Why not? You’ve earned a littleextra respect by serving your country! See if you’re making the most of your opportunities to save by jogging through this summary of the top ways military families can get more for less.
Always Check Education Benefits
You, your spouse, and your kids might qualify for grants, scholarships, and extra benefits that make getting a great education a whole lot cheaper. GI Bill benefits are transferrable and worth their weight in gold – but there’s more. There are many opportunities out there, but a lot of people never take advantage of them because they never ask. Do your homework BEFORE anyone in your family starts studying.
Comparison-Shop the Commissary
Your commissary offers low prices andit’stax-free, right? Right! But be alert to the possibility that you could get certain items even cheaper if you shop around. A Walmart price could beat your commissary price hands-down. Don’t just assume the commissary will be cheaper. Check the prices of common grocery and household items online before committing to the commissary.
Shop on Base When Travelling
Just because it’s not your base’s commissary doesn’t mean you can’t shop there. All you need is your military ID. Sure, you want to get away from it all, but the more you save, the more you’ll have left to spend on fun activities and treats.
Yes, You CanCoupon at the Commissary
Let’s not forget the benefits of using coupons. It’s like getting free money, and if you organize yourself well, you can make significant savings. And yes, your commissary does honor coupons too, so stack them on top of the already-low prices for an even better deal.
Don’t Forget Your Military Discounts
The commissary isn’t the only place to get deals when you’re in the military. Many stores, holiday resorts, and automakers offer deals to military men and women. Think of almost anything that money can buy, and chances are, you’ll find military discounts in that category.
Stationed Overseas? Shop Online
Local prices aren’t always cheaper – and in some countries, they can be a lot higher than the ones you’re accustomed to paying. Don’t overlook the possibility of shopping fromyour favorite US stores online. You might find that the products are still cheaper even after shipping.
Use Your ITT Office
You want to have fun with your family, but your budget is limited. Take advantage of your ITT office, it’s there to help you get tickets, memberships, and entry fees for less and you might get great ideas for activities you’d otherwise have overlooked. Apart from helping you to find opportunities for relaxation, your ITT Office might be able to help you find free classes.
Get Low-Cost Insurance and Low-InterestRates
Apart from Servicemembers’ Group life insurance, which can also cover your spouse, you can look for military discounts from private insurers. For example, many insurance companies offer you lower costs forautomobile insurance. Compare rates to those offered by the USAA.
You should also look into low-interestrate benefits such as the ability to cap your interest rates on debts you incurred before your military service began. But remember, it doesn’t happen automatically, you need to apply to your bank for this benefit.
Always, Always Ask
No matter what your calling may be, it pays to ask about ways to save. But when you’re in the military, you have more savings opportunities than most people do. Some of them will be well-known, and others may be quite obscure.
So, if you’re thinking of spending money and don’t see a way to save as a member of the military, justask. Yes, private organizations aren’t obliged to offer better prices to military families, but a lot of them do all the same.