Military Discounts: Father’s Day Gifts

While many merchants still report offering discounts during this ever-changing time of closures and alternate schedules some may not be available. Always check with the company for full details on their hours and offerings.

The third Sunday of every June is dedicated to the celebration of dads. Father’s Day is the perfect time to let the special dads in our lives know how much they’re loved and appreciated.

But what do fathers really want? Here are some ideas for the military dad in your family, along with some great deals so pampering him won’t break your bank.

1. Personal Interests

Does dad like to fish or hunt? Bass Pro Shops offers a military discount. Does he like steak? Omaha Steaks offers a 10% military discount. Would he enjoy a unique gift basket? Get a 10% discount at Man Crates. Does he enjoy amusement parks? Check out the military discounts offered by amusement parks all over the country.

2. Golf

It’s probably no coincidence that Father’s Day coincides with summertime, which is the prime season for one of dad’s favorite pastimes: golf.

Through Birdies for the Brave, the PGA TOUR offers free and discounted tickets to select PGA TOUR events for veterans, retirees, and active duty.

Most military installations have golf courses so visit your local base and pick up a gift card so he can play whenever he wants. Some bases also hold Father’s Day tournaments so go in and sign him up.

And many courses offer military discounts on golf rates, so make sure to call your local golf course to find out what they offer for the military.

3. Home Improvement

Has he been eyeing that fancy power drill? Did his favorite grill get broken in the last move? Does he need storage to help him organize all those tools in the garage? Both Home Depot and Lowes offer a year-round military discount to help you find whatever home improvement item is on his wish list.

4. Electronics and Gadgets

Computers. Cameras. Headphones. What dad couldn’t use more gadgets? The best place to start is on base at your local Exchange, but you can find military discounts at Apple as well. Don’t forget about the Exchange price match policy.

5. Cars

Thinking big this Father’s Day? Is it time for a new car? Many automakers, including Subaru and Honda, want to show their appreciation for military families by offering special pricing on their vehicles.

6. Fitness

Help dad stay in shape by using military discounts for his fitness needs. If he’s interested in a gym membership or coaching, look into the discounts offered by Gold’s Gym, 24 Hour Fitness and Beachbody.

There are also fitness options at home. Peloton, which streams live and on-demand workout classes, offers military members a free Essentials Package with the recent purchase of a bike or tread. Aaptiv, which provides access to thousands of workouts, offers a military discount on their annual subscription plan. And Barre3, which provides full-body, low-impact workouts, offers military discounts on monthly subscriptions to its online classes.

7. Family Photos

Give dad the gift of family photos. Dress the kids up and head over to JC Penney, where you can get military discounts at their portrait studio. (Don’t forget to print out the coupon before you go!)

8. Homemade Gifts

Dads can never have too many homemade gifts from the kids for Father’s Day. Whether they’re creating homemade cards, personalized signs or their own creative craft project, they’re going to need supplies. Michaels, A.C. Moore and Jo-Ann Fabrics can help you find everything you need for the perfect homemade gift from the heart.

9. Outdoor Fun

The weather is warm and summer is almost here, making Father’s Day the perfect time to head outside. Visit your local MWR on base to rent a variety of items for outdoor fun, such as kayaks, boats, bikes, fishing poles, camping gear and much more.

Happy Father’s Day!

7 Date Night Deals for Military Couples

Military couples spend a lot of time apart. So one of the things we treasure is a good old-fashioned date night. But couples often claim they don’t indulge in date nights as much as they’d like to because one night of fun isn’t worth a month of figuring out how to pay off the credit card bill.

Fortunately, date nights don’t have to be super expensive. Here are 7 date night deals for military couples:

1. Plan dinner and a movie.

You can’t go wrong with the classic dinner and a movie date night. Make sure to ask for military discounts at the restaurant you choose. Some restaurants, like the Melting Pot, offer discounts for military members, and you might discover your favorite local joint honors military families as well.

Then go see that new romantic comedy that just hit theaters. If it’s not playing on base, remember many movie theaters offer military discounts, including Cinemark, and Regal theaters.

2. Get a babysitter.

We love our kids, but date night just isn’t the same if they’re tagging along. What’s the best way to find a free babysitter? Swap sitting services with friends. One night you host all the kids to give your friends some time alone, another night it’s your turn to hit the town. The kids end up with a play date, and you don’t have to pay a dime for child care.

3. Take a class.

Are you a do-it-yourselfer? Home Depot offers free workshops on everything from installing a toilet to lawn maintenance. (And while you’re there, use your 10% military discount to pick up the necessary items to practice what you learned.)

Want to get creative? Michaels offers classes as well, and you can use their military discount to stock up on supplies.

Are you into gadgets? Apple stores offer free workshops to teach you how to use those new devices you bought through their military discount program.

4. Hang out on base.

Your local military installation provides lots of free or discounted activities that are perfect for an inexpensive date night. What exactly can you and your honey do on base? (Programs vary by location so check with your local installation to find out what’s available.)

Spend time with your spouse by staying fit. Find out the class schedule at your installation’s free fitness center. In addition to cardiovascular and weight-lifting equipment, most fitness centers on base have free group classes like spinning and zumba.

We all love the “dinner and a movie” date, so after dinner, head over to the base movie theater that offers reduced prices on movies. You can find movie schedules and other special events on your installation’s website.

Bowling is another fun date night. Bowl for two, double date with friends, or sign up for a tournament. Some locations also have arcades and snack bar facilities as well as coaches for instruction.

Can’t find a night to get away, but you’re both free on a Sunday afternoon? Have a golf date. Golf courses on base offer open course play, tournaments, driving ranges, pro shops, cart rentals, snack bars and instructors for classes and private lessons.

Want to plan a vacation or find out about local events like concerts and athletic games (for future date nights)? Head over to the Information, Ticket and Tours or ITT office. (Depending on the service, it may be called the Leisure Travel Office or Information, Ticket and Recreation.) They also provide discounted tickets to parks, museums and vacation hot spots like Disney World.

Shopping. That may not be the most exciting and romantic date night, but sometimes shopping without the kids is a treat worthy of the effort to book a babysitter. Go to the commissary (without using one of those rocket-inspired kid carts) and find some deals at the NEX/AAFES/MCX.

5. See a play.

Through the Blue Star Theatres program, military personnel and their families (and veterans) can get discounted or complimentary admission to over 170 theatres, including Arena Stage in Washington, DC, San Diego Repertory Theatre in San Diego, California and Virginia Stage Company in Norfolk, VA.

6. In-house date.

Can’t get a sitter? No good movies playing? Too tired to go out? No problem. Create the cheapest date of all: stay home. But don’t put the kids to bed and turn on the tv like you always do. Mix it up. (Although if catching up on the shows you keep hearing about on Netflix is something you never have time for and sounds like the perfect date night to you, go for it.)

Play board games. Do a puzzle. Have a photo shoot. Look through your wedding pictures. Make a scrapbook. Buy a few bottles of wine and a variety of cheeses beforehand and create your own wine-tasting. Take an online cooking class.

Date night doesn’t necessarily mean leaving your house. It means spending time together. So get creative and come up with a list of ideas for dates you can enjoy at home.

7. Relax.

Massages are a great way for busy military couples to forget about deployments and PCS moves and simply relax. Take advantage of Massage Envy’s military discount program, and book an appointment for a couples massage.

Military Discounts for Valentine’s Day

Valentine’s Day is that special time of year to remind your loved ones how much you care. But saying “I love you” in creative and romantic ways can get costly.

So this Valentine’s Day take advantage of some military discounts to help Cupid cut costs. (And remember not all military discounts are advertised, so make sure you ask wherever you go.)

Romantic Getaway

Want to go all out and plan a romantic Valentine’s getaway? Make sure to use military discounts along the way.

Whether you want to stay close to home or venture on a road trip, you can find all sorts of military discounts on lodging for a night or two away .

If you plan a trip near a military base, you can use installation lodging. If not, many hotels like Marriott, Best Western, Hilton Hotels, and Choice Hotels offer military discounts.

Flowers

Flowers may be cliché and predictable, but they are still one of the most popular gifts for Valentine’s Day. However, sending flowers to your Valentine isn’t cheap. Luckily, FTD, 1-800-Flowers, From You Flowers and Blooms Today can all help you out with military discounts on their beautiful flower arrangements and other gifts.

Jewelry

You can’t go wrong with jewelry on Valentine’s Day. Helzberg Diamonds offers a 10% military discount off their collection of jewelry.

Have you found that perfect partner and plan to pop the question? Tiffany & Co. offers a 10% military discount on engagement rings and wedding bands. Genesis Diamonds offers a 10% military discount on engagement rings. And Alpine Rings offers a 15% military discount to all active-duty, veterans, retirees and their families.

Homemade Gifts

Are you the crafty type? Want to get the kids involved? Homemade cards and crafts are fun Valentine’s gifts that add that extra personal touch. Stock up on craft supplies at Michaels, Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft stores and A.C. Moore.

Sweet Treats and Gift Baskets

Chocolate and other sweets are also standard Valentine’s Day gifts.

Sending sweets to a service member overseas? Send cookies and other gift baskets filled with treats from Cheryl’s Cookies, who offers free shipping on gifts sent to anyone serving on APO/FPO military bases.

Hickory Farms also offers free shipping to APO/FPO addresses. They have chocolate and all sorts of other gift baskets and goodies to choose from.

Massages

Give your Valentine the gift of relaxation with a professional massage. Massage Envy offers a military discount of $5 off their monthly membership. When you call to book an appointment, ask if they offer couples’ massages too.

Date Night

Valentine’s Day is the perfect excuse to head out for a date night.

If you’re celebrating with dinner and a movie, make sure to ask for military discounts. Some restaurants, like the Melting Pot, as well as some movie theaters, like Cinemark and Regal offer discounts for military members.

Interested in concerts or theater tickets for your night out? Ticket Monster sells discounted tickets to events nationwide.

If you’re looking for something a little different than dinner and a movie, get some ideas about local events from your ITT office on base. (Visit our Base Guide to find info about the base near you.)