Summer Fun on a Dime for Military Families
28 Jul, 2017
Content provided courtesy of USAA.
By Angela Caban

School is out and summer is here, so it’s time to plan that summer fun to-do list for you and the family. Whether you are staying local or want to take a road trip, there are ways that you can visit some of the most fun attractions without stretching that wallet. All you need is your military identification card.

All across the country, attractions are offering various discounts (and sometimes at no cost) to military service members, spouses and their families. So, be sure to check locally if anyone offers a military discount (don’t assume, always ask) before packing the car and heading out of town. Most importantly, plan ahead of time. With a little bit of planning, you can be sure to hit up some of the most popular attractions at a fraction of the price. To get you started, here are some of the top summer attractions that offer military discounts.

Waves of Honor: Free for military members and up to three dependents, but these offers are not available at the park. To take advantage of this offer, you must register online at wavesofhonor.com. Locations include; Busch Gardens®  (Tampa, FL; Williamsburg, VA), Sesame Place® (Langhorne, PA), Sea World® (Orlando, FL; San Antonio, TX; San Diego, CA).

Disney: Promotional tickets offered for 4- or 5-day passes.

Shades of Green: This is the hotel just for military families on property at Walt Disney World® in Orlando, Florida. Shades of Green offers discounted accommodations specific for military members and their families.

LegoLand®: Florida and California locations offer free tickets to the military at the gate with no restrictions or blackout dates. They also offer deeply discounted tickets to non-active duty/family members and veterans. You can visit your local military base Tickets and Travel (ITT) office for details.

Hershey Park® (PA): Save $20 off regular admission.

Howe Caverns (NY): Daily military discounts are available upon request.

Balboa Park (CA): A San Diego must, be sure to take advantage of the generous military discount.

Callaway Gardens (GA): They offer many discount packages for military families, this is a perfect opportunity to head out on a road trip.

Blue Star Museums: Through a partnership between Blue Star Families and the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), over 2,000 museums around the country participate in this program that allows free admission for military families. It runs from Memorial Day to Labor Day, and you can find the list of participants online.

National Parks: A free annual pass is offered to current military to more than 2,000 federal recreation sites.

Vet Tix: If you have not yet created an account with this website, what are you waiting for? Vet Tix gives free tickets to military and their families to sporting events, concerts, performing arts, and activities around the country.

Armed Forces Vacation Club offers affordable vacation rentals in numerous destinations worldwide and membership is free.

Don’t forget to also check out your installation MWR or ITT office for a list of attractions near you.

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