Summer means trips to amusement parks and the beach, right? But since vacationing can be expensive (especially on a military family’s budget), there’s nothing better than saving some green while enjoying a summer break. Veterans and active service members can take advantage of the following discounts when visiting these amusement parks.
The Fab Five
It’s not cheap to visit Disney Parks, but they do love the military. Visiting Disney will cost you less if you book tickets online or through the MWR office on military bases. The military/veteran discount doesn’t end at the front gate either, so keep asking wherever you go in the parks. Make sure you bring your military ID with you if you plan on using the discount. Don’t forget to check out Shades of Green for a place to stay while visiting.
Universal Studios: Bring your military ID with you to get a reduced ticket price at the front gate. You can also visit your base military ticket office to get an even better discount. These discounted rates are NOT available at other ticket offices. You can now search for the nearest Military Ticket Program participating ticket office by clicking here.
Six Flags: Save 20 percent when you show your military ID and buy tickets at the guest services center at any Six Flags Park. Check with MWR/ITT on your base for a better discount on tickets.
Cedar Fair parks: You can receive discounted admission, with a proper ID, to any of the 13 Cedar Fair parks. You can purchase up to six additional tickets at the same discounted rate as well. This company owns Great America, Kings Dominion and Knott's Berry Farm.
SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment is offering free admission to its parks to Veterans and three of guests, who may enjoy free single-day admission to Busch Gardens Williamsburg in Virginia, Busch Gardens Tampa in Florida, and other SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment properties across the country from May 31 until July 15. Complimentary single-day tickets are available online only. They must be ordered before June 9 and used by July 15. The veteran must be present at the park. Visit www.WavesofHonor.com for more information.
Who doesn’t love the beach? Sun, surf, and sand scream vacation. Check out these beaches and lodging options available on American military installations across the globe.
Best beaches by military bases outside of the US
Rota, Spain: Naval Station Rota offers a private beach and the town of Rota is a popular vacation destination on its own. Relax on the wide beaches, explore the tree-lined streets of the town and enjoy local foods at a café. For veterans, this is such a deal because rooms at the Navy Lodge are less than $80 per night.
Camp Darby is on the Italian Rivera in Livorno. U.S. Army Garrison Livorno has an "American" beach that offers fireworks on the Fourth of July. Lodging at Sea Pines Lodge ranges from basic campsites to deluxe suites. Rooms start around $65 per night.
Okuma Beach and Recreation Center is a 135-acre site on Okinawa, Japan offering camping, cabana and cabin rentals. You can also enjoy jet skis, kayaks, snorkeling, scuba and other water sports. Basic rooms start around $55 per night. Other “American” beaches on the island are the Navy’s White Beach or the Cottages at Oura Wan Beach on the Marine Corps’ Camp Schwab.
Best beach by a military base in the US
California: Both San Onofre and Del Mar beaches can be found on Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton. There are lifeguards, food/vending, parking and rental cottages. In San Diego, you’ll find North Island on Naval Base Coronado.
Florida: Bring plenty of sunscreen when you visit Barrancas Beach at Naval Air Station Pensacola. Its white, powdery sand is so bright and reflective you’ll want to take extra precautions so you don’t get burned. MWR’s Oak Grove Park offers one-bedroom cottages for around $90 a day. In Key West, standard rooms at the Navy’s Beach Patio Recreation Center are available at around $55 daily.
North Carolina: Heading to Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune? Onslow Beach offers cabanas, rentals and RV camping opportunities with easy access to the Atlantic.
Virginia: The Gateway Inn at Naval Air Station Oceana is in close proximity to the Atlantic Beach A basic room is around $56 a night and VIP suites are around $76. Book early to lock in rates. If you are visiting Virginia Beach, check out Getaways Fort Story and 67th Street Townhomes