Military Travel Discounts

Military Travel Discounts

A growing number of businesses in the travel industry honor U.S. service women and men by providing them with some pretty outstanding military travel discounts.

What is presented here is only a sampling of what currently is available from some of the major players in the travel industry when it comes to discounters for military service personnel.

Keep in mind that oftentimes these companies not only have discounts for military service women and men currently on active duty but they also have programs for vets as well.

7 Ways to Save

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Sandals is a travel industry leader when it comes to all-inclusive travel packages. Sandals resorts are located at luxurious tropical destinations.

At this time, Sandals is offering military service personnel with an across the board benefit. Active military service women and men get 10 percent off of any Sandals package. This discount applies to those packages that are already discounted.

In addition to a discount on all Sandals packages, different Sandals destinations oftentimes have special perks available for military service personnel. The company publicizes its ongoing commitment to thanking our troops for their service to our nation.

Norwegian Cruise Lines

Norwegian Cruise Lines is a travel industry leader when it comes to cruises. Norwegian Cruise Lines is also committed to honoring out troops.

The company offers active military service personnel with an array of different discounts on its multitude of cruises each year. Benefits include discounts on nearly every cruise the company offers throughout the course of any given year.

Norwegian Cruise Lines offers military service personnel added on-board benefits as well. These benefits for military service women and men and their families are in addition to discounts on cruise prices.

These different perks and benefits vary from one cruise to another.

Military Cruise Discounts

Westgate Resorts

Westgate Resorts has consistently been dedicated to supporting the men and women who serve our nation in the armed services. Westgate Resorts rightly refers to these brave people as “our nation’s greatest heroes.”

Westgate Resorts offers a special discount packager to all military service personnel. Men and women from the U.S. armed forces receive special 10 percent military travel discount at any Westgate property.

The Westgate Resort discount program is one of the easiest to access and use in the travel industry. All a person needs to is make note that he or she is a member of the armed services when making a reservation and the discount automatically is applied. At the time of check-in, a service member need only present his or her military ID.

All Westgate Resort properties participate in the military discount program. Westgate has spectacular five-star resorts located across the United States.

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Military Travel Discounts


AARP is well-known for the array of discounts offered to its members. Veterans are not forgotten by the AARP as the organization offers many specialized programs for vets and their families. These include access to a variety of travel discounts.

There are AARP members who are still on active duty. As a result, the organization has additional discount travel benefits for men and women on active duty as well, benefits that extend to their families.


Expedia is one of the largest comprehensive online travel services in operation today. Expedia provides a full spectrum of travel services, including booking air travel, hotel rooms, and so forth.

Expedia is also home to an array of travel bargains available in all sectors. Through Expedia, members of the military service can access an array of different types of travel discounts. These discounts include everything from airfare to lodgings and other travel related benefits.

Military Travel Discounts

Disney Resorts and Cruises

Over the course of many years, the Disney Company has been highly supportive of women and men in uniform. This remains the case today, including when it comes to special deals available from Disney at its resorts and on its cruises.

Members of the military service can obtain discounts for stays at any of the many Disney resort properties in the United States and elsewhere around the world. This includes discounts on lodging, admission to attractions, and many other offerings at a Disney resort property. A person on active duty, and his or her family, can also receive discounts on Disney package vacations. Want to see how one family was able to enjoy Disney on a budget? Click here.

In addition to discounts at resorts, Disney also offers military benefits on its cruises as well. Members of the military forces can obtain healthy discounts on the prices of cruise packages.

Many other enterprises in the travel industry offer discounts, special packages, and other benefits to military service personnel. When a member of the armed forces is planning a trip, it is always wise to ask what discounts or benefits may be available to a service member.

Wyndham Armed Forces Vacation Club

In order to honor men and women in the military service, Wyndham created the Armed Forces Vacation Club. The Armed Forces Vacation Club is open to all active members of the military branches.

One of the unique benefits offered via the Armed Forces Vacation Club is special access to Space-A stays. Space-A allows people, including families, rental options at travel destinations.

Military service personnel have access to $349 for weeklong Space-A stays in rental properties at different locations across the country. This truly represents one of the most affordable lodging options in the industry.

Getting ready to take a trip? Check out the most needed essentials here. Need some travel tips for your baby, click here. Have questions about traveling via airplane, check out this article on Airline Travel Tips.

If you found this advice, or any of my advice helpful, please consider buying from one of my affiliates at no additional cost to you and supporting The Military Move. When you click and make a purchase within 24 hours (at no additional charge), we receive a small donation. Thank you!

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The Best Tips for Military Families at Disney

Disney on a Budget

Disney World is one of the most magical places on Earth. From the smells, the treats, the rides, the characters, and the smiling and friendly staff, Disney is a favorite vacation location for us.

Want to know how we did Disney in a week for less than $2,500 for a family of 4 (at the time it was 3 adults, both parents, a grandparent, and 1 child)? I will share my budget and tips for how we made amazing memories in the happiest place on earth!

We love Disney so much, my daughter and I have been 4x in the last two years with a combination of different family members and friends.

Disney on a Budget

*This post may contain affiliate links – if you purchase something from this post, I receive a small commission with NO extra cost to you. To see my full disclosure click here. Thanks for supporting us!

Buy Military Tickets

  • We bought Military Tickets through the ITT office at our local base. The great part of this was that we plugged this into the MyDisney app and were able to order our Magic Bands ahead of time.

This also let us choose our Fast Passes, which saves you major time.

You can get these tickets also at Shades of Green; however, if you are not staying there – plan to get there, park, go in, stand in line, buy tickets, etc.

I do not recommend this if you plan on going to the parks the first day you get there – as this is wasting valuable time.

You can also get military rates at the park, but you will pay taxes on it.

  • One exception is the Florida Resident Tickets.  If the member has a home of record in Florida, this can be a cheap option as well. 
Disney Tips on a Budget

Call Disney Reservations

We did not stay at Shades of Green.  We went during Spring Break – one of the busiest times of year.

They were completely booked. 

However, we still stayed on the grounds.

Staying on the grounds means you don’t have to pay for transportation or parking at the gate ($20 per park).

  • By calling Disney, they will give you military rates  (usually up to 40% depending on the class of hotel) on your stay. 

When you call, they will ask you if you prefer Value, Moderate, or Deluxe rooms and will find you the cheapest resort with availability. 

My daughter was into Disney movies at the time so we chose the Disney All-Star Movie Resort – we got it for less than a $100 a night (about $94).

On another note, we also stayed in Coronado Springs during our Christmas stay and got a great rate ($120) because they were doing construction – which we did not care because we were in the park.

They gave us these cool pins as well. If you, or child, collects pins – these were a fun addition that you can’t buy at the shops or kiosks.

Bonus Pins

Bring Your Own Food

  • When you can, bring your own food. We chose not to do the dining plan.

BUT, we still ate on the grounds every day.

We even had breakfast at Be Our Guest (the Beauty and the Beast themed restaurant), and several other quick service Disney restaurants.

However, this area we could save money by bringing food with us. We were within driving distance, so we could use this to our advantage.

We bought food from the store that we could supplement for snacks and mostly breakfast.

If your room has a full freezer/fridge – take advantage of frozen breakfast foods, for example.

Cereals, croissants, pastries, and bagels are great for some breakfast meals where you do not have to pay in the park.

  • We also brought tons of snacks in our backpacks (Sun Chips, packets of nuts, Motts gummies, really any snack food that doesn’t melt in the HOT Florida sun! This saved us from buying tons of ice cream, popcorn, and pretzels.

Bring a Backpack

  • A backpack can serve as a diaper bag for young children, but it also helps with older children too.

If they are old enough, they can carry their own string back pack (like this one).

  • We carried bottled water (we brought a case with us) in our backpack as bottled water is about $4.00 a bottle in the park (obviously, tap water is free, or go to Starbucks – they give you free water).

We stuck all of our snacks in there as well.

Backpacks are also a great place for holding ALL the things that will occupy your time in the long lines (should you go during a high season time).

Prepare for Lines, Heat, and Rain

Long lines in peak season means bored children. 

Many rides have entertaining features, but there are some that well, are less thrilling.

  • Bring things to occupy their time. 

We brought bubbles, stickers and a notebook, and a cheap digital camera.

  • It is hot in Florida – of course. You can fall victim to the heat. Be sure to pack sunscreen and these cool mini-spray fans. 

We each had one, which are powered on batteries – and could mist ourselves whenever, wherever.

  • Also prepare by bringing ponchos. Ponchos in Disney World are much more expensive. Get yours here.

It is Florida and can rain at any moment – be prepared for it! Usually when it rains, the parks clear out, so use that time to jump in line for rides.

Check out this Disney Crowd Calendar from Touring Plans here to help you plan.
Prepare for Rain

Disney Magic

  • To add to the experience, we packed Disney trinkets that we found at the Dollar Tree and Walmart (coloring books, figurines, stickers, stuffed animals like Minnie/Mickey).

This limits how much you buy in the parks – which will be way more expensive.

Each night after she went to bed, we stuck a Disney item out for her to find in the morning – starting the magic each morning.

If you are driving to Disney, you can find a lot of Disney items at the neighborhood Walmarts for a great price (collectibles, t-shirts, etc.).

Our Disney Budget

Hotel Stay – $94 per night for 5 nights = $470

Tickets through ITT – 5 days @ $984 or 4 days @ $904 for 3 adults, 1 child

Food – Lunch and dinner – $30 per person per day – $600

Character Dining Experience (Breakfast) – $140

Gifts (from home) – $20

Other incidentals (snacks, gifts, parent’s Starbucks) – $280 = 4 people at 5 days – $14 per person per day

Grand Total – $2,494

Can you spend more? Of course! Did we experience Disney on this budget? Most definitely! See some of my pro tips below!

Enchanted Tales with Belle

Other Fabulous Tips

Umbrella Strollers

If you have a child under 5 – it is ideal to have a stroller of some sort.  I have brought both of my strollers on different occasions.

Disney is HUGE.  That is a lot of walking, no matter how many times you go back to the hotel.

Your child will be whining, your arms, shoulders, and neck will hurt from picking them up. Trust me, stick them in it and everyone will be happy!

Buy a cheap $20 umbrella stroller and take it with you. 

It folds up on the buses if you stay on one of the many gorgeous properties, and when you have to do stroller parking – it takes up little room.

Not only that, but you can use it to reserve some space for the parades. 

Park Hopper Tickets

When you purchase your tickets – be sure to add Park Hopper. 

For Military tickets – it is usually included and well worth it. 

Sometimes you want to do Animal Kingdom in the mornings and Magic Kingdom at night.

Animal Kingdom is VERY WARM especially from about March to October.  So hitting it before peak sun is great.

Also, the animals tend to find shady parts to lie in during afternoon hours, which makes the Safari Ride not as enjoyable. 

But there are a lot of exhibits to see neat things – and of course, I hear the new Pandora area is fabulous.

FastPass Perks

Magic Bands & Fast Passes

See that orange band on my daughter above?

Those are Magic Bands. You can get them even with ITT tickets.

They are the best technology Disney has come up with. 

Your hotel room card, your Fast Pass, and your Credit Card can all be stored on this wristband.

You can select who has the Credit Card on their band (if you are worried there band may fall off).  However, we never had an issue (even with 3 year old wrists).

You don’t have to carry cash with you, they just touch the Mickey and it goes straight onto your hotel bill.

It also stores your Fast Passes – which you MUST do if you want to maximize your time.

Fast Pass reservations can be made up to 60 days in advance.

Popular rides (Peter Pan, Splash Mountain, Seven Dwarfs Mine Train, Space Mountain) go quick, so make sure to book them.

You can also book passes to see characters.

She loved seeing all the princesses and her favorite Disney Jr characters (they are at Hollywood Studios). 

Once you use your 3 Fast Passes you can get more that day (but generally, it is what is leftover).

Get the MyDisney App

If you have a Smartphone – you MUST have the MyDisney App.

Download it on every adult phone.

It has maps of the parks, wait times of every ride and character experience, times for the parades, and park hours.

You can also link your reservations so that you have access to your Fast Pass reservations.

Experience Disney During the Holidays

This is not a budget tip, but more of a confirmation if you are asking yourself this question. Should we do a special event?

Disney World has different special events throughout the year.

No-So-Scary Halloween

Very Merry Christmas Party

Star Wars Galactic Nights

We took a special trip last year to Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party.  It was an additional expense, but we loved it. 

You get in at 4pm and experience Magic Kingdom decorated for Christmas.

Why did we enjoy this?

Limited crowds – so lines were much shorter.

Free goodies.  They have the BEST Snickerdoodle cookies and hot chocolate. Seriously!

Characters are out in the park, and there is a short line to see them. 

Disney Springs has Christmas trees decorated with all the major movie themes.  Great to see them in the morning and go to the park in the evening.

Fireworks In Magic Kingdom

Best Fireworks Location

One of the best experiences at the Magic Kingdom is their nightly fireworks. 

However, it is BEYOND crowded.

Everyone crowds to main street or the circular area right in front of the castle about 30-45 minutes before it starts. 

However, we found a great area to see the fireworks as our own little secret (especially if you have seen the show before).

If you go to Adventureland, find the Swiss Family Treehouse.  The bottom has a great view as well as the top (and it was filled with 3 families) – much more enjoyable.

However, you don’t get to see Tinkerbell fly.

If you HAVE seen the fireworks – this is the time when the busiest rides have hardly any wait – take advantage.

Go to Epcot

I hear the question asked, “If we can’t do all of the parks, which one should we drop?”

Do not choose Epcot to drop – if you have small children. 

Here is why…

Epcot is filled with many countries – all with food and places to sit.  You know what kids love? FOOD!

Epcot Treats

Not only that, but there are some very fun rides at Epcot. 

The “Golf Ball” at Epcot was one of my daughter’s favorite rides – it is slow, but it takes them on a neat journey through time. 

You also have the Frozen ride, Soarin™, The Land – which you ride on a slow moving boat and see all the hydroponics and greenhouses they have, the boat in Mexico (with Donald Duck), Finding Nemo (and the aquarium after it), Fast Track, and Mission Space.  

If nothing else, hit it on it’s late hour days and do a 1/2 day with your Disney Park Hopper.


If you found this advice, or any of my advice helpful, please consider buying from one of my affiliates at no additional cost to you and supporting The Military Move. When you click and make a purchase within 24 hours (at no additional charge), we receive a small donation. Thank you!

Kelsey Ramirez

About the Author

Kelsey Ramirez is a Real Estate Broker in western Washington. She is also a veteran elementary school teacher, military wife, and mom to two daughters.  She is the founder of The Military Move, a military-based website to help families in the PCS process. Kelsey loves to travel, write, and create amazing content.  She has her Masters in Technology, which she uses to learn all new things digital.

With three decades of military support, Kelsey’s mission is to help new and existing military families in their unique adventures through all military topics including PCSing, budgeting, school choice and rights, housing, and especially just being a military spouse.

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