Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Olympic Game Streaming Free for Military Families

Comcast and the Exchange are teaming up to provide 
free coverage of the 2016 Olympics in Rio to all military (retired included) and their families 
who have a shopmyexchange.com account. 

How to Stream Online:




Register for an account HERE



Steps outlined by shopmyexchange.com
Enjoy the Olympics until Aug 21. GO USA!



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Monday, August 1, 2016

Water Park Military Discounts

Looking for ways to stay cool this summer?


Many water parks offer great military discounts including:

Arizona
Wet'n'Wild Phoenix
Discounted tickets available on post

Big Surf Water Park
$8 off at gate


California
SeaWorld
Waves of Honor (HERE) or save $9 on post (HERE)


Florida
Wet'n'Wild Orlando
Buy one day pass, upgrade to a season pass (good for 2016) free (HERE)

Seaworld
Waves of Honor (HERE), or save $14.79 on post


Kansas
Oceans of Fun
$9 off at the gate, or discounted tickets on post (HERE)


North Carolina
Wet'n'Wild Emerald Pointe
$7 off at gate (up to 6 tickets)


Ohio
Kalahari Waterpark
Military discounts offered, rates change with season


Tennessee
Dollywood Water Park
30% off regular price, purchased at gate (HERE)


Texas
Seaworld
Waves of Honor (HERE), or save $22.88 on post


Virginia
Water Country USA
Free admission, free admission for 3 dependents (HERE)


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Wednesday, June 22, 2016

How To Pay Your Tricare Dental Bill with a Credit Card (Save $8)

This post goes over how to switch your Tricare Dental Bill over to your credit card so you can get credit card rewards points instead of having the payment deducted straight from your paycheck.

First lets briefly go over what the Tricare Dental Plan is about.

As an active duty military member, the military gives me free dental coverage that includes basically everything I would need to get done

For your Family/Dependents, you can purchase the Tricare Dental Program for a minimal monthly fee. See table below.
This provides free yearly checkups, and discounts on all dental procedures (see costs here)

When you enroll for payments you can either have them deduct the amount from your paycheck, do an EFT from your bank, and have it put on your credit card.

I would recommend calling and having them set it up so its automatically paid on your credit card. Why? More money in your pocket. You could be getting credit card rewards points

Example
Family Plan would be $34.68/month = $416.16/year. You put this on your 2% cash back credit card and that's an extra $8 bucks a year. Not much but it takes like 5 minutes to set up. I'm going to be in the military at least 7 more years so that's an extra $50 in credit card reward points for making a 5 minute phone call.

How do I switch my payment to credit card?
Call 1-855-638-8371. Give them your credit card number and they will switch it from an EFT from your bank/paycheck to automatically billing your credit card every month instead. (Click here for more information)

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Friday, June 17, 2016

Honda's $500 Military Discount

We recently bought a new 2016 Honda Odyssey. With two kids (10 months + 2 years) it was time to upgrade from our 2001 Honda Civic.

There were several discounts I got on the car, but the one I want to focus on here is the $500 military discount. 


Honda's $500 Military Discount is only eligable on new cars that are within the last two years (2015 and 2016 models). 

In order to get the discount there are a couple of requirements
  1. You must use their financing. This is not the end of the world given that they normally have pretty good offers. When I bought the minivan two months ago, it had a 5 year 0.9% APR rate which I was happy with. 
  2. You must be Active Military or Retired Military. So basically this is eligible for everyone! (including spouses of current military or retired military)
Best Strategy
I was able to get our minivan at a great deal. Here are a couple of suggestions
  • Call multiple dealerships in multiple cities. For example, Fresno (CA) and Seattle (WA) are on average 8% higher then the national average. It may be worth driving 40 miles in order to save $1500. Here is a list of the 10 cheapest and most expensive cities to buy a car in
  • Once you have a price from one dealership, ask the next dealership if they will BEAT the price. Dont just say they offered me "20k" will you match it, SAY they offered me "20k" I need you to beat it by $500 for it to be worth my time. Be specific with them. If they beat it ask the next dealership or the original one to beat it by $200, etc. I contacted/negotiated with 7 different dealerships.
  • TrueCar is okay, but Costco pricing is even better. Costco will often have specific incentitives like an extra $1000 off. 
  • HOWEVER, Dont settle for the TrueCar or Costco estimate, I got an additional $1400 off the Costco pricing and $2400 off the TrueCar estimate by asking for additional money off. 
  • When using TrueCars estimate, don't include your $500 Military Discount or Graduation bonuses in the cost because you are just cheating yourself. 
  • I don't recommend telling them about the Military Discount or Graduation Discount until the last second when you have already come up with a final price. At that time then say "Okay and i'm Active Duty Military so that will be an extra $500 off". They don't lose any money on the military discount but if you tell them about it at the beginning they will try and use it to their advantage saying they are giving you $500 off when they really aren't doing anything
  • 99% of the crap they say are lies. After this recent experience I am convinced Car Salesman are one of the most dishonest professions out there. They all say they exact same crap. "We'll throw in tinted windows and nitrogen in your tires. We are the only dealship that will do that". What they don't tell you is that comes pre--installed on every new minivan. Evey dealership has that in 100% of their cars. When you try and negotiate with them and say the other dealership gave you a better deal, they say crap like we'll thats what they said now..but when you get there they will tack on $1000 of dollars of extra fees. Not true. Salesman just love to lie.
  • When you negotiate talk about "price out the door". Thats the price you want to be comparing between all the dealerships. All cars have Title/Tax/License fees. Taxes can be a ton, depending on what state you live in. I live in Texas so the tax is 6.25% which his riduculously high. 
  • I made a google spreadsheat so I could keep track of all the different offers and update it when they gave me a lower price
  • If you call them on the phone to get a quote, give them your email and ask them to email you their total quote out the door. Don't fall for their trick of saying you have to come into their store to get a quote. Just another sales tactic. 
  • If looking specifically for a Honda - use this webpage (http://tellmethebest.com/honda.html) for what your goal should be to get the car for (the list includes - Odyssey, Accura, and CRV models)

There are alot of other companies that offer military discoutnts (Here are a few examples)
Crystler - $500 off (link)
Ford - $750 off (link)
GM - discount varies (link)
Hyundai - $500 off (link)
Toyota - $500 off (link)

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Monday, June 13, 2016

Free Antivirus Software (McAfee and Norton)

Protect your computer and data for free thanks to the military! 

Subscriptions last for several years. For example I downloaded McAfee Security in 2015 and it lasts til December 31, 2019. Thats 4.5 years of free awesome protection!!! Normally a yearly subscription can be over $50 so that is a savings of $200!!


Monday, June 6, 2016

Best Credit Cards for Being Deployed

I recently returned from a military field training exercise in San Antonio. While there I met several dentists that were about to deploy to Japan, Korea, etc. We got to talking about getting a credit card with ZERO foreign transaction fees.

Below are some examples these cards so that if you are deployed, will be getting deployed soon or stationed overseas you don't have to pay extra money to use your credit card



What are Foreign Transaction Fees?  This is a fee that credit card companies tack on to every purchase you make with their credit card overseas. Most credit cards have a foreign transaction fee of 3%.

Cards with ZERO Foreign Transaction fees

  • BankAmericard Travel Rewards
  • Chase Sapphire Preffered
  • Capital One Venture Card
  • Capital One Quicksilver
  • Barclay Arrival Plus
  • Discover It Miles
  • American Express Gold Card
  • Citi Prestige
  • Chase IHG
  • Penfed Platinum Rewards
  • USAA Cash Back Rewards Plus AMEX
  • USAA Cash Rewards Visa Signature
There are a ton more, This Post is just to remind you to get a credit card with 0% foreign transaction fees if you are going to be deployed anytime in the near future
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Thursday, May 26, 2016

Memorial Day 2016

2016 Memorial Day's Military Discounts.

Here's a list of discounts I was able to find online


Wednesday, May 25, 2016

U-Haul Military Discount (10-15%)

This post focuses on U-Hauls Military Discount. To view our post on all truck rental companies, click here: Military Discounts - Rental Truck Companies


UPDATE (JUNE 20, 2016) - Multiple readers have been commenting that U-Haul is currently NOT offering any type of discount. They have done this in the past when there has been high demand and no need to offer a discount. I wouldn't waste your time calling the number below given all the reports that no discounts are being given. I would still go online and check U-Haul, Budget, and Penske's price and compare them to make sure you get the best deal. In my past experience Budget has typically had the best price between the three companies.


U-Haul does not offer an "official" military discount. However, you can call the Sales Department at 800-468-4285 and they will often work out some type of discount. Their sales department is allowed to offer 10-15% off some reservations. Some of their representatives will give you that discount and some will not. Others have said that they will give you the discount but you must make the reservation at that moment. This 10-15% discount only applies if you are traveling one way (for example Phoenix to San Antonio). It typically doesn't work for "in-town" moves.

Sometimes this number (800-468-4285) will not directly connect to the sales department so always ask to be transferred to the sales department. They are the ONLY ones that can hook you up with a 10-15% discount. I used this a couple months ago when moving from West Phoenix to East Phoenix. It saved me about $15 last time on a $100 reservation.