I received an email from a military spouse who asked, what were some of the key benefits of military retirement?
Reflecting back on my husband’s retirement eight years ago, I consider the following my top twelve perks for military retirees.
- Military Retirement Income – on average, soldiers serving twenty years or more are able to retire and receive 50% of their base salary. Visit the Social Security Administration website for clarification. There are some soldiers that live comfortably off their retirement while others move on to other career fields.
- Military Identification Cards – the soldier and authorized family members will each receive an updated military identification card.
- Local Medical Care – retirees who are fortunate enough to retire in a community with a military base are authorized to use the medical facilities on an appointment basis, typically by contacting Tricare.
- Healthcare Insurance – in comparison to what private citizens pay for healthcare coverage, this benefit alone ranks pretty high for its affordability. Questions about healthcare insurance plans can be addressed by visiting Tricare.
- Dental Insurance – again when you compare what private citizens pay for dental coverage, this benefit is well worth the investment. It’s affordable and you can have the payment automatically deducted from your military retirement pay. Note: effective January 2014, all retirees must have dental premium payments automatically deducted from their retirement pay. Visit Tricare Retiree Dental Program online to learn more.
- Commissary Privileges – if you retire in a community with a military base, you can shop at the commissary. For more information about military commissaries visit, commissaries.com.
- Base Exchange Services – as a military retiree, you are authorized to shop the base exchange, tax free, locally and online.
- Base Entertainment Venues – movie theaters, bowling centers, clubs, and eateries.
- Exercise and Fitness – visit your local base gym where you get a good work-out or schedule a tee time on the golf course. Visit Military Golf Courses Guide to locate golf courses in the United States.
- Military Lodging – military retirees are authorized to reserve leisure overnight stays at military lodging facilities, on a space available basis. To locate military lodging facilities and to learn more about space availability, visit Department of Defense Lodging.
- Military Vacation Resorts – as a retiree you have affordable access to wonderful sandy beaches and full-scale vacation resorts. Did I say affordable? To begin planning your vacation, visit the following websites: Armed Forces Recreation Center Resorts, Armed Forces Vacation Club, and Government Vacation Rewards. To access discounts for veterans, visit Military and Veterans Discount Center for specific discounts.
- Educational Assistance – take advantage of educational benefits and various other programs offered through the Veterans Administration. Two of the more popular educational programs include: the Post-911 GI Bill and the Veterans Retraining Assistance Program.
What is your favorite military retirement perk? Feel free to post a comment below.
Congratulations on your retirement, the best is yet to come!
About the Author: Victoria M. Parham is a (retired) army wife, Army veteran, talk radio host, and Career Strategist. Propelling people to reach their greatest career potential. To learn more, visit my blog: www.victoriaparham.com