Don’t Be Afraid to Ask for a Military Discount
“Always ask for military discounts, and learn about local programs that host giveaways near military bases. With a large family in an expensive area, I'm always researching affordable things to do!” says Lizann Lightfoot from Seasoned Spouse.
Saving Doesn’t Mean Going Without
Milspouse blogger Nicole Gilbert says that you can still have fun, just plan for it. “Saving doesn't mean going without! Most museums and zoos either offer a military discount or have donation days where you can go in for the cost of a coffee. Do your research, plan ahead, and you'd be surprised at all the fun activities your family can do within your budget.”
Blue Star Families has made having fun particularly easy with their summer long Blue Star Museums program, which gives service members and their families free admission to many museums across the country.
Pack a Lunch When You Go Out on Weekends
“We don't eat out, really,” says Britni Miltner of the MilSpouse CoffeeHouse Podcast. “If we do, it's only about 2 or 3 times a month. My husband takes his lunch to work every day, and I work from home, so I eat at home. If we're going to be out and about on the weekends, we pack lunches, drinks, and snacks in a cooler.
Save Money on Food When You Travel
Meagan and Andy at Fuel for the Sole are full time travelers who also are self-described “budget junkies.” Since food makes up such a huge portion of any vacation budget, they have learned to save money by finding accommodations with kitchens (typically on home rental sites like Airbnb and VRBO) and then cooking some of their meals.
Of course, since experiencing new cuisines is such an important part of any trip, they budget for a few meals out and have learned to use websites and budget apps like Groupon, Living Social and Restaurant.com to find food and meal deals.