Memorial Day is first and foremost an opportunity to remember and honor members of the American military that have given their lives in service to our country. In doing so, many businesses use the day as a chance to give a break to current or former members of the military and their families, by offering Memorial Day freebies and discounts as a gesture of appreciation.
We've got a list of places where active duty and retired military personnel can find Memorial Day freebies, deals, discounts, and other special offers. Most of these are pitched toward Monday, May 25, but some of them cover the whole Memorial Day weekend. You will need a valid U.S. military ID to receive the military discounts, and it's always good to double-check your specific location if the special discount is offered by a chain.
Veterans and active duty service members can get a free entrée on Monday, May 27 at participating Hooters locations nationwide.
Every day the Steakhouse chain offers its "hero's discount" which gives military personnel, nurses, doctors, medical staff, police officers, and firefighters 10% off their bill with a corresponding ID.
Active-duty service members and veterans get 10% off their check all day, every day at Bonefish Grill with a valid ID.
McCormick & Schmick's
For Memorial Day, McCormick & Schmick's Seafood Restaurants offers service members and veterans a discount of 10% off on May 25 when you dine in!
Golden Corral is pushing its Memorial Day special to Wednesday, November 11, where any person who has served in the U.S. Military can receive a free meal.
To honor military, medical personnel, first responders, and teachers, Home Chef is offering 50% off every first purchase of the meal subscription service, with 10% off of subsequent purchases.
The BBQ chain shop will be giving out free sandwiches to veterans and active-duty military members from May 11th to May 16th. The restaurant will be closed on Memorial Day our of respect for its employees.
Although there are no specific discounts for Memorial Day, veterans and active-duty military get a free VIB breakfast on Veterans Day. You can order online with the promo code VETSVIB when placing order for pick-up, one offer per online order, and proof of service is necessary at check out!
Chuck E. Cheese
Chuck E. Cheese is another supporter of military service. Just come into your local Chuck E. Cheese and ask about Memorial Day freebies and discounts for military families!
Fogo de Chao
Fogo de Chao is offering 50% off a meal for any veteran or active duty personnel on Memorial Day.
Retired and active duty military personnel get a 10% discount on their orders at participating Subway outlets! Check with your local Subway to see if they're participating in this special deal.
Active duty and retired military get a free donut and coffee at participating locations on Memorial Day. This Memorial Day freebie is made for those with a sweet tooth!
Cotton Patch Café
Although Cotton Patch Café doesn't have a specific Memorial Day discount, they offer a free Chicken Fried Steak or Chicken Fried Chicken Entrée on November 11.
Busch Gardens, SeaWorld & Sesame Place
For any U.S. active duty military, activated or drilling reservist, or National Guardsman near Tampa Bay, you can get one complimentary admission per year to either SeaWorld, Busch Gardens or Sesame Place. This is available for military personnel and as many as three direct dependents.
Walt Disney World Resort
U.S. military personnel can receive promotional theme park tickets! Choose between a 4-day or 5-day ticket.
All veterans can use Home Depot's 10% military discount on Memorial Day with a DoD-issued ID, a DD214 or a Veterans Driver's License. This deal is available for veterans on July 4th and Veterans Day as well.
Rack Room Shoes
For any military personnel in need of a new pair of shoes, Rack Room Shoes offers a 20% discount off your entire purchase in stores on Memorial Day to anyone with a military ID.
Idlewind & SoakZone
Idlewild and SoakZone offers free admission to military personnel on May 29, 30 and 31. To splash around with your family members, buy discounted military admission online.
Although there is no specific Amazon military discount, members of the military can save money with Amazon Prime Military shipping.
Ace Hardware has a 10% discount on most items in the store. Not all Ace Hardware stores participate in a military discount though we found that the vast majority of them are compliant. In order to receive 10% off most hardware items make sure that you present a valid military ID at the time of checkout.
The Costco Memorial Day freebie allows military members and veterans to purchase Costco Membership Activation Certificates, joining Costco as a new member and receiving a $30 Costco Shop Card.
All members of the military will receive free admission to the zoo on Memorial Day! They can also purchase up to six half-off tickets for members of their immediate family.
Blue Star Museums
To explore Blue Star Museums for free, active-duty military personnel, including the National Guard and Reserves, and their families can receive free admission. This Memorial Day freebie begins on Armed Forces Day, May 15, and ends on Labor Day, September 6.
Silverwood Theme Park
Military personnel and veterans receive free admission on May 29, 30 and 31, and immediate family members are eligible for a special discount.
Sun Splash Family Waterpark
On May 31, active or retired military, disabled veterans, and military reservists can get in for free, and up to four family members accompanying military personnel can receive a $3 discount.
Last but not least, for those military members looking for a vacation, Southwest offers military discounts to active military personnel and their families. Contact Southwest directly and show your military I.D.
This post was originally published on May 18, 2020.