Free Beach at Sea Girt, NJ
Guard Soldiers and their families can enjoy free beach facilities at the Army National Guard’s Training Center at Sea Girt, NJ. Enjoy a day of fun and sun. All it will cost is the gas to get there.
Free hunting and fishing licenses
Guard soldiers qualify for free hunting and fishing licenses in New Jersey. Get more info at www.njfishandwildlife.com.
Fly For Free
Guard Soldiers can travel free on military planes when space is available. You can fly within and between the Continental United States, Alaska, Hawaii, Guam and Puerto Rico. Availability is based on a priority system. www.amc.af.mil/home/amc-travel-site.
Discount Shopping and more
Guard and Families can enjoy privileges at military installations around the world, including tax-free discount shopping at any Military Exchange (department store) and commissary (grocery store). Other retail and lodging discounts are also available. You can even shop online at www.shopmyexchange.com.
The Guard cares about the health of Soldiers and their Families. Military members and their Families can purchase inexpensive health coverage from TRICARE Reserve Select (TRS), for the top-quality healthcare they deserve. Visit www.tricare.mil. The TRICARE Retiree Dental Program can be accessed at www.trdp.org.
Low-cost life insurance plans are available for Guard Soldiers - up to $400,000. Family members are eligible for Family Service Members' Group Life Insurance (FSGLI), which offers insurance to spouses and dependent children of Guard members insured under SGLI. www.benefits.va.gov/insurance.
Thrift Savings Plan
As a member of the uniformed services, you have the opportunity to participate in one of the finest retirement plans in the world. The TSP is a retirement benefit that allows Federal employees and members of the uniformed services to increase their retirement income by contributing to a long-term savings and investment plan. www.tsp.gov.
As a member of the Guard, you can be deployed on short notice. And by federal law, when you have to leave your job to serve your country, you are assured of being able to come back to work when you return. The Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA) protects your right to be re-employed in the same position upon returning from military service. www.njesgr.mil or twitter.com/nj_esgr.
Veterans Administration (VA) Home Loans
Guard Soldiers may be eligible for VA home loans with minimum or no down payment. Working through private lenders, such as banks, savings and loans, and mortgage companies, VA guarantees loans for homes up to a pre-determined amount and can also eliminate the need for private mortgage insurance. www.benefits.va.gov/homeloans.
Federal Retirement Plan
You probably won’t be thinking about retirement for many years, but think about this: The Guard can continue to pay you every month after you have finished serving. This is on top of any benefits from your civilian career and any other retirement funds you may have coming. You can automatically be enrolled in the Survivor Benefit Plan of the Armed Forces when you begin receiving retired pay, thus guaranteeing your spouse up to 55% of your retired pay after your death.
Veteran's Hiring Preference
New Jersey values the contributions that our veterans have made, and continue to make, for our country's freedom and for other nations around the world. As such, New Jersey's merit system provides absolute veterans preference in employee selection. This means that qualified veterans are placed at the top of an open competitive employment list ahead of non-veterans regardless of their scores. For more information visit nj.gov/csc/seekers/veterans.
Army Morale, Welfare and Recreation Program (MWR)
MWR activities include arts and crafts facilities, bowling centers, golf courses, libraries, outdoor recreation, recreation centers, youth services activities and recreation membership clubs. Local MWR facilities may offer significant discounts on popular local and national family attractions. In most instances, Guard members and their dependents are eligible to use all facilities on the same basis as active duty personnel. Visit www.armymwr.com for more information.
Military Recreational Facilities
Off the post from coast to coast, the Army’s leisure travel program offers National Guard soldiers endless travel and vacation opportunities at competitive prices. Information, Ticketing and Reservation (ITR) Offices provide assistance with vacation planning, hotel reservations, and ticket sales for national and regional attractions - theme parks, sporting events, historic/cultural sites, museums, theaters, special events and more. Tickets to attractions like Walt Disney World, Disneyland, Sea World, Universal Studios or Busch Gardens are just a few of the ways local ticket offices pass savings on to soldiers. Other discounts are available for hotels and timeshare properties at vacation destinations throughout the U.S. including Branson, Las Vegas, Myrtle Beach, New York, Orlando, and more!
Traveling anytime soon? Hawaii? A family theme park? As a member of the Army National Guard you will qualify to use on-post military temporary housing when available. This is a great benefit no matter where you are going. Visit new.armymwr.com/travel/lodging.
Shades of Green on WALT DISNEY WORLD
Shades of Green is an Armed Forces Recreation Center (AFRC) located in Central Florida. The newly expanded Shades of Green is one of two AFRC's located in the continental U.S. The Shades of Green Resort is a true resort destination; offering the perfect mix of exceptional resort accommodations and friendly hospitality. This resort is designed to provide R&R for our nation's brave servicemembers and their families. Visit www.shadesofgreen.org.
Waves of Honor
Members of the military and as many as three direct dependents may enter SeaWorld, Busch Gardens or Sesame Place parks with a single-day complimentary admission. Visit wavesofhonor.com.
Blue Star Museums
Blue Star Museums is a collaboration among the National Endowment for the Arts, Blue Star Families, the Department of Defense, and more than 2,000 museums across America to offer free admission to the nation’s active duty military personnel including National Guard and their families from Memorial Day through Labor Day. Visit www.arts.gov/national/blue-star-museums.