Vets and Their Vehicles: Helping Those Who Served

Vets and Their Vehicles: Helping Those Who Served

Nothing can fully repay veterans for the work they have done. They’ve defended our rights, protected our freedoms and faced dangerous situations so that others wouldn’t have to.

Vets and Their Vehicles: Helping Those Who ServedEven though no complete reimbursement exists, veterans can enjoy certain benefits because of the time they spent in the military. For example, veterans and current military personnel have special options to finance a new car or land great insurance rates.

New Car Discounts

Veterans can receive special discounts on new cars from quality automobile manufacturers including Ford, Chrysler, Toyota and General Motors. With Ford’s program, eligible members of the military can qualify for special offers to use toward the purchase or lease of a Ford vehicle. Chrysler offers a $500 cash allowance to qualifying military personnel, as well as three years of complimentary oil, lube and filter service. Toyota offers a $500 rebate that military members can use to reduce the cost of a new vehicle, and General Motors also honors discount prices to those who served.

Although these programs are sponsored by the manufacturers themselves, veterans can take advantage of similar benefits at most local dealerships.

Financing Incentives

Regardless of where a veteran chooses to purchase a new car, he or she will typically need financing. Fortunately, vets can also qualify for financing incentives from certain lenders. According to a DriveTime dealership in San Antonio, for example, they offer a financing incentive under the Military Merit Program, which allows military personnel to finance a vehicle with an interest rate that is 3 percent lower than the going rate for non-military borrowers.

The United Services Automobile Association, which extends membership only to military personnel and their families, also presents exclusive auto loans that aren’t available to non-military members. These loans typically carry lower interest rates and better terms than loans found on the standard market.

Veterans who also use USAA’s car-buying service may qualify for even better offers.

Insurance Discounts

Vets and active members of the military can often qualify for stellar discounts on auto insurance. Geico, for instance, offers a flat rate discount of up to 15 percent off insurance premiums to both active and retired military personnel.

There are also insurance policies available only to qualifying members of the military, through both USAA and Armed Forces Insurance.

Supplemental Income

Even if veterans are able to use these incentives, rebates and special offers to reduce the cost of purchasing and owning a car, some may still lack the income needed to afford a new vehicle. In such cases, veterans may be able to qualify for extra compensation from the government.

Veterans with disabilities who appeared or were worsened by military service can qualify for tax-free compensation based on the severity of their disability. Individuals with extreme disabilities, such as a missing limb, may also be eligible for special monthly compensation in addition to their disability benefits.

Finally, veterans who served during wartime and earn a low income may be able to receive a pension from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, according to VA.gov.

It may be a small gesture, but these benefits are just a few of the ways auto industries and businesses across America are looking to give back to our heroes.

Tim Esterdahl

Tim Esterdahl is the editor of IFCS blog. He is a married father of three and enjoys golf in his spare time.

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