military http://www.wisebread.com/taxonomy/term/726/all en-US 5 Best Credit Cards For Military Personnel and Families http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-credit-cards-for-military-personnel-and-families <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/5-best-credit-cards-for-military-personnel-and-families" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/000069547871.jpg" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>The United States demands a lot from our service men and women, and their families have unique needs when it comes to their personal finances. Thankfully, there are financial products specifically designed for their needs.</p> <p>In addition, the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA) regulates the terms, fees, and interest rates that credit card issuers are allowed to charge active duty service members. For example, it limits interest rates to a maximum of 6%, and credit card issuers will waive most late fees and annual fees. With this in mind, here are the best credit cards for military families.</p> <h2>USAA Cashback Rewards Plus American Express Card</h2> <p><a title="USAA Cashback Rewards Plus American Express&reg; Card" alt="USAA Cashback Rewards Plus American Express&reg; Card" rel="nofollow" target="_blank" href="http://ct.wisebread.com/click.php?pg=42&amp;pid=83&amp;pp=1&amp;uv=xcard&amp;fot=1260"><img border="0" style="float:right;margin:0 10px;" class="img-exempt" alt="" src="http://content.linkoffers.net/SharedImages/Products/220355/603556.png" /></a>The <a rel="nofollow" target="_blank" href="http://ct.wisebread.com/click.php?pg=42&amp;pid=83&amp;pp=1&amp;uv=xname&amp;fot=1260">USAA Cashback Rewards Plus American Express&reg; Card</a> offers 5% cash back on your first $3,000 spent on combined gas and military base purchases each year, 2% cash back on your first $3,000 on supermarket purchases per year, and unlimited 1% cash back on all other purchases. To apply for this card, you must first join USAA which is open to all active duty and retired military service members, and their families. There is no annual fee for this card, and no penalty interest rate, however, there is a 1% foreign transaction fee imposed on all purchases processed outside of the United States. Finally, USAA offers a deployment APR of 4% up to 12 months.</p> <p><a rel="nofollow" target="_blank" href="http://ct.wisebread.com/click.php?pg=42&amp;pid=83&amp;pp=1&amp;uv=xend&amp;fot=1260"><strong>Click here to learn more and apply for the USAA Cashback Rewards Plus American Express&reg; Card today!</strong></a></p> <h2>USAA Rate Advantage Platinum Visa</h2> <p><a target="_blank" rel="nofollow" alt="USAA Rate Advantage Platinum Visa&reg;" title="USAA Rate Advantage Platinum Visa&reg;" href="http://ct.wisebread.com/click.php?pg=42&amp;pid=90&amp;pp=2&amp;uv=xcard&amp;fot=1260"><img border="0" alt="" class="img-exempt" style="float:right;margin:0 10px;" src="http://content.linkoffers.net/SharedImages/Products/220561/605609.png" /></a>Rather than a rewards card, the <a target="_blank" rel="nofollow" href="http://ct.wisebread.com/click.php?pg=42&amp;pid=90&amp;pp=2&amp;uv=xname&amp;fot=1260">USAA Rate Advantage Platinum Visa&reg;</a> offers an APR as low as 7.15% (up to24.15%, based on your creditworthiness). If you know that you'll need to keep a balance on the card, the most important feature of a credit card to use would be the APR. USAA offers the 4% Deployment APR on this card as well, up to 12 months.</p> <p><a target="_blank" rel="nofollow" href="http://ct.wisebread.com/click.php?pg=42&amp;pid=90&amp;pp=2&amp;uv=xend&amp;fot=1260"><strong>Click here to learn more and apply for the USAA Rate Advantage Platinum Visa&reg; today!</strong></a></p> <h2>The Platinum Card from American Express</h2> <p><a target="_blank" rel="nofollow" alt="The Platinum Card&reg; from American Express" title="The Platinum Card&reg; from American Express" href="http://ct.wisebread.com/click.php?pg=42&amp;pid=11&amp;pp=3&amp;uv=xcard&amp;fot=1260"><img border="0" alt="" class="img-exempt" style="float:right;margin:0 10px;" src="http://content.linkoffers.net/SharedImages/Products/156/606842.png" /></a>This is a benefit-packed that comes with a hefty annual fee, but American Express will waive the $450 annual fee of their <a target="_blank" rel="nofollow" href="http://ct.wisebread.com/click.php?pg=42&amp;pid=11&amp;pp=3&amp;uv=xname&amp;fot=1260">Platinum Card&reg;</a> for active duty service members. Cardholders receive one Membership Rewards point for each dollar spent, and these points can be transferred to 16 airline partners and four hotel partners. Plus, get complimentary Hilton HHonors<sup>TM</sup> Gold Status upon enrollment. Furthermore, cardholders get access to the airport lounge network of Delta's SkyClub, Priority Pass Select, and Amex's own Centurion clubs. You also receive a $200 annual airline fee credit, and a statement credit toward Global Entry or TSA PreCheck application, all of which can be very useful to service members deployed overseas who travel frequently. Finally, there are no foreign transaction fees for this card. Terms and limitations apply.</p> <p><a target="_blank" rel="nofollow" href="http://ct.wisebread.com/click.php?pg=42&amp;pid=11&amp;pp=3&amp;uv=xend&amp;fot=1260"><strong>Click here to learn more and apply for the Platinum Card&reg; from American Express today!</strong></a></p> <h2>Citi Prestige</h2> <p><a target="_blank" href="http://ct.wisebread.com/click.php?pg=42&amp;pid=53&amp;pp=4&amp;uv=xcard"><img width="154" border="0" style="float:right;margin:0 10px;" class="img-exempt" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u784/10.22-CitiPrestigeCard-191.jpg" /></a>Like the American Express Platinum, the <a target="_blank" href="http://ct.wisebread.com/click.php?pg=42&amp;pid=53&amp;pp=4&amp;uv=xname">Citi Prestige&reg; card</a> from our partner Citi also has a $450 annual fee that is waived for active duty military members. It features 3x ThankYou Points for air travel and hotel purchases, 2x points for spending on entertainment and on dining out, and one point per dollar spent on other purchases. Points can be transferred to ten different airline programs as well as Hilton HHonors. You also get a $250 annual airline travel credit, and a $100 Global Entry Application fee credit. Finally, there are no foreign transaction fees for this card.</p> <p><a target="_blank" href="http://ct.wisebread.com/click.php?pg=42&amp;pid=53&amp;pp=4&amp;uv=xend"><strong>Click here to learn more and apply for the Citi Prestige&reg; Card today!</strong></a></p> <h2>PenFed Defender American Express</h2> <p>PenFed is the Pentagon Federal Credit Union, an organization that was created to offer financial services to members of the military, defense industry employees, and their families. Their PenFed Defender American Express card offers 1.5% cash back on all purchases, with no limits. It also features no fees for anything, including annual fees, foreign transaction fees, cash advance fees, balance transfer fees, and even late fees. Furthermore, it offers a 4.99% APR promotional interest rate on balance transfers for 12 months. This card is offered to those in active duty military service including those in the National Guard and the Reserves as well as any honorably discharged Veteran of the United States Military.</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/jason-steele">Jason Steele</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-credit-cards-for-military-personnel-and-families">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-13"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-0-balance-transfer-credit-cards">The 5 Best 0% Balance Transfer Credit Cards</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-secured-credit-cards">The 5 Best Secured Credit Cards</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/top-5-travel-reward-credit-cards">5 Best Travel Reward Credit Cards</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-cash-back-credit-cards">5 Best Cash Back Credit Cards</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-low-interest-rate-credit-cards">The Best Low Interest Rate Credit Cards</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Credit Cards best credit cards military Tue, 22 Dec 2015 06:37:49 +0000 Jason Steele 1507356 at http://www.wisebread.com USAA Cash Rewards Visa: Military Benefits and Cash for Spending http://www.wisebread.com/usaa-cash-rewards-visa-military-benefits-and-cash-for-spending <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/usaa-cash-rewards-visa-military-benefits-and-cash-for-spending" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/000069547855.jpg" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>The <a target="_blank" rel="nofollow" href="http://track.linkoffers.net/a.aspx?foid=14308621&amp;fot=1282&amp;foc=1&amp;fobs=link1">USAA Cash Rewards Visa</a> offers a cash back rewards program, along with the military benefits USAA products are known for. However, its tiered base program may be confusing so check out the details before you consider applying. (Check out the <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-gas-and-military-credit-card-usaa-cashback-rewards-plus-american-express">USAA Cashback Rewards Plus American Express</a> for a more straightforward cash rewards card.)</p> <h2>How This Card Works</h2> <p>The rewards program is tiered based on your annual spending. For example, if you use your credit card for total purchases up to $5,000 within the year, you are awarded 0.45% cash back. If your purchases are over $5,000 but less than $10,000, you earn $22.50 plus 0.85% cash back. Purchases over $10,000 but less than $17,000 earn $65 plus 1% cash back, and purchase totals over $17,000 per year are awarded $135 plus 1.25% cash back.&nbsp;</p> <p>Cash back is awarded in January for purchases made in the previous year. You can earn an unlimited amount of cash back without limitations, and your rewards do not expire.</p> <p>In order to apply for the card, you must be a USAA member, which requires participation in the military or to be a family member of one.</p> <h2>Other Benefits</h2> <p><strong>MemberShop.</strong> USAA provides a free online shopping center with popular retailers such as Macy's and Overstock.com, where you can earn additional rewards for your purchases, on top of the rewards you earn from using your credit card.</p> <p><strong>4% APR rates.</strong> USAA offers military personnel an APR of 4% on balances for up to 12 months during deployment or PCS. After 12 months, your rate will return to your card variable APR of 10.15% to 26.15%. You can also qualify for the 4% SCRA rate when you have a balance at the time of entering active military duty for one year after completing active duty.</p> <p><strong>Finance charge rebate.</strong> Get a rebate for finance charges accrued while serving in a qualified military campaign.</p> <p><strong>Chip technology. </strong>Include a microchip for added security and protection when using your credit card. Credit cards with chips are accepted worldwide, and are often preferred over credit cards with only the magnetic stripe, especially with European retailers.</p> <p><a target="_blank" href="http://track.linkoffers.net/a.aspx?foid=14308621&amp;fot=1282&amp;foc=1&amp;fobs=app2"><img alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/apply-now.png" /></a></p> <h2>Costs</h2> <ul> <li>$0 Annual Fee</li> <li>10.15% to 26.15% variable APR</li> <li>3% Balance Transfer Fee (up to $200 maximum)</li> <li>1% Foreign Transaction Fee</li> </ul> <h2>Pros</h2> <p><strong>No spending categories.</strong> Although based on tiers according to your spending, the card does not include any special spending categories or categories that change every quarter. Any type of purchase you make with the card, whether groceries, department stores, or dining, is awarded cash back.</p> <p><strong>Military benefits.</strong> An important distinction between the USAA credit cards and others, is that USAA provides products specifically for military personnel and their family members. This not only means you receive rates and benefits specific to your situation, service, and lifestyle, but you are able to communicate with USAA experts who are familiar with service members. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-gas-and-military-credit-card-usaa-cashback-rewards-plus-american-express?ref=seealso">Best Credit Cards for Military Personnel and Families</a>)</p> <h2>Cons</h2> <p><strong>No sign-up bonuses.</strong> Many cash rewards credit cards offer new cardmembers a sign-up bonus if a certain spending requirement is met. For cards without annual fees, this bonus can be as much as $100. There is also no promotional APR offered, which can help you save money if you need to transfer a balance or make a large purchase without paying interest. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-credit-cards-that-offer-bonus-cash-for-sign-up?ref=seealso">Cards with the Best Cash Sign Up Bonuses</a>)</p> <p><strong>Tiered rewards program. </strong>If your annual spending is less than $17,000, you won't get the full benefit of the cash rewards. You might want to consider another card, such as the <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/unlimited-cash-back-the-quicksilver-cash-rewards-credit-card">Capital One QuickSilver Cash Rewards Card</a>, which awards a flat rate of 1.5% cash back on all purchases, regardless of how much you spend annually.</p> <p><strong>Annual rebates.</strong> Rewards are awarded once per year in January, based on your purchases in the prior year. Most rewards credit cards allow you to redeem or claim your rewards when you have accumulated a certain amount, usually as low as $20.</p> <p><strong>Foreign transaction fee.</strong> The foreign transaction fee of 1% is among the lowest charged-except for those that <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-secured-cards-with-low-or-no-foreign-transaction-fees">don&rsquo;t charge a foreign transaction fee at all</a>. If you frequently use your card abroad or on foreign purchases, the foreign transaction fee will cancel out the cash back you earn from the purchases.</p> <h2>Who This Card Is Best For</h2> <p>The USAA Cash Rewards Visa is best for military personnel and their family members who prefer earning cash back on all purchases rather than on specific categories. It's also best if the majority of your spending is domestic, and particularly ideal if you spend over $17,000 per year to earn the highest rate of rewards offered.</p> <p><a target="_blank" rel="nofollow" href="http://track.linkoffers.net/a.aspx?foid=14308621&amp;fot=1282&amp;foc=1&amp;fobs=link2"><strong>Click here to learn more and apply for the USAA Cash Rewards Visa Card today!</strong></a></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/christina-majaski">Christina Majaski</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/usaa-cash-rewards-visa-military-benefits-and-cash-for-spending">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-1"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-credit-cards-for-military-personnel-and-families">5 Best Credit Cards For Military Personnel and Families</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-gas-and-military-credit-card-usaa-cashback-rewards-plus-american-express">The Best Gas and Military Credit Card: USAA Cashback Rewards Plus American Express</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/rebuilding-credit-military-personnel-should-consider-the-usaa-classic-american-express-credit-card">Rebuilding Credit: Military Personnel Should Consider the USAA Classic American Express Credit Card</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/independence-day-roundup-military-vs-civilian-credit-cards">Independence Day Roundup: Military vs. Civilian Credit Cards</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/usaa-active-military-world-mastercard-custom-benefits">USAA Active Military World MasterCard: Custom Benefits</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Credit Cards military Fri, 13 Nov 2015 20:07:32 +0000 Christina Majaski 1577209 at http://www.wisebread.com USAA Active Military World MasterCard: Custom Benefits http://www.wisebread.com/usaa-active-military-world-mastercard-custom-benefits <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/usaa-active-military-world-mastercard-custom-benefits" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/000017225407.jpg" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>United Services Automobile Association (USAA) is a leader in providing military personnel with a wide variety of financial products from auto insurance to credit cards. The <a target="_blank" rel="nofollow" href="http://track.linkoffers.net/a.aspx?foid=14308623&amp;fot=1281&amp;foc=1&amp;fobs=link1">USAA Active Military World MasterCard</a> includes the opportunity to earn the way you choose, plus benefits and services that service members and their family members can appreciate.</p> <h2>USAA Membership</h2> <p>Qualification for the USAA Active Military World MasterCard requires USAA membership. You can become a member if you or your spouse has served in the military, or if your parent or spouse is a USAA member.</p> <h2>How This Card Works</h2> <p>You can choose to earn cash rewards or USAA rewards points.</p> <p><strong>USAA Cash Rewards.</strong> If you choose cash rewards, you can earn up to 1.25% for each dollar spent with card. The amount you earn from cash rewards is based on your annual net purchases, with no limit to the amount of cash back you can earn. If your purchases in the previous year are from $0 to $5,000, you earn 0.45% of all net purchases. If you spend $5,000 to $10,000, you earn a cash rewards rebate of $22.50 plus 0.85% for purchases made over $5,000. Purchases of $10,000 to $17,000 are awarded $65 plus 1%, and over $17,000 is $135 plus 1.25%. Rebates for cash rewards are awarded every January for purchases made in the previous 12 months.</p> <p><strong>USAA Rewards.</strong> If you prefer the USAA rewards program, you earn one point for each dollar spent with the card. You can use your points for airfare with Affinion Loyalty Group, which is USAA&rsquo;s travel service. Airline travel rewards are available at 15,000 points for $150. You can also redeem points for gift cards and merchandise at 3,500 for a $25 value, or cash rewards at 3,000 points for $25. The best value is in rewarding points for travel, but when you redeem for cash, the value of each point increases if you redeem larger numbers of points. For instance, you can redeem 20,000 points for $200. There is no cap on the number of points you can earn and your points do not expire.</p> <h2>Other Benefits</h2> <p><strong>Reduced APR.</strong> As a cardmember you qualify for a reduced APR of 4% for up to 12 months during deployment or PCS on all balances. The regular APR will apply after 12 months.</p> <p><strong>SCRA rate. </strong>You also qualify for a 4% rate on existing balances when you enter active military duty, during the period you are serving your country.</p> <p><strong>Qualified military campaign rebate. </strong>You receive a rebate of all finance charges accrued during a qualified military campaign, which is any war or military conflict which establishes a campaign medal in which the President of the U.S. issues an Executive Order. Examples include Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal, Iraq Campaign Medal, and Operation New Dawn Medal.</p> <p><strong>Assistance during deployment. </strong>USAA membership includes experts who can help you prepare for deployment, and help during and after deployment.</p> <p><strong>USAA MemberShop. </strong>You can earn additional rewards when you use your card to shop popular retailers through USAA MemberShop. You can also receive special offers and opportunities for extra savings.</p> <p><a href="http://track.linkoffers.net/a.aspx?foid=14308623&amp;fot=1281&amp;foc=1&amp;fobs=app2"><img alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/apply-now.png" /></a></p> <h2>Costs</h2> <ul> <li>$0 Annual Fee</li> <li>10.15% to 26.15% variable APR</li> <li>3% Balance Transfer Fee (up to $200 maximum)</li> <li>1% Foreign Transaction Fee</li> </ul> <h2>Pros</h2> <p><strong>Possible low interest rate. </strong>There are not only low APR opportunities offered to those on active duty, but you can also qualify for an APR as low as 10.15%, which is among the lowest offered by any rewards credit card. Typically, the credit cards which offer the <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-low-interest-rate-credit-cards">lowest interest rates</a> do not offer rewards programs, making you choose between rewards and a low APR.</p> <p><strong>No spending categories.</strong> No matter which rewards program you select, you get the same rate of rewards on all purchases. Rewards credit cards often award purchases made in specific categories such as gas or groceries, or require you to enroll in categories that change quarterly in order to earn the most rewards.</p> <p><strong>Military service member benefits.</strong> The USAA credit cards are designed specifically for military personnel and their family members, and provide benefits and services that you won&rsquo;t find with other credit cards. Furthermore, you can rest assured knowing that your credit card issuer understands and appreciates your job and the ins and outs of military life. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-credit-cards-for-military-personnel-and-families?ref=seealso">Best Credit Cards for Military Personnel and Families</a>)</p> <h2>Cons</h2> <p><strong>No 0% introductory APR. </strong>Many rewards credit cards offer an introductory APR of 0%, giving new card members an opportunity to save money in interest payments by either transferring a balance from a higher APR credit card, or paying down a large purchase during the promotional period. If you need to transfer a balance or prefer a card which offers 0% on purchases, the <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/retire-your-credit-card-debt-with-citi-simplicity-card">Citi Simplicity</a> offers 21 months of 0% APR. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-0-balance-transfer-credit-cards?ref=seealso">Best 0% APR Credit Cards for Balance Transfers</a>)</p> <p><strong>No sign-up bonus.</strong> Sign-up bonuses vary and even with credit cards that do not charge annual fees, the sign-up bonus can be as much as $100. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-credit-cards-that-offer-bonus-cash-for-sign-up?ref=seealso">Credit Cards that Offer the Most Cash Sign Up Bonuses</a>)</p> <p><strong>Tiered rewards. </strong>The tiered system makes it difficult to understand exactly how much cash back you&rsquo;re receiving. If you spend less than $17,000 in purchases per year, you&rsquo;re better off with a card that either offers bonus rewards in specific categories that you spend a lot in, or a card that offers a straightforward flat rate, like the <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/unlimited-cash-back-the-quicksilver-cash-rewards-credit-card">Capital One QuickSilver Cash Rewards Credit Card</a> which awards 1.5% on all purchases. However, if you do spend more than $17,000, adding the additional $135 on top of the 1.25%, you&rsquo;ll end up with an effective cash back rate of up to 2%.</p> <p><strong>Foreign transaction fee.</strong> The foreign transaction is only 1%, which is low considering many rewards cards charge as much as 3% for foreign purchases. If, however, you frequently use your credit card for foreign purchases, you should instead consider a <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/smarter-security-and-no-foreign-transaction-fees-the-best-credit-cards-to-use-while-on-vacation">card without a foreign transaction fee</a> such as <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-discover-it-card-attractive-cash-back-awards-for-shoppers">Discover it</a> in order to fully maximize the rewards potential.</p> <h2>Who This Card Is Best For</h2> <p>The USAA Active Military World MasterCard is best for military personnel and family members who can take advantage of the military benefits provided, as well as the comfort of working with a card issuer familiar with service members. It is also best for those who prefer the ease of selecting a rewards program without spending categories, and whose spending is primarily domestic.</p> <p><a target="_blank" rel="nofollow" href="http://track.linkoffers.net/a.aspx?foid=14308623&amp;fot=1281&amp;foc=1&amp;fobs=link2"><strong>Click here to learn more and apply for the USAA Active Military World MasterCard today!</strong></a></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/christina-majaski">Christina Majaski</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/usaa-active-military-world-mastercard-custom-benefits">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-2"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-credit-cards-for-military-personnel-and-families">5 Best Credit Cards For Military Personnel and Families</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-gas-and-military-credit-card-usaa-cashback-rewards-plus-american-express">The Best Gas and Military Credit Card: USAA Cashback Rewards Plus American Express</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/rebuilding-credit-military-personnel-should-consider-the-usaa-classic-american-express-credit-card">Rebuilding Credit: Military Personnel Should Consider the USAA Classic American Express Credit Card</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/independence-day-roundup-military-vs-civilian-credit-cards">Independence Day Roundup: Military vs. Civilian Credit Cards</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/usaa-cash-rewards-visa-military-benefits-and-cash-for-spending">USAA Cash Rewards Visa: Military Benefits and Cash for Spending</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Credit Cards military Fri, 13 Nov 2015 20:01:24 +0000 Christina Majaski 1577207 at http://www.wisebread.com Rebuilding Credit: Military Personnel Should Consider the USAA Classic American Express Credit Card http://www.wisebread.com/rebuilding-credit-military-personnel-should-consider-the-usaa-classic-american-express-credit-card <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/rebuilding-credit-military-personnel-should-consider-the-usaa-classic-american-express-credit-card" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/000024035090.jpg" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>If you have had credit problems in the past or are just starting out, it can be difficult qualifying for a credit card that helps you build a good credit rating. Most of the time, consumers have no choice but <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/a-secured-credit-card-can-repair-your-credit-score-heres-how-to-pick-the-best?ref=review">secured credit cards</a>, which require tying up security deposits of at least $250 while you rebuild your credit. (See our <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-secured-credit-cards?ref=review">favorite secured credit cards for rebuilding credit</a>.)</p> <p>However, there are also credit cards, such as the <a rel="nofollow" target="_blank" href="http://track.linkoffers.net/a.aspx?foid=26086821&amp;fot=1280&amp;foc=1&amp;fobs=link1">USAA Classic American Express</a>, for those with less than stellar credit that are unsecured and designed for consumers in the process of building or rebuilding credit. Military personnel and family members whose credit rating falls within the &quot;average&quot; category, and prefer an unsecured card over secured for building credit, should consider the USAA Classic American Express. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-credit-cards-for-people-with-fairaverage-credit?ref=review">Best Credit Cards for Fair/Average Credit</a>)</p> <h2>How This Card Works</h2> <p>Applicants must be a USAA member, open to active or retired military personnel and certain family members. This is a basic card with no rewards, but it offers perks and benefits for military personnel. For example, those on active duty can qualify for a 4% APR and get a rebate for their finance charges.&nbsp;</p> <h2>Other Benefits</h2> <p><strong>Extended warranty.</strong> includes extended warranty for purchases made with the card that extends the manufacturer or U.S. store brand warranty for up to one year.</p> <p><strong>Military benefits.</strong> Receive the same military benefits that USAA offers all cardholders. These benefits include special opportunities to qualify for a 4% APR during deployment, PCS, or active duty. You can also qualify for a rebate of finance charges accrued while you are serving in a qualified military campaign.</p> <p><strong>Chip card.</strong> Provides safer and more secure shopping with your credit card.</p> <p><a target="_blank" href="track.linkoffers.net/a.aspx?foid=26086821&amp;fot=1280&amp;foc=1&amp;fobs=app2"><img width="154" height="50" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/apply-now.png" /></a></p> <h2>Costs</h2> <ul> <li>$35 Annual Fee</li> <li>18.15% to 24.15% variable APR (no option for balance transfer or cash advance)</li> <li>1% Foreign Transaction Fee</li> </ul> <h2>Pros</h2> <p><strong>Rebuild credit without a security deposit.</strong> An unsecured card means there is no security deposit required. You receive a credit card with a line of credit, and when you use your card and make your payments on time, you can build a good credit rating.</p> <p><strong>For average credit. </strong>Average credit ratings often start in the low 600s, often a result of a small credit file or minor credit problems in the past. An average score isn't considered &quot;poor&quot; credit, which is generally in the 500s to low 600s, but approval for unsecured credit cards can be just as difficult.</p> <p><strong>Mid level annual fee.</strong> The annual fee of $35 per year is not low by any means, when compared to other unsecured credit cards. However, it is mid-level among secured cards and can be considered about average. Annual fees with secured cards can be as much as $50 per year, in addition to the security deposit which is often hundreds of dollars.</p> <p><strong>Special military benefits.</strong> Benefits such as special rates specific to your military service can especially come in handy and help you save money while you are repairing your credit.</p> <h2>Cons</h2> <p><strong>No cash advances or balance transfers. </strong>Although cash advances are not generally recommended because of the expense, if you have a balance on a higher APR card, you could potentially save money with a balance transfer. If you prefer a card with these options, they are available with many secured credit cards. USAA's own <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/usaa-secured-card-platinum-mastercard-review?ref=review">Secured Card Platinum Visa</a> offers both cash advances and balance transfers.</p> <p><strong>High APR. </strong>The lowest APR you can qualify for is 18.15%, which is among the highest for credit cards, with even a handful of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-secured-credit-cards-with-low-aprs?ref=review">secured credit cards offering a lower APR</a>. This is less of a disadvantage if you pay your balance in full each month rather than carrying a balance from month to month, because you can avoid paying interest on your purchases. If, however, you consistently carry balances, you should use a card with a lower APR. Secured credit cards such as the <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/first-choice-bank-primor-secured-visa-gold-card-review?ref=review">primor Secured Visa Gold</a> and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/usaa-secured-card-american-express?ref=review">USAA Secured Card American Express</a> allow you to carry a card with an APR that's almost half of the APR on this Classic card.</p> <p><strong>No rewards program or extra perks.</strong> Although it isn't expected, this is a pretty basic card and does not include any rewards programs or extra card perks. The entire purpose is to provide an opportunity to rebuild or build credit with an unsecured credit card. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-credit-cards-for-people-with-fairaverage-credit?ref=review">Best Cards for Average/Fair Credit</a>)</p> <p><strong>American Express card.</strong> Unfortunately, American Express cards are still not as widely accepted as Visa or MasterCard. If you live in a smaller rural area, or travel to countries where Visa and MasterCard are preferred, you could end up facing a great deal of frustration when you attempt to use your credit card. USAA does offer Classic Visa and MasterCards, similar to this card, if you think acceptance might be an issue.</p> <p><strong>Foreign transaction fee. </strong>Although only 1% it is still an extra fee that can add up especially if you frequently travel abroad. Unfortunately, cards without foreign transaction fees are often reserved for higher credit ratings and carry larger annual fees. Your options if you prefer a credit card without a foreign transaction fee are generally one of the Capital One credit cards which occasionally approves average credit ratings, such as <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/unlimited-cash-back-the-quicksilver-cash-rewards-credit-card?ref=review">Capital One QuickSilver Cash Rewards</a>.</p> <h2>Who This Card Is Best For</h2> <p>The USAA Classic American Express is best for military personnel and qualifying family members who are in the process of rebuilding or establishing a good credit rating, and live in an area where American Express cards are commonly accepted. It is one of only a few unsecured credit cards available for people who have &quot;average&quot; credit ratings and might not qualify for other credit cards. Because of the APR, the card is best for those who are diligent in paying balances in full each month.</p> <p><a href="http://track.linkoffers.net/a.aspx?foid=26086821&amp;fot=1280&amp;foc=1&amp;fobs=link2"><strong>Click here to learn more and apply for the USAA Classic American Express Credit Card today!</strong></a></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/christina-majaski">Christina Majaski</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/rebuilding-credit-military-personnel-should-consider-the-usaa-classic-american-express-credit-card">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-3"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-secured-credit-cards">The 5 Best Secured Credit Cards</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-to-rebuild-your-credit-in-8-simple-steps">How to Rebuild Your Credit in 8 Simple Steps</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-surprising-ways-to-negatively-affect-your-credit-score">10 Surprising Ways to Negatively Affect Your Credit Score</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/a-secured-credit-card-can-repair-your-credit-score-heres-how-to-pick-the-best">A Secured Credit Card Can Repair Your Credit Score — Here&#039;s How to Pick the Best</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-credit-cards-for-military-personnel-and-families">5 Best Credit Cards For Military Personnel and Families</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Credit Cards building credit military Fri, 13 Nov 2015 19:58:59 +0000 Christina Majaski 1568658 at http://www.wisebread.com The Best Gas and Military Credit Card: USAA Cashback Rewards Plus American Express http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-gas-and-military-credit-card-usaa-cashback-rewards-plus-american-express <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/the-best-gas-and-military-credit-card-usaa-cashback-rewards-plus-american-express" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/000015473263.jpg" alt="" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>This is one of the newer rewards credit cards added to the USAA family. While some of the other rewards cards have featured a couple disadvantages such as a tiered program based on spending, the <a rel="nofollow" target="_blank" href="http://track.linkoffers.net/a.aspx?foid=26086820&amp;fot=1278&amp;foc=1">USAA Cashback Rewards Plus American Express</a> has handled these issues, resulting in an improved product. Because of the new and improved features, the USAA Cashback Rewards Plus American Express is not only one of the best USAA credit cards available, but one of the best all around rewards cards as well.</p> <h2>Why We Like This Card</h2> <ul> <li>Military Benefits</li> <li>Cashback on gas and military base purchases</li> </ul> <h2>How This Card Works</h2> <p>Earn 5% cash back for gas and military base purchases such as those made at commissaries, exchanges, and shoppettes on base, up to a total of $3,000 in purchases per year. You also earn 2% for grocery store purchases up to $3,000 in purchases per year, and 1% cash back for all other purchases. Once you have reached the annual cap, your purchases in those categories earn 1% cash back for the rest of the year. You can earn an unlimited amount of cash back in the 1% category and your rewards do not expire. You'll receive a rebate of your rewards annually in January, for the cash back earned in the prior year.</p> <h2>Other Benefits</h2> <p><strong>USAA MemberShop.</strong> MemberShop is a free shopping portal online where cardmembers can earn extra rewards with popular retailers such as The Home Depot and Macy's. These rewards and savings opportunities are in addition to the rewards earned when you use your card.</p> <p><strong>Reduced APR.</strong> You can qualify for a reduced APR of 4% for up to 12 months during deployment or PCS on all balances and on existing balances when you enter active military duty. Those who participate in a qualified military campaign such as The Global War on Terrorism or Operation New Dawn, can also receive a rebate of all finance charges accrued during the military campaign. USAA membership also includes qualified experts for assisting with military-related questions and for help preparing for, during, and after deployment.</p> <p><strong>Chip card.</strong> Provides extra protection when you use your credit card. Chip cards are accepted worldwide and often preferred over the standard cards with only the magnetic stripe.</p> <h2>Costs</h2> <ul> <li>$0 Annual Fee</li> <li>12.15% to 26.15% APR</li> <li>3% Balance Transfer Fee (Up to $200 maximum fee)</li> <li>1% Foreign Transaction Fee</li> </ul> <h2><a rel="nofollow" target="_blank" href="http://track.linkoffers.net/a.aspx?foid=26086820&amp;fot=1278&amp;foc=1"><img width="154" height="50" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/apply-now.png" /></a></h2> <h2>Pros</h2> <p><strong>5% cash back for military base purchases. </strong>There are very few cards that award as much as 5% cash back for purchases of any type, except for cards with rotating quarterly categories. Even fewer cards reward extra cash back for purchases made at commissaries, shoppettes, and exchanges, which, for many military members and family who live on base, are their primary stores.</p> <p><strong>5% gas and 2% grocery stores.</strong> Even if you don't frequently shop on base, 5% cash back on gas and 2% on grocery stores purchases are both among the highest cash back rates available for these categories.</p> <p><strong>No rewards tiers.</strong> Unlike the other USAA credit cards, the amount of cash back you earn isn't dependent on how much you spend with your credit card. Regardless of how much you spend per year, you earn 5% cash back on gas and military base purchases, 2% on grocery store purchases, and 1% cash back on all other purchases.</p> <p><strong>Military benefits.</strong> The most significant perks of USAA credit cards are the military benefits which not only help you save money with opportunities for reimbursement of fees and lower APRs, but when you have questions or concerns, you can work with experts who are familiar with your lifestyle and situation. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-credit-cards-for-military-personnel-and-families?ref=review">Best Credit Cards for Military Personnel and Families</a>)</p> <h2>Cons</h2> <p><strong>Annual rebate. </strong>You only receive your cash back once per year in January, for the cash back earned the prior year. While other rewards credit cards allow you to redeem when you reach a certain amount, often as low as $10 or $20, you must accumulate your cash back for the entire year before you receive it.</p> <p><strong>Low limit on bonus categories.</strong> The limit on the 5% cash back categories is $3,000 per year, which only allows approximately $250 per month. If your spending in these categories is regularly more than $3,000 per year, you can earn more cash back with a card that offers a higher limit. For example, the <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/get-cash-back-for-everyday-purchases-with-the-american-express-blue-cash-everyday-card?ref=review">American Express Blue Cash Everyday Card</a> awards 3% for up to $6000 per year in groceries, 2% for gas and department stores (without any limits), and 1% everything else.</p> <p><strong>Foreign transaction fee.</strong> The foreign transaction fee of 1% can become costly if you frequently travel abroad. No annual fee cash back cards which also do not carry foreign transaction fees are rare, and basically include cards like the <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/unlimited-cash-back-the-quicksilver-cash-rewards-credit-card?ref=review">Capital One Quicksilver Card</a> and the <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/new-discover-it-chrome-card-no-fuss-rewards?ref=review">Discover it Chrome</a>. If the majority of your spending falls within the 5% cash back categories, the 1% foreign transaction fee may still be worth carrying, especially if you don't use your card often for foreign purchases.</p> <p><strong>Less accepted American Express.</strong> The American Express brand is still not as commonly accepted by retailers as the Visa and MasterCard brands. This can pose a problem if you live in a smaller area or are deployed to a country that prefers Visa or MasterCard. The <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/barclays-rewards-mastercard-review-a-promising-new-card-from-an-old-bank?ref=review">Barclaycard Rewards MasterCard</a> awards 2x points on gas, groceries, and utilities, and 1x points on all other purchases.</p> <h2>Who This Card Is Best For</h2> <p>Of the USAA rewards credit cards, the USAA Cashback Rewards Plus American Express offers the best opportunity for earning the most cash back on your purchases. It is best for members of the military and their families, who frequently shop the 5% categories, but not significantly more than $3,000 per year. It is also best for those living and traveling in areas where the American Express brand is accepted, and for consumers whose purchases are primarily domestic.</p> <p><a rel="nofollow" target="_blank" href="http://track.linkoffers.net/a.aspx?foid=26086820&amp;fot=1278&amp;foc=1"><strong>Click here to learn more and apply for the USAA Cashback Rewards Plus American Express Card today!</strong></a></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/christina-majaski">Christina Majaski</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-gas-and-military-credit-card-usaa-cashback-rewards-plus-american-express">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-5"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/usaa-secured-card-platinum-mastercard-review">USAA Secured Card&amp;reg; Platinum Visa&amp;reg; Review</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/usaa-secured-card-american-express">USAA Secured Card&amp;reg; American Express&amp;reg;: Military Benefits, Low Fees, and Interest on Your Deposit</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/cashing-in-at-the-supermarket-blue-cash-preferred-card-from-american-express-review">Cashing in at the Supermarket: Blue Cash Preferred Card from American Express Review</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/this-is-how-the-high-cost-of-cheap-gas-hurts-you">This Is How the High Cost of Cheap Gas Hurts You</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-gas-rewards-credit-cards">5 Best Gas Rewards Credit Cards</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Cars and Transportation Credit Cards credit card reviews gas military USAA Fri, 16 Oct 2015 05:14:31 +0000 Christina Majaski 1568600 at http://www.wisebread.com 12 Easy Ways to Manage Your Finances Before, During, and After a Military Deployment http://www.wisebread.com/12-easy-ways-to-manage-your-finances-before-during-and-after-a-military-deployment <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/12-easy-ways-to-manage-your-finances-before-during-and-after-a-military-deployment" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/soldier_holding_baby_000040863136.jpg" alt="Soldier learning to manage finances after military deployment" title="" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="140" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Anyone serving in the armed forces can tell you that returning from a deployment can be just as traumatic in many ways as leaving. Re-finding your role in the family dynamic, returning to the office if you are a reservist with a civilian job, and even readjusting to mundane things like stopping at red lights can be a challenge.</p> <p>One area where it's particularly important to hit the home turf running is finances. A deployment can create both financial challenges and &mdash; potentially &mdash; advantages for a family, but you need to know how to handle them properly to keep the homefront strong. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-credit-cards-for-military-personnel-and-families?ref=seealso">Best Credit Cards for Military Families</a>)</p> <p>I spoke with American Armed Forces Mutual Aid Association Chief Operating Officer Michael Meese about the financial steps military families should take before, during, and after a deployment. AAFMAA provides insurance and other financial services to the US military community.</p> <h2>Before</h2> <p>&quot;First, they need to plan before they go to minimize the challenges when they come back,&quot; Meese says. After a 32-year Army career that involved several deployments, Meese has been able to advise many younger service members on this, including his own son, who served in Afghanistan.</p> <h3>1. Stash Cash in the Savings Deposit Program</h3> <p>Only available to service members deployed in combat zones, this Department of Defense program <a href="http://www.dfas.mil/militarymembers/payentitlements/sdp.html">pays up to 10% interest</a> &mdash; 10 times the going rate for a one-year certificate of deposit. You can't actually start depositing money into this account until you have been deployed, but you should figure out before you go if you have the spare money to take advantage of it, or if you can have part of your pay deposited into it while deployed.</p> <h3>2. Learn What Other Financial Benefits You May Qualify For</h3> <p>The <a href="http://www.defense.gov/specials/Relief_Act_Revision/">Soldiers and Sailors' Civil Relief Act</a> protects your family from eviction during your deployment and limits the interest you pay on your mortgage and some other debts to 6%. Contact creditors in writing to request interest rate reduction, and include a copy of your orders.</p> <h3>3. Buy More Insurance</h3> <p>When Meese's son was deployed to Afghanistan, Meese recommended that his son buy life insurance in addition to the $400,000 that service members are <a href="http://www.military.com/benefits/survivor-benefits/servicemembers-group-life-insurance.html">automatically signed up for</a>. AAFMA has a <a href="http://www.aafmaa.com/DecisionCenter/Tools,FormsResources/Calculateyourinsuranceneeds.aspx">life insurance calculator</a> that helps determine how much coverage you might need.</p> <h3>4. Plan for Your Financial Absence</h3> <p>If you are the person who typically pays the bills, make sure your spouse has a list of monthly bills, passwords to bill pay accounts, etc. If your unit offers a class on reading the monthly <a href="http://www.military.com/deployment/deployment-financial-preparation.html">Leave and Earnings Statement</a> (the military's version of a pay stub) &mdash; both the service member and spouse should take it.</p> <p>Agree together what accounts or credit cards will be used to make what payments, and determine a monthly budget. If you are single, you may have to set all bills on autopay and deputize a family member to keep an eye on things for you. Even if you have Internet access while deployed, Meese warns, it can sometimes be difficult to log into online banking from overseas.</p> <p>Ideally, you can save money while you are deployed by canceling services that you won't use during your absence.</p> <p>&quot;When I deployed, I turned off my cell phone and I called my insurance company and said I'm not driving my vehicle for a year,&quot; Meese says.</p> <h2>During</h2> <p>Depending on the type of deployment, a service member might be kept in the loop via the Internet and phone calls, or may be completely out of touch. So during this time, a lot of the responsibility falls on the spouse or other family members.</p> <h3>6. Monitor Your Leave and Earnings Statements</h3> <p>You should start receiving <a href="http://www.military.com/benefits/military-pay/special-pay/hazardous-duty-incentive-pay.html">hazardous duty incentive pay</a> and a <a href="http://www.dfas.mil/militarymembers/payentitlements/fsa.html">Family Separation Allowance</a> 30 days after you enter a combat zone. You or your deputy at home can check the LES online, and if the extra pay doesn't appear, visit your <a href="https://mypay.dfas.mil/FAQ.htm#ASSISTANCE/CUSTOMER%20SUPPORT">finance office or administrative unit</a> for help.</p> <h3>7. Avoid Overspending</h3> <p>&quot;Families sometimes go into retail therapy when the service member is deployed,&quot; Meese says. It's important to stick to the agreed-upon budget so that the service member doesn't come home to surprise debt.</p> <h3>8. Be Sensitive About Sharing Information</h3> <p>It can be great for a service member to stay involved in day-to-day financial decisions via Skype and other technology &mdash; or it can be a stressful distraction.</p> <p>Meese raises an example of a call a soldier might receive: &quot;The washing machine broke, where should we get the money to do that?&quot;</p> <p>&quot;They may not be in a position to talk about that,&quot; Meese says.</p> <p>For example, while Meese's son was in Afghanistan, his daughter-in-law received a notice from the Internal Revenue Service that the couple owed $2,000 on a past year's tax return. When she spoke to her husband, he was upset about a company member's injury, and she decided not to bring the matter up. She was able to figure out, with help from Meese, that the tax bill was an error, and next time she spoke to her husband, when he was less stressed, she let him know that it was all taken care of.</p> <h2>After</h2> <p>When you finally get home, after hugging your family, it's time to &quot;settle up your finances to make sure you put them back in order, if they got out of order.&quot;</p> <h3>9. Ease Back Into Family Finances</h3> <p>Putting the financial house in order should be a joint project between you and your spouse, not a matter of the returned service member taking over. This tip is more about preserving family harmony than about money.</p> <p>&quot;You can't just jump in and take charge after somebody's been running things very well for six or 12 months,&quot; Meese says.</p> <p>Don't expect that your spouse has made the exact same decisions you would have.</p> <p>&quot;Any two individuals will be different, and may have spent money on things you wouldn't have. That may cause conflict between couples,&quot; Meese says.</p> <h3>10. Get What's Coming to You</h3> <p>While you're overseas, you'll be accruing a $3.50 per day allowance for incidental expenses. You claim this when you return by submitting your travel voucher showing your days overseas, and you'll get your allowance for all the time you were gone as a lump sum.</p> <p>&quot;Some people just fail to do that, and don't get that entitlement, which over a year is well over $1,000,&quot; Meese says. When he returned from his first tour in Bosnia, he used his allowance and other deployment-related funds to take his family to Disneyland.</p> <h3>11. Again, Don't Overspend</h3> <p>&quot;It can be tempting to celebrate your return with dinners out or special gifts,&quot; Military.com warns in an article about <a href="http://www.military.com/spouse/military-deployment/reintegration/returning-to-home-life-after-deployment.html">returning from deployment</a>. After all, between the travel allowance, Savings Deposit Program, and other benefits, you may have a significant amount of cash suddenly available. If you are single, you may not have had to spend any of the pay you drew while overseas.</p> <p>When he took the family to Disney, Meese recalls, &quot;I felt I had this giant largess, and you can blow through that quickly because you feel like it's a huge amount of money.&quot;</p> <p>Meese obviously isn't against taking a celebratory trip, but he urges wise spending: &quot;What we advise service members is, it <em>is</em> a lot of money and it's great to take care of your family. But a good way to do that is to jump start a college fund or make a down payment on a house.&quot;</p> <h3>12. Play Catch Up</h3> <p>If you took advantage of deferred tax return filings, file your taxes now. If the family accrued debt during the deployment, now is the time to pay it off or consolidate it onto a lower interest rate. Continue to check your LES to make sure hazard pay and other allowances stop after you return &mdash; if they don't, you will probably end up having the money taken out of a future paycheck when you're not expecting it.</p> <p>It's understandable that you may not have kept up to date on everything while overseas. Now's the time to make up for that.</p> <p>&quot;It's all part of cleaning up the battlefield,&quot; Meese says.</p> <p><em>Have you ever had to manage the finances while a spouse was deployed?</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/carrie-kirby">Carrie Kirby</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/12-easy-ways-to-manage-your-finances-before-during-and-after-a-military-deployment">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-8"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/7-personal-finance-milestones-every-20-and-30-year-old-should-hit">7 Personal Finance Milestones Every 20 and 30 Year Old Should Hit</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-5-best-pieces-of-financial-wisdom-from-warren-buffett">The 5 Best Pieces of Financial Wisdom From Warren Buffett</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/conspicuous-spending-fading-to-black">Conspicuous Spending: Fading to Black</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/managing-your-short-term-money">Managing Your Short-Term Money</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/americans-savings-rate-up-to-almost-7-who-benefits">Americans&#039; savings rate up to almost 7% - who benefits?</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Personal Finance armed forces deployment military money reserves savings Tue, 18 Aug 2015 13:00:19 +0000 Carrie Kirby 1523214 at http://www.wisebread.com Big List of Military Discounts http://www.wisebread.com/big-list-of-military-discounts <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/big-list-of-military-discounts" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/flag-1450945-small.jpg" alt="flag" title="flag" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="146" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>If you've valiantly served our country, you deserve a break. Catch one with this giant list of military discounts that'll help you keep more of your hard-earned money. (See also: <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/military-members-can-still-utilize-homebuyer-tax-credits" target="_blank">Military Members Can Still Utilize Homebuyer Tax Credits</a>)</p> <h2>24 Hour Fitness</h2> <p>Get in shape with <a href="http://militaryandveteransdiscounts.com/company/24-hour-fitness.html" target="_blank">10% off for active duty, reservists, and spouses</a> at 24 Hour Fitness. Veterans and retirees can work out for free during Memorial Day weekend.</p> <h2>A&amp;W</h2> <p><a href="http://militaryandveteransdiscounts.com/company/a-w.html" target="_blank">Save 10% at participating A&amp;W restaurants</a> with a valid military ID.</p> <h2>A.C. Moore</h2> <p>Crafty military men and women can save <a href="http://militaryandveteransdiscounts.com/company/a-c-moore-arts-crafts.html" target="_blank">10% on their purchases</a> with an active military ID.</p> <h2>Aeropostale</h2> <p>Dress for less with <a href="http://militaryandveteransdiscounts.com/company/aeropostale-military-discount.html" target="_blank">20% off all in-store purchases</a> for members of the military with a valid ID at Aeropostale.</p> <h2>Alamo Car Rental</h2> <p>Veterans with a disabled veterans card or a VA health card can <a href="http://militaryandveteransdiscounts.com/company/alamo-car-rental.html" target="_blank">save 5%-15% on car rentals</a> at Alamo Car Rental.</p> <h2>Amtrak</h2> <p>Ride the rails with a little more cash in your pocket with <a href="http://www.amtrak.com/military-discounts" target="_blank">10% off most Amtrak fares</a> for active-duty military personnel, their spouses, and dependents.</p> <h2>Apple</h2> <p>Apple offers <a href="http://www.apple.com/r/store/government/">special discounts to military personnel and their families</a> who want to purchase Apple products for personal use.</p> <h2>Applebee's</h2> <p>Applebee's offers a <a href="http://www.applebees.com/thankyoumovement" target="_blank">free meal to veterans and active duty military</a> on Veterans Day.</p> <h2>AT&amp;T</h2> <p>Make more calls home while <a href="http://militaryandveteransdiscounts.com/company/at-t.html" target="_blank">saving 15% on your AT&amp;T bill</a>, which is applicable to the entire family plan.</p> <h2>AutoZone</h2> <p>Rev up those engines with a military discount of <a href="http://militaryandveteransdiscounts.com/company/autozone-military-discount.html" target="_blank">5%-10% off purchases at AutoZone</a>.</p> <h2>Banana Republic</h2> <p>Shop 'til you drop on the first Monday of the month with a <a href="http://militaryandveteransdiscounts.com/company/banana-republic.html" target="_blank">10% discount with a valid military ID</a> at Banana Republic.</p> <h2>Best Buy</h2> <p><a href="http://militaryandveteransdiscounts.com/company/best-buy-military-discount.html" target="_blank">Save 10%</a> at participating Best Buy stores with a valid military ID or VA-approved veterans ID card.</p> <h2>Best Western</h2> <p>Best Western offers <a href="http://militaryandveteransdiscounts.com/company/best-western.html" target="_blank">room-rate discounts with a valid military or VA ID</a> at check-in.</p> <h2>Budget Rental Vehicles</h2> <p>Members of the military can <a href="http://militaryandveteransdiscounts.com/company/budget.html" target="_blank">save up to 25% on Budget vehicle rentals</a> with a valid military ID.</p> <h2>Cabela's</h2> <p>Active duty military can <a href="http://militaryandveteransdiscounts.com/company/cabela-s.html" target="_blank">save 10% on in-store purchases at Cabela's</a> with a valid military ID. Veterans receive employee pricing on Veterans Day.</p> <h2>Chase Bank</h2> <p>Chase Bank <a href="http://militaryandveteransdiscounts.com/company/chase-bank.html" target="_blank">offers several benefits to active duty and reservists</a>, including ATM waivers, free safe deposit boxes, and free checking.</p> <h2>Chevy's Fresh Mex</h2> <p>Military men and women in uniform can <a href="http://www.chevys.com/uniformdiscount.aspx" target="_blank">save 20% at Chevy's Fresh Mex</a> restaurants.</p> <h2>Chili's</h2> <p>Military men and women in uniform can <a href="http://militaryandveteransdiscounts.com/company/chilis.html" target="_blank">save 10% at Chili's restaurants</a>.</p> <h2>Costco</h2> <p>New members can <a href="https://costco.sheerid.com/" target="_blank">receive over $50 in savings with verified military status</a> at Costco.</p> <h2>Dairy Queen</h2> <p><a href="http://militaryandveteransdiscounts.com/company/dairy-queen.html" target="_blank">Save 10% at participating Dairy Queens</a> with a valid military ID.</p> <h2>Denny's</h2> <p><a href="http://militaryandveteransdiscounts.com/company/denny-s.html" target="_blank">Save 10%-20% at participating Denny's restaurants</a> with a valid military ID.</p> <h2>Famous Dave's BBQ</h2> <p><a href="http://militaryandveteransdiscounts.com/company/famous-dave-s-bbq.html" target="_blank">Receive 10% off at participating Famous Dave's BBQ</a> locations with a military ID.</p> <h2>Finish Line</h2> <p>Step out in new kicks with <a href="http://militaryandveteransdiscounts.com/company/finish-line.html" target="_blank">20% off at participating Finish Line stores</a>.</p> <h2>Foot Action</h2> <p><a href="http://militaryandveteransdiscounts.com/company/foot-action.html" target="_blank">Score 20% off shoes and apparel at Foot Action</a> with a valid military ID.</p> <h2>Foot Locker</h2> <p>Military personnel can <a href="http://militaryandveteransdiscounts.com/company/foot-locker.html" target="_blank">receive 20% off purchases with a valid military ID</a>. Veterans can save 20% on Veterans Day.</p> <h2>Gap</h2> <p>Active duty personnel, retirees, reservists, and veterans can <a href="http://militaryandveteransdiscounts.com/company/gap.html" target="_blank">save 10% on the first Monday of the month</a> with an ID.</p> <h2>GNC</h2> <p>Do your body good with a <a href="http://militaryandveteransdiscounts.com/company/gnc.html" target="_blank">discount of 10% or more at participating GNC stores</a>.</p> <h2>Gold's Gym</h2> <p><a href="http://militaryandveteransdiscounts.com/company/gold-s-gym.html" target="_blank">Receive a reduced enrollment fee and 20% off monthly dues</a> with a valid military ID at Gold's Gym.</p> <h2>Golden Corral</h2> <p>Active duty service members, retirees, and dependents can <a href="http://militaryandveteransdiscounts.com/company/golden-corral.html" target="_blank">receive 10%-20% off at participating Golden Corral restaurants</a>. Veterans eat free on Veterans Day.</p> <h2>Hanes</h2> <p><a href="http://militaryandveteransdiscounts.com/company/hanes.html" target="_blank">Save 10% with a military ID</a>.</p> <h2>Hardee's</h2> <p>Active duty service members and veterans can <a href="http://militaryandveteransdiscounts.com/company/hardees.html" target="_blank">save 10% at participating Hardee's restaurants</a>.</p> <h2>The Heart Bandits</h2> <p>Anyone serving in the military can save 10% on proposal planning services from <a href="http://www.theheartbandits.com/" target="_blank">The Heart Bandits</a>.</p> <h2>HireAHelper.com</h2> <p>All military service men and women who book moving labor with <a href="http://www.hireahelper.com/" target="_blank">HireAHelper.com</a> over the phone and ask for the military discount will save 5% on services.</p> <h2>Home Depot</h2> <p>Active and reserve military personnel, retired or disabled vets, and their spouses and dependent children can <a href="http://militaryandveteransdiscounts.com/company/home-depot.html" target="_blank">receive 10% off at Home Depot</a>.</p> <h2>Hooters</h2> <p>Hooters restaurants offer <a href="http://militaryandveteransdiscounts.com/company/hooters.html" target="_blank">10% off to active duty military and veterans everyday</a> and free wings on Memorial Day and Veterans Day.</p> <h2>IHOP</h2> <p><a href="http://militaryandveteransdiscounts.com/company/ihop.html" target="_blank">Save 20% at participating IHOP locations</a> with a valid military ID.</p> <h2>Jiffy Lube</h2> <p><a href="http://militaryandveteransdiscounts.com/company/jiffy-lube.html" target="_blank">Save 10% on vehicle maintenance services at Jiffy Lube</a> with a valid military ID.</p> <h2>Johnny Rockets</h2> <p><a href="http://militaryandveteransdiscounts.com/company/johnny-rockets.html" target="_blank">Save 50% off your meal at Johnny Rockets</a> when you dine in uniform.</p> <h2>JustKidsStore.com</h2> <p>Military members with a valid Troop ID can <a href="http://www.justkidsstore.com/military" target="_blank">receive discounts at JustKidsStore.com</a>.</p> <h2>Kmart</h2> <p><a href="http://militaryandveteransdiscounts.com/company/kmart.html" target="_blank">Save 10%</a> at participating Kmart locations.</p> <h2>Man Crates</h2> <p>Military families can <a href="http://www.mancrates.com/military" target="_blank">save 10% on Man Crates care packages</a> with a valid Troop ID.</p> <h2>Regal Entertainment Group</h2> <p><a href="http://www.militarydiscounters.com/blog/index.php/2012/09/06/regal-theatres-military-discount/" target="_blank">Receive a discount on all movie screenings</a> at Regal Theaters after 6 p.m. with a valid military ID.</p> <h2>Overstock.com</h2> <p>Active, retired, and reserve military personnel are <a href="http://www.overstock.com/clubomilitary?tid=ClubOStatic:Mil_Ben" target="_blank">eligible for free Club O membership</a> &mdash; a $19.95 value &mdash; the benefits of which include 5% in Club O Dollars on every purchase and free shipping.</p> <h2>Pantry Paratus</h2> <p><a href="http://pantryparatus.com/" target="_blank">Pantry Paratus</a> offers free shipping on overseas orders to active duty military.</p> <h2>Purific Water USA</h2> <p><a href="http://purificwaterusa.com/" target="_blank">Purific Water USA</a> offers a military discount of 10% off to all active and retired military. Offer valid with a valid military ID.</p> <h2>Tough Mudder</h2> <p>Active and veteran members of the military can save <a href="http://toughmudder.com/discounts/military-discounts/" target="_blank">$10 on Tough Mudder registration</a>, which will be refunded four to six weeks after the event weekend.</p> <h2>Under Armor</h2> <p>Keep the sweat at bay when you're working out with <a href="http://www.underarmour.com/shop/us/en/military-offer?GAN=1&amp;cid=AF%7CTroop%20ID%7CGAN%7CUS&amp;ganlid=A%20Special%20Memorial%20Day%20Gift%20for%20Those%20Who%20Protect%20Our%20House%3A%2015%25%20off%20for%20Veterans%20%26%20Service%20Members.&amp;clickid=0004dedbf8e3a3400aecaae8e1001824" target="_blank">10% off for military members and veterans</a> from Under Armour.</p> <h2>uShip</h2> <p>Active duty, retirees, veterans, and military spouses can <a href="http://www.uship.com/learnmore/troopidlearn.aspx" target="_blank">create free listings and receive other exclusive discounts and promotions</a> on uShip, the online shipping marketplace.</p> <h2>YMCA</h2> <p>Family members of deployed National Guard and reservists, active duty families who live in one of the selected Joint Bases created by the Base Realignment and Closure process, active duty independent personnel and their families as approved by their military service headquarters, and relocated spouses and family members of deployed active duty personnel <a href="http://www.ymcadallas.org/social_responsibility/social_services/military_outreach/" target="_blank">may be eligible for free YMCA memberships</a>.</p> <p>Special thanks to <a href="http://www.troopswap.com/" target="_blank">TroopSwap.com</a> and <a href="http://militaryandveteransdiscounts.com/" target="_blank">Veterans and Military Discounts</a> for providing resources for this list.</p> <p><em>Do you know of more military discounts not listed here? Let us know in the comments below.</em></p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/mikey-rox">Mikey Rox</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/big-list-of-military-discounts">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-4"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/what-you-need-to-know-about-sample-sales">What You Need to Know About Sample Sales</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-things-you-should-never-buy-at-the-dollar-store-and-10-you-should">10 Things You Should Never Buy at the Dollar Store (and 10 You Should)</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/15-things-you-should-buy-at-costco">15 Things You Should Buy at Costco</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/16-amazon-deal-hacks-you-may-not-already-know">16 Amazon Deal Hacks You May Not Already Know</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/101-ways-to-save-money-on-clothes">101 Ways to Save Money on Clothes</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Deals and Coupons Shopping discounts military Tue, 25 Jun 2013 09:36:45 +0000 Mikey Rox 980087 at http://www.wisebread.com Independence Day Roundup: Military vs. Civilian Credit Cards http://www.wisebread.com/independence-day-roundup-military-vs-civilian-credit-cards <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/independence-day-roundup-military-vs-civilian-credit-cards" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/4420214662_05d6ab997c_z.jpg" alt="credit cards" title="credit cards" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="179" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <h3>The Big Players in Military Banking: USAA, Navy Federal, and Pentagon Federal.</h3> <p>There are three big financial institutions serving primarily Department of Defense personnel, as well as many less significant players. These organizations are exclusive to military personnel and relatives, and offer some great benefits not available elsewhere.</p> <p>USAA is the largest financial institution serving primarily military families, with over 7 million members. Navy Federal is the largest credit union in the United States, with over 3 million members. Pentagon Federal is the third largest credit union with nearly 1 million members.</p> <p><img height="260" width="500" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u784/NerdWallet%20military%20card%20issuers%202009.jpg" /></p> <h3>How do the major military credit card offers compare with credit cards available to the civilian population?</h3> <p>There are several classes of credit cards to consider, we&rsquo;ll discuss each one separately. But in summary, one can safely conclude that in certain categories, there are military cards that soundly beat anything civilians can apply for.</p> <h4>Overview</h4> <ul> <li>The most noticeable advantage for team Military is Secured Credit Cards, which are pre-approved credit cards used to help people with poor credit rebuild their credit scores. Civilian banks gouge secured credit card holders with high fees and minimal rewards, but Navy Federal has the lowest fees and it pays out rewards.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>The most noticeable disadvantage for team Military is low APR credit cards. There are many military credit unions to choose from, and we&rsquo;ve listed most of them at the end of this post, but in general you&rsquo;re better off with a local credit union or regional bank.</li> </ul> <h4>Breaking down the numbers</h4> <p>As you can see from the table below*, Navy Federal dominates the field in terms of the best military credit card offers, demonstrating why they are the most popular credit union in the country. Pentagon Federal stands out on the rewards card front with the Cash Back card, which pays 5% on gas and 2% at supermarkets, and PenFed also has decent offerings for low APR cards. USAA is noticeably absent, as are the popular Bank of America Military Banking cards.</p> <p>Additionally, for those who want to show their pride with a specially designated card, there are a lot of options out there. These &ldquo;affinity cards&rdquo; include offerings for the Air Force Academy AOG, Reserve Officers Association, Society of Cost Estimating and Analysis, US Army Warrant Officers, American Society of Military Comptrollers, USO, and the Marine Corps.</p> <p><img height="425" width="500" alt="" src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/u784/NerdWallet%20card%20comparison.jpg" /></p> <h4>The intangibles: Beyond the numbers</h4> <p>Despite being behind the curve in terms of offering the best rewards or lowest APRs, USAA has received great customer satisfaction feedback and has a very loyal customer base.</p> <p>Epinions.com Ratings:</p> <ul> <li>USAA, 4.5/5 stars</li> <li>Navy Federal Credit Union, 4.0/5 stars</li> <li>Pentagon Federal Credit Union, 3.0/5 stars</li> <li>Note that PenFed&rsquo;s negative feedback is mostly related to how difficult it is to get their &ldquo;conservative&rdquo; loan department to approve your mortgage or credit application</li> </ul> <h3>So should you get a military credit card?</h3> <p>We say you should take advantage of your eligibility and do it. Just make sure you do the research first to find out what will best suit your needs. Here are a few of our suggestions:</p> <ul> <li>Consider Navy Federal and Pentagon Federal credit card offers before you decide on a USAA or Bank of America Military Banking offer. In almost all cases, you can get a better card through the two credit unions rather than the two for-profit banks.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Compare the best military offers against the best civilian cards out there before you make a final decision. You can easily do this by searching NerdWallet&rsquo;s <a href="http://www.nerdwallet.com/rewards-credit-cards">rewards credit card</a> or <a href="http://www.nerdwallet.com/low-apr-credit-cards">low apr credit card</a> pages, and selecting both &ldquo;personal&rdquo; and &ldquo;credit union&rdquo; in your credit card search criteria on the upper left hand side.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>You can compare all the military credit card offerings side by side at our <a href="http://www.nerdwallet.com/credit-card/category/Military">military credit cards</a> search page, and rank them either by name, rewards, or APRs. You can also search for your particular branch&rsquo;s affinity card directly in the search box.</li> </ul> <h3>Appendix A: Military credit unions:</h3> <ul> <li>Air Academy Federal Credit Union</li> <li>Air Force Federal Credit Union</li> <li>Andrews Federal Credit Union</li> <li>Army Aviation Center Federal Credit Union</li> <li>Ascend Federal Credit Union (serves Arnold Air Force Base)</li> <li>Barksdale Federal Credit Union</li> <li>Coast Guard Employees Credit Union</li> <li>Dover Federal Credit Union</li> <li>Edwards Federal Credit Union</li> <li>Eglin Federal Credit Union</li> <li>Fort Stewart Federal Credit Union</li> <li>Fort Belvoir Federal Credit Union</li> <li>Fort Bliss Federal Credit Union</li> <li>Fort Bragg Federal Credit Union</li> <li>Fort Campbell Federal Credit Union</li> <li>Fort Lee Federal Credit Union</li> <li>Fort Knox Federal Credit Union</li> <li>Fort Sill Federal Credit Union</li> <li>Hickam Federal Credit Union</li> <li>Huachuca Federal Credit Union</li> <li>Keesler Federal Credit Union</li> <li>Kirtland Federal Credit Union</li> <li>Langley Federal Credit Union</li> <li>MacDill Federal Credit Union</li> <li>Marine Federal Credit Union</li> <li>McCoy Federal Credit Union</li> <li>Navy Federal Credit Union</li> <li>Niagara Falls Air Force Credit Union</li> <li>Pentagon Federal Credit Union</li> <li>Redstone Federal Credit Union</li> <li>Robins Federal Credit Union</li> <li>Sea West Coast Guard Federal Credit Union</li> <li>Tinker Federal Credit Union</li> <li>Travis Federal Credit Union</li> <li>Tyndall Federal Credit Union</li> <li>US Coast Guard Community Credit Union</li> <li>Wright-Patt Credit Union</li> </ul> <h3>Appendix B: Eligibility requirements for the bigger credit unions</h3> <p><strong>USAA</strong></p> <ul> <li>Active, retired and honorably separated officers and enlisted personnel of the U.S. military.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Officer candidates in commissioning programs (Academy, ROTC, OCS/OTS).<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Adult children of USAA members who have or had a USAA auto or property insurance policy.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Widows and widowers of USAA members who have or had a USAA auto or property insurance policy.</li> </ul> <p><strong>Navy Federal Credit Union</strong></p> <ul> <li>All Department of Defense (DoD) uniformed personnel &mdash; Army, Marine Corps, Navy and Air Force, retirees and annuitants<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>All Department of Defense Reservists &mdash; Army, Marine Corps, Navy and Air Force retirees and annuitants<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>All Army and Air National Guard Personnel &mdash; civilian employees, retirees and annuitants<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>All DoD Officer Candidate programs: Midshipmen and cadets at the United States Naval Academy, United States Military Academy, United States Air Force Academy, United States Coast Guard Academy and the United States Merchant Marine Academy; Other Officer Programs<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>U.S. Government employees assigned to DoD installations (including Coast Guard)<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>All DoD civilian employees, including retirees and annuitants<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>DoD contractors assigned to U.S. Government installations<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Family Members, including grandparents, parents, spouses, siblings, grandchildren, children (including adopted and stepchildren) and household members</li> </ul> <p><strong>Pentagon Federal Credit Union</strong></p> <ul> <li>United States Military &amp; Uniformed Services<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>United States Army, Air Force, Coast Guard, Navy, Marines, National Guard, Reserves, Cadets, ROTC<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Member of an Eligible Association, Military Officers Association of America (MOAA), or the Reserve Officers Association (ROA)<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>American Society of Military Comptrollers, Army Warrant Officers Association, AUSA, Coast Guard Auxiliary Association and more...<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>United States Government Employees<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Department of Defense, Department of the Army, and the Department of the Air Force<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Family Member or Housemate<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Immediate family, roommate, legal guardian...<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Employee of an Eligible Place of Business<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>Andersen Air Force Base, DCVA Medical Center - Contractors, Walter Reed Army Medical Center<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>American Red Cross<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>You are eligible to become a member of Pentagon Federal if you are an employee or volunteer of the American Red Cross.<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>National Military Family Association<br /> &nbsp;</li> <li>If you do not fall within our regular field of membership, you can join the National Military Family Association in order to become a member with Pentagon Federal Credit Union.</li> </ul> <p><em>* These numbers are correct as of 07/01/2010, but are displayed for comparison purposes only.</em></p> <div class="field field-type-text field-field-guestpost-blurb"> <div class="field-label">Guest Post Blurb:&nbsp;</div> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <p>Tim Chen of <a href="http://www.nerdwallet.com/">NerdWallet</a> was formerly a hedge fund analyst specializing in credit card networks and technology companies, before becoming a victim of the financial meltdown. NerdWallet is the Kayak for credit card search, and seeks to become the number one source for unbiased online credit card information. Here are more resources from NerdWallet:</p> <ul> <li><a href="http://www.nerdwallet.com/blog/2010/six-wtf-credit-cards/">Six &quot;WTF?&quot; Credit Cards</a></li> <li><a href="http://www.nerdwallet.com/blog/2010/chase-freedom-dont-expect-your-reward-program-to-las/">Chase Freedom: Don't Expect Your Reward Program to Last</a></li> <li><a href="http://www.nerdwallet.com/blog/2010/online-credit-card-information-kinda-sucks/">Online Credit Card Information Kinda Sucks</a></li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/tim-chen">Tim Chen</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/independence-day-roundup-military-vs-civilian-credit-cards">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-5"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/5-best-credit-cards-for-military-personnel-and-families">5 Best Credit Cards For Military Personnel and Families</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/the-best-gas-and-military-credit-card-usaa-cashback-rewards-plus-american-express">The Best Gas and Military Credit Card: USAA Cashback Rewards Plus American Express</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/rebuilding-credit-military-personnel-should-consider-the-usaa-classic-american-express-credit-card">Rebuilding Credit: Military Personnel Should Consider the USAA Classic American Express Credit Card</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/usaa-cash-rewards-visa-military-benefits-and-cash-for-spending">USAA Cash Rewards Visa: Military Benefits and Cash for Spending</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/usaa-active-military-world-mastercard-custom-benefits">USAA Active Military World MasterCard: Custom Benefits</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Credit Cards military Sat, 03 Jul 2010 17:03:00 +0000 Tim Chen 164022 at http://www.wisebread.com 10 Reasons Why Veterans Make Great Employees http://www.wisebread.com/10-reasons-why-veterans-make-great-emloyees <div class="field field-type-filefield field-field-blog-image"> <div class="field-items"> <div class="field-item odd"> <a href="/10-reasons-why-veterans-make-great-emloyees" class="imagecache imagecache-250w imagecache-linked imagecache-250w_linked"><img src="http://wisebread.killeracesmedia.netdna-cdn.com/files/fruganomics/imagecache/250w/blog-images/100_0021.JPG" alt="Korean War Veterans National Memorial" title="Korean War Veterans National Memorial" class="imagecache imagecache-250w" width="250" height="188" /></a> </div> </div> </div> <p>Over the past few years, I have had the privilege of working with military veterans and active duty personnel who anticipate, are in the process, or have already transitioned to the civilian world. Some job descriptions line up with their military credentials: a helicopter pilot making evacuations in Baghdad might find similar work with a law enforcement agency stateside; ditto for a technician who is searching for a mechanic’s position. But others may have incredibly valuable skills that aren’t recognized in the private sector. And, like many job seekers, the language of their current or most recent employers may be misinterpreted by those who screen candidates and make hiring decisions. Based on my experiences with military personnel, here are attributes that veterans often have and that make them great employees. </p> <p><strong>1) Understanding that actions and behaviors reflect on the organization</strong><br />Military personnel, like other public servants, are always under scrutiny whether on a mission, back at the base, or on leave. They seem to understand that everything they do and say reflects on the integrity and reputation of the organization. </p> <p><strong>2) Cross-cultural skills</strong><br />Our military personnel have the opportunity to interact with people of many countries. They might supervise local contract employees on base, conduct medical evacuations, or provide resources in humanitarian missions. Our veterans also have had the opportunity to work alongside others from all over the United States, providing them with knowledge of diverse cultures within our own country.  </p> <p><strong>3) Innovation</strong><br />I get the impression that many hiring managers may not always grasp that veterans may actually be more, rather than less, innovative in their thinking than non-veterans. Just as in the private sector, there are many opportunities for improving processes and results. In some cases, being in the field requires adapting to uncertain or changing circumstances, not being able to receive assistance from back-up teams, which further develops innovative thinking. </p> <p><strong>4) Ability to create something where nothing existed before</strong><br />It took a while for one of my clients to explain to me what implementing “life support” systems in a previously undeveloped area meant. I finally realized that he directed the development of an infrastructure to house, feed, and take care of the basic needs of thousands of people. And, at some point, I understood that his logistical skills consisted not only of accessing supply chain resources but, more significantly, creating the supply chain.  </p> <p><strong>5) Presentation skills</strong> <br />Many veterans, especially those who became officers, have excellent presentation skills. Some have fielded inquiries from Congressional representatives; others have spoken before senior executives (such as a Four-Star General). Delivering accurate information and being clear in meaning are both critical.</p> <p><strong>6) Quick Thinking<br /></strong>Missions and field exercises require leaders to quickly analyze situations, continuously process new and changing information, and make sound decisions. They have often received training on certain techniques, such as maneuvering a helicopter in a dust storm with no visibility, but real-world scenarios with life-or-death consequences can help hone focused thinking aligned with quick action under pressure. </p> <p><strong>7) Desire to re-use and recycle<br /></strong>More than one of my clients has mentioned that he or she was able to conserve resources by sharing inventory (equipment, supplies) with other facilities. In one case, he redistributed parts to sites worldwide; in another, she claimed serviceable but unneeded equipment from a nearby site.  </p> <p><strong>8) Preparedness and flexibility</strong><br />Readiness for deployments or impromptu operations plays a central role in many military job descriptions. Making sure that equipment is operating correctly and that supplies are ready allows responsiveness to organizational needs. And, understanding that uncertainty is the norm yields flexible employees. </p> <p><strong>9) Insight into how their actions impact other people</strong><br />Doing a good job doesn’t mean just getting a good performance review, it means that fellow soldiers are as safe as possible and that critical missions are successful: the cargo plane with military troops is loaded properly; the helicopter that is transporting the critically wounded will respond to pilot controls, etc.</p> <p><strong>10) Demonstrated commitment to the greater good</strong> <br />Our veterans have shown that they have put themselves in danger to protect our freedom. Being able to sacrifice personal reward for greater, collective good is often a valuable asset. </p> <p>There are even more skills, such as project management, purchasing, and team leadership skills, that our veterans possess. I have listed 10 that made the deepest impression on me.  </p> <p><em>Note: I have provided résumé services for veterans and learned about their roles through discussions of their job duties. I am not a veteran.</em> </p> <br /><div id="custom_wisebread_footer"><div id="rss_tagline">This article is from <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/julie-rains">Julie Rains</a> of <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-reasons-why-veterans-make-great-emloyees">Wise Bread</a>, an award-winning personal finance and <a href="http://www.wisebread.com/credit-cards">credit card comparison</a> website. Read more great articles from Wise Bread:</div><div class="view view-similarterms view-id-similarterms view-display-id-block_2 view-dom-id-6"> <div class="view-content"> <div class="item-list"> <ul> <li class="views-row views-row-1 views-row-odd views-row-first"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-resume-mistakes-that-will-hurt-your-job-search">10 Resume Mistakes That Will Hurt Your Job Search</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-2 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/how-not-to-answer-10-of-the-most-common-interview-questions">How NOT TO Answer 10 of the Most Common Interview Questions</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-3 views-row-odd"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/10-words-to-never-use-in-a-job-interview">10 Words to Never Use in a Job Interview</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-4 views-row-even"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/8-crazy-jobs-you-didnt-know-existed">8 Crazy Jobs You Didn&#039;t Know Existed</a></span> </div> </li> <li class="views-row views-row-5 views-row-odd views-row-last"> <div class="views-field-title"> <span class="field-content"><a href="http://www.wisebread.com/6-ways-that-job-you-hate-keeps-you-poor">6 Ways That Job You Hate Keeps You Poor</a></span> </div> </li> </ul> </div> </div> </div> </div><br/></br> Career Building hiring job search military military-to-civilian transitions veterans Tue, 11 Nov 2008 20:02:47 +0000 Julie Rains 2579 at http://www.wisebread.com