(November 7, 2017) Honorably discharged veterans will be able to shop online at the tax-free military exchanges beginning Saturday, which is Veterans Day. The exchanges have been adding to their stock in anticipation of the day when as many as 18 million new shoppers will become eligible, according to Military Times.
The benefit does not apply to the brick-and-mortar stores.
The online exchanges have been available only to active-component and reserve-component members, retirees, 100-percent disabled veteran and the dependent family members of those groups.
Tom Shull, the chief executive director of the Army and Air Force Exchange Service, had the idea to expand the benefit to honorably discharged veterans in May 2014. He saw it as an additional benefit to people who served honorably, but not long enough for full retirement. The Defense Department approved it in January.
It will also increase the contributions exchanges make to the morale, welfare and recreation programs in the military, which is based on profits.
To shop, veterans should visit www.vetverify.org(link is external) to verify their eligibility. As of last week, more than 235,000 veterans had been verified. The benefit does not extend to the dependents of the newly eligible shoppers.