Military Saves Week: Commissaries support efforts to encourage financial readiness
For more than 150 years, military commissaries have made it their job to provide food and other grocery necessities at the lowest possible prices to service members and their families. It’s no surprise then that the Defense Commissary Agency strongly supports “Military Saves Week,” being held this year Feb. 26 – March 3.
Military Saves is part of the nonprofit organization America Saves, and is a partner in the Department of Defense’s Financial Readiness Campaign. Their goal is to “motivate, support, and encourage military families to save money, reduce debt and build wealth,” according to their website.
Financial planning tools, as well as advice for both military consumers and DOD civilians are featured on the site. Advice ranges from financial planning, to taxes, avoiding scams and even tips on investing. There are real world “saver stories,” essays by service members detailing their financial successes and the techniques they use to stretch their hard-earned paychecks far enough to leave a little in their pockets after all the bills are paid. Families are encouraged to “take the pledge” to develop goals and take action “to save money, reduce debt, and build wealth over time.”
“Military Saves is a great place to learn about financial planning, not only during Military Saves Week, but year-round,” said Tracie Russ, DeCA’s director of sales. “Military families can find them on Facebook and Twitter, as well as through their website and newsletter,” she added.
Shopping at the commissary is an easy way for service members to ensure they are getting the best prices on groceries, and for the savviest commissary shoppers, even greater savings are possible. DeCA works closely with its industry partners – vendors, suppliers and brokers – to offer discounts beyond everyday savings, through promotions and coupon offers.
The Commissary Rewards Card program is one popular example of an easy way to rack up even greater savings in store.
“The Rewards Card allows you to clip manufacturer-provided digital coupons to save additional money on products you buy,” said Marye Dobson, DeCA’s Rewards Card program manager.
Customers can pick up a Rewards Card at any check-out. After registering the card, shoppers can use the available mobile app to “clip” coupons to their card, and redeem them automatically at the register. The coupons are also listed at commissaries.com for those who prefer to use the web.
“Digital coupons are limited in the number available, so checking the coupon selection page frequently is encouraged,” said Dobson.
The commissaries.com website also hosts the Savings Center page for sales flyers with current sales pricing and the Thinking Outside the Box section, which offers quick solutions for dietitian-approved and economical meal options. The Savings Center also has links to information on featured promotional items, commissary store brands, links to other coupons and lots more.
“Military Saves Week is a great opportunity to take stock of your financial goals, and set a path for savings in the future,” said Russ. “Taking advantage of their earned commissary benefit should be near the top of every military consumer’s check list. It really is ‘worth the trip.’”