10 Best Flight Discounts For Veterans

Many airlines offer discounted flights to active military and veterans of the Armed Forces. Unfortunately, as with most discounts, they aren’t always the easiest things to find. To help active military and veterans easily track down the flight discounts they deserve, below are 10 airlines offering the best flight discounts for military personnel.

Jet Blue

Jet Blue offers discounts for both veterans and active military. Veteran Advantage members can save up to 5% off airfare and get 2 free checked bags, and active military and their families can qualify for ‘military class fare’. This removes advance-purchase requirements, which require you to buy tickets a minimum number of days before the flight. Plus, with military class fare, active military can also check up to 5 bags for free.

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United

Active military and their families aboard United flights get up to 5 free checked bags for work-related travel. For all other types of travel, they can still check up to 3 bags for free. Active military also gets free access to the United Club Lounge at the airport, which means free food and drinks. Members of Veteran Advantage are also eligible for discounts which include up to 5% off flights purchased on the United site.

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American Airlines

Similarly, American Airlines offers active military and their families up to 5 free checked bags for work-related trips and up to 3 bags for all other trips. However, they make a point to say that family members not traveling on military orders must still pay standard baggage fees. American Airlines also encourages people to contact them directly to stay updated on all available military discounts.

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Southwest

The only discount that Southwest offers relates to baggage fees. All baggage fees for active-duty military personnel are waived (even if overweight or multiple bags). Veterans can check up to 2 bags for free. There’s also no change fees or cancellation fees for veterans. All other military discounts change depending on availability and flight. To see what discounts are available, they encourage you to call 1-800-I-FLY-SWA for more information.

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Delta

In addition to offering checked baggage discounts (5 when on military orders; 2 for personal travel) to active military and their dependents for both work and personal flights, Delta also offers military discounts on Delta Vacations (package deals, for example). To see all other available discounts for both active military and veterans, you can contact their reservations department.

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Allegiant Air

For active military, their families, and veterans, Allegiant Air offers free checked baggage (up to 3 bags), free over-sized baggage, and 1 free carry-on per passenger. In addition to this, military and veterans also benefit from complimentary seat assignment and 1 pet permitted within the cabin. Allegiant also offers discount flight promo codes from time to time.

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Hawaiian Airlines

For members of the Veteran Advantage Program, Hawaiian Airlines offers 5% off airfares year-round with no exclusions. They also offer 4 complimentary checked bags for military traveling on orders and 2 complimentary checked bags for military traveling on personal business.

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Frontier Airlines

Frontier Airlines offers free checked baggage for active military on duty. Specifically, this means 1 free personal item, 1 free carry-on bag, and 2 free checked bags for any passenger that belongs to the armed forces, reserves, and national guard.

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Alaska Airlines

For both active military and their families, Alaska Airlines offers free checked baggage up to 5 bags, including over-sized baggage (up to 70 pounds). This discount only applies to families of active military if they are also on travel orders. Otherwise, standard baggage fees apply.

Source: Philip Pilosian / Shutterstock.com

Virgin Atlantic

With Virgin Atlantic, you’ll need to first register with the Defence Discount Service to access the official MoD discount service for the Armed Forces. Veterans and current members of the Armed Forces community can redeem discounts on flights going all around the world. However, these discounts are only available for flights departing the UK. MoD discounts are also not available on sale fares and can not be combined with other promotions.

NextNewMedia / Shutterstock.com

8 Historic Canadian Forts That Still Exist Today

Canadian forts offer a glimpse into the past, built over the last two centuries to defend the young country. Nowadays they stand as a testament to the history of Canada and offer visitors a chance to go back in time. Many of these historic forts have been rebuilt time and time again, in order to give visitors access to them. Beautiful views, fun activities and a great lesson in Canadian history await visitors to these eight historic Canadian forts.

8. Fort Rodd Hill National Historic Site, Victoria, British Columbia

This coastal artillery fort was built in the 1890’s, intended to defend Victoria and the Esquimalt Naval Base. The site is adjacent to Fisgard Lighthouse, the first lighthouse on the west coast of Canada. Visitors here have the chance to tour secret bunkers, military command posts, and original 19th-century buildings.

Hear personal stories of soldiers and their families, explore the nearby tide pools and bring a picnic and spend the whole day here. Known for its breathtaking views, the fort overlooks the beautiful coastline and out into the mountains. Open every day except Christmas, most visitors choose to visit the fort and the lighthouse in the same visit.

7. The Citadel National Historic Park, Halifax, Nova Scotia

Fort George is the fortified summit of Citadel Hill, first fortified in 1749, the year when Halifax was founded. A series of four different defensive fortifications have occupied the summit of Citadel Hill. While it was never attacked, the Citadel played an important part in the defense of the Halifax Harbor and its Royal Navy Dockyard. The star-shaped structure offers an incredible view of the city and the harbor.

Visitors should plan on taking a guided tour to learn more about the fort’s history from 1749 through WWII. Make sure to visit the Army Museum while you are here to view over 70,000 artifacts chronicling Atlantic Canada’s military history. Visit in July and be a part of the Great Canadian Backyard Campout where you can set up camp inside the walls of the citadel.

6. Fort Chambly National Historic Site, Chambly, Quebec

This imposing stone structure has been guarding part of one of the largest navigable waterways in North America for more than two centuries. It was first constructed in 1711 to defend the colony and three wooden forts preceded the stone fortification. For many years this fort was the main footing of the defensive chain of fortifications along the Richelieu River, which was the easiest route into New France.

The fort was lost to the British in 1760 in The Conquest of New France, captured by American forces in 1775 and finally restored in 1882 by a citizen of Chambly. Today visitors can see a fully reconstructed version of the fort where they can learn more about New France history and culture.

5. Fort St. James National Historic Site, Fort St. James, British Columbia

It was one of the first permanent fur trading posts in the West, built in 1805-1806 and has been rebuilt a total of four times. Visitors here will get a good look at life in 1896 that includes a fur warehouse, storage facility, trade store, and gardens. It displays the largest group of original wooden buildings representing the fur trade in Canada and the story here revolves around the relationships and interactions between the fur traders and Native Peoples of the region.

Its location on Stuart Lake offers fun for outdoor enthusiasts including hiking, sailing, fishing and mountain biking. Special event days happen throughout the year including Salmon Day with its ‘iron chef’ cook-off and Harvest Day.

Via Salmon Trails | Northwest BC Culture

4. Lower Fort Garry National Historic Site, St. Andrews, Manitoba

The original Fort Garry was destroyed in 1826 by a devastating flood, leading the Hudson’s Bay Company to search for a higher ground to build the next fort. Thus Lower Fort Garry was built, 32km north of the original in 1830. What makes this fort so significant is the fact that Treaty 1 was signed here.

Visit here from May to September when costumed interpreters recreate like at Lower Fort Garry in the early 1850’s. Original buildings and walls, hands-on activities and original-to-era furnishings are all a part of the experiment. Around Halloween, candlelight tours are offered through the fort, along with hot chocolate around a campfire.

Via National Post

3. Fort Malden National Historic Site of Canada, Amherstburg, Ontario

It was formally known as Fort Amherstburg, built in 1795 by Britain in order to ensure the security of British North America against any potential threat of American Invasion. It here where Sir Isaac Brock and Tecumseh met during the War of 1812 to plan the siege of Detroit. Unfortunately, this border fortification was torn down after the War of 1812. The fort was rebuilt and it’s the second structure that survives today.

Ideally located along the Detroit River, visitors here are privy to some true Canadian flora and fauna including sugar maples, swans, and geese. Throughout the year there are special events such as the haunted fort tours during October and Christmas celebrations that show visitors how soldiers over two hundred years ago celebrated the holiday.

Via Ontario’s Southwest

2. Fortress Louisburg, Louisburg, Nova Scotia

The original settlement was made in 1713 by the French and developed over several decades into a thriving center for fishing and trade. Fortified against the threat of British Invasion during the time of empire building, Louisburg was besieged twice before finally being destroyed in the 1760’s. Luckily for visitors, archeologists have reconstructed the fortress as it was in the 18th century.

Today the site features more than a dozen buildings to explore as well as daily demonstrations recreating life at the fort that includes cooking, dancing, music and military drills. This is more than just a fort to explore, with its three 18th-century restaurants as well as a delicious bakery to explore. One of best things about visiting this fortress is the help you are giving the local economy, which has struggled economically with the decline of the North Atlantic fishery.

1. Old Fort Erie, Niagara Falls, Ontario

It is known as Canada’s bloodiest field of battle, due to more than 3,000 troops who lost their lives during the Siege of Fort Erie from August 3rd to September 21st in 1814. The original fort was built in 1764 and was the first British fort to be constructed as part of a network developed after the Treaty of Paris concluded the Seven Years’ War. The fort was first a supply base for British troops, before the War of 1812, a base for troops during the American Revolution and later an important crossing point for the Underground Railroad.

The annual Siege of Fort Erie takes place on the second week of August each year and is most definitely the favorite time to check out this historical fort. It is then that re-enactors from all over North America descend on the fort to re-create the historic battles, complete with plenty of firepower.

The 12 Most Epic Mud Runs

In the past decade more and more people are signing up willingly to crawl through mud pits, climb up rope ladders, jump over fire pits and even get electrocuted, all in the name of having fun and challenging themselves. All over the world mud runs and challenges are taking fitness to a new level and designing obstacle courses that challenge participants both physically and mentally. The twelve mud runs are incredibly fun, challenging and sometimes downright dangerous but they all have one thing in common, once you cross the finish line you are a changed person. Don’t be afraid to get down and dirty at these 12 epic mud runs.

12. Civilian Military Combine

It is one of the most intense runs on this list and although many mud runs feature military-style obstacles, this run actually invites ordinary people to join the ranks for a day. This race is a true test of endurance and fitness, designed by coaches from the CrossFit community, members of the U.S armed forces and USA Triathlon race directors.

The run starts off with “The Pit”, a 7-minute as many reps as possible workout designed to challenge you both physically and mentally. After conquering “The Pit”, a 4 + mile military inspired obstacle course awaits you, through the mud. Prepare to run, walk, jump and slide your way through this incredibly difficult obstacle course. When the mud washes off, the wounds heal and the sore muscles recover; there will only be one thought in your mind- that you conquered one of the world’s toughest mud races.

Via Pintrest

11. Merrell Down and Dirty

It prides itself on having the best mud, black in color, stick to your skin kind of mud and there is no way to avoid getting dirty during this run. Whether you are a beginner or expert, you can participate in one of these two runs, with your choice of distance, either 5km or 10km. One of the benefits for beginners here is that the races are not timed and therefore runners are a little more relaxed than other mud races.

The Down and Dirty takes place in 11 cities across the U.S and both courses feature more than 20 obstacles. Racers can expect challenges such as ladder walls, balance beams, and sandbags to carry. For those extreme mud runners, you can even go barefoot and win special prizes. Racers have to be over 13 years of age and there is plenty of post-race parties to participate in once you have claimed your finisher medal.

Via Mountain Town Magazine

10. Dirty Girl Mud Run

There are more than 40 Dirty Girl Mud Runs across the U.S and this 5km women’s only run promises lots of pink and lots of messy mud, as well as plenty of laughs. This race happens to be untimed and racers are encouraged to only tackle the challenges they are comfortable with. Groups of women come out to this event; as long as you are over 14 years old you can participate.

Obstacles include tunnels, slides, mazes, and nets. This race raises money for Bright Pink, a charity that is dedicated to the prevention and early detection of breast and ovarian cancer in women. Instead of a medal finishers of this race will receive a custom Dirty Girl jewelry charm. As a unique twist, this race reserves 300 free entries per race for cancer survivors.

9. Warrior Dash

It is the largest obstacle race series in the world and has over 50 races on four continents and since it started in 2009 has raised over ten million dollars for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. This series has seen over two million participants around the world and continues to grow each year. The course is tough, designed for those with determination as runner trek through three to four muddy miles of intense obstacles.

Up and down cargo nets, over barricades, down muddy slides, and over flaming fires are just a few examples of what you will face. In the end, the reward is a coveted Viking helmet, a finisher medals that doubles as a bottle opener and of course a stein of beer. Awards are handed out for the best beard and craziest costume. Finish the day off with an epic after party where everyone wears their helmets proudly and parties on.

8. Muddy Buddy Adventure Series

This muddy race began in 1999 and operates across nine cities in the U.S, with three different races to choose from. What makes this race unique is that you must stick together with your buddy at ALL times, in fact, one obstacle requires you to literally hug your partner as you tackle it. The course ranges from three miles to four and a half and offers up eight to ten military like challenges including rope climbs and slides.

The Muddy Buddy Bike and Run is another challenging race in which teams of two people and one mountain bike cover six to seven miles and five obstacles. The third course is perhaps the cutest of them all when little mud runners as young as four years old can participate in four obstacles during a short race. Proceeds from the race benefit the Prostate Cancer Foundation and you can count on being covered head to toe in mud when you cross this finish line.

Via Endurance Sports Florida

7. The Death Race

The name alone should scare most people off from even reading about the death race, never mind participating in it. Created by two Ultra athletes, the Death Race was developed as a way for athletes to test themselves for physically and mentally. Each Death Race is its own brutal challenge, with no two races being alike and can last up to 70 hours. Participants are not told when it starts when it ends, or what it entails, did we mention there is no support along the way either.

Chopping wood, running barefoot, swimming through mud, deep water diving, crawling through caves and many more obstacles await racers at this insane event. The challenges are meant to break you, meant to make you fail and quit at any time. The Death Race may just be the most extreme mud race in the world, and as the motto says “every man dies, but not every man lives”.

Via ThoughtCo

6. Mudderella

It is one of the most widespread mud races with events across the world, in U.S, Canada, Australia and the UK. This is a course designed by women for women, although men are allowed to join teams only if invited by a female team member. Races are five to seven miles long in length and the motto here is to “own your strong”, through 12 to 15 obstacles.

These challenges range from muddy piggy-back rides, slides, mud crawls under barbed wire fences and more. Mudderella prides itself on not being a race and the goal of this event is to complete the course, starting together with your team and finishing together. The reward at the end of this event is a nice cold shower to rinse that mud off and a high energy post-race party complete with food, music, dancing, and beverages. Truly one of the highest energy, uplifting mud runs out there.

Via Pretty Connected

5. Rugged Maniac

It prides itself on having an abundance of obstacles, more per mile than both the Tough Mudder and Warrior Dash, and this race will leave you muddy and exhausted. The course is only 5km long but after facing at least twenty obstacles in that short time you will be ready to hit the showers. Challenges include hanging mud tires to traverse, 100 foot slides, rope nets to climb up and mud pits to crawl through.

Don’t forget about the fires you have to jump over. In addition to the actually race though, this event is full of other activities including a mechanical bull, adult bounce houses, and muddy tug-o-war. The epic after-party is worth sticking around for with plenty of live bands, beer, and food.

Via Legacy Athletic

4. Savage Race

This race is offered twelve times a year, averages more obstacles per mile than any other race and has a race distance of an average of 5.9 miles. 25 obstacles await racers, including the Colossus, the prized jewel of the race. This two-part obstacle stands 43 feet off the ground and combines an enormous quarter pipe ramp with a free fall water slide.

Other challenges include a 50 foot trench filled with mud, tunnels to climb through, cement cinder blocks to carry and a bone-chilling ice dive. Extreme participants can register to go “pro” and compete for awards and cash prices while others can race for fun. This race encourages people of all ages to get involved and kids under 12 can participate in the Savage Junior Race that features 10-12 obstacles over a ½ mile course.

Via afreserve.com

3. Run for Your Lives

If you have a thing for zombies or want to pretend that The Walking Dead is real life, this race is for you. Although technically it’s not a mud race, we had to include it due to the extreme awesomeness it is. At last count this race was offered 23 times across the U.S in 2014 and participants have the option of racing as either a runner or a zombie, full makeup transformation included.

After the year 2014, the race was taken over and is now offered in Australia, Asia and other parts of the world. The race is 5km in total and features numerous obstacles including electric shocks, mazes, and one disgusting blood pit. Runners are equipped with flags and it is the zombie’s job to try and steal the flags before they cross the finish line. We can’t promise you will walk away from this race without blood, dirt and a little zombie guts covering your body.

Via WeekendNotes

2. Spartan Race

This mud race is no joke and has gone international in eight countries. There are three main types of races here, The Sprint which is meant for the beginner racer, is only 3 miles long and features 20 obstacles. If you happen to fail an obstacle along the way through, you will owe 30 burpees before continuing on. The Super race is a bit longer; capping out around 8 miles it features 24 obstacles and is hosted on tougher terrain. The hardest of the three is The Beast, over 12 miles long and more than 30 obstacles.

Think of spear throws, rope climbs, barbed wire crawls, fire jumps and more. What makes this race so interesting is that the courses are constantly changing and the obstacles stay a secret prior to the race. If you really feel like taking on a challenge you can always enter the Ultra Beast, a 26.2 mile marathon mud race that offers no details or maps; just the promise of the ultimate tough race.

1. Tough Mudder

It is perhaps the most well known of all mud races and the 10-12 mile events are held on five continents and have raised over $5 million for the Wounded Warrior Project. The obstacle courses here have been designed by British Special Forces and include 25 military-style obstacles. Expect to swim in icy waters, jump over a four-foot high fire pit, traverse muddy walls and overcome a field of live wire. It is no surprise that only 78% of participants can actually complete the courses laid out.

Tough Mudder participants can be recognized by the signature orange headbands and the sheer amount of mud covering their bodies. If you do happen to be one of the lucky ones who finish, you will be greeted at the finish line with a beer and live music. Awards are handed out in various costume categories such as least clothing, best costume, and best mullet. You can even get a Tough Mudder logo tattooed on your body for just a $70 donation.