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Military Campgrounds

Veteran Access to Military Campgrounds

Veterans now have access to military campgrounds! As of Jan 1, 2020, veterans have been granted access to exchanges, commissaries, and MWR facilities thanks to the Purple Heart and Disabled Veterans Equal Access Act of 2018.

American flag on a military base

What Veterans are Eligible

Qualifying veterans must be a Purple Heart recipient, a former prisoner of war, or have a service-connected disability rating between 0-90%.

Are You Eligible for Base Access

Marine veteran with base access

To find out if you qualify contact your local Veterans Administration or click the links below for more details.

Restrictions Apply

Some amenities will be available based on the discretion of the base commander. If the facilities are already at capacity, they may not be made available to veterans. The Department of Defense does not expect it to be a problem for most areas. According to the Expanded access fact sheet, most areas won’t see much change with MWR usage.

Navy Pilot veteran with base access

What Amenities are Open

Military base access

The following amenities are open to qualifying Veterans

  • Commissary
  • Exchange
  • MWR
  • Bowling
  • Camping
  • Base Clubs
  • Golf Courses
  • Rentals (kayaks, bikes, etc:)

The following amenities MAY be available to qualifying Veterans. Call your local base for more information.

  • Lodging: Cabins, cottages, recreation centers, resorts, and official temporary duty and permanent change of station lodging (on a space-available basis).
  • Movie Theater
  • Pools
  • Fishing
  • Tickets

The following are NOT available to Veterans with base access under the Purple Heart and Disabled Veterans Equal Access Act of 2018.

  • Gyms
  • Libraries
  • Child Care
  • MAC flights
  • Pharmacy
  • USO (This is NOT a military organization)
Military submarine

Military Campground Fees

Military campgrounds are NOT free. Prices are based on the average local campground fees. We’ve stayed at military campgrounds with full hookups ranging in price from $17 a night to $50 a night. High touristy areas may have camping fees can be as much as $100 per night. Thankfully, most average around $22 a night. Each individual campground sets it’s own rates.

Length of Stay

Policies on length of stay will vary by the campground. We have seen military campgrounds with limits of 2 weeks to 6 months.

Reservation Policies

Reservation policies are also set by the individual campgrounds. Many military campgrounds allow active duty to make reservations 12 months ahead of time and retired military 6 months ahead of time. According to the new policy, veterans will fall into the retired military category or a category below them. Each campground will set their own policies.

Veterans with access to commissary and exchange

Military Facility Links

Let us know if you will now gain access to the military bases as a veteran and what facilities you will be using.

Author: Stacy, You, Me & the RV, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED, 2020

21 Comments

  • Avatar

    Lisa Costello

    Thank you so much for making this video.
    My husband is a Marine Corps veteran separated due to injury that occurred during his on duty.
    He just got called by our local VA office and his application was approved.
    They asked him to come in person to finish processing.

    We have loved watching your videos and coming along on your adventures.
    Again , Thank you for making us aware of this new change.

    Lisa and Jim Costello

  • Avatar

    Glen Reed

    I am a Vietnam vet, not retired but with a 100% disabled card from the VA. I think I am already qualified but when I call a military campground I get indefinite answers. How can I overcome this problem. Are there any like kind vets who have been able to get reservations? I have had no problems with access to the PX at Fort Knox so my ID is good. h
    Help!

    • Avatar

      Youmerv

      The campgrounds are just getting the info down to them. So it will take time for them to get all the new rules together. If you are 100% you should have an ID card that allows you access to everything not just MWR and the exchanges. I would go through the VA first to make sure you have the proper ID for your percentage. And then call and start making your reservations based on that ID.

    • Avatar

      Karen Wood

      My husband, Len is a 70% disabled veteran and we were so pleased when we heard about these perks now available to us! We’ll definitely be using the campgrounds, exchanges and commissaries on our travels throughout this beautiful country.

  • Avatar

    Tina

    Phil & Stacy! Thank you! This is great information!! We are currently in the planning stages of taking off on our Full Time RV living journey!! Scott is a Retired Navy Veteran…so this info will come in quite handy as we start pulling together resources!! We are both loving y’alls videos and learning so much we already feel as if we know yall!! <3

    – Tina

    • Avatar

      Youmerv

      If your hearing loss is considered service connected you will qualify. You will need to have a VA ID that states you have a service connected disability. If you dont have one yet use the links provided to find out how to get yours ID that will allow access to military installations.

  • Avatar

    Lali

    There’s an app (iOS, not sure on Android) called “Ultimate US Mil Campgrounds” (developer is William Modesitt) which shows over 260 mil facilities with descriptions of amenities, contact info, prices, etc.

    Allstays also has a “Military FamCamp Campgrounds” app.

    Hope you find them useful! 🙂

  • Avatar

    Brian Agner

    Unfortunately those of us who are not retired and do not have a disability of any kind and served during the cold war do not qualify. I have spent the last couple of weeks researching this stuff and even reached out to a few campgrounds to ‘test the waters’ and they said I do not qualify under the new requirements.

    • Avatar

      Youmerv

      You would need to go through the VA and have a rating even if it is 0. Unfortunately, the bases don’t have the infrastructure to handle all 14 million veterans. I would not qualify based on my military service either. Stacy

  • Avatar

    Curt Schultz

    USAF 1974-1977 flight line hearing loss 10%. I will be defiantly be using this. Would like to see my old base “Keesler”. I did a lot of work there too. Thanks a ton for letting everyone know about this.

  • Avatar

    George Tway

    I am a 6 years USN veteran (1970 through 1976).
    I was diagnosed with hearing loss before discharge.
    Within 10 years I received a 30% disability and my first pair of hearing aids.
    I have always wondered what additional befits are available to me.
    Thank you for showing me how to access these benefits.
    George.

  • Avatar

    Dan Stewart

    Great news, Have been using Lifetime Passes for disabled vets, in Washington and Oregon State Parks, for several years, requirement 30% disability. Now this! Do you have a link that lists military sites across the country. Thanks again DS

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