How to Get a Military ID Card

A military ID card or dependent ID is a valuable card which can unlock a variety of valuable benefits, such as health care through TRICARE, education benefits, and access base facilities, including the commissary, base exchange, rec centers and other support agencies.

Unfortunately, getting a military ID card isn’t always as easy as waltzing onto your local military installation and requesting one. In fact, only certain individuals are eligible to receive a military ID card or dependent ID card. You are usually eligible to receive a military ID if you are a military retiree or are currently in the military (active duty, Guard, Reserve, or Inactive Ready Reserve). Certain dependents are eligible for dependent ID cards as well (see below).


Are you eligible for a military ID card?

What about a veteran ID card? One of the most common questions we receive comes from veterans who are looking to get a veteran ID card which proves their military service. There are many reasons why proof of military service can come in handy – including securing veterans benefits, proof of service for military discounts, or just to show off your military pride. However, if you served in the military and have since separated from, but didn’t retire from the military, you may not be eligible for a military ID card.

In this article we will cover information about some of the forms of military ID that are available, who is eligible to receive one, and alternative forms of identification to prove military service if you are a military veteran who is not eligible for a military ID card.

Military ID Card Eligibility

In general, you must be in the DEERS system to receive a new military ID card. This includes the servicemember (sponsor) and eligible dependents (who must be entered into DEERS by the sponsor). Here are some general rules regarding military ID card eligibility. Check with your local issuing base personnel office more more specific information.

  • Active Duty ID card. You must be on Active Duty military status and be in the DEERS system.
  • Guard/Reserve Military ID Card. You must be in the Guard or Reserves, which may include the Inactive Ready Reserves (IRR).
  • Retiree Military ID Card. You must qualify as a military retiree, which generally means 20 years of active military service, or 20 years in the Guard or Reserves (though age limits may change eligibility requirements for Guard/Reserve retirees). Medically retired servicemembers may also be eligible.
  • Former Military / No longer serving, not retired. There are a few exceptions given to certain veterans who meet the following qualifications: Medal of Honor recipients, 100% disabled veterans, Former members in receipt of retired pay, Transitional Health Care Member (TAMP), and some others. They will receive DD Form 2765.
  • Military Dependent ID Card. These may include, but are not limited to: Lawful spouse, un-remarried surviving spouse, unmarried children (including adopted or stepchildren) who are: under 21 years of age, over 21 but incapable of self-support (documentation is required), over 21 but under 23 who are attending an approved learning institution as a full time student (documentation is required). There are additional eligibility rules for former spouses, dependent parents/in-laws, and certain other cases. Contact your card issuing service for additional information.
  • Veteran ID Card. This is where it gets a little tricky. There is no official DoD issued military veteran ID card. However, the VA medical system may issue ID cards for veterans who are in their system for service connected disability benefits and certain other situations. (see below).

More types of Uniformed Services ID Cards.

How to Get a Replacement Military Dependent ID Card

In addition to being in the DEERS system, you will need at least 2 forms of ID. For more information about where to go, contact your local base personnel office, or visit the Rapids Site Locator (RSL) for ID card requirements and to locate the nearest ID Card Facility/RAPIDS Station based on City, Zip, State or Country.

Veterans ID Cards

department of veterans affairs id cardAs we mentioned above, not all veterans are eligible for a military ID card. But there may be ways you can still prove your military service. Some states, including Virginia, issue state issued veterans ID cards. Some other states may include an endorsement on their state issued driver’s licenses or ID cards. If this is the case, you should be able to get an ID card through your state (note: not all states offer these cards at this time).

The VA also issues a Veterans Identification Card (VIC), which is a photo ID for veterans who are eligible for VA health care. (note: you do not have to have a service-connected disability rating to be eligible for VA health care benefits). The VIC is a photo ID and you will need to qualify in order to be eligible this ID card. Here is more about how to get a Veterans Identification Card from the VA, and VA health care eligibility.

If you do not have access to the above veterans ID card options, you may still be able to prove your military service in other ways.

Your DD 214 Will Prove Military Service

The easiest way to prove your military service without one of the above ID cards is with a DD Form 214, which is the document which serves as your service record. This is issued to all military members when the separate from military service (the military used to issue a wallet sized DD Form 214, but so far as I know, this is no longer the case).

Unfortunately, carrying around a letter size document is inconvenient. One tip we have received from many veterans is to take your DD Form 214 to an office supply store such as Office Depot, Office Max, Fed-Ex/Kinkos, etc. and ask them to shrink the card to a wallet size version and have it laminated. This will give you a wallet sized document that will prove your service.

Note: Your DD Form 214 is one of the most important documents you will receive, so keep good care of it! Here are more details on the DD Form 214, including how to get a new DD 214.

How You Can Get an ID Card to Prove Military Service

Unfortunately a DD Form 214 isn’t a photo ID, it is simply a document. If you are looking for a photo ID or other wallet sized ID to prove your military service, then these may be good options for you:

  • Department of Veterans Affairs ID Card. This ID card is issued to military veterans who are eligible to receive medical care from the VA. Contact your local VA medical center for more information about your eligibility.
  • State Driver’s License. Some state driver’s licenses display a logo or code that denotes military service. Call your state Department of Motor Vehicles, or licensing branch for more information. You will likely need to bring your DD Form 214 to prove your military service. See a full list of states which offer a veterans designation on drivers licenses or state issued ID cards.
  • State or County Veterans ID Card program. Some counties or other communities issue veteran ID cards. These aren’t “official US or state government IDs,” but they may be valuable in the local community, as many restaurants and retailers will extend discounts as a thanks for your service. These cards may also be good for local or county benefits programs, but these vary by locale.
  • Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) Card. Check with your local VFW for eligibility requirements.
  • American Legion membership card. Check with your local American Legion for eligibility requirements.
  • Other service organization ID card. Check with your local military organization for eligibility requirements.

Do you know of any other forms of ID that can be used to prove military service? If so, please contact us. We will add it to the list.

VA ID Card photo source: WikiMedia Commons

Print Friendly
Date published: November 21, 2011. Last updated: November 20, 2014.

Article by

Ryan Guina is the founder and editor of this site. He is a writer, small business owner, and entrepreneur. He served over 6 years on active duty in the USAF and is currently serving in the IL Air National Guard. He also writes about money management, small business, and career topics at Cash Money Life. You can also see his profile on Google.


  1. William P. Turczynski says

    I’m a veteran and looking into getting a ID card and found this site: which issue a card w/wo a picture for a fee. You mail or FAX a copy of you DD214 and either mail a picture or attach it after the FAXing. It mentions a “Aspyr Media” at the end of the process. This is a company that ports Windows games for the Mac! What are they doing issuing ID cards? The DD214 contains much info like your full SS# for a starter.

    • says

      William, this is *NOT* an official veterans ID card issued by the government and it is extremely unlikely this would be recognized in any official capacity. It may be good enough to receive a discount from a restaurant or retail store, but since it is not an official government card, it is just as likely to be turned down. With the right equipment, anyone could make a similar ID card. I highly recommend caution before giving any personal identification to a non-government organization.

      Thanks for sharing this with the community.

      • Aiona says

        I’m trying to figure out if my father would be eligible for a military ID or not.He was honorably discharged when he served in Hawaii.He did not retire from the military,just served for 2ys I think.Or any type of benefits greatly appreciate any type of info.

        • says

          If your father served two years, then he likely would not be eligible for a military-issued ID card. He may, however, be eligible for a VA issued ID card, or a veterans designation on his driver’s license, provided he lives in a state which issues ID cards with a veterans designation. We have links to those resources within this article.

          He may also be eligible for various veterans benefits. These vary by individual, so the best thing for him to do would be to visit with a veterans affairs office at his county or state, or with the VA. He can visit his state website or for more information.

    • Mister IDCard says

      I have sent a link to that website to the VA for investigation. They may be legit, but I have a sneaking suspicion that they are not authorized IDs. I am also contacting DMDC, the people whom are in charge of all military IDs for verification. No organization should charge a veteran for an ID card. This sounds REALLY fishy, as in, identity theft fishy… CAVEAT EMPTOR…

      The VA can issue veterans IDs if you got out with less than 20 years service, please contact them for details on qualifications.

      I work across the hall from our ID card shop at a National Guard Armory. (requirements are the same as active duty or reserve for running the ID card station…)

      • says

        These ARE NOT official ID cards, so always use your judgement before sending personal information, especially if you send your SSN or other info that could be used to steal your identity. Only government entities can issue an official ID card.

  2. Arthur says

    I have taken documents to Staples store and shrunk them down to a small size and then had them sealed in plastic . You will have to be the judge of how small to go because of the legibility of the print. I have never shrunk a DD214 but seems like a good idea to try for easier handling. The Staples scanners do a professional job and the sealing operation. I am not employed by Staples.

  3. Paul says


    Many states are introducing legislation authorizing a “Veteran’s Designation” – typically a “V” on state drivers licenses for this precise reason. South Dakota hopes to see the law passed this upcoming session. Check with your state representative; if it’s not scheduled to be introduced, push for it to be!

    • says

      Paul, I would love for each state to do this. There are a few which do it right now, but I wish it were implemented nationwide. It would be a great way to recognize veterans for their service and give them a quick and easy way to prove their service.

  4. Kenneth Nutter says

    Just a little misunderstanding about veterans ID Cards. I am a 100% service-connected disabiled veteran, and I have been issued to a military ID card. They will enter you into DEERS. The card is Tan. Additionaly, all of my dependents (Spouse, and children up to 21 – or 23 if attending school) are issued regular Military Dependent ID cards.

    100% service connected disability ID Cards are identical to retrired cards except: they are tan in color (not blue); and they only allow for use of the Exchange, Commissary, and MWR (NOT MEDICAL).

  5. Dennis M Tapp says

    Can I get a Veteran ID card if I served in the army from June 61 to June 64. I was told I cannot because I did not serve during a war. Is this true?

    • says

      Dennis, the US government does not issue veteran ID cards, with the exception of retiree cards and VA issued ID cards. The VA only issues ID cards based on service connected disability ratings, it has nothing to do with serving during a period of war.

      Note, that some counties offer veterans ID card for local use, and some states add a military service recognition on their state driver’s licenses.

      I hope this is helpful, and thanks for your service!

      • Carlos says


        Why is it that service connect veterans are not allowed access to a military base? If VA are so retricted to service connection only.

          • says

            Carlos, It’s military policy to limit base access to those with active, retiree, and dependent ID cards. My guess is if they opened the gates to everyone with a VA issued service connected disability card, they would have too many people coming on base. In addition, those with VA disability cards aren’t always eligible for most base services, such as the Commissary, base exchange, etc., so there wouldn’t really be anything they could do once they were on base. In the end, I’m sure it all comes down to budgets, as giving vets with service connected disabilities the same benefits as military members would cost a fortune.

  6. m coulbourne says

    whom they please. and turn other Vets down.

    ecuses,ecuses they have,leaving it up to the mngr. All Vets are Vets, and none is
    any better than the other. ALSO, the DD214 should be good enough proof, No
    ID required other than that. Only on certain days, is boloney. retired or not is
    boloney, reserve or not, in combat or not, what else can they come up with to get
    out of giving Any vet the well deserved 10% discount ???? Vets should be mad

    • sondralb says

      I have worked at LOWES for some time. In our store and know that several all around honor vet cards. I have a military family; father, hubby, son, sister, nephew, niece. I actually honor any id that is military even if it’s not on the id sheet. Alot of times I see vet hats and inform the customer of our 10% off. Vet’s and military should ALWAYS ask if there is a discount. We just got back from vacation with our son & his gf. I was shoked at the discounts they give. Just about all places in Gatlinburg give a 10-30% off. Ripleys charges only 5$ for their military. Email the corp office of LOWES and I am sure you would get a positive responds and present it when you go to LOWES.

  7. m coulbourne says

    Furthermore, My father served in Combat in Vietnam, and died from his injuries
    there. My stepfather was in Combat in Korea , my other relatives were in Combat
    in places like Iwo Jima, and other Hellholes in WW2 . I served active Duty with
    a Honorable Discharge too, so I Dare these stores to Deny me my well deserved
    measily 10% Discount. This mistake just cost Lowes several thousand dollars
    in sales I was ready to pay them, so, they hurt noone but themselves………….

    • Dave says

      The stores are nice enough to give military discounts. Who they give them too, or if they give them at all is their business. If it is measly—then quit bellyaching. The releases I’ve read says both stores give the 10% discount to active duty and retired–which I am. I appreciate their generosity and tell them that at every purchase as they don’t have to do it. Go dare someone who really cares an honor discharge is a dime a dozen. I have a long list of ancestors who served also, but I am not them and don’t expect to be rewarded for their accomplishments. For that look to obama who wants everybody rewarded equally regardless of how they perform.

  8. Mike Ogazon says

    If you served 6 months active duty reserves 1963 to 1969…and have a DD214…
    1)are you a veteran elegible to be buried in a military cemetary…ie Calverton…LI, NY…

  9. blanketjackson says

    sorry folks. the only people eligible for military id cards are active duty, dependents, and 100% disabled vets. having served, wartime or peacetime is just not enough to be awarded benefits afforded to the aforementioned. while your service to this country is greatly appreciated, our government just doesn’t issue id cards to recognize service. as far as commissary, exchange, and mrw privileges go, it should be reserved only for the aforementioned. if you wanted to retain those bennies, you should have stayed in. can you imagine the nightmarish hell that the posts and bases would have to go through to clear half of this country for admittance onto military installations? we’d all be complaining about the outrageous military budget expenditures.

    • Carlos says

      What military budget? VA already issues VA ID cards. All active service and former members are loaded in the DEERS programs. So again what budget? Thats an excuse the government gives. The fact is there are far more vets living too far from a military base then what the government want to say. Another thing according this article, Vet ID cards are retricted for service connect vets. So where is the expenditure? The government just spent countless of hours enrolling vets in their ebenefits. That was a waste of funds.

  10. says

    I served from 1981 to 1994, desert storm era, I wanted to do 20 years but was forced to take the ssb option. I was deemed 10 percent disabled but feel i should be 100 percent mentally disable, Id like to know what im entitled to if anything. I have a honorable discharge. Is there money I can apply for or anything else that im missing? Please respond Thanks. 13 years active duty in the army deserves something dont you think??

    • says

      Roland, You will need to contact the VA about your disability claim. If you believe it was made in error, then you can file a new claim or apply to have your claim upgraded.

      You may also be eligible for additional benefits, however, eligibility for various programs depends on your unique situation. It is recommended you meet with a VA benefits counselor to go over your military and veterans file to determine benefits eligibility.

      Best of luck, and thanks for your service.

  11. Donnie Freeman says

    I purchased a dishwasher at Lowe’s last week that was already 10% off. I asked the manager if they gave veterans discounts and she asked for one of the cards. Of course I didn’t have one but she knew to ask for my DD214. I went home and got it and she gave me an additional 10% off without blinking. At checkout, the salesman said I could get an additional 5% off if I used a Lowe’s card with a total of 25% off. I applied for the card right then. He said I should see the additional 5% when my statement comes. We’ll see. Additionally, our governor just signed law to get veterans ID on license in LA. It starts in Aug. The rest of nation should follow.

    • says

      Thanks for sharing, Donnie. More and more states are adding a veteran’s ID on licenses. I hope it is done across the nation, as it would be a good way for veterans to prove their military service!

  12. James Copeland says

    Are there any updates on the
    U.S. Veteran Compensation Programs (veteranprograms[dot]com)
    on Veteran ID Cards to replace your DD214?

    • says

      James, This quote is directly from their site:

      Note: The Veteran ID Card produced by USVCP is not an official State or Federal government ID card. The Veteran ID Card is produced and managed exclusively by USVCP and used by USVCP members primarily for programs and services sponsored by USVCP. The Veteran ID Card is not to be used for official military business.

      Basically, this is a vanity/discount card they have created. You may find that it works some places, but it is not an official ID card, and there is the risk of sending away your SSN and other personal information. In my opinion, the risks are not worth any potential rewards. I do not endorse this card and would not recommend it based on the information I read on their website.

  13. Dave M says

    The Veteran ID Card produced by USVCP seems to be bogas, I sent in my form filled out, with a photo and a check plus a copy of my discharge papers and to date I have received nothing, even after many emails to them. I have contacted the Texas Attorney generals office and filed a complaint and with the Arizona attorney generals off as well. I am looking into filing a compalint with the FBI for cyber crime

  14. Daniel G says

    I did not make it through Marine Corps boot camp. I was injuried in boot camp and after surgery was medically discharged. This is back in 2003 and I have been going back in forth about whether I am considered a vet or not. I have a General under Honorable conditions discharge. Am I considered a veteran? Not looking to just reap the benefits from this just would like a clear anwser.

    • says

      Daniel, I haven’t been able to find a firm legal definition of a military veteran. There are several definitions in regard to benefits eligibility, such as the VA loan, GI Bill, etc. For example, to qualify for the VA Loan, you would have needed to have served 181 days on active duty, not including training time, unless you were discharged with a service-connected disability.

      The US government also gives a Veteran’s Preference for Federal Jobs. Part of their definition includes the following: hose honorably separated veterans who 1) qualify as disabled veterans because they have served on active duty in the Armed Forces at any time and have a present service-connected disability or are receiving compensation, disability retirement benefits, or pension from the military or the Department of Veterans Affairs; or 2) are Purple Heart recipients.

      in short, I don’t have a firm answer for you. Sorry I couldn’t give you a better answer.

  15. Cal says

    My fiance retired after 21 year in the Army. He has is DD214 but how would he get an actual retired military ID card?

  16. Ed L says

    I have membership in Amvets (life), Army Navy Club (life),American Legion and
    VFW. I have the Military designation on my drivers license and my DD214.
    I have been refused any discount at three different Lowes stores because I don’t have a VA issued card. I was told corporate says all the other forms are to easy to fake and they won’t honor them. That is their business and they can honor or reject as they see fit. This is my experience with their program.

  17. Victor says

    I was wondering once i get issued my military id from the VA, is it possible to get my wife a military dependant id?

    • says

      Hi Victor, the VA doesn’t issue military ID cards. If you are still in the military, you can get an ID card issued from Pass and ID. If your wife is in the DEERS system, she can get a dependent ID card. If you are no longer in the service and are eligible for VA health care, then you can get an ID card issued by the VA. You wife would not be eligible for one of these ID cards unless she too is eligible for VA health care. I hope this helps. Best of luck, and thanks for your service.

  18. rodney groves says

    I have a wallet size laminated DD214 that was issued to me upon separation by the US Army. I showed it to a guy down at the VA who told me that he had never seen them wallet sized and laminated before and basically accused me of making it myself. Mine was issued at Ft. Lewis, Washington in 1971, Can you tell me what years they issued them and what year they discontinued them?

    • says

      Rodney, I have heard several other veterans mention they were issued a laminated DD 214 upon separation from the service. I don’t know the years this was done, and it may have been done at a branch or even base level instead of DoD wide. I have also heard of people doing it in recent years as a way to show proof of service. It isn’t a photo ID, however, but it does show you served. Thanks for your service!

      • rodney groves says

        Thanks Ryan. I just wanted to show that guy at the V.A. that it is legitimate Army issue. It was made by Morley studios, I presume the one in Portland, Oregon, and given to me at Ft. Lewis, Washington when I came back from Korea. I am wrestling a bit with the V.A. now over my healthcare benefits. They have discontinued them because of that 2003 Veterans Disability Act that requires veterans to qualify based on income, if they did not get into the healthcare program prior to December 2003. It seems that I missed the cutoff by about $1200 in my annual household income. I am taking some new info to the V.A. eligibility office tomorrow that shows nearly $4500 in medical expenses for the year. I am hoping that will satisfy them and that they will reinstate my healthcare benefits.

  19. Kirk says

    I served in the Illinois Army National Guard from 1987 to 1995. Other than my DD214 is there anything else I can use to prove my service? I still have my military ID from that time and have used that in the past to prove my service.

  20. oscar cepeda says

    I served in U S M C from 1976 to 1980 active, inactive reserves from 1980 to 1982. I did recieve an Honorable Discharge. I have never use any of my G I Benefits mainly because I had gotten a good job working for AT&T. After working 30 years for AT&T, I retired and move out of state, I’m now living in Texas and people asked if I have ever served in the armed forces. I tell them I was in the Marines and they ask if I have an I D . I do not have one, Am I entitle to have one? If so, how do I go about to get one?

  21. Jim Campbell says

    I was active 6/64 until 6/67 in the regular army. I was in France and Germany. I have always thought I was a veteran, then the Home Depot thing came up as I was buying an appliance the sales person asked about my statis as a vet. They didn’t go for the 214 and since then I have changed my statis to “not real military” as it doesn’t count now. As I learned about the real Army after I was in, I learned a lot after I left. I am glad I am out with minimum damage that they wouldn’t believe.

  22. stan says

    Spent 6 years in the USAF and was Honorable discharged. Have no service connected disability and cannot get a VA id card. Home Depot will not except a DD214 as other stores will not. On Veterans day I cannot get most discounts open to vets and at stores that offer all year round discounts most will not accept a DD214. Home Depot even told me today they do not accept the NEW Florida drivers license with the V emblem in blue showing your veteran status. So if I where to visit the local VA clinic any chance I could get an ID card as some of my fellow vets without disabilities have in the past or have the rules changed?

  23. Bob says

    I was given a wallet-size DD-217N [yes, DD-217] form upon separation from USN.
    It is not laminated. And I do not know anyone else who received this form with an
    honorable discharge. Also received my DD-214 at the same time.

  24. Sherry Pritchard says

    I would like to know if you are a spouse of a Navy Vet.( which died) and are over the age of 57 and remarry do you lose your Navy Base I.D. card?? I still receive my DIC check and ChampVa. HealthCare. I went to renew my I.D. card today and was told it could NOT be renewed!!! That I could no longer use the Navy Base! Please clear this up for me. Thank you!!

  25. sheila wilson says

    Could someone that has served only 6 years in National reserve, get a veterans id card, now that this person is retired?

    Also I have a son station at Ft. Bragg which is near our home, do they still let parents of soldiers get military ids, it would benefit while visiting base weekly, also to buy him items on base.

    • says

      Hello Sheila, Someone who served in the Reserves or National Guard for 6 years would generally be considered a veteran, but not retired (unless they were medically retired). They would only be eligible for a military ID card if they were retired. Otherwise, they would not be eligible for a military ID card. They may be eligible for an ID card from the VA or a drivers license or other ID card with a veterans designation, as described in this article.

      Military bases do not issue military ID cards to parents of service members, unless the parents are considered legal dependents. You may possibly be able to get a day pass to the base if your son sponsors you onto base. However, you would not be able to use most base facilities unless your son sponsors it. Base shopping is generally reserved for military members. However, he may be able to buy something for you. My recommendation is to speak with him or the base pass & ID office for more specific information.

  26. Mike says

    Did the USVCP card thing. In about 2 weeks got a nice looking laminated card with my info and pic (I sent pic and DD214). Has my branch of service and the numbers of veteran service organizations on the back. No SS# or other info that can compromise my (credit) identity is listed on the card. Card does state it is “NOT OFFICIAL FOR MILITARY OR GOVT BUSINESS”. So you can’t get back on base or anything like that. However, it also states that military service WAS verified by the company by DD 214, DD256 or other military documents. I was skeptical at first but I have presented the card to various merchants ( I live in NY) and have gotten whatever military discount was offered-no questions asked. Even on vacation, I was in Hawaii with the fam and my card was recognized by a host of merchants. I even had a manager of a tour company ask me where I got the card because he, like many of us, never had a convenient way of proving his prior military service. NYS will FINALLY have a drivers license veterans endorsement, but not until the end of this year (2013) and I wanted something NOW. It was a one time fee of $19 bucks, no renewal and they didn’t/haven’t tried to sell me anything. Your experience my be different from mine but I’m glad I got it. OH last thing, has a verification service where you check to see if the card holder is legit. I tried it on MYSELF w/0 the company knowing it was actually me and it worked perfectly. Got a verification message to the # I provided of my name, military service branch and type of discharge (Honorable). Again, your mileage may vary but for $19 bucks I couldn’t be happier.

  27. christopher fils says

    Hey Ryan. I’m a 28 year old male who plans on joining the us navy in june of this year. I’m also married but, a situation happened with my wife that landed her in prison a stint, it’s an assualt charge. My question to you is will she still be able to attain a military ID card and live on base with me??

  28. says


    I am a Vietnam era veteran who was uninterested in anything when I was discharged from St. Albans Naval Hospital and just “walked away” and did not look back.

    I will look into what you have afforded us all here. This information is “news to me” and I thank you for it.
    Lieutenant Frederick Georges
    N.S.V.F.A./ Orleans Fire and Rescue-Retired

  29. Gwendolyn Sidener says

    I would like to know if I can still use my ID card. My previous husband retired from the military after 20 yrs. Eventually he came down with Myasthenia Gravis and ALS.
    He passed away, I have remarried, and am still eligible to receive his VA pension. and I still have my ID card, but I don’t know if I can still use it for the PX and Commissary, and wonder can I have it renewed when it expires?

  30. James Lyons says


    I was a 1st Lieutenant in the army reserve 20 years ago. To the best of my knowledge I am still a member of the “ready reserve”. As an IRR designee would I be elegible for any type of ID card. The reason for asking is that I’m planning on taking my kids to Disneyland and they have some tremendous discounts for the military. Thanks for your response

  31. Miriam Olin says

    Hi Ryan, you seem like an expert! Just read your above article and learned a lot, thanks. I received an Uncharacterized Seperation in 1994 and am wondering if I qualify for ANY benefits. Specifically medical but also, I travel often for months at a time and thought it might be nice to get an ID card so I can go on base to the PX – what are my options, do you know? Each time I call VA or DOD I just get the run around … thanks in advance.


  32. Scott Parks says

    Thanks Ryan for the forum and all the good information. I served in Bamberg, Germany from 1984 to 1986. My wife and I was planning a self-guided tour of Germany this fall and I was hoping to get back on base just to revisit and show her where I spent two years of my life but it sounds like we will not be able to get on base. We will have to be content with looking at it from the outside. Once again, many thanks for the job you are doing.

  33. robert williams says


  34. John Campbell says

    I have a Verterians VA card for service in Vietnam and have been confirmed I have PTSD from servive in Laos. What is the differance with a VA card which has service under the picture and one that does not?

  35. Cindy says

    If you served at least 90 days active duty you could be eligible for VA medical benefits. If you are a certain percent service connected disabled all your care and medications are free. If not, then it’s based on your income. They have you fill out a means test every year to see if you qualify. It’s pretty easy to qualify and your doctor visit copays will be around $20 and prescriptions around $7. There is more info taken into consideration also like…..did you serve during war time, etc. these factors may help reduce the copays. But to be sure, you should go to, click on veteran services then health care information, scroll down and click on apply for health benefits on the left. I was unaware of this and paid for private insurance and copays for close to twenty years before I found the site. What a waste. Good thing the internet came along. Hopefully I have saved some of you a lot of money. Just keep in mind I accept cash tips. LOL 😉 Oh I almost forgot, once you apply for the health benefit, you just go to the nearest VA Hospital or Clinic and tell them you need an ID card.

  36. Cindy says

    Ramon Ojeda Santos
    Not sure about OPT, but NSC means not service connected. You don’t have a service connected disability. Would guess OPT means option or that you opted out or took a discharge for a disability not considered service connected. Not sure though.

  37. Ronald Wayne Childers says

    I now have 100% service connected disability. I have been sent a letter which states “we are giving you this letter so that you may receive commissary store and exchange privileges from the Armed Forces.

    This is to certify that Ronald W. Childers is an honorably discharged Veteran of the Air Force and receives benefits at the 100% rate. What does this really mean??? And what do I do now?????

    thanks, Wayne Childers

    • says

      Wayne, I recommend contacting your local base pass & ID office for more information regrading getting an ID card. They should also be able to help you understand the benefits you are eligible for. It’s also a good idea to schedule a meeting with your local VA Hospital, Clinic or office as they will be able to walk you through everything you need to know regarding your benefits eligibility. I recommend an in-person visit if possible, because each situation is unique and it’s best to get your information straight from the source. Best of luck, and thanks for your service.

  38. Reuben says

    I served 8 years and I have been told I have 2 years after my EAOS of base/commissary access. What type of military ID is given to me and is my spouse eligible for this card?

    • says

      Hello Reuben. I am not familiar with a rule that gives you 2 years of base and commissary access. You will need to contact your local ID card center or personnel office for more information.

  39. Reuben says

    After some research, it is only in some cases of involuntary separation. Mine was voluntary. I tried…

    • says

      Thanks for the update, Reuben. Military members who are involuntarily separated are sometimes eligible for different benefits, depending on their specific situation. Best of luck with your transition!

  40. carl says

    Hi, I did 1 year and 7 months of military service. I had a really crappy chief who verbally abused his department, in particularly me. Prior to deployment, I had a session with a psychologist to address the issues I was having. She told me to write down how I felt in a journal she gave me. Upon snapping and talking back to the chief, they dropped me off a a remote military base and returned to my home base. They confiscated my journal after I told them that I was writing one. In hindsight, this was a violation of doctor-client privileges. I spent 2 months working at my home base until one day the CO had a word with me. He told me that there’s nothing wrong with me, that I was put in a bad situation with some bad people. He told me that I could go to another boat or get discharged. I chose to get discharged. I ended up with a General discharge under honorable conditions and a code… I forgot what it was…. that one can never reenlist.

    My question is: can I still get a veterans’ card or any kind of card that acknowledges me as a veteran? Most stores I frequent require the Veterans card, an active duty card, or one of those old green cards with a black and white picture of yourself, which I’ve since lost. I would be using it only to get discounts

  41. Sharonn E says

    I’m a disabled and have had a claim in for 23 months. My local VA just finished working claims that were 2 years old and are now working on 1 year old cases.

    My question is this: Since my claim has been in, they (the VA) added that I be considered for 100% totally disabled; that was about a year ago. Does this carry any weight in the final decision since I didn’t ask for the 100%?

    • says

      Generally, the only people eligible for a DoD issued ID card are current military members and retirees. You should be eligible for a VA issued picture ID card.

  42. Sharon Holst says

    I guess I don’t understand why everyone who has served can’t have a military ID indicating their prior service – whether 20 yrs or less, years in Army Reserves, etc. I realize the benefits aren’t there for most of us now but we should still be able to have a military ID – we did serve whether it be 2 yrs or 20 yrs and were honorably discharged.

  43. jack daily says

    I was in the Army Reserves in 1968 and was called into active duty for the Vietnam War by act of Congress. I only had 1 year left on my 6 year total obligation so they decided not to send me to Vietnam and I stayed at Fort Rucker the entire year.
    At the end of my year (July 1969) I was given an honorable discharge and classified as a veteran because of the Act of Congress call up. This was a long time ago and I have no records now.

    How should I go about trying to get proof of my military status for the purpose of seeing if I am eligible for any benefits?

    Thanks for any help.

  44. Sharonn E says

    Hi Jack,

    I’m not sure if you were part of the big push to get veterans/active duty to sign up for the ebenefits website.

    If not call 1-800-827-1000 (or visit your local VA office), they should be able to sign you up. From the website you can print all kinds of letters related to your military service.

    The VA office should be able to print you a letter on the spot or the 1-800 number should be able to send you a letter after confirming some personal information.

  45. Ben Miles says

    I am 100% disabled according to a decision by the VA. A few weeks ago a Veterans administration person came by my house and did some paper work and told me that I should go to the VA hospital in Los Angeles and they would send me to the military installation next door to have a military ID created so I could use the Commissary on base. Could you give me more information regarding this?

Speak Your Mind

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *