How to plan your route to all those discounts this Veterans Day

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Ah, Veterans Day.

You’ve changed your profile pic to an old photo from back when you were in (and used to have hair). You’ve casually reminded your significant other that you should be thanked for your service. You’ve blasted out a text message thread to more than 50 of your closest friends who you haven’t talked to since last November.

There’s just one thing left to do: It’s time to plan your route in order to take advantage of all the cheap eats, and discounted swag.

Now, a quick side note for those who think this day is solely reserved for judgemental Facebook rants and guilt-inducing posts about how most of the country didn’t volunteer to serve. For some, they may see Veterans Day as a time to reflect on the costs of military service. For others, it’s a day off and an excuse to drink with your buddies like you’re back in the barracks. And for many of us, it’s an opportunity (and a reminder) to reach out to old friends from way back when, so we can swap stories and enjoy that camaraderie once again.

But, it’s also a day that has become synonymous with discounts and rampant consumerism, and by the beard of Zeus, why the hell shouldn’t we get in on that action?

Task & Purpose proudly presents this brief guide to making the most of this year’s Veterans Day discounts. These discounts are for military veterans, active duty service members, reservists, retirees — basically anyone who served. Additional details on the deals can be found here.

Don't get lost this Veterans Day. Have a plan. Call a battle buddy. Get your discounts and get out.

Don't get lost this Veterans Day. Have a plan. Call a battle buddy. Get your discounts and get out.

Veterans Day 2020

0500: Throw your phone across the room when the alarm goes off. (For Marines, take this time to get up, drink a glass of water and take two to three Ibuprofen to help with the hangover from last night’s birthday ball.)

0800-0900: Now that you’re up and only mildly hungover from the night before, it’s time to figure out your breakfast plans. If you want a star-spangled side with your meal, then consider IHOP, which is offering a free order of red white and blue pancakes with your main dish. There’s Village Inn, which is giving away a free Village Inn Breakfast and a coupon for 20 percent off your next meal between Nov. 12 and 30. If country-style breakfasts are more your thing, there’s Bob Evans, where you can get a free meal from a special menu this Veterans Day.

But, if the idea of sitting in a packed fast-casual diner with a bunch of other folks sporting vaguely moto shirts and hats and hangovers isn’t your idea of a good time, you can swing by Starbucks for a free cup of coffee or Dunkin Donuts for a free donut.

1000: Alright, you’ve eaten and you’re splattered in spangly batter, which means it might be time for a wet nap and a fresh fade. For those of you not on active duty, you probably haven’t gotten a haircut in, well, however long it’s been since you got out. SportClips and Great Clips are offering a free haircut that day — though to Great Clips’ credit they’ll give you a free haircut card so you can come back at a later date. There’s also SmartStyle Hair Salons as well as Hair Cuttery/Bubbles/CIBU which are offering 10 percent off cuts and salon service — with some venues providing curbside cuts.

Related: Everyone is gone on leave and you’re alone at the barracks. What to do…

1100: Now it’s time to start doubling down on those Veterans Day discounts and getting the most bang for your buck. At Target, you can get 10 percent off your entire shopping basket. Those discounts start to edge their way up with Walgreens with 20 percent off, in case you need to shop for any odds and ends. Then there’s Under Armour, which offers 20 percent off year-round, but on Nov. 11 that jumps to 40 percent, so, yeah, now might be the right time for some new gym shorts.

1130-1300: Alright, the time has come for your mid-day Veterans Day feast. So, what’s it going to be, a free meal from a limited menu at Applebee’s, Red Lobster, or Chili’s? Hell, why not do all three. For those who are veterans and Red Robin Royalty members, the chain is offering a free Tavern Double Burger and Bottomless Steak Fries anytime between Nov. 11 and Nov. 30. (You can find a full and extensive list of places to stuff your face this Veterans’ Day here.)

1330-1500: Alright, you’re fat and happy, so a post-lunch nap is probably in order. But if your bed is absolute shit, you can get $100 off select smart beds through Sleep Number.

1500-1700: Rested, fed, but with money to burn thanks to all these dope deals? Well, screw it, buy more discounted stuff, there’s plenty. Samsung is offering a 10 percent discount on smartphones, tablets, wearables, and accessories, plut a $50 certificate and phone case when you buy a new phone. If you feel like jazzing up the house, you can get 25 percent off at Bed Bath and Beyond and 10 percent off at Academy Sports if you’d prefer a foosball table to a bidet. Need a new stroller? BuyBuy Baby is having a 25 percent off sale.

In terms of clothes, there are everyday veterans’ sales at Carhartt for 25 percent, Bonobos, at 20 percent off, and Allen Edmonds with 15 percent off.

And if like many folks you find yourself working from home these days and need to spritz up your spare bedroo— err your office, Office Depot/Office Max has a 25 percent off sale this Veterans Day.

1700: If the military gave out awards for online shopping, you’d be the consumer version of Audie Murphy. But even retail warriors have to eat, so what about dinner? Well, you’ve gone out a lot today, why not make a meal in? But before you hit up the supermarket, you might want to take that jalopy in for a free wash at Autobell Car Wash, Brown Bear Car Wash, or Grace for Vets.

1730: Alright, your car’s washed, and you even carved out time to swing by 7-Eleven for a free cup of coffee or a big gulp of soda while making your daily tobacco run, now it’s time to figure out dinner. Depending on where you are, and what you’re looking to throw together for dinner, there’s Food Lion which is offering 10 percent off, as well as local chains and stores, like Food City Supermarket where you can stag a free entree, two sides, and a roll. Then there’s Basha’s and TOPS Market, where you can get 10 and 11 percent off your purchase, respectively.

With that done, it’s time to head on home — though if you went the “hot dogs, buns, and chips” route and need plates and napkins for a cookout, Dollar General is offering 11 percent off.

And that about wraps it up, though if you’re still itching to max out on discounts you can check out the full list of veteran day deals on the Veterans Affairs blog here.

Related: The Task & Purpose Veterans Day guide to eating as much free food as humanly possible