Free Meals on Veterans Day

veterans day- Free Food

Dorian sat down next to me at the bar at Hopdoddy’s in Round Rock and ordered a frito burger. Jonny leaned in to confess that that burger wasn’t on the menu anymore but she’d make it for him anyway. That made me smile. Veterans Day is really an opportunity to see how your local businesses appreciate the service of America’s true 1%— the military.

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Veterans Day and the Free Meal

Dorian, like us, was there for the free burger. But before you pass judgment, why shouldn’t we take advantage? It’s a burger, not a car.

The original concept for Veterans Day should never be overlooked or forgotten. It was conceived as a day of remembrance with parades, public celebrations, and a brief suspension of business beginning at 11:00 a.m. I don’t know when it morphed into the day of free meals that it has.

A Military Discount

In recent years, many restaurant chains started showing appreciation for U.S. military personnel (both veterans and active duty) with discounted or free meals in observance of Veterans Day. It’s a small gesture, very much appreciated by all ranks from the highest to the lowest. After all, isn’t the fastest route to the heart through the stomach?

Do you have a military discount, is usually the first question I ask every day of the week—not just today. To my shock and surprise, the answer is usually yes. Many businesses have permanent discounts for the military— some of which are actually very good. You may even remember a few times when yours truly was responsible for initiating a new military discount policy.

The History of Veterans Day

Americans have remembered all those who have worn the uniform on November 11 for the last 98 years. The first Armistice Day, as it was originally called, Veterans Day was celebrated on November 11, 1919– the first anniversary after World War I. At that time, no one conceived there would be a second World War, and Congress passed a resolution in 1926 for an annual observance making November 11 a nationally observed holiday in 1938.

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A Free Lunch and Dinner

They say nothing is ever free and that couldn’t be truer than the burger and ahi tuna salad Steven ate today. I encourage you to go but expect a line everywhere and stipulations like no take-out and whatever you do, don’t forget your active duty ID card. Some establishments offer discounts to family members too… just make sure you ask before ordering.

There was already a line when we arrived at Hopdoddy’s a few minutes after 11, which is when they open for business. You order your food at a window and find a seat. Or you can sit at the bar which is what we did, taking the last two seats.

For Lunch

Steven ordered the Prime Time burger (American grass-fed Kobe beef, brie, arugula, caramelized onions, truffle aioli, steak sauce, and tomato) and I ordered the Greek burger (lamb, feta, arugula, pickled red onions, tzatziki sauce, olive oil, and tomato) as well as a side of fries with the quest. The burgers were a perfect medium-rare, juicy, and filling. We split them down the middle to share. At $12 and $10.50 respectively, I don’t see us coming back here too often.

But Veterans Day was the perfect opportunity to try Hopdoddy’s because his burger was gratis, service, frei… or free in English.

For Dinner

For dinner, we braved the crowd at Brew because he likes their beer. I had to hover over the tables near the bar for 15 minutes before finding a table. Unfortunately, the wait was 40 minutes. But his time the discount was $12.50 off his Ahi Tuna Salad. I ordered the shrimp and quinoa bowl. Both were yummy. And I can’t lie, it’s nice to get a nice dinner and drinks for around $20.

Military Benefits, U.S. Veterans Magazine, and list a few of the best 2017 Veterans Day discounts. Many of which are valid for the weekend and the week of Veterans Days. Google Veterans Day discounts for the military to find many more.

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  1. Stephanie

    Kudos to the company for recognizing the services and sacrifices of our Veterans! This is but a small way of paying our homage to them whereas they lay their life to fight for this country:)

  2. mily jain

    It is not the magnitude of the gesture but the thought behind it that counts.. this way we can honour what the veterans did for all of us!

    1. duffelbagspouse

      So true, its the thought that counts and Veterans like other members of the population feel appreciated for the things they do.

    1. duffelbagspouse

      I do to. I love supporting business that feel they are part of the community they service, especially small business mom and pop shops.

  3. Nicole V

    I think it’s great these discounts are available. The least we can do is offer free food and other services to those that work hard on our behalf!

  4. Katie

    It’s nice to recognize past and current Veterans whenever we can, with a free meal, shared conversation, or special discount. Many people feel they have given everything to be a Veteran, and we enjoy many freedoms that we wouldn’t have without our Veterans. Thanks for the reminders

    1. duffelbagspouse

      Its an honor to serve, its out of the love and appreciation we have for this country that we decided to serve in the first place.

  5. Shubhada Bhide

    Wow! this is really great Idea to recognize people who served our country. It’s really important to remember those people who fought for our Country.

  6. Sophie

    I have a lot of vets in the family so I love it when there are perks for them on this day. I always try to send off a few care packages to soldiers at the base near us, just in case they have no one doing that for them.

    1. duffelbagspouse

      I love sending care packages too. And I love that many schools ave programs that have the kids write letters and cards to deployed troops.

  7. Ithfifi

    I have never heard of free meals on remberance day but I don’t think its a bad nice that they served the burger that was discontinued! Its such an important day here in the UK too, we also have the silence for remembering those fallen or lost during the war.

  8. Ruth I.

    Glad to know that there are establishments and business offering discounted or free meals. I hope we will have it in our country too. The military people deserve it.

  9. Marie

    I’m not American, but it’s lovely to read about Veteran’s Day and how you guys truly appreciate them. Thanks for sharing a brief background and a unique perspective!

  10. Cia Black

    Are home is comprised of 2 veterans, both of e and my husband being the 1st in our family to serve. We both approach veterans day differently, He loves going out looking for the best deals and free meals. He like sthe thanks for your service. Me on the other, don’t understand the thanks or the meals. It may seem odd but I don’t want praises for doing my duty. But we both honor our fellow veterans by visiting graves and reminding our children exactly why this is an important day.

    1. duffelbagspouse

      I hear ya. I spoke to a Veteran yesterday at the gym who feels like you do. It’s probably an eve mix of those that participate and those that don’t. My dad prints out the lists every years, but my mom told me yesterday, they’ve never gone out to eat because he doesn’t like lines.

  11. Jack bransson

    What a great idea, and discount offers sometime comes in handy. Also, It’s very kind of local businesses to offer free meals to veterans.

  12. Jessica Hughes

    I love that many restaurants are giving free meals to veterans on Veteran’s Day and that so many places have a permanent military discount. It is the very least that we can do to show our appreciation for all of the sacrifices these families have made for us.

  13. Lyosha

    I always like reading about veterans day in US. It feels so warm! I live it how people react on it, how deeply they feel about their veterans. It pains to understand how much worse it is where I live.

  14. Cassie

    I love that companies and restaurants do things to support the veterans! It is really important. I fully agree that they deserve the free meal – and even if it was a car – they deserve that too!

  15. Carley Clagg

    Veterans Day offers are a great way to show appreciation to our Veterans! I’m so glad that restaurants take the day to make Veterans feel special.

    1. duffelbagspouse

      So true. I think it also shows they have a lot of built in profit, because nobody would offer free meals to so many if it affected their bottom line, right?

  16. Terri Beavers

    I come from a military family and couldn’t be more appreciative of companies like Hopdoddy’s who offer free meals for our vets. I’ve never eaten there before but if I’m ever in the area of one, I’m going to. I support companies that support our troops.

    1. duffelbagspouse

      Me too Terri, that’s why opportunities like this really put a spotlight on companies that put their money where their mouth is.

  17. Joanna

    It’s very kind of local businesses to offer free meals to veterans for veterans day. They have fought to defend the country and this is at least we can do for them to say thank you.

    1. duffelbagspouse

      Yes, its very appreciative, its just a meal, but its the thought that counts. I also appreciate businesses that hire Vets and military spouses.

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