Benefits Available For US Merchant Mariners


#41

Do you actually save any money with USAA insurance? I heard their rates are higher compared to many other comparable insurance plans. The “exclusive to military” concept is more likely just another marketing gimmick.

I would bet if it became trendy to hero-worship merchant mariners in a similar fashion as members of the military, it would not be long before some corporation would exploit the trend and offer their goods and/or services exclusively to merchant mariners. Of course there would be plenty of loop holes in the “mariners-only” policy to broaden the customer base as wide as possible.


#42

So you are allowed to have two different US passports?


#43

[QUOTE=salt’n steel;140574]Ok cmjeff - you spent a lot of time on countering my negative opinion on merchant mariners qualifying for a military discount. Everything you wrote is noted and yep, I got your picture salute loud and clear. I see Sweat-n-Grease thanked you, so if someone with his background and service supports veteran or military discounts for those with a MMC and TWIC then I guess I’m way out of line on this whole issue.

To cut this short, I’ve sailed civilian for 23 years - with some similar experiences just like yours. I’ve seen both ends of the spectrum regarding caliber of mariners too. I wasn’t trying to be a asshole, I was just sticking up for what I think is the intended purpose of the discounts, reserved for the men and women who volunteered to serve in uniform, don’t make a whole lot of money and depending on what branch they are in, end up spending months to a year in places where the population hates you no matter what our country is trying to accomplish. If they get a little token of thanks at HD or Lowes or movie theater that I don’t get then in my opinion let them have it. Hell, I make probably as much or more than a flag- ranked officer, have every other month off to do what I want. They sure don’t have that. If there’s another Desert Storm or major sealift that justifies using the MOS, then I am 100% signed on[/QUOTE]

Volunteered being the keyword here. For many individuals, especially the ones I know personally, the military option during their late teens/early twenties, was the best way to secure a future for themselves. They weren’t college material and for the most part their family connections led only to mill or factory jobs. They were seeking something else out of life and the military offered a way for them to embark on their journey.

Don’t we all choose a career path whether by choice or default? I wouldn’t take a military discount because I don’t need one, I’m paid very well but I earn every penny of it. My divorce lawyer told me many years ago, my job at sea alone could be considered “mental-cruelty” for my ex-wife.


#44

[QUOTE=Lookout;141037]Do you actually save any money with USAA insurance? I heard their rates are higher compared to many other comparable insurance plans. The “exclusive to military” concept is more likely just another marketing gimmick.

I would bet if it became trendy to hero-worship merchant mariners in a similar fashion as members of the military, it would not be long before some corporation would exploit the trend and offer their goods and/or services exclusively to merchant mariners. Of course there would be plenty of loop holes in the “mariners-only” policy to broaden the customer base as wide as possible.[/QUOTE]

I have had USAA for many years now. Everytime I call another company for a comparison they are not even close.


#45

Twic card just got me in the precheck line at Alabny airport


#46

Anybody have any luck getting on GOVX.com solely as a mariner? It didn’t look like it was possible and far too automated to allow variance and since I’m a vet I already qualify myself. However, it would be cool if anyone has had luck with this because there really are a ton of discounts from this website.


#47

I was successfull. It took about five minutes to fill it out and I got an email approval the following day.


#48

[QUOTE=GLMASailor;141038]So you are allowed to have two different US passports?[/QUOTE]

Allowed? Not exactly. The brown diplomatic passport is required by Italian Authorities who grant Civil Service Mariners visas to ride USS Mount Whitney, based in Gaeta.

Not sure why. It may have to do with the NATO exercises the old girl participates in as Command Vessel. It is requested for the Civmar thru official channels by MSC.

I heard tell of some genius flashing his brown pp at Immigration and being detained, as he definitely did not look look like a diplomat to the airport Carabinieri.


#49

Belay my last


#50

[QUOTE=Lookout;141037]Do you actually save any money with USAA insurance? I heard their rates are higher compared to many other comparable insurance plans. The “exclusive to military” concept is more likely just another marketing gimmick.

I would bet if it became trendy to hero-worship merchant mariners in a similar fashion as members of the military, it would not be long before some corporation would exploit the trend and offer their goods and/or services exclusively to merchant mariners. Of course there would be plenty of loop holes in the “mariners-only” policy to broaden the customer base as wide as possible.[/QUOTE]

I’ve found them cheaper, and their customer service superior. My father used to work for a fire damage contractor and dealt with all the insurance companies, he found USAA to be superior to all on paying claims, and unlike many others, they won’t drop you if you make a claim.

      • Updated - - -

[QUOTE=GLMASailor;141038]So you are allowed to have two different US passports?[/QUOTE]

If you get an “official” or diplomatic passport (maroon) for official business you also can get the normal blue one for personal travel. You can only use the diplomatic one on authorized, official travel.


#51

[QUOTE=jdcavo;141183]I’ve found them cheaper, and their customer service superior. My father used to work for a fire damage contractor and dealt with all the insurance companies, he found USAA to be superior to all on paying claims, and unlike many others, they won’t drop you if you make a claim.

      • Updated - - -

If you get an “official” or diplomatic passport (maroon) for official business you also can get the normal blue one for personal travel. You can only use the diplomatic one on authorized, official travel.[/QUOTE]

Diplomatic passports for the US are black. Maroon passports are for any other official government travel but do not grant diplomatic immunity. How in the hell can this post be too short???


#52

Not advocating claiming these discounts, just presenting a comprehensive list of military deals:


#53

Any updates on this thread? Anyone find out anything new? I tried to do that GovX thing but couldn’t figure it out. I saw the “Other - Military - Active” option but I didn’t see anywhere where you could explain that you were a Merchant Mariner or upload a copy of a license. It said that it would verify status through some DoD database, which I’m pretty sure I’m not on as just a simple Merchant Mariner (since we’re not at war, technically, and I have yet to be called up as a participant in the MOS program). Anyone else tried this and been successful or unsuccessful? I saw that John and Domer did it, but has anyone else tried?


#54

I was able to successfully apply using the instructions John posted. Use the military other active selection and you’ll then be taken to a page which gives you the option to upload a document or go through DOD verification process. Upload your MMC page 3 and submit. I was approved within 24 hours on the weekend.


#55

Ah! The mystery revealed!


#56

I talked with the customer service people a few weeks ago and they thought it was ok but put me in touch with the CEO… we are still trying to connect.

In the meantime… lots of mariners have been approved through the link I posted… and… I just ordered a sweet FENIX T75 flashlight that I’ve had my eye on for some time… the price was cheaper than I found anywhere else and included the batteries and charger.

It should arrive in a week… I’ll let you guys know when it arrives.


#57

I ordered two new bags for travel off of there. One is a very pricey roller bag that was over 50% off. The 7.95 flat rate shipping is nice on larger items like that as well.


#58

I don’t know if I should kiss you are curse you because I ordered nearly $1000 worth of hunting gear. The total price was about 30% less than cabbalas and one item was 40% cheaper than cheaperthandirt!

Thanks John!!!


#59

I think this thread is starting to go in the same direction as the last thread the owner of this site posted a link to.

One useful piece of information I did find on that other thread was this:

Ok, I just got off the phone with Jim Bury ( USO Welcome Center Director - Jacksonville Intn’l Airport). He informed me that Any member of merchant marine and families are welcome at their facility.

I explained there was a “push” in Tampa for a facility there, and I am in support of, but wanted to have the “backing” of other USO facilities, to show that they (merchant marine) are accepted all over. He told me they were.

Although according to USO headquarters, they are concentrating on support for active duty members, serving in the most harshest condiions (overseas) that they would contact me regarding.

The upshot here is, you ARE welcome, and I hope you and your families use the facilities in appreciation ( as the volunteers use their time ). You are not disrespecting he active/reserve/retired military, the USO volunteers are respecting you.

You can find out more on locations @ http://www.uso.org/Centers/Locate-A-Center.aspx

Also, Mr. Bury will be interviewed by CNN, regarding USO facilities, on Veterans Day.

Hope this helps

Bottom line is if you misrepresent yourself as a military member on active duty using a TWIC or an MMD you have no honor.

If you are entitled to a benefit then use it to your advantage if you know how to without committing fraud.

Thank the next Active or Former Military member you see for your freedom.
Don’t forget to buy phone cards around the holidays especially.
Think about the USO next time you tithe or donate to the Red Cross.
Donate your unused airline miles to the military.

my two cents…


#60

[QUOTE=Slowsailor45;140499]Mariners house in Boston is a great lodging deal for active or retired mariners.
http://marinershouse.org[/QUOTE]

Mariner’s House in Boston is indeed a great deal, close to the USS Constitution, Faneuil Hall, a hundred or so great Italian restaurants, and several all-womens colleges :D.

Strongly recommended at $65/ night.