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Two Years After Launch of Online Exchange Benefit, Veterans Have Saved More Than $6.6 Million In Sales Tax

Army Veteran Francis Cordero Medina learns how to sign up for tax-free shopping at with help from Exchange Veteran Service Organization/Military Service Organization Outreach Manager Jose Hernandez at the VFW Convention this summer.


In the two years since the Army & Air Force Exchange Service welcomed home all honorably discharged Veterans to, the online shopping benefit continues to make a difference.

Nearly 100,000 Veterans have shopped their Exchange online, saving more than $6.6 million in sales tax since becoming eligible for benefits Nov. 11, 2017.

Corporate Communication Manager Leah Mathews and Veteran Service Organization/Military Service Organization Outreach Manager spread the news about the tax-free shopping for Veterans online through the at the VFW’s annual convention this summer.

“It has been such an honor to serve Veterans again over the last two years,” said Exchange Director/CEO Tom Shull, a Vietnam-era Army Veteran who worked to secure the change in Department of Defense policy to give all honorably discharged Veterans shopping privileges at military exchanges online. “This benefit continues to acknowledge their service and sacrifice while reconnecting these heroes to their military community. They remain Soldiers, Airmen, Sailors, Marines and Coast Guard members for life.”

Word about the online benefit is still spreading. Francis Cordero Medina, who served for 10 years in the Army and now lives near San Juan, Puerto Rico, learned she could shop tax-free with military-exclusive pricing this summer.

“This is a big deal,” said Medina, a member of Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 12057. “I have an additional benefit, just like I had when I was in the service. It’s like I’m still part of it—I’m not forgotten.”

Veterans can determine their eligibility to shop at

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  1. Mildred Johnson on November 6, 2019 at 10:53 pm

    I was glad to see this happen, has been very helpful for those who don’t go out to shop a lot or don’t have a car. Next it would be nice to be able to go to the Commissary one or twice a month. Think it would be a great help for us Vets. And also bring in more money.

    • Steve Smith on November 12, 2019 at 1:30 pm

      Ms. Johnson:

      Thank you for writing to your Exchange Post. We appreciate the comments.

      Let’s keep the conversation going! Who else out there would like to comment on this article? If so, type your thoughts in the comment box and hit enter.

      Oh, c’mon . . . we want to read them!

      Steve Smith
      Editor, The Exchange Post

  2. George E. Marshall on November 7, 2019 at 6:47 pm

    Its so sad that the CEO and the other Exchange executives since over two years only care for those veterans who live in the USA and those who have and APO addresses. Veterans like me who live in a foreign country and have no ties to the Military are treated as if we have some kind of contagious disease. I have many times wrote to them about shipping to a foreign address. But, they keep hiding behind some kind of excuses. They say can’t because of a SOFA agreements, which is wrong because veterans like me don’t fall under these agreements. SOFA agreements has no power over foreign addresses, the Exchange ships from the USA anyway. Then they say can’t ship because it could be taxed upon arrival or the Exchange cannot collect the taxes before hand. No! the Exchange doesn’t collect the import taxes, its collected by the foreign country customs when it arrives if its over a certain amount of value. I wouldn’t mind paying the import tax or the International postage the Exchange could charge me. All I want is the same opportunity, equality, and privilege’s as the veterans in the USA. I hope this comment will be read and heard by many. Maybe change could be made to the Exchange shipping rules and stop the excuses okay Tom Shull? I probably will not order anything big or expensive however something essential in life ,( i.e. sports and fitness clothing), would be great. George Marshall

    • Steve Smith on November 12, 2019 at 1:29 pm

      Mr. Marshall:

      Thank you for writing to your Exchange Post. I’ve forwarded your message to the proper folks who’ll reply to your comment.

      Steve Smith
      Editor, The Exchange Post

      • George E. Marshall on November 22, 2019 at 11:46 am

        I hope they will do something to help us out and change that dreaded reply I keep getting on-line “Cannot Ship Here” to “Can ship there but it will cost $_______ for international shipping and handling” . It’s so simple for them to make up an excuse and keep things in the old ways than change to help up out. I guess they are blind and deaf to bringing in more funds for the Exchange. Think about those Disabled and elderly veterans and retirees who can’t get to the next APO or Exchange facilities that live in a foreign country. this would be great for them too.

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