San Francisco Military Discounts

How to Save on Your Stay in the SF Bay Area

You will find San Francisco military discounts at museums and attractions all around town. Some offer free admission, while others offer a discounted price for your ticket.

San Francisco Military Discounts

In some cases, the discounts will extend to your family too. Just so you know, they all ask for a military ID or proof of your service when you purchase your tickets.

Several museums and attractions are also Blue Star Museums, which offer free admission between Memorial Day and Labor Day Weekends. You will find a list of all of these museums toward the bottom of the page.

Disclaimer: I receive a small commission from some of the links on this page.

California Academy of Sciences

You can receive up to $3 off your general admission to the California Academy of Sciences. To take advantage of the discount, just present your current military ID or proof of service (i.e., VA card or DD-214) at the ticket counter.

This is one of the San Francisco military discounts that only applies to members specifically in the military and does not extend out to your family.

Make sure to arrive early to get your tickets. This line gets really long and you don't want to miss all of the amazing things to see and do inside.

You will find it in Golden Gate Park. Here are some other fun things to do around the California Academy of Sciences.

Asian Art Museum

The Asian Art Museum also participates in San Francisco military discounts. This world-class museum features works from all around Asia including China, India, and Japan. They also feature some interesting pieces from smaller countries around Asia including Malaysia, Indonesia, and the Philippines.

They offer free admission to all active duty members throughout the year with a current ID. This will also include free admission for up to 5 family members.

You will find this museum in the Civic Center District.

Walt Disney Museum

The Walt Disney Museum is another great deal if you are looking for other San Francisco military discounts. All military personnel with a valid ID will receive free admission into the museum. This also includes your spouse and kids.

They are also a part of the Blue Star Families program. This offers you free admission for you (with a valid ID) and up to five family members between Memorial Day and Labor Day Weekends.

You will find it in the Presidio.

San Francisco Military Discounts at Pier 39

Pier 39 offers several San Francisco military discounts for those with a current ID. They include discounts at the 7D Experience, Alcatraz Gift Shop and at Beer 39. Other discounts include one free hour of parking, 25% off at Boudin Bakery Cafe, and 10% off at the NFL/College Shop.

In order to get your discounts, simply stop by the California Welcome Center on the 2nd level near Fog Harbor Fish House. It's open from 9 am to 8 pm every day except Thanksgiving and Christmas Day.

Aquarium of the Bay

Another one of the locations where the San Francisco military discounts is available is at the Aquarium of the Bay on Pier 39. These ones work a little different than the others on this list.

They offer discounted tickets to both active and retired military personnel. However, you cannot pick up the tickets at the door or in advance online. You must stop by either Beale Air Force Base or Travis Air Force Base to get your discounted military tickets.

You will find the Aquarium of the Bay in Fisherman's Wharf. Here are just a few other fun things to do nearby.

San Francisco Military Discounts at Pier 45

You will also receive discounts at the Pier 45 attractions including the SS Jeremiah O'Brien and the USS Pampanito.

The SS Jeremiah O'Brien is one of only two Liberty ships that was used in World War II. This one is special as it's the only one of the two that has been unaltered, so is completely historically accurate. Active military receive a 50% discount on their ticket price with a current ID.

Right next to the SS Jeremiah O'Brien is the USS Pampanito. This is a WWII Balao Class Fleet Submarine. This floating museum offers you the chance to look inside a real life submarine and learn more about the daily life of its military personnel. You will receive 50% off the ticket price when you show your military ID.

MOAD

The Museum of African Diaspora (MOAD) is another attraction offering San Francisco military discounts. You will find the museum in the South of Market District near several other world class museums.

MOAD offers free admission to active duty military all year long. You will need to provide your military ID at the admission booth when you arrive.

The MOAD is an interactive museum and one of my favorites in the city. It focuses on the African Diaspora throughout the world. The story is told through hands-on displays, videos, and audio recordings. It's one you do not want to miss.

San Francisco Zoo

The San Francisco Military Discounts at the zoo are offered for both active and retired personnel. Make sure to bring your ID or proof of service, so you will receive the SF resident rate for your admission.

The SF Zoo is home to a variety of local and exotic animals. You will love Cat Corner, which is home to lions and tigers. The Leanne B. Roberts African Savanna exhibit is another favorite and is home to several giraffe and zebra. Other fun places to visit include the Australian WalkAbout, Thelma and Henry Doelger Primate Discovery Center, and the Fisher Family Children's Zoo.

The zoo is located on the western end of the city near the Pacific Ocean.

Activity Tickets at Up to 50% Off

Another great place to find discounts for your stay is through Goldstar. They offer deals at up to 50% off event, attraction, and activity tickets all around San Francisco and the Bay Area. Here are just a few of their current discounts.

  • 60-Minute Bay Cruise: Cruises around the bay, leaves from Fisherman's Wharf, several cruises a day, Full price $33, Goldstar price $20*

  • California Sunset Cruise: 2-hour evening cruise on the SF Bay, includes light appetizers and one drink per ticket, Full price $80, Goldstar $55*

  • North Beach Food Tour: 3-hour walking tour, offers a variety of samples in this Italian district, Full price $69, Goldstar $48*

  • Chinatown Food Tour: Sample traditional dishes in the popular Chinatown district as you learn about its history, Saturday and Sunday mornings at 10am, Full price $69, Goldstar $48*

  • Golden Gate Bridge Biking Tour: Cruise along the waterfront, over the bridge and onto Sausalito, Full price $55, Goldstar $27.50*

*Small service fee at checkout.

Blue Star Museums

Blue Star Museums offer free admission to their exhibits between Memorial Day Weekend in May through Labor Day Weekend. This is the current list of those offering these benefits. This list changes frequently, so make sure to visit the Blue Star Museums page to confirm each museum is still included. You can use zip code 94115 to get a list of participating museums.

  • Asian Art Museum of San Francisco

  • California Historical Society

  • Children's Creativity Museum

  • Chinese Historical Society of America

  • Contemporary Jewish Museum

  • Museum of Craft and Design

  • San Francisco Fire Department Museum

  • San Francisco Museum of Modern Art

  • The Walt Disney Family Museum

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Hi there! I'm Jill and I love writing about San Francisco travel as much as I love exploring my amazing city. Thanks for stopping by and please contact me if you have any questions before your trip.

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