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Blue light

Old 9th Sep 2022, 11:29
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Blue light

Just received my Blue Light Card on the back of my Defense Discount Card; I also understand the MOD are in the process of progressively issuing a Veterans ID cards; Having searched for previous posts on this subject perhaps not all are aware of the benefits.
Defense Discount Service provides discounts both online and on the high street for members of the Armed Forces, Veterans and Armed Forces Community.
Defense Discount Service is home of the Defense Privilege Card, the vetted discount card that can be used in stores, restaurants and venues to obtain armed forces discounts. This discount card allows Veterans and the Armed Forces Community to have a card that can allow them to receive military discounts.

Blue Light Card provides those in the NHS, emergency services, social care sector and armed forces with discounts online and in-store. Blue Light Card also works with small and large companies across the UK to get involved in supporting the Blue Light community through offering our members discounts through Blue Light Card.

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/n...ervice-leavers
https://www.dover.gov.uk/Community/A...an-ID-Card.pdf
https://www.forces.net/military-life...gen-about-them




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Old 9th Sep 2022, 15:20
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Nice reminder.

I have a Defence Discount Card. Not everyone takes it, but the list of those who do is quite extensive. Big and smaller names, but I find its always worth asking whether it helps when buying something.
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Old 9th Sep 2022, 16:36
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It's really frustrating a couple of my favourite eating places ("Bills") for one are now insisting on the light blue card after using the defence card with them for a number of years

Clive
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Old 2nd Nov 2022, 14:56
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According to this update, HM Armed Forces Veterans are entitled to a free Defence Privilege Card wef 1Nov2022 by using the code VETGATEWAY19 at checkout :-

https://support.veteransgateway.org....etail/a_id/460

However, it still demands payment at the moment.
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Old 2nd Nov 2022, 17:44
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An increasing number of places that have usually taken the "defence card" now say that they want to see the Blue Light card instead, I rang The defence services people who said they would look into it and am waiting to get a response, should not take long as they are based at the same address
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Old 2nd Nov 2022, 18:13
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Originally Posted by cliver029 View Post
An increasing number of places that have usually taken the "defence card" now say that they want to see the Blue Light card instead, I rang The defence services people who said they would look into it and am waiting to get a response, should not take long as they are based at the same address
Thanks, cliver. Not knowing too much about the two systems I get much the same impression as you, that there are more discounts available to Blue Light members than those offered by DDS. If they are operated in parallel from the same location, and Service Personnel can apply for the Blue Light Card anyway, wouldn't it be simpler and more efficient if the DDS card was simply subsumed into the Blue Light Card system? I've probably missed something important and have anyway still to provide sufficient proof for eligibility for either card (last P60 only so far). At least there seems to be a growing realisation that those who serve or have served should be valued and acknowledged along with the Emergency Services, etc.
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Old 2nd Nov 2022, 21:58
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Originally Posted by cliver029 View Post
It's really frustrating a couple of my favourite eating places ("Bills") for one are now insisting on the light blue card after using the defence card with them for a number of years
Clive
"Bills" are still showing on the DDS website. You need a code(from the website) as well as showing your card.
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Old 3rd Nov 2022, 13:21
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Still does not accept VETGATEWAY19 & wants payment.
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Old 4th Nov 2022, 18:43
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I gave up and bought a blue light card. Defence one was less and less useful
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Old 5th Nov 2022, 06:00
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Both DDS and Blue Light physical cards are becoming less acceptable due to Walts borrowing/stealing them and getting discounts. The apps which generate a unique code each time they are used for a particular retailer/service seem to be required more frequently.

NEO
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Old 5th Nov 2022, 14:00
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Although there is indeed a lot of overlap of offers between the Blue Light Card and the Defence Discount Service, there are a few outliers that are only offered on one of the cards.

Examples are the British Airways 10% off - only on DDS as it is part of British Airways Armed Forces Corporate Covenant agreement (note on DDS BA are not in listed the alphabetical drop-down list currently – just use the search box using the word ‘British’).

The 10% off at ASDA is a strictly Blue Light Card offer (currently ends 31stt December 2022 but may be extended again hopefully).

Best option if you use these a lot – get both cards!
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Old 12th Nov 2022, 18:08
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My original query to DDS stated:
The Veterans Gateway states that the card is available from 01 November without charge using the code VETGATEWAY19 (see image below). I have been registered on the DDS site since 2012. I have logged in to the site, clicked the card link, uploaded id and entered the code but the site is still requesting that I pay 4.99. Am I doing something wrong or is this not yet available?
The response was:
We are checking your ID you have uploaded but we still have not received the payment for your card. You can complete this in the website or the mobile application. The ID may take 48 hours to be checked, if we have found any problems you will receive an email from us. Your query has been responded to automatically using your account status to try and help with your query. If this response does not help, please reply to this message and a member of the team will get back to you.
To which I replied:
The point is not to progress the card application by paying 4.99. I am trying to use the promo code from the Veterans Gateway "VETGATEWAY19" but the site is not accepting this.

We are now a week later; the promo code is still not being accepted and the team has not got back to me. Why am I not surprised!
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Old 12th Nov 2022, 22:34
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mabmac, thank you. You have saved me the trouble of describing exactly the same experience, and described it better to boot. I am now waiting for my Record of Service to be provided so that I can apply for the Blue Light Card, which seems worth paying for as it provides more and better discounts than DDS anyway. I am also applying for the Veterans ID Card, another process that seems endless. I understand that it is Minister of State for Veterans Affairs Johnny Mercer's intention that every UK veteran is in possession of one next year. He was sacked by Johnson, then reappointed to the interim cabinet, only to be sacked again by Truss, then reappointed by Sunak. Guess what happens next! My guess is that it will all be blown away next Thursday anyway.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Johnny_Mercer_(politician)
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Old 13th Nov 2022, 05:58
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Chugalug2,

Have you applied for a Veterans ID card or do you mean that you're planning to ? I can't find an application process, only that there is a yet to be notified roll out date for them.

Although I'm not sure where they'd be useful when people can use the DDS/Blue Light card for day to day discounts and GP/NHS services simply ask to be notified of Veteran status ?

NEO
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Old 13th Nov 2022, 09:42
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Originally Posted by Nigerian Expat Outlaw View Post
Chugalug2,

Have you applied for a Veterans ID card or do you mean that you're planning to ? I can't find an application process, only that there is a yet to be notified roll out date for them.

Although I'm not sure where they'd be useful when people can use the DDS/Blue Light card for day to day discounts and GP/NHS services simply ask to be notified of Veteran status ?

NEO
NEO, sorry to have not been clearer. You are right of course; my Veterans ID card is as nebulous as my 'free' DDS one. The advantage to having one though, if it ever transpired, is that it would instantly confirm my status where there are no formal Blue Light/DDS arrangements (for instance at USA or other venues). It might even be useful for the GP/NHS services you instance. I'm pretty sure my GP has no idea that I'm a veteran, nor my local hospital either. They're hardly going to take my word for it, and any possible decisions made regarding status would have to be taken there and then. Once the cards are available, they would be recognised as confirmation of having served and enable subsequent action...or would they?

At least I have my tin Vet badge and should perhaps be content with that!
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Old 13th Nov 2022, 10:29
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I'm pretty sure my GP has no idea that I'm a veteran, nor my local hospital either. They're hardly going to take my word for it, and any possible decisions made regarding status would have to be taken there and then.
It's a simple process to inform your GP surgery that you are a military veteran and that you would like the military covenant to be respected. Your status should then be recorded on your NHS records that would follow you to a hospital. It is just a phone call.
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Old 13th Nov 2022, 10:44
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Originally Posted by beardy View Post
It's a simple process to inform your GP surgery that you are a military veteran and that you would like the military covenant to be respected. Your status should then be recorded on your NHS records that would follow you to a hospital. It is just a phone call.
Thanks for the info beardy. What sort of system is that though? Every Walt could do the same (and no doubt already has). No wonder the NHS is as dysfunctional as it is. A classic British lash up, a wide-open opportunity to abuse the system paired off with a bureaucratic unwillingness to issue IDs to those entitled to them. I well remember the sense of loss at having to hand in my F1250. My premonitions were all too justified it seems.
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Old 13th Nov 2022, 15:12
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Originally Posted by beardy View Post
It's a simple process to inform your GP surgery that you are a military veteran and that you would like the military covenant to be respected. Your status should then be recorded on your NHS records that would follow you to a hospital. It is just a phone call.
Beardy/Chugalug 2,

This appears to be pot luck. My surgery asked to see (quote) "Some form of proof" of my status, so I took my Certificate of Service in a couple of years ago.

Of course the preferential treatment only applies to health issues arising as a direct consequence of ones service.

NEO
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Old 13th Nov 2022, 15:14
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Chugalug2. I went through the process a few months back. Most NHS trusts have a mental support branch. I contacted them ref PTSD. After a few phone and email consultations they agreed I have it, but at such a low level that I can look after it myself. However, they did flag up my records as a vet and a PTSD sufferer. Also a couple of useful local phone numbers should they be needed. Hope this helps.
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Old 13th Nov 2022, 18:35
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This “Certificate of Service” has been mentioned before. I never received anything like that when I left the RAF in the mid 1990s.
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