VetTix is an organization that shows appreciation to our Veterans, active duty military, and, First Responders by providing free event tickets.
And this blog will tell you all about how both VetTix and 1stTix work, and how to sign up for either one.
A Concert Deal for Military
A few months ago a friend of ours sat with his wife in the audience at Symphony Hall in Phoenix. They came to enjoy the orchestra which was accompanied by Phoenix Symphony Chorus. Tickets to the symphony usually cost between $25 and $120. But for our friend Aaron and his wife, who were sitting in some of the best seats in the house, there was no charge.
Aaron served for 4 years in the Air Force and as a veteran. He is participating in a program called VetTix where he is given tickets to cultural and sporting events at no charge.
A Ticket Deal for First Responders
Our daughter Abbey is married to Collin. Both have graduated college and earned master’s degrees – we’re really proud of them! Collin is now a police officer in Arizona and recently told us about a new initiative from VetTix called 1stTix.
VetTix has expanded its offerings from only military to now include currently serving and retired law enforcement officers, firefighters, EMTs, nurses and 911 Dispatchers.
Abbey & Collin have enjoyed free tickets from 1stTix to sporting events and concerts! It’s truly a blessing.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
What is Vet Tix?
VetTix.com is the website for the Veteran Tickets Foundation (VTF) which is a nationwide non-profit, 501c(3) organization based in Phoenix AZ. VTF was established in 2009 by Michael Focareto, who is a disabled US Navy veteran.
This organization is growing incredibly. In 2008 they gave away 2500 tickets. In 2022 that number had grown to 3.8 million.
In total, VetTix and 1stTix have given away more than 17 million event tickets in all 50 States and Washington, DC to our military, veterans, first responders and their families. That’s Impressive!
How VetTix Started
The concept for VetTix came to Michael when he was given a ticket to attend the 2008 Super Bowl between the Giants and the Patriots. It was held in Phoenix, AZ. As he sat watching the game, he noticed that the seat next to him was vacant the entire time. He couldn’t believe that a Super Bowl seat went unused!
He thought, “Someone gave me a ticket, why couldn’t this seat next to me have been given to another veteran?” The vision was sparked and Michael was the man to make it happen. He started procuring and giving away event tickets to veterans in 2008.
In 2009 the Arizona Diamondbacks professional baseball team donated 40 tickets for veterans to attend. VetTix received a good amount of publicity as a result of this. And since then, more than 1.9 million tickets have been distributed to more than 400,000 military families. The retail value of the tickets exceeds $66 million dollars.
How Do You Sign Up for VetTix?
If you or a friend are: currently serving in the military; the primary next of kin or spouse of a service person who was Killed in Action or is an honorably discharged veteran, you are eligible to participate in VetTix. Just go to VetTix.org and sign up for the program. You’ll need to read the instructions on how to verify your status. It’s a relatively simple process that our son-in-law, Nolan completed it in about 15 minutes.
How Do You Sign Up for 1stTix?
It’s virtually the same since 1stTix is a subsidiary of VetTix. Simply go to the 1stTix Website and fill out their application form. You’ll indicate what type of 1st responder you are by telling them:
- I am an EMT
- I am a Firefighter
- I am a Law Enforcement Officer
- I am a 911 Dispatcher I am a Nurse
Then you’ll give them your email and zip code. They will verify your info through ID.me and set up your account. If you are already a VetTix member, they ask that you don’t create an additional account.
How Do VetTix and 1st Tix work?
Once you sign up, you earn 2 appreciation coins each month just for being part of this group. The coins are used to buy chances to win tickets for events. I coin per chance to win a ticket in the initial lottery draw. You can earn 15 more appreciation coins by referring friends, or by wearing VetTix gear to events and sharing photos on social media (10 appreciation coins).
When you want to attend an event, you simply search the site, find an event you want to attend, then submit your name and coins for the event. There are events listed in all 50 states. And they are for all kinds of events including concerts, ballet and symphony performances, football, baseball, basketball and even roller derby events. Tickets are awarded through a lottery system. So there is some lag time from when you submit your request, to the time you find out if you’re going to the event.
The system is very fair and organized. Once you create your account on the website you can read all of the rules, additional ways to win appreciation coins and about other services that they offer.
WANT MORE FREE STUFF? Check out our Free Stuff Category
What can civilians do to participate in VetTix?
If you have purchased tickets for an event and are unable to attend, consider donating your tickets. Of course, you’d have to give them some lead time. If you’re part of an organization that sells tickets to events, consider donating a few seats to the Veteran’s Ticket Foundation. You’ll get a tax write-off and a veteran will get a blessing. The link for anyone wanting to donate tickets is: http://www.vettix.org/donate_tickets.php
Of course, this organization could benefit from cash donations which can also be made on their website.
However you participate, VetTix is a great way to show appreciation to our military families.
If you or someone you know could qualify to signup for VetTix, could you share Nolan or Collin’s info so they can get a 15-coin bonus? They don’t know that we’re asking you to do this. But we thought it could be a little thank-you gift for their service. And both of our daughters could get to go along and enjoy some cool events.
Sign up for VetTix using Nolan’s account here
Sign up for 1stTix using Collin’s account here
For more great ideas for saving money on entertainment and recreation with your family, click here!
And if you want more inexpensive recreation ideas, check out this page’s ideas and the video.