Federal Freebies: Deals for Federal Employees During the Government Shutdown
As the partial government shutdown enters its second month, many companies and brands across the nation are offering “furlough freebies” and “shutdown specials” to impacted federal employees and contractors. From waived late payment fees to free spaghetti dinners, check out where you can find these federal employee deals below.
Wireless Providers with Deals for Federal Employees
- Verizon: Customer care is waiving late fees and agent assist fees for impacted federal government employees for the duration of the shutdown. Call 866-266-1445 or sign-up on through the Verizon app for more information.
- AT&T: Customer service representatives will adjust late fees, provide extensions and work with customers adjusted by the shutdown to revise payment schedules. You can call 800-331-0500 for more information.
- Sprint: Customer service will work with customers affected by the shutdown to find short-term payment solutions. Government workers can call 888-211-4727 for more information.
- T-Mobile: Impacted customers can call customer care to discuss short-term payment options including flexible payment options or payment deferral. Call T-Mobile Customer Care by dialing 611 on a T-Mobile device or 877-746-0909 from any phone for more information.
Financial Assistance for Federal Employees:
- Ally Financial: The assistance program has been expanded to provide to its customers affected by the shutdown. Based on individual needs, benefits may include refunds of transaction fees or non-sufficient funds fees, expedited check fee waivers, wire fee waivers, late charge waivers and payment extensions. Customers can call customer care at 877-247-2559 to discuss options.
- Bank of America: The Client Assistance Program offers personalized assistance and tailors its services for each individual’s needs. Call 844-219-0690 for more information.
- Chase: Customers who are U.S. government employees can call a special care line at 888-356-0023 to discuss available hardship programs. Customers who do business with a federal agency can also call the care line.
- Discover: Impacted federal employees who are Discover cardmembers or have a loan with the bank may be eligible for assistance, like skipping a payment and having late fees and interest charges reversed if they miss a payment. Call 800-347-2683 for assistance.
- Huntington Bank: The bank is automatically waiving all overdraft-related fees on existing Huntington checking accounts of customers affected by the shutdown. Huntington is also offering a low-rate, quick loan program to qualified customers. For more assistance, customers can visit any Huntington location or call the bank’s government shutdown support line at 888-697-4682.
- Old National Bank: Furloughed employees and employees of federal contractors impacted by the shutdown can apply for a 90-day, no-fee, interest-free loan of up to $1,500. Call 800-731-2265 or visit banking centers for further assistance.
- U.S. Bank: Customers affect by the shutdown can apply for a low-rate, quick loan of $100-$6,000. The loan is available to customers with any U.S. Bank product, such as mortgage, auto loans or U.S. Bank credit cards. Customers can call the designated federal government shutdown service line at 877-760-6046 to get started.
- Wells Fargo: Mortgage, loan and credit card customers who are affected by the shutdown may qualify for forbearance or other payment assistance programs, depending on the individual’s needs. Customers can call 800-TO-WELLS, or the number on their credit card, debit card or statement, or visit any Wells Fargo branch for assistance.
Restaurants With Federal Employee Deals:
- Fazoli’s: Participating Fazoli’s locations are offering a free Pizza Baked Spaghetti with the purchase of a drink to furloughed federal government employees with a valid ID. The deal is limited to one meal per eligible guest per day and will be valid at participating locations until Sunday, January 27.
- Great Harvest Bread Company: Certain locations across the country have set up a “Shutdown Shelf,” offering free bread to federal workers and contractors in need. Bread will be available for the duration of the shutdown, and affected employees will need to show valid ID.
- Romano’s Macaroni Grill: Any government employee with valid ID can receive one complimentary Mom’s Ricotta Meatballs + Spaghetti entree at any of the 84 locations nationwide. This deal is available between the lunch hours 11 a.m. and 4 p.m. when dining-in until January 31.
- Potbelly Sandwich Shop: Until January 27, all Potbelly locations across the country are offering BOGO entrees to federal employees who show their ID.
- White Castle: On January 29, furloughed federal employees can get a free Combo Meal (only #1-6) or Breakfast Combo Meal at any White Castle locations across the country.
- Local soup kitchens and food banks are also setting up pop-up locations and welcoming furloughed federal employees and contractors. You can check your local newspaper and online Yelp community to find which local businesses are offering specials to federal employees.
Entertainment Deals for Federal Employees:
- Sky Zone: Furloughed government employees, and up to three immediate family members, are each eligible for one free 60-minute jump per day at the indoor trampoline park. This offer is valid at participating locations every Tuesday through Thursday until January 31.
- RPM Raceway: The indoor karting and entertainment destination in New York, Connecticut and New Jersey is offering a free race to federal employees until the shutdown ends.
- Second City Chicago and Hollywood: The improv comedy group is offering free improv workshops and tickets to select comedy shows to federal employees who show valid ID.
Other Discounts, Benefits and Deals for Federal Employees
- Unemployment benefits: According to the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, federal employees may be eligible for “Unemployment Compensation for Federal Employees.” This compensation is administered by state unemployment insurance agencies.
- Gas & utilities: Many local companies are working with furloughed employees. Contact your company to see what options are available for you.
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