On Veterans Day (Nov. 11) we will honor more than 22 million men and women who have served in the United States Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force and Coast Guard.

Many restaurants and businesses around the United States offer special “thank you” freebies on this day to vets, active service personnel and sometimes their families.

For 2012, the following restaurants have announced special Veterans Day offers. Most require that you be in uniform or show a military ID.

  • Golden Corral – On Nov. 12 from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. Golden Corral is offering free dinner buffet and beverage to veterans, reservists and active and retired US military personnel. In 2011, the restaurant chain served more than 375,000 meals for military appreciation day.
  • Applebee’s – On Nov. 11, Applebee’s is offering veterans and current military personnel a free meal from their special Veterans Day menu that includes steak, shrimp, burgers, chicken and pasta. Beverages and gratuity are additional.
  • Olive Garden – On Nov. 11 Olive Garden is offering veterans and active military a free meal with choice of five entrees plus unlimited breadsticks, soup and salad.
  • Denny’s Restaurants – On Monday, Nov. 12, Denny’s is offering veterans and active military a free pancake breakfast from 6 a.m. to 2 p.m.
  • T.G.I.Friday’s – On Monday, Nov.12, participating Friday’s restaurants are offering active military and veterans a free lunch from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
  • Krispy Creme Donuts – This nationwide doughnut chain has also traditionally offered free doughnuts and coffee to veterans and active service personnel on Nov. 11.
  • Chili’s Restaurants – Chili’s is offering a free lunch with choice of seven entrees to veterans and active military on Sunday, Nov. 11.
  • McCormick and Schmick’s – On Nov. 11 and 12 this upscale restaurant is offering a free lunch or dinner entree to active, former and retired military.
  • Texas Roadhouse – This restaurant chain is offering veterans and active military personnel a free lunch on Nov. 12.
  • Pizzeria Uno – Free entree or individual pizza with the purchase of another entree or pizza for active military and veterans. Offer is valid on Nov. 11 and 12.
  • Sizzler Steakhouse – Free lunch on Nov. 12 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. for veterans and active military personnel.
  • Lonestar Steakhouse – Free entree on Nov. 12 to veterans and active military.
  • Max & Erma’s – Free meal on Nov. 11 to veterans and active military.
  • California Pizza Kitchen – Free pizza and soft drink to veterans and active military on Nov. 11 and Nov. 12.

In addition to the restaurant offers, the following companies are offering Veterans Day freebies:

  • Lowe’s – Offers a 10 percent discount to vets, active military, military retirees and their families
  • Home Depot – Also offers a 10 percent discount to veterans, active military personnel, military retirees and their families
  • Knott’s Berry Farm – Free admission for a veteran, active serviceman or woman or reservist and one guest during Veterans Month (Nov. 1–21)

More than 100 US national parks are also offering free admission on Veterans Day. This is one of several fee-free days at America’s National Parks. And, you don’t have to be a veteran to take advantage of this offer.

Do you know of any other Veterans Day free offers? If so, please leave a comment below.

Free Meals and More for Vets on Veterans Day 2012