NEX extends shopping privileges to eligible DoD civilians

Active DoD and Coast Guard civilians are now able to peruse the aisles of the NAS Patuxent River Navy Exchange (NEX) following a recent DoD directive extending them shopping privileges. The new shoppers are restricted from purchasing alcohol, tobacco, and uniform items.

Active DoD civilian personnel are now able to shop at Navy Exchange (NEX) facilities throughout the United States, U.S territories and possessions, following a recent DoD direction which extended in-store shopping access to DoD and Coast Guard civilian employees starting May 1. Additionally, online access to active and retired DoD and Coast Guard civilian employees is expected to begin by mid-October.

“However, the expanded authorization was not granted to DoD [or Coast Guard] civilian dependents,” clarified Kathlyn Daughrity, general manager of the NAS Patuxent River NEX. “DoD civilians making purchases at the NEX will be required to present a valid Common Access Card (CAC) at the point of sale.”

DoD civilians employed at Pax River that have yet to be issued a CAC may still shop at NEX Pax River, but must present an official proof of employment dated within 12 months, and a valid government photo identification card.

“An example of official proof of employment would include a Letter of Employment, SF-50, or Personnel Action Report,” Daughrity added.

The expansion was a decision made by the DoD in an April 12 directive extending shopping access to active DoD and Coast Guard appropriated and non-appropriated funded civilian employees at all military exchange stores, including the Army and Air Force Exchange, Coast Guard Exchange, and Marine Corps Exchange, as well as the NEX.

Pax River’s NEX is welcoming its newest shoppers.

“With this addition to our authorized customer base, sales are expected to increase which in turn helps the entire military resale community leverage our buying power,” Daughrity noted. “In fact, NEXCOM gives 100% of its earnings back to Sailors. Since 1946, NEXCOM has given nearly $3.7 billion to support Navy Morale, Welfare, and Recreation quality of life programs, which in turn greatly benefits the entire military community — active duty and retirees.”

Access for locally-hired DoD civilian employees in foreign countries is still limited by host nation laws and international agreements, according to a NEXCOM press release. Those DoD civilian employees are authorized to shop at military exchanges in the U.S. and its territories and possessions when they are traveling.

Civilian shoppers at the NEX are restricted from purchasing alcohol offered in the package store, tobacco, and uniform items.

The new shopping privilege does not apply to the Commissary.