Free LinkedIn Premium Upgrade Coming for Military Spouses

(LinkedIn company logo)
(LinkedIn company logo)

The professional social media networking site is expanding their free upgraded account program to military spouses starting in July, LinkedIn officials announced today.

LinkedIn's Premium accounts typically cost $29.99 per month, or $299.88 annually. All users can access the premium system for a one month free trial.

Currently, a one year "premium" account upgrade is free to veterans verified using the service. The upgrade freebie can currently be used one time, and expires at the one year mark. It gives veterans access to all the LinkedIn Premium features and LinkedIn Learning courses, which can help users learn about job hunting or better their career skills. About 2.4 million veterans are currently using that program, LinkedIn officials said.

The LinkedIn spouse upgrade will be available to all active duty spouses who have PCSed within the last six months, as well as all spouses within six months of transitioning out of the military. Guard and Reserve spouses are eligible if they PCS (which is rare) or at transition. And, because the Coast Guard is not eligible for other Military OneSource services (that's spelled out here), Coast Guard spouses are also not eligible for this, according to a Defense Department official. The official said they are hoping for a way to add them eventually. 

For spouses the company is also rolling out a spouse-specific learning path aimed at providing extra information to help tackle those unique employment challenges we face thanks to moves, deployments and all the other fun military life offers.

"With more than 650,000 military spouses of active duty service members, and with the average military family moving to a new installation every two to three years, an estimated 220,000 military spouses are economically displaced every year," Dan Savage, a military veteran who heads the company's veteran program wrote in the announcement. "But these military spouses have soft skills that make them valuable to potential employers: they are resilient, resourceful, adaptable and enterprising - not to mention adept at navigating uncertainty."

The specifics on how the Defense Department is going to certify eligibility in its system are still being nailed down, and it's not clear yet exactly how spouses will need to log in to get the program. The best thing to do for now is hit up the DoD's spouse employment site, SECO, and sign-up for program updates. (Instructions for that are at the bottom of this page.)

Unlike the veteran update, the spouse program is available in one year chunks after each move, not just on a one time basis. That's pretty cool.

So what's so great about LinkedIn Premium? Those users get access to litany of site features that can increase the site's job hunting effectiveness. My three favorite premium-only features are the ability to view who, specifically, is looking at your LinkedIn profile, a feature that analyzes my profile and directs me to jobs that might fit, and this fun little button that signals to those using the system's recruiter side that I'm open to getting job offers.

The expansion is being launched in partnership with the Defense Department's spouse employment program, which includes a whole parade of other resources and training, and can even hook you up with a career counselor via Military OneSource.


This story originally noted that the Coast Guard was excluded from this. A reader questioned that fact and we double checked. It is correct.

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