I've just returned home from a couple of days at USAA HQ in beautiful San Antonio, Texas. USAA gave myself and several other mispouse and personal finance bloggers an all-expenses-paid trip out to tour their facilities, test drive some of their new innovations (and some preferred cars, too) and to participate in focus groups. As far as we know, this is the first time a corporation has hosted a group of bloggers, so we may have made a little history.
The past couple of days were incredible and it'll be difficult to get it all in, but I'm going to try. In this post, I'll post some photos of what we saw on the tour. In the next post I'm going to tell you about some of the services USAA is about to launch for its members.
My first reaction to the USAA campus was, "WOW!" It's an enormous complex and most of us thought it resembled the Pentagon inside, only people were happy instead of grumpy.... The grounds were magnificent and tranquil. Deer roam the campus. This is about as close as I could get to them (click to enlarge any photo):
The corridors of USAA are a virtual military history museum. They display everything from old military uniforms to POW/MIA bracelets to Three Medals of Honor (under very tight security). It's really incredible, and a constant reminder for their employees as to who they serve, and why.
USAA has a full-service television studio. Below is the studio and media control room:
The 14,000 employees who work in San Antonio are well taken care of. They have restaurants, dry cleaning services, child care and a state-of-the-art fitness center:
A group photo of the entire delegation:
Those present were:
Kate from The Paycheck Chronicles (and SposueBUZZ)
Hank fromMilitary Money Might
Janet from Military Money Matters
Ryan from The Military Wallet
Evette from Military Money Magazine
JMoney from Budgets are Sexy
Brandy from Army Wife Magazine
Wendy from My Military Life
Star and Janet fromArmy Wife Network
Dan from Military Avenue
Greta from Hooah Wife and Friends
Vivian from Blue Star Families
Kathie from Military Spouse Help
Mrs. G from Mudville Gazette
If you're interested in following the real-time chatter from all of us, our twitter hashtag was #usaabe.
More to come, much more....