Commissaries at all overseas and stateside bases will remain open during a government shutdown, the Defense Commissary Agency announced Friday.
Spokesman Kevin L. Robinson initially announced Friday afternoon the decision for overseas commissaries to stay open, and Friday evening, DECA released a statement expanding that decision to include all commissaries in the U.S.
The call for overseas commissaries to stay open came after indecisiveness in recent days left many military families overseas wondering if they’d be left to fend for themselves shopping on the host nation economy.
On Thursday, a spokesman for DeCA in Europe indicated that commissaries would be closed, only to have Pentagon officials later say no decision had been made.
By the time an official ruling was made, some stores had done particularly brisk business, with customers looking to stock up, just in case.
At Ramstein Air Base in Germany, commissary director Harry Nichols said the store had cleared $140,000 in sales by 3 p.m., nearly doubling its $80,000 take on Dec. 24, traditionally one of its busiest days of the year. Dozens of people stood in checkout lines that snaked into the aisles, and the store planned to stay open until 10 p.m., an hour later than usual.