The Jeep Badge of Honor hard badges on the side of my Jeep never fail to spark conversations with Jeep enthusiasts everywhere I travel.
What really surprises me is how many Jeepers have never heard of the Jeep Badge of Honor program.
I can’t tell you how many times my fellow Jeep enthusiasts have pointed to my Jeep Badge of Honor badges and said, “Hey, those are really cool! Where did you get them?”
Others who had heard of the program were still a bit confused about how the program works.
Don’t worry; I’m about to fix that.
Whether you’ve heard of the program or not, this article is for you.
Jeep Badge of Honor Program: What Is It?
First let me start by saying the Jeep Badge of Honor program is only available to Jeep owners. The program is completely free and the badges look amazing!
So, if you are a non-Jeeper, just stop reading now. Yes, Toyota guy, I’m talking to you. This program is only for Jeep owners. (Technically, anyone can download the app, but only Jeep owners can receive the badges.)
The Jeep Badge of Honor Program is essentially a free app for your iPhone or Android.
The app allows you to discover trails, earn hard badges, and engage with other Jeep enthusiasts online as part of the official Jeep community.
It should be noted that the Jeep Badge of Honor program is the only official off-road program that is entirely owned, operated, and developed by the Jeep brand and FCA US LLC.
Of the hundreds of thousands of legal off-road trails in the U.S.A., Jeep has designated only 49 of them as Jeep Badge of Honor trails (as of this writing in April 2018).
Don’t ask me about the criteria Jeep used to select the 49 trails they have listed because I don’t know. If I had to guess, based on the trails they’ve selected, I would say Jeep selected them based on difficulty, technical challenge level, historical significance, and the overall beauty of the trail.
Jeep Badge of Honor Program: How Do I Get Started?
Really easy, it is a simple, three-step process.
Step 1: Download the free Jeep Badge of Honor app.
Step 2: Browse the Jeep Badge of Honor trails.
The home screen of the app will show you the nearest qualifying trail to your current location. It will also show you the current temperature at the trailhead and how many hours of daylight remain. Pretty nifty, eh?
The map screen will show you your current position on the map with a blue dot. It will also show you all of the Jeep Badge of Honor trails, and where they are located in relation to your current position.
You can click on the trails by name or by location on the map itself to learn more. The map screen will also show you the difficulty level of each of the trails on the right hand side of its name.
Step 3: Drive to a Jeep Badge of Honor trail and check in!
Once you’ve selected the trail you want to run, get your Jeep out to the trail. When you are are at the trailhead, the app will recognize you are there.
Simply check in by hitting the check-in button.
Once checked in, you’ll automatically be awarded the check-in and the badge.
Note, you will still need to request the hard badge. But at this point, Jeep has a record of your check-in!
Jeep Badge of Honor App: How Do I Request the Hard Badge?
Glad you asked. It is pretty simple.
When you first log into the app, you’ll need to create a profile, or link to one of your social network accounts. Any profile method you choose will be connected to the email address you use. So if you create the profile from scratch, it will be the email address you created it from. If you linked to a social networking account, then it will be the email associated with your login for that account.
Once you’ve checked into a qualifying trail on the app, a screen will pop up on the app congratulating you for earning the Badge!
Then if you click on the little person icon fourth from the left, you’ll come to a screen that shows your profile.
This screen has a lot of information including your name, how many points you have, how many check-ins you’ve done, how many photos you’ve submitted, and how many badges you’ve earned.
About halfway down the screen will be a link for you to “View and Request Badges.” Click on that link on your app. Once you’ve clicked on that link, it will take you to another screen showing you all of the hard badges you are eligible for.
The ones you haven’t requested yet will allow you to click on them to submit your request. Make sure you have your 17-character VIN (Vehicle Identification Number) for your Jeep handy when clicking on this link because the app is going to ask you for it. Fill out the form and hit submit.
Jeep will send you an email confirming your check-in to the trail. Once you’ve submitted the information on the app, they’ll also send you an email confirming you’ve successfully submitted your information to receive the hard badge.
That’s it! Now you just wait to get it in the mail. Note: Some folks report receiving their badges within 2 weeks. Officially it is supposed to take 8-12 weeks to receive them. Personally I’ve had some badges take up to 8 months before they got to me.
But the program is free and the badges are free. So what is there to complain about?
The hard badges are worth the wait, and you get a nice little letter from Jeep too!
Jeep Badge of Honor Program: What Else Can I Do on the App?
The app is designed to be about community. You earn points by logging in, exploring trails, uploading photos, and engaging with other Jeep enthusiasts through comments.
These points take you through various stages of Jeep cred from Newbie to Trail Expert.
However, I’ve found that even though I’ve tried to use the app to earn points via discussion and uploading photos, I get my points, but my photos aren’t uploaded. For example, the app shows that I’ve uploaded 12 photos but none of my photos show up on the app. I’ve also commented on various trails, but none of my comments show up on the app.
When I tried to figure out why my photos and comments weren’t showing up, I dove into the app. It seems as though the photos and comments haven’t been approved by whoever is responsible for that part of the app management for about a year. However, the points are still added to my account for uploading photos and commenting. So keep at it. I’m sure Jeep will eventually fix this problem.
My mother taught me never to complain if I wasn’t willing to offer a solution.
So…Jeep, if you are reading this and are interested in bringing me on to help with this, let me know! Shoot me a contact form here, I’d be happy to help get all of those comments and photos up on the site.
Jeep Badge of Honor Program: Anything Else I Should Know?
Yes! If you click on the three little horizontal lines icon on the app, it will take you to a page that gives you all kinds of information!
They have an off-roading 101 guide that covers a TON of information including:
- Trail Difficulty Rating – An explanation of Jeep’s official trail rating system.
- Safety Checklist – Pro tips on how to have a safe and enjoyable trail run.
- A Brief History – A very brief history of the Jeep brand. For a more thorough one, you can click on this article on Jeep History.
- Terrain Elements – Tips on how to drive on snow, mud, sand, and rock crawling.
- Trail Rated Jeep Vehicles – An explanation of what the Trail Rated badge on your Jeep actually means.
- Trail Rated System – An explanation of the various Trail Rated Systems used on Jeep brand vehicles including the ROCK-TRAC 4WD, COMMAND-TRAC 4WD, ACTIVE DRIVE LOCK 4WD, ACTIVE DRIVE II 4WD, QUADRA DRIVE II 4WD with rear ELSD, QUADRA-TRAC II 4WD, and the FREEDOM DRIVE II 4WD.
Lastly and probably most importantly, they have a way to contact the Jeep Badge of Honor staff! Just click on the “Having Issues” link and you’ll be able to send them an email directly.
For those curious, the email address is BadgeofHonor@jeep.com
Jeep Badge of Honor: Closing Thoughts
The concept of this program is brilliant. The execution isn’t perfect. But the program is free!
We have a choice.
We can complain about the things we don’t like, or we can come together as a Jeep community and do our best to get behind the folks who created this program for us.
I’d encourage you to download the app. Check into the trails. Request your badges. Be patient. And then when you do receive them, be grateful.
I love having the official Jeep Badge of Honor hard badges on my Jeep and I hope to collect many more this year on my epic Jeep adventure for 2018.
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