The last time it snowed I almost ended up in a ditch after losing control of my classic Chevy truck while on my way to work. I was driving in a straight line one moment and the next I was in the oncoming traffic lane counter steering and doing everything I could to get back in my lane before having a head on collision. I should of know better than to drive a two wheel drive pick up truck with out sand bags on icy roads but at the end of the day it became my excuse to buy a 4 wheel drive Jeep which I've been wanting for a while.  This is where things got interesting, As I was about to drive away from the dealership the sales person said "don't forget the Jeep wave". The Jeep wave.... what is that? I thought to myself but I was so excited to get on the road that I paid no mind and took off. In the next few days I noticed complete strangers waving at me as I was driving and being a car guy I thought... they must really think this Jeep is cool looking... then it hit me... it's the "Jeep wave".   Now I had to know, What is this all about? Thanks to here is the Jeep wave explained.



Last Updated February 5, 2020 | Andrew Boyle

Owning a Jeep doesn’t just open up the opportunity to traverse the path less traveled, you also gain a kinship among all Jeep owners. This camaraderie is on display every time you pass another person driving a Jeep in the form of a wave. The Jeep Wave is an honor bestowed upon those drivers with the superior intelligence, taste, class and discomfort tolerance to own the ultimate vehicle: The Jeep.

"THE JEEP WAVE IS AN HONOR"“Warning: Owning, registering, insuring, or driving a Jeep implies knowledge of, and intent to abide by the following rules, regulations, and guidelines. Failure to obey the letter or spirit of the rules may result in you being ignored by other Jeep owners as you sit along the side of the road next to your stalled vehicle in a blizzard surrounded by Saturns, Yugos, and Hyundais. — Jeep Talk”

Originally practiced by Jeep owners driving the CJ, YJ, TJ, and JK, the Jeep Wave now extends to all members of the Jeep family. The Jeep Wave generally consists of a vigorous side-to-side motion of one or both hands, a raised hand waving, or two or four fingers extended upward from the steering wheel. While these are generally what describe the Jeep Wave, it may be modified to suit circumstances and locally accepted etiquette. Some examples of commonly accepted modifications are having your Jeep top off and a one-handed wave above the windshield or outside body tub. Or, if you find yourself in a southern or more rural location, the wave is usually just a raise of fingers from the steering wheel and a nod.

The rules for the Jeep Wave are pretty straightforward. All Jeepers are responsible for upholding the tradition of the wave. If a fellow Jeeper waves, you are required to return the wave even if that Jeeper is driving a Grand Cherokee or Compass. It’s as simple as that.

Jeeps aren’t the only vehicles whose drivers wave to one another. There have been sightings of Mini-Cooper drivers, Porsche drivers, classic car drivers, and Harley riders sharing waves with each other as well. But there can only be one Jeep Wave.

Interested in finding out where you stand in the Jeep Wave Hierarchy? Then check out our Jeep Wave Score Calculator!

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