Frequently Asked Questions


What is Expedition Granted?
Expedition Granted is National Geographic's nationwide search to find the next generation of explorers and to grant one person's dream expedition for $50,000. It is a contest designed to show that we are all explorers in our own unique way, regardless of how we choose to push boundaries and forge new paths. Move over Indiana Jones, it's a new age of exploration!
How can I enter?
Simply let us know here what your passion project is and why you deserve to have your expedition granted via a short video and project description. Then, help drum up support for your project by sharing it with everyone you know.
Don't have a specific passion project in mind?
No worries! You can still support the next generation of explorers by sharing, liking and commenting on their projects in the project gallery.
Do I have to have specific experience or special education in a certain area in order to participate?
Absolutely not! Anyone with a big idea and desire to forge new paths is welcome to enter.
I thought an "expedition" was only about going on a cool adventure in the rainforest or climbing Mt. Everest. What do food, music and art have to do with an "expedition"?
While exploring the rainforest or climbing Mt. Everest are certainly one way to go on an expedition, "expedition" doesn't have to mean the physical act of going from Point A to Point B. Any time you are going on a journey of discovery, whether it is in your backyard, with your garage band, in your kitchen, in a laboratory, or on the road to Timbuktu, you are exploring. Exploration is about pushing boundaries and charting new territory, whether it is within the human brain, in space, in the ocean, or in creating a new way of cooking or making music. We can't wait to see what exploration means to you!
Why is National Geographic doing this?
For more than 125 years, National Geographic has been the leader in exploration, funding iconic expeditions around the globe to the highest mountains, deepest oceans and most remote corners of the earth. Now in the 21st Century with so much left unexplored, we are excited to see what the next generation of explorers has in store for the world and are honored to be able to propel one deserving new explorer on their journey.
What's the project deadline?
All projects must be submitted by August 31, 2014.
When will a winner be selected?
After the submission period closes on August 31, 2014, we will narrow down the field to a group of finalists who will be announced on September 16, 2014. Then we'll open it up to the public to choose the winner from September 16, 2014 through September 29, 2014. The winner will be announced on September 30, 2014.
Can you submit more than one project?
No, sorry. Each explorer can only submit one entry.
If I get the most likes and shares, do I win?
Shares and likes do not influence who will be selected as a finalist. If you are selected as a finalist, however, it is important to make sure to spread the word about your project to help generate as many votes as possible. Public votes for finalists determine the winner. Please read more about the finalist selection process and criteria here.
What would I win?
The winner will receive a $50,000 cash prize and will be announced on the National Geographic Channel (in 90MM households in the United States.)
If I win, when do I get the award?
The winner can expect to receive award payment by October 31, 2014.
Who owns my idea/project/video?
You retain full ownership of your project and idea with the exception of any content owned by National Geographic but by submitting your project photo and video, you grant National Geographic and our partners a perpetual, non-revocable right and license to use and modify your content for any purpose across all National Geographic and our partners platforms. For more information, see the Terms of Use and Official Rules.


What does it mean to be a member of the National Geographic Society?
National Geographic members support our mission to make a difference by following, funding, and sharing our critical research projects and expeditions. In the coming months, new features will allow members to get closer to our explorers, photographers, and storytellers and connect with other members around the world. Please note that a Society membership does NOT mean that you receive a subscription to National Geographic Magazine.
Does it cost anything?
No, it's free to join the National Geographic Society!
How do I unsubscribe from email notifications?
You can unsubscribe from National Geographic emails through the membership center.


What is the judging process?
National Geographic will select up to 10 finalists and then open it up to the public to cast their votes for their favorite project. The project that receives the most votes from the public will receive the $50,000 prize.
What are the judging criteria?
The finalists will be selected based on their projects’ originality, impact, and viability.

  • Originality (50%): How original is the project? Is it a new idea or does it build upon an existing one? Does it expand upon the existing notion of exploration and push boundaries into uncharted territory?
  • Impact (30%): Does the project make a positive contribution to the local or global community? Does the idea have the potential to connect with the hearts and minds of others?
  • Viability (20%): Can the project be fully realized (with the right amount of time and money)? Will National Geographic's $50K prize allow for a healthy project start or full project execution?
  • What does originality mean?
    Originality is a measure of how novel or innovative your idea is within your chosen field (e.g. art, music, tech, science, food). An original project tries to accomplish new goals or tries new ways of accomplishing the same goals.
    What does impact mean?
    Impact is the effect your project efforts would have on your local and/or global community. If you're contributing to our knowledge and understanding of the world, inspiring people, adding to our body of art and culture, helping conservation efforts, or generally making an aspect of life better or easier for more than one person, then you're making an impact.
    What does viability mean?
    Viability means how likely it is that you could bring your project idea to life in a reasonable timeframe if you win, given your skillset and the ambition of the project. It's not viable to plan a manned mission to Mars with only a $50,000 prize, for example.


    I am under 21. Can I get permission to submit a project?
    Unfortunately, no. Expedition Granted is only open to those 21 years and older at this time.
    Do I have to be a US resident to enter?
    Yes, right now Expedition Granted is only open to residents of the United States.
    I want to submit but I don't want to join National Geographic Society. What do I do?
    You do have to join the National Geographic Society to submit an Expedition Granted project idea. Membership is free, however, and you can opt out of receiving emails if you choose.
    What's the last day I can submit a project?
    The gallery closes to new submissions on August 31, 2014.
    Why is the project description so short?
    The project description is short enough to fit into a single Tweet. When someone chooses to share your project on Twitter, the suggested Tweet automatically includes your project description.
    How do I know that my video was successfully submitted, and when will my project page go live?
    After you submit, your project has to be approved by a community manager before it will appear on the site. We will approve projects as quickly as possible but thank you in advance for your patience as this process may take a few days. You'll get an email from our community manager when your project is pushed live. If you believe that you submitted everything, but several days have passed and you haven't received an email yet, please get in touch with us at
    How do I add additional credits or partners to my project?
    At this time, we can only assign one project owner to each project. Please include all of your additional information in the long form description for the judges.
    What should I say in the free-form question for the judges?
    That's entirely up to you. This is a space we've provided for you to elaborate on anything that you feel is important to help us understand your project better. For example, you can explain more about your project's uniqueness, ability to make an impact and your brief plan to get it done with the $50,000 prize.

    This is your opportunity to speak directly to the National Geographic judges that are selecting the finalists, and anything you think will help your case should be mentioned here, even if it's not something you've chosen to say in your video.
    How long should my answer to the free-form question be?
    We'd suggest at least a couple of sentences, but your answer can be as long or as short as you feel you need to make your case.
    Why isn't the free-form question showing up on my project page?
    The free-form question is meant as information for the judges only, so you can feel free to share personal or sensitive information that you might not want available for public consumption.


    Help! I've never made a video before. Where do I start?
    First, please know that this is absolutely NOT a test of your video production skills! Focus on telling the best story about yourself and your project possible—NOT props, lighting and fancy editing. Be authentic, compelling and concise. Recording a video selfie on your smart phone is fine. Your video can be as elaborate or as simple as you choose.
    What information should I include in my video?
    At a minimum, your video should introduce you and explain what your project idea is and how you are hoping to accomplish it. Show us your enthusiasm, and tell us why you think your project is worth doing. Tell us how your project pushes boundaries and charts new territory. Add in anything that you think could make your project easier to understand and get excited about. Ask people for their support, and thank them for taking the time to explore your project.
    Should I add music to my video?
    Don't use copyrighted music in your video without permission. Here are some music resources you can use for music that isn't copyrighted: SoundCloud, Vimeo Music Store, Free Music Archive, and ccMixter.
    What technical specs should the video have?
    Your video should not be larger than 75mb. For best results, use these specifications to encode your video:
    Video Format: H.264
    Video Codec: .mov or .mp4
    Video FPS: 29.97
    Video Max Bitrate: 5000 kbps
    Video Size (WxH): 1280x720
    Audio Codec: ACC
    Audio Sample Rate: 44.1
    Audio Max Bitrate: 192 kbsp
    Audio Channels: 2
    My video looks weird, what do I do?
    Unfortunately, we cannot change the quality of uploaded videos. If your video looks squished or stretched, let us know and we'll see if we can find a solution.
    Do people who appear in my videos have to sign a release?
    When you submit your video, you will be asked to agree to the terms and conditions and official rules which state that you are the original project creator and have full legal authority to upload all content. Seeking permission from anyone or any brands featured in your photo/video is your sole responsibility.


    I want to delete my project, what do I do?
    Email our community advisor at to delete your project.
    Can I edit my submission after I submit it?
    No, we're sorry, you can't edit your project after submission.
    My questions aren't showing up on my project page. Why?
    All questions are reviewed by our community manager before they appear on a project. Questions will not appear on your project page until it has been approved and you have answered the question.
    Someone submitted a question that I find offensive. What do I do?
    Flag the question or reach out to us at If someone submitted a problematic question to your project, simply don't answer the question in your admin section. No questions will appear on your project page until you answer them.
    Something great happened with my project! How do I update my page?
    You can't edit your project page, but you can answer questions. You're welcome to have a friend ask a question, or if you'd prefer, contact the community manager at Then you can add an answer in the Q&A section containing your news.


    Can I only vote for one project?
    When the finalists are announced, you are able to cast one vote per project per day.


    I am having trouble viewing the site. What browsers do you support?
  • IE 9, 10, 11 on Win7
  • Firefox (latest) on Win7 & MAC
  • Chrome (latest) on Win7 & MAC
  • Safari (latest) on MAC

  • Mobile:
  • iPhone 4(s)/5
  • Samsung Galaxy SII/III
  • Nexus 5

  • Tablet:
  • Nexus 10
  • iPad 2 / 3
  • Windows Surface RT
  • I am having trouble verifying my National Geographic Account. What should I do?
    My location is showing as invalid when I try to register. What should I do?
    I am having trouble creating an account or logging in. What should I do?
    Why do you have advisors and what do they do?
    The Expedition Granted advisors are "movers and shakers" that have successfully pushed boundaries and charted new territory within their respective fields. They are involved in the program to help inspire creative thinking and ideas, evangelize the program to their fans and followers, and help select the finalists. Having your video featured as an "Advisor Pick" has absolutely no bearing on whether or not you are selected as an Expedition Granted finalist.
    How are Jeep® and Dos Equis® involved in Expedition Granted?
    Jeep® and Dos Equis® are both proud partners of Expedition Granted and are honored to join in the search for the next generation of explorers. Throughout the contest, they will each be highlighting those submissions that best embody their unique brand spirit—i.e. "Most Restless" submissions for Jeep and "Most Interesting" submissions for Dos Equis®—to showcase on their respective pages. Having your video featured as a Jeep® or Dos Equis® video has absolutely no bearing on whether or not you are selected as an Expedition Granted finalist.
    How do I report a copyright or trademark violation?
    I'm a member of the press, who can I contact for more information?
    Thanks for your interest. Please contact Chris Albert at
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