Paying tribute to people and achievements using decorated coins has been a beloved American tradition for decades. Folklore traces the practice back to World War II, when an American pilot flashed his unit’s signature coin to French troops, thus proving that he wasn’t an enemy spy. His story quickly became a legend, and soon enough, every branch of the military used personalized coins to showcase their pride and victories. These cherished tokens came to be known as “challenge coins”, and their adoration lives on.
Today, custom challenge coins, also referred to as commemorative coins, are a traditional and elegant way to recognize, celebrate, and reward individuals and teams for their efforts in the workplace and organizations. These intricate and beautiful coins can capture a moment, event, or an important piece of history, all in one tiny and colorful space. Generally, the coins are no more than 2 inches in diameter and made of pewter, copper, or nickel. They typically feature an engraving of the organization's insignia, along with an engraved design and enamel highlights. Recognizing achievements with challenge coins is a cornerstone of recognition programs in a number of industries, including associations, finance, industry, the military, and the government.
While most recipients of custom commemorative coins are moved and honored, they’re often not sure how to display them in their offices or homes. Years ago, a government agency presented my husband and his colleagues with custom made challenge coins as recognition for contract work they had recently completed. The coins were in a small, round, and clear coin capsule that snapped around the coin.
Although my husband appreciated this gesture, in a somewhat anti-climatic fashion, the coin simply sat on his desk for a while. It started collecting dust, so he moved it to a desk drawer and ultimately to a storage box. The coin was very special to him, so he wanted to keep it, but he also didn’t know what to do with it.
No matter the occasion these custom commemorative coins are for, considering various challenge coin packaging and display options should be an integral part of your planning process. Offering recipients creative display options for challenge coins welcomes an opportunity to display their honor, extend the shelf life of these cherished coins, and remind them of accomplishments and ties to your organization.
Creative Display Options for Challenge Coins
The following is a collection of challenge coin packaging and display options. Our list starts with the most cost-effective solutions and works its way to deluxe custom made challenge coins. That way, you can consider options that would work best for your budget. This list is not exhaustive, but it’s a great place to spark inspiration if you’re looking to start recognizing achievements with challenge coins.
It’s worthwhile to note that many coin manufacturers offer standard plastic envelopes or velvet pouches as options for coin packaging. However, the focus of this article is on much more impactful and memorable solutions for your coin displays. We suggest working with an engagement agency, like E Group, to help develop the best solutions for your organization’s unique vision and needs.
Blister packaging with colorful messaging
Paper easels with integrated coin and messaging
Acetate frames display options
Custom packaging with foam inserts
Commemorative and Challenge Coin Display Cases
There are also many options for displaying commemorative coin collections. If your organization creates a coin series to commemorate annual events or various achievements, you’ll want to consider adding the display as part of your program. Many of E Group’s clients elect to present the display to first or second time recipients. Recipients then work to complete their collections over time by achieving organizational goals or participating in annual events. Below we’ve features some examples of collections for group coin display.
Commemorative coin collection display
Premier wood presentation mounts
At E Group, we understand that your commemorative coin project is extremely valuable to your organization and to recipients of your coins. And if you need help, we are happy to spur ideas for your next challenge coin, commemorative coin collection, or coin display design.
*Contact E Group at [email protected] for specific pricing on the coin options featured in this blog.