For those interested in taking up the sport, "how expensive is golf?" is a natural question to ask. Because of the initial investment and ongoing fees, golf is one of the most expensive sports to play. However, the cost shouldn't discourage you. When you know the answer to the question "why is golf so expensive?" you can find ways to save money and make the pastime more affordable.
How Expensive is Golf?
There is no set answer to the question "how expensive is golf?" The cost associated with golf will depend on what equipment you purchase and how often you choose to play. New players may not need to purchase all the equipment required for the game, and expensive club memberships aren't necessary for the occasional golfer.
Why is Golf So Expensive?
By looking at the various costs one by one, you can gain a thorough understanding of the question. Read on to learn about the items that add up to a golfer's total price tag and discover some cost-saving tips.
Golf clubs vary widely in price. An entry-level beginner's set starts at around $150 but can cost as much as $1,000 depending on the quality of the clubs and how many there are in the set. Higher-end sets geared toward intermediate to advanced golfers often cost $2,000 or more. If you're new to the game, you can reduce costs by purchasing a driver and a few of the most commonly used clubs, which include:
- 2 Fairway Woods
- 2 Hybrids
- 5 iron-PW
- Gap Wedge
- Sand Wedge
- Lob Wedge
Renting clubs is another way to save until you determine which ones you reach for most frequently on the course.
Although not mandatory for a game, golf apparel can boost your performance on the course by increasing your range of motion and reducing distractions by wicking away perspiration or regulating your body temperature. Quality golf apparel can also help you stay warm in the winter, so you can get more out of the clubs and other equipment you've invested in. Year-round, clothes for golf can protect you from UV rays that cause sunburn and contribute to some types of skin cancer.
Here at Devereux, we make it affordable to build a basic golf wardrobe with a diverse assortment of styles packed with technical features. Some pieces to consider include:
- Golf polos: cost around $65
- Golf tees: costs range from around $40 to $50
- Pullovers and sweatshirts: costs range from around $60 to $90
- Shorts: costs range from around $55 to $75
- Pants: costs range from around $75 to $90
Golf shoes increase traction to help you maintain a stable footing while you swing. Prices usually start around $65 and can be as much as $300 or more. Although shoes designed specifically for golf can be beneficial, they're not essential. Beginners and occasional golfers can simply wear standard sneakers or tennis shoes and invest in a pair in the future.
Greens fees are the expense that you pay to play a round of golf. Average prices depend upon geographic location and the type of course.
- Municipal courses: these small courses owned by cities and situated in public parks are usually the least expensive options. A survey conducted by Golf Weekly found that the average cost of an 18-hole round was just $10.
- Public courses: usually larger in size and located in more scenic areas, public golf courses tend to cost a little more but are still relatively economical. The average price for a round on an older course is usually around $40 to $50, while newer public courses may charge around $60 to $70. Prestigious public courses that have previously hosted PGA and LPGA tournaments may have greens fees over $100.
- Semi-private courses: semi-private courses offer memberships for unlimited golfing but also allow the public to book tee times. Small, older courses may cost less than $100 to play, and the most exclusive ones often set their greens fees at $500 or more.
- Private courses: private courses are only open to members. Membership fees for both semi-private and private golf clubs cost anywhere from $3,000 to $10,000 per year. Some also require you to pay a one-time initiation fee, which may be a lot more than the annual membership. For example, the ultra-exclusive Augusta National Golf Club has an initiation fee of $500,000.
As you can see, where you choose to play can have a dramatic impact on the answer to the question "is golf an expensive hobby?" While you master the basics, you may want to stick to municipal and public courses. If you get serious about the pastime and play frequently, a golf club membership may save you money in the long run.
Navigating the Course
To make your way around the course, you have three options:
Renting a Motorized Golf Cart
At some courses, the cost of a ride-on motorized golf cart rental is included with the greens fees. Others charge a separate fee for the rental. Courses may charge anywhere from $25 to $150 for a rental. Some set their rates by the hour.
Buying a Golf Push Cart
Strolling the course allows you to reap the full fitness benefits of golf. For frequent golfers, buying a pushcart to transport clubs is often the most cost-effective option. Prices range from around $100 to $300.
Renting a Golf Push Cart
Beginner and occasional golfers can reduce costs by renting a pushcart. Most courses charge $5 to $10. However, not all facilities have them for rent, so make sure to check before you visit.
Expenses Should Not Discourage Your Love of Golf
Although golf is an expensive sport, you don't have to let the price be a barrier to your enjoyment of the hobby. As you can see, savvy golfers can find ways to minimize the cost. Shopping at Devereux is one smart way to save. We've recently made changes that allow us to drop new products more frequently and sell all our apparel without unnecessary markups. We also have a wide selection of affordable golfing accessories like head covers, golf towels, hats, and more. We are fully committed to helping ensure that everyone with a love of golf can afford to dress their best on and off the course.
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