Well, golf season is almost upon those of us in norther climes. It is not time to determine where we want to spend our hard cash to ensure we are receiving the most value for our buck. I have looked at my local courses and I believe I have chosen the one that best suits my needs. Have you?
I have a list of things factors that used to choose my home for the summer that has never failed. My list is very personal, but you might be considered them when making your selection:
Cost. I have to be able to afford the membership and any extra costs like bar tab, trail fees, cost of range galls etc. The highest or lowest priced course may not have the value I expect from my money. Ultimately, I do not want to be golf course poor.
Number of players. How many players are members at the course/ Does the green fee traffic over run the members? Are there too many tournaments? These seem like selfish questions, but there is no sense paying to play, if I cannot play because I cannot get a tee time. Additionally, the membership should be friendly. This helps get me get a fun game with strangers.
The Course. It needs to be challenging and offer something new most times I tee up. I like a course that is different from the white and blue tees. The yardage should range between 6200 and 6700 yards. I like a mixture of hazards and easy holes; small and large greens; and an opportunity to play with the risk/reward of some shots.
Proximity to my home. I do not want to spend hours on the road going and coming from the course. I want to spend my time playing golf not driving listening to the radio. I find that more than 30 minutes one way is a bit of a stretch for me. Now, I will travel a couple of hours to play a great course, but not on a regular basis.
Amenities. Does the golf course have a practice area or driving range? Does the course have a pro shop (tougher answer than one thinks)? Does the course have a clubhouse (again tougher answer than one thinks)? Is there a place to clean my clubs? Are there enough golf carts for the members? I think you get the point. The more amenities at the course the greater the value.
Each of the above factors have different weights for each course. However, the most important factor for me is always cost. I start to weigh the other factors to determine the overall value of my purchase. I am not adverse to changing courses after a year, but I have found that by using the above factors, my choices in the past have been very sound.
If you are wondering, I chose Osprey Links Golf Course as my home course. In varying degrees, it meets all my needs and the staff at the course are outstanding. This is a big bonus.
How do you pick your golf course?
I am a grateful golfer! See you on the links!