Six Tricks to Save Your Next Golf Trip
By Keith Stewart, PGA
As the colder winter months approach for a large majority of the United States, it makes sense to start thinking about a great golf trip. There are endless discussions on what makes a trip memorable. One thing we can all definitely agree on is forgetting a key item or encountering an aggravation can sour a well-anticipated sojourn.
PGA Coaches wear many hats. One of those roles is to plan successful golf excursions. In doing so, we have learned many things about golf travel. If you are planning a golf vacation this winter, take a moment and read this article. Print it out and keep it somewhere safe. These tricks might just save your trip!
1) Let’s start with the basics.
- Have you packed an extra pair of golf shoes, gloves or better yet a backup range finder battery? Nothing bothers us all more than not having something we keep in our golf locker, trunk, or garage. Don’t assume your golf bag has everything you need. Double check your supplies and make sure you’re prepared. Why extra shoes? Most golf trips involve multiple rounds per day. Changing your shoes and socks in between rounds on a day where you play 36 is a great feeling. It revitalizes the feet and you. Try it the next time you play two.
2) Make sure you check the weather.
- Sometimes we face unexpected weather in an area of the country that normally is quite warm and dry. I remember traveling to Scottsdale one year and it snowed. Packing a rain suit, umbrella and rain gloves can be very helpful. After all once you get there, rain or snow… you’re playing golf.
3) Protect the sticks
- If you have woods with adjustable heads, type into your phone the settings of those clubs. Then remove the heads and place them into your golf bag. Take the shafts and point them tip down into the bag. Sometimes packing for a golf trip isn’t about what we remember, we just need our clubs to get there safely. There’s a bonus to this move, by removing the heads you’ll have more room in the top of your golf travel bag!
4) Don’t overpack. You're coming home with more.
- Golfers love new gear. Traveling to a famous resort means you will probably pick up a new item or two. Stuffing that suitcase to maximum capacity leaves no room for extra articles on the return trip.
5) One way is the safest way.
- When possible, book a non-stop flight. This key is probably more important than ever. With all the company challenges airlines are facing, switching planes just raises the likelihood your clubs won’t make it on time to your destination. Who likes to change planes anyway? You want to enjoy your vacation and the best way to do that is by arriving with little or no aggravation. This tip helps ensure that.
6) Place your golf bag valuables in your carry-on bag.
- Rangefinders, bluetooth speakers, and expensive cigar lighters attract unnecessary attention. In 2021, multiple people will be going through your golf travel bag by the time it gets to your destination. The best strategy to keeping all your valuables safe is to keep them with you.
We all love a great golf trip. In many ways, it can be the highlight of our year if we are traveling to a sacred golf destination. Keep these tricks handy and feel free to write down a couple of your own on the same printed sheet. With a little preparation, you can quickly become a golf travel guru.
Keith Stewart is a 5-time award-winning PGA Professional with 25 years of experience in the golf industry. His network of players, coaches and insiders provide him with a unique perspective on the game. He's a writer on PGA.com and host of the ProShow on ESPN 920 AM Friday afternoons at 3:00pm EDT. Check out his PGA Coaching articles archived here or his conversations on air with this link to his website The ProShow.