Jump to content

Welcome. You are currently viewing the forum as a guest which does not give you access to all the great features at GolfWRX such as viewing all the images, interacting with members, access to all forums and eligiblility to win free giveaways. Registration is fast, simple and absolutely free. Create a FREE GolfWRX account here.

* - - - - 1 votes

Why don't U.S. Private clubs allow outside play like the Scottish clubs do?


102 replies to this topic

#91 raynorfan1

raynorfan1

    Major Winner

  • Advanced Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,628 posts
  •  
  • Member #: 119065
  • Joined: 12/17/2010
GolfWRX Likes : 588

Posted 28 August 2017 - 08:10 PM

View Postchili_dip, on 28 August 2017 - 07:40 PM, said:

Question on etiquette for private clubs.  Is it expected if the courtesy is extended; is it a normal ask for those who were extended the courtesy to buy lunch/drinks in the grill room or a shirt from the shop?

It would strike me as odd if I were asked to buy something incremental to the round. It would actually seem less strange to me if, as an unaccompanied guest, I wasn't allowed to use the dining room.


Remove This Advertisement Viewing As Guest

    GolfWRX Forums

    Advertisement


1

#92 chili_dip

chili_dip

    Member

  • Advanced Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 79 posts
  •  
  • Member #: 127450
  • Joined: 04/25/2011
  • Location:Myrtle Beach, SC
GolfWRX Likes : 17

Posted 28 August 2017 - 08:20 PM

Raynor,

I'm not used to private clubs so I wasn't sure if there were any unwritten rules like that.  I'm getting ready to play a round at a very nice CC and wanted to make sure I had all my ducks in a row.  (I actually started a thread). I just didn't want to commit a social blunder.  Thanks for the reply!

Edited by chili_dip, 28 August 2017 - 08:21 PM.


2

#93 Pepperturbo

Pepperturbo

    Highland Park Dark Origins

  • Advanced Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 14,598 posts
  •  
  • Member #: 14656
  • Joined: 05/09/2006
  • Location:Midwest and Southwest
  • Handicap:lowS
GolfWRX Likes : 2374

Posted 29 August 2017 - 03:28 PM

View Postchili_dip, on 28 August 2017 - 07:40 PM, said:

View PostPepperturbo, on 28 August 2017 - 01:22 PM, said:

It was common at my last two clubs for our traveling members to ask our head professionals to call certain clubs in the area where they travel for permission to play.  Except for a limited few really high end clubs such as Sunnylands in Rancho Mirage, play request was always granted.  Cost was discounted, sometimes only cart fee.  Presuming acceptable in the club charter, its good business for many reasons.  However, if the person requesting play is not a member of a private club request would be rejected.
Pepper,

Question on etiquette for private clubs.  Is it expected if the courtesy is extended; is it a normal ask for those who were extended the courtesy to buy lunch/drinks in the grill room or a shirt from the shop?

When playing inter-club team golf, typically the hosting member / team picks up lunch, etc., after the round.  But playing as a traveling visitor at a private club only necessitates paying their fee.  Some clubs don't accept cash or CC's anywhere in club house... Only member numbers are used.

Edited by Pepperturbo, 31 August 2017 - 02:59 PM.

Titleist 917D2 10.5, Fujikura Fuel 60 S, Tour Spec
Titleist 917F2, 15*, Original Blueboard 83 x5ct, S
Titleist 716T-MB 17* 2 iron, PX Flighted 6.0
Titleist 716CB 3-PW, KBS Tour S+ & $-Taper S
SM6 F-52*, KBS $-Taper S
SM6 M-58*, DGS200
ProV1 & ProV1X
SC California Monterey

3

#94 Tim Gavrich

Tim Gavrich

    Golf Travel Guru

  • Featured Writer
  • 144 posts
  •  
  • Member #: 115260
  • Joined: 09/22/2010
  • Location:Vero Beach, FL
  • Handicap:0
GolfWRX Likes : 60

Posted 30 August 2017 - 10:10 AM

To pervert a Groucho Marx quote, I wouldn't want to be a member of a club who wouldn't have someone like me as a guest!

That said, I respect private clubs to make their own decisions about whether and how they accept outside play. As has been said in here, the higher-end the American private club, the less there is to be gained by allowing outside - especially unaccompanied - play. That's fair enough.

But, I would venture to say that there are a lot of more middle-tier private clubs that might be able to score some worthwhile extra revenue by allowing outside play on, say, Mondays through Wednesdays. It's not as if there's going to be a horde of people each one of those days who will disrupt the member flow and damage the course. And besides, some of those visitors might end up loving the course/experience so much that they become bona fide members, which is something most American private clubs want.

I think the competitive context of club membership in the UK is a massive factor in the difference in club cultures between it and the US. In the UK, people have their home courses, but there are ample opportunities to play competitions at other clubs, usually for next to nothing, purely because there's that spirit of reciprocity. Those opportunities are more plentiful because more than being a member of a certain club/course, golfers feel a larger camaraderie as members of this culture of competitive golf. I think this is something we should strive for in the US. The more competitive golf (and I'm talking largely informal fun net-type events) we can get people playing, the more often they'll want to play.

Edited by Tim Gavrich, 30 August 2017 - 10:11 AM.

Managing Editor, GolfVacationInsider.com

Srixon Z 765 Driver, 9*
Srixon Z F65 15* & 19*
TM V-Steel 21*
Titleist 710 MB 4-PW
Cleveland RTG 52* and 58*
Revolving door of putters

4

#95 Soxfan21

Soxfan21

    Member

  • Advanced Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 236 posts
  •  
  • Member #: 290765
  • Joined: 01/07/2014
  • Location:Chicago South Suburbs
  • Handicap:5.2
GolfWRX Likes : 53

Posted 30 August 2017 - 09:08 PM

As has been stated before, a lot of clubs do not need the extra revenue that a few golfers a week would bring in.  I belong to a middle tier club just south of Chicago, and financially we are doing very good.  I play a lot during the week days because I work a lot of weekends.  We do have a lot of outings on Monday's, as most clubs in the area do, and I have noticed that when I play on Tuesdays, the fairways have numerous divots that are not filled or replaced, and there are numerous ball marks on the greens that are not repaired.  This is not really a problem from Thursday through Sundays as most members take the time to replace divots and ball marks.  Also, the main reason that I joined a club, is the pace of play. 5 hour rounds, which were really 6 if you count range time, were getting tiresome, especially for me having a 3 and 1 1/2 year old at home  If I play by myslef at my club, I can play 18 in about 2 hours.  If I am with a group on weekdays it takes no more than 3 hours to play 18.  If the public was allowed on the course, I'm sure that this time would increase, maybe not by much, but I know it would be more time than it is currently.  My club is very welcome to guests, and if you are interested in joining, they usually offer a free round of golf to entice you.  As for reciprocals, we can play 3 other private courses in the area and also have competitions with other clubs.  I think that private clubs are private for a reason.  People join them knowing that only a small number of other golfers will be there, pace of play is excellent, and the course is usually in prestine condition.

In The Bag:

Epic Sub Zero 65 Gram Fujikura Pro
Epic Sub Zero 80 Gram Aldila rogue
816 H1 21 degree Motore Speeder 8.8
716 AP 2 4-PW TT DG AMT S400
SM6 50, 54, 58 Wedges
Bettinardi Inovai 3.0

5

#96 shotmark

shotmark

    Tour Winner

  • Advanced Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 581 posts
  •  
  • Member #: 102090
  • Joined: 01/15/2010
  • Location:West Yorkshire, England.
  • Handicap:9
GolfWRX Likes : 199

Posted 31 August 2017 - 08:37 AM

View Postandrue, on 24 August 2017 - 08:47 AM, said:

View PostGolfnuck, on 18 August 2017 - 10:54 AM, said:

You state you would prefer the UK model but it looks to me the average US golfer has more access to golf courses than the UK golfer. US - 91% UK - 74% ((71%*(65+26))+3+6).
I'm not sure how valid that point is. The UK is a smaller country with a higher population density than the US. Presumably also a higher golf course density. If we assume that most golfers are prepared to drive up to an hour each way for a social match I'd guess that a lot of UK golfers probably have a choice of a couple of dozen 'local clubs'. I live an hour from London and that's about what I have.

If we extend that to two hours each way to travel for a competition that's going to be several dozen clubs. For a comp I'd be prepared to drive almost anywhere in central and southern England so that probably covers two thirds of the courses in the country.

For a weekend trip only Scotland is really impractical for me to drive to as that's over six hours away.

So yes - you have more courses but it'd be interesting to see how many 'local' courses UK players have compared to US.

As for accesibility - I only know of one club around here that is sometimes a bit tricky for non-members to play. But even they accept bookings without asking for anything more than a name. They just warn you that members can bump you off your tee-time. But everywhere else it's no different to booking any other service. You pay your money and you roll up to the first tee.

Going back to my first point - my Buddy and I are members of two clubs (I'm a member of both as I have a points membership with his). But for our regular match about half the time we go to another course. Any course. We have a large choice and we just call them up or book online. We play our own courses a lot but there are so many others within range that we rarely play each of those more than two or three times a year.

I'm in Yorkshire.  We have 156 eighteen hole courses and well over 30 9 hole courses (and a 6 hole course)  All of which can be played by non members including three former Ryder Cup venues.

6

#97 rkristopheranderson

rkristopheranderson

    Advanced

  • Advanced Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 362 posts
  •  
  • Member #: 131947
  • Joined: 06/29/2011
  • Location:NC
  • Handicap:3.4
GolfWRX Likes : 49

Posted 31 August 2017 - 08:54 AM

View Postraynorfan1, on 24 August 2017 - 02:29 PM, said:

One of the things that's clear from this and other threads (I'm thinking of the recent "juniors in club championships" thread) is that the very concept of a "club" is very different in North America and in the U.K.

In the U.K., the primary purpose of a golf "club" is to provide the infrastructure for competitive play. Honestly, I think UK clubs look more like we would call a "league" or "golf association" in the US.

In North America, golf courses are largely one of many amenities provided at Country Clubs and the primary purpose of the club is social - and intentionally exclusionary. When we think of "clubs", we think of these exclusionary clubs that own golf courses (which they aggressively manage access to). When you think about a "club" in UK terms, it's much more focused on competitive golf than anything else.

Yes, this.

Clubs in the US and UK play differnet social roles historically. More to the point, the classic US country clubs built 1880s-1920s emulated what Americans thought the UK example taught them about exclusivity and respectability. At a time when America created millionaires at an unpredecented rate, the new upper class looked for ways to define/justify the new social positions--in part by creating exclusive clubs.  Class was different in the UK and didn't have the same type of dependence--it was unbecoming for the local Lord and family too seperate from everyone else.
Ping G25 @ 9degrees/TFC 189D stiff
Callaway XHot2 pro/13.5 degrees/Aldila TG stiff
Titleist 913H/19 degrees/Aldila TG stiff
Ping s55/4-W/KBS Tour R+ [ .5 long]
Glide 50 w. Wrx grind
Vokey SM5 54-10/S grind
Vokey SM4 60-04
Scotty Cameron California Monterrey

7

#98 Bluefan75

Bluefan75

    Major Winner

  • Advanced Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 3,084 posts
  •  
  • Member #: 56847
  • Joined: 05/30/2008
  • Location:London, ON
GolfWRX Likes : 750

Posted 31 August 2017 - 09:05 AM

View PostSoxfan21, on 30 August 2017 - 09:08 PM, said:

As has been stated before, a lot of clubs do not need the extra revenue that a few golfers a week would bring in.  I belong to a middle tier club just south of Chicago, and financially we are doing very good.  I play a lot during the week days because I work a lot of weekends.  We do have a lot of outings on Monday's, as most clubs in the area do, and I have noticed that when I play on Tuesdays, the fairways have numerous divots that are not filled or replaced, and there are numerous ball marks on the greens that are not repaired.  This is not really a problem from Thursday through Sundays as most members take the time to replace divots and ball marks.  Also, the main reason that I joined a club, is the pace of play. 5 hour rounds, which were really 6 if you count range time, were getting tiresome, especially for me having a 3 and 1 1/2 year old at home  If I play by myslef at my club, I can play 18 in about 2 hours.  If I am with a group on weekdays it takes no more than 3 hours to play 18.  If the public was allowed on the course, I'm sure that this time would increase, maybe not by much, but I know it would be more time than it is currently.  My club is very welcome to guests, and if you are interested in joining, they usually offer a free round of golf to entice you.  As for reciprocals, we can play 3 other private courses in the area and also have competitions with other clubs.  I think that private clubs are private for a reason.  People join them knowing that only a small number of other golfers will be there, pace of play is excellent, and the course is usually in prestine condition.

Bingo.  There is too much money paid by members for this benefit to allow it to be stripped away by a bunch of people who have no skin in the game.  

If you start opening the gates, even for "extra revenue", then why should I bother paying so much money when I can pay a lot less and deal with the same hassles?

8

#99 Nuggets

Nuggets

    I'm not the messiah!

  • Advanced Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,194 posts
  •  
  • Member #: 328287
  • Joined: 07/21/2014
  • Handicap:bad
GolfWRX Likes : 628

Posted 31 August 2017 - 09:22 AM

On the price point again, check the prices at these clubs for a DAY fee! Thats as many rounds as you can fit in throughout the day (lets say you manage 3 with a buggy)

Try doing that on the same money as you'd have to pay for a comparable course in the US, say Blackpage? Or TPC Sawgrass

So;

£235 for a full days playing through the week plus caddy or cart or both, or £170-£195 for one round http://www.prestwick...al-information/

£230 or £300 for one or two rounds, not quite as good value but still better than a US private I'd imagine http://www.muirfield...k/visitors.aspx

Troon has a much greater variable due to the courses https://www.royaltro...green-fees-2017

And Turnberry does too but you'd only really be comparing the Ailsa http://www.turnberry...id=100034&vnf=1



Point here being excluding St. Andrews, you cant compare value for money.

And lets say a non championship level course.....well thats anywhere from £25 - £150 for a round with £150 being the really really high end private non championship


TPC is $495 or £385 for a green fee

I know its not the same type of course as those listed but its a championship course which is the thing to compare, the UK ones are most probably a lot easier to get onto too and as stated all within a much closer proximity so you can quite easily play a different course and part of the country each day if you had a weeks holiday

For the recreational player (muni type) you'd be looking at a course like this http://golflangdon.c.../green-fees.php
Callaway FT9 TA TP 9.5* - BiMatrix X in neon pink
Nike Vr Pro Ltd 9.5* - Aldila NV 95X
TEE CB2 - DG X100........yeah thats right its steel.
Irons - 2-3 MP37's - X100's
Irons - 4-PW MP68's - X100's
Wedges - Scratch 53* & 58* S400
Putter - Byron Morgan 006

My WITB Link - http://www.golfwrx.c...a-students-bag/

9

#100 Cspackler6

Cspackler6

    Member

  • Advanced Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 137 posts
  •  
  • Member #: 315063
  • Joined: 05/15/2014
  • Location:Michigan
GolfWRX Likes : 23

Posted 08 September 2017 - 10:23 AM

This topic is really odd to me and a bit lacking logic. I would love to walk on to any course in the U.S. and play for free. Of course, I wound need to be the only one offered this luxury or it won't work. The majority of private clubs can be played nearly as often as anyone wants. There are very few that are truly exclusive. Just need to pay the membership fees for most. Are the membership fees out of range of a lot of people's disposable income, yes. That is the point. The market has dictated that. If Augusta wanted a packed course 24/7 they would put up lights and lower the $/round to accomplish it. However, they want it to be nearly untouched as much as possible so it is set up to accomplish that. The vast majority of courses in U.S. are semi-private so you can choose to be a member or simply pay daily fee because it is what that course sees as its best option. In my area some old private courses that have had to turn semi-private for extra revenue is last 10-15yrs. I know one was sold to a developer for a new subdivision and another can hardly get people to pay $35/18. People will only pay what they are willing to pay and it's that simple. I beleive uk is about the size of the state of Michigan, and MI has a decent amount of courses. Not nearly as many as in the uk. So course saturation  plays a big factor IMO.


Remove This Advertisement Viewing As Guest

    GolfWRX Forums

    Advertisement


10

#101 andrue

andrue

    Advanced

  • Advanced Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 335 posts
  •  
  • Member #: 458618
  • Joined: 03/13/2017
  • Location:South Northants, UK
  • Handicap:23
GolfWRX Likes : 124

Posted 08 September 2017 - 10:51 AM

I'm glad we don't have the US club system. I love the fact that my buddy and I can hold our weekly match at pretty much any course in our area. I just pick a course I fancy and call them up (*). Same deal when going on holiday. I've been to various parts of the UK and it didn't even occur to me to check first. Just arrive, unpack then trawl the web looking for nearby courses.

The only time I'd check first is if I intended to play somewhere like St Andrews or The Belfry. Even then I'd only expect them to want to verify my handicap and I might struggle to get suitable date. But for 99% of courses - meh. Book a tee time and pay the fee when you arrive. Around here it's usually around £25 ($30) for 18 holes.

(*)Two weeks ago it was Kirtlington. Last week Helidon Lakes, this week Banbury Golf Club. Variety is the spice of life, I say :)

Edited by andrue, 08 September 2017 - 10:55 AM.

Callaway XR Driver.
Callaway Big Bertha OS Hybrids (3/4/5)
Callaway Big Bertha OS Irons (6/7/8/9/PW/AW/SW)
Cleveland LW
Ghost Spider Si 72 Putter
Callaway Super Soft Yellow (White in winter).

11

#102 Cspackler6

Cspackler6

    Member

  • Advanced Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 137 posts
  •  
  • Member #: 315063
  • Joined: 05/15/2014
  • Location:Michigan
GolfWRX Likes : 23

Posted 08 September 2017 - 11:59 AM

From my perspective it is much the same here. Granted I don't have access to every course in a given area. Never has it happened where we could not get on because most are private. Roughly 1 out of 10 courses are private so it is not an issue. Given the large area difference between UK and US I don't feel we are comparing apples to apple here. Within the US alone there is tremendous differences between # of courses, golfers, cost and value in a given area. In my state alone this is the case. Private courses today in Michigan are private because there is a demand for them. I would guess that if the UK closed half their golf courses tomorrow it would move more to how it is here. Not saying for better or worse...just sayin.

12

#103 Pepperturbo

Pepperturbo

    Highland Park Dark Origins

  • Advanced Members
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 14,598 posts
  •  
  • Member #: 14656
  • Joined: 05/09/2006
  • Location:Midwest and Southwest
  • Handicap:lowS
GolfWRX Likes : 2374

Posted 08 September 2017 - 12:57 PM

View PostTim Gavrich, on 30 August 2017 - 10:10 AM, said:

To pervert a Groucho Marx quote, I wouldn't want to be a member of a club who wouldn't have someone like me as a guest!

That said, I respect private clubs to make their own decisions about whether and how they accept outside play. As has been said in here, the higher-end the American private club, the less there is to be gained by allowing outside - especially unaccompanied - play. That's fair enough.

But, I would venture to say that there are a lot of more middle-tier private clubs that might be able to score some worthwhile extra revenue by allowing outside play on, say, Mondays through Wednesdays. It's not as if there's going to be a horde of people each one of those days who will disrupt the member flow and damage the course. And besides, some of those visitors might end up loving the course/experience so much that they become bona fide members, which is something most American private clubs want.

I think the competitive context of club membership in the UK is a massive factor in the difference in club cultures between it and the US. In the UK, people have their home courses, but there are ample opportunities to play competitions at other clubs, usually for next to nothing, purely because there's that spirit of reciprocity. Those opportunities are more plentiful because more than being a member of a certain club/course, golfers feel a larger camaraderie as members of this culture of competitive golf. I think this is something we should strive for in the US. The more competitive golf (and I'm talking largely informal fun net-type events) we can get people playing, the more often they'll want to play.

I am acquainted with one guy that owns three courses.  Each course has been private since the beginning and middle of the road cost wise.  When he bought the 3rd, it was ladened with red ink, party due to difficulty.  People joined and later quit.

To the bold point, he opened up each course to some public play with hopes of offsetting loses of one course.  Members made it known they didn't foot the cost of joining a private club to play with outsiders.  To make matters worse, realizing cost of maintenance of two courses has been eating at margins, he's leaned outside players don't care for the course like members, and spent little to no additional money.  He's now rethinking his decision in the matter.

Edited by Pepperturbo, 08 September 2017 - 01:04 PM.

Titleist 917D2 10.5, Fujikura Fuel 60 S, Tour Spec
Titleist 917F2, 15*, Original Blueboard 83 x5ct, S
Titleist 716T-MB 17* 2 iron, PX Flighted 6.0
Titleist 716CB 3-PW, KBS Tour S+ & $-Taper S
SM6 F-52*, KBS $-Taper S
SM6 M-58*, DGS200
ProV1 & ProV1X
SC California Monterey

13



0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users

GolfWRX Sponsors