Future Open Championship venues: 2024 and beyond

Tiger Woods

Tiger Woods last year crosses the Swilcan Bridge at St. Andrews during the Open Championship's second round.

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Do you believe in a relatively recent tradition? Or do you believe Tiger Woods?

Your answer could give you the next time the Open Championship is played at St. Andrews, and it helps our look here at future hosts of the last major championship of the year. 

On the custom side, from 1990 through 2015, the Open had been played at the Home of Golf every five years, with the cycle broken to accommodate the 150th playing of the tournament last year at the Scottish course. (The 2020 Open was scheduled for Royal St. George’s, but it was moved to 2021 due to the pandemic.) So one could deduct that the Open will be played at St. Andrews in 2027.

Or maybe not. 

Last year, Woods played in the much-celebrated event, bowed out after two rounds, and let this slip in his post-round press conference:

“Yes, it’s very emotional for me. I’ve been coming here since 1995, and I don’t know when — I think the next one comes around in what, 2030 — and I don’t know if I will be physically able to play by then.

“So to me it felt like this might have been my last British Open here at St Andrews. And the fans, the ovation and the warmth, it was an unbelievable feeling. I understand what Jack [Nicklaus] and Arnold [Palmer] had gone through in the past. I was kind of feeling that way there at the end. And just the collective warmth and understanding. They understand what golf’s all about and what it takes to be an Open champion.

“And I’ve been lucky enough and fortunate enough to have won this twice here. And it felt very emotional, just because I just don’t know what my health is going to be like. And I feel like I will be able to play future British Opens, but I don’t know if I’ll be able to play that long enough that when it comes back around here, will I still be playing?”

Interesting. If you’re doing the math, the 47-year-old Woods would be 51 in 2027, and 54 in 2030. Perhaps this influences the R&A’s decision, if it hasn’t already privately been made. 

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There are, though, three future sites locked — Royal Troon in 2024; Royal Portrush in 2025; and Royal Birkdale in 2026. Beyond that? The Open uses a rota for its event, and courses typically don’t go further than a decade without hosting. 

That being said, previous hosts Trump Turnberry and Muirfield haven’t held the tournament since 2009 and 2013, respectively. In the case of Turnberry, it’s due to the name that precedes it. “We have no plans to stage any of our championships at Turnberry and will not do so in the foreseeable future,” Martin Slumbers said in the wake of the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol. “We will not return until we are convinced that the focus will be on the championship, the players and the course itself, and we do not believe that is achievable in the current circumstances.”  

As for Muirfield, its membership infamously excluded women for centuries and failed to earn a two-thirds supermajority approval in early 2016. At that point, Slumbers said: “The Open is one of the world’s great sporting events, and going forward we will not stage the Championship at a venue that does not admit women as members.”  

When a vote was held one year later, though, the supermajority was achieved, and 12 female members were added in 2019, with that number now eclipsing 20. Could the club host again? Notably, last year it held the Women’s Open. 

This year’s tournament started Thursday at Royal Liverpool

Future Open Championship venues

2024 — Royal Troon 

2025 — Royal Portrush 

2026 — Royal Birkdale 

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Nick Piastowski

Nick Piastowski

Golf.com Editor

Nick Piastowski is a Senior Editor at Golf.com and Golf Magazine. In his role, he is responsible for editing, writing and developing stories across the golf space. And when he’s not writing about ways to hit the golf ball farther and straighter, the Milwaukee native is probably playing the game, hitting the ball left, right and short, and drinking a cold beer to wash away his score. You can reach out to him about any of these topics — his stories, his game or his beers — at nick.piastowski@golf.com.

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