6 questions to answer when planning your golf trip

golfers walking

Golf getaways involve a lot of moving parts. Here are six questions to consider as you plan for your next big getaway with your buddies.

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Good news, everyone: Summer golf is right around the corner, and our summer trips package has you covered. Over the next week, our experts will name their favorite courses and resorts, we’ll look at the newest style trends, help you plan your next buddies’ trip, introduce you to people who can help you plan your golf getaways and more. The goal here? To educate and motivate you for your next golf trip. So read up, then grab your clubs and bags.

MORE: 8 amazing family-friendly golf resorts worth visiting this summer | 20 of our staffers’ favorite summer golf courses | 8 smart essentials to stash in your golf bag this summer


Planning a golf trip is like prepping for a golf shot: there’s a lot to ponder. But unlike your swing, a golf trip isn’t something you can really overthink — because the details you dial in now are pretty much guaranteed to pay off later. Here are six questions to consider as you map your getaway.

Who’s your crew?

Traveling with your buddies is not at all the same as traveling with your colleagues, which is different from traveling with your spouse. The relationships you have with the people on the trip, and the seriousness of the golf they play, are like your stance and your grip: they influence every move that you make next.

What’s your budget?

Golf trips range in their extravagance from helicopter rides to your next tee time to packaged stay-and-plays in Myrtle Beach. Prices vary with them. Do a breakdown of the costs and make sure everyone is comfortable with them. That accounting shouldn’t end at tee times and accommodations. It should include add-ons such as post-arrival transport and meals, along with an understanding of how they’ll be divided. Things can get awkward when, for instance, one person in your party wants to drink Two Buck Chuck and another keeps ordering Cult Cabernet.

three men walk on a golf course
4 keys for booking the perfect golf trip with your buddies
By: Josh Sens

How golf-y is the trip?

Is this a week-long, dawn-to-dusk death march that doesn’t really end until someone slips a disc or suffers cardiac arrest? Or a leisurely escape with a single round per day and spa treatments before dinner? Do you plan on taking carts? Hiring caddies? Different golf resorts have different target markets, with amenities to match. Pinpointing the priorities of your group will help you pick a destination that suits you best.

How competitive will it be?

The golf-y-ness of a trip is often related to gamble-y-ness. Will you be playing money matches? Competing for pride? Keeping it to no-stakes hit-and-giggle? Not everyone in your group has to be on the same page (there’s almost always someone who’s more cutthroat than the rest) but you should all be working from a similar playbook.

What type of travel are you up for?

They say that it’s the journey, not the destination. But let’s get real: the destination matters, in part because it shapes the type of journey you have to make. A short drive? An overnight flight? Time and cost are important considerations. So are logistics, like the ease of bringing your clubs along (you might want to ship them, or rent at the course). And getting there is only half the battle. When the final putt drops, you still have to get back. 

What are you packing?

Balls. Gloves. Sunscreen. Extra socks. Those are just some of the basics. But it’s best to go beyond them. Lip balm. Advil. Bandaids. Rain gear, too, unless you know that you can count on dry conditions. Maybe a flask. Books could be written (and, in fact, they have) on how to pack. Many comprehensive articles on packing for a golf trip have been published, too.

Josh Sens

Golf.com Contributor

A golf, food and travel writer, Josh Sens has been a GOLF Magazine contributor since 2004 and now contributes across all of GOLF’s platforms. His work has been anthologized in The Best American Sportswriting. He is also the co-author, with Sammy Hagar, of Are We Having Any Fun Yet: the Cooking and Partying Handbook.