HomeBeginner’s Guide20 Ways to Play Golf Cheap

20 Ways to Play Golf Cheap

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Golf, often seen as an expensive sport, doesn’t have to break the bank. With some creativity and smart planning, you can enjoy this rewarding game without draining your wallet. Here are 20 practical tips to help you play golf affordably.

1. Utilize Public Courses

Public golf courses typically offer lower green fees than private clubs. Many municipalities maintain excellent courses that are well-kept and challenging. These courses often have discounted rates for residents, so take advantage of local facilities to save money while enjoying quality golfing experiences.

Public Courses

2. Play During Off-Peak Hours

Golf courses often have lower rates during off-peak hours, such as weekday afternoons or early mornings. By avoiding peak times like weekends and holidays, you can enjoy significant savings. Look for twilight rates, which offer discounted prices for rounds played later in the day.


3. Book Online for Discounts

Many golf courses offer online booking discounts. Websites and apps like GolfNow, TeeOff, and Groupon often have special deals and promotions. Booking your tee times through these platforms can result in substantial savings, making your round of golf much more affordable.

online booking

4. Join a Golf Association

Joining a golf association can provide access to member-only discounts and special rates at various courses. Associations like the USGA or regional golf clubs often have partnerships with courses that offer reduced fees for members, along with other benefits such as tournaments and networking opportunities.

5. Purchase a Discount Card

Many regions offer discount cards that provide reduced rates at multiple golf courses. These cards, available for purchase annually, can pay for themselves after just a few rounds. Check with local golf courses or online for availability and participating courses.

Discount Card

6. Invest in a Membership

If you play frequently, consider investing in a membership at a local course. Many courses offer memberships with unlimited play or reduced green fees. While the upfront cost may seem high, it often results in long-term savings, especially if you play regularly.

7. Buy Used or Discounted Equipment

Golf equipment can be expensive, but you can save by purchasing used or discounted gear. Check online marketplaces, golf stores, and pro shops for deals on clubs, bags, and accessories. Pre-owned equipment in good condition can provide the same performance as new items at a fraction of the cost.


8. Borrow or Rent Equipment

If you’re new to golf or don’t play frequently, consider borrowing clubs from friends or family. Many courses also offer rental sets for a reasonable fee. This way, you can enjoy the game without the significant investment in equipment until you’re sure you want to commit to buying your own.

9. Take Advantage of Free Clinics

Many golf courses and driving ranges offer free clinics for beginners or those looking to improve their game. These clinics provide valuable instruction without the cost of private lessons. Check with local courses or community centers for available programs and schedules.

10. Practice at Driving Ranges

Hone your skills at driving ranges instead of paying for a full round of golf. Driving ranges offer affordable rates for buckets of balls, allowing you to practice your swing, accuracy, and distance. Some ranges also have putting greens and chipping areas to work on your short game.

11. Walk the Course

Save on cart fees by walking the course instead of renting a golf cart. Walking not only reduces your costs but also provides excellent exercise. Invest in a good-quality golf bag with comfortable straps or a pushcart to make carrying your clubs easier.

Walk the Course

12. Share a Cart

If walking the course isn’t an option, share a cart with a playing partner. Splitting the cost of the cart fee can halve your expenses while still allowing you to enjoy the convenience of a cart. Coordinate with friends or fellow golfers to share the ride and the savings.

Share a Cart

13. Play Nine Holes Instead of Eighteen

Opt for a nine-hole round instead of a full eighteen holes to save money and time. Many courses offer reduced rates for nine-hole rounds, making it a budget-friendly option. This is especially convenient for beginners or those with busy schedules looking for a quick golf fix.

14. Look for Junior or Senior Discounts

Many golf courses offer discounted rates for juniors and seniors. If you fall into these age categories, inquire about special pricing. These discounts can make playing golf much more affordable, and some courses even have special days or times when these rates are available.

15. Participate in Local Tournaments

Local golf tournaments often have lower entry fees and can be a fun way to compete and meet other golfers. Look for charity events or amateur tournaments that offer prizes and a great experience without the high costs of professional-level competitions. It’s a win-win situation.

16. Use Online Coupons and Deals

Search for online coupons and deals before booking your round. Websites like RetailMeNot and Coupons.com frequently have discount codes for golf equipment and green fees. Signing up for email newsletters from your favorite courses can also provide exclusive deals and promotions.

17. Practice with DIY Drills

Improve your game at home with DIY practice drills instead of paying for expensive lessons. Set up a putting green in your backyard or use a net for driving practice. Many online resources and instructional videos can guide you through effective drills to enhance your skills.

18. Play Par-3 Courses

Par-3 courses, which consist of shorter holes, are often cheaper than full-size courses. These courses are great for practicing your short game and enjoying a quick round of golf. They are also less intimidating for beginners and can be a fun, affordable alternative to standard courses.

19. Volunteer at Golf Events

Volunteering at golf events can provide opportunities to play for free or at reduced rates. Many tournaments and charity events need volunteers to assist with various tasks, and in return, they often offer complimentary rounds of golf or other perks. It’s a great way to give back and save money.

20. Join a Golf League

Joining a local golf league can provide access to discounted rates at participating courses. Leagues often negotiate lower green fees for their members and offer regular, organized play. This can be a cost-effective way to play more frequently and improve your game in a social setting.


Golf doesn’t have to be an expensive hobby. With a little creativity and resourcefulness, you can enjoy the game without spending a fortune. From finding affordable equipment and apparel to choosing budget-friendly courses and leveraging technology, there are countless ways to play golf cheaply. So, grab your clubs and hit the green—without breaking the bank!


1. What’s the Best Way to Find Cheap Golf Equipment?

Check out second-hand stores, online marketplaces, and discount sporting goods stores. You can often find lightly used gear at a fraction of the price.

2. Are Public Courses as Good as Private Clubs?

Absolutely! Many public courses are well-maintained and offer a great golfing experience at a lower cost.

3. How Can I Improve My Game Without Expensive Lessons?

Utilize free online resources like YouTube, join group classes or clinics, and practice at public driving ranges.

4. Can Golf Be a Social Sport Without Spending Much?

Yes, join local golf communities, participate in social media groups, and take advantage of group rates and family discounts.

5. What’s the Most Cost-Effective Way to Maintain My Equipment?

Learn to clean and maintain your equipment yourself, look for affordable repair services, and take good care of your gear to extend its life.

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