Golfers are an indiscernable crowd, they come in all shapes, sizes and sexes. You may not realise it but you’re probably sitting next to one now. We are relatively normal people most of the time.
Now us golfers have many long kept secrets about how great we think our game is and how amazing the places are that we play. Good news though – to hopefully inspire you to take up the sport I’ve decided to break ranks and share a couple of places that I think a pretty special.
Are you hooked? I thought you would be. It’s now time to head to your local PGA Professional Golfer, get some lessons, buy some clubs and enjoy the world of golf and golf travel with my top 7 golf travel tips.
TIP 1: BOOKING THE TRIP
If you are set on taking your own clubs with you try and book as direct a route as possible using only one airline if you can (or at very least use one alliance). From my experience, the more times you transit and change airlines the more likely you are not to see your bags at the other end.
TIP 2: PROTECT YOUR CLUBS
Whether you are planning a long or short haul flight or regional road trip its important to make sure your clubs arrive at your destination in the same or better shape than you do.
I recommend buying a hard full size zip travel golf bag on wheels. It must have a hard top in case your bag gets accidentally dropped on its head in transit like mine did (and the wheels are handy for mobility around airports).
I highly recommend buying the full size bag as I bought a half size one and it annoyed the hell out of me. When I went to use it on the course all the clubs got tangled up together and it was difficult to get the clubs in and out.
And … my other reason for recommending the full size bag is you never know when you’re going to stumble across a new piece of equipment (if you know golfers, you know they never have enough equipment) so trust me – you DEFINITELY need to make sure there is that little bit of extra room in your bag for potential holiday purchases.
Note: It’s also a really good idea to pop some socks on your driver and or fairway woods if they don’t already have covers and stuff newspaper in around the irons so they don’t rattle around too much.
Remember its also a good idea to take any electronic devices out of your bag and pack them in your suitcase.
TIP 3: CLEAN YOUR GEAR
Quarantine officers do not like dirt so make sure all your gear clubs, bag and shoes are squeaky clean whenever you travel so you can avoid getting pulled up at inspection.
TIP 4: WEIGHT AND PIECE RESTRICTIONS
Chant after me: I will not get caught out. I will not get caught out. I will not get caught out.
Because … trust me, it’s very easy to get caught out when you’re travelling with odd shaped sporting equipment.
Weight and piece restrictions can be different from domestic to international even though you are with the same carrier.
Note: Make sure you know the weight restrictions and how many pieces you are entitled to and whether you can spread the weight amongst the pieces. (Luggage scales are always handy).
Note: Read the fine print and remember that your golf clubs are classed as an OVERSIZE item of luggage (not REGULAR).
If you do find you need extra pieces make sure you buy them ONLINE during the period stipulated on your booking confirmation or you will get stung sometimes double the price at check in.
Remember to drop off and pick up your clubs from the oversize counter at the airport. This is almost always in a different location to the regular drop off area and you can have your heart in your mouth when your clubs don’t arrive on the carousel as they will usually be waiting for you at the oversize pick up.
TIP 5: GET SOME APPS
Packing Pro is a super-enhanced version of the popular, top-ranking Packing app. If you desire great syncing & sharing options, display customization, a huge catalog, lots of sample lists, & additional, built-in Expert assistance, then Packing Pro is for you!
Will “automagically” create lists based on the number of adults (males & females), children & days, as well as temperature, destination, food preparation & clothes washing preferences.
Tracking flights has never been easier. Stay informed of your air travel details 24/7 with timely notifications on your iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch. Even when you’re not the one in the air, you can be well informed about the flight status of your friends and family.
Foursquare helps you find the perfect places to go with friends. Discover the best food, nightlife, and entertainment in your area.
TIP 6: MY HOT SPOTS IN AUSTRALIA & NEW ZEALAND
TIP 7: THE ULTIMATE TIP FOR THE GOLD TICKET GOLF EXPERIENCE
I always try and save the best for last… and yes this is a GOLD TIP because it’s a Virgin Australia Gold Membership I’m chasing with this post for a Virgin Australia competition.
There is a wise old saying that all good things take time, so if you have time to spare then this is the experience for you… Do you want to know more? You must pass the test …
Sanity Test for a Serious Golf Adrenaline Junkie
Q1. Do you go into withdrawal after the Masters?
Q2. Does the whiff of fresh grass clippings after some serious double striping alert your senses.
Q3. Do you one day hope to rub shoulders with the crème de la crème of golf behind the ropes.
3 Answers in the affirmative means you pass. Please proceed.
Yes this very unique and different way of taking in a major golf tournament that will blow your argyle socks off.
Have you ever thought of Volunteering?!!
I have had friends that have done this and they come back with insanely fantastic stories of who they met and what they have gotten up to, so I seriously encourage you to consider this as an option when sizing up your next golf trip.
Here are a few links to some of the big tournaments volunteer pages.
If I won the Virgin Australia Gold Membership I think I’d like to use the points to travel and volunteer at the 2015 Solheim Cup and the 2016 ISPS Handa Womens Australian Open. It would be amazing to attend these events and blog for Virgin Australia and Hungry4Golf.
….. And don’t forget
All those other little things like:
Booking a cab (you might need a station wagon), travel insurance, currency (money cards are good but they don’t always work), turn off the hot water system, put the mail on hold etc, etc, etc,
and of course don’t forget to RELAX AND HAVE FUN!!