The Average Cost for a Round of Golf in the USA
Public Access and Municipal Courses
An average weekend round of golf at municipal courses is about $45 whereas privately owned courses are on average $10 more. This may not seem like a big difference but with more public access courses becoming privately owned, the price for a round of golf is likely to increase. Even with increased prices, privately owned public courses are often still more cost effective. Private clubs generally have a one-time membership fee, ranging from a few hundred to thousands of dollars. Some clubs have an additional cart/caddie fee and daily use fee as well. However, avid golfers may find country clubs desirable do to the many amenities and perks they offer.
Whether you are new to golf or unfamiliar with a course, it is best to arrive prepared. Many courses offer equipment rental or have a store to purchase new equipment but check with your location ahead of time to make sure they have what you will need. Club rentals average around $15 and balls cost around $10/ dozen. Of course, you can also just bring your own golf bag with everything you need. Also, will you be walking the course, carrying your own clubs, or prefer a golf cart? Many courses charge $15-$20 to use a cart. If you plan on walking, you might want to check if there are fees for going over the allotted time. Novices should consider adding a lesson, generally around $40, before the bad swings become bad habits.
Time and Location
Prices vary greatly depending on the location. A course in Iowa charges 22$ to walk a full-length course on the weekends. In contrast, a course in Miami charges up to 200$ for non-residents in the winter. Even though both of these examples are public, city-owned entities, the time of year and location demonstrated a drastic difference in their prices. Places with dense populations, desirable climates, and tourist attractions generally have higher rates.
Courses around the country often have reduced rates for weekdays, afternoons, and during slow seasons. Weekday late afternoons can be half the price on weekend mornings for some courses. Warmer destination courses will often have separate summer, fall, and winter prices offering significantly reduced rates for summer rounds. Of course, a round of golf on a hot and sticky afternoon of a mid-July Wednesday in Miami may not sound incredibly desirable but that’s the point.
The price of golf depends on the area’s level of interest as well. Areas with high interest in golf and only a few courses will inevitably be more expensive than areas with low interest and many available courses. Highly developed metropolitan areas generally have more expensive courses because there is less space for golf and more people interested in playing. Age, maintenance, renovations, and customer service also have an impact on the price and ability to drawn in golfers. Newer isn’t always better but can mean pricier. Often new courses draw in golfers ready to “test the water” but older courses keep their business. The more you hit the green, you will notice that a well-manicured course, good customer service, and the comfort of familiarity and friends often is more appealing to golfers like yourself.