Best Cheap Golf Balls

Finding the best cheap golf balls is an over-riding priority for many golfers for a variety of reasons. Here we point you towards some of the best options

Best Cheap Golf Balls
(Image credit: Tom Miles)

Best Cheap Golf Balls

If we’re being brutally honest, for all the technology the major golf ball brands plough into the very best golf balls on the market (and other models in their ranges), for some golfers, golf ball purchases will always ultimately be about cost.

This might be because they have limited means at their disposal full stop; it might be because they’re relatively new to the game or are spraying it around a bit so value is a top priority; or it might be that they simply wish to choose how they spend their money and are perfectly happy with the performance of certain less expensive models.

Some people may think if it’s cheap it can’t be any good but this is most definitely not the case with golf balls. Many inexpensive models offer plenty of performance as well as plenty of ammo for your money. We’ve got manufacturers’ prices here ranging from £5.99 a dozen (yes, you heard that right!) up to £26.99 a dozen.

That upper price may or may not seem cheap to you, but we’ve seen every model in this selection on offer at under £20 a dozen somewhere and that was the cut-off point we were broadly working to.

Our selection includes some of the best value balls on the market, some of the best distance balls and some of the best soft-feel balls.

Most models at this end of the market feature a simple two-piece design – a core and a cover of varying attributes to promote different blends of performance. But our most expensive one – TaylorMade’s Soft Response – is a three-piece design offering a little more in the way of all-round performance.

Some people might prefer the word ‘inexpensive’, but at the end of the day, cheap is what these balls are. And we shouldn’t run away from the seeming bluntness of the word because it is, after all, the key factor in many golf ball-buying decisions …

titleist trufeel golf ball and packaging

(Image credit: Golf Monthly)

Lowest-priced option from golf's premier ball brand

RRP: £23/$22.99
Construction: Two-piece
Colours: 3 (white, yellow, red)
Reasons to buy
+A chance to play golf’s premier ball brand for a modest price+A particularly good performer on full iron shots
Reasons to avoid
-Releases out more than some will want on wedge shots

Titleist’s latest TruFeel ball promises improved driver distance compared to its predecessor thanks to a new core blessed with speed-generating properties. As a result, driver ball speeds are up, while also keeping spin low to maximise distance.

The cover’s aerodynamic properties have been further improved to help out on the distance front too.

This ball feels soft on all shots, which might well translate into better control for some. It will grab on well-struck greenside shots but does release out a little more on wedge shots than some balls. However, it flies higher too, which helps to boost stopping power a little.

This improved Titleist all-rounder gives those on a limited budget the chance to still play golf’s premier ball brand.

srixon distance ball and packaging

(Image credit: Golf Monthly)

One of the longest golf balls out there

RRP: £17.99/$20
Construction: Two-piece
Colours: 1 (white)
Reasons to buy
+A great ball for those delivering 80+mph swing speeds+A high penetrating ball flight with excellent carry distance
Reasons to avoid
-The durable cover will feel too firm to some golfers

The latest incarnation of Srixon’s popular Distance model has a softer compression than the previous model.

It delivers on its distance claims via a combination of increased initial velocity with a higher launch angle for a penetrating ball flight.

The dimple count is down by no fewer than 108 too, and Srixon says this new configuration reduces drag and increases lift for better performance whatever the wind is doing.

The cover is engineered for greater cut-proof durability, but this does mean a firmer feel on those scoring shots around the greens.

Best cheap golf balls - Callaway Warbird

(Image credit: Callaway)

Excellent hang time and carry distance

RRP: £16.99/$17.99
Construction: Two-piece
Colours: 2 (white, yellow)
Reasons to buy
+Highly compressible core boosts distance potential at all swing speeds+The HEX cover helps to reduce drag for more hang time and distance
Reasons to avoid
-Firm feel won’t suit those whose games rely on maximum greenside control

The Warbird name has featured in Callaway’s ranges almost from day one and is now synonymous with cost-effective distance and speed in its ball collection.

The latest Callaway Warbird’s two-piece construction features an extra-large, high-energy core, which paves the way to a higher launch and more yards for golfers with different swing speeds. The cover design also reduces drag to generate more speed, greater hang time and added distance.

In testing, we found there were extra yards to be had, especially on iron shots into the greens, but its firmish ionomer cover provides less check and control than some might want greenside.

Best cheap golf balls - Wilson Staff Duo Soft+

(Image credit: Wilson Staff)

Wilson Duo Soft+ golf ball

Particularly good for those with more modest swing speeds

RRP: £19.99/$23
Construction: Two-piece
Colours: 1 (white) but 2 logo colours – red or white
Reasons to buy
+More modest swing speeds will benefit greatly from its ultra-low 35 compression core+High ball flight means a steeper descent for more stopping power
Reasons to avoid
-Surlyn cover may feel too hard to some around the greens

The Wilson Staff Duo Soft+ ball is powered by a new VelocitiCOR, with the brand claiming it to be the softest and longest premium two-piece ball on the market.

Since it also boasts low-spin credentials, it has the capacity to soften hook and slice spin a little.

It launches high off the face of irons with the steep descent this generates adding to the stopping power on offer on full shots into greens.

Yes, it may feel a little firm to some around the greens, but as with the DX2 Soft that preceded it, there’s a lot of performance on offer here at a great price.

And for those swayed by such things, its cover makes it one of the whitest of white golf balls on the market.

taylormade soft response ball and packaging

(Image credit: Golf Monthly)

A particularly strong performer in the wind

RRP: £26.99/$24.99
Construction: Three-piece
Colours: 3 (white, yellow, red)
Reasons to buy
+Performs particularly well in the wind with a stable ball flight+Carries a long way thanks to shallower U-shaped dimples that decrease drag
Reasons to avoid
-Not quite as much spin control as the Tour Response so chips run out a little more

The Soft Response and the more expensive Tour Response model sit below the premium TP5 product in TaylorMade’s ball range.

The price difference between the two is significant, and with Soft Response readily available for much less than its RRP, it’s a worthy addition to this best cheap golf ball guide given the all-round performance on offer.

Its durable ionomer covers still provides a suitably soft feel and the ball works particularly well in the hands of golfers with moderate swing speeds.

The cover’s Extended Flight Dimple pattern helps to decrease drag and increase lift so the ball stays in the air longer at lower spin rates.

The best all-round performer in our cheap balls selection.

Best cheap golf balls - Inesis Distance 100

(Image credit: Decathlon)

Inesis Distance 100 golf ball

The cheapest new ball per dozen that we know of

RRP: £5.99
Construction: Two-piece
Colours: 2 (white, yellow)
Reasons to buy
+Gives golfers on all budgets the chance to play a new ball+Performs well on the distance front
Reasons to avoid
-Doesn’t offer much in the way of control and feel around the greens

No-one is pretending that this is one of the premier balls on the market, but at just 50p a ball we felt we had to include it here as it gives golfers on any budget the chance to play a brand new golf ball.

It has a matte finish, in all honesty looks like a cheap golf ball and makes no pretence of the fact that it is almost solely about distance.

In our on-course testing it seemed to give us the ball flight we would usually expect and got it out there a decent distance relative to other models we were also testing.

For the price of around a sleeve of certain other balls here, the Distance 100 gives you a lot of bang for your buck if you’re not too worried about top-class all-round performance.

Best cheap golf balls - Pinnacle Soft

(Image credit: Pinnacle Golf)

Pinnacle Soft golf ball

A softer version of the ever-popular Pinnacle

RRP: £20/$24.99 (for 15 balls)
Construction: Two-piece
Colours: 2 (white, pink)
Reasons to buy
+Core and cover are engineered for added distance off both driver and irons+Likely to go slightly further than the sister Rush model at slower swing speeds
Reasons to avoid
-Slightly softer than previous generations which may not appeal to all

Pinnacle has long been associated with good-value distance balls at a great price and the latest Rush and Soft models continue that tradition.

A high-energy core helps to generate faster ball speeds with every club, with the 332-dimple, soft, durable cover paving the way to a consistent, powerful ball flight.

We’ve selected the Soft model over the Rush here as it offers a little more all-round performance and should also prove a little longer for those with slower swing speeds 

It’s also worth factoring into your buying decision that Pinnacle balls still come in 15-ball packs rather than the standard dozen.

honma a1 golf ball

(Image credit: Golf Monthly)

Great if you like a really soft-feeling golf ball

RRP: £14.99/$N/A
Construction: Two-piece
Colours: 4 (white, yellow, orange + pink in the multi-colour pack)
Reasons to buy
+Eye-catchingly priced option from one of golf’s premium brands+Designed to reduce sidespin and therefore the severity of slices
Reasons to avoid
-May feel a tad too soft on full shots for some

This prestigious Japanese brand may historically have sat at the super-premium end of the golf club market, but it's a little different in the Honma ball range.

Yes, they do have premium models but the A1 provides one of the best low-cost options for golfers on a budget.

The A1’s super-soft core is around 20% lighter than in the D1 model, and Honma says the primary benefit of this is to reduce any sidespin imparted at impact to potentially neutralise the severity of slices a little.

Our testing showed there is perhaps a degree of truth in this, although don’t expect the severest of slices to miraculously find their way back on to the fairway.

It’s also super-soft off the clubface on full shots for those who like that sort of feel.

Best cheap golf balls - Vice Drive

(Image credit: Vice Golf)

Vice Drive golf ball

Even better price when buying more than a dozen at a time

RRP: Varies by quantity (e.g. £17.88 a dozen or £71.40 for 5 dozen + shipping)
Construction: Two-piece
Colours: 1 (white)
Reasons to buy
+One of the lowest-priced balls on the market with reductions for bulk purchases+The durable cover is extremely cut-resistant
Reasons to avoid
-Not the right choice in Vice’s range for those with faster swings

The Vice Drive’s soft Energy Speed Core is a real distance generator for those with low to medium swing speeds

It has a durable Surlyn cover, which is highly cut-resistant on mishits or visits to the trees and has fewer dimples than most other balls.

Those 312 large dimples help to keep air resistance to a minimum for a more stable ball flight, while wedge spin rates are higher in this latest version for greater greenside control.

It’s already an inexpensive option, but if you’re not averse to buying in bulk, by the time you get to five dozen, the price is down to just £14.28 a dozen plus shipping.

How we test golf balls

The test team at Golf Monthly is highly experienced. All of them either play a lot of golf or have worked in the golf industry for many years. In many cases, it’s both!

Some are more proficient at getting the ball out there off the tee; some excel playing into the greens; others have a sometimes irritating habit of getting up and down far too often around the greens; and others still are dab-hands with the flatstick.

We aim to test every ball model on the market as soon as it become available to us, putting in many hours out on the golf course, the practice ground, the short-game area and the putting green so we can get a feel for every ball's strengths and weaknesses from tee to green.

Whenever possible, we will also seek to acquire launch monitor data for a more detailed analysis of each ball model's performance.

Factors to consider when buying cheap golf balls

Durability – Sometimes cheaper balls don't last as long because they cut up, or the cover isn't of a high quality. If durability is a key factor, stick to models with firmer, cut-resistant covers. If feel is more important, go for models with softer covers.

Long game or short game? – Do you want as much distance as possible from your golf ball or one that allows your short game to shine thanks to improved feel? If the former, then check out firmer models like the Srixon Distance. If short-game feel is your thing, models like the Honma A1 might suit you better. Check out our best soft feel golf balls guide for more models designed for feel.

Trade-off - As per the above, at this end of the market there are often compromises to be made between different elements of performance. You will need to decide which are most important to you.

Colour – Almost anything goes now when it comes to golf balls, with many models available in three or more colours. Eight is the widest colour palette we’ve seen!

Budget – Prices here range from a mere £5.99 a dozen to £26.99 a dozen for the TaylorMade Soft Response, which is available in some places for under £20 a dozen, This means that you can still use new ammo even if you don’t want to spend more than 50p per ball!

Number of balls – Sometimes buying in bulk will get you an even better price, and this is particularly the case with the Vice Golf ball range. Committing to five dozen at a time brings the price down by 30p a ball or 20%.

Jeremy Ellwood
Jeremy Ellwood

Jeremy Ellwood has worked in the golf industry since 1993 and for Golf Monthly since 2002 when he started out as equipment editor. He is now a freelance journalist writing mainly for Golf Monthly across the whole spectrum from courses and Rules to equipment and even instruction despite his own somewhat iffy swing (he knows how to do it, but just can't do it himself). He also edits The Golf Club Secretary Newsletter, has authored or co-authored three books and written for a number of national papers including The Telegraph and The Independent. He is a senior panelist for Golf Monthly's Top 100 UK & Ireland Course Rankings and has played all of the Top 100 plus 89 of the Next 100. He has played well over 900 courses worldwide in 35 countries, but put him on a links course anywhere and he will be blissfully content. On his first trip to Abu Dhabi a decade ago he foolishly asked Paul Casey what sort of a record he had around the course there. "Well, I've won it twice if that's what you mean!" came the reply...