By Sam Tremlett published
Where To Spend And Save Money On Golf Gear
There is no denying golf can be an expensive sport compared to others and as a result golfers have to make choices on where they should spend, and where they should save their money. That is where this video and explainer comes in.
We have covered pretty much the entire bag here and it is also worth saying that a great way to save is going second-hand. There are some pretty big pitfalls we should mention. Obviously you should be wary of buying clubs that were fitted for someone else - they might be a bit older, and you might not be able to trust where the club is coming from in some cases.
But even when buying new equipment there are some factors you should be aware of. First is your ability because this will likely dictate which clubs or gear you are after - you should really look to invest money in the areas of your bag that you are the weakest.
You also need to have a clear idea of your budget because this will dictate where you spend you money as some categories like drivers and irons and are more expensive that others, like balls or shoes. So where should you spend and where should you save? Read on to find out...
One area to save your money is golf balls. Premium balls like the Titleist Pro V1 are incredibly consistent and lots of golfers rely on this and repeat purchase, but there are some excellent mid-priced options that really don’t sacrifice much in terms of performance. You can get some very good models like the Titleist Tour Speed, Srixon Q-Star Tour, or TaylorMade Tour Response, all at a lower price point than the best golf balls on the market.
One area Joel and Dan agree when it comes to spending money is the driver. The RRP of top-end models do keep climbing at the moment, with many costing between £450 and £500 but we think it is worth the investment.
The performance difference between very cheap models and the top drivers is pretty significant, it is a club you rely on to get you in play off the tee and if you spend a little more you can get a custom fitting as well so the driver works best for you. The benefits of investing in top models also include high-quality materials and components, and best-in-class forgiveness so don't skimp in this area of the bag.
- Want to invest? Here is our list on the best golf drivers
The next area to mention is putters and this is where Joel and Dan actually disagree.
Joel thinks you can save money on the putter because the technology in putters has less of an impact than any other area in the bag. He thinks pretty much any putter at any price point will do a pretty good job of propelling the ball to the hole, and actually putters are more liable to user error and the technology has a limited impact.
Dan disagrees, saying it is the club we use the most during a round in terms of the number of shots hit so it makes sense to spend a little more here, and in terms of higher handicap players, putting is the place where they can save the most shots so going for a model with more forgiveness could lead to that handicap coming down.
Wedges are up next and as you would expect both Joel and Dan are in agreement here that you should spend money on your wedges. Whilst you could save by going for three wedges over four, they still need to be high-quality because the short-game is an area where many shots can be saved.
Going for one of the best golf wedges will mean more loft, grind and sole options meaning you can get wedges to suit your game. Additionally because of how often we use the wedges, they can deteriorate quickly which will create a drop-off in spin, and consistency can also be hindered here.
Both Joel and Dan think you can save on lasers. Joel has tested all the latest models and he found there is not actually that much different between a laser that costs £150, and one for £350 - especially if all you’re really after is point and shoot functionality. Yes, if you want to clip it to your buggy or want it to show you GPS yardages or hole maps you’re going to need to pay more but for something to give you simple distances to the flag, a laser rangefinder doesn’t need to cost the earth.
- Want some laser inspiration? The best golf laser rangefinders has got you covered
Another area to spend is on the irons. Obviously they populate a lot of spots in the bag so it makes sense to invest here, especially because you will likely have them for a good few years. On that note, because irons are expensive anyway, you might as well spend a little bit more and get a custom fitting as well.
Additionally, from our testing we have found older irons, or less expensive ones tend to offer worse feel as they tend to feel harder and harsher. The ball-striking experience isn't quite what you want so spend money on your irons and you won't regret it.
The next area to save is golf shoes. You can get some excellent models for £100 or so whilst the top of the range models often come with an RRP of closer to £150. Admittedly you are paying for quality, durability and styling but overall Joel and Dan think shoes is an area you can save without sacrificing too much comfort or performance. If you do decide to save this does not mean you have to go for a lesser name brand either as FootJoy, Under Armour, Ecco, Adidas and so on, all offer shoes at a less expensive price point.
The final section Joel and Dan mention, and once again disagree on, is trolleys.
Dan thinks you can actually save here because you can opt for something simple like a push trolley over an electric one. Alternatively if you do want an electric model, there are some less expensive models from brands like MGI, for example.
Joel, however, thinks spending money on trolleys is the best course of action. Gone are the days of electric trolleys only transporting your clubs around the course. They can do so much more nowadays - keep your score, measure your shots and even provide GPS distances. So while a top of the range, GPS-enabled electric trolley costs a bit more (around £800) you’re removing the need for an external GPS device which on average costs you a couple of hundred bucks so you’re quids in from the off. Finally they last for ages - the frame and battery are so robust now you’d be unlucky not to get a good five years use out of them if not more.
What do you make of this video and advice? Let us know where you think people should spend and save on golf gear and also be sure to check out our buying guide's as well.
A golfer for most of his life, Sam started playing the game to prove he was the best player out of his father and two brothers.
He quickly became a golf equipment expert and has always been the one family and friends come to for buying advice, and spends a lot of his time putting golf gear, apparel and shoes to the test.
He is a graduate of Swansea University where he studied History and American Studies, and he has been a part of the Golf Monthly team since February 2018. He also previously worked for World Soccer and Rugby World magazines.
A jack of all trades across print and digital formats, Sam now spends most of his time testing and looking after golf gear content for the website. He also oversees all Tour player content as well.
Unfortunately, Sam is not a member of any club at the moment but regularly gets out on the golf course to keep up the facade of having a handicap of five.
Sam is currently playing:
Driver: Titleist TS3
Fairway Wood: TaylorMade M5 (15 degrees), Nike Covert Tour 2.0 (19 degrees)
Irons (4-PW): Titleist AP2
Wedges: Titleist Vokey SM7 54˚, 58˚
Putter: Scotty Cameron Circa 62 #6
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