How Many Golf Balls Do You Start A Round Of Golf With?

How many golf balls do you start a round of golf with? Here's what our forum members said...

how many golf balls do you start a round with?
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‘When I Changed Bags, I Think I Had 90 Something Golf Balls In There’

How Many Golf Balls Do You Start A Round Of Golf With?

We asked our forum members to open up their souls, and their golf bags, as to how many balls they will start off with for one round of golf

Plenty of us will now be beginning the process of checking and obsessing over our golf bags  to make sure we’ve got everything just so. As the old saying goes ‘golf is a game played between the ears’ and for many of us that starts with our balls.

How Many Golf Balls Do You Start A Round Of Golf With?

Enough....put it this way, if I run out I'm giving up golf. Imurg

5 or 6 but I'd take a few extra if I'm playing somewhere new. hacker_al

A couple of scabby ones for the net. Probably three-ish used but great condition for general play, and maybe three new ones at any one time. Traminator

Two sleeves of TP5s and a couple of loose ones, don't generally lose many where we play so most go the practice ball bag when they get worn out, must be about 200 in there! AliMc

I generally like to have 10 in the bag including a couple of yellow ones. Tongo

Usually between 6-10. Mostly decent but always have a couple of chewed up ones for evening golf with low sun where you can’t see diddly squat. Junior

Without meaning to be glib - usually the same number that I finished the previous round with - and that could be dozens as I tend to find a fair few every round; they all go in my bag and I am hopeless at emptying it. As I will empty my bag's pockets before next playing I'm guessing I'll leave a couple of dozen. SwingsitlikeHogan

Not enough. Usually there's between 10-20 in the bag but that's because I tend to find more than I lose and alway forget to clear any out.  backwoodsman

Lordy, I've just checked and there were 28 balls in there. It's a bit of a throwback to when I started and played a course that had the potential to swallow a few balls. Now I often go around with the same ball or lose only one or two so I really need to take some out. Saying that, I doubt I could start with fewer than 15 in the bag. Why stress when I'm using an electric trolley to carry the weight? Is any thought scarier for a golfer than running out of golf balls? Lord Tyrion

Playing the 18-hole course about six. Playing the 9 when I carried clubs only two or three but have been known to have to go in the woods for a ball hunt to finish the round. Most of the finders normally get left on the 1st tee as I walk past it for someone else as they are usually cheap and 2-piece balls. jim8flog

At least a dozen and at least two makes just in case a provisional is needed. Green Bay Hacker

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Will usually only use two brand new balls in a competition round. Any more and the jig is up. Usually have around 10-15 balls in the bag at any one time. Like to use a new one on the 1st for a comp. If that ball lasts a few rounds without a knife mark and I'm playing well then I'll keep using it. Social knocks a ball that isn’t chewed up will do. garyinderry

I like to carry about three sleeves of brand new balls, one sleeve at bottom of bag, the other two are open, four balls put in my ball holders on the bag and two in play (one provisional and one in play ball). pauljames87

Around six usually. Might be a sleeve of new ones, plus a few found stragglers for provisionals, or if I've lost a couple of new ones and don't want to lose anymore! Carrying any more than that is just pointless extra weight. Even if you have a mare and lost six balls somehow, you can always find one in the bushes after you lost the first four or five. Orikoru

Probably five. I get nervous if there are only three, but more than five seems excessive. If I lose five, I am probably also going to run short of clubs too, as I clearly am not playing well. murphthemog

I normally have about a dozen new ones, plus a few tatty ones for the practice green or net. Dando

More than I finish with.. birdyhunter

There are some courses where it’s difficult to lose many balls. So on those occasions I’m happy with a couple of sleeves. At my own club it’s a different story. In mid summer with bone-hard fairways and shin to knee high second cut, and wind thrown in because of its exposed position, the course can swallow up ammo - even good shots can run out of fairway, never to be seen again. So I still make sure I’ve at least a dozen. The day I get down to my last ball halfway round the back nine, I’ll be seeking therapy for my nerves. Billysboots

I have a dozen to 20 in my ball pocket. It’s quite big so why not fill it? I use cheapish balls on full 18 courses. Those decathlon ones at the moment. My pencil bag has about three to six in it. I use premium high spinning balls at the par 3. ScienceBoy

I like to have a dozen or so in the bag, start to get a bit anxious if I have half a dozen or fewer. HarrogateHacker

Always have a dozen - and will top up at the end of the round if needs be to keep the OCD in check. barry23

Three or four in bounce games, and put a new one in for a competition. I only lose a couple a year at our course, I'm a very short hitter so even the wayward strike doesn't go far enough to elude me. Might stick a couple more in on away days to be absolutely sure. fenwayrich

Two - you never know, my mate might run out and need to borrow one. ger147

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Probably keep about a dozen in my cart bag, six in my carry bag, I don't usually hit them far enough to lose them. Unfortunately I lost three recently on our 1st hole (none OOB), all lost either in fallen leaves or plugged in soft ground. williamalex1

Two new ones, a couple that are new enough that they don’t cause any mental questions about their ability, and a couple retired veterans. sweaty sock

Around a dozen. Half will be new ones, the others a few rounds each with and would have been used in bounce games. patricks148

No joke - probably around 30 balls. I pick up everything I find and tend not to have many clear outs. However, I play with a lot of mates who aren’t really golfers so I end up throwing them half a dozen balls when they quickly start to run out. Bdill93

I use a trolley, so weight not a factor, so many balls in the pocket of the bag. If I lost them all in one round, I'd join the bowls section. Swinglowandslow

I'd estimate about a dozen or so. The number doesn't change a lot as I don't tend to lose a lot, nor find too many. When I used to collect my late brother and his bag from his home I always said how heavy it was. He said he emptied it one day and found 64 balls in the bag in total!  Robster59

When I changed my bag, I think I had 90 something. My new bag has a smaller pocket so probably from 30-70. I have been known to lose half a doze balls during a bad round! DRW

I know someone who is Cat 1 and refuses to carry more than his handicap. I loved watching him walk in during a big comp from the 5th hole once! Swingalot

Two or three sleeves, plus the one sleeve I am playing, so 7 to 9 balls. I also have a handful of ransoms in the bag, just in case. And if I find a premium ball I play that (until the stream crossing). larmen

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Mark Townsend
Contributing editor

Mark has worked in golf for over 20 years having started off his journalistic life at the Press Association and BBC Sport before moving to Sky Sports where he became their golf editor on He then worked at National Club Golfer and Lady Golfer where he was the deputy editor and he has interviewed many of the leading names in the game, both male and female, ghosted columns for the likes of Robert Rock, Charley Hull and Dame Laura Davies, as well as playing the vast majority of our Top 100 GB&I courses. He loves links golf with a particular love of Royal Dornoch and Kingsbarns. He is now a freelance, also working for the PGA and Robert Rock. Loves tour golf, both men and women and he remains the long-standing owner of an horrific short game. He plays at Moortown with a handicap of 6.