The ClubGlider Meridian is feature-packed, offers up good space and has very thick padding to protect the top end of your golf bag. It's also a joy to use and you will be the envy of the airport when wheeling it around whilst other golfers continually pick up their travel covers.
Padding at the top end is very thick
Outside pockets are spacious
Legs and wheels are a game changer
Can be tricky to put legs/wheels back up
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While I have only ever used one other travel cover before this, having stood in airport queues at both Heathrow and Atlanta with many other travelling golfers my view is that the ClubGlider Meridian is easily top of the tree when it comes to the best golf travel bags. For one thing, no other travel covers had wheels or legs so in slow-moving queues I was the only golfer not picking up my travel cover and moving it a couple of yards at a time to progress further up the queue. The ClubGlider Meridian made the experience much easier and I felt like the envy of the airport using it.
Just like the name suggests, it simply glides around the airport and takes away any stress from your back, arms and wrists that comes with carrying or trying to manoeuvre a bag without wheels. The legs are very sturdy and the wheels roll excellently. One slight negative is that it sometimes glides a little too easily, especially when moving downhill, so a brake of some sorts would be helpful. The frame of the legs is housed in the hard back so that gives you peace of mind that your clubs are protected in a safe shell.
The thick padding around the top of the bag should ensure that there are no accidents with your driver and fairway woods during transit. I would note that the material used in the bottom and middle sections isn't extremely padded or waterproof compared to some of the chunkier leather options I saw on my travels, but there is a trade off here. Sure, you can go for the travel bag with the extra padding but you will pay more, and without the legs/wheel combo of the Glider it simply isn’t worth that extra cost.
Storage is not a problem as the bag comes with two spacious outside pockets, one on either side, that can easily house rain jackets, waterproofs, sweaters or anything else you see fit to put in there for easy access. These are really handy if, like me, you've stuffed your cabin suitcase full and want to take a couple of extra hoodies or golf shorts. If I was nit-picking I might say that I would have liked to have seen a couple more outside pockets if possible. I am someone who likes to take their entire golf wardrobe and accessories abroad so any extra storage space never goes to waste.
Inside the bag, there are two straps to keep your golf bag secured and there’s enough room for plenty more besides. For instance, on my way home I had a fully packed stand bag with 14 clubs, two pairs of spikeless shoes, a rangefinder and a wash bag in there and it all just about fit in and got back safely. While it was slightly tricky to close the bag with all of that gear in there, the amount of space on offer should be enough for any golfer. There are straps and clips on the outside of the bag to tighten and secure it, and there are sturdy handles to make it easy to pull around or pick up and carry. Undoubtedly the star of the show when it comes to the best golf luggage.
There was perhaps slightly less space inside than I expected because the thick padding at the top really does take up a lot of room. However this is perfectly acceptable given the importance of that extra padding. It was fine for me with my lightweight stand bag, but if you’re travelling with a large cart bag or even a tour bag then you may find it is quite a snug fit if you start putting shoes and other items in there with your set of clubs.
Whilst the legs and wheels make this travel bag the undeniable king, they aren’t quite perfect. The legs work on a retractable spring system and can be quite difficult to put back to their flat position. It requires a bit of force to pull them out so you need to make sure the bottom wheels won't be able to roll as you do it. Once you get the hang of it you won’t have a problem, but it might be tricky to begin with. The ClubGlider Meridian can also be a bit awkward to manoeuvre in small spaces when trying to make sharp or 360 degree turns, although that’s to be expected given its size.
Overall, I spent a lot of time at a couple of airports with a lot of golfers and I can honestly say that from what I have seen this is the best travel bag on the market. The inside straps are great for securing your bag and on the outside, the two pockets come in very handy for easy-access items or clothing that can’t quite fit in your suitcase. The legs and wheels are a complete game changer and the padding around the top of the bag gives great peace of mind.
We’ve all heard those horror stories about broken clubs, so being able to relax and know your clubs are adequately protected makes flying less stressful. It's not quite the perfect golf travel bag just yet, but Sun Mountain has got very close.
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Elliott Heath is our News Editor and has been with Golf Monthly since early 2016 after graduating with a degree in Sports Journalism. He manages the Golf Monthly news, features, courses and travel sections as well as our large Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages. He covered the 2022 Masters from Augusta National as well as four Open Championships on-site including the 150th at St Andrews. His first Open was in 2017 at Royal Birkdale, when he walked inside the ropes with Jordan Spieth during the Texan's memorable Claret Jug triumph. He has played 35 of our Top 100 golf courses, with his favourites being both Sunningdales, Woodhall Spa, Western Gailes, Old Head and Turnberry. He has been obsessed with the sport since the age of 8 and currently plays at West Byfleet Golf Club in Surrey, where his handicap index floats anywhere between 2-5. His golfing highlights are making albatross on the 9th hole on the Hotchkin Course at Woodhall Spa, shooting an under-par round, playing in the Aramco Team Series on the Ladies European Tour and making his one and only hole-in-one at the age of 15 - a long time ago now!
Elliott is currently playing:
Driver: Titleist TSR4
3 wood: Titleist TSi2 HL
Irons: Mizuno MP-H4 3-iron, Mizuno MP5 4-PW
Wedges: Cleveland RTX ZipCore 50, 54, 58
Putter: Odyssey White Hot OG #5
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