Could club memberships increase?

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With all the restrictions currently in place I suspect there's not going to be much availability for visiting golfers.

Is it possible that golf clubs could increase memberships due to people desperate to play?
 

Lord Tyrion

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It really depends on how long visitors are excluded for. Some courses are already taking them, my course will allow them from June 1st we have been told. If nomads only have to wait for a couple of weeks I doubt it will provide a surge. If the restriction was a month or more then it could be a very different game.
 

DCB

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Certainly think that the current situation may make nomads think about it. If a members only policy runs over the summer it could well prompt a few to consider their options. There are bound to be a few good deals around as we come out of this situation.
 

IanM

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Funny old world....might just happen where it becomes worth while.

There was a bloke on a Facebook Group at the start of the week moaning that "stuffy old golf" was giving priority to members. What the folk who paid annual subs to keep the place open?? Funny that! Those folk who can be sanctioned effectively if they breach guidelines, unlike some random folk who appear from time to time? (Love the millennial use of the word "random!" )

I guess where clubs have online booking and payment systems for visitors they can accommodate them more easily and avoid the need to pay in the Pro Shop! (which isn't open!)

I would have though that most nomads will stay away till something approaching normal golf returns
 

Chico84

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I was thinking about joining a club this year. One in particular that I haven’t actually played yet but my brother rates highly and is near where we might move to in the near future has a very attractive joining offer. Unfortunately they are currently only allowing members to play (which I have no issue with) so I find myself in a bit of a catch 22 situation with that one. Plenty of other local courses allowing visitors though, but it probably won’t be for a few weeks when I get a round in.
 

DRW

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Certainly will need to, if 2 ball golf stays for the future and clubhouse locked up. Or maybe a change to membership structures so more you play more you pay.

Far to early to say, apart from its likely some more clubs will be going bust due to this and due to job losses membership number could well be down overall.
 

fundy

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Just chucked my postcode in golfnow, can get a game at one of the local courses on monday, £20 for 18 holes or £15 for a twilight round after 3pm start, wont be long before theres plenty of options assuming we dont head back into stricter lockdown imo

Personally think it more likely to go the other way for a lot of clubs, requiring increases in green fee/society/function bookings in the future to ensure their survival, very few clubs are set up financially to be able to survive purely on members subs, especially with no catering/bar in the short to medium term
 
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Well, I have signed up for a trial membership (I'd been thinking about it anyway) so that I can accompany my 12 year old daughter who is a junior member and been through the club's coaching system, on the course. I think the trial membership my local club set up at the start of this year (before all this was happening) was a good scheme anyway, and this has really made it very attractive indeed. I bet many of the nomads who buy into it will stay on afterwards.
 

fundy

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Well, I have signed up for a trial membership (I'd been thinking about it anyway) so that I can accompany my 12 year old daughter who is a junior member and been through the club's coaching system, on the course. I think the trial membership my local club set up at the start of this year (before all this was happening) was a good scheme anyway, and this has really made it very attractive indeed. I bet many of the nomads who buy into it will stay on afterwards.
that at John O Gaunt or somewhere else locally BB?
 

GB72

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I can see it the other way in that I can invisage significant increases in subscription costs next year as clubs try to sort their finances out. Trouble is, I can also see green fees increasing for the same reason. I know I am all doom and gloom but I can see golf just becoming more expensive.
 
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that at John O Gaunt or somewhere else locally BB?
Yep, JOG. They have been fantastic with my daughter in their coaching scheme since she was 8, hugely welcoming of me, a non-member, as I support her through that, regularly gently encouraging me to join but ok when I've said no. She became a proper junior (but is still pre-handicap) at the start of this year, and the opportunities it has given her already are massive, and the club seem to really love having the children around. Blue tees for them on one of the courses, never once have I heard anyone complain about being behind them etc, no limitations on play once they have their official handicaps and so on.

A few years ago, they hosted qualifying for the Women's Open, when it was at Woburn. I took her up to watch. We found a space in a packed car park, and as we got out the car saw the blazered and tied Retd Col Blenkinsopp (not his real name and title) marching up towards us. Uh oh, I thought, what have I done. Completely ignores me, kneels down to talk to my daughter, with massive smile asks her if she's here to see the golf, points her in the direction of some of the groups playing and some nice places to watch, and tells her where to go to make me buy her an ice cream. Club members around the course that day as volunteer stewards, scorers, markers, spotters etc all had exactly the same attitude, and treated her really well. Actually as did some of the players, including one who we saw bogey the last to miss qualifying by one shot. For all the rubbish (and some truth) about Golf being stuck in its ways, archaic and exclusive, I bet there are loads of stories like that.
 

Wolf

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I can see it the other way in that I can invisage significant increases in subscription costs next year as clubs try to sort their finances out. Trouble is, I can also see green fees increasing for the same reason. I know I am all doom and gloom but I can see golf just becoming more expensive.
That's how I see as well, increase in subscriptions and green feew to make up for the large financial shortfalls of this year and then those costs remaining high in subsequent years.

Its certainly left me of the opinion that I was right to let my membership lapse in March and not consider a membership for a long time and just maybe have the odd social green fee now and again. Save money and use it to pursue other more affordable interests.
 

fundy

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Out of curiousity whats the trial membership deal?

Was in MK until a few years ago and played JOG many times often in competitive matches, including getting beat by one of their junior organisers who posts (or did post on here a whileback)

Really well set up and run club, hard to think of a better club in your area for a junior thats for sure

Watching golf is almost always better a level or two below the top for me, far more relaxed, more accessible etc, used to go to Woburn for Open qualifying, the seniors masters etc always good days out
 
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Out of curiousity whats the trial membership deal?

Was in MK until a few years ago and played JOG many times often in competitive matches, including getting beat by one of their junior organisers who posts (or did post on here a whileback)

Really well set up and run club, hard to think of a better club in your area for a junior thats for sure

Watching golf is almost always better a level or two below the top for me, far more relaxed, more accessible etc, used to go to Woburn for Open qualifying, the seniors masters etc always good days out
Here's the link to the trial membership deal

https://www.johnogauntgolfclub.co.u...Trial Membership (John O'Gaunt Golf Club).pdf
 

GB72

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That's how I see as well, increase in subscriptions and green feew to make up for the large financial shortfalls of this year and then those costs remaining high in subsequent years.

Its certainly left me of the opinion that I was right to let my membership lapse in March and not consider a membership for a long time and just maybe have the odd social green fee now and again. Save money and use it to pursue other more affordable interests.
Sadly an opportunity for elements in some clubs who want high fees and a low, selective membership to step in. Again, just me being cynical but the rumours are that there were elements at my old club who were looking for just that and this may be their opportunity to get it. I am another who was glad that I let my membership lapse in March and this was a decision made before covid as I was not playing enough to justify it. Got a feeling that I will take this year off and reassess next year when I can see the fallout from this all. That said, my wife is also feeling less keen on her powerlifting (she was building up for 2 comps that are cancelled, she is not likely to lift this year and obviously cannot train or meet her coach at the moment) and is going to be taking a massive step backwards if she goes back to it so we may find something that we can both do.
 
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No visitors, members guests or societies for a month. We are fortunate in not having a huge financial dependency on that income. Might change of course.
 
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That's how I see as well, increase in subscriptions and green feew to make up for the large financial shortfalls of this year and then those costs remaining high in subsequent years.

Its certainly left me of the opinion that I was right to let my membership lapse in March and not consider a membership for a long time and just maybe have the odd social green fee now and again. Save money and use it to pursue other more affordable interests.
My golf is free after I've paid my membership...eminently affordable...;)
 
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