Plan Your Scottish Golf Vacation: 5 Key Questions
Golfers the world over dream of one day making the pilgrimage to The Home of Golf at St Andrews to secure their own piece of golfing history on The Old Course. The majority of these dedicated enthusiasts will enjoy this great experience as part of an overall golf based vacation providing the opportunity to play several courses, travel to various parts of the country creating great memories with friends and family.
However before you start contacting a Scottish Golf Tour Operator ( hopefully you will select Kard and Brown ! ) to put together details of tee-times, accommodation and travel arrangements you should take some time to consider a number of factors, critical to ensuring we can create the very best package for your group. We have outlined some key questions which normally form the basis for ensuring a successful bespoke golf tour.Hopefully you find these useful.
1) Who will be travelling with you ?
What size of group is being considered ? As most clubs prefer to offer tee times as fourballs, ideally the golfers in your group should total 8,12,16,24 etc
What level of ability is there within the playing group ? Will all golfers want to play the same courses or would it be better to allocate certain players to certain courses. Remember that a number of the more prestigious clubs will require handicap certificates and bear in mind that the primary reason for embarking on your dream golf trip is to enjoy every moment. There will be very little to smile about if you are a high handicapper trying to battle your way round one of the very toughest links such as Carnoustie when the wind really blows and a mid-summer downpour arrives just as you reach the farthest point of the course.
Are there any non-golfers in the group; if so what alternative activities do they want to take part in ? Many of the top golf resorts such as Gleneagles, Turnberry or The Old Course Hotel ( St Andrews ) offer any number of great sporting and relaxing options including Spas, walking, cycling, horse-riding, off road driving, shooting and many more to keep any non-golfer well occupied.
2) Duration of tour ?
What areas do you want to visit/ play in ? How many rounds do you realistically intend playing ? If you wish to focus on one area i.e. Fife, East Lothian, Ayrshire then one week will allow you to play a strong selection of courses in that specific area; particularly if you are willing and able to play two rounds on certain days. If you intend playing a range of courses spread over a number of regions i.e Highlands & Aberdeenshire/ Angus or possibly you are intent on playing the very best Scottish links courses you really should consider a two week tour as a minimum.
Sample programme: Classic Links including Open Championship Venues
Turnberry, Royal Troon, Prestwick, Gailes Links, Western Gailes, Royal Dornoch, Castle Stuart, Nairn, Cruden Bay, Trump Aberdeen, Royal Aberdeen, Murcar, Carnoustie, Monifieth, Old Course, Kingsbarns, Dumbarnie, Muirfield, Gullane, North Berwick
20 courses before you start thinking about the options of playing the 2nd courses available at Turnberry, Royal Dornoch, Carnoustie, Gullaneh
3) Standard of courses ?
Important to match up playing ability across the group with the choice of courses. Preferences will range from playing all the mighty links including the five current Open Championship venues to playing a combination of perhaps some lesser known layouts ( still challenging ) including both parkland as well as our renowned links. You should bear in mind that playing a series of links courses with the constant effect of the sea “ breeze “ can be physically demanding.
4) Standard of accommodation ?
The size/ make-up of your group will have a significant influence on the options for accommodation. Larger groups will need to be based in some of the larger, more prestigious venues. This may involve some extra daily travel to various courses especially to some of the more remote clubs.
What is the requirement at each hotel in terms of bedrooms i.e Doubles,Twins, Singles ?
Will you want to have dinner in hotel each night or visit local restaurants ?
5) On the courses
In Scotland the tradition is for walking on the golf course. Will your group want to carry their own bags ? Will anyone want to hire an electric trolley ? Will you want to hire caddies ? What about golf clubs ? Will everyone bring their own clubs or do you want to look at options for hiring clubs in Scotland ?
Any good Tour Operator will be able to advise on all of the above. You just need to put together the very best travelling group you can, get your game in shape and look forward to an incredible golf and travel experience.
” It’s a big world out there. It would be a shame not to experience it “