Is Flexible membership what golfers want?
After working in golf for over a decade, I've seen so many different membership schemes come and go...
You've got the standard 5 day & 7 day membership, which mainly cater for the avid golfer. What seems to be the new thing is the 'flexible membership', where golfers pay for when they play. Looks like statistics show that golf courses that don't adopt this style will suffer and potentially fall into liquidation.
The aim is meant to be to cater for the younger generation who cannot afford full membership. My only argument would be, if you're that interested in golf, full membership is affordable, as in fairness it will stop you from splashing out more cash on other leisure activities: cinema, days out, etc.
Personally, i think membership at a golf course actually helps save money. A number of individuals moan that golf takes 'too long' to play and doesn't give them enough time to do anything else. Well, if we are in a time of economic hardship, i say join a golf club! It'll save you splashing out on other activities and is a great form of exercise.
Anyone else agree?
Reply : Tue 24th Jun 2014 14:15
I think clubs need to look at reciprocal arrangements as well as flexible golf memberships. I live and work within a 10 minute drive of my golf club and am therefore there every few days for either practice or 9 holes during the week or 18 holes at weekends.
Sometimes, we get bored of playing the same course and would like to play somewhere else so, we arrange a trip to another course within an hour's drive. Naturally, this means that I spend way more on golf per month than others and this isn't ideal. What would work for me would be to have an arrangement to play a couple of courses without too much extra expense.
I play a lot of golf and get more than my fair share from my membership but I am aware of loads of others that can't play more than once a month. Their membership is wasted
Last edit : Tue 24th Jun 2014 14:15
Reply : Tue 24th Jun 2014 14:44
I see what you mean. I wonder whether this is something that golf clubs would actually look into though...
I can see golf clubs thinking that they may lose customers to other clubs if they put forward such membership. Good idea, it's just persuading clubs to get involved...
Last edit : Tue 24th Jun 2014 14:44
Reply : Tue 24th Jun 2014 21:23
Crown golf have reciprocal membership with you being able to play at all there other coarses and deals with a company in France
Last edit : Tue 24th Jun 2014 21:23
Reply : Tue 24th Jun 2014 22:41
Once you join a club you may find that reciprocal golf is already available. Horsforth GC in Leeds for example is part of a "formed in 1906" group that includes Crans Sur Sierre in Switzerland and you can play there for free.
Last edit : Tue 24th Jun 2014 22:41
Reply : Wed 25th Jun 2014 07:56
We have a reciprocal with Royal Melbourne and can play there for free - it is a bit far though......
Last edit : Wed 25th Jun 2014 07:56
Reply : Wed 25th Jun 2014 10:38
I have looked into a flexible membership offer where you pay X per year and you get so many credits to use on rounds of golf. however as I really only paly weekends that is the most expensive time in relation to using credits so it will only allow 10 or 12 rounds, then I will have to top up. I would prefer a course to offer a weekend membership!
Last edit : Wed 25th Jun 2014 10:38
Reply : Wed 25th Jun 2014 10:46
I think quite a lot of older golf clubs have reciprocal membership but like Harry said some may prefer not to offer it as they feel they'll lose business this way. Also a lot of reciprocal golf is available with clubs in other countries so they don't lose membership but increase their reputation
Last edit : Wed 25th Jun 2014 10:46
Reply : Wed 25th Jun 2014 11:40
Some people I know are using the flexible membership as a method to get access to another course, with effectiviely a set of green fees at reduced prices. This is quite a good idea if you have some extra cash and have a local course that you will want to play a few times a year.
My course has eight reciprocals to choose from and they are very useful when wanting to vary your game.
Last edit : Wed 25th Jun 2014 11:40
Reply : Wed 25th Jun 2014 12:01
The only thing in my head, is that surely golf clubs have tried and tested the reciprocal membership, because if it was successful I imagine everyone would be doing it.
I do agree though, it does sounds like something golfers would take up.
The only issue with flexible membership is that they can become quite confusing, that's why I think customers get put off. If it was simple, I imagine a lot more golfers would be keen
Last edit : Wed 25th Jun 2014 12:01
Reply : Wed 25th Jun 2014 14:06
I'd love to see more "token based" memberships. At best I can only play two to three times a month so cannot justify a membership cost. Going back 15 years I was a member of Ravenmeadow in Worcester. It was (and possibly still is?) a lovely little 9 holer with great practice facilities. The token membership let me pay about £100 for 8-10 rounds (depending on days cashed in), access to the practice areas and entitlement to play in comps/hold a congu handicap and even got a few free rounds playing for the club team against local rivals. I'd jump at something similar if it were offered round Sheffield.
Last edit : Wed 25th Jun 2014 14:06
Reply : Sat 28th Jun 2014 20:37
We have a scheme in Edinburgh, where you can play 13 other courses at a reduced rate , around £10,/12, helps when you want a change. My own course folded in December, along with a neighbouring course. There is a problem and it needs addressed.
Last edit : Sat 28th Jun 2014 20:37