20 Items to Pack in Your Golf Bag
Is anyone else out there guilty of slinging an empty golf bag? (lol!)
But seriously though, even with all those fancy pockets on my golf bag, the first year or so that I played, I went out with the bare bones necessities.
What I learned from this is that if you head to the golf course with just your clubs, golf balls, tees and good company, I truly believe that you’ll still have fun time playing! I mean, it's a fun sport.
...You'll likely just have to borrow everything you're missing from your friends.
Which can be fun! But can also get old, quickly.
So, if you're new to this sport, looking to be prepared (and who doesn’t want to at least know what it takes to be prepared?), want to play more competitively, or even play with strangers, then there’s actually a lot you’ll need to pack in your golf bag.
Oh, and this post comes with a free checklist to help you prepare for your next round and fit in with the regulars! Click below to get your copy!
Let's cover the very basics first!
12- 14 clubs + head covers. Clubs are obvious but head covers maybe not so much. Head covers are designed to protect the heads and shafts of your woods from the damage that can occur when your clubs jostle around in your golf bag. Golfers tend to have head covers that are meaningful to them, for example Tiger Woods has Frank, The Tiger, as a head cover.
Golf glove. I prefer Titleist or FootJoy. Titleist makes their gloves a bit thinner, which is great for feeling the club. But they just don't last. And FootJoy is great for those who want a little more comfort. Make sure you get a glove for the opposite of your dominant side. For example, I'm right handed, so I wear a glove on my left hand.
Tees. I always pack double the amount of tees as the holes I'm playing. In other words, if I'm playing 9 holes, I pack 18 tees. And when I buy a fresh pack, I just toss the entire pack in there. These wooden biodegradable tees are my favorite, but I also have these tees with a marker, which have yellow line indicators to help with height when setting up to tee off.
Golf Balls. New and/or shag balls (a.k.a previously used - great for when you’re tired of watching new balls land in the pond or getting them lost in the woods - lol!). I mostly useNoodle Golf Balls, because they're the very forgiving.
And, now, let's get ready to play with the best of them!
20(+5) ITEMS TO PACK IN YOUR GOLF BAG
Protective Pouch. I can't tell you how many times I've arrived at the golf course after work and realized that I had no where safe to put my grandmothers ring, my earrings, necklace and watch! A small protective travel casethat fits inside your golf bag is so necessary! I also recommend a packing up a freezer size zip lock bag too - if it downpours on you, you can quickly move items into it for extra protection.
Water bottle. Water, ideally with electrolytes, is so necessary for 2+ hours in the summer sun! I prefer a S'well water bottle - they really do keep water very cold!
Cell phone battery charger. If you've been reading the blog for a while, you probably already know that I don't believe in checking my cell phone when I'm on the golf course. But, I do believe in taking pictures and videos with friends out there. Plus I think the summer sun kind of takes it out of the battery. So I always pack up an extra phone charger.
Golf towel + golf club brush and club groove cleaner. I swear, these are the first things I forget! (lol!) But they're key for when your hands/clubs get dirty between swings. I recommend multiple towels, and something like this cleaning brush will be perfect for cleaning your golf clubs. Or this combo set of both works, if you don't have either. PRO TIP: Always remember to clean your clubs - they will get rusty if you let dirt sit on them (...and the dirt disrupts impact when you hit the ball, thus you have less control over the outcome of your shot.)
Putting marker. This can be a quarter (yes, bring along a quarter) if you don’t have a marker!
Wallet and cash. I recommend always having some cash on you when at the golf course. Typically, food carts are cash only.
Snacks. Protein bars, trail mix, etc. – you will be hungry! And the food carts typically offer just crackers. (Not sure what to pack for a snack? This post on golf course snackshas you covered!)
Sun screen and/or bug spray. You will need these! Sun, flying buys and bits can very distracting! I like Neutrogena products, and I prefer an SPF of 70 - like this sunscreen here.
Business cards! Always keep business cards on you because you'll never know who you'll meet on the golf course! :)
Sun glasses. Preferably ones that won't slide when swinging a golf club. :)
Chap stick/lip stick.
Any feminine care products.
A hat. See #8; it really does make a difference when there's too much sun. I like a standard white baseball cap; it goes with everything!
Tissues. Between spring allergies, walking a lot and the cold fall weather of New England, I can't seem to make it through a round without needing tissues!
Band-aids or a travel-size first aid kit. Just in case. And not a massive one. I like this easy to pack little guy! :)
Allergy meds, pain relief meds, and eye drops. Bad seasonal allergies? A tension headache? Sore muscles from yesterdays workout? If you're playing with a competitive group, best to be prepared and keep these in your bag!
Extra layers or rain gear. Jacket, pants, hat, rain gloves, extra socks! If you're playing in a tournament they will not stop play for rain, only for thunder/lightning.
Rain cover/hood for your bag. You can purchase a separate rain cover for your golf bag and toss it in one of the pockets. Not the cutest thing in the world, but again totally necessary for downpours!
A Sharpie. To mark your golf balls. Yes, go ahead and write right on them! Otherwise, remember to remember your golf ball brand. :)
Score card + pencil. You can pick them up in the club house before your round starts. The price is right for these because they're both free!
Ideally, there wouldn't be a golfer out on the golf course without all of these items, because they are all part of playing the game well.
But around here...
I believe that golf is all about who you play with (click here to the about page to read more on this)! So, depending on your crowd you might also want to add/swap few more items into your bag:
Golf selfie stick. This golf selfie stick is the one I own, and I love it! For practicing and fun on the golf course!
Night golf balls- these are pricey, so I recommend buying in bulk!
Rangefinder. This is a big time investment, but knowing the distance of your next shot helps you immensely both on the course golf and when practicing! The other option is to download an app, which helps you with approximate yardage. I use GolfShot!
USGA Rule Book - there are new rules for 2019, so if you're headed out with a competitive crowd, this will help you out out there!
So, there's actually a lot to consider when packing up your golf bag!
Did the above list just make you feel excited to get out on the course? I was SO unprepared for my first round that I created a checklist so that I fit in with the regulars! I still use it nearly 4 years later to make sure I’m ready for the golf course. If you want a free copy, click below and it'll be sent to you ASAP!
I've learned to pack everything the night before when I'm playing with my more serious crowd because it's best not to slow anyone down by showing up late for your tee time. ...And everything can wait until the point I have to start rushing when I play with my more relaxed crowd. :)
Also, I've learned that being extra prepared for any situation you might find yourself in out on the course can also make you everybody's new best friend, even strangers! Because when something goes wrong for them you'll likely be able to help out your fellow golfer. Which also reminds me to note that kindness on the golf course goes a long way!
So, what do you do with all of these golf accessories?
If you don't have a golf bag yet, make no mistake about it, modern golf bags are designed with every bell and whistle possible to help you out on the course - including storing all of this.
...Which probably brings you to the few next logical questions: which type bag do you need, and how do you organize all of this? Luckily, I've already created two posts answering these very questions! Have a read here on How to Pack Your Golf Bag andThe Four Different Types of Golf Bags - Explained before you go for the day!
P.S. And before I go for the day, I want to invite you to join the community of 700+ positive, supportive, fun loving female golfers! Sign up below!