We all love to get away on a golf holiday but given the number of options available, what can help you decide when and where to go? We asked Stuart Ridley of Golf Escapes what his five Top Tips for making a good golf holiday, a great one…
1. Top Tips for Golf Holidays – Location, Location, Location…
Choosing your location is obviously one of the most important parts in ensuring your golf escape is the trip you have been hoping for.
There are a few things to consider when deciding where to take your partner, friends, colleagues or golf society/group.
Firstly, are you looking for peace and quiet or are you after a few lively nights out?
If it is a quiet weekend/week away you are looking for, then maybe base yourself at one of the many wonderful ‘Golf Resorts’ around Europe…
Golf resorts such as Aphrodite Hills in Cyprus, La Finca Golf Resort in the Costa Blanca and PGA Catalunya in the Costa Brava, all offer a unique holiday of high-end luxury with fantastic golf on site.
Normally, this type of location will appeal to someone looking for total relaxation without having to leave the resort, or spend too much time travelling whilst on holiday.
However, if you like the ‘party’ side of your golf trips, then there are plenty of towns that can fulfil your expectations;
Spanish towns such as Benalmadena & Fuengirola in the Costa del Sol, Benidorm in the Costa Blanca and Los Alcazares in Murcia fit this bill.
Meanwhile, in Portugal, there are destinations such as Vilamoura & Alvor in the Algarve, all of which have plenty of nightlife to compliment your day’s golf.
2. Top Tips for Golf Holidays – Try something new…
There are so many fantastic golf courses, hotels, and golf resorts around the world that it is always worth trying something new every now and then.
It is very easy for people to stick to the things they know and love, and I am guilty of it myself.
That is where a golf specialist like ourselves can help (other brands are available!)…
At Golf Escapes, there is always someone in the office who has visited a destination that you may not be aware of.
If you are used to going to Alvor, why not try heading further east in the Algarve to Tavira?
It is a stunning Portuguese town with plenty of bars and restaurants for you to enjoy in the evening.
Not to mention the fact you have the best golf course in Portugal – Monte Rei – just 15 minutes down the road.
However, for those looking for Winter sun, it is not just the Canary Islands that offer you the perfect golfing destination.
In recent years, new golfing locations in countries such as Morocco, Cyprus and Turkey have become available with courses such as Assoufid & Samanah in Morocco, Aphrodite Hills & Elea in Cyprus and Carya & Montgomerie in Turkey.
In addition, there are a number of world-class golf courses to try.
For instance, if you like Marbella, try Prague or Girona.
If you want the best golf, go and visit the Silver Coast north of Lisbon.
With so many superb places to explore, there no reason to keep going back to the same places each year.
3. Top Tips for Golf Holidays – Book early…
It is a bit of a myth that the best deals are only available when booking last minute!
Of course, there are often last minute deals to be had, but the best ones are always when booking early.
The majority of hotels offer early booking discounts when booking a certain amount of time before a travel date.The earlier you book, the higher the reduction.
We would always advise groups to try and get their trip booked 10 – 12 months before they travel.
Not only do you get the best prices, you also get the pick of the tee times.
With resorts getting busier, year on year, the tee times and hotel availability becomes limited a lot earlier than they used to, so get in there early!
4.Top Tips for Golf Holidays – The Flights…
When choosing your Golf Escape, don’t forget about the flights.
It is very easy to get carried away with getting prices together for lots of lovely golf resorts and packages, but if you can’t physically get there on time and in the budget, it can ruin all the plans you have made.
Although we would always advise people to book the hotel and golf package first, don’t forget to check the flights in advance.
www.skyscanner.net is a fantastic tool to help you do this, as is www.kayak.co.uk.
On sites such as these, you can easily search your preferred departure airport, dates and times, and literally search the whole globe for the cheapest flights around there are.
So if flights to Alicante, Faro, or Malaga come up with the best deals, then why not try golfing there?
It is a great way of starting your search, knowing that you already have the cheapest flights available.
However… do act quickly, as flight costs fluctuate every day.
5. Top 5 Tips for Golf Holidays – Budget…
Make sure you go into the process of organising a holiday with a budget in mind.
Everybody has a budget they need to work too (even the most affluent) and we recommend you stick to it as closely as possible.
If you don’t, costs can soon spiral out of control.
And the last thing you want is for your trip to begin with a debate with your fellow golf travellers, arguing about how….“ We could have got the deal cheaper somewhere else”.
Yep, we all know who they are.
Furthermore, it is very easy to find the cheapest hotel and the cheapest golf course only to find out that your flight then pushes you over budget.
Finally, feel free to call us (even if you just want advice), we love helping golfers find the best golf holiday, for them!
By Stuart Ridley (Golf Blogger at Golf Escapes).