“How much?!” Shopping for golf clubs can be a budget killer at the best of times, but some of the priciest options out there can easily run you the best part of $1000. If you’re new to the sport, you’ve probably found yourself asking the following question: are expensive golf clubs worth it?
In this 2022 buying guide, we’ll be running through the main advantages to using more expensive clubs. We’ll explore who will benefit the most from them, who should look elsewhere, and what to keep in mind when shopping for clubs.
Read on to become a club-buying pro.
What’s the Difference Between Expensive and Cheap Golf Clubs?
It’s a reasonable assumption to think that performance is the distinguishing factor between cheap and expensive golf clubs. While this can sometimes be the case, it’s actually not the most noticeable difference:
The Materials Used
Once you expand your budget slightly, you’re going to have access to materials that cheaper brands just can’t manage. Full carbon fiber shafts, super-durable epoxies, and longer-lasting materials overall are likely to be used.
This can all contribute to a club that simply feels better in hand and handles much more smoothly. Consistency is another big difference in this regard. Top range golf clubs are checked thoroughly with very tight tolerances in mind. You won’t necessarily get this level of quality assurance with cheaper options.
Quality control and resulting durability are probably the two main differences that are most obvious in our opinion. While expensive clubs can hit your bank account hard, they should also last for many years into the future. Some brands are certainly better than others in this regard, but more premium clubs are generally built to last.
In theory, a lot more work has gone into the performance of higher-end clubs. They should be designed to strike the ball more accurately and launch it precisely the distance you’re hoping to achieve. While this can certainly be the case with some clubs, it’s worth keeping in mind that your skill level and strength as a player can be just as important here.
An expensive set of clubs isn’t going to magically slash your handicap overnight.
Not to sound too cynical, but sometimes it really is just about the size of the price tag. Flashier brands like to tempt new players with buzz words and ‘features’ that won’t necessarily help their game. If you’re worried that a specific set or club is over-promising, your best bet will be to check out reviews online.
Look for forum posts, trustworthy reviews, and YouTube videos that can help you form an opinion. There are tons of good expensive clubs out there, but it’s always worth double-checking to avoid wasting your money.
Are Expensive Golf Clubs Worth it for Beginners?
If you’re only a few games in, you still have a ton left to learn. For this reason, that expensive set of clubs might just amount to a hole in your wallet. It’s not that they’re pure snake oil – it’s just that you won’t necessarily have the skill level required to take advantage of their extra performance.
Premium clubs are built with intermediate and professional golfers in mind. This means that they require higher-than-average levels of strength, speed, and accuracy to use effectively. If you’ve got cash to burn and want to improve your game, paying for some lessons will probably be a better investment.
What About Experienced Players?
If you’ve got a few years under your belt, you may have reached the limit of what your more affordable clubs can achieve. If this sounds like you, it might be time to pick up a more expensive set of clubs.
Proceed with caution when doing so. The tips outlined below are designed to help you shop savvy every single time.
Buying Golf Clubs – Things to Consider
Whether you’re looking for the cheapest of the cheap or need something from the top shelf, it’s important to make sure you know what to look out for. Use our pointers below to get started.
Try Before You Buy
Some things can be bought online without a test ride first. With golf clubs, however, it’s always best to try them out first if at all possible. Until you’ve taken a few swings, you’ll have no way of knowing whether they’re right for you.
If you don’t have any golf stores in your area, sites like Golfbidder offer a 7-day free trial that we strongly recommend using. If you’re unhappy with the feel of a club, you can return it (as long as it’s in the same condition) for a full refund. Even better than this is trying out the clubs in a testing zone of a store. Taking just a few test swings can make a world of difference – trust us.
Get a Custom Fitting
Just as a heads up, this option will cost between $100 and $200. In our opinion, it’s worth every single penny. With a good custom fitting, your swing, height, and overall play style will all be taken into account. These data will then be used to make custom recommendations for the right kind of clubs for you.
While this kind of service is often used to recommend more premium clubs, it can also be a great way to get an idea of which affordable clubs would work best for you too.
Spend Your Money Where it Counts
If you’re a complete beginner, our advice is to buy a reasonable set of budget-friendly clubs and spend your money where it will really count – some decent training. A good coach will be able to lay a strong foundation for the future development of your golfing skill.
There’s Nothing Wrong With Second Hand
If you ask us, ‘second hand’ isn’t a dirty word in the world of golfing equipment. It’s important to double-check their condition, but you can save hundreds of dollars by picking up a used set instead.
Brand-new clubs are a bit like cars – they depreciate in value from the moment you buy them.
To sum up, expensive clubs can be worth it if you’re the right player, but this depends on your experience and skill levels. New players should stick to more affordable clubs. Intermediate and pro-level golfers have what it takes to utilize the more premium equipment out there.