Jupiter, Florida, United States: The latest consumer research from the National Golf Foundation (NGF) indicates that overall volume of golf trips could be down 35% to 40% in 2020 due to the Coronavirus.
The golf travel market overall in the US exceeds US$20 billion annually, a robust market that ranges from playing fees and accommodations to travel costs, meals and entertainment expenses.
It’s estimated that more than eight million golfers played golf while travelling for business or leisure last year.
TSA airport checkpoint data shows the number of air travellers in the US is off about 75% versus recent years and this trend is holding true among travelling golfers, most of whom say they’ll be driving to their golf destinations this year – and not necessarily close to home.
In recent years, almost 60% of golf trips were taken by car. For the rest of this year, the percentage of planned road trips to golf destinations jumps to approximately 75%.
Among those who still have a golf trip scheduled for this year, 76% say they’re willing to drive more than four hours each way.
The average one-way drive time for planned golf trips for the rest of 2020 is 6.4 hours, which is why it’s not surprising that many US golf resorts and destinations continue to aggressively target the drive-in market.
Almost one-third of core golfers with chronic wanderlust said they are willing to spend more than eight hours in the car, each way, for a golf getaway.