My Top-10 Pet Peeves at Golf Courses and Resorts

Last week I shared some of "the little things" I really appreciate at golf courses and resorts.

(Thanks to Cliff R., Pete L., Neil G., Ken B., Bill P., Scott D., and everyone else who shared their comments, too.)

Today, I'd like to go the opposite way and talk about some of the things that drive me nuts (and, yes, I'd like to know your thoughts on this one, too).

For any golf course and resort managers reading this, please stop doing this stuff...

My Top-10 Pet Peeves at Golf Courses and Resorts

Slow Check-In. I just spent a lot of time and energy getting to your property. Why, oh, why do you drag things out even more? You know everyone's arrival date and most likely arrival time, so please staff accordingly. And what's with all the pecking on the computer? I'm trying to rent a room, not buy the entire hotel.

Lack of Coordination. Dear resort marketing department: please introduce yourself to the reservations team and front-of-the-house staff. To find them, just look for the people being yelled at by customers for not knowing about all the packages and promotions you dream up.

Thin Walls. I'm happy you've been able to drive down your construction costs, but when I can tell the guy two doors down is suffering from post-nasal drip, there's a problem. Install some insulation, please.

Perplexing Starters. If the foursome scheduled directly ahead of me is happy to let my twosome tee off first (because it makes all the sense in the world), why, Mr. Starter, do you have a problem with it?

Cart Path Only Policy. Barring wet conditions, please let me drive to my ball...or at least 90 degrees to it. I promise my cart's tiny, bald tires won't inflict any more damage than the knobby ones on your big tractors, sprayers, and mowers.

Getting Gouged. Kudos for stocking things a visiting golfer might need (yardage books, balls, tees, water) but when you charge me double or triple the going price, it doesn't say, "Don't worry, we've got your back," it says, "Ha, we've got you over a barrel."

Hunger. If you're set up to begin taking people's money for 7 am tee times, you owe it to them to sell coffee and something edible starting at 6:30 am.

Oblivious Grounds Crew. Guys, I know you work hard and would rather be swinging a golf club than a weed wacker, but please shut it down and/or don't fire it up in my backswing. That's the power tool equivalent of yelling "Noonan" when I'm hitting.

Slow Play. It's enough already. Solve it.

And my number one pet peeve at golf courses and resorts...

Maintenance Surprises. For Lord's sake, tell me about any maintenance projects before I book my tee time. Do you really think I won't notice hundreds of holes in the greens or that I'm playing the same nine twice? Or that it's not going to ultimately cost you more dealing with complaints, refunds, and loss of repeat business?

Whew, it felt good to get that off my chest.

Try it: What are your top pet peeves at golf courses and resorts?

Please share your thoughts or read what others are saying below.

Craig Better is one of the founding editors of Golf Vacation Insider. In addition to traveling to 15 foreign countries, he has twice traveled across America to play golf courses in all 50 United States. Prior to joining Golf Vacation Insider, Craig was a freelance writer who contributed to GOLF Magazine, Travel + Leisure Golf, Maxim Magazine,, and co-authored Zagat Survey’s book, America’s Top Golf Courses.
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Unless you are playing at a private course, nobody will stop there machine for you. I especially don't because half the time I won't be able to get the thing to start again

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Whether or not it is "in your head" may depend on the course you're playing. There are definitely courses where the front nine kind of gets you going into the back nine, where meat of the course is. This isn't always the case, though. You might try looking the Ratings and Slopes of courses up on the GHIN website, because they will show you ratings of each individual nine. You might be surprised to learn that a course's back nine is actually rated *easier* than the front, and potentially by a shot or two.

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I don't know if it's just me or not but I absolutely hate back nine starts. I know it is necessary some times but it just seems like the courses I play seem to flow better when playing the front nine first. I normally shoot 3 to 5 strokes worse when starting on the back nine. Maybe it's just in my head.

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If u have a bar cart please stiock it! Some nuts, pretzels wine for the ladies! Something diet that's caffeine free instead of Diet Coke! Healthy options please please not just beer and water!!! Aspirin / ibuprophin maybe matches cigars. Hot coffee on cold days! Come on I'm tired of seeing an empty cart with a bag of chips and a few waters and beer!!! You have an oppertunity to sell USE IT!!

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Slow golfers really get my thingies in a wad. I don't mean the ones that take their time with a few practice swings, checking things out like they should and such. I mean the ones that bloody lollygag. I swear some of those folks do it just to aggravate the rest of us. If you have a group right on your heels and especially if there is nobody in front of you, let them pass. Period. Don't be an arse. There is no reason you should not let them pass. We had to force past a couple guys once. It really did wad their panties right up tight. It was two guys, young guys mind you, who might have been bogey golfers at best. I may be giving them too much credit. It started at the first hole. In fact since there were two of them and three of us we let them start first. What a mistake. By the time they were putting on the first green we knew it was going to be very interesting. I won't go into all the things they did wrong, but make a list and you probably won't get all of them. Finally on about the 5th hole, while they were in between trying to find a ball in a pond and then crossing to the other side of another fairway to find the other guys ball, we all drove the green, or close, putted/pitched and were gone. A hole later the assistant manager came screeching up, asking us all sorts of stuff and accusing us of things that those two had apparently reported. Since the course had new carts with a tracking system that could monitor the location of each cart at any time, I just asked him to check that and it should explain itself. Never heard anything again from the club and never saw those lollygaggers again that day. A slow pace based on determination, care and consideration regarding improving your game is one thing. A lollygagger on the golf course is unacceptable. I think we should water board all of them, at the least.

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Two pet peeves...not fixing ball marks on the greens. I hate that people don't take a few seconds to check and fix their ball marks. The second is courses letting people start off on hole number 10. My husband and I walk and play in about 3 hours, we always start with the first tee time available which means many days we are up at 5:30. There is nothing worse for my game than making a turn to suddenly finding ourselves waiting in line to tee off on 10. Our three hour round suddenly turns into 4 hours and that course becomes our last choice for any future rounds. We have started asking if the course allows starting on 10 and if they do we cancel or simply don't book our tee time there.

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i work on maibtenance on golf course...alot of thimgs isnt a part of mainance crew u listed...but like not sellin coffe at 630 or not having rangers...wuch i agree.they should have rangers tgat move along the pace of the course. it gets eveyone mocing along faster and makes the xourse look better cause gey nake sure they put divets back etc. but what you said about maintenance, alot of it is kibda impossible.if we stopped workin when we see every single golfer.we would be there until ten at night. we have a schedule to keep to. wr are told onluly to stop when golfers are right by us exept when mowing green...we dont stop then because it could damage green stopping with mowers on. whether you use puch mowers or on ride ob greens mower. and we cant always start at the back hole because there usually people on back nine guys aibt tgevonly one on course. there hundreds of people on course sometime on a busy day. we will run into golfers no matter what and cant always stop for them.we come in at 5 am to try to miss them as muxg ad possible.but if we krep stoppin for evey golfer no work would get done and the course would look like shit...then yall would cry about how the course looks vad.and about the cart path only policy...if we didnt hace that policy...(it noylt on every hole it rotates hole or no carts on grass when wet) you golfers would tear it up.our course only has six msibtence people...and while us driving on the grass will cause some damage when wet...itll be nothing comared to if hundreds of golf carts would ve riding on grass tgats too much stress for grass and would only take a day to ruin grass in fairway escspeccially if it wet. while workin at this course i noticed alot if golfers lack common scence( or just dobt care).not alll..but some. i came incges away from getting hit with balls countless times.but the golf carts are only elctric too and lack the abilty to go up hill ecspessially in wet condisions. to you guys will be spinning tires or sliding on course tearing up grass...on fairways too where grass is short with small i cant say i agree with forfet your bot the only golfer there

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We found a good solution for people that don't follow the cart path only policy. GPS in carts.

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Wow, I am not sure where you all are playing but the course I manage (a muni no less) works very hard to make sure our golfers have a great experience. Are we perfect, no, but we do all we can to make and keep those who come to our course happy!

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How about the course being less than at its best and still charging full greens fees? Greens suck with all those little holes and sanding.................reduce the green fee until the aeration is healed!! A par round counts 2 putts for every hole so the course is 50% less than at its best when they aerate the greens............but the green fees are still at 100%!!

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