June 2023 Industry Report

I am pleased to report our partnership with domestic American Airlines Admirals Clubs is now entering its 20th year.  With so few other publications on display, in some ways it feels like we have an exclusive with the airline.  Along with our distribution in private golf clubs, most Delta Sky Clubs and most American Express Centurion clubs, I believe we deliver a powerful demographic of readers through print, social, and digital platforms.


Have you considered if your golf carts are considered motor vehicles by your insurance company? Recent court cases in New York and New Jersey have added to ambiguity. Different courts have considered golf carts “golfmobiles” and “motorized land conveyances.” Thus changing the outcome of lawsuits. The bottom line: the analysis never begins by assuming an answer.

Expansion and Contraction

According to the National Golf Foundation, there’s been a net decline of about 2,200 18-hole equivalent courses – or 13% – decline in operating golf courses in recent years. Only twice in the history of golf has there been a sustained contraction: The Great Depression and The Great Recession. In contrast, there have been three periods of sustained expansion: the 1920s, 1960s, and 1990s. There are currently more all-new golf course projects in active construction than at any time in more than a decade. And yet, course openings remain limited – averaging about 13 (as measured in 18-hole equivalents) over the past 10 years.

Handicapping Golf

In 2022, the USGA recorded 75,560,694 rounds posted for handicap purposes. Interestingly, 15% of those rounds were only nine-hole scores. Not surprisingly, Florida golfers posted the most rounds at 13.2%…then California at 11.9%…and Texas at 4.7%.