Golfing at St. Andrew's Scotland?

Old Dec 20th, 2007, 03:45 PM
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Golfing at St. Andrew's Scotland?

Hi everyone! We are in need of a little advice. My husband & I are in the very early stages of planning his 50th birthday celebration. Our plan is to travel to Scotland with a few friends to play golf at the old St. Andrews golf course as well as a few of the other golf courses. Our question is: when is the best time time of year to go to Scotland and have a chance of playing the old course at St. Andrews? Once that is figured out then we can decide on where to stay etc. Thanks again for all your help....ptm
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Old Dec 20th, 2007, 05:56 PM
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Hi ptm

If you have not already you may want to go to to read about getting times at the Old Course. If you are all trying to play together I think you will have difficulty between April and October 2008. If you are willing to play as twosomes, we have had good luck in both April and early May with the daily lottery (for play the next day) and by just showing up and fitting in with another twosome. But with a large group you might have starting times spread out over a few hours.
Old Dec 21st, 2007, 12:24 AM
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Here's some strange but valuable information: There is a town called Coober Pedy in the desert area of South Australia. The major activity there is the mining of black opals. The town has a golf course that is completely devoid of grass, liberally covered with stone, and players carry a small piece of artificial turf which they put under the golf ball every time they play a shot. It might well be golf at its most primitive, but membership is available. Here's the punchline: Coober Pedy Opal Fields Golf Club is the only golf club in the world that has reciprocal membership rights with St Andrews! So if you want guaranteed casual access to St Andrews GC, try becoming a member at Coober Pedy!
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Old Dec 21st, 2007, 03:08 AM
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Are women allowed in the Club House yet? Can they play the old course yet? Do you and your group all have legitimate handicaps (you'll need them to play any of the courses), or at least you did a few years ago.
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Old Dec 21st, 2007, 03:13 AM
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I like that information about Coober Pedy Opal Fields Golf Club. Are the members at St. Andrews not worried that visiting members might pick up the divots and carry them away rather than replace them?
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Old Dec 21st, 2007, 03:24 AM
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Noone is allowed into R&A Golf Club House (golf's ruling body) unless accompanied by a member. But there are other club houses dotted around which allow entry (often for a fee).
Women can play any of the courses including Old Course, and handicap certificate is only required for playing the Old Course (max 24 for men, 36 for women).
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Old Dec 21st, 2007, 08:07 AM
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Thank you very much for all the great information. I would not of thought to ask if women can play on the old course. Good question!!! I will be asking. Even if the women cannot play the old course it is okay with me as long as my husband gets to play there.It is his dream! Yes, lucky for us everyone has a good handicap. I love the idea of joining the course in Australia. I will look into it. Thanks very much for the advice regarding playing with twosomes etc. that is good info. Again thanks everyone. We need all the help we can soon...ptm
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Old Dec 26th, 2007, 04:50 AM
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You missed the bit about women being able to play the Old Course. Of course (boom boom!) they can. It's a municipal course you know?

You can't walk on at the Old Course. To book a tee at the Old Course in advance you phone, probably about a year in advance on 01334 466666 and ask for advance reservations.

Thereafter you can only get a tee by going through the daily ballot procedure. You phone the links committee on 01334 466666 the day before you want to play before 2pm (For Mondays you phone on Saturdays). You tell them the names of the golfers and their handicaps. (If you are picked you will have to show handicap certificates) and you tell them your home clubs. The ballot is then picked at random. They have on average 12-15 slots available per day.

The cost is £115 per round and the rounds are available for 2- 4 players

You can also try to play as a single or a pair on the actual day.
The starter will try to match you with a pair or a three ball if he can.

They suggest that you check the date in advance to ensure the tees are not booked for competition.

They suggest you turn up as early as possible to maximise your chances

They suggest you phone the day before after the ballot is drawn to find out how many two and three balls there are that you might join in with.

They say it happens a lot, but they guarantee nothing!
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Old Jan 3rd, 2008, 03:53 PM
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If it all goes horribly wrong and you can't get tee-off times for the Old Course:
(1) There ARE other courses in St Andrews and the Kingdom of Fife!
(2) There is no play on the Old Course on Sundays and anyone can just wander around the fairways (being photographed on the Swilken Bridge for example?) absolutely free as long as you don't even think about striking a golf ball.
(3) There's much, much more to Fife than the Old Course.
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