Sunday, August 17, 2008

Links Golf Travel – Tips to an Affordable and Fulfilling Trip from “The Secretary”

Links Golf Travel – Tips to an affordable and fulfilling trip from “The Secretary”

Golf travel to the links courses of the British Isles and Ireland in the late eighties and early nineties was economical and there was little need to watch costs. Four and five star accommodations were affordable and green fees and ground transportation, even with a plush chauffeur driven coach, were inexpensive. All this came to a grinding halt with the arrival of the new millennium.

As the Euro currency got its legs and began its steady climb against the dollar, venues gradually became more and more expensive. During 2006-2007, the Euro exploded against the dollar and golf travel in “Links Land” suddenly became quite expensive, especially in the areas of the southwest of Ireland and in the regions of Scotland and England that contain host courses to the British Open (now known in Europe as simply “The Open”).

This post is the first in a three part series of our solution to keeping costs low on Links Golf Travel to the British Isles and Ireland:

1. Avoid golf travel companies. Plan your own itinerary securing your own reservations at all venues. Internet access has made this an inexpensive although time consuming process.

2. Auto, mini bus, and van rental provide self-drive savings over a chauffeur driven bus. With a chauffeur comes their lodging and meals expense as well.

3. Look for clean new holiday houses that are available on a weekly basis at reasonable prices. You must start early however, as these go quickly during the holiday travel time in Europe which runs from July through August. This is the best weather time period so competition for these houses is fierce. Such accommodations come as “self catering” which simply means you will be making your own bed, cooking your own breakfast and washing your own clothes.

This type of housing can be found by going to the government sponsored websites that have listings in all areas of the country you choose. Start your planning process in the fall of the year before the year that you plan to travel. Choose your holiday house in a central location to the courses you plan to play. Sometimes a weekly rental will give a savings even though you only use this for four or five nights.

Here are a couple of links to government sponsored websites. Keep in mind you could always do a simple Google search for this as well. (click on your region of interest)

In the next post, I'll cover tips number four through six which includes additional information on accommodations and golf course and tee time scheduling. As always, if you have any questions or tips you would like to share, please post a comment. I look forward to reading them!
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