What makes a great golf travel bag? Of all the points to consider when looking for a bag to protect your favorite golf gear on the road to St. Andrews or Pebble beach or wherever your golf game may take you this year, the two most important are probably price and protection. Beyond these two, there is quite an assortment of bags on the market that will likely meet your needs.
The first decision for you to make is hard or soft shell? Hard shell cases do offer the most protection for your valuable golf clubs, but there are a few significant strikes against them to think of as well. First, they tend to be significantly more expensive than most soft shell bags. Also, they tend to be much heavier than your average soft bag and they have no give at all when attempting to fit them into limited spaces like rental car trunks.
That said, there are many very high quality soft sided bags on the market that offer great protection to your clubs, fit massive volumes of gear and add very little weight to your luggage. Some companies are even offering very attractive guarantees against damage. The Izzo Golf Club Protection Guarantee in 2009, for instance, claims that if any club is damaged while traveling by airplane, they will re-shaft your club at no charge.
Price varies widely on golf travel bags, even among the soft shell varieties. You should expect to pay somewhere between $70 and $320 to protect your bag. To some extent, it is a “you get what you pay for” proposition. The higher the price, the more protection is built into the bag. However, once you get over the $170 range, you start paying for size and capacity. So don’t buy the most expensive model if you’re not carrying a tour pro’s staff bag.
Size. Weight. Convenience.
The best bit of advice on size is to make sure your travel bag or cover fits your golf bag and clubs closely. A small golf bag inside a large travel bag will bounce around and offer much less protection than for the clubs it was designed for. Most of the soft cover bags have heavy-duty padding around the club heads, but are still made of lightweight material for your convenience in getting around the airport and other places. Look for a bag that has several handles along the sides of the bag for easy handling. A set of wheels is also a great convenience and easier on your back and shoulders. You do want to be in good shape when you tee off.
Wear and Tear
When it comes to soft sided luggage, make sure you choose something made of durable material. Most are made of some variation of nylon and may or may not be waterproof. Take a look at the seams and make sure they are all stitched solidly and won’t come apart easily. Once you’re confident of that, pick your bag and enjoy your travels.
Some of the Best
- A few of the best and most popular golf travel bags out there by brand are:
- Bag Boy