Etiquette and the hole in one rule
Although we really want you to have a brilliant game of golf, there are just a few rules of etiquette that makes for safer, more considerate golfing.
Just to give you a gentle reminder…
- Please ensure your mobile phone is on silent or vibrate only to avoid interrupting others on the course or in the clubhouse.
- Ensure others are at a safe distance before you swing your club, and likewise you keep your distance from their club swing area too.
- Never hit your ball until the players ahead of you are out of range.
- Never throw your clubs in anger or frustration.
- When practicing, do not swing in the direction of anyone else.
- Shout ‘Fore!’ should your ball look as though it is heading in the direction of other players – this will warn them of a possible incoming ball.
- When using a golf buggy, drive carefully and slowly and keep off the grass as much as possible. Take a couple of clubs with you when walking from your buggy to take your shot to save time if another club is needed. Never park on a green or by a hazard.
- Don’t make other groups have to wait for you, keep your round moving at a good pace and be ready for your shot. If you fall behind, allow faster players behind you to play through.
- Don’t spend too much time looking for lost balls, particularly if there are people following you.
- Should you choose to spend the full 5 minutes allowed in the rule book to look for lost balls, wave the group following you to play through.
- Always leave the putting green as soon as you have finished.
- Generally, in friendly matches, the player whose ball is furthest away from the hole hits first; however, you can ignore this rule should all players in your group agree, in favour of ‘ready play’, where players hit when they are ready.
- Always repair your divots in the fairway and your ball marks on the green.
- Avoid taking a divot on a practice swing.
- Rake over your footprints when leaving a sand bunker.
- Never talk whilst another player takes their shot.
- Never shout, unless it is to warn others about an incoming ball.
- Be aware of where your shadow falls on the putting green and never walk through someone else’s putt line, as this could change the grass direction altering the path of the ball.
The Hole in One Rule…should you be lucky enough…!
- You cannot play a round of golf by yourself and claim to have shot a hole in one.
You need witnesses who are with you in your round to have an official hole in one.
Those witnesses must sign your scorecard to attest that the hole in one is legitimate.
- If you are playing or practicing by yourself and you happen to hit a hole in one, it will not be recognized unless you have two witnesses.
- Golfers must play a round of nine or eighteen holes, a golfer who successfully puts the ball in the hole on his tee shot has earned his hole in one. However, if a golfer gets a hole in one on the fourth hole, then rain comes and the course becomes unplayable, the hole in one will not be recognized. A golfer must play at least nine holes for a hole in one to be official.
- The golfer must start his hole from the official tee off area. The golf course has a recognized tee area for each hole.
Hole in One Golfer’s Duty
There’s an “unofficial” rule which has become a tradition among golfers. If a golfer is lucky enough to strike a hole in one, he will celebrate properly after his round is over, by buying a round of drinks for everyone in the club, at the bar at that particular time. This unofficial rule is almost always followed and normally, the golfer is thrilled to fulfil this obligation. However, some golfers in large clubs do take a ‘hole in one’ insurance policy to cover the enormous bar bill!