Best Golf Club Travel Cases

Updated December 2019
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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
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Why trust BestReviews?
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We only make money if you purchase a product through our links, and we never accept free products from manufacturers. Read more  
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.Read more 
How we decided

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

43 Models Considered
6 Hours Researched
1 Experts Interviewed
510 Consumers Consulted
Zero products received from manufacturers.

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

Buying guide for best golf club travel cases

Last Updated December 2019

Traveling with golf clubs can be an ordeal, but having your clubs with you on the other end of the journey is worth the effort. A golf club travel case can make the whole process a lot smoother and will protect your clubs no matter your mode of travel.

If you’ve ever felt your heart constrict at the sight of your clubs bouncing down the baggage carousel or heard horror stories about airlines refusing to reimburse someone for the full cost of a broken custom-made club, you already know the importance of getting the right traveling case for your clubs.

These cases can be hard or soft, and they vary in material, padding, and design. There’s no one right case — your golf club travel case should be designed to meet the needs of you and your clubs. Our buying guide will walk you through the essential factors so you can find the right case to take your game anywhere.

Most golf club travel cases are large enough to store your clubs as well as your bag, making it easy to bring almost everything you need to play with you wherever you go.

Key considerations

Traveling with your golf clubs in tow can be a stressful experience. One of the most important things to consider is how you’re traveling.

Sea

If you’re traveling by sea, you’ll be able to carry your golf club travel case onboard the ship yourself. Cruise lines often make special exceptions for a long list of sports gear, including golf clubs. As long as you don’t use them on the ship, you’re free to carry them on board and store them in your room. In that case, any halfway decent travel case would be sufficient since you won’t need to worry about conveyor belts.

Land

Car

If you’re traveling by car, a soft travel case should meet your needs. You could put your golf clubs in the trunk of the car, on top of other luggage so they won’t be damaged. Some extra padding is advisable in case of sudden stops. Alternatively, you could strap them into the backseat with the seat belts.

Bus

This is where it starts to get a bit dicey. Baggage handlers on buses are often the bus drivers themselves. It’s not uncommon for them to allow you to load your bags yourself if you wish. Nonetheless, there will be other bags and suitcases in the cargo areas, and people loading their luggage after you may not realize how easy it is to break a golf club. If this is your mode of travel, consider a hard case with plenty of padding.

Train

The same logic applies if you’re traveling by train. The porters and baggage handlers aren’t in a gigantic rush, and luggage doesn’t always get thrown around willy-nilly, but you should still consider a well-padded travel case for your clubs. You might even consider a hard case if you don’t mind the cost.

Air

If you’re traveling by air and don’t have a hard travel case for your clubs, you’re asking for trouble. Luggage can be subjected to a good many bumps and bruises, and if your clubs are not protected by a well-padded hard case, they may not survive.

EXPERT TIP

Keep an eye on the total weight of your clubs, bag, and travel case. If your case exceeds 50 pounds, you could find yourself paying extra for the privilege.


Staff  | BestReviews

Features

Materials

Hard cases

Hard travel cases are often made from solid acrylonitrile butadiene styrene, or ABS, which is prized for its impact resistance and toughness. Some varieties retain their strength in temperatures as high as 176ºF. Cases made of ABS may not be bulletproof, but they’re awfully close to it.

Other hard cases are made from polyethylene, which is similar to ABS in most respects but with a bit more flex. The idea here is that a case with a small amount of give will bend before it cracks or breaks.

Soft cases

Travel cases with soft exteriors often use polyester Oxford cloth of varying degrees of toughness, along with foam padding to protect your clubs. The material will provide a great deal of protection against compression forces but far less against lateral impact forces than ABS or polyethylene.

Wheels

Two wheels

Golf club travels cases are heavy by design — they have to be to protect your clubs. Add the weight of your clubs and the fact that you’re carrying your case over your shoulder, and it becomes an exercise in endurance on those long walks from the parking lot. Soft cases almost all have two wheels and a handle, so they can be pulled just like you pull your suitcase.

Four wheels

Hard travel cases often take it one step further and feature four casters, each of which rotates 360º. This means the case will stand upright on the wheels by itself and can be pushed instead of pulled, if the occasion calls for it.

Padding

Soft cases usually have more padding than hard cases. Unfortunately, this leaves your clubs free to rattle around inside the hard case more than you’d like, even with the compression straps cinched down tight.

Many hard cases have quilted foam padding to cushion your golf clubs, but if the padding is minimal, you should pack some shirts, towels, or other soft items in and around the clubs to hold them in place.

Locking latches

Some cases, especially hard cases, have locking latches that still allow the TSA to open them for random inspections. For maximum protection, this is an essential feature.

ID window

We’re all familiar with the tags that attach to our luggage, but many golf club travel cases include a window for business cards or other forms of identification that will help you claim your luggage or retrieve it if it becomes lost. Not all manufacturers brag about this feature, so you may need to read some reviews to find out whether the case you’re considering includes an ID window.

EXPERT TIP

Side pockets on travel cases can be used to hold all sorts of small, easy-to-lose accessories.


Staff  | BestReviews

Accessories

While you’re shopping for a travel case, consider picking up a few other items to improve your game as well as your travel experience.

Golf locker: Samsonite Expanding Golf Trunk Locker Organizer
When you need to organize all your shoes, tees, shirts, gloves, and other accessories, this polyester trunk from Samsonite fits the bill. It comes in red, black, green, blue, and gray.

Travel cover support: Bag Boy Backbone Travel Cover Support System
If your soft travel case doesn’t have a telescoping travel cover to protect your golf clubs heads, this one from Bag Boy is what you need. It extends past the length of your golf clubs like a tent pole to hold up the end of the travel case so your club heads don’t take damage from something being dropped on the case.

Golf rangefinder: TecTecTec VPRO500 Golf Rangefinder
When you need to know the distance to the green, you can find it quickly and easily with this rangefinder from TecTecTec. Lightweight and portable, it can accurately measure up to 540 yards.

Tees: Pride Professional Tee System
This bag of 135 professional-length tees from Pride Professional is a great option to keep your bag well-stocked wherever you go.

Golf club travel case prices

Inexpensive: Under $100 is the low price range where you’ll find soft cases or small hard cases with only enough room for four or five clubs. There are some exceptions to this rule, of course

Mid-range: For $100 to $200, you will find a variety of hard cases that will meet the travel needs of most. Many features are available in this range, so it’s important to consider your options and the features you consider to be must-haves.

Expensive: Above $200 is the high price range for golf club travel cases. This is where deluxe travel cases are found. These cases are more of a fashion statement than a significant improvement in protection.

EXPERT TIP

Make sure the locks you purchase for your travel case are TSA-approved if you’re traveling by air.


Staff  | BestReviews

Tips

  • Put extra material between your clubs before tightening the internal compression straps. This will protect them from rubbing against each other too much.
  • You should always use a travel cover support with soft cases if the model you purchase does not include one.
  • Be sure that your golf club travel case receives a “Fragile” sticker. If the sticker is noticed by baggage handlers, they will hopefully treat your clubs gently.

Other products we considered

If our top recommendations didn’t meet your needs, there are a few other products we found during our research that may work well for you.

For a reliable midrange case, we like the Forgan Golf Hard Side Travel Case & Cover. It is TSA-approved, which means it meets all the requirements for airline travel. The rigid ABS plastic shell provides complete protection for your clubs when you're flying. It has four multi-directional wheels, stands upright by itself, and has internal compression straps to hold everything securely in place.

We also like the Himal Soft-Sided Golf Travel Bag. It is made of tough 600D polyester Oxford cloth to protect your clubs during travel. It has two wheels for easy transport through airline terminals and plenty of room inside for your bag and clubs. The zipper design is rugged, and it features an ID window to help identify your luggage, a Velcro handle, and extra storage pockets.

If you have more than one or two custom-made clubs, it might be worth your while to purchase additional insurance to cover them in case of loss. Be sure to include the case in your insurance along with the clubs.

FAQ

Q. Does a travel case guarantee my clubs won’t be damaged?
A.
No — it improves the odds they won’t be damaged, but nothing guarantees it.

Q. Are hard cases heavier than soft ones?
A.
You’d think so, but at least one of the cases we looked at is under 3 pounds. In most cases, you can expect hard cases to be somewhat heavier.

Q. Do key locks come with travel cases?
A.
Only if it comes built-in. Otherwise, you will have to purchase a lock separately.

The team that worked on this review
  • Ciera
    Ciera
    Digital Content Producer
  • Melinda
    Melinda
    Web Producer
  • Michael
    Michael
    Writer

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