A 14-way bag with full-length dividers. Features cart-friendly bottom and easy-to-adjust padded straps for carry. Nine pockets include full-length clothing pocket, hydration pouch, and water-resistant valuables pocket.
Some may prefer heavy leather bags.
A 7-way top with multiple handles. Dual-strap system makes it easy to carry around. Pockets are well-designed and make it easy to locate items you need. Stand is durable and simple to pull out. Weighs less than 5 pounds.
Straps can be hard to remove if you want to use it as a cart bag.
Lightweight ripstop fabric. The 14-way stand bag comes with a self-balancing strap system. Includes hip pad. Weighs only 5.4 pounds. Offers 9 pockets, including a soft-lined valuables pocket, cell phone sleeve, and insulated water pocket.
Does not have full-length dividers.
A 14-way top with full-length dividers and integrated handles. Works as a stand bag but also cart/trolley-friendly. Sports 9 pockets, including expandable double apparel pockets and water bottle pockets.
A little larger than a typical carry bag.
Versatile bag works as a cart or carry bag. Detachable, comfortable straps also allow for easy cart attachment. Has 14 full-length dividers. Comes with insulated pocket for food or drink and a rain hood.
Some feel the straps need breaking in for comfort.
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Whether you’re new to the game, one birdie away from joining the pro circuit, or somewhere in the middle, when you step onto the green you need a quality bag to hold your golf clubs. The right golf club bag not only keeps your clubs organized and prevents them from scratching or damaging each other, it also neatly stores your balls, tees, and other golf accessories.
Today’s golf club bags are sleeker, lighter, and come with more desirable features than the clunky models of the past. Few modern golf club bags are heavy leather. Instead, most golf club bags are made from strong, lightweight synthetic materials that resist stains, dirt, and moisture.
There are five basic types of golf club bags. When deciding on the right bag for you, consider whether you mostly ride in a golf cart or walk the course and how much gear you typically carry.
Carry bags are the simplest type of golf club bag, and they are designed for the golfer who prefers to walk the course without carrying a whole lot of heavy equipment. You’ll often find these golf club bags referred to as “Sunday bags,” as they are favored by the casual golfer who hits the course on the occasional weekend. Carry bags are the lightest type of golf club bag – most only weigh around two pounds. They have fewer pockets and club dividers than other golf club bags, and they are constructed from lighter materials, with polyester being the most common.
Stand bags are basically carry bags but with the addition of two retractable legs that let you prop up the bag while you take your swing. The legs make these golf club bags a little bit heavier than basic carry bags, but they are still usually quite lightweight, with most weighing around five pounds. Often stand bags also have backpack-style shoulder straps to make it even easier to walk the course while carrying your clubs. Stand bags are the most versatile type of golf club bag, and they are favored both by golfers who walk the course and those who prefer to ride in a cart.
As the name implies, cart bags are used by golfers who ride the course in a golf cart, rather than walking. They also work well in a golf push cart, if you like to walk but don’t want to carry your golf club bag. Cart bags generally have many more dividers and pockets than carry bags and stand bags, making them heavier, around six to seven pounds on average. Most of these golf club bags have a rubbery base that keeps them from slipping off the cart. Cart bags are more popular with competitive golfers than with more casual players.
Staff bags, also called tour bags, are what the pros carry – or rather what their caddies carry for them. These heavy, top-of-the-line golf club bags have lots of storage pockets and many dividers to keep expensive clubs from rubbing together. Generally weighing more than 10 pounds, staff bags are often made of premium materials, and they are nicely styled as well.
Travel bags aren’t for use on the course. Instead, travel bags cover your entire golf club bag to protect the contents while traveling. Travel bags generally have large straps and zippers, and they are padded for extra protection. Most fold or roll up for easy storage when not in use.
Once you’ve determined which type of golf club bag best suits your needs, it’s time to consider various features.
Even the simplest Sunday bag has two or three pockets, and many golf club bags have far more. You’ll want enough pocket space to hold balls, tees, keys, your cell phone, an umbrella – many bags have a pocket or slot specifically for this – as well as any gadgets or necessities you like to use on the course. A lined pocket for valuables, an insulated pocket for beverages, and a waterproof pocket for scorecards and electronic gadgets are nice features.
In the highest-quality golf club bags, dividers reach the full height of the bag. Less expensive golf club bags generally have a plastic divider grid just at the top of the bag. Either way, you’ll find bags with as few as four divided spaces – these are suitable for the infrequent or very casual player – all the way up to professional bags divided into 15 sections to hold a full complement of clubs.
For most players who hit the green somewhat regularly, a golf club bag with six to 10 dividers is plenty. However, if you take your game very seriously and have a full set of clubs, you’ll prefer a bag with 14 or 15 spaces.
Unless your golf club bag is never going to leave the cart, you’ll be carrying it at least part of the time, so padded, comfortable straps are a must. Some bags have backpack-style straps along with a regular shoulder strap and handgrip, allowing you to carry the bag in a variety of ways.
Some golf club bags offer a separate compartment for your putter, keeping it from banging against your other clubs.
Most golf club bags have some sort of clip or loop to hold your golf towel, but it’s nice to have even more handy spots to attach other items you want within easy reach.
Many golf club bags have a rain guard of some type to cover up your clubs in case of a sudden shower.
You’ll find basic black, gray, brown, and other neutral golf club bags, of course, but there are plenty of bright colors and patterns to choose from as well, so go for your favorite.
Golf club bags are available in a range of prices for every budget.
For under $100, you’ll get a basic golf club bag without a lot of frills or extras. These bags won’t have extensive dividers or pockets.
Between $100 and $200, you’ll find the biggest bang for your buck. These golf club bags are generally suited for the majority of players, except those who are very serious about the game. You’ll find plenty of dividers, pockets, and extras in this price range.
Above $200, you can expect top-of-the-line style and design. These are golf club bags for golfers who play very frequently or simply prefer to own the best.
Whether you spend a lot or a little on your golf club bag, basic care will keep it looking good for years.
Wipe any dirt, mud, or grass off your golf clubs before putting them away for the day. Make sure your clubs are dry before storing them. During the game, use your golf towel to wipe your club clean after your shot.
Store your woods with covers to keep the heads clean and protected.
If your golf club bag gets a stain or soiled spot, use a damp rag with a bit of liquid dish soap to remove the mark, then wipe with a clean, damp rag until all residue is gone.
Don’t store your golf club bag in a hot spot or in direct sun. This will fade the bag’s color. It’s best to store your bag and clubs in a protected, indoor location, rather than leaving the bag in the trunk of your car.
If your golf club bag gets wet, empty it out once you get back inside, and dry as much moisture as possible with a towel. Then stuff the pockets and inner compartments with paper towels or soft rags to absorb any remaining dampness.
A. While the function is the same, golf club bags designed for women are generally a little lighter than men’s bags and a little smaller. There are often more storage pockets in women’s bags, and you’ll generally find a wider range of colors and patterns, too.
A. While nostalgia might keep you tied to your old bag, you’ll find a lot of modern conveniences in newer golf club bags. Instead of heavy leather or canvas that stained and watermarked easily, today’s golf club bags are made of lightweight synthetics that repel moisture, dust, stains, and dirt. Instead of one or two openings for all your clubs, today’s bags sport multiple dividers to protect your clubs and make it easy to select the one you want. Modern bags have more pockets and accessories, too, as well as convenient features like rain guards, legs, lined pockets, and sleeker designs.
A. If you play infrequently, a simple carry bag is probably enough. If you hit the links on a regular basis, however, and generally walk the course, a stand bag is your best bet, especially if it has backpack-style straps.