The Old Course, St Andrews

Playing golf in St Andrews, The Home of Golf, is one of the best golf experiences you can have. This is the place where the game was invented after all, way back in the 15th century.

There are 10 unique St Andrews golf courses for you to play either within or just on the outskirts of the town, including the world-famous Old Course. Breathe in the fresh sea air as you hone your golf skills on St Andrew’s famous links courses – some of the finest and most authentic links courses in the world.

Playing the Old Course at St Andrews

You might have seen the likes of Rory McIlroy, Zach Johnson and Jordan Spieth competing on this illustrious course at tournaments such as The Open Championship, but did you know that you can play the Old Course too?

Sunny Swilcan Bridge at The Old Course, St AndrewsThe Old Course, St Andrews

The Old Course at St Andrews may be one of the most important courses in golf history, but it is also a public course and remains open to all. It’s run by the St Andrews Links Trust, which takes care of seven courses in St Andrews.

Here’s everything you need to know about playing the Old Course:

Will I need a handicap?

Yes, you will - a maximum of 24 for men and 36 for women. You’ll need to present your handicap certificate to the starter on the day too.

How can I play the Old Course?

Golfers on The Old Course in St AndrewsThe Old Course, St Andrews

There are quite a few ways to book the Old Course.

If you’re playing by yourself you can check in at the Old Pavilion on the day and staff will try to match you with a two or three-ball group.

If you are playing in a group of two or more you can:

  • Enter the Old Course ballot (lottery). This is drawn 48 hours in advance of play (except Fridays, as the course is closed on Sundays, and before tournament days).
  • Book your holiday with an Authorised Provider who can offer you a golf package which will include a guaranteed Old Course tee time. Look for golf tour operators and local accommodation providers who have the official ‘Authorised Provider’ logo on their website.
  • Play in the winter. You’re more likely to secure a tee time from November to March when there is less demand. Winter packages from mid-October till mid-April include a round on the Old Course and two other St Andrews Links golf courses.
  • Apply for private advance tee times.

What’s the cost of playing?

Green fees for 2017 range from £88 (low season) to £175 (high season).

Is the Old Course open all year-round?

Swilcan BridgeThe Old Course during the 144th Open Championship, St Andrews

Yes, except Sundays and busy dates, when the course is closed for part or all of the day to allow for tournaments and other events.

How can I get the most out of my Old Course experience?

Before your round on the Old Course it’s a good idea to warm up on another links course so that you can get a feel for what you’re likely to face.

There are lots of other golf courses in and near St Andrews that will challenge and delight you – the Old Course is in good company!

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