golfers in the fields

How to Plan a Golf Tournament Event – Tips & Checklist

In June 2022, the PGA Tour’s Canadian Open had its largest US television audience in 22 years. The golf tournament’s final round broadcast on CBS averaged a whopping 2.78 million viewers. It’s safe to say that golf is more popular than ever. If you’re looking for an engaging event to plan, a golf tournament event may be the right choice.

However, knowing how to plan a successful golf tournament is vital to ensure that your event is successful and goes off without a hitch. Consider this your guide if you don’t know where to start in your golf tournament planning.

You don’t need an event planner! In this article, you’ll learn the steps to planning a successful golf tournament. As a bonus, you’ll find an easy checklist to consult and keep you on track during the process.

Let’s jump right in!

How to Plan a Golf Tournament Event

Trying to plan one may seem daunting if you aren’t already familiar with what a golf tournament event entails. However, once you know the specifics of such an event, you’ll be able to properly plan a successful golf event.

To help you out, here are the steps to follow for golf tournament planning.

1. Ensure You Understand Golf

The first thing you should do when learning how to plan a golf tournament before you even start the actual planning process is to ensure that you understand the game of golf.

This is important for a few reasons, the most obvious of which is that you can’t plan an event for a sport you know nothing about. That said, ensuring you understand the game of golf also gives you better insights into who your audience will be, what they’re interested in, and what other activities you should be planning throughout the tournament.

If you genuinely don’t have a good understanding of golf, do some research to at least learn the gist of the game. You can also ask anyone you may know in your network who plays golf for their insights or help planning the tournament.

2. Write Down All the Details

The second thing you should do in your golf tournament event planning is to get every detail about the event down on paper.

You can consider this a brainstorming session where you put down all your ideas for the tournament. Start by writing down the goal of your golf tournament (i.e., raise money, work outing, promotion, etc.) and frame your other ideas around this goal.

Once you have your potential ideas down, weed out the ones you don’t think are good or may not be as feasible.

From there, organize the ideas you’re left with to start shaping your golf tournament event.

golf stick and ball

3. Create a Budget and Stick to It

This next step is probably the most essential element of learning how to plan a golf tournament event: setting a realistic budget.

You should start your budgeting by figuring out the average cost per golfer. Make sure to include the following when calculating this cost:

  • Food and drinks
  • Water
  • Golf course fees
  • Marketing material

To get your budget, multiply the cost per golfer by the anticipated number of participants.

If you expect your golf tournament event to bring in revenue, you should also account for that expected revenue when forming your budget.

You can also look for a sponsor or do a golf tournament fundraiser, like selling raffle tickets, for your golf event, so you have more money to work with. If you are planning a charity event, you can ask donors to make a donation or provide featured products for a silent auction or as tee prizes. You can ask volunteers to help you run a successful charity golf tournament.

4. Choose the Tournament Format

The format of your golf tournament depends on a few factors, including what kind of event it is and whether you’ll have golf pros or non-golfers participating.

If you plan on having many non-golfers participating in your golf outing event, you most likely want to consider the Scramble format.

How Scramble works is that teams of four all hit from the same spot and get to choose which of the four shots is best to hit from next. From there, all the golfers pick up their balls and hit from that same spot. This is one of the most popular golf tournament format options and is fun for every participant.

If you have more advanced players at your tournament, you might choose a more competitive format, such as Best Ball, or even a medal-style tournament where everyone keeps track of their own score. This is why it’s essential to get to know your audience in step 1!

5. Choose Your Location

Along with the budget, the location of your golf tournament event is one of the most important elements to plan.

You want to keep in mind a few things when trying to determine the best location for your tournament, including:

  • The number of golfers you plan on having participate
  • Where most of your attendees will be commuting from
  • The activities you plan after

Some golf courses are located far from the city and can be challenging to get to for some guests, so it’s essential to have a good idea of who will be attending your event before booking your golf course.

If your tournament is followed by a banquet, gala, or other type of event, you’ll want to choose a venue that will accommodate this or choose a separate venue that’s comfortable for your guests.

view of golf course

6. Promote the Tournament

Once all the event planning is done, all that’s left to do is to promote your event.

You have several options when it comes to promotion, depending on who your audience is. You should use online advertising and social media to reach a broad audience. Community flyers may also be valuable if you’re planning a more local event.

Be sure to keep your advertising costs in mind when creating your budget.

Wrap-Up: Golf Tournament Event Checklist

To recap, here’s your golf tournament event checklist:

  1. Learn how to play golf
  2. Write down the details and brainstorm
  3. Create a budget
  4. Choose the format
  5. Pick your location
  6. Promote your event

For outdoor tournaments, ensuring that all of your guests have enough water is a must for a successful event. Let Quench Buggy take care of hydration so you can spend more time on other details of your tournament. Contact us today to discuss rentals.