Golf Canada Introduces new Membership Structure

Earlier this week Golf Canada announced a new membership structure that attempts to reflect the “new reality” of golf that is seeing less and less individuals join clubs, opting instead to play a variety of public and semi private clubs.

You can read the full announcement here:
http://golfcanada.ca/blogs/article/gordon-golf/new-membership-model-welcomes-everyone-to-be-part-of-golf-in-canada/

The role out of the new structure isn’t completely clear to me as it says the Silver membership will be in 2016, but says nothing of timing for Bronze, Gold memberships and facility fees.

The new structure in a nut shell:

  • 3 Membership categories
    • Bronze – Free
      • Discount tickets;
      • Rewards and prizes;
      • Score posting;
      • Ringer Scorecard at one course;
      • Basic statistics tracking,
      • Health information;
      • Dynamic course search;
      • Global Golf Post;
      • E-Golf News.
    • Silver – $24.95
      • Bronze, plus;
      • Better discounts
      • Better rewards and prizes
      • Additional Stats tracking
      • Golf Canada Magazine
      • Golf Club labels and access to Golf Canada Equipment Identification and Retrieval System;
      • Online access to a PGA of Canada professional to assist and direct you on how to get the most out of your game.
    • Gold ($49.95)
      • All the above, plus;
      • Best discounts;
      • Best rewards and prizes;
      • Access to sanctioned events;
      • Official handicap;
      • Equipment Guarantee;
      • Enhanced Game tracking;
      • Membership card;
      • Cart damage insurance.
  • 2 Options for Courses
    • Facility fee
      • Doesn’t cover cost of Golf Canada memberships for members;
    • Facility fee plus Golf Canada memberships for members

As a golfer, this may or may not impact me as I don’t know which option my club will choose. Right now my club is obligated, as a member course, to purchase a Golf Canada membership on my behalf. The value of this is about $25. If my club chooses to not purchase this on my behalf in the future, that’s $50 out of my pocket.

I suspect there will be a lot less people tracking their official handicap. For those playing regularly, but not in sanctioned events, they may opt for the cheaper option.

The plan could lead to a sharp increase in members, as the Bronze membership isn’t much more than a glorified e-club that many business offer to their customers.

How will club events work? I know at my club we currently require event participants to have an official handicap, which means members would need a Gold level membership, whether the club covers it or not. Will this changed membership structure lead to changes at the club level?

With the added options, I still see myself joining at a level that lets me track an official handicap, whether my club covers this or not.

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