Single play etiquette

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By Joshua B

  • 24 Replies
  1. Joshua B

    Joshua B

    Good afternoon fellow team titleist-ers and happy upcoming birthday 'Merica! Just wanted to get everyone's opinion on a topic near and dear to me...especially since as i post this I've fallen victim to it. What is your views on a single tee time. Shouldn't do it at all, or if ok with it should 3 and 4somes allow you to play through? I am blessed to sometimes have a weekday off, which my 4somes dont have the ability to play so I call up to see if it is ok to go as a single. I'll typically pair up with some great people and share stories...but as in the case now the group in front doesnt want me pairing with them and will not let me play through. I was always taught to let faster groups through or pair up...not let the poor single sit in his cart for 15 mins after every shot. Let me know what you all think.

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  2. Tyler H

    Tyler H
    Appleton, WI

    Per the USGA and Rules and Decisions:
    "Priority on the Course
    Unless otherwise determined by the Committee, priority on the course is determined by a group's pace of play. Any group playing a whole round is entitled to pass a group playing a shorter round. The term "group" includes a single player."

    Unfortunately many still are under the impression that a single has no standing on the golf course. It is frustrating, but when this happens to me I take the time to play 2 balls (as long as I am not holding up the group behind me) or will take the opportunity to hit a few extra chips or putts after finishing a hole.

  3. Jerry M

    Jerry M
    Dallas, TX

    I certainly believe in letting faster groups play thru regardless of the number of people. I usually walk and if a single in a cart catches up to me, I give them the option of playing thru or joining me. What upsets is when a single in a cart is driving all over the course looking for an open slot.
  4. David T

    David T
    Grosse Pointe Farms, MI

    I play as a single all the time and since we can’t post scores for those rounds anymore I just skip ahead. I’ll give the group ahead of me a hole or two to let me play through and then I just pass em by.
  5. John B

    John B
    Kenmore, NY

    The only rule I break - I still post when I play alone because I don't cheat and putt everything out which often doesn't happen playing in a group. Plus the GHIN system tells me how many rounds I play each season and what my stroke average was.
  6. I have a membership at a local course, and I try and go out early when I'm going to be be playing alone, my goal is to be out before the morning tee times get booked (usually I'm good if before 8). Most of the time when I do come up one groups of 3 and 4 they let me play through, if they don't I will either just start practicing, and hit 3-4 balls into every green from different distances and with different clubs, if I am in a hurry I have, on occasion, skipped the hole they are on and just passed them.
  7. As a walker and sometimes single enjoying a midweek afternoon round, if I come up upon a group who won't allow me to play through or if I don't even want to bother them and their flow, I'll jump ahead and play a few holes, and later circle back to cover the holes I skipped. I might be in violation of etiquette but the way I see it, if I'm not holding anyone else up and they aren't holding me up, aren't we all a little better off?

    Enjoy the ride,
  8. Rooster

    West Wareham, MA

    Seems like every round my golf partner and I are caught up by a single in a cart. The 2 of us walk. My partner is 64 and I am 55 and had my right hip replaced 5 months ago. We usually play 18 in under 3 1/2 hours. If we see that the single appears to be thoughtful of us and is not hitting up on us. We will find a way to let them pass. We always offer to let them join us. Most of the time they are out there playing what I call speed golf. They don't really care about disrupting others out there. When I am a single I stay behind the group in front. I stay busy walking a little slower along the edges finding balls. When asked to hit through I hurry by. If asked to join I always do. This way I meet new people and enjoy the company.
  9. Tom B

    Tom B
    Northborough, MA

    Yes it used to say that a single has no standing. We'll always let a single, a twosome or any group that is playing faster always go through.........As long there is a place to go. If there's a foursome in front of us, and then in front of them, and there's no place to go, then sorry..... stop and smell the roses. If each group tried to step aside and let a single go through it would delay the entire course. I also think that if you're a twosome, threesome and have room for another one or two that are playing along, then invite them to join you. This is golf folks, where you're supposed to meet others and share your passion for the game. It doesn't mean you have to move in with them, but share the experience, and at least the round, please. Put yourself in their place, and maybe they're trying to meet folks to share a foursome with.
  10. Elson C

    Elson C

    Personally, I dont mind single player tee times
    I do it especially when my game is a little down and I need to take some time to work on some things, first light tee times are my favorites since a lot of people don't want to be on the course at 5:30, 6:00 am.
    When playing on a 2 some or "foursome", a word that I have come to understand it can be misleading when you are talking about golf on a non-golf environment, but that is a story for another day.
    I always convey with my playing partners and wave the faster player or group thru.
    It is just good manners in my opinion.
  11. Joshua,

    As a player that usually is a single I like the idea that a single can get a tee time. If the course is a busy one, I don't have a problem with them putting me with a 2 some or three some to keep the flow going. If I go out as a single I'm usually early in the morning when things are not so full so I don't find too many groups in front of me. If I do catch up to a group that's slower, I will never hit into them but I will keep pressure on them by sitting in the fairway making sure that they see me. Most of the time after a hole or two they will wave me through and I will do so briskly. If they don't wave me up, I will just skip a hole and get in front of them. I am not thrilled with the idea that a group won't wave me through just because there may be more groups in front of them. My feeling is that they should let me by and let me worry about getting the next group to do the same. To me it is very frustrating to be sitting in the fairway or on the tee and watch the group in front take forever to play a hole.
    Fairways and greens to all.

    Mark F
  12. If I am playing as a single then I will hit some practice chips after finishing a hole. If I am not holding up anyone then I will chip onto the green, if folks are in back of me then I sometimes chip onto the tee from rough around the area.
  13. No'l

    Palmdale, CA

    Yes, definitely let the faster group and even a single go by- as it should be. Yes, I did think that a single had no place for the longest time, but only as a guide as listed as an etiquette, and I don't remember when that changed.

    Also, if there aren't anywhere to go, we may or may not invite the single to join our group. Most the times, we've got something going in a complete group of four. But otherwise if we have the room, why not.
  14. NoleInSC

    Columbia, SC

    Most groups will allow me to play through as a single. Otherwise I just wait. I’ll drop another ball and play it or practice putting as long as I am not holding up anybody behind me.
  15. Frank P

    Frank P
    Port St. Lucie, FL

    I go as a single Quite a bit here in FL during the summer as the course is kind of empty until the snowbirds return in the late Fall. Most will let you thru as long as there are not other groups in front of them. I'll try to hang back a little an let the hole open up in front of me unless I get pushed from behind. Then you have to hit the gas and stay bumper to bumper.
  16. I frequently play as a single; even on the weekends. I walk with a push cart so I tend to play at a pace that keeps me well in front of the group behind without breathing down the group in front. If I see that I am catching them, I change my pace to make sure they don't feel rushed, and do my best to make any pass at a tee box. 99% of the time, I can play a fairly stress free, enjoyable round.

    That said, I recently saw a group of 7, yes 7, going down the 6th fairway as I was playing the 4th (my 13th). As I approached the 7th tee box, the group was starting the 8th hole. I played the entire 7th and they were just pulling away from the tee box. I decided to call the clubhouse (I am a member of a private club) and was told they would send someone out to investigate. I stood and watched as all 7 searched for one guys ball in the water before the pro pulled up to talk to them. He let them continue as a 7-some and then told me there was nothing he could do and that they promised to let me play through. I waited for 10 minutes on the 9th tee as they searched for balls again. As I finished the 9th, the group came out of the restaurant and told me I could play through. I decided to just say thanks and that my round was done; but I really wanted to rant about playing ready golf and about general course courtesy.
  17. Quintin H

    Quintin H
    Morehead, KY

    A single in a cart tends to slow down the entire course, I let them play thru, then the next lets them play thru.....I'm waiting twice

    I will not let anyone play thru unless there is 2 tees open in front of me........if there's no place for them to go then there is no use in them playing thru.

    I am usually a single walking and unless I'm the first on the course I'm waiting, if I'm waiting anyone coming up behind me will be waiting.

    And even if I'm first on the course there will be somebody jump out on 10 while I'm on 9 and I'm waiting the entire back side.........but since the last time, that is changing
  18. Darryl M

    Darryl M
    Wichita, KS

    During the week a single can play at any time on my hometown courses, on weekends the preferred tee times have to be at least a 3some or 4some on most courses. After 12 noon they allow singles again. As for pace of play a faster group/player has the right to play through, but the group in front of them might not always allow it because of lack of knowledge of such a thing or they think they are not slowing anyone down. And last but not least they are rude......

    Usually I find it doesn't matter too much on weekends everyone usually is waiting, but the 5.5 hour rounds bother me the most. Our courses over book their tee times which makes it a waiting game every weekend unless you go out later in the day.

    I play single walking a lot during the week and meet several wonderful people who will ask to play along with me or invite me to join them. Sometimes I do but other times I am there working on certain things so I go ahead and stay a single.

    On weekends I play with friends so we can play games within the round I walk then too because like I said we usually have to wait.
  19. I think they should let a single play through, anytime I can help maintain pace of play for any size group by letting them pass or passing them I feel it helps everyone enjoy there time on course better. Also just common courtesy!
  20. I think they should let a single play through, anytime I can help maintain pace of play for any size group by letting them pass or passing them I feel it helps everyone enjoy there time on course better. Also just common courtesy!
  21. Chuck Z

    Chuck Z
    Mt Pleasant, SC

    Just happened to see this post and found it to be interesting. A lot of public courses will not send out singles depending on the time of day. They may allow it if they are not busy. If you try to book at single tee time, they will usually put you with someone. Pace of play is the determining factor here. Most foursomes will allow a single to go thru if there is an opening in front of them. Some singles seem to insist on doing their own thing and do not want to join up with other groups, especially if the starter wants to put them with a husband and wife or with women. I have worked as a starter and ranger at a public course and regardless of how busy the course is, they insist of playing by themselves. They even ask to go off the back side first. So if all that come up to the starters shed/cart are willing to follow protocol, then they can have an enjoyable day and as you say meet some folks and make some new friends. Public courses in the afternoon are going to be busy because of the rates being cheaper. Pace of play, keeping the groups moving along in four hours or less?
  22. Brian Brat

    Brian Brat
    Ashland, MA

    I always let singles play through.

    When I am a single hopefully the group in front of me lets me through, but after a few holes I know if they are or not? If not like some had said I'll play another ball at time to slow my pace down as long as I am not holding anyone up behind me.
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