21 Business Golf Etiquette Tips and Ideas in 2022

Business and golf go hand in hand. In fact, you can close your best business deal on the golf course. Besides that, playing a round of golf with friends or business colleagues is an enjoyable and relaxing experience. However, there is some basic business golf etiquette you should observe.

If you are knew to golfing, you might be wondering what I am talking about.

Yes, I mean you should learn, understand and observe the business golf etiquette. In most cases, they are not written, but as a good golfer, you should observe them.

When you decide to play golf, or be part of any sport, you should invest your time in learning the etiquette of the sport.

This will help you to understand the things you can do or not do when playing golf.

It is also good to learn how to engage or interact with fellow golfer while on the course. How you should treat each other on the course or on the hospitality section of a golf course.

These are nuances and informal rules of golfing that every golfer should adhere to when at the golf course.

In this article or resource, you will learn the business golf etiquette you should learn and observe.

So, let us dive into it now.

What is Business Golf Etiquette?

Business golf etiquette is a set of rule, formal or informal, that is set to ensure that the game of golf is safer and conducive for the various players.

The golf etiquette constitute of practices that are part of the golfing ecosystem.

It includes the things you should or should not do when playing golf, or when interacting with others within a golf course.

The idea is for you to observe the business golf etiquette.

Basic Business Golf Etiquette You Should Observe

In summary, here are the business golf etiquette ideas, tips and rules you should observe;

  1. Make the plans.
  2. Pay green fees.
  3. Keep things moving on the golf course.
  4. Focus on building a relationship and not deal.
  5. Be respectful to others.
  6. Do not drink and play.
  7. Control your emotions.
  8. Dress appropriately.
  9. Use the right golf gear.
  10. Be professional.
  11. Treat them for lunch or drinks.
  12. Do not use caddies.
  13. Be patient before business talk.
  14. Let other golfers through in the course.
  15. Exchange contacts.
  16. Have fun and enjoy.
  17. Ensure you follow the rules.
  18. Do not bet money.
  19. Shake hands.
  20. Do not use vulgar language.
  21. Keep time

I will go ahead and cover these in detail below.

21 Business Golf Etiquette Tips and Ideas

Playing golf demands that you observe some basic tenets of sport decorum. This is because you are not alone in the golf course.

As you undertake business golf, it is important to be on your best behavior. To put your best foot forward.

In this section, let us look into seventeen etiquette rules, tips and ideas you should follow or observe.

  1. Make the plans.

If you are the one who has invited your guests for a round of golf, you should make all the plans.

Ensure you plan your round of golf meticulously.

Know the start times, carry bottled water and ensure caddied are available when you start the game.

  1. Pay green fees.

As a gesture of welcome and goodwill, you can offer to pay the green fees for your guests.

When it comes to business golf, this is a simple but important element of etiquette.

You get a great deal of benefit from treating your business guests in a special way.

  1. Keep things moving on the golf course.

It is important to always remember that you are not alone on the golf course. There are other people ahead or behind you.

As such, you should keep things moving on the golf course.

Do not spend too much time talking and forget to play golf. also, if one of you in the group loses a ball, do not hold up others, let them by.

  1. Focus on building a relationship and not deal.

One of the big mistakes people make is to focus too much of closing the deal.

Instead, you should think long-term.

Focus on creating and building a long lasting relationship with that contact.

  1. Be respectful to others.

One of the basic principles of business golf etiquette is being respectful to others.

Show respect to all golfers and non-golfers. Be a kind person.

This is an important trait in business as you will meet people of all walks of life.

  1. Do not drink and play.

I enjoy whiskey or a glass of wine once in a while.

However, I should let you on a secret. Never drink before playing a round of business golf.

It is not a good idea.

You should play first, and then enjoy a drink after the game on the popular 19th hole.

In fact, I would suggest that you throw a drink or two to the people you were playing golf with.

  1. Control your emotions.

When playing golf, you go through various emotions depending on your game.

You can be tempted to react to a bad shot, not hitting the target or just a bad golf afternoon.

It is critical that you learn how to manage your emotions on the golf course.

You do not want your business colleagues see you seating the small stuff or using bad language out of frustration.

Ensure you manage and control emotions, regardless of how you are playing on the golf course.

  1. Dress appropriately.

A lot of people wonder why golf has a dressing code. I might not go deep into the golf dressing code in this article.

However, you should dress appropriately when playing a round of business golf. It is part of the business etiquette.

Proper dressing when playing golf applies to both men and women.

There are guidelines as how each should wear to the golf course.

  1. Use the right golf gear

To play golf, you need certain equipment and accessories. It is important to ensure that you have the right things.

Playing golf requires you to have golf clubs, golf shoes and bags or cart among other things.

It is good etiquette to have the right golf gear.

For example, you should wear golf shoes as per the requirement at the golf club or course.

Some courses might allow spiked golf shoes while others do not allow them.

  1. Be professional.

When it comes to business or playing golf for business, you should always remain professional.

You should know that you are being judged, whether you know it or not.

Engage and play golf while maintaining your professional poise.

  1. Treat them for lunch or drinks.

Where I come from, food and drinks are an important part of building relationships.

Is that the same with you?

This would best when you are the host. You should offer to treat your business guests for meals or drinks.

Depending on when you are meeting up, you could offer lunch, half-way snack or dinner in the evening.

These are just part of business golf etiquette, and will help you build long term friendships with colleagues.

  1. Do not use caddies.

I know this goes against the conventional wisdom.

Golf caddies are important and play a big role when it come to business golf.

However, some business conversations are very sensitive.

In this regard, you should not use golf caddies. You do not want third parties listening in on your discussions.

  1. Be patient before business talk.

When you invite someone for a round of business golf or for a business golf tournament, be patient before starting business conversation.

There is always a tendency to go straight into business as soon as you tee-off.

Avoid this mistake. Be patient. Take time to get to know the other person or others in your team.

It might take a few holes.

After that, you can introduce your business topic or agenda.

  1. Let other golfers through in the course.

While on the course, you might find that those behind you are closing in on you.

To avoid unnecessary delays, you should let them through.

It demonstrates you care and are mindful of others when on the course.

  1. Exchange contacts.

Networking is a big part of playing golf today. It is one of the reasons business people prefer to play golf.

To make this work, you should exchange contacts with the person or people you are playing golf with.

It allows you to have a way to reach other when you leave the golf club.

You could exchange email addresses, and telephone numbers among others.

  1. Have fun and enjoy.

Golf is supposed to be enjoyable and fun. This applies to business golf as well.

Playing golf should create a great experience.

As part of your business life, golf is one of the sports that can help you relax while enjoying outdoors.

It is a great way to have fun with colleagues and associates as well.

  1. Ensure you follow the rules.

Every sport if governed by a set of rule and guidelines. Golf has such rules which should be adhered to at all times.

As part of the business golf etiquette, it is important to ensure you play by the rules.

The rules and regulation also cover how to relate to each other at the golf club, what to wear and general code of conduct.

  1. Do not bet money.

While it is common for friends and family to bet during a game of golf, you should not do this with business associates.

This can go horribly wrong for you.

You can argue or disagree with business associates over the scores or the money.

This would ruin your business relationship. You might not be able to have a meaningful business interaction after such an ordeal.

If you were to ask me, you should never bet money when playing a round of golf for business.

  1. Shake hands.

In business, shaking hands is considered a respectable way to conduct things.

You should use this when you meet someone before the start of your game, and also after you finish.

  1. Do not use vulgar language.

The language you use when engaging in a round of golf for business is very critical.

You should not use vulgar or abusive language.

Ensure you communicate in a way that is professional and respectful.

Mind your language when on the course or during the after-golf entertainment and drinks.

  1. Keep time

It is important that you keep time when it comes to playing golf with other people.

When playing golf for business, keeping time is a sign of respect.

You will demonstrate that you have high regard for other, and also that you respect their time.

Do not keep your fellow golfers waiting and you should not waste their time.


As I conclude, I do hope that you now understand the basic business golf etiquette.

It is important that you observe the laid down practices, when playing golf or whenever you are at a golf course.

Most of the business golf etiquette practices are universal. However, if you visit a new golf course, it would be best to ask for guidance and advice.

You will be guided on the things you can or cannot do within the golf course.

As the world changes, the rules and regulations of golf courses are also changing to accommodate modern world.

Today, you will find that golf courses have adopted policies and practices that guide on how you can use your mobile phones.

Always remember that business golf etiquette exists to provide a respectful environment, create awareness and provide a safe golfing experience.