If you are a golfer and love to travel, then you should subscribe to Craig Better’s Golf Vacation Insider. It is always interesting and always packed with money saving ideas, places to play, and in this case, how to save money when you are flying Find out the secrets to flying First Class for less then Coach!
Secrets to Flying First Class For Less Than Coach
By Craig Better
If you truly enjoy flying in the cattle car coach, stop reading right now.Today’s tip is for people who want to upgrade to first class for less (or only a fraction more) than what it costs to fly coach.Yes, you need to use clever, insider “tricks,” “loopholes,” and the right rewards program (see below).And everybody asks me: How do you keep up with it all?
The answer is, I don’t.
I simply rely on someone who does.
My Secret? I know Matthew Bennett.
Matthew is the publisher of First Class Flyer, a newsletter that exposes and exploits these loopholes in airfares and frequent flyer programs to get readers into the first class cabin — either for free or at massive discounts.
You may know Matthew, too, but probably as, “Mr. Upgrade” from his many TV and newspaper interviews.
I first met him several years ago and have been subscribing to his monthly newsletter ever since (it’s now in its 18th year of publication).The Billy Beane of Air Travel…Matthew actually began his professional career as a pitcher in the Kansas City Royals farm system.After realizing the big leagues weren’t in his future, he got into coaching — not baseball, but travel, which he did a ton of — and became an expert on — while playing.
Little did Matthew know one day he would become, “the Billy Beane of Air Travel.”
Specifically, Matthew helps people like you and me win the air travel game by finding airfare anomalies and loopholes in frequent flyer, hotel, and credit card programs to get us deeply discounted or free upgrades to first and business class.
For example, in his current, March 2015 issue, he reveals…
The Travel Credit Card You *Should* be Using
Have you ever wondered if your credit card is working as hard (or as smart) for you as it should be toward travel rewards?
I don’t even want to know how many hours it took Matthew to put this together but…
His March issue includes a total, deep-dive analysis of major credit card travel programs…and the one you should be using based on your spending and travel habits.
He even includes a handy, “Play Your Cards Right” calculator so you can plug in your numbers and instantly see the results!
The $11 First-Class Upgrade Trick
Also in the March 2015 issue, he reveals how you can fly first class on a popular route for just $11 more than flying coach.
He includes dozens of similar examples of this, too, but I’m not allowed to share them here.
However, I can tell you how to get a free copy of First Class Flyer’s March issue where you’ll learn about everything (see below).
One of the Greatest Free Trials I’ve Ever SeenYou’ve probably been offered your share of free trials to newsletters and other services — I certainly have.So, I’m pretty confident in saying that First Class Flyer’s free trial program is among the most valuable I’ve ever encountered.Here’s the deal:
The free trial to First Class Flyer it includes the current issue (a nice start)…
…12 back issues (getting better)…
…and 11 essential reports aimed at helping turn you into a travel-savings savant.
(Now we’re talkin’!)
Among the titles and topics covered in these reports are:
• How to Fly Business Class for Less than Coach
• The Upgrade Expert’s 9 Principles
• How to Use Miles Wisely, not Wastefully
• Ultimate Credit Card Tricks
• The Premium Traveler’s Best Friend (One-Way Awards)
• 3 Key Business-to-First Class Upgrade Strategies
• How to Go from Coast-to-Coast Chump to True Transconnoiseur
Again, you’ll get these reports free just by trying First Class Flyer, and I know they contain secrets that could get you into a first class seat on your very next flight.
And just in case that isn’t enough to entice you to give First Class Flyer a try, here are some other things you’ll learn in the March 2015 issue alone…
• How to use points from one source on as many as 44 different airlines
• Where to find some astoundingly low Business Class fares to Europe
• How to save up to 87% on First Class travel to Tokyo
• New upgrade opportunities for up to four passengers
• Why Aer Lingus may be your best option for flying to Europe
The only thing I don’t know is how long Matthew is going to keep this free trial offer going (not to mention the 11 reports that go with it).
So, if you want to learn today’s secret and other, money-saving tips on getting out of the cattle car, I encourage you to try First Class Flyer for free now.
p.s. Matthew is a stand-up guy. His trial is truly free — there is no purchase obligation and he doesn’t pressure you to subscribe. When you offer advice this good, you don’t have to.
p.p.s. The other hidden benefit of getting into the first class cabin is avoiding extra fees, especially when you’re traveling with additional luggage like golf clubs.
Source : Craig Better GolfVacationInsider.com
Pictures : Tim RT
To follow up on a theme, in my last post I gave you the Top 10 courses in the US to put on your bucket list. Here is a list of TPC courses that are difficult to get on under normal conditions, but Tim Gavrich of Golf Vacation Insider tells you how to accomplish this pleasant task!
One of our main passions is to find our readers ways to get access to private clubs they might otherwise miss out on playing.
(In this case, those clubs include four that currently host PGA Tour events.)
That’s why what I’m about to show you is one of the cleverest such items we’ve ever uncovered.
I call it “clever” because it relates to something you almost definitely already have:
A credit card.
That’s right – in this age of credit card companies racing to offer current and potential customers the best benefits, we’ve found what has to be the best one for traveling golfers.
It’s the World MasterCard™, and it gives you access to the entire slate of private clubs in the TPC network.
The rest of us already are able to play the public TPC golf courses, highlighted by the likes of TPC Sawgrass, TPC Scottsdale and TPC Louisiana, which host Tour events in their own right.
But the majority of TPC facilities are private, and normally only open to full members there or at another private course in the network…
…and World and World Elite MasterCard™ holders.
The World and World Elite are popular among MasterCard’s lineup, and so they are available in a number of fee/interest configurations – no annual fee and a higher interest rate, or a lower interest rate that comes with an annual fee.
TPC River Highlands
Whatever the configuration, though, the card’s Private Club Access feature allows cardholders to play each private TPC course once per calendar year and unlocks a number of private TPC golf perks. These include convenient tee time booking capabilities and the sort of treatment generally only reserved for full members: a dedicated locker for each visit, a “welcome gift” (e.g. a name-etched bag tag) and bar and dining privileges at each course, as well as the ability to book well in advance of play.
If you are interested in confirming your eligibility or want to check on rates and availability, call the MasterCard concierge at 888-963-7017. Qualifying cardholders may play each participating course once a year and can bring up to three guests (all charges must go on the approved card). In most instances, thePrivate Club Access rate is markedly less than the standard green fee.
In addition,Private Club Access may provide savings when playing a public TPC course or when staying at a resort with a tie-in to a TPC club. At Harding Park, which will host the 2015 Match Play Championship, the 2020 PGA Championship, and the 2025 President’s Cup, the rate for elite MasterCard holders is $129 Monday through Thursday and $146 on weekends, compared to the $155 weekday and $175 weekend public green fee.
Guests of the JW Marriott San Antonio Hill Country Resort TPC can play either the Dye or Norman courses at the on-site TPC San Antonio on an à la carte basis for $199 or $259 depending on the season, whereas the MasterCard rates top out at $156 during peak months and drop to $119 in shoulder season-and you don’t even need to stay at the resort.
During peak season at The Greenbrier, the MasterCard rate for TPC Old White (where Angel Cabrera won the 2014 Greenbrier Classic) is $257, whereas resort guests and public players pay $325 and $375, respectively. If you want to try the Old White in shoulder season, MasterCard can set you up for as little as $87 a round, whereas registered guests and the general public are on the hook for $195 and $245, respectively. Just remember that to secure these special rates you must call the program concierge. Note also that booking windows typically range from 14 to 30 days.
Have you played any of the private courses of the TPC Network? The public-accessible ones? Let us know your opinions of any and all of them in the comments below!
Here are the top 10 courses for that elusive bucket list. You will need to know a member to get on some of these, but think of the fun you’ll have once you manage to do that!I have been fortunate to have played 6 of the top 10. I still have Merion, Riviera, Beth Page Black and Pine Valley to go.Here are the Top 10 compiled by “The Weekly Top 10”
10: Merion Golf Club – Haverford Township, Pennsylvania
9: National Golf Links of America – Southampton, New York8: Riviera Country Club – Los Angeles, CA7: Harbour Town Golf Links – Beaufort, South Carolina6: Shinnecock Hills Golf Club – Southampton5: Pebble Beach Golf Links – Pebble Beach, CA4: Cypress Point Club – Pebble Beach, CA3: Augusta National Golf Club – Augusta, GA2: Bethpage State Park Golf Course – Long Island, New York1: Pine Valley Golf Club – Clementon, NJNow watch this video and plan how you are going to get on some of these great courses!
View our top 10 best golf courses of all time in the United States. Featuring from a classic golf course to exotic golf course, you will find the most beautiful golf course that suit you. Check out how we ranked the popular golf courses like Pebble Beach Golf Club, attractive Pine Valley Golf Club, gorgeous Cypress Point Club, Bethpage State Park Golf Course, and more of the best golf courses in US.
Your homework is done for you!Planning a golf trip requires that you check out an airline’s baggage fees and their record of mishandled or damaged baggage. It certainly depresses your upbeat vacation mood when your clubs arrive in less than perfect condition. Apparantly, the most common culprit in damaging sports equipment of all kinds are Delta, United and US Airways. But those carriers do serve a much higher number of customers for golf travel than the ones listed in this story.
Apparently Delta means this literally!
Thanks to the Active Times report for Fox News, which investigated baggage fees, reports from passengers of busted gear and also destination offerings. 5 Airlines were selected as “best” for bringing in your sports gear safely! Two, however, had a limited destination list.Because the Fox News article is from 2013, I’ve included a March, 2015 story from canoe.ca Travel, which names the airlines that most satisfy US travelers. I also found a poll on this subject at hookedongolfblog.comThe clear winner? SouthWest Airlines!
The Clear Winner for booking your next golf destination is SouthWest Airlines!
I played Doonbeg a few years ago when I took a group to Ireland for a golfing vacation. My comments were : “Greg Norman ruined a great piece of property” and “This is not a course I wish to play again.” I might change my mind about playing this course again since Donald Trump purchased Doonbeg Golf club recently and will rename it Trump International Golf Links.But the Donald did have his trials and tribulations along the way, and thanks to an endangered species of Narrow Mouthed Whorl Snails, changed the design, I think for the better.Thomas Breathnach of Maxim Man, files this report on a course I am looking forward to playing in the future.
The 14th hole at Trump International Golf Links, formerly Doonbeg GC.
When one of Ireland’s top luxury golf resorts rolled off the green and into the red earlier this year, Donald Trump went and found a bargain. For $11 million (bankrolled by a further $36 million in investment), the most thoroughly gilded name in real estate bought himself one of the world’s most iconic golf courses. It was uncertain news for duffers—the hairpiece plays off four, but has a Floridian approach to course design—but there was a catch. The Donald didn’t just buy 18 premier holes and a shining estate, he purchased the last remaining redoubt of Vertigo Augustior.
Otherwise known as the Narrow-Mouthed Whorl Snail (well, it’s not really known at all), Augustior is a protected species in Ireland. Landing in the new-found homeland of the endangered creatures (all 60 million of them) looked like it a bad bounce for Trump. He had already been pouring millions of euros to reverse the course damage suffered from a ferocious cyclone last winter, and suddenly he looked like he was going to have to take a mulligan.
Trump’s development work was halted by Irish authorities; truckloads of rock armor hauled in to protect the site from coastal erosion were stalled and plans to expand the course into Augustior’s hallowed habitat were thwarted. While the hot money might have been on an environmental collision course, Trump reached an agreement to save the mollusk. All he had to was change his plans for the course. In so doing, he may have ultimately changed the history of Irish golf.
Rather than pursuing a heftier reroute, Trump drafted acclaimed course architect Martin Hawtree to sensitively airbrush the terrain. The result is a championship (originally mastered by Greg Norman) commands epic panoramic views over the ocean, which mercilessly batters its greens. “It’s wild and woolly. A classic links course with a lot of soul—all created by the elements,” explains Brian Shaw the Head Golf Pro presiding over the par 72. “You really have to play with the land here and use it to your advantage. That means lots of ‘bump and run’ and a complete arsenal of shots to keep the ball down.”
It’s an awesomely raw affair. But the lack of tree shelter and man-made water features doesn’t mean the course comes without its own natural hazards. Due to the undulating nature of the terrain, which dips and dives between swallowing sand bunkers and plunging cliff faces, self-drive golf buggies have been 86ed at the resort, all for the greater good, according to Shaw. “We’ve had a couple of incidents here…so we prefer folks not to drive out there alone.” Perhaps when on a Trump course, it’s only fitting that guests are caddy-chauffeured.
Back toward the 19th, Trump’s luxury home range itself is just as arresting. A gear-shifting driveway sweeps along fairways and thatched cottages before eventually weaving its windswept path toward the estate’s baronial manor, classically pimped with a fleet of private Mercs. Built in 2002 to retro-capture the grandeur of a historic Irish homestead, the hotel’s resulting vibe falls somewhere between the pomp of Downton Abbey and the plush five-star cushiness of a Nantucket country club. That’s not to say there’s a shortage of high-end Irish trademarks; wilderness massages in the hotel spa, sea-kayaking trips to the local village, reserve Irish whiskeys in the clubhouse bar. But most people tarry to this edge of Europe, for one reason and one reason alone: swinging and sinking.
If you are a passionate walking golfer, you may like to join The Walking Golfers Society. This group believes that walking is essential to the enjoyment of golf and that the game was intended to be played this way.
Many courses require you take a golf cart, rather than walk. The main reason offered is the revenues generated by 2 people paying golf cart fees, in addition to green fees.
However, there are quite a few courses stretching from Oregon to New Jersey where you are welcome to carry your bag or use an electronic push cart. Click on Course Reviews for info on these courses.
The benefits to walking include the obvious one, that it provides more physical exercise, but it also is better for the golf course and the surrounding environment. A cart, especially in wet weather, has much more impact on the grass. And cart paths are a bit of a blight on the lovely natural environment.
Read more to learn why this passionate society feels that golf courses have a big opportunity before them to benefit from walking-only golf.
As mentioned on The Walking Golfer homepage, there are many benefits of walking when you golf.
Four primary benefits are the following:Physical – You burn almost twice as many calories as you would riding in a cart
Scoring – You shoot better scores than those who are riding in a cart
Social – You have a much better opportunity to interact with all of your playing partners
Experience – You can fully enjoy the natural beauty of the course from tee to green
Please click on each benefit to find more information.
The benefits of walking are not limited to the golfer, they extend to the golf course and the surrounding environment.
The Par 4 16th at Bandon Dunes – Photo by Kyle Henderson
A walking golfer has much less impact on the turf than a golf cart, which is evident any time you play in the rain because you can see where carts have ripped up swaths of grass that will take months to mend.
If a golf course or club is walking only, then there is the added benefit of saving expenses on building and maintaining cart paths, while also significantly improving the aesthetics of the course.
Cart paths are little more than a long scar on the landscape that disrupt natural sightlines, create artificial man made obstacles and negatively influence an architects ability to freely route the course. A cart path free course is a blank canvas, while the necessity to accomodate cart paths is restrictive to the architect as an artist.
Many contend that the costs of building and maintaining cart paths are outweighed by the revenue that is generated from cart rentals.
I think this is bogus, and I think that golf courses have a huge opportunity in front of them to benefit from a movement towards walking only golf.
Carts bring in revenue, but the turf, cart path and golf cart maintenance costs erode that revenue to a point where it would be advantageous for courses to rent motorized push carts.
Electronic push carts are cheaper to purchase and maintain than motorized carts which is great for the golf course, while also providing the walking golfer with a means of walking eighteen without having to carry his or her bag.
Being a walking golfer is much better for the golfer, the golf course, the bottom line and the environment.
Charitable donations from tournaments on the PGA Tour, Champions Tour, and Web.com Tour, were a record $140.5 million for 2014. The total, donated from the first-ever charitable tournament in 1938 at the Palm Beach Invitational, is now $2.14 billion.
What a game! The sponsors, the players, the volunteers, the PGA tournament staff and you, the ticket buyers, make all of this possible. The beneficiaries include hospitals, youth development organizations, food banks, and grow-the-game programs.
Read why golf is still the coolest sport, provided by Media Team, PGA Tour.com to see how golf does it differently from other professional sports organizations.
The Principal Charity Classic leads the way in charitable donations on the Champions Tour.
The PGA TOUR announced today that charitable donations in 2014 were a record $140.5 million. This total includes donations made by tournaments on the PGA TOUR, Champions Tour, Web.com Tour, PGA TOUR Canada, PGA TOUR China and PGA TOUR Latinoamérica.
With the announcement, the all-time total donated to charity is $2.14 billion since the first-ever charitable contribution of $10,000 at the 1938 Palm Beach Invitational. Of that total, more than $1 billion has come since the TOUR surpassed the $1-billion plateau in 2005. The $2-billion mark was passed in January of last season.
“This record charitable output is a testament to the hard work and tireless efforts of our tournaments, sponsors, players and, especially, our volunteers,” said PGA TOUR Commissioner Tim Finchem, who made the announcement during this week’s World Golf Championships-Cadillac Championship. “This achievement is remarkable and reflects the tremendous impact that is being felt in communities all over the world.”
Earlier this year, it was announced that the Waste Management Phoenix Open had surpassed $100 million in charitable donations in its history, becoming the third PGA TOUR event to have generated that much for charity, joining the AT&T Byron Nelson Championship and the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am. Expected to join that illustrious grouping in three weeks is the Valero Texas Open, which has donated more than $95 million to charity in its history, including more than $90.5 million since Valero became title sponsor of the event in 2002.
In 2014, five PGA TOUR events generated more than $7 million for charity, including three – Valero Texas Open, AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am and Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial – that donated more than $9 million. There were six Champions Tour events that donated more than $1 million to charity, including the Shaw Charity Classic which was over $2 million. The Albertsons Boise Open presented by Kraft led the Web.com Tour with donations of more than $1.45 million.
The World Golf Championships, a series of four international championships, have surpassed a significant milestone with the series generating more than $50 million for charitable causes since their debut in 1999.
Unlike other professional sports organizations, the PGA TOUR relies on more than 100,000 volunteers annually to run its tournaments, and the vast majority of its tournaments are structured as non-profit organizations designed to donate 100 percent of net proceeds to charity. Community beneficiaries include a wide variety of organizations including hospitals, youth development organizations, growth-of-the-game programs and food banks.
This is the 5th in my series “Which Golf Courses to Pair with your wine.” We have travelled to Napa & Sonoma, then the Paarl & Stellenbosch areas of South Africa. Part 3 covered Argentina, Part 4 was the Okanagan region of Canada. Today we cover the Niagara Falls, Canada, region in my “Golf Courses to Pair with your Wine” brought to you by Niagara Golf and Wine. Be sure to also check out their specialty in this region – Ice Wine
Niagara Falls at night. The region also has great golf and wine to enjoy as well.
Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada awaits you this year! Niagara Falls Tours is pleased to offer you a fine selection of Niagara Falls tour packages for both individuals and groups of 20 persons or more to some of the finest Niagara Falls attractions, Niagara Falls entertainment and Niagara Falls accommodations.
Niagara Falls is one of the most well known locations in the world and offers you, the visitor, breathtaking vistas, world class accommodations, and attractions, both man-made and natural to rival anywhere! If you haven’t visited Niagara Falls in years, now is the time to come home and be pleasantly surprised. If you have never visited Niagara Falls, be prepared to be astonished.
Click on the link below to peruse great golf and wine packages in the Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada region.
Source : Niagara Falls Golf and Wine
Pictures : Anupam_tsTony
1. Start with reputation. Ask other golfers to recommend an academy, or find schools online that are rated highly by the golf industry and feature positive customer reviews. Places like tripadvisor.com is a good place to start!
2. Check out the teachersat each facility. Are they PGA, LPGA, or graduates of an accredited golf career program? Do they have a minimum of 5 full years of teaching experience with all skill levels? Does the Director of Instruction have “Top Teacher” status with GOLF Magazine and Golf Digest?
PGA Teaching Professional David Olberding helping a student.
3. How’s the Teaching Facility?Is there a private learning area on the practice range for golf school students only? Do students have a putting green, bunker and chipping area? Classrooms with video analysis access, restrooms, and a chance to enjoy a little air conditioning, when needed, also indicate a quality facility.
4. Class size is very important. Each class should contain no more than 4 students to ensure plenty of personal attention. Ideally, one Instructor only, should lead the class through all aspects of the game. This promotes continuity and rapport that is disrupted when a golfer meets a new teacher for each part of the game.
A class size of no more than 4 helps you get plenty of individual attention!
5. Teaching Philosophy. Ask if a specific method of instruction is taught that requires the golfer to completely reconstruct his/her swing. Or, do they assess each golfer’s unique capabilities and then work on building on the strength of the existing swing through sound fundamentals?
6. What technology does the academy use?Computerized video analysis with split-screen imaging for swing comparisons is a must for the student to see and understand the improvement process. Check if clubfitting is available – many golfers are still playing with clubs that don’t fit them, and good teachers will provide help with that.
7. Last, but definitely not least, is affordability. Check rates for 3-day programs for the Top 25 Golf Schools in America online. The majority charge $1200 and upwards, but a few feature rates of only half that cost. Ask if KIDS LEARN FREE when accompanied by a paying adult. Top-notch instruction should be within the reach of every golfer, and we will grow the game this way.
Click below to see a list of America’s Top 25 Golf Schools.
Pictures : Mel Sole. Jim Maggio
Golf will be played at the Olympics in Brazil in 2016, for the first time since the 1904 Olympics.
60 female and 60 male players will be chosen based on a player’s official world golf ranking. All players within the top 15 of the rankings as of July 11, 2016 will be eligible. BUT. . . no more than 4 players can come from any one country. Countries that don’t have more than 2 players in the top 15 will send only 2 players.
The maximum-4-players-per-country rule means that a lot of top American players will be left sitting at home.
Qualifying for the Olympic Games ends July 11, 2016 and the list of contenders will be released after that. This will definitely be a hot topic next summer!
The International Golf Federation announced the qualification system to be used for golf in the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, and some top American players might find themselves sitting at home.
Golf will be played at the Olympics for the first since the 1904 Summer Olympics in St. Louis, and will feature men’s and women’s individual events. Both events will have 60 players competing in a 72-hole stroke play format competition for the Gold, Silver and Bronze medals.
According to federation rules, the 60 players will be determined by an Olympic Golf Ranking list to be published on the IGF website and is based on a player’s official world golf ranking.
All players within the top-15 of the rankings as of July 11, 2016, will be eligible, with one big caveat: No more than four players can come from any one country. The rest of the field will be determined by the world golf rankings, with a maximum of two players per country for countries that don’t have more than two players in the top-15. If the Olympics were held today, then Bubba Watson (World Rank 4th), Matt Kuchar (5th), Tiger Woods (7th) and Jordan Spieth (10th) would make the U.S. team, while top-15 players Jim Furyk (11th), Phil Mickelson (13th) and Zach Johnson (14th) would be left out. No other country has more than two players in the top 15 in the Official World Golf Rankings.
Will Tigers Game return to put him in the Top 15 by July 11th, 2016?
As the host country, Brazil will be guaranteed one Brazilian female and male golfer, if not otherwise eligible.
Also of the five continents of the Olympic Movement (Africa, Americas, Asia, Europe and Oceania) will have at least one golfer in each of the men’s and women’s events.
Qualifying for the Olympic Games ends July 11, 2016, and the final Olympic list will be released after that. The opening ceremonies for the Games are scheduled for Aug. 5, 2016.
Source : GOLF.com