Our two biggest complaints with golf clubs are not what you might think

Alistair Dunsmuir
By Alistair Dunsmuir September 23, 2016 14:57

Research by a golf equipment superstore into what people talk about most when leaving a negative TripAdvisor review for a golf club has found that two areas stand out – and they’re not what you might think.

You would probably say the quality of the golf course would be the number one issue that irritates golfers, but less than 10 per cent of all negative reviews mentioned this. Dress codes are thought to be another common complaint but less than five per cent of negative reviews brought this up. Often on TripAdvisor people complain about pricing for hotels and restaurants, but just six per cent of negative reviews were written by people stating that their experience was overpriced.


According to Golfsupport, which analysed over 1,000 TripAdvisor reviews written in the last year about golf clubs across England, comfortably the two biggest areas for lament are customer service, which just under a third of all negative reviews brought up, and food, which was the source of more than 30 per cent of all complaints.

England are a nation of complainers, and it seems golfers are no different,” said a spokesman for Golfsupport.

“We won’t stand for bad service. Poor customer service was the most common complaint made by TripAdvisor users over the last year. They accounted for approximately 32.6 per cent of all complaints, which, was to be expected.


“Golf club staff in England are in need of a little training or motivation, because this is the biggest downfall, and one of the most common pitfalls in the services industry. Many reviewers claimed how they ‘would not return’ following the poor service received, describing the behaviour of pro shop staff along with clubhouse waiting staff as ‘inexcusable’. This is the last thing the industry needs, at a time when golf club membership rates are in decline.

“After poor customer service, food was a close second at 30.5 per cent of all complaints. Who knew that the food, and not the golf was so important to golfers? This was more surprising, as we assumed golfers cared more about the quality of the course they were playing than the grub they were being served afterwards. But nevertheless, food was below par for nearly a third of golf club reviewers. And the worst food was found in Greater London.


“The worst place to golf through complaints alone was Greater London. Golf clubs here received the highest proportion of negative reviews with 34 per cent of all reviews. Greater London golf clubs also had the worst customer service, the worst food and were the most outdated of all golf clubs in England.”

Cornwall had the most positive amount of reviews and Cumbria the least negative.

More on this research can be found here.

Alistair Dunsmuir
By Alistair Dunsmuir September 23, 2016 14:57
Write a comment

1 Comment

  1. golfshake September 29, 16:44

    This possibly needs to be taken into context in that Tripadvisor will generally be used to review trips, overnight stays, holidays, dining and then activities such as golf at a very low level.

    We conducted some similar research on Golfshake specifically focused on golf course reviews and customer service was most definitely a very important aspect. You can read more via this link:


    Reply to this comment
View comments

Write a comment

Your e-mail address will not be published.
Required fields are marked*

Join Our Mailing List

Read the latest issues

Advertise With Us

To advertise in the magazine or online, contact:

Email marketing@thegolfbusiness.co.uk

Social media