How Much Do Golf Clubs Cost?

There Are Affordable Options for Beginners

Man and woman shopping for golf clubs
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Golf can be an expensive game—how expensive depends largely on how expensive you're willing to make it.

How much do golf clubs cost? There's no one answer to that question. You can spend as little as $2 for a used club at a thrift store or yard sale or up to $600 or more for a top-of-the-line, brand-new driver. How much you need to spend depends on your goals and requirements, and even your wants. You do, however, have options for less expensive equipment.

The Price Range of New Golf Clubs

New drivers from major manufacturers range from $250 to $600. Those prices apply to the flagship drivers offered by the most recognizable, brand-name companies. However, there are numerous less-famous brands, not to mention never-used but less-recently issued drivers that sell for much less. New drivers for less than $120 (for example, in a bargain bin at a big-box retailer) work just fine for the average amateur and serve you until (or unless) you decide to move up in quality and price.

A brand-new, top-of-the-line set of irons can range from the low $400s to $1,200 or more from the big companies.

Top-of-the-line putters can range up to $400 or more, although you can get a quality putter for around $120. 

You Don't Need to Spend a Lot as a Beginner

In addition to the obvious question of "how much are you willing to spend," the most important questions for a golf newbie to ask yourself are:

  • How dedicated are you to learning golf and getting better at it?
  • What are your goals in the game?

Before you buy your first set of golf clubs, consider this: If you're shopping for golf clubs just so you can go out a few times a year with friends, go cheap, but if you're dedicated and willing to practice to become a good golfer, spend more in the beginning.

(And if you're well-off financially? Knock yourself out!) 

As a beginner, do you need top-of-the-line equipment? Absolutely not. In fact, even some very good golfers play with inexpensive equipment. Here are some options:

  • Cheaper alternatives by golf club manufacturers of top-of-the-line clubs
  • Off-brand clubs, which are made from less expensive materials
  • Overstocks and discontinued stock
  • Knock-off clubs, which closely resemble top brands but at a lower cost

Bargain sets of iron sets start at $200, but even discontinued models of brand-name sets can be found for just $300. Cheap putters are easiest to find, many for as little as $40.

A popular option for beginners or novice golfers looking to upgrade from a hand-me-down set is the complete box set of clubs and bag. This package set typically retails at $300 or more, but you can often find one on sale for $200.

What About Used Golf Clubs?

New clubs are nice, but don't be afraid to start out with used clubs. Hand-me-downs, garage-sale, or thrift-store finds are the clubs of choice for many beginner and intermediate golfers. You can get a complete set of clubs for under $100 and may even find some real gems.

A great place to research the prices on used clubs and older models is the PGA Value Guide.

The Bottom Line on Golf Club Costs

If you're serious about becoming a good golfer and you're planning on taking lessons and working on your game, there's nothing wrong with starting out with top-of-the-line equipment—if you have the money.

But if you're on a budget or just aren't very committed to golf, you can find affordable alternatives. In fact, you can take the money you've saved on golf clubs and get some lessons, which may prove to be a better investment in the long run.