NGF COVID-19 Update – Golf Courses Now 79% Open and Retail Is Following
NGF’s latest national survey shows significant weekly jump in course reopenings while golf retail openings accelerate
Jupiter, FL – The National Golf Foundation’s sixth week of nationwide surveys found that 79% of U.S. golf courses were open for play last week amid the coronavirus pandemic, a significant jump from 58% the previous week.
The biggest change was in the Mid-Atlantic U.S census region, where Pennsylvania and New Jersey – which have more than 1,000 courses between them – both permitted play to resume. In total, seven states allowed golf courses to reopen on May 1 and 2, while an increasing number of California counties continued to lift restrictions on golf and additional courses opened over the past week in states such as New York, Florida, Wisconsin and Michigan.
Visit the NGF’s special COVID-19 impacts page to find the latest regional changes in course reopenings as well as an updated openings forecast.
“Having almost 80% of courses open for play is not the same as a ‘green light’ for golf. It’s much more of a ‘yellow light,’ said NGF President and CEO Joe Beditz. “There are still serious restrictions — for operators and golfers alike – including many state mandates prohibiting pro shops from opening, banning the use of golf cars, or restricting F&B operations. In a state like New Jersey with 16-minute tee time intervals and twosomes, that’s eight people on the golf course an hour. That’s not yet “open,” and golf is probably being provided “below cost” in some places where revenues are restricted to greens fees only.”
More doors are opening at specialty golf retailers too, with accelerated store openings in certain geographies. An estimated 39% of retail locations and square footage is open, up from 17% of total square footage late last week.
But even as retail doors open, will golfers follow? NGF’s latest consumer research suggests many core golfers will continue exercise caution and seek to avoid unnecessary exposure to virus risk. Details here.
The NGF’s special webpage is dedicated to continuing research on the effects of the coronavirus on golf and features the latest data and information on course operational status, government orders, consumer sentiment, and much more. NGF’s ongoing national tracking of golf facilities provides an in-depth overview of course openings and temporary closures through the most nationally-representative sample in the industry.
About the National Golf Foundation
The National Golf Foundation is a community of individuals and golf businesses committed to being the most well-informed advocates for the growth of the industry. With the world’s largest research team dedicated to golf, NGF provides members with the most accurate and objective insights on the game. We help golf businesses better understand their market and grow their businesses. The NGF is the only association for everyone in golf, and we advocate for growth by educating and connecting our members.
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