PIRCE-GUIDE WILDERNESS, MACHRIHANISH, MACHRIE, ASKERNISH, SHISKINE, DORNOCH & BRORA
Quite a lot of golf tour operators will take some low-season green fees, perhaps wrap them up with a budget hotel ‘offer’, and then present them as the dreaded “prices from”. Sure it makes for an eye-catching headline. Faraway Fairways could do the same. The question really though is does this help you at all? Probably not in most cases. Does it even help us? Well most golfers probably don’t appreciate having their hopes built up only for them to wade through the detail to discover that the price that caught their attention requires them to comply with all sorts of sub-optimal conditions, usually playing in the winter months, and using an accommodation that they’d perhaps rather not do.
In truth, very, very, few golfer’s actually buy package golf vacations off the shelf anyway. It’s far more common for golfers to have their requirements met by way of a bespoke proposal. For all practical purposes then, the price of Scottish golf vacations varies as people add or omit items. All that a majority of people seem to require is an honest, and broad ballpark figure which they can then use as their foundation to build from
Guide price based on four golfers sharing twin rooms
Transport costs based on self-drive and divided by all
Typical Summer Season Price Range Guide – |
PREMIER PEAK SEASON …………………….,£3,125
Highlights – Royal Dornoch, Machrihanish Machrie & Askernish (Ardfin to be advised)
Also includes – Brora, Shiskine, Machrihanish Dunes, Durness, Gairloch, Ullapool, Isle of Harris, Glencruitten & Corrie
Duration – 12 days
Travel class – Premier
Season – mid April to September
Transport – Self-drive probably works best. Involves up to eight ferries around the Islands
There is no strict ‘shoulder season’. Different courses apply different date boundaries. Most transition during mid April, and do the same towards the end of the year in mid October. In truth however, the golf isn’t the most pressing drag on the cost
A typical golf programme has three major price components
THE GOLF (Green fees)
The cost of green fees tends to be the same for everyone regardless of how we set things up. You might like to think of the golf as ‘static’ therefore. The same is true of transport as well. A fourball party will usually generate a luggage manifest of eight items (4 suitcases and 4 golf bags). This means we tend to use the same transport solution, a 9-seater (9 luggage items) MPV (multi-purpose vehicle) such as a Mercedes Vito. The variation in price tends to come form the accommodation therefore. We think of this as ‘dynamic’ rather than ‘static’.
Important – Dynamic prices do alter dependent on the choices we make, the season we book for, and in the case of hoteliers that operate revenue yield management models outside of fixed rate contracts, the time of year we process a booking. As a general guideline, the nearer we book to the day of arrival, the more expensive things become.
Perhaps the most obvious question is does removing the price of the golf work as an estimate for the cost of a non-golfer? In broad terms, yes it does, it’s a fairly reliable guide but equally, it’s all about ratio’s again between static and dynamic components. The more expensive a hotel is (dynamic influence) the bigger the percentage contribution it makes to the overall cost.
The Wilderness tour is a little bit different to the others however given that the green fees associated with a lot of the courses aren’t prohibitively expensive. The bulk of the cost comes from accommodation and transport which means that a non-golfer is only likely to generate a price some £800 cheaper
Non-golfers can perhaps generate a few additional costs associated with visitor activities, but unless they’re indulging health spa treatments at some of the resort hotels, these are never comparable in price to a green fee.