For bargain hunters, it's the most wonderful time of year in Myrtle Beach


Myrtle Beach is always great bargain golf destination. You can virtually name your price anytime of year and check into a condo and onto a golf course. 

It's just that your money stretches further some months than others. The Grand Strand golf scene has a dizzying seasonal rate structure. Courses and hotels can change rates up to a dozen times a year. During the summer, courses are their most affordable, but hotels are the priciest to account for all the beach traffic. In the spring, resorts are bargains while it's still too cold for the beach, but tee times are at a premium. 

For golfers, the best time of year for bargains is between Thanksgiving and Christmas, especially if you're not too worried about getting a suntan. September-thru-November is the peak fall season, but December offers green fees comparable to summer low season, while hotels offer some of their lowest rates as well. And based on my experience living there for two winters, December’s weather seems to be less spotty than January and early February, when course rates and traffic trends upward again. 

For a good example of how far your money stretches between Thanksgiving and Christmas, consider Caledonia Golf & Fish Club, considered by many the area’s best course. In the spring, it’s a $190 green fee. But next week, you can book the course on GolfNow, any time you want, for $97.50. While it can be tough to find a green fee in the South Strand under $80 in the spring, you can play the Tradition Club, one of my favorite unsung courses, for under $50. You can add Prestwick Country Club, a Pete Dye design for $53. 

Add up the green fees for Tradition, Prestwick and Caledonia next week and it’s only $10 more than playing ONLY Caledonia in April. Course conditions are better in the spring, but the fairways and greens are over-seeded and green in December, too. 

If your group looks into stay-and-play packages,  these rates get all that much more appealing. And between the holidays, flights tend to be less expensive as well. It’s all the more reason to talking the family into doing Christmas a few weeks early in Myrtle Beach if there are enough golfers in the bunch.