While others write about the new clubs they saw at the golf trade show last week, I’m writing about how I got my old clubs to the golf trade show last week. I shipped them.
Used to regularly dragging my overstuffed golf bag through airports and hotel lobbies around the world, I loved the thought of not having to schlep 50 pounds of clubs, balls, shoes, raingear, and other paraphernalia. Give up worrying that my bag made it onto the plane? Outstanding. That it would be at my destination when I was ready to tee off? Heavenly.
The service I used is Ship Sticks, which has made arrangements with UPS and FedEx to send clubs from anywhere to almost anywhere else. You could do this yourself through those same carriers, but Ship Sticks has negotiated very favorable prices, potentially saving you hundreds of dollars. The company also has established relationships with clubs—private, public, resort—around the country (and growing around the world), which can offer big advantages both picking up and dropping off.
The process is simple: Make arrangements on their website and print a label that attaches to your golf bag or a shipping box. Get the clubs to UPS (or have them picked up) and in 1 to 5 days, depending on how much you pay, they’ll be at your hotel or the course you’re playing.
So, how much? Ground shipping between New York City and Orlando is $39. That’s less than what most airlines charge for a second bag. Without the hassle of dragging it yourself.
New York to Phoenix costs $119 for three-day ground but $200 from UPS or FedEx. The same trip overnight is $159 from Ship Sticks vs. $350. You can get quick quotes on the website.
Ship Sticks makes it easy to track clubs en route, and if there’s a problem the company is much more effective yelling at the carrier than you are. I learned that the hard way as my bags were not delivered when promised. Hey, ship happens: The UPS driver either went to the wrong course or thought the course was closed (it was a Monday). Luckily, my first round wasn’t until Tuesday and the Ship Sticks people were on the phone to UPS, the course, and to me right away; the clubs were delivered the next business day well before my tee time.
Which raises an important point: Try to build in at least one extra day for screw-ups. If they’re serious, Ship Sticks’ fees include $1,000 of baseline insurance plus $200 insurance for consequential lost bags.
I’m happy to report that my clubs returned when promised. Welcome home, boys.