Activities Sports & Athletics What Is a Country Club in Golf? Share PINTEREST Email Print Greg Vaughn/Perspectives/Getty Images Sports & Athletics Golf Basics History Gear Golf Courses Famous Golfers Golf Tournaments Baseball Basketball Bicycling Billiards Bodybuilding Bowling Boxing Car Racing Cheerleading Cricket Extreme Sports Football Gymnastics Ice Hockey Martial Arts Professional Wrestling Skateboarding Skating Paintball Soccer Swimming & Diving Table Tennis Tennis Track & Field Volleyball Other Activities Learn More By Brent Kelley Brent Kelley is an award-winning sports journalist and golf expert with over 30 years in print and online journalism. our editorial process Brent Kelley Updated June 21, 2019 A "country club" is a social and recreational facility that sells memberships and offers its members access to its facilities. Those facilities typically include a golf course, perhaps tennis and swim facilities, and dining. A country club usually offers social activities for its members. A country club can be very private, very expensive and very exclusive, capping membership at a small number (say, 250). Or a country club can follow a semi-private model for its golf business, giving its members preferential tee times but also allowing non-members to play the golf course. For non-members, access to a golf course that is part of a private, exclusive country club is usually only possible if you know a member. Most country clubs, no matter how private, do allow non-members to play their golf course if they are guests of a member. Another method for non-members to play a private, country club golf course is through what is known as reciprocals or a reciprocal program. That essentially means that if you belong to a different country club, you can ask your head golf professional to try to arrange for you to play at another private course.