Golf Buggy: Let's Go for a Ride

Two golfers sitting in a buggy on a golf course.

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"Golf buggy" is a term used primarily in Australasia and Europe and refers to the motorized cart used to transport a golfer's bag of clubs plus the golfer around the course. In other words, what in North America would more likely be called a golf cart or riding cart would, in the areas mentioned, be referred to as a buggy.

Golf buggies come in many shapes and sizes, with just as many price variants for sale. Most commonly, a buggy is built to seat two passengers plus two golf bags. But single-seaters and buggies built for more than two are also sometimes seen on the golf course. (Those versions are more likely to be used off-course, for transportation around work sites, for example, or for road use within a confined neighborhood.)

Key Takeaways

  • A golf buggy is a motorized vehicle used on a golf course to transport both the golfer's bag and the golfer herself.
  • "Buggy" is the preferred term for such vehicles in the U.K., Europe and Australia, to name a few. In the United States, they are called "golf carts."
  • Buggy is sometimes used to mean a push cart or hand cart just for a golf bag, but another term is more appropriate for that.

Renting a Golf Buggy

Not all golf courses allow the use of buggies, but at those that do there will typically be buggies available for rental. A golf club that rents buggies might have a hundred or more in what it calls its "fleet." At such clubs, there is also a building known as a "buggy house," "buggy barn," or "cart barn" where the carts are stored overnight, and where maintenance is done.

Most golf courses today that offer buggy rentals use electric-powered carts, but gas-powered carts are still in use many place. There is no industry-standard, 18-hole rental fee for a buggy. Generally, the cheaper the golf course's green fees, the cheaper the cart rental fee will be; and the more expensive the green fee, the higher the cart fee will be.

Generally, when golfers book a tee time they are provided the option to reserve a buggy, too, if, in fact, buggies are allowed at that course.

Golfers who rent a buggy for the round should know before how to practice good golf cart etiquette, follow any rules posted by the golf course for where the cart can be driven around the course, and observe any golf cart safety guidelines provided.

Buggy vs. Trolley

Some golfers also use the term "golf buggy" to refer to what are also called hand carts, push carts or walking carts. However, in the areas where the term "buggy" is the preferred term for a riding cart, a push cart is far more likely to be called a "trolley." A buggy is a cart for the golfers and their clubs to ride in; a trolley carries the golfer's clubs with the golfer walking.