Can You ACTUALLY Use Your Own Golf Cart On a Golf Course???

Showing up in a golf course with your private golf cart can mean one thing – unlimited privacy and comfort on/off the course.

That’s why some golfers would check whether the course permits them or not before they set foot there.

Hence, Can You Use Your Own Golf Cart On a Golf Course?

Absolutely, but mostly in private golf courses. Still, you might be asked to pay a certain cart fee. While other factors may come into play, the most definitive factor is whether the golf course is private or public.

Whether a golf course is private or public, there’s always a management body tasked with regulating the use of carts and stuff. Besides ensuring you are well taken care of while in the facility, these boards may set conditions on the use of private carts, levy a fee on them, or entirely ban them.

It is standard for a committed golfer to weigh between private and public courses, then settle on one while factoring in the need to bring along their carts.

So maybe we should start by creating a distinction between these two types of golf courses before looking at which is more likely to allow to permit private carts:

Private Golf Courses

Very much like any other private establishment on the planet, private courses are frequented by players with similar interests.

If you are an elite golfer with an appetite for glamour and exclusivity, you will definitely go for private courses.

However, it doesn’t mean regular golfers are barred from these establishments.

Members typically have access to the best tournaments, premium services, and personalized help. Unsurprisingly, their subscription fees are often higher than those levied in public courses.

Public Golf Courses

As you would expect, public golf courses are a flipside of private courses.

They aren’t anywhere close to being elite as private courses, meaning you have to cope with overcrowded and mixing with so many people from all walks of life.

Services too aren’t as outstanding as anything you’d find in a private golf course.

If you are a casual golfer not keen to have a luxury experience while taking your round of golf, these are the best establishments for you.

Public golf courses also offer a more economical way to enjoy the sport on a budget.

So How Do Types of Courses Determine Cart Usage?

Private golf courses are a little friendlier to private carts compared to public golf courses.

There is a reason for that: private golf courses are ‘for profit’ establishments and are typically out to create as many revenues channels as possible.

Golf carts can be an insane moneymaker considering these establishments deal almost exclusively with well-off golfers.

Don’t be surprised to pay $40 as a fee to bring along your private cart, especially on the weekend when the place is buzzing with golfers.

Another reason why private carts are charged an exorbitant fee is that the management of many golf courses isn’t normally very sure of the level of damage your cart could inflict on their turf and cart path.

It takes great resources to keep the turf and cart path in good working conditions, but things can be a little cheaper if you used the facilities’ fine-tuned carts.

Some private golf courses aren’t shy to tie this fee to the number of rounds of golf you take.

A course receiving between 20,000 – 25,000 rounds per year would expect to rake in gross cart revenue anywhere between $207,000 – $258,750.

Public golf courses, on another hand, are less keen to make a lot of money off the community.

That’s probably why your local public course doesn’t permit private carts on their premises and would be glad to provide you with one.

What Are the Other Factors Determining Whether You Can Bring Along Your Private Golf Cart?

Turns out it isn’t the type of golf alone that determines it, but a few other factors as well:

1. Electric, Cleaner Carts Are Allowed Most of the Time

All golf carts are not the same. They can be simple pushcarts, electric, gas-powered, etc.

As you would expect, some golf courses prefer certain types to others depending on how the management is committed to cut on emissions and stuff.

You will find clubs that don’t allow you to bring a diesel-powered private cart, while others will be particular to permit nothing but electric carts.

2. Small and Lightweight Carts Are Preferable

Another factor worth considering is the size of your cart.

You will be shocked by the focus some golf courses put on the weight of the cart because they believe that devices past a certain weight ruins their turf.

Check the rules and find out what they say regarding the weight and even the height of the tires before showing up with your private cart.

3. The Higher the Traffic in The Golf Course, The Less Likely They’ll Permit Private Carts

Golf carts have been found to slow the pace of the play.

While carts can help players move faster on the course, they can be a source of chaos if they are not regulated.

Designated cart paths in golf courses have done very little to ease things.

In fact, restricting golf carts to specific paths increases playing time.

A pace rating survey was conducted and found that an average golf round takes 8% longer when participant carts are restricted to paths only.

For that reason, many golf courses are starting to consider reducing the number of private carts need to reduce overcrowding and overusing these paths.

It’s better off to lease and have two players share a cart than to have every individual bring along their private cart.

That’s why some courses may ban the use of private carts in favor of their well-regulated carts.

4. If Your Cart Is Insured, You May Bring It Along

The last factor, and probably the most important one, is the insurance cover.

Most clubs, whether private or public, will require you to show a valid and most recent insurance cover for you to drive your cart into their premises.

An uninsured cart is very much like an uninsured car. For that reason, this scrutiny is aimed at establishing that you have all it takes to meet the liabilities that come with cart-related accidents while on the course

Do Golf Courses Sell Their Golf Carts?

Yes, although some municipal golf courses prefer to buy their carts instead of leasing.

In the US, a big part of the golf courses you will visit lease their golf carts from the manufacturer normally for 4 – 5 years. Yamaha, Club Car, and E-Z-GO provide over 2/3 of the fleet in the North American market.

The lease price for one car is in the region of $80 a month, but this varies depending on the add-ons. The bottom line is that it’s a highly profitable business.

When the lease concludes the fleet is returned to the manufactured for refurbishment or sale via dealerships.


Can you use your golf cart on a golf course? Absolutely, but mostly in private golf courses.

Still, you might be asked to pay a certain cart fee.

While other factors may come into play, the most definitive factor is whether the golf course is private or public.


Can you use your own Golf Cart on a Golf Course?