We all can agree that golf is expensive. Drivers cost up to $500 and iron sets routinely retail for over $1000. Even if you’re frugal, chances are you have at least $1000 worth of gear in your bag. You have the best clubs for your game, so why shouldn’t you protect that investment with the best golf travel bag?
Think of it this way: The right travel bag can pay for itself in a single trip and the wrong bag could be a costly mistake in just as short a time. This just isn’t a purchase worth cutting corners around.
There is no “one-size-fits-all” golf bag. Your specific gear, travel preferences, and personal style will all be deciding factors in choosing the bag that is perfect for your needs. However, there are some general considerations to keep in mind.
What to consider when choosing the best golf travel bag:
The most vulnerable area of a travel bag is the top section since one wrong toss can bang your club heads together, causing them to crack. The top of your bag should be snug when packed. For added protection, soft bags should be used with a specially designed stiff arm.
Space is a tradeoff to keep in mind when choosing the right bag. More storage isn’t always better. You want a snug fit so if you have less gear and travel light, then a smaller bag might be better for you than one with a ton of extra storage space you won’t use.
On the other hand, if you don’t mind the extra weight, and want to get your money’s worth out of airline luggage fees, then more storage space makes sense.
The same is true for pockets. Some folks like to have a special pocket for every purpose and have no trouble remembering what pocket they put their keys in. However, if you tend to forget where you put things, then 12 extra pockets to search through every time you need something is going to be a hassle.
A critical feature for a golf bag cover is the overall maneuverability. In order to make the airport as painless as possible, you want a model with a solid wheel base, well placed handles, and a design that encourages even packing. This is one of the areas where cheap bags can really let you down.
Just keep in mind that even the best design is useless unless you put some consideration into packing it with weight balance in mind. Before hitting the road, be sure your bag stands on its own in the living room before finding out in the baggage line that it won’t.
A quality golf travel bag should last more than a few dozen trips. The most common failure points include the seams, hardware (such as zippers and grommets), and wheels. All of the products featured in this review use high quality materials and hardware. Consider that box checked.
Hard versus Soft
Your golf travel bag needs to protect your clubs from rough handling by baggage handlers as well as being jostled around in the trunk with other luggage. While hard cases offer the most protection, they are generally more costly and heavier, a definite trade-off. Hard cases can be bulky and more difficult to fit in smaller cars. If you don’t have a good sized SUV, you will probably prefer to use a soft case.
Cloth bags, when packed right and used with a stiff arm, can offer excellent protection while giving you superior maneuverability, more organization options for add-on gear, and generally a much lower price tag.
Although it would be a mistake to make “cheap” your only deciding factor, finding something in your price range is obviously important. Our review below includes a wide range of price points so that you can be sure to find a quality bag that best suits your needs for a price that works for your budget.
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We have considered all of the important features listed above in our reviews. The best golf travel bags for 2018 are:
Best Golf Travel Bag: Sun Mountain ClubGlider Journey
The Sun Mountain ClubGlider Journey is a truly unique golf travel bag. It has a simple, yet very modern design, which offers good protection for your clubs alongside excellent maneuverability. Winner of the 2016 Golf Digest Award for Best Golf Travel Cover, there is a lot to love about this product. Let’s dive in for a more detailed look at the stand out features that make this bag worth the asking price and our pick for the Best Golf Travel Bag for 2018.
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The dimensions are 52x14x14 inches, so it will be enough to pack a standard sized golf bag inside along with up to 47” clubs. A little narrower than some other travel covers, you may want to be sure the dimensions will accommodate your bag before purchasing.
Another difference when comparing this model to other bags is that the pockets have interior access, with space to put a pair of shoes and some small things inside. This really adds some security to the design. You won’t have to lock down several exterior compartments to feel good about the privacy of the contents of your bag during travel.
DURABLE CONSTRUCTION AND SECURITY
The material is very strong and durable, with added paddings in the club section to provide more security for your club heads. However, we recommend that you consider purchasing a stiff arm to add protection to make sure your clubs won’t be damaged by baggage handlers.
There is an inside strap to tighten your bag, and 2 additional outside straps, to give additional protection. The main two-way zipper is heavy-duty so you won’t have problems with opening or closing even if you pack it to the gills. Weighing in at 10.7 pounds, you will be able to get this in underweight for standard airline luggage requirements.
EASY TO MANEUVER
The stand out feature that got the ClubGlider series on the map is the wheeling system. Instead of a standard 2-wheel system, this bag has an additional two wheels that are mounted on metal legs that extend from the solid plastic base. The extra wheels can turn a full 360 degrees, allowing you to maneuver the bag using just one finger.
Not only does the innovative wheel system make pulling a breeze and turns a snap, they also make this golf bag cover extremely stable while at rest. The extra stability means you don’t need to kneel on the floor to pack your bag–just pull out the wheels and it will stand steady at the perfect angle for packing.
WORTH THE INVESTMENT
The Sun Mountain ClubGlider Journey offers an innovative solution to maneuverability and ease of packing with a wheeling system that has earned it a great deal of attention. Combined with quality construction, sensible storage options, and a reasonable price tag, this is a golf bag cover that is definitely worth a second look. If you travel frequently, this easy to move golf bag cover will quickly pay for itself with less stress on your back and shoulders.
Best Golf Travel Bag – Runner Up: Club Glove Last Bag
The Club Glove Last Bag is an excellent investment for golfers who frequently fly with their gear. Built to withstand the test of time, weather, and rough handling, this golf bag cover is the choice for many touring pros. It is a bit pricey, but you can count on not having to replace it any time soon. Quality construction, top notch materials, roomy interior and excellent maneuverability are what you are paying for with this model. Read on to find a more detailed review, including a few downsides to be aware of with this golf travel bag.
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This bag gives you enormous space for everything you need on your trip. The interior dimensions of the bag are 51x19x16 inches. You can fit a stand or cart bag inside with up to a 47-inch driver. The best thing is that you have plenty of additional space left for extra shirts, towels and other “stuffing” items that will give your clubs added protection while cutting down on additional luggage. We were shocked at how many extras we found room for with this bag.
There are two side pockets which have plenty of room for your shoes, just be sure to pack these before stuffing the main compartment. When you are not using the bag, it easily folds into a compact size for convenient storage. It also has a new system that can connect your bag with other Club Glove luggage so that you can travel without worrying that you will lose a piece of luggage.
DURABILITY AND QUALITY
The material is Cordura® 1000D nylon (1600D on the base), which is an extremely resilient material. The Last Bag Pro is simply much tougher than comparable products at a similar price point, and it blows cheaper models out of the water. The zippers are heavy-duty and built to perform well over time. The wheelbase is reinforced with a thick plastic designed to be impact resistant so curbside bumps won’t cause any tears in the cover.
There are 3 interior and 2 exterior straps to secure this cover to your golf bag and make everything inside even more compact and steady. When it comes to balance, this bag can stand on its own when fully loaded. It only has two wheels, but they are well made and operate smoothly and quietly. The top and middle handles are just in the right place for easy lifting. They are made from high quality webbing, with grommet reinforcement at all the stress points.
This golf bag travel cover gets extra points for style. It comes in 18 color combinations with contrasting web trim for a sharp look. You can buy an entire set of well made luggage in this line, so you can easily spot the whole collection at the airport. Plus, for a small upcharge, you can have a custom logo embroidered on this bag. Talk about high end!
There are few things that could make this bag even better. First things first, the fact that this bag comes without a stiff arm is a drawback. However, you can buy one separately for a small additional charge. We recommend the extra investment so you can rest assured that your clubs and drivers are protected to avoid compression damage.
In addition, while there are 2 clips for shoulder straps, no shoulder strap is included. Again, you can address this with a separate purchase. Full of gear, this bag will be quite heavy, so you will be glad you went for this extra.
If you decide you are ready to spend more money for reliable, well-made gear that will last, the Club Glove Last Bag is a fine choice. Just make sure to buy a stiff arm when you make your purchase for the added protection it will give your clubs. Built to look sharp even with regular heavy use, you can’t go wrong with this model.
Best Golf Travel Bag – 3rd Place: Caddy Daddy Golf Constrictor 2
The Caddy Daddy Golf Constrictor 2 Travel Cover is a durable soft-case bag that comes with some newly implemented features and technologies. Pricing is competitive, giving this cover high ratings for overall value. There are a few downsides to consider which we will cover in more detail in this review. Overall, this is a reliable bag that will keep your gear safe from harm for years to come.
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When you open the package, you will see that the bag is folded in half and takes up very little space, convenient for storage. It has a high quality feel – the new 1800D nylon fabric makes the bag very robust, although it weighs in at only 9 pounds.
The main compartment is 50” tall and 13” by 15” wide, which is ample space for most styles of golf bags. There is plenty of room for a driver and your other clubs along with additional gear, features that even much more expensive bags don’t always provide. The side pockets are ample for a pair of shoes each and enough room to stuff in a few extra small items. An additional small pocket is perfect for keys, balls, and other odds and ends.
SECURE AND DURABLE
When it comes to protection, the top section is heavily padded to make sure that your golf clubs are safe inside. Keep in mind that this is a soft case so it doesn’t provide rigid support, although it does have reinforced curb rails and a reinforced bottom to make sure your gear won’t be damaged from rough baggage handling at the airport. The quality is definitely there.
The high grade zippers are fully lockable, although locks are not included so plan on spending a few extra bucks on those. Another stand out feature includes 2 side handles (in addition to a traditional top handle) which can be separated so that 2 people can carry the bag if needed. The top handle features an ergonomic rubber grip, the front handles are nylon padded, making them comfortable for toting around when loaded.
This model has a two-wheel rolling system which we found to be the biggest design flaw of this golf bag cover overall. Although the bag does glide well even when fully loaded, placing all the weight on just two wheels will make them wear out faster than some other models. In addition, it is designed only to tilt and roll, decreasing convenience in terms of moving the loaded bag around in tight spaces. When it comes to stability, since this bag is a soft case, there is a slight leaning forward when fully loaded, although this is to be expected.
Plenty of space, durable construction and a great price point make this a nice choice for value. Heavy travelers may want to steer towards a model with more wheels for added durability over the long haul. Otherwise, this is fairly good bag offering plenty of storage and protection for your precious golf gear.
Best Golf Travel Bag – Worth a Look: Caddy Daddy Cdx-10 Wheeled Travel Cover
If you need a durable bag cover to store and protect your golf gear while traveling, then the Caddy Daddy Cdx-10 Wheeled Travel Cover may be a good choice for you. It gets strong marks for a thoughtful design, quality craftsmanship, and value. This bag can provide equal or better protection than many similar bag covers that have a higher price tag.
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POCKETS AND STORAGE SPACE
This bag cover is 50 inches long and 13 by 15 inches wide, and yet doesn’t look oversized when loaded. It’s made out of heavy duty 600D nylon with reinforced trim. It will serve you for a long time even though it is a soft-case. The main pocket where you put your golf bag with clubs is roomy and can fit most of clubs without any trouble. The best thing is that this section has some additional space at the top where you can add some extra gear, such as a light jacket, extra socks, or a towel. This will help you keep everything you need in one place while adding some additional protection to your clubs to prevent them from shifting around during travel.
SECURE AND CONVENIENT DESIGN
There is an additional strap on the inside of the main pocket to secure your golf bag and 2 outside clamps to keep the bag cover tight. There is a handle for lifting at the top and front for easy lifting, although it does tend to lean a bit to the side when in the standing position. The 2 side pockets are big enough for a pair of shoes, and there is an additional pocket for smaller items such as cell phones and keys. Every pocket is easy to unzip with a secure, locking zipper. The bottom of the cover is reinforced for extra protection, and the inline wheels are strong and glide easily, making travel through the airport a breeze.
SOLID VALUE FOR A SECURE BAG COVER
Considering all of the features of the Caddy Daddy Cdx-10 Wheeled Travel Cover, the value is definitely there. Strong and durable, the cover is backed by a full 1-year replacement warranty. The design is practical and spacious and the security features such as locking zippers and ample straps will get you through your travels without any hassles.