The Best Golf Gifts: What Every Golfer Needs Before Hitting the Course

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Whether you're obsessed with the game yourself or buying a gift for someone else, knowing what to look for can be a challenge. While there are countless options available, the best golf gifts are the ones that are reliable each time you tee it up on the course.

Certain gifts are clothes that become part of our daily wardrobe both on and off the course, while others are trusted parts of our equipment that make the game more enjoyable. Whether it's the most respected golf balls in the game, a watch that goes beyond typical fitness tracking, or apparel that has us looking and feeling our best, a great golf gift keeps us coming back.

To help as you look, the ACTIVE Reviews Team has put together a full list of recommendations for each major golf category.

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The Best Golf Gifts - Our Top Picks

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Most Popular Golf Gift - Under Armour Playoff 2.0 Polo Shirt

Under Armour Playoff 2.0 Polo Shirt

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Known for being lightweight and breathable, the Under Armour Playoff has developed a loyal following amongst both diehard and casual golfers. The shirt's polyester fabric is soft and stretchy, allowing for a full range of motion during the golf swing. The polo's moisture-wicking performance, UPF 30 sun protection, and anti-odor technology also keep golfers cool on hot days.

The Playoff's comfortable fit makes it an option beyond the course. Golfers enjoy wearing it out to dinner, in a business casual setting, or even just while lounging around the house. That can't be said for many golf shirts, which makes the Playoff a popular pick amongst our panel.

PROS

  • Lightweight and breathable
  • Soft and stretchy material
  • Moisture-wicking performance
  • UPF 30 sun protection
  • Anti-odor technology
  • Anti-pill performance to maintain fresh look

CONS

  • Shirts run smaller in size
  • Skews more to being a slim fit

BUY: Under Armour Playoff 2.0 Polo Shirt

Best Golf Shoes – Adidas BOA Spikeless Golf Shoes

Adidas BOA Spikeless Golf Shoes

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Spikeless golf shoes have been gaining traction in recent years, and the Adidas BOA Spikeless is at the top of that list. With no laces, these golf shoes rely on a dial that tightens and loosens the shoe, as well as a zipper that opens and closes the sole. Made with a running shoe in mind, the Adidas Boost technology provides superb padding, comfort, and flexibility.

These kicks are waterproof and stain-resistant, adding to what is one of the most athletic golf shoes on the market. It's a sleek golf shoe that values comfort and fit.

PROS

  • Spikeless traction allows for secure footing
  • BOA Fit System helps to fine-tune tightness
  • Boost technology provides substantial comfort
  • No need to replace laces or spikes
  • Waterproof
  • Stain-resistant
  • Made partly with recycled materials

CONS

  • Little crossover to non-golf setting
  • The zipper on the sole may not appeal to those used to traditional golf shoes

BUY: Adidas BOA Spikeless Golf Shoes

Best Golf Balls – Titleist Pro V1 Golf Balls

Titleist Pro V1 Golf Balls

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The Titleist Pro V1 is a respected powerhouse in the golf world. With a 2.0 ZG Process Core and a soft cast urethane elastomer cover system, these golf balls are trusted by the best players in the world. The clean look and distinct stamping are among the most iconic pieces of equipment in golf.

It's not necessary to be a great or experienced player to enjoy using them. Most golfers will immediately notice how the Pro V1 has a softer feel and increased distance when compared with other golf balls. That makes it a reliable selection and one of the best golf gifts you can give.

PROS

  • Long distance with low long-game spin
  • Soft feel
  • Top-tier short game control
  • Penetrating trajectory
  • Trusted by top players in the game

CONS

  • Among the most expensive golf balls on the market
  • High-handicap golfers may not appreciate the difference in golf ball quality

BUY: Titleist Pro V1 Golf Balls

Best Golf Shorts – Lululemon Commission Golf Short 10”

Lululemon Commission Golf Short 10

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These classic fit golf shorts from Lululemon cater to golfers of all ages. Their clean appearance is reminiscent of traditional golf shorts we've come to know over the years. And, the Nylon material makes for a stretchy and breathable pair of shorts that can be worn nearly anytime and anyplace.

One feature we're particularly fond of is the set of pockets. Golfers love carrying around gear like tees, scorecards, gloves, and ball markers. These shorts are adept at storing these items without any fear of items falling out.

PROS

  • Stretch elastic panels on the waistband
  • Designed with golf swing in mind
  • Streamlined fit that gives glutes and thighs breathing room
  • Water-resistant
  • Secure back pockets for phone and scorecards
  • Versatile for non-golf setting

CONS

  • Higher end price point for golf shorts
  • Larger sizes often not available

BUY: Lululemon Commission Golf Short 10”

Best Golf Watch – Garmin Approach S60

Garmin Approach S60

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Golfers are obsessed with knowing every detail about a course. The Garmin Approach S60 watch provides key golf metrics like accurate GPS information, green contour data and an easy-to-read touchscreen. There are over 41,000 courses a golfer can choose from, so chances are you’ll be able to use it wherever you play.

This watch connects to your smartphone and can be used beyond the golf course as phone notifications are sent directly to your watch. It can also be utilized in other athletic settings, such as running, swimming or hiking.

PROS

  • Large, sunlight-readable color touchscreen
  • Compatible with smart phone
  • Accurate GPS shows precise yardages
  • Over 41,000 courses available
  • Battery life goes up to 10 hours in golf mode and 10 days in watch mode
  • Can be used in non-golf setting
  • Non-golf features include heart rate monitor and hydration tracking

CONS

  • Many golfers prefer not to wear watches while they swing
  • Some functions take time to understand how to use
  • Touchscreen can be sensitive

BUY: Garmin Approach S60

Best Golf Sunglasses – Oakley Half Jacket 2.0 XL Rectangular Sunglasses

Oakley Half Jacket 2.0 XL Rectangular Sunglasses

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A modernized version of the popular original, the new Half Jacket sunglasses present the same core fit and interchangeable lens functionality but with an updated design.

Comfortable sunglasses are a critical piece of equipment for most golfers. The best sunglasses for golfers combine sharp vision quality with a comfortable-fitting frame. The simple and sporty Oakley Half Jacket 2.0 excels in both of those categories.

PROS

  • Polarized lenses reduce glare
  • Plutonite lense material resists impact, fogging and scratches
  • Hydrophobic anti-smudge coating
  • Comfortable frame

CONS

  • Higher price point than most

BUY: Oakley Half Jacket 2.0 XL Rectangular Sunglasses

Best Golf Ball Retriever – Callaway Golf Ball Retriever

Callaway Golf Ball Retriever

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Losing golf balls is a fact of life when it comes to playing the game. For those times when your ball is just barely out of reach in the water or trees, a golf ball retriever allows you to avoid parting ways with your ball for good. Oftentimes, it's also useful for finding new golf balls that have been left by other players.

The Callaway Golf Ball Retriever is a sturdy catcher that extends up to 6 feet and can easily fit into your golf bag. It comes with a headcover that makes the retriever look like another club, which is a nice benefit for keeping clubs organized. This is one of the best golf gifts for someone who plays a lot in a non-competitive, casual environment.

PROS

  • High-quality aluminum alloy
  • Telescoping design
  • Can reach 6 feet
  • Retracts to just 25 inches
  • Ergonomic sure-grip handle
  • Durable stainless steel retriever mechanism
  • Dual-zip headcover included

CONS

  • Heavier ball retriever that can be difficult for longer reaches
  • Retriever clamp on the head often comes off and has to be re-attached

BUY: Callaway Golf Ball Retriever

Best Golf Set – Wilson Men's Complete Golf Club Package Sets

WILSON Men's Complete Golf Club Package Sets

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If you are just getting into golf or know someone who is, this Wilson set is a strong starting point. With a reasonable price point, nine clubs and a golf bag, this set provides everything a beginning player would need to enjoy the game. There is a 460 CC driver that provides a large, easy-to-hit sweet spot and each of the scoring clubs features low weighting for enhanced greenside control.

PROS

  • Set comes with nine clubs
  • Relatively low cost
  • 460 CC driver features large sweet spot
  • Deep stainless-steel cavity-back irons
  • Scoring clubs with low weighting for better greenside control
  • Lightweight carry bag with adjustable shoulder straps

CONS

  • Doesn’t come with full set of 14 clubs
  • Limited technology for highly advanced players

BUY: Wilson Men's Complete Golf Club Package Sets

Best Golf Pullover – Patagonia Better Sweater ¼ Zip Fleece Jacket

Patagonia Better Sweater Zip Fleece Jacket

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Quarter-zip pullovers have long been a favorite of golfers because they provide warmth without being overly restrictive. The golf swing requires a wide range of motion with your arms, and a jacket like the Patagonia Better Sweater provides exactly that while still being cozy.

This pullover has the versatility of being comfortable on the course, during a weekend hike, or on a day going around town. A jacket like this one could be particularly beneficial if you live in colder climates or during chillier temperatures.

PROS

  • Soft inner fleece maintains warmth
  • Quarter-length zipper for ventilation
  • Raglan style sleeves allow for full mobility
  • Flat seams prevent chafing
  • Cuffs and hem hold shape over time
  • Zippered chest pocket
  • Can be used off the course
  • Material is 100 percent recycled polyester
  • Variety of color options

CONS

  • Thicker material may not appeal to golfers looking for a lighter pullover
  • Casual fit rather than an exclusive athletic fit

BUY: Patagonia Better Sweater ¼ Zip Fleece Jacket

Best Golf Tech – Callaway Laser Golf Rangefinder

Callaway Laser Golf Rangefinder

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Once a golfer goes from being a beginner to a routine player, a rangefinder is among the most sought-after pieces of equipment. Everyone needs to know the distance of their upcoming shot. It gets old having to ask fellow playing partners to shoot yardage for you.

The Callaway Laser Golf Rangefinder is among the simplest, yet most inexpensive and accurate options to make sure you are getting the proper distance. With a range of 5-1000 yards, you'll able to shoot pins and other hazards to make sure you know where to aim and which club to hit.

PROS

  • Precision slope measurement
  • Maximum magnification for range of 5-1000 yards
  • Pin-locking technology for pins up to 300 yards away
  • Pulse confirmation to confirm correct distance
  • External slope on/off switch
  • Legal for tournament play
  • Premium molded hard carry case
  • Lower price point for rangefinders

CONS

  • Does not lock into the pin as easily as more expensive range finders
  • Yards/Meters switch often hit on accident

BUY: Callaway Laser Golf Rangefinder

More Great Golf Gifts

FAQs


What do golfers want for gifts?

At the end of the day, golfers just want something they know they will use. The golf world is full of gimmicky gifts that never get opened. The best golf gift will get repeated use, oftentimes crossing over into the apparel and accessories we enjoy in normal day-to-day life.

Where can I find the best golf gifts?

In addition to being found online at Amazon or each brand's respective website, the best golf gifts can be bought in person at a variety of retail outlets. Some of the top options include Dick's Sporting Goods, Edwin Watts, PGA Tour Superstore, and Golf Galaxy.

What are the five things you need to play golf?

Every golfer needs the essential equipment to play the game. The bare minimum includes a set of clubs, a golf bag, golf balls, and a glove. Most players also wear a standard golf outfit. This generally includes a polo shirt, golf shorts, and golf shoes.

What clubs should every golfer carry?

A typical set of 14 clubs comes with a driver, at least one fairway wood, a handful of irons, three or more wedges, and a putter. Each club serves a different purpose. Longer and lower-lofted clubs are meant to hit the ball longer distances while shorter and higher-lofted clubs are meant to hit the ball shorter distances.

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