A good golf bag is more than just something that you use to cart around your clubs and gear. A golf bag is an extension of who you are as a player, as well as way of showing the world your preferences in brands and aesthetics.
There always comes a time for when it’s appropriate to upgrade your bag, which could be for a number of reasons. Maybe your old one has reached well past its life expectancy, and is beginning to look more than a little rough around the edges. Or maybe you’d simply like something a bit more lightweight and portable to compliment your bigger model?
Whatever your case may be, there is a bag out there to make you a very happy golfer. We also have some good news: golf bags today can be bought for cheaper than ever before, and they also come with a raft of useful features to make your life so much easier.
The only downside the huge amount of choice available is finally settling on a single brand of golf bag. There are so many companies touting their bags as if they were the best thing since the putter, only to the leave the golfer bitterly disappointed with their purchase.
For this reason, we’ve done some research on the most credible brands to buy from and have come to some very interesting conclusions!
So, if you have decided to buy a new golf bag for this year, then you have come to the to the right place. Because we have compiled a list of the best golf bags that are available on the market for 2017, and have divided our selections into a number of categories:
In this guide, you’ll discover our best picks that meet the following requirements:
- Our pick for the best overall golf bag
- Best stand bag
- The best cart (riding) golf bag
- Best pull cart bag
- Hybrid bag
We’re also aware that choosing a golf bag can be a confusing process for many golfers, new and experienced alike. For this reason, we’ve also put together a quick guide for you to digest that will put you in the best position possible when it comes to choosing your new golf bag for this season.
It took us a long time searching for the best golf bags that are on special right now so that we could share our top selections with you. As you probably could have guessed, most of the most prestigious brands in the golfing industry make an appearance on the list below.
So, if you’re on the hunt for a new bag for golfing, then we welcome you to scan over our reviews, as it could save you a significant amount of time and hassle comparing all the different bags all by yourself.
Once you’ve finished reading our list, we’re confident that you’ll find one that will be an ideal match for your golfing habits.
Best Overall Golf Bag: Nike Air Sport Stand Bag
Nike makes a lot of great sports products in general, and their Nike Air Sports Golf Bag is no exception to this rule.
What we loved about this bag is the number and quality of features that this bag comes with, even with its competitive price point. The Nike Air Sports comes loaded with premium features that you probably wouldn’t expect for the amount of money they ask for it.
- Comes with padding and two carrying straps
- Built to last
- Weighs in at around 5.5 pounds without clubs
- A rain hood is included
- Ventilation on the back pad for surviving warm and humid weather
- Nine pockets included
We were impressed that this carry bag from Nike comes included with a rain hood to save you from some unexpected weather. Most bags at this price range do not come with a matching rain hood or a copious amount of pockets, but the Nike Air does.
Another thing to mention about this bag is how durable it is. It has a mesh-reinforced coating that is designed to cope with the toughest of outdoor environments, making it built to last.
All of the above features make this bag an incredible purchase due to sheer amount of value you get in exchange for a pithy amount of money. And to top it all off, the bag is incredibly light weight, enabling you to effortlessly carry your clubs and other gear around without breaking a sweat.
- Only has an eight section divider section
- Can only fit two small cans in its cooler pocket
So you probably weren’t expecting this bag to perfect, and you’d right with that assessment. The bag’s downfall lays mostly in its divider system, which contains only eight sections, a bit less than what you’d expect from a premium golf bag. To make matters worse, bag’s divider system does not extend from the start of the bag to its end, which means your clubs and other parts may rub against each other with the potential of cosmetic damage.
In spite of the above (relatively minor) disadvantages, if you’re a budget golfer who is looking for a great bag to complete his or her kit, then we’re sure you’ll be thrilled with the performance of the Nike Air. But if you can afford to splurge a little on your bag, then it’s recommended that you opt for something with a better divider system.
Best Stand Bag: TaylorMade Tourlite Stand Bag
If you’re in the market for an entry-level, budget golf bag for under $300, then the TaylorMade Tourlite StandBag could be the model that you have been looking for.
As you could expect, this bag is affordable, yet it is still manufactured by a brand known around the world for quality. The bag also comes with a raft of useful features that makes it great value for money.
And in addition to being our best stand bag for 2017, it is also our top pick for beginners. New golfers will appreciate the bag’s low price, and will see a lot of use from its many user-friendly features.
- Ten pockets in total, including a separate compartment to fit an umbrella
- Very lightweight at just under 4.8 pounds when it is unloaded
- The shoulder straps are comfortable to wear and ergonomically designed
- Comes with two dividers that encompasses the full interior of the bag
- Rain hood included
- 5-way opening at the top of the bag
- Crush and impact resistant design
As seen from the above, this lightweight bag comes loaded with all kinds of useful features. One of our favorite things about this one is that it weighs far less than most of the other models that we have reviewed as part of this guide.
And in addition to being lightweight, it is also extremely durable, which is an impressive feat, considering that it weighs less than five pounds unloaded. The base is also cross-compatible with other parts in your kit, making it extremely versatile. But although the included dividers round the bag off nicely, they could be better.
- Does not come with a cooler pocket
- The full-length dividers are not ideal
- 5-way opening system instead of 14
Although this bag is an extremely good pick, there are a few things that we’d like to see changed about it for it to be our perfect choice. The beverage pocket is a handy thing to have, but a cooler pocket would have been better. Ideally, a golf bag should have individual slots for each club instead of the 5-way system included on this one.
But if you overlook these minor disadvantages, this model does definitely pack a solid amount of value in a discount package, and it would suit you nicely if you’d like something nimble and lightweight while trotting about on the golfing green.
Best Cart Bag: Sun Mountain 2016 C-130 Cart Bag
You might not know this, but Sun Mountain is perhaps the best brand of golf bag that you can buy, which is why their C-130 model has found its way onto our list.
The bags from Sun Mountain all come with the standard things that you could expect from a golfing bag that is close to being a high-end purchase. You get bonuses such as extended warranty periods, free shipping, as well as a raft of additional accessories that you can clip on to the bag that makes it an ideal choice.
What we liked most about the C-130 in particular was how well-made the bag was to use. Its design is exceptionally resilient, which means that it’s highly unlikely that you’ll need to change or shop around for a new bag any time soon due to defects or wear and tear.
- Fourteen full-length dividers
- Solid construction
- Included rain hood
- Only weighs 6.7 pounds when empty
- You can easily reach the pockets when they’re secured, which is thanks to the pass-through cart strap
- Two pockets to hold your valuables
- Various color and design choices
- You can always get access to the pockets when you’re on the cart
- Comes with nine pockets in total
- Works equally as well on a riding cart or a push or pull cart
What we loved the most about his bag is that it comes with two pockets to store your valuables in, and they are wide enough to fit most laser range finders. As seen with most premium models, the handles are easy to move the bag around from your trunk to the cart, as well as providing enough friction to prevent it from tipping over.
- Only room for 2 cans in the cooler pockets
Aside from the fact that the cooler pockets could have been made a little wider and longer, there isn’t much else to say that detracts from the bag’s value. Besides, most of the time you’ll be on a riding cart that comes with a separate cooler away.
Seeing pass these minor defects in the bag’s design, you’ll be left with an outstanding golfing bag that has earned itself many positive reviews. Most users rated the bag 4 and 5 stars out of 5, which makes the bag one our most recommendable options on the market today.
Best Pull Cart Bag: Titleist Lightweight Cart Bag
If you’ve been shopping around for the best lightweight cart bags available, then you should definitely consider this model from Titleist. Coming from one of the big names in the golf bag industry, their lightweight cart bag comes loaded with helpful features.
- Solid construction
- 14 slot divider system
- Weighs in at just 5.7 pounds
- 10 zip-lock pockets
- Can be used with a pull or motor cart
- Easy to lift handles and a padded swing
- You can easily access the pockets while the bag is on the cart
In spite of the enormous amount of value that can be seen above, what we liked most about this bag is it is the lightest that you can buy right now. And although the materials are designed to be thin, they are still very resilient to wear and tear.
Another thing that we really appreciated about this bag was its included 14 way divider system to keep everything organized. You also won’t have any troubles moving this bag from your car trunk to the green either.
- Only three full-length dividers
Although you do get three dividers that encompasses the bag’s entire length, that number really isn’t good enough, especially when you are paying top dollar for a premium brand. Not having a full 14 slots to hold all clubs can be a major annoyance, especially if you’ve spent a considerable amount of cash on them.
But if you can overlook the fact that there are only three full length dividers with this bag, then this may be the golf bag that you have been looking for. And to get around this issue of there only being three holders for your clubs, some people like to store only their most-used clubs in the bag’s compartments, such as their driver, putter, and one other club, such as 9-iron.
Best Hybrid Cart Bag: TaylorMade Flextech Crossover Bag
If you’re in the market for something that gives the best of both worlds, then you should consider buying a hybrid golf bag.
TaylorMade has released a particularly well-received hybrid bag that gives you all the convenience of a stand bag with the features of a carry bag, all at a competitive price that rivals the most premium of brands.
- Different colors available
- Ten pockets are included
- Included rain hood
- The base is compatible with many different golf carts
- 14-way divider system
- Durable construction
- Ergonomic shoulder strap system
This hybrid golf bag is perfect to use with a cart, but if you decide to use to carry it by yourself, then the padded straps will do their part to relieve the stress on your back and shoulders. We loved that the bag has no shortage of pockets, including a beverage cooler pocket.
- Small beverage cooler pocket
- Quite heavy
The biggest complaint that most people have about this model is how heavy it is to carry around, even when totally unloaded. The good thing is that you’ll be able to use it with a cart if you find that the bag is too heavy to use, but you may end up regretting your purchase if you walk around a lot with it.
Another minor annoyance of this bag is that it comes with only four full-length dividers to keep everything organised.
Where can I find a golf bag?
Let’s get the more simple stuff out of the way first by starting with where you can buy your next golf bag. There is no shortage of sports stores that sell golf bags, but you’ll generally find that some companies will have a far greater selection and range of prices than others.
By far, the best option is to venture online to get the best possible deal. Buying online also gives you the advantage of being able to read the reviews left by other users, as well as taking advantage of seasonal discounts.
The two most popular websites for finding a new golf bag today are Amazon and Goldsmith.
Both of these sites come with benefits such as free delivery if you spend over a certain amount, as well as being able to ask your own questions about a particular model and have your question asked by their user communities.
As you look through the different options for golf bags that are open to you, you’ll soon realize that there are really only four primary types of bags that people use. If you happen to be unsure about the model of the bag that will work for you, then take a look at our next section, as we’ve carefully broken down each type to make the decision easier to swallow.
- Free standing bags
- Tour bags
- Carry-on bags
- Cart bags
Golf carry bags are used designed to be lightweight and to house only a few of your most important clubs. Carry bags are also known as Sunday bags in golfing circles. As you could probably figure out, carry bags are designed to be lugged around, and they do not come with a stand. They’re ideal if you’re going to be walking around the course.
Carry bags only have enough room for the most basic of golfing gear, such as some balls, teas, and a few of your favorite clubs. Carry-on bags are not the complete solution, but they can be used as a backup to your primary golfing bag, or as a provision that you keep in your car for when the sudden urge to golf a few holes strikes.
Carry bags are characteristically lightweight, as they only weigh two pounds out of the box.
If you use a golf cart, then it could be a good to pick up a cart bag. Cart bags are bigger and heavier than carry bags as well as stand bags, as they come loaded with extra features.
Cart bags come with a raft of helpful accessories, such as pockets for important items, such as your watch or wallet, cooler pockets, and divider systems, so you can quickly find a club to set up that perfect shot.
Cart bags are defined by their amount of features and utility, making them one of the most feature-rich golf bags you can find on the market. Many experienced golfers, and even professionals use cart bags while on the golfing green.
Cart bags are significantly heavier that some of their alternatives, weighing in at approximately six to seven pounds while empty.
Staff (tour) bags are generally used by professionals only. Tour bags are the biggest, and heaviest type of golf bag that you can buy. The somewhat prohibitive size of staff bags means that you will need to attach them to your golfing cart to get any use out of one.
Tour bags weigh in around 10 pounds, and that’s when they’re empty! The added weight and size is the reason why they are the priciest option on the market to buy.
But if you’re the kind of golfer who has a preference for carrying your own clubs, then you should definitely opt for a a stand bag. As you could probably figure out, a stand bag comes with a stand included so you can leverage it on the ground before you tee off.
The legs on a stand bag typically do not get in the way, as they seamlessly extend to prop itself up and then effortlessly retracts when you’re ready to carry it to the next hole.
Stand bags are typically larger than carry bags, yet smaller than cart bags. You’ll be able to put all of your favorite clubs in a stand bag and they typically come with a partition system for easy access to your favorite gear.
Stand bags fall in the weight of between four and five pounds when they are fully unloaded, but you could find bags that are even more lightweight than that.
What features to keep in mind for golf bags
So, by now you should have at least a rough idea of the type of bags that are available on the market, as well as what model you think will be right for you.
Now it’s time to go over the the most common features that you’ll find in most golf bags. One thing to keep in mind as you weigh up the different brands and models on the market is that you can pick and choose more or less any feature you could want in any type of bag.
But sometimes, the availability of a particular model with the features you’d like could be scarce. So, let’s begin by listing what we consider to be the most important features when buying a golf bag, so you’ll be able to decide for yourself what makes a good golf bag for you.
The weight of your bag is a somewhat overlooked feature when buying a new golf bag. In fact, how hard or easy it will be to carry around should be one of your primary considerations. After all, the last thing that you’d want to happen is to damage your back just by carrying around all your golf gear.
Even if you decide on using a cart that you can push or pull, you’ll still want to opt for something that’s not overly heavy. For this reason, we suggest that you consider the most lightweight bags that you can find, along with the other features that are important to you.
Just like the overall weight of your new golf bag, the amount of pockets is something that can be easily overlooked in favor of more exciting features. Because you’re likely to discover that you’ll need extra pockets for things that go beyond just a few extra balls or tees, such as a rangefinder.
Unless you are playing in some particularly arid environments where it’s very unlikely to experience rain, you’ll definitely want to ensure that you have a spare pocket to house an emergency poncho or rain jacket, which is where an apparel pocket can come in handy.
You’ll also want some pockets to store your most important valuables, such as your wallet, wrist watch, or other items of significant value. Keeping hydrated throughout the day will supply you with the focus and energy you need to perfect your shots, so getting a bag with a beverage holster or sleeve is an absolute necessity.
There are also some other pockets that provide more utility than others, such as a cooler pocket that can keep your drinks chilled, and even an umbrella pocket to save yourself from the heaviest of storms.
Most premium golf bags on the market come with a rain hood, or otherwise known as a waterproof cover to protect against rain showers. Rain covers usually come included with your purchase, but if you golf bag doesn’t come with a rain cover, you can always buy one separately.
For the majority of times, you’ll see some kind of loop, ring, or clip on the side of your golf bag. You’ll need this extra loop as it is the preferred way to keep a towel at reach for cleaning your clubs and other equipment.
The amount of of dividers differs from model to model, so you should pay careful attention to the number of dividers that your bag comes with. That being said, some golf bags do not come with any dividers whatsoever.
Getting a bag with a divider system is the most reliable way to ensure that you’re not flittering away your time hunt for the right club.
It’s sometimes common to see bags with up to fourteen dividers so you can have a dedicated space for each club you own. Divider systems are most commonly seen in higher end bags, while cheaper bags will only have whats called a top divider system, which means that the ends of the clubs will touch each other in the bag.
If you own a set of expensive clubs, then a full divider system could be way the way to go. You may not want your clubs touching each other while you cart around your bag, as this can lead to some minor cosmetic damage.
Not every bag comes with a putter well, but a putter well is a dedicated area just for your putter. The advantage of having a putter well is that it can prevent the putter from making contact with the shafts of your other clubs. It will also keep your putter’s head protected at the same time.
If you plan on travelling with your golf bag, especially transporting it via land or sea, then you should look for a model that comes included with a travel hood, which keeps your golf bag secure during bumpy rides.
What to look for when buying a carry bag
If you’ve settled on a carry bag, your first step should be to decide if you like the fit of the bag or not. Carry bags can come in a backpack-style, while others look and feel like a messenger-bag. Pay extra attention to the padding of the straps to see if it meets your expectations.
If you intend on placing your carry bag on wet soil, then you should ensure that the bag is water resistant. And do you want a divider system? If you do, then you may have trouble finding a carry bag that comes with one. Because few carry bags are large enough to feature a divider system.
Features of a stand bag
The trick to assessing a stand bag is to test out the stand mechanism and see if you like how it works. Stand bags should be able to fit all of your clubs at once, which can make them quite heavy to take around with you. For this reason, ensure that the straps feel comfortable and solid while you’re wearing it, as this will give your back the most support.
Finally, you should also check the standing height of the bag to see if it’s the right fit for you. A stand bag should not be too tall or too short for you to reach comfortably.
What to look for in a cart bag
The handle on the cart bag is something you’ll need to pay extra attention to. Ensure that the handle is comfortable to use, and that it seems like it could withstand plenty of use while on the golfing green.
The amount of pockets on a cart bag is also important, as we mentioned earlier. Locate where on the bag the pockets are, because you’ll want easy access to all of them. In general, you won’t want to bending down too much to look for your needed club, tee, or ball, as this can put some serious train on your back. The height should be just right, and it should feel like the bag is doing you a convenience by being there and not the other way around.
Taking Care Of Your Golf Bag
As you start using your golf bag more and more, you’ll invariably start to see some dust and dirt build up on the bag’s exterior. The good news is that taking care of your new golf bag can be quick and easy.
If you see pollen, dirt, or other debris on your bag, then simply apply a damp cloth and brush to wipe it off. If you accidentally leave something wet in one of the pockets, or if one of your bottles or cans leaks, then you can utilize a solution made from vinegar and water to flush out the mold. If you’d like to prevent the mold from re-growing, always remember to leave the pockets open to air dry in future.
While you are home, it’s a good idea to keep your gear stored in a closet to prevent dust from accumulating on it. It’s also a good idea to cover your bag with a rain cover or towel to further enhance the bag’s protection against dust while it’s stored away.
One final note on taking care of your bag: ensure that you do not leave it out in the sun for prolonged periods of time. The sun’s damaging rays will disintegrate the fabric, which will cut the lifespan of the golf bag in half.
So that concludes our list and buyer’s guide for the best golf bags of 2017. We hope that you found this article useful and informative.
We should reiterate that all of the models above were chosen for their very positive reviews on shopping sites such as Amazon, and each has attracted numerous four and five stars out of five.. If you’d like to get any further information about the bags that can be seen above, simply click its respective link and you’ll be taken to the bag’s listing on the shopping website.
Prices and shipping terms and conditions are known to change from month to month, which is why they have been deliberately left out a part of this article.
At the end of the day, no matter what bag you choose, it should reflect a carefully chosen decision. Because most golf bags do not come with a money back guarantee, nor will they refund your money if you simply change your mind.
That being said, you won’t need to worry about manufacturer defects if your golf bag stops working within a year. As most companies on our list come with a twelve month warranty at the minimum, while others are guaranteed to last for a maximum length of time of three, or even five years.
If you’re still unsure about what golf bag is best for you
So now that you know everything you need to make an informed decision about getting a new golf bag, what do you do if you’re stuck? You could be left feeling spoilt for choice, seeing as there are so many bags and models to choose from.
Well, aside from carefully going over the reviews left by other users of each bag and making your own judgment, the next best thing you could do is to visit a sports store in person and test the bags out for yourself.
Sometimes you just need a bit of tactile feeling to see if a bag is going to be the right fit for you, other times you may need the help or assistance from an in-store salesperson or technician to answer a difficult question. Whatever the case is for you, most sports stores stock a range of different bags that you can choose from, although the selection may not be as extensive as those you can find online.
As a last resort, you can always check in with your friends and other golfers to see what model of golf bag that they recommend. But keep in mind that this method probably won’t give you an unbiased answer, as most people will tend to gravitate towards what they are using already.
That being said, Amazon’s community of volunteers could be a great way to get your questions answered if you’re on the fence about a certain model. You’ll be able to ask and get answers within days of posting your question, which is part of the reason for why we recommend that you check out the listings above to investigate if a model can suit your requirements.
Some models above may be on special, so you could get the bags at a cheaper price that you could normally find elsewhere.