How Much Time Does It Take To Play A Round Of 18 Holes Of Golf?
As golf is an untimed sport, the playing time of a golf round varies in length. However, an average round of 18 holes is considered to take roughly 4 hours, which is about 13 minutes a hole. A golf club in Florida tracked the playing time of its golfers for two years and found the average was 4 hours and 11 seconds.
The time can depend on several factors, which we’ll go over below.
A golfer’s skill level directly affects how long it will take to play 18 holes. Naturally, more experienced golfers will need fewer strokes to reach the hole compared to less experienced players. Using fewer shots requires less time to prepare for your shots, locate your ball, and complete each hole. Typically, the higher your skill level, the faster you will be able to complete an 18 hole round of golf.
If you are playing on a par 3 course, where the holes are shorter (and easier, typically), you can expect the round to take less than 4 hours. A competent golfer could reasonably expect to finish a par 3 course in about three hours. On the flip side, if you are playing on a more challenging golf course and you happen to be a less experienced golfer, it may take you more shots to finish the round, resulting in more time.
Golf is usually played in a “foursome,” where four golfers play together on the same hole. However, there is nothing wrong with playing in a pair or even individually. Playing with a larger group will take more time to finish, especially if one or more members of your group has less experience golfing. Even professionals will hit shots in the rough or out of bounds, but taking an excessive amount of time to finish holes can make a round of 18 take up to five hours.
Groups Ahead of You
Let’s go back to the golfer that can finish a par 3 course in three hours. While they can brisk through the course, a golfer can only go as fast as the group in front of them. Even if an individual is a highly experienced golfer, they could be playing behind a foursome that takes 15-20 minutes at each hole. It is an unfortunate circumstance that all golfers have faced before, but it is another aspect that should be taken into consideration for how long a round should take. Sometimes, a slower or larger group will let a smaller or faster group “play through,” meaning the larger or slower group will allow the smaller group to skip past them and play in front.