Susan Bond: Insight on Women’s Golf and Travel
“Golf is such a great game for women and I, along with 1,086 women PGA Professionals, are doing our best to spread the word about all of the positives that come from participating in the sport,” says Susan Bond, a PGA Professional for 29 years. “It’s a fantastic vehicle as a business tool and women that travel together to play golf benefit by developing connections and often lifelong friendships.”
Bond grew up playing golf and she’s well versed in the women’s golf experience.
For the past six years, Bond, a University of Alabama graduate, has served as Relationship Advisor for PGA Magazine. Among her various leadership roles through the years have been New England PGA, Vice President 2014-2015 and New England PGA, Secretary 2011-2013.
Bond says she feels very comfortable around the golf course but she realizes many newcomers to the game, especially women, are very intimidated.
“I think the intimidation factor often keeps women from even trying to play,” she says. “One important thing golf courses can do is make their facility more female friendly. Simple things like good signage, an amiable staff that makes them feel welcome and instruction tailored specifically for females are helpful.”
She continues, “Once newcomers can get past the intimidation factor, they’re more relaxed and can really enjoy the game.”
The Covid-19 crisis has attracted a variety of new golfers who have found the social distancing aspects of the sport to their liking.
“It’s an amazing phenomenon but we’re seeing lots of women and juniors giving golf a try and that’s a great thing.” Bond says. “Hopefully they’ll have fun and keep playing in the future.”
Golf Travel For Women
Bond says traveling to play great courses or to attend a resort golf school is a way for female golfers to elevate their level of enjoyment with the game.
“A great way for women to play the game and enjoy the camaraderie of other like-minded women is by traveling together,” Bond says.
For beginners who want to incorporate golf instruction in their itinerary she suggests women-friendly resorts like PGA Village in Port St. Lucie, Florida and Pine Needles Lodge and Golf Club in Pinehurst, North Carolina, which is renowned for its Ladies Golfari instruction program.
Playing abroad helps broaden horizons and Bond says destinations like Ireland and Italy are appealing to women who enjoy the golf and off-the-course lifestyle. Attending major events like the Solheim Cup and U.S. Women’s Open are also popular.
“Women are becoming more aware of golf traveling opportunities,” Bond says.
In 2019, Bond coordinated a Pro-Am tournament at Casa de Campo in the Dominican Republic, a sprawling complex spread out over 7,000 acres on the country’s southeast coast. Casa de Campo is a wonderland of magnificent beaches, world-class golf courses, superb restaurants and pampering amenities.
“We had 12 teams and were scheduled to have 20 teams this year until it was cancelled due to Covid-19,” she says. “The point is, women love to get together and if they really enjoy the overall experience they’ll tell other women.”
Not surprisingly, Bond’s reasoning applies to women’s golf in general. The more women enjoy the game the more they’ll tell others about what they’re missing.