What to Wear Golfing the First Time

So you've decided to start playing golf and you're about to head to the course for the first time when the challenge arises regarding the clothing that you should wear. The dress code for golf is actually pretty strict. There are many items of clothing that aren't allowed to be worn on the course.

You may find some golf courses to be more relaxed than others. While your local course may allow you to play in whatever attire you turn up in, championship standard courses will have a stricter dress code in place. You don't want to be that person who turns up at the golf course excited to start playing only to be turned away because you don't fit the dress code, so it is always useful to check with your golf course beforehand.

The attire that men and women are expected to wear has many similarities.

What to Wear Golfing the First Time

Our guide below aims to have you fully equipped with the attire that is going to be expected of you so that you are ready for your first time at the golf course. We have broken down each category below providing an insight into the attire that is likely to be expected of you when you head to the golf course for the first time.


The majority of golf clubs generally expect men to be wearing a collared polo shirt with most expecting women to be wearing the same. However, you may find that some clubs give women the choice of wearing a sleeveless collared top or a turtle neck top. A dress is another alternative, although this must be an athletic dress of a certain length.

Your shirt can either be made from a fabric or synthetic material. The material that you choose is largely influenced by the climate that you commonly find yourself playing in. In warmer weather, a breathable material that isn't going to collect sweat is going to be the preferred choice. However, when playing in colder weather ideally, you want to be wearing a material that is going to keep you warmer. Many golf clubs will allow you to wear additional layers if you are playing in colder weather, this includes a pullover, a vest, or a smart thermal jacket.

You should avoid shirts with graphic prints, t-shirts, jerseys, baggy shirts and they should always be tucked into your trousers. 


When it comes to the bottoms, you have two options to choose from with the choice of full-length pants or shorts. It is important to note that shorts aren't allowed to be worn at some clubs. Whilst this only applies to a few clubs it is worth checking with your club beforehand.

Clubs that allow you to wear shorts provide greater versatility when you are faced with warm weather as you don't have to suffer in the warmer temperatures. When the weather gets colder you may opt to wear full-length trousers. Your pants should sit just above your shoes with loopholes for a belt if needed.

For women, there is a style of trouser available called ''Capri'' trousers that most courses allow them to wear, however, there is also the option of wearing a skort when the weather gets warmer. 

Your trousers should fit into a particular color pallet. This typically tends to be muted and neutral colors such as cream, beige, khaki, grey, navy, etc. As you progress in your game, you may then venture into a broader spectrum of colors.


Now when it comes to footwear, you can't just turn up to the course in any pair of shoes as you are expected to wear a particular style. It is important to pick golf shoes that you are going to find comfortable enough to wear for long periods as the concept of golf largely centers around trekking around the course on foot. Uncomfortable shoes are going to make this a challenge likely resulting in painful and sore feet. The majority of golf courses will allow you to wear sneakers or tennis shoes. You may find it beneficial, to begin wearing this type of shoe as golf shoes can actually be rather expensive, and may be a wasted purchase if you end up disliking the game after your first time playing.

Golf shoes are typically designed with traction on the underfoot of the shoe which helps to keep you in a stable position and prevents you from slipping as you take your swing and hit the ball. 

There are two options available for golf shoes: those with spikes and those without spikes. However, many clubs now prohibit the wear of shoes with spikes due to the damage that they cause to the golf green. Those with soft studs such as plastic or nonmetal are popular, similarly to spikeless shoes which tend to be the desired choice amongst golfers who suffer when walking in shoes with prominent studs. These shoes have smaller studs which tend to make them easier to walk in with comfort. 

Remember that most clubs will not allow you to play if you are wearing unsuitable footwear. Ensure that you are wearing the correct pair that conform to the expectations of your club and are going to deliver long-lasting comfort as you make your way around the course.

Belt and Socks

When you're playing golf you don't want to be walking around the course wearing ill-fitting trousers that don't remain in place. Most golf trousers will be designed with a built hoop. You will also find that some golf courses expect you to wear a belt even if you don't necessarily require one. This is because a belt tends to make your outfit appear much more put together. There isn't a certain style of belt that you are expected to wear as you are given more flexibility when it comes to choosing your belt. 

Your socks should be comfortable enough to wear for a prolonged amount of time. In warm weather, your feet are likely to sweat quite a lot so it is important to choose a pair that are made from a breathable fabric. Cotton socks are a comfortable choice. This fabric maintains a breathable and cool environment for your feet. Some retailers will also offer socks specifically intended for golf.


There are a variety of hats available. You may find a more neutral conservative style of hat to be the preferred choice. If you are playing in warmer weather a hat is important in providing effective sun protection. The most commonly sought after style of hats tend to be baseball caps. It is not advised to wear a bucket hat, backward hat or cowboy hat as these are typically frowned upon in many golf courses. 


Wearing gloves for many is a choice as it is not an obligatory part of the expected attire. Golf gloves can provide greater comfort which some golfers may opt for if they are playing longer games, as it enables you to get a better and more consistent grip on your club throughout the game. It is important to select the gloves in the right-hand orientation and some players may choose to wear one glove on the hand that they place on the top of the handle. You may find particular brands that produce golf gloves that encourage you to make your purchase with them. It is important to ensure that your gloves fit correctly. If they are too tight there is a risk of them restricting your blood circulation. Those that are too big aren't going to remain on your hands securely and may affect how good you can grip the club. 


When it comes to your first experience at the golf course, it is important to ensure that you are kitted out in the correct attire before stepping foot onto the course. As stated, the smallest thing can result in refusal in allowing you onto the course. The rules of some courses may differ to others, with some having stricter rules in place than others. For example, some courses don't allow shorts to be worn whilst others do. There also tends to be minor differences between the attire for men and women with smaller differences to be noted between the style of top and the bottoms that can be worn. Elsewise, the shoes, hats, etc are typically the same for both men and women. The dress code, on the whole, is rather strict with the appearance expected to be of a more professional and smart manner. Some elements of the outfit may be more costly than others so you may choose to look for cheaper alternatives to ensure that you actually like the game before kitting yourself out in the more expensive options. For your first time stepping onto the course remember you want to make the right impression.

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