What is a Sunday Golf Bag? (are they any Good?)

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Golf is a religion to many thousands of people across the globe. It only makes sense that the golf community would come up with a name like ‘Sunday golf bag’ to describe an aspect of the sport.

We’re going to dive into the origin, history and reasons why players are attracted to the famed Sunday golf bag.

Golf is an exceedingly difficult game that is made more difficult by the burden of lugging around a thirty to fifty-pound golf bag around the course.

Sunday golf bags solve that problem for many people. They offer a lightweight solution for a golfer that wishes to walk eighteen holes without the distraction of a caddie.

Why Is it Called a Sunday Golf Bag?

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The name ‘Sunday golf bag’ originates with the religious observance of the Sabbath on Sundays. Caddies were not allowed to work on the Sabbath and if golfers wanted to play on the course they were forced to carry their own golf bags.

Some of the original golf clubs in Scotland allowed golfers to play on Sundays without the assistance of a caddie.

Equipment was far heavier when the game was first invented than the high-tech and lightweight clubs that we have now.

This led to the invention that we now know as the Sunday golf bag. The Sunday golf bag is also known as a ‘pencil’ bag.

How Many Clubs Fit in a Sunday Golf Bag?

A Sunday golf bag typically contains between six and eight golf clubs, depending on the player. Golfers are not constrained by any specific number of clubs allowed in a Sunday golf bag. There are no rules regarding the number of clubs you can carry in a Sunday golf bag.

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The current USGA (United States Golf Association) handbook, the de facto go-to rule book for most golfers, limits a player’s bag to no more than fourteen golf clubs.

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Most players do not have any issues adhering to this rule as fourteen clubs are more than enough for drivers, fairway woods, irons, wedges, and (hopefully) only one putter.

This is one of the first rules in the USGA handbook (Rule No. 4) and says that:

based on the principle that golf is a challenging game in which success should depend on the player’s judgment, skills and abilities, the player is limited to no more than 14 clubs and normally must not replace damaged or lost clubs.

There are no current rules that require a golfer to have a minimum amount of golf clubs. It is common for beginners with full sized golf bags to carry only four or five clubs.

What is a Golf Sunday Bag for?

The name for a ‘Sunday golf bag’ describes a lightweight collection of golf clubs stored in a golf bag that players can carry on their own without exhausting them throughout the round. 

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Sunday bags are now known for being an ultralight style of bag, and style of club selection, that allows players to walk golf courses without getting tired by a heavy golf bag.

A professional golfer on circuits like the PGA, LPGA, and Kornferry Tour has a golf bag that weighs anywhere from thirty to fifty pounds.

This number varies greatly depending on if the player is using the full allowance of fourteen clubs, how many extra balls they’re carrying, additions of an umbrella and rain gear as well as what kind of food and drink they require.

One PGA tour caddie by the name of Damon Green said that “if they’re playing good the bag is light. If they’re playing badly, it’s really heavy”.

This also leads one to wonder if a ‘Sunday bag’ is also describing a player walking into the last day of a tournament so confident that they feel they don’t need any extra clubs.

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Are Sunday Bags Worth It?

A Sunday golf bag is worth it if you are looking for a lightweight option to carry a smaller amount of clubs than is loaded in a traditional golf bag. They are the best option for a player that wishes to walk eighteen (or more) holes without having to carry an overburdened and heavy golf bag.

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The market is saturated with golf bags that are intended to be used for ‘Sunday golf’. Almost every golf bag manufacturer has at least one (most have multiple) one option that caters to the ultralight consumers.

You can also use your current golf bag and turn it into a Sunday golf bag with the right club selections.

There are no rules about using a regular golf bag that is loaded with only a few clubs.

What Else Should I Put in My Sunday Bag?

Most players will carry extra golf balls and tees in their Sunday golf bag. These are the most commonly needed things and are also lightweight by default. There is also enough room for a small hand towel that can be used to wipe done clubs in the rain.

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In addition to other ‘consumables’ like balls and tees, most players carrying a Sunday golf bag will also have a rangefinder or a GPS unit clipped to their bag.

How Much Are Sunday Golf Bags?

You can purchase entry-level brand new Sunday golf bags for less than $100 but can reach well past that amount for brand name ultralight bags such as Titleist or Callaway Golf.

The features that determine how much a Sunday golf bag will cost include the weight of the bag, the strap that you carry the bag with, if or if not it has a stand (and if it’s automatic), how many pockets the golf bag as well as price.

None of those features matter, however, if you don’t find a Sunday golf bag that is known for its durability.

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There are more economical (read: cheap) bags for sale that will only stand up to about six months of regular use but only a few manufacturer’s bags stand out as quality products.

Lightweight can also equal poor quality of fabric that makes up the body of the bag.

This kind of low-quality fabric is susceptible to staining, tears, and fading in the sun.

Where Can You Buy a Vintage Sunday Golf Bag?

You can buy vintage Sunday golf bags on most internet marketplaces. Golf equipment is one of the most common things you can see posted on places like Craigslist and Facebook Marketplace. These listings are generally local pick up only because the seller will not deliver.

That is not a bad thing for someone searching for a vintage Sunday golf bag because people are normally trying to almost give away old golf clubs and bags.

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eBay is the most popular place to purchase a Sunday golf bag by itself.

Sellers on eBay will ship the item right to your house without the hassle of having to dispose of aging golf clubs.

Are Sunday Bags Good for Golf?

Yes, Sunday bags are good for golf because they offer a real alternative to the heavy shoulder bag or cumbersome pushcart. Many golfers use them for weekend use or when they travel away and have to pack light.

Most people that have tried to master the game of golf have come to the same conclusion.

It is a game that cannot be beaten. Golfers are on a perpetual mission to master the game and will do anything to help their pursuit.

Lightweight equipment like a Sunday golf bag is one of the ways that players try to get ahead of the game.

They help an exceedingly difficult game easier without the burden of lugging around a thirty to fifty-pound golf bag around the course.

Anyone can walk around eighteen holes if they are using a Sunday golf bag!