Originally Posted by Beachcomber
Walk around the green. I think carrying a bag across the green is rude. Definitely never pull/push your cart across the green.
I almost always walk around the green too (because really, unless you're playing a course with massive greens or something, going around doesn't add too much distance or time), but I don't think it's RUDE to walk across the green with your bag on. Me walking across the green is certainly better than having a 250+ pound guy walk across the green.
In Australia they encourage players pull/push their carts across the greens. It minimizes wear "just off" the greens and helps keep the conditions firm and fast. Same is true at the courses at Bandon and Chambers Bay.
DON'T PAMPER THE GREENS
Here's the best part: heftier-wheeled manual carts have been around Aussie links forever and are even considered part of the maintenance plan. At every elite club I pulled into, you're not met by a pretty-boy Disneyland greeter, but instead by a row of free buggies. Very few golfers Down Under carry their bag, and caddies appear almost nonexistent. (Motorized carts are discouraged, though sadly they're appearing at more and more courses.) Most of the standard buggies feature a small sand bucket dangling from the center rod for filling divot holes. And when golfers approach the greens, they're encouraged to push the unit right on across. That simple act--which never feels right to an American no matter how many times you do it--toughens and smooths the greens in the thinking of Australian superintendents. And in a practical sense, it saves an immense amount of pushcart time avoiding the annoying circumvention of what Americans coddle: the putting surface. With less of the chemical dependence that can lead to thatch build-up and the need for frequent aerification, it's no coincidence that Australians sport firmer, faster, smoother and more disease-resistant putting surfaces that are a fraction of the American price to build and maintain.
Now, I'm not saying we're going to start doing that everywhere here (or that I ever do it here)… but if your superintendent is up on the current state of his trade, it might be an interesting discussion.
P.S. The caddies at St. Andrews will walk wherever they want. They'll set your bag down off the green but that's because stand bags CAN rip up a green a little. They'll walk across the green with your bag on their backs, though.