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Hole in One Insurance

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 

Just in case you get one!

 

http://www.neatorama.com/2014/07/26/Golfers-Buy-Insurance-Against-Sinking-a-Hole-in-One/#!bnUBDw

 

It's not easy to hit a golf ball several hundred yards and have it land neatly in a cup 4.25 inches in diameter. But, sadly, some golfers do experience this problem.

Yes, that's right: hitting a hole-in-one can be a bad thing.

That's because in some golfing cultures, particularly Japan the the UK, golfers who sink a ball in one shot are expected to throw a party. They should, at minimum, treat everyone in their group to drinks back at the clubhouse. In more extreme cases, social standards compel successful golfers to host lavish celebrations costing thousands of dollars.

That's why some golfers purchase insurance to protect themselves from an unfortunate hole-in-one. Alex Mayyasi writes for Priceconomics:

 

After spending $650 buying the entire clubhouse champagne at England’s South Winchester Golf Club following a hole in one, Paul Neilson told Bloomberg, “I couldn't afford to go through all that again. I used to have a policy but never got around to renewing it.” Among the stories from Japan, the same article quotes Eiji Yoneda, who was one of 200 people invited on a dinner cruise by someone celebrating a hole in one.

A number of firms offer hole in one insurance, frequently bundled with other services that golfers commonly buy like insurance for golfing equipment or personal liability. (Apparently yelling “Fore!” can’t ward off lawsuits if you hit a ball right at someone.) Golfplan, a U.K. insurer, covers $340 to $510 worth of drinks for hole in one celebrations. (Clubs’ set of rules for validating a hole in one makes it easier to process claims.) When it is sold unbundled, hole in one insurance can be cheap; Tokio Marine & Nichido Fire Insurance Co. Ltd offers Japanese golfers hole in one insurance for as little as a $3 premium. Outside of individual policies, golf tournaments also get hole in one insurance so that they can offer huge cash prizes for a hole in one as a marketing promotion -- it's the same type of "prize indemnity" insurance that covers teams when a fan sinks a half court shot or makes a field goal.

post #2 of 12

A guy in my club used to live in Southern California, where a rich guy he knew paid his way into some big-time pro-am at a high-end country club. The guy just happened to make one of his eight career aces during that round, and his playing partners -- none of whom he knew beforehand and none of whom knew the rich guy who'd sponsored him -- talked the rest of the day how they were all going to party it up after the round. The rich guy did not play in the pro-am and was not on the premises.

 

There's no way the guy could've afforded what it was going to cost him. So when they got back to the clubhouse and split up to load their stuff into their cars, he just fired up his engine and jetted out of there. He never again saw any of the people who knew he'd made that ace.

post #3 of 12
I never understood this particular custom. I'm not sure I'd observe it if I hit a hole in one.
post #4 of 12

At the club where I played and caddied as a teenager, they had "hole in one insurance"- basically each of the members paid ~$5 a month and everyone got free drinks for the day whenever anyone had a hole in one.  (Sometimes, to generate more bar business, they would reschedule hole in ones if someone got one really late in the day, or when the bar was closed).

 

Apparently, at least for a while, you could opt out of the insurance.  One well known insurance agent did this and when he got a hole in one, the local paper(s) carried a story with a headline to the effect "Insurance Agent Has No Insurance, Pays $______"

post #5 of 12
I would buy the group I'm playing with cokes or some other soft drink... Or maybe a round of coffee! Wait, now that I think of it... I didn't buy anything when I hit my hole in one, but I remember my boss (who lived in England) telling me at work that I owe them lunch, maybe that is the proto call there! (Didn't do that either)

;)
post #6 of 12
I always thought the etiquette was to buy a drink for those in the clubhouse when you got in, but I can understand situations where that is simply impossible. I played in a tournament where someone got a hole in one in my group and our group kidded him about buying all the competitors (we were the second to last group) a soda. It obviously didn't happen, but it was funny to joke about.
post #7 of 12

Not a chance in the world that I'd buy for the house, except in a case like my first one.  That was during the club championship, earned me half of a $2400 pot (two of aced the same hole the same day), and I split the cost of a keg with the other guy, and only for the guys in the tournament, many of whom had already left the course by the time I made it.  

 

The second one I made I didn't even have to buy for the couple I was playing with.  We finished at 11 AM, and all they wanted was a Coke.  :smartass: 

post #8 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by MEfree View Post
 

At the club where I played and caddied as a teenager, they had "hole in one insurance"- basically each of the members paid ~$5 a month and everyone got free drinks for the day whenever anyone had a hole in one.  (Sometimes, to generate more bar business, they would reschedule hole in ones if someone got one really late in the day, or when the bar was closed).

 

Apparently, at least for a while, you could opt out of the insurance.  One well known insurance agent did this and when he got a hole in one, the local paper(s) carried a story with a headline to the effect "Insurance Agent Has No Insurance, Pays $______"

When I belonged to a private club in the 1990s, we had a Hole In One fund too.   The only differences is we only kicked in $1 or $2 and this covered a player for the entire year.  It was either that, or until an ace was made....(cant remember for sure)   Every member I knew participated in the fund.  If you made an ACE, it covered a round for the house.  To receive the free drink, you had to be present in the Grill Room or eating in the adjacent dining area at the time we finished our round and made the initial drink order.   Late arrivals don't get a free drink.......

 

Depending on the time of day of the ace, the grill room and dining area may be fairly empty.   One of my playing partners made an ace during a pot game so the grill room was pretty crowded when we finished, and his bar bill was only about $400.   If you have an early tee time, the place may be nearly empty when you complete the round!! ...aside from a few people making the turn as your group finishes. 

post #9 of 12
I've never had a hole in one but have had two in my group. In both cases, I bought the guy a drink. Being penalized for a hole in one is a stupid custom. In bowling, when a guy throws a 300 game he gets the drinks bought for him. I threw one 300 in my career and had them lined up all night. Now that's a good custom. a1_smile.gif
post #10 of 12

I'm sure I would buy a round for my group, but it does seem rather backwards.

post #11 of 12
The tradition here is that one buys a drink for whoever is in the bar at the end of the round. But since that can get expensive on busy days, it's usually modified. At my club the guy who makes the ace asks for a bottle of scotch to be put on the bar, and everyone who wants one helpsthemselves to a shot - or two. If he's a member, he then replaces the bottle (thus ensuring he doesn't have to pay over-the-bar prices) next time he comes in.

It's a reasonable system. Bad luck on anyone present who doesn't like scotch, but hey - you can't have everything.
post #12 of 12

Traditionally, whoever gets the ace, buys drinks for the house.  At my buddy's club, they'll even let the cart girl know and capture the guys on the course as well.  He pays a couple of bucks per month for $1,000 insurance, and still had to dig into his wallet for another $600 for his last ace.  Tough crowd there!

 

I've never had one, but if I ever do, my credit card will go down on the bar, and I'll be happy to celebrate with the entire crowd!  :beer: 

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by chasm View Post

The tradition here is that one buys a drink for whoever is in the bar at the end of the round. But since that can get expensive on busy days, it's usually modified. At my club the guy who makes the ace asks for a bottle of scotch to be put on the bar, and everyone who wants one helpsthemselves to a shot - or two. If he's a member, he then replaces the bottle (thus ensuring he doesn't have to pay over-the-bar prices) next time he comes in.

It's a reasonable system. Bad luck on anyone present who doesn't like scotch, but hey - you can't have everything.

 

There are people who don't like scotch?!   :-O

 

Good system there.  Kudos to the club for supporting it!

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