One of Gary Leff’s readers at View from the Wing brings us a fantastic deal if it works as advertised. The short version of the story: for $50 per month, you get free golf, free club borrowing, a couple of free meals a month (excluding alcohol/gratuity), and a number of other interesting benefits. This deal could be particularly intriguing for those losing the free golf benefit from the Citi Prestige card next month.
As explained in Gary’s post, this deal is a membership in something called ClubCorp Travel. ClubCorp is apparently a company that owns a number of golf/country clubs around the country and in several countries around the world. The key restriction is that you get the free benefits only when traveling more then 100 miles from home — meaning that you can’t play your home course or eat in your hometown for free. That said, if you travel regularly and you golf, the combination of dinner and golf benefits could easily eclipse $50 a month. According VFTW, members enjoy these benefits:
– 2 waived green fees per month, per club*
– Free club borrowing
– 2 “free” four-course meals per month, per club* (actually, there’s a 20% service charge – but still a great deal)
– Access to any of their business clubs
– Free use of fitness facilities
– Several different types of discounts at third party vendors
– Plus other benes
* – at any club not within 100 miles of your home
You can check states/cities to see available benefits at this link.
As an example, here was a course that came up in New York — note that this is not at all near New York City, it’s actually decently far out in Suffolk County on Long Island:
And here is a restaurant in New York City called Le Cirque. While I’ve never dined there and can’t speak to the quality, main courses on the a la carte menu start at $42. As a member, you and your spouse would each get a 2-course menu (not a la carte, you must choose from the prix fixe menu) for free at this particular restaurant (you pay alcohol / gratuity)
If you’ve got a trip to Las Vegas planned, free tickets to the Gospel Brunch at House of Blues is a nice value (normally $54.50 per adult). This isn’t the only House of Blues location I saw while browsing different areas.
Are there restrictions?
I’m sure there are. I definitely didn’t dig into this far enough to know where the catch is — but I would do some more research if you’re interested. One thing I did notice in the membership terms is this: it notes that if you cancel before your 12-month membership is up, they will charge a $250 early cancellation fee. Be aware that you can’t sign up for a month or two and then cancel without being charged.
It looks like membership includes you, your spouse, and children according to terms from the sign-up form:
ClubCorp Travel benefits are available to you and your immediate family. Immediate family defined as spouse, and dependents who are unmarried children under 21 (or between 21 and 23 attending college full time) residing with Candidate.
It states that membership normally requires a $1,000 initiation fee, but that fee is currently waived when signing up online.
This looks like a great deal if you travel and golf/dine. Note that not all listed cities have golf clubs and not all restaurants listed include free dining. Still, there are enough locations to probably get well beyond $600 a year in value and there is some variety in addition to golf/dining (such as sports clubs with swimming/tennis/etc). Check out Gary’s post with more information from his reader (and the comments for some experiences from current members).