The Masters Tournament is a one of the most historical, prestigious, and special golf tournaments in the world. Every professional and amateur golfer wants the Green Jacket, every patron (that’s what they call the fans there, by the way) wants to experience the pristine grounds, to be in the midst of the roar of the crowd whilst following their favorite golfer. It’s also a singularly unique place, in every way. There are certain protocols in place that patrons need to keep in mind when they enter the tournament’s hallowed grounds. Here are some tips to keep you in the know and make your experience at the Masters even better!
8 Tips for Attending The Masters Tournament
1) The first and most important tip for attending the Masters is: Follow the etiquette rules or you will be kicked out and your badge revoked. I am not kidding you. So, if you got a ticket “from a friend” or were even one of the lucky ones to get it in the ticket lottery, that original badge owner will never get their tickets back. Rude or loud behavior is not tolerated. No running, and no cell phones allowed, which lead me to #2.
2) NO CELL PHONES, don’t even try to bring it with you on Thursday through Sunday. Don’t try to sneak one in, they will find it, no cameras no video equipment, nothing. It is very difficult to be without your phone, I get it, but wear a smart watch so at least if you lose your person or group, you can somewhat communicate. It is a bit of a bummer because you want to document your exceptional experience, but it keeps you in the moment! Leave it at your hotel or your Airbnb. You do have the option to check it as soon as you enter the gates, but the lines are 1 -2 hours long to pick it up at the end of your day. And you can’t even get a picture of the clubhouse or the grounds because as soon as you enter the North Gate you will immediately see the cell phone check. If you are caught, you will be escorted out and never be allowed back. The good news is there are hard line telephones around the course so if you must check in with someone you can call out. If you are there for the practice rounds earlier in the week, they allow cameras and phones so you can get photos in front of the clubhouse and the grounds!
3) You can only buy Masters merch at the Masters. You can’t buy authentic anything Masters-related on line. The famous Gnomes are resold for $500-$1000 on eBay. So be prepared the first day you attend, whether is it for the practice rounds or Thursday through Sunday, go to the main pro shop the first day and stock up. Go as soon as the gates open at 7:30am to get in line. There is a shipping line after you leave the merch area to send your items home, but that line is brutally long. You are able to exit the grounds and re-enter to bring your over filled bags to your car, but it is a 20/30-minute walk in and out so I would suggest only do it one day. If you can’t get to the merch area early, no worries, grab a drink, wait in line, enjoy the grounds, and take it all in! The customer service is phenomenal and there are plenty of friendly staff to help you navigate and find what you are looking for. Buy hats for all your golf buddies, family, and friends. Having Master’s merch is a treasure!
4) Buy a Master’s chair the first day because they don’t allow other colored chairs Thursday through Sunday for the aesthetics of the broadcast feeds. If you plan on sitting at a hole, buy your chair, bring a business card (they have inserts on the chairs for them) and set it up on the hole you want to eventually end up at after you walk the entire course – which is a must by the way. Don’t worry, no one will move your chair, no one will steal your chair if you have it marked with your business card.
5) Traffic is not easy getting in or out of the area. I would suggest a shuttle service or an Uber that can drop you off at a certain area outside the parking area and walk the half mile to the entrance area. Now, this doesn’t help with your merchandise situation (bringing it back to your vehicle and re-entering, see tip #3) but at least you won’t be waiting to get out. Augusta National has done an amazing job with the parking situation though, so there is parking available. Get a pass ahead of time if you desire, but perhaps bring your car the day you plan on getting your merchandise so you can walk in and out that particular day.
Plan this Tip for Attending the Masters a Year in Advance
6) Where to stay Augusta. I would plan a year ahead and get an Airbnb. The hotel situation is not the greatest. There are many services that can help you with getting accommodations. Many stay at the Ritz Carlton an hour away in Lake Oconee and take their shuttle in. We were lucky to rent a home 15 minutes away from the course!
7) If you are wondering where to set up your chair and create a home base on the course, here are a few suggestions. If you’re not into the 18th green idea, there are a few other favorite spots. If you are lucky enough to attend all four days it’s worth prioritizing the tee off spot at Hole #1 and the 18th green on one of your days there. Personally, I love setting up just behind the 12th tee. You will be able to see players putt out on 11, play the 12th, and then tee-off on the 13th. It’s the Amen corner so it is popular, but so worth it!
8) A few random tips. You can bring a bag in. No bigger than 18x18x10. A small backpack or a cross body is ideal. Bring sunscreen, a water bottle, layers of clothes, binoculars, a small umbrella for shade and homemade wrapped snacks if you have dietary restrictions. Also, you would never expect it, but eating and drinking at The Masters is super affordable. There are bananas, a fruit cup, chips, peanuts, chocolate cookies, four different sandwiches: pimento cheese, egg salad, chicken biscuit and bbq pork. They have bottled water, sodas, lemonade, coffee, beer, white wine, and a signature cocktail. Every concession stand is identical, and the lines move quickly. I ate a few bananas a day, people in my group loved the sandwiches. Bathrooms are located near every concession. There are five or six locations throughout the course.
I truly hope this blog and its tips make your time at The Masters at Augusta National a little easier and answers some of your FAQs. It’s truly an incredible experience and a once in a lifetime bucket list trip!