17 Best Golf Drinking Games Worth Playing

Golf drinking games are a fun way to enhance your time out on the golf course. One study even found that every golfer drinks an estimated 22 gallons of alcohol yearly, highlighting the fun you can have with golf and drinking.

But not all golf drinking game choices are created equal.

Here are the 17 best golf drinking games:

  1. Closest to the Pin
  2. Beer Bogey
  3. Birdie Game
  4. Beer Handicap
  5. Beer Stays In Your Hand
  6. Golf Drinking Card Game
  7. Sand Trap Drinking Game
  8. Get on the Fairway or Drink
  9. Even and Odd
  10. The Drunken Driver
  11. The Mulligans Drinking Game
  12. Drink for Every Shot Over Par
  13. Highest Score Takes a Drink
  14. The Chip-in Game
  15. Drink Before You Tee Off
  16. Tee Box Drinking Game
  17. Fairway Drinking Game

Any serious golf fan won’t want to miss out on a potentially great afternoon, so read the full article. I polled all my golfing buddies with decades of experience and put together this list.

Let’s take a look at 17 of the most fun golf drinking game choices!

17 Best Golf Drinking Games

best golf drinking games
Credit: Jevan Bryant, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

1. Closest to the Pin

I would consider this an awesome game for par-3s. Everyone takes their shot from the tee, and whoever reaches the pin wins.

For everyone else, they need to take a drink. It is important to note that this game has different versions. For example, you might play the game instead where you need to land on the green, or you need to take a drink.

In particular, the second version works best for executive courses using mostly par-3 holes.

Read more: The Best Golf Drinks

2. Beer Bogey

Scored a bogey while playing golf? You may need to lift the cup to your lips and take a drink.

This game is simple. If you scored one under par, you got a bogey and you need to take a drink.

But I’ve known golfers who played this one with tequila. However, you can use whatever your favorite adult beverages are.

3. Birdie Game

When you play the birdie game, every time you score a birdie, everyone else in your group needs to take a drink. Drinking golf games like this could be interesting for the worst golfer in your group!

For the best golfer, you can watch your buddies get inebriated while you keep ahead of them.

Like with all of the games mentioned on this list, you can adjust the game rules according to how you play. For example, if scoring a birdie is a bit hard, you might lower the score requirement for a drink.

4. Beer Handicap

golf drinking game man putting on green golf course

Beer handicap is one of the fun games to play on the course, and it works like this. Throughout the course of the game, you keep score just like you would normally. However, you will drink a beer throughout the game, and for every beer you finish, you can deduct one stroke from the game.

This is one of those games where you probably can’t take your golf game too seriously, but the more you drink, the better your score, with the catch being—as long as you play well while under the influence.

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5. Beer Stays in Your Hand

During this game, your beer must remain in your hand. It’s a fun golf game with your friends because you need to keep holding a beer throughout the round. The rule doesn’t apply only when you go to tee up. If you get caught without a beer in your hand, you need to chug the entire beer.

You can also modify this rule to where you only need to take three sips of the beer. Many choose this route because they don’t want to finish after a few holes and find themselves hammered. That would make for an interesting time on the golf course.

6. Golf Drinking Card Game

Like regular golf, the golf drinking card game sets you up to aim for the lowest score possible. All players will be dealt two cards up and two down during this game.

During the game, they will swap out cards for new ones. You knock whenever you believe you have arrived at the lowest score, meaning everyone else has one more turn to lower their score.

The one with the lowest score never has to drink at the end of the round. Cards are all worth their face value, but Jacks and Queens have a value of 10. An ace has a value of 11, and a King has a value of 0. This game has enough skill to make it worth playing.

7. Sand Trap Drinking Game

Ever hate those dreaded bunker shots? Most golfers hate it, but it’s always to the laughter of their buddies. This drinking game will make it even more fun because now, whenever you hit a sand trap, you take a drink.

For every three swings to get out of the bunker, you take another three drinks. You must chug the whole cup in one version if it takes three swings to leave the bunker. You have another version of this drinking game where you need to take a drink for every shot you take while stuck in the sand trap.

This is similar to the Water Hazard Drinking Game. You can basically add water hazards to the list of things you need to take a drink for as well. This game will give you an extra incentive to pay attention and avoid sand traps whenever possible.

Important to note how you can also choose to make this game lighter. For example, you can lower the alcohol you need if you hit a sand trap. This game is simple, and everyone will understand the rules easily—most golf-drinking games are like that.

Related article: Can You Drink on a Golf Course? Could It Improve Your Game?

8. Get on the Fairway or Drink

golf drinking game
Credit: Gatorfan252525, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Another one of the fun drinking games that forces you to hit on the fairway. If you miss your shot off the fairway, you will need to take a drink. This is similar to the sand trap drinking game, but you need to hit the fairway rather than getting penalized for it like you would with the sand trap game.

I especially like this game with larger groups because watching the people who missed the fairway can be fun.

If you wish to succeed in this game, you need to hit the ball straight to always keep it on the fairway. Unfortunately, the drunker you get, the harder it becomes to do that. This game can be a lot of fun because even when you take your best golfers, they occasionally overshoot or undershoot the fairway, forcing them to drink.

9. Even and Odd

Before beginning the round, you will choose an even or an odd number. Your choice will have nothing to do with the scorecard. Instead, you must take a shot for every even or odd hole.

If you decided to play this game, remember that it tends to work better if you have shot glasses. For that reason, if you want to play even and odd, you may want to keep shot glasses on hand. You can do this with beer instead of liquor, whichever you prefer.

10. The Drunken Driver

You play The Drunken Driver on a par-5 or a par-4 course. First, you tee off at the tee box, but whoever hits it farthest from the hole receives the title “Driver.” From this point on, for every stroke the driver plays, they need to drink until they reach the green.

Let’s say that you took your shots, but your ball didn’t hit the green. You must keep taking shots until you get the golf ball into the hole.

The game will repeat itself once you finish the hole. Now, let’s say someone else arrived at the green before the driver. They will then become the driver, needing to drink, and the person who was the driver before becomes the passenger—they still need to drink.

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11. The Mulligans Drinking Game

Everyone will take a few mulligans every once in a while, and whenever you take a mulligan in this game, you need to take a drink. You either need to down a shot of liquor or drink a cup of beer.

Playing this game helps to keep golfers focused because it ensures that they don’t take mulligans without good reason. We all have that one golfing buddy that takes mulligans way too lightly, and this will step on some of that behavior. If not—bottom’s up, pal!

12. Drink for Every Shot Over Par

Again, this is one of those games that penalize the high-handicap players because, for every shot that you took over par, you need to take a drink for every one of those shots.

As the round progresses, the players will get progressively more inebriated, with the worst players getting even worse. What I like about this game, however, is that it makes the game have more consequences.

If you shoot particularly poorly for a hole, you don’t just take one drink. You will take as many as you went over on par. That can make for an interesting game, with the worst golfers needing to take far more drinks than the best. However, the downside is that the best golfers will be at a much greater advantage with this game.

13. Highest Score Takes a Drink

For this game, whoever has the highest score at the end of the hole needs to take a drink. You have different versions of this game.

For example, let’s say that everyone in the group is already buzzed at the end of nine holes. Instead, you could take a vote to make it the person with the lowest score who needs to take a drink.

Related article: Golf Terms Every Golfer Must Know [Over 250 Terms!]

14. The Chip-in Game

With this fun game, whenever you take a chip shot from the fairway, rough, or fringe into the hole, you win the game. Everyone else in your golf group needs to take a drink.

One of the reasons that people play this game is it can give you extra motivation to start doing chip shots better. It always feels fantastic to get it into the hole from a chip shot.


15. Drink Before You Tee Off

This was one of the most popular drinking games for golfers in college, where you must take a drink before you tee off at every tee box. You do the same thing for every hole.

In this way, every golfer will have drank either 9 or 18 beers by the time they have finished the round. As you can imagine, this is the type of game that you would play if you wanted to party while playing golf.

This wouldn’t make for a great choice for casual golfers or those who want to play a serious round of golf. Your score will be dramatically worse, but you’ll have tons of fun by the end of the game and a hangover tomorrow morning.

16. Tee Box Drinking Game

One fun game that has gained popularity among casual golfers is the Tee Box Drinking Game. Here’s a brief on how it’s played:

  1. First Shot: Every player takes a drink before teeing off. This sets the mood and helps reduce those first-tee jitters.
  2. Water Hazards: If your golf ball lands in the water, take a sip. If you decide to play it from where it lies (yes, in the water), you can assign two drinks to another player.
  3. Sand Bunkers: Get stuck in the sand? That’s a drink. Successfully get out in one shot? Choose another player to take a drink.
  4. Birdies and Bogies: Make a birdie, and every other player rewards you by taking a drink. Make a bogey, and the drink is on you!

This game is not just about the drinks. It’s about the camaraderie, laughter, and unpredictable moments that make the game of golf even more enjoyable. So, the next time you’re out on the course, consider trying it. But always remember to play and drink responsibly!

17. Fairway Drinking Game

Golf, a game of serenity and skill, often offers vast expanses of green known as fairways – the dream landing spot for most drives off the tee. But what if a playful twist is added along with strategizing your shots?

Enter the Fairway Drinking Game. This game spices up the traditional golf round, making each shot on the fairway a potential cause for celebration… or consolation. Here’s how to play:

  1. Fairway Hits: Every time a player lands their ball on the fairway from the tee, other players take a sip. Hit the center of the fairway? That’s two sips for them.
  2. Miss the Fairway: If you miss the fairway, take a drink. If your ball lands in the rough, two sips. If it goes out of bounds or into a water hazard directly from the tee shot, finish your drink.
  3. The Longest Drive: On par 5s, the player with the longest drive that remains on the fairway can choose another player to finish their drink.
  4. Fairway Bunkers: If your ball, while on the fairway, rolls into a fairway bunker on your second shot or beyond, take two sips.
  5. Green in Regulation (GIR): If someone makes a GIR (landing the ball on the green in 2 shots on a par 4, for example), others take a drink. Miss a GIR? Drink up!

Related article: Golf Slang 101: Master the Lingo of the Game

Final Thoughts

Hopefully, you found a great golf drinking game that suits your taste. I’d recommend trying out a couple of them to see which ones you like the most. Many people take golf too seriously to drink while playing the game.

Because of that, you often find that they won’t drink while they play the game. Instead, they have what they call the 19th hole, where you head to the bar or pub and have a few drinks after a great round.

Either way, there’s a place for golf drinking games at least everyone once in awhile. Just be sure to drink responsibly!

Matt travels the world as a professional writer and blogger trying out different golf courses in exotic spots like the Philippines. He loves the challenge and tranquility in the sport of golf. Golf, for him, is a way of relaxing and enjoying life. You can connect with him on LinkedIn.

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