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October 2021 National Rounds Played Report

October rounds-played almost matched the late-season surges seen in 2020, finishing just 1.8% shy of the trajectory from a year ago. October 2020 rounds had been up 32% over the previous year, per the monthly report produced by Golf Datatech, which incorporates facility data gathered by NGF.

It’s been expected that play in recent months would fall short of 2020’s post-pandemic pace, but total rounds year-to-date remain up 7.4% with only two of the lower-volume months still outstanding.

The overall 2021 increase has been driven by the significant jumps in April (+81%) and May (+18%), advances that were anticipated given that almost 20 million spring rounds were lost in 2020 due to coronavirus-related shutdowns and limitations. After June 2021 rounds were pretty much equal to 2020, rounds have retreated a bit given the added competition for discretionary time and money, with other activities and travel back in the mix for many.

The play numbers have dipped slightly through the summer and fall, but it’s important to keep those in perspective of the unique increases in 2020:

  • July 2021 (-3.9%)      vs     July 2020 (+19.7%)
  • August 2021 (-7.3%)     vs     August 2020 (+20.6%)
  • September 2021 (-8%)     vs     September 2020 (+25.5%)

In 2020, the momentum remained strong through the end of the year. November 2020 rounds were up almost 57% compared the year prior, with the total national volume almost matching that from October, and December rounds were up 37% year-over-year.

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