EVERY golfer dreams of teeing it up at Augusta National.
And it is not impossible.
We've taken a look at all the ways you can do it…
1. Become a member
Augusta National only has 300 members but if you think there’s a chance of joining, we’ve got some bad news for you.
It’s virtually impossible. The general rule of thumb is that if you have to ask about becoming a member then you’re probably not welcome.
In other words, it’s strictly by invitation only and those invites only tend to go out when a membership lapses i.e. when someone dies.
Do you have to be minted to join?
Not necessarily, although when you consider that some of the current members include billionaires like Microsoft founder Bill Gates and the investor Warren Buffett, it clearly helps.
And you don’t have to be that good at golf either.
According to one caddie, the average handicap is around the 15 mark.
Previously women were not permitted to become members but they bowed to public pressure in 2012 and accepted their first two female members at Augusta, former US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and the billionaire investor Darla Moore.
So how much does it cost to join?
Well, it’s thought that while it’s expensive – the initial fee is said to be between £19,000 and £30,000 – it’s nowhere near the most expensive golf club in the world.
Factor in subscription fees of around £230 a month and you’ll see that it’s pretty good value compared to other, less exclusive clubs.
2. Be invited by a member
This is your best chance, as long as you know one of the members and they sign you in as a guest.
But the Augusta National’s membership policy is a closely guarded secret – so finding a member who will invite you is not as easy as it sounds.
The good news is that any guest expense gets billed to the member.
And the member does not have to play with his/her guests, but does have to be on the property.
August National treasures
FAMOUS members of the exclusive Augusta National Golf Club include:
Bill Gates: Founder of Microsoft, worth £76bn
Warren Buffett: Business investor, worth £67bn
Condoleezza Rice: Ex-US Secretary of State
Roger Goodell: NFL boss
Jerry Yang: Former CEO of Yahoo
Michael Bonallack: Ex-captain of the R&A
Jack Nicklaus: Six-time Masters champion and 18-time major winner
3. Work as a volunteer
Though it’s never been confirmed by Augusta, it’s believed that if you volunteer to work at the Masters in April you’re entitled to come back a month later and play a round at Augusta.
That’s play a round, not play around.
That’ll just get you thrown out.
The Masters this year has been pushed back to the autumn due to coronavirus as Tiger Woods looks to defend his crown.
4. Win the media lottery
Getting media accreditation for The Masters is hard enough itself, but not impossible (The Sun was given one pass later year, for lucky golf correspondent David Facey).
Then on arrival at Augusta, all media are invited to enter the media ballot.
If you come out of the hat, you'll be one of about 20 media members allowed to play Augusta National on the Monday following the Masters.
5. Play college golf nearby
Aside from being able to boast that you're a high-level college golfer, one of the perks of going to nearby Augusta University is that once a year the golf team will be invited to play.
But the chances of getting into the university, making the golf team etc are nigh on impossible.
6. Write a book
They say everyone has a book in them, and if you get a game at Augusta out of it too, then even better.
If you can convince the Augusta National to officially sanction your opus, you may be able to play the course… for research purposes, of course.
Author David Owen, who wrote The Making of The Masters, revealed he was once playing Augusta when one of his group desperately needed to finish, so they skipped the famous Amen Corner holes.
He said: "By that point I'd played there so often that I didn't think anything of it."
7. Become a caddie
If you fancy hanging out in white overalls, carrying a golf bag, this could be the job for you.
And you get to play the course once a year.
8. Get some other job at Augusta National
Augusta National advertise online for green keepers, admin staff and other jobs.
If you get through the selection process, you'll be eligible to play the course once a year.
But don’t turn up in the summer and expect to play.
The course closes in late May, after the Masters, and doesn’t open again until October.
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