3 essential travel tips from 3 well-traveled pro caddies
Sean Zak, Zephyr Melton and Jessica Marksbury
It wasn’t long ago that people thought golfers weren’t athletes. Ditto the outdated notion that all caddies are slackers, smokers and scofflaws. Get real. The men and women in smocks today are more essential to the pro game than ever. Part stats nerd, part guru, part pack mule and therapist, a typical looper is both at the center of the action and a side player. What follows this week (and in the Jan./Feb. pages of GOLF Magazine) is a snapshot of the life — and loads of intel for your game.
ICYMI: 9 essential lessons every caddie learns, according to a pro caddie
ICYMI: 10 things a pro caddie would tell you about YOUR game
ICYMI: Joe LaCava opens up on what it takes to carry the bag for the game’s greats
ICYMI: 3 drills to improve your game, according to pro caddies
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3 essential travel tips
Whoever coined the saying “It’s the going, not the getting there, that’s good” definitely wasn’t a caddie. When you spend as much time crisscrossing the globe as these guys do, you’ll unquestionably have developed stratagems and strange techniques for getting around.
1. Make the most of your aerobes
Out here on tour, it’s not unusual for a caddie to sleep on an air mattress, but you’ve got to know how to make them comfortable. Always make sure they’re inflated to the max. There’s a good chance it’ll be deflated by the time you wake up, but you’ve got to keep it inflated as long as you can. Oh, and bringing a pillow you like is another good bet. —Nate Blasko, Hannah Green’s caddie
2. Longing for legroom? Go Southwest
I fly Southwest a lot. I know some people might not like that. But I’m pretty tall — six-five — so if I’m not flying first class it’s Southwest, , because all their seats are the same. You don’t need an upgrade to get three more inches. —Rich Mayo, Ernie Els’ caddie
3. Do not check a bag!
As a traveling caddie, I haven’t checked a bag in 23 years. I got this duffel from L.L. Bean that is everything — a soft shell without wheels, so it fits in every single plane American Airlines has. I can pack two weeks of shorts and golf shirts, a couple pairs of jeans and that’s all I need. After two weeks on the road, I’ll find a place to do laundry. But mostly, I’m never under the control of the airlines. I’m off that plane and outta there. I figure over the course of 23 years I’ve saved about two years of time not waiting in baggage claim. Saving time — that’s all I care about. —Jeff Willett, Kevin Kisner’s caddie
By: Sean Zak, Zephyr Melton and Jessica Marksbury February 3, 2024 Caddies — like their pro golfer bosses — are road warriors. Getty Images It wasn’t long ago that people thought golfers weren’t athletes. Ditto the outdated notion that all caddies are slackers, smokers and scofflaws. Get real. The men and women in smocks today…