Worldwide Handicap Scheme

Worldwide Handicap Scheme

The following is the first of many articles leading up to start date of 2nd November.


What is the WHS.

The new WHS is designed to:

Make handicapping easier to understand

To allow as many golfers as possible the opportunity to:

Obtain and maintain a Handicap Index and reduce barriers of entry

Use the Handicap Index on any golf course around the world

Compete, or play recreationally, fairly, regardless of where they play.

Give all golfers a handicap index that can be transferred from club to club.

The new scheme comes into force on November 2nd.  Between that date and now we will be sending out information that will assist members in the transition.  Much of the information coming out at the moment does not fully involve members but is designed to assist clubs in making sure everything is in place.

You will be hearing a number of general terms regarding handicap and course information. To help with this we hope the following will assist:


A Handicap Index is a number that represents a player’s ability and can be taken and played with on any golf course around the world. It is calculated from the best eight rounds from a players last 20 scores.


A Course Handicap is the number of strokes a player will receive for a specific set of tees on the golf course being played. The Course Handicap converts to a playing handicap for competition purposes.  Tables will be provided for this.


An allowance that is implemented to maintain the integrity of the WHS, when used in competition.

A calculation that is only used for competition purposes

It ensures equity to calculate competition results.

Tables will be provided for this.


 The Course Rating is the measure of playing difficulty from a set of tees when played by a scratch golfer.


The Slope Rating is the number which indicates the relative playing difficulty of a course for bogey golfers, compared to scratch golfers.  It is the difficulty comparison between a bogey player and a scratch player from the same set of tees.

18. 09. 2020.

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