World Handicap System

The World Handicap System came into force in 2020 with the objective of unifying all existing systems into a single system that will:

  • enable golfers of different abilities to play and compete on a fair and equal basis, in any format, on any course, anywhere around the world;
  • be easy to understand and implement, without sacrificing accuracy; and
  • meet the varied needs and expectations of golfers, golf clubs and golf authorities all around the world and be adaptable to suit all golfing cultures.

The WHS will encompass both the Rules of Handicapping and the Course Rating System (formerly known as the USGA Course Rating and Slope System).    

Following transition to the WHS, all Handicap Index calculations will be consistent for all players, making a Handicap Index directly comparable to all other players around the world. 

As of 1st April 2021 members can submit a social score to count towards obtaining and developing your Handicap Index. 

The below information explains when to submit scores to count towards your Handicap Index and how to obtain a full handicap.

How is my handicap made up?

WHS Calculates the average of your best 8 rounds from the last 20 played. There are some automatic adjustments for how the conditions impacted play, similar to the old CSS. WHS also has some limitations on movement and exceptional scores, this is all completed automatically. 

If you have less than 20 rounds then WHS adjusts the calculation. E.G. for the first 8 rounds the average of the best two that count. On this basis it is ideal to aim to submit the 20 scores to obtain a fully developed handicap as soon as possible. The good news is WHS now allows social rounds to count towards your handicap.

Which Scores should be included?

Scores during the active season April to October can be submitted. This is subject to the course qualifying. The ability to declare a round for social scoring will be switched off when this is not the case.

For a score from general play or a social game to be included - that round must be pre-registered (this can be done via the IG App). You will be given the option of selecting the tees you play from and intended number of holes to be played. Simply go to your IG app, click on Handicap Record and then click the menu button in the top right hand corner. This will then allow you to pre register your social game to go towards your Handicap Index.

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How to verify a score?

In order to verify a score and for it to count towards a player’s WHS Handicap Index, some basic rules should be followed:
 1) Play in accordance with The Rules of Golf (No gimmies)

2) Use an authorised format of play – Singles stroke play, Stableford, par/bogey, Maximum score.

3) Play nine holes to post a 9-hole score (all 9 must be played)

4) Play at least 10 holes to post an 18-hole score - If 10-13 holes are played the score of the remaining holes will be net par +1 on first unplayed hole and then net par on the remainder of the unplayed holes and if 14 or more holes have been completed then net par will be the allocated score for all the unplayed holes. 

5) Play with at least one other person

How to submit a score?
After the completion of a competition round, a player has to submit their scorecard as soon as possible in order for their Handicap Index to be updated. Scores should be entered at the venue being played and on the same day, as this will be when a player’s Handicap Index will be updated. This can be done through the IG app or touchscreen (when available).

Cards must also be signed by the marker and posted through the letterbox in the handicaps office. The card needs to have your name date/time of round as well as being fully completed.

No Returns
No returns will be reviewed by the Handicap Committee or its representative. If the reason given for the NR is valid, e.g. an unforeseen illness or injury, then the score will not count towards handicap. Otherwise a penalty will be applied to the player’s handicap.

If you have any questions about the above please contact your handicaps committee on or check out this link for more information

For more information please click where you can find user friendly videos