Pick an off day.

Peak course hours are Saturday and Sunday mornings, but courses usually discount rates during weekdays, early-bird hours and twilight.

Take a walk.

Some courses require a cart to speed up play. Pick one where you can carry your bag, saving between $5 and $15 a round.

Find coupons.

Many spots offer unique specials to attract new players. At Columbus municipal courses, for example, you get a buy-one-get-one coupon on your birthday.

Become a member.

If you're close to a course and in for the long haul, membership to a semi-private club can be a bargain. Bent Tree Golf Club in Sunbury, for example, provides unlimited greens fees and driving-range access for $1,300 a season.

Befriend the wealthy.

There's nothing like a round at a swanky private club, followed by a steak lunch. So if you see Jack Nicklaus changing a tire on the side of the road, stop and help.