Three ways to get on Bethpage Black — without sleeping in your car.
1. PHONE A FRIEND who is a NY state resident Bethpage uses an automated tee-time reservation system (516-249-0707; registration required). New York State residents can reserve times up to seven days in advance; out-of-staters have a two-day window. “It’s a huge advantage to know someone from New York [state],” Only one person in your group has to be from the Empire State, “so if your best friend from kindergarten lives in Queens, have him call!” When calling, persistence is key. New tee times, released daily at 7pm, vanish in minutes. “Most guys give up by 7:15, but the trick is to call and call, everyday all the time looking for cancellations. Call on your lunch break, at midnight, when you wake up at 2am to pee. It’s the Black course and it’s worth the effort.
2. WALK ON Weekdays are best for walk-ons. “You will get out as a single. Twosomes have a 50-50 shot. A foursome? About 10 percent. People cancel or run late and their tee time will be released automatically if its not claim an hour before their reserved time. Arrive early and check the TV monitor that shows the next open time. “It might be at 3pm, which is a long wait, but at minimum you can grab that. Keep watching the screen — a prime slot might cancel, and it’s yours. Forget weekends and major holidays.
3. PONY UP NY Golf Shuttle will secure your tee time and provide round-trip transport (assuming a Manhattan pickup) $500 per person (includes greens fee and round-trip transport from Manhattan) hassle-free, stress-free and well rested for some punishment sure to come.