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The Best Golf GPS Watches for 2019: Buying Guide Review

With advancement in technology, golf gps watches and activity tracking devices like the Apple Watch are affordable for golfers to use in their everyday lives.

In today’s review guide, we will outline the best golf gps watches you can buy in 2019 and they are not ranked in any particular order but scroll to watches that fit your budget and start there by looking at the price in the “What to Know” section of each golf watch review.

You can also check out these reviews and don’t forget to share them via the social buttons!

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Why Should You Buy a Golf GPS Watch?

Golf watches are great devices for getting yardage information during your round of golf, acting like a rangefinder but conveniently located on your wrist for easy data access.

You can quickly know the approximate distance to the front, center, and back of the green to help you make smarter club selection decisions.

Knowing how far you need to carry the ball to land it on the green can change your perspective of course strategy.

Instead of trying to hit 150 yards to the flag, you know if you hit it 145 yards it should land on the front of the green which your gps watch says is 142 yards away. Then watch the ball roll an additional 5 yards hopefully but worst case you have an easy uphill putt by being short of the flag instead of long.

Do Apple Watches Have Golf GPS Capabilities?

Yes, Apple watches have a GPS sensor which allows you to connect with most Golf GPS Apps.

  • Golf GPS (Free, in-app purchases) For iPhone and Apple Watch.
  • Hole19 Golf GPS & Scoring App (Free) For iPhone and Apple Watch.
  • Golfshot: Golf GPS + Scorecard (Free, in-app purchases)
  • GolfLogix GPS + Putt Breaks (Free, in-app purchases)
  • Golf Pad: Free golf GPS (Free, in-app purchases)

Will a Golf GPS Watch Help My Swing?

As far as fixing a slice or hook in your golf swing, a golf gps watch will not be the answer that solves a swing fault.

You’ll need to see a swing coach professional or video tape your swing and study it to understand what movements you’re making that is getting the club path and face out of whack, causing your mishits.

However, a GPS Golf Watch can serve your golf swing by knowing the proper distances.

Instead of making a full wedge swing, you’ll know you need to take some power off thanks to the accurate distance the GPS watch provides, which can now save you several feet on the putting greens, giving you a closer chance at birdie or par.

Are there Affordable Golf GPS Watches to Buy?

Certainly! We cover a wide variety of price ranges below including affordable gps watches so you can pick out the style, color, and budget friendly golf watch that fits your needs.

You can find watches as low as $70 on Amazon like this Izzo Swami GPS band which is on sale 30% OFF from $99 to $69 at the time of writing this article.

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Top 10 Best Golf Watches with GPS Capabilities

1. Hole 19 + Apple Watch/Wear OS

If you own an Apple Watch 2 or higher, you can turn it into a Golf GPS watch by connecting it to the Hole 19 Golf App. Here is the latest Apple Watch, the Series 4.

apple watch 4 golf

What to Know:

  • It’s free, if you own a smartwatch
  • No need for dedicated device
  • Still need your phone for hole maps
  • Lacks automatic shot tracking

Hole 19 is a free app for Apple Watch and Wear OS that replicates many of the features you’ll find on golf wearables.

The free golf app uses the built in GPS of the Apple Watch Series 4 to track distances off the tee and to the pin saving you time from having to pull out your phone from your golf bag.

You can also add your strokes, putts and fairways made and sync it back to the companion smartphone app. We also love that the Hole 19 app offers flyover views of holes, a full digital scorecard and the ability to book a round on your favorite course.

Click to buy the Apple Watch on Amazon

2. Garmin Approach S20

We’ve previously written a detailed review of the Garmin Approach S20 golf watch you can read here if you want a full review of all the features and technology that comes packed in this golf GPS watch.

 

garmin approach s20 golf watch

What to Know:

  • Price: $149.00 (check price on Amazon)
  • Automatic shot tracking for post round analysis on the app
  • Over 41,000 golf courses
  • Green view display to see shapes of greens in real time
  • Distances to front/back/center and hazards
  • Smartphone notifications
  • Doubles as a fitness watch too
  • Garmin Connect Golf Community
  • Colors: White/Charcoal/Blue

With the Garmin Approach S20, you now have a smart watch on your wrist that acts as a wireless extension of your smart phone. It’s high resolution display will light up, sharing notifications of texts, emails, or alerts thanks to the Bluetooth technology.

Your Approach S20 watch features a lithium ion battery that can last 15 hours in full GPS mode before it will need to recharge.

One of the cool bonus features of the Garmin Approach S20 golf watch is that it also has a built in odometer. This allows you to track your steps, calories burned, distance and time of day, plus it monitors hours of sleep.

It includes hazard information, green details and AutoShot tracking for tee and fairway shots, and is also much cheaper than the Garmin X40.

Once you’re done with your round of golf, simply save it and connect it with the Garmin Connect app on your smart phone. Then upload it and share it with your golfing buddies online.

Click here to buy on Amazon

3. Garmin Approach X40 GPS Watch

The Garmin Approach X40 is a step up from the S20 in price and below we will share the various features that may be worth the upgrade if you’d prefer the X40 to the Approach S20.

garmin approach x40 golf watch (1)

What to Know:

  • Price: $214.00 (check price on Amazon)
  • High sensitivity GPS receiver show distance to greens, hazards and doglegs
  • Auto shot tracking for post round analysis
  • 24/7 heart rate monitoring
  • Activity tracking with reminders
  • Display size: 1. 00 x 0. 42 Inches
  • Battery life up to 5 days in activity mode; up to 10 hours in GPS mode
  • Regular: 5. 4”-7. 6” (136-192 mm) circumference
  • X-large: 7. 1″-8. 8″ (180-224 mm) circumference
  • Colors: Black, White, Frost Blue, Limelight

The big difference is this version includes a heart rate sensor, so you can monitor your pulse under pressure, and a step/distance/calorie tracker so you can justify playing golf as exercise multiple times per week.

It’s pre-loaded with 40,000 golf courses worldwide and the GPS will give you a precise distance to the front/pin/back of the green.

Want to track your drives and iron shots? Done.

It does so automatically which allows you to track performance over time and see patterns in your game. Get precise distance averages for your clubs to make better club selection choices.

Despite the slim band-like display, it will still deliver green shape and layout data, allowing you to perfectly plan your approach shots. It also shows you a club choice for the distance you have to assist you like a smart caddy.

Auto shot round analyzer measures shot distances with auto-recording for post-round analysis and is synced back to the powerful Garmin Connect Golf app via Bluetooth.

Click here to buy on Amazon

4. Garmin Approach S6 Golf Watch

A top-end watch with a wealth of apps, you’ll love the Garmin Approach S6. It’s stylish design includes a round display and comfortable rubber wristband that come in white, black, and orange.

garmin s6 golf gps watch

What to Know:

  • Price: $293.00 (check price on Amazon)
  • Multiple Apps Connect with the Watch
  • Green View with Manual Pin Positioning
  • Yardages to Front, Back, & Middle of Green
  • Measures Shot Distances & Layup/Dogleg Distances
  • Golf Round Timer
  • Can’t View Scorecard on the Watch
  • Colors: Light, Dark, Orange

When it comes to geolocation, Garmin is at the top of its game, with years of experience in military and nautical applications, so a golf course is easy pickings.

Consider this golf watch the older brother of the Garmin S20 and X40 as it comes with a much more expensive price tag.

Over 40,000 courses with free updates are logged, with ‘course view’ and ‘green view’. This watch will use motion sensors to measure your stroke and offer tips for improvement.

Battery life is very long as it goes a hefty 20 weeks between charges, or 10 hours in GPS mode.

The Garmin IQ store has thousands of apps built specifically for golfing-related tasks. For example you can use: SwingStrength – SwingTempo – TempoTraining – PinPointer – Handicap Scoring

Click here to buy on Amazon

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5. TomTom Golfer 2 Golf Watch

The TomTom Golfer 2 is both a golf watch and app combo device. The TomTom Golfer 2 GPS Watch shows you the best approach to the green, avoiding all hazards on over 40,000 courses worldwide.

tomtom golf gps

What to Know:

  • Price: $318.00 (Check prices on Amazon)
  • Hazards & Green Distances
  • Automatic Shot Detection
  • Post-game Analysis with TomTom Golfer App
  • Automatic Scorecard
  • 40,000 Courses Preloaded
  • 24/7 Activity Tracking
  • Premium Strap
  • Colors: Black, Light Gray

A prime offering of the TomTom Golfer 2 is analysis of game data using the MySports app. This app lets you review shot patterns, so you can see if you’re missing fairways to the left more than the right.

You can also compare the same hole across different rounds of the 40,000 stored courses.

Improve your game, round after round.  Now with automatic shot detection and post-game analysis you can drive your game to the next level.

Click here to buy on Amazon

6. SkyCaddie Linx GT GPS Watch

The SkyCaddie Linx GT golf gps watch comes packed with best-in-class pre-loaded golf courses and powerful, yet easy-to-use features to save strokes and improve your game.

They claim to have more accurate distances than other golf watches. If you use SkyCaddie® Mobile, a synchronized companion app, you can get vivid HD views of the entire golf hole when you need more information to save you strokes.

skycaddie linx gt watch

What to Know:

  • Price: $149.00 (check price on Amazon)
  • Preloaded Courses
  • GPS Watch & App
  • Multi-Sport
  • SmartTag™ Ready
  • The SkyCaddie Linx GT is one of a kind in that it’s not just a wearable, but part of a package.
  • Colors: White, Black

As with all other golf GPS watches, the Linx GT measures accurate distances to the hole from any location you’re standing on the golf course as well as distances to front, back, hazards, doglegs. You can also track individual shot distances.

The club sensor it comes with can help you analyze each golf swing with great accuracy to help you make swing improvements too.

The built-in SmartTag reader provides hassle-free club tracking. SmartTags can be added to each of your clubs. By adding tags to other clubs, you can get the results for each club to improve your game.

Tagging after each golf shot captures your distance, your club name and the location of each shot.

SkyLink’s simple one-touch editing tool allows you to add the club used later in just couple of minutes in the 19th hole or at home.

In one streamlined featherlight design, you get a rangefinder watch, game tracker, Cloud service for post-round analysis, and app when more is needed during or after play.

And it’s not limited to golf. With step, distance and calorie tracking this golf watch also doubles as a fitness watch allowing you to track basic fitness features to get in better shape!

Click here to buy on Amazon

7. Golf Buddy WTX GPS Watch

This golf smartwatch with 38,000 courses and counting has an array of advanced features not offered on most golf watches making it a possible information overkill for most amateur golfers.

But if you love stats and trying to improve round after round, the Golf Buddy WTX may be the GPS watch for you.

golf buddy wtx gps watch

What to Know:

  • Price: $179.00 (Check price on Amazon)
  • Simple and fast touch user interface
  • Course update with GolfBuddy Smartphone App.
  • Notification sync with Smartphone
  • Distances to front/center/back of the green and to hazards
  • Dynamic green view and distance readings from the golfer’s position
  • Dual green distances display
  • Shot distance measurement
  • Activity tracking on the Pedometer
  • Rechargeable lithium-ion battery, 8 hours in GPS mode
  • Colors: Black & White

With a highly visible, raise-to-wake colour screen, turn the WTX on and the display shows the time clearly. Click the top right button and you enter the menu for all the other possible modes, after which you use the touchscreen to control the menu.

You’ll love the powerful GPS, distance and hazard tracking, and flyover views of each hole on 38,000 pre-loaded courses.

If you’re looking for a golf watch that gets extra techy, then you’ll enjoy the dynamic green view. This feature allows you to plan your pitch from the angle of approach shot.

There’s also automatic course and hole recognition with the GPS and the watch will move to the next hole automatically.

It even can be used for other fitness activities like cycling, running, and walking by using the pedometer to reach your daily step goals.

Click here to buy on Amazon

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8. Callaway GPSy Sport Watch

The Callaway GPSy Sport Watch is packed with features and can be purchased at an affordable price compared to other options on the market.

callaway gpsy golf watch review

What to Know:

  • $123.00 on Amazon (click here to see price)
  • Syncs with over 30,000 courses
  • Good battery life
  • Tracks as you play
  • Only two color choices (black & white)

Callaway is a premium and trusted golf brand delivering a powerful golf watch with many capabilities.

You’ll love the GPSy Sport Watch if you want your tracking device to auto-recognize which golf course you’re playing and give you key information like hazarads, dog-legs, lay-up distances, and carry distances.

It will also auto score and track your steps . The battery should last between 10 and 12 hours in GPS mode, placing it near the top of the longevity pile.

Click here to buy on Amazon

9. Bushnell Excel GPS

Bushnell released the Excel GPS Golf Watch it’s one of our top wearables in 2019. They’ve added software updates since releasing and it comes with the Swing Pro App to help you learn about your swing. If you buy on Amazon here you save $100 compared to buying on Bushnell’s website.

bushnell excel golf watch (1)

What to Know:

  • Price: $149.00 (Click here to see on Amazon)
  • Powerful, accurate GPS
  • Auto Course Recognition
  • Auto Hole Advance
  • Integrated Fitness Step Counter
  • Weather
  • Stopwatch/Alarm/Timer
  • Water Resistant
  • Includes USB charging cord
  • Swing Pro App
  • Colors: Black & White

The Bushell Excel GPS is a stylish golf watch getting an A rating in the design department.

It also has all the features you’d want and expect like shot distance measurement, distances to hazards, front, center, and back carry distances, as well as quick syncing with golf courses you play.

Battery life is good as the Bushnell team worked hard to build this watches battery to last 3 full rounds between charges (12-15 hours of battery life).

It’s a button controlled watch rather than touch screen but does have auto-brightness for making the screen easier to read on sunny days.

It also has bluetooth integration with smartphone for course updates without needing to sync with a computer and comes pre-loaded with 35,000+ courses.

A couple of the more ambitious features like Swing Pro, which aims to track the speed at various points in your swing, but this feature needs work in our opinion.

Overall, it’s a great watch for golfers and high on our list of the best gps watches review.

Click here to buy on Amazon

10. Garmin Approach S60 Golf GPS Watch

Garmin’s flagship golf watch, the Approach S60 is last on our list of GPS watches today because of the price. We feel you can get the necessary features at a much cheaper price by going with any of the other golf watches above.

But if you want to spend the money, then this advanced golf watch can help you improve your game thanks to the features packed inside not offered by other GPS golf watches.

garmin s60 golf watch

What to Know:

  • Price $399.00 (check prices on Amazon)
  • Large, 1.2 inches Sunlight-readable color touchscreen display
  • Quickly gets your location using GPS
  • Accurate distances to front/back/center/hazards/doglegs
  • Feature packed with multiple apps
  • More than 40, 000 preloaded courses
  • Still need to get your phone out to view some things
  • Colors: Black, White

What makes the Garmin Approach S60 stand out above the other less expensive Garmin GPS Watches we’ve reviewed above?

For starters, you can pair your Approach S60 with the Garmin TruSwing™ golf swing analyzer to get swing training, including swing speed and club path angles.

Access to PlaysLike Distance, which adjusts yardages to account for uphill and downhill shots so you can select the best club for the situation.

And with Touch Targeting, you can touch any point on the map for precise measurement to that exact spot — including fairway, sand traps, water hazards and more.

Green View gives you each green’s true shape from wherever you are on the course, and it allows you to manually drag-and-drop the pin into the correct location for the day for greater accuracy.

PinPointer even tells you the direction to the pin when you have a blind shot.

Sync the Approach S60 to your compatible smartphone³ to get smart notifications for incoming calls, texts, emails and other alerts.

Download custom watch faces, apps and widgets from the Connect IQ™ store. And customize your watch face with any photo from your mobile device with the Face It™ app.

It has a very stylish build with a 1.2-inch 240 x 240 color screen and loads of features.

The Approach S60 will also automatically record the location and distance of each shot for post round analysis and comparing shots between rounds to learn your tendencies.

There’s also SwingTempo and TempoTraining to help you improve your swing, and of course the Approach S60 works with the Garmin Connect and Garmin Golf apps, syncing your data and letting you compete with friends.

This golf watch is water proof to 5 ATM and its battery will last up to 10 hours in golf mode. There’s many additional features we cover in a separate in-depth review but start with reading about them on Amazon as well as current prices.

Click here to buy on Amazon

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