By Liz W. on March 14 2014
I’ve seen kids play baseball in the streets by using a lemon and a big stick. I’ve seen them kick balls of various shapes/sizes and call the game soccer. It doesn’t take a lot to engage in activities like these. The sports listed below are a different story altogether. It costs a pretty penny to partake in the sports of the rich.
People who own and ride horses consider it an expensive hobby. Initially, they must pony up for the horse. They also have to pay for riding lessons, and if they don’t own enough land, there are boarding and maintenance charges. But if you decide to take on polo as a sport, be prepared for that list of expenses to grow exponentially.
New players can start with a horse or two (at least $15K each). Equipment (helmet, mallet, boots, saddle, etc.) will add another $3-$5K. But the real outlay comes in the form of stable fees, club fees/dues and veterinary charges. These big ticket items can easily run $20K per year.
Skiing is thrilling. The views alone are often worth the adventure. It’s also great exercise. However, the challenge in taking on skiing as a sport is that the best destinations are difficult to get to and prices are exorbitant. Skiing can be dangerous, so if you’re a beginner, it’s advisable to add lessons to your price list.
If you’re staying for a couple of days, equipment rental prices (for skis, boots, poles, etc.) will be in the hundreds, but if you purchase new equipment, you should be prepared to pay thousands for quality gear. Lift tickets can run $100 per day depending on the ski resort, and travel and lodging will add thousands. This is skiing on the cheap! If you’re a millionaire who seeks the very best, consider joining a ski membership club.
The Yellowstone Club, for example, will only accept members who have millions in liquid assets. Once accepted, it costs over $250K to join the club and another $30K in annual fees to stay. Building your own mountain home on this beautiful resort in Montana will cost millions more.
The most accessible of these sports is golf as it is possible in some places to walk on to a public course, but don’t let that fool you. Similar to skiing, there will be ramp-up costs for beginners. To start, you must buy equipment, clothing and lessons.
Some clubs will restrict what golfers are permitted to wear, and you should expect to pay around $200 for starter golf sets. Buying a dozen balls will add at least another $20, and renting a cart will also bump the total by $10-20 (depending on whether it’s a pull or motor cart). While you may be able to easily get to a golf course, and avoid lodging fees, you still have to pay to play.
Green fees vary wildly. The range could be from $20 to hundreds of dollars depending on the course and the location. Membership fees may or may not apply. The most beautiful and exclusive clubs will be just as selective as luxurious ski clubs.
There’s no question that the sports listed above are enjoyable and exciting. Each of them will provide stimulation and will allow you to get closer to nature. But the pursuit is unattainable without the proper equipment, memberships and fees. The price of fun can be hefty. Are you up for the challenge?