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#6512 - 07/30/05 01:03 PM Thinking about returning to bowling...
JimD Offline
Bantam

Registered: 07/30/05
Posts: 12
A/S/L: 50/M/Washington UK
Hi, this is my first post here. Please excuse the ramblings, there is a question at the end!

I used to bowl in a league when I was in my late teens and early twenties, but drifted away what with wife, family etc.

Now at the tender age of 50, I'm thinking about starting up again, in 'fun' league (this time teaming up with my wife, who is a promising beginner).

Everything looked fine till I discovered how much it costs to play these days! Our local centres charge over 4 per game (the 3rd game is bit cheaper) at peak time, which is now all weekend and weekdays after 6pm. So that means 3 games each comes to over 25! Alot to fork out every week.

I just wondered what other people are paying, and also, do you still get discount rates when you bowl in a league (I seem to remember that we used to, but it was a long time ago laugh )
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Jim

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#6513 - 07/31/05 12:19 PM Re: Thinking about returning to bowling...
JimD Offline
Bantam

Registered: 07/30/05
Posts: 12
A/S/L: 50/M/Washington UK
Well, to answer my own question; I had a word with one of the guys that runs the Sunday morning league. 10 per week including league fee.

So 20 pw for the two of us, or over 1000 a year: out of the question for us (and we're not poor). :rolleyes:

The guy told us 4 pairs dropped out last season; I'm not surprised.

This game is now more expensive to play than golf! For less money you could join a good golf club and play all day every day if you wanted!
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Jim

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#6514 - 07/31/05 01:25 PM Re: Thinking about returning to bowling...
ExBronxiteBowler Offline
PBA Senior Bowler

Registered: 04/19/05
Posts: 587
A/S/L: M 66 Staten Island, NY
Hmm, I don't know what it is in English currency, but here in staten island, league dues are getting out of hand. Go accross one of the bridges to NJ, and they are more reasonable, not to mentiom that if you carpool with 2 other teammates, it will cost one dollar for the toll instead of 6. Moreover, gas prices are also lower in NJ, at least 30 cents a gallon lower.
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#6515 - 07/31/05 02:41 PM Re: Thinking about returning to bowling...
JimD Offline
Bantam

Registered: 07/30/05
Posts: 12
A/S/L: 50/M/Washington UK
Hi ExBB. 10 is around $17.58 (that's per week) which means about $915 a year each.

We have a slightly cheaper centre 10 miles away, but the difference is about what it costs for petrol to get there & back. The local centre is right on our doorstep.

It seems as though the bowling centres here are trying to drive the customers away!
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Jim

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#6516 - 07/31/05 03:40 PM Re: Thinking about returning to bowling...
ExBronxiteBowler Offline
PBA Senior Bowler

Registered: 04/19/05
Posts: 587
A/S/L: M 66 Staten Island, NY
IS that all? Geez, on Staten Island most leagues are 30 bucks a week and we bowl a 36 week season and some leagues are 35 a week. I go to New Jersey and the league fees are cheaper (fun leagues are around 17 bucks a week, money leagues are around 25 to 27 a week AND pay more at the end) Gas is cheaper, and the Toll is one dollar with EZPASS Carpool.
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USBC Silver coach
Ritger level 3 coach

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#6517 - 08/01/05 02:13 AM Re: Thinking about returning to bowling...
JimD Offline
Bantam

Registered: 07/30/05
Posts: 12
A/S/L: 50/M/Washington UK
I don't see how most people can afford that, ExBB.

Maybe salaries are higher over there! I mean you have to pay for practive games as well if you want to be any good. Or perhaps bowling is a rich man's sport; I didn't think it was in the US, though.
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Jim

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#6518 - 08/01/05 04:15 AM Re: Thinking about returning to bowling...
Atochabsh Offline
USBC Bronze Coach

Registered: 02/13/01
Posts: 6567
A/S/L: 50/F/California
We pay $14/week for a mixed handicap league. Some leagues, like high scratch leagues are more. Leagues in various areas, like cities vs rural developements. This is why the New Jearsey league is less then the Staten Island league for ExBB. I bet leagues are more in London then they are in other smaller towns. Most senior leagues are considerably less expensive.

Most houses give discounts for open play to their house league bowlers. In the summer, our house gives us three free games a day of practise. It cannot be carried over to the next day if you don't use it. In the fall, the league discount is 1/2 price. That's about $2/game. Its as good a deal as you're going to get around here. I too could not afford to practise without being in a league. I can't afford to practise in other houses I do not bowl league in.

Its not as expensive a sport as golf or many other "once a week" activities people may do. Its only $5 more then going to the movie theater.

Erin

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#6519 - 08/01/05 11:43 AM Re: Thinking about returning to bowling...
JimD Offline
Bantam

Registered: 07/30/05
Posts: 12
A/S/L: 50/M/Washington UK
Yes, Erin, I'm sure you're right about the price varying from city to city.

As regards free or cheap practice, that wasn't mentioned; I'll have to ask. But I've read on here that AMF (who own my local centre) aren't the most generous in that direction, so I don't know.

I suppose the reason I'm complaining is that I'm irritated thatI can't do what I set out to do, which was introduce my wife to league bowling.

She is now saying I should join a league myself, as paying for one is (just) affordable. I didn't really want to leave her out, though; I thought it was something we could enjoy together.

Incidentally, golf over here is cheaper than bowling. Annual membership of our local golf club (which is a high standard course) is less than 500. And for that you can play as many times as you want for no extra money.
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Jim

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#6520 - 08/01/05 02:33 PM Re: Thinking about returning to bowling...
Atochabsh Offline
USBC Bronze Coach

Registered: 02/13/01
Posts: 6567
A/S/L: 50/F/California
Jim,

I notice that you calculated bowling for the entire year of 52 weeks. Here in the states, the bowling leagues are divided up into summer and winter. Our winter leagues are the busiest and last 32 to 36 weeks. The summer leauges are about 12 to 14 weeks. I'd say that the percentage of people that do NOT bowl summer but bowl winter is at least 50%, possibly up to 70%. We have a good group in our Fri. 9pm league and many bowl both winter and summer. However, we have 14 teams in summer and 22 teams in winter.

So at 32 weeks, that's $562.36 and you get some of that back as prize fund. You get even more back if you do well during the season.

So a few more things to ask at your bowling center is how long the league season is. And once you have a couple leagues in mind, ask for a previous league fees break down. That will show you how much goes into lineage to the alley, secretary fees and prize fund. The prize fund goes back to the bowlers at the end of the season depending on how well you do. But everyone gets back something. So if you make back a minimal of $100 (we usually get back about ($300 - 400 because we pick our teams wisely) that is now $462 each. IF the leagues there run like the leagues here. :-)

Erin

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#6521 - 08/01/05 03:02 PM Re: Thinking about returning to bowling...
JimD Offline
Bantam

Registered: 07/30/05
Posts: 12
A/S/L: 50/M/Washington UK
Thanks for that advice, Erin. I'll do that.
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Jim

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