Etiquette and rules

The rules of etiquette guarantee the spirit of the game of golf and are therefore valid on all the courses in the world.

They are more the expression of a common sense code of conduct, but it is because of the increasing number of inappropriate behaviours that it is necessary to recall them and to complete them here with certain articles of the internal rules of our club, in order to guarantee each player who plays on our fairways, safety and pleasure of play.

We invite you to give your full attention to these few pages, whether you are a beginner or an experienced player, as failure to respect the rules of etiquette and the rules of our club may result in sanctions.

Priority of play - Club rules

Priority on the field is determined by the pace of play of a group. Any group playing a complete round has the right to overtake a group playing an incomplete round or having cut. The term "group" includes a player playing alone. You must play at a good pace. It is the responsibility of a group of players to maintain the interval with the previous group. If a group is a whole hole behind the previous group and delays the next group, it must invite the latter to pass regardless of the number of players in that group.

Playing speed

For all players who are on a course or about to play, it is important that the speed of play is fluid. This allows you to maintain rhythm and concentration from the beginning to the end of a game.

However, you can be slower than others in your preparation, but you can also make up for lost time by taking advantage of these very useful tips:
  • Be ready to play when it's your turn: to do so, don't hesitate to advance to your ball without disturbing the other players. This allows you to anticipate the calculations of distance and choice of club, and already put on your glove...
  • you avoid the many trial shots just before playing
  • you immediately play a provisional ball if you think your ball will be hard to find or if it may be out of bounds, this will avoid returning to the place of the initial shot. Having a ball in your pocket is therefore a good idea...
  • help your playing partners to look for lost balls
  • avoid leaving your trolley in front of the green, place it in the direction of the next tee, where you will leave the green.
  • on the green, you study your putt line at the same time as the other players without disturbing those who are going to putt.
  • you score when you leave the green worrying that you are no longer within range of the ball in the following game.
  • you don't replay a move that won't count when players are waiting to play their turn
  • in stableford competitions, you raise your ball as soon as you can't score any more points
  • If, despite all efforts, one realises that the next game is waiting to be played, he is invited to pass by; instead of admonitions or reproving looks, receiving thanks and considerations will allow him to continue his game serenely.

On the other hand, if the search for a ball is going to be difficult, letting the ball pass will allow you not to lose the interval with the previous group.

As our course is very busy, it sometimes happens that several games are congested, with no possibility of letting the ball pass. If the previous game is also waiting, take advantage of this moment of relaxation to share a friendly conversation with your playing partners. Staying in a positive mood makes it easier to regain concentration.

On and around the greens

The greens and the edges of the greens are sensitive areas that it is important to protect in order to offer the best playing conditions to everyone, because the maintenance of these very short mowed areas is delicate and cannot be done on a daily basis :
  • you never drive on a green with your trolley or cart, you even avoid going too close to the green.
  • so you never pass with your cart or a cart between a bunker of grass or sand and the green.
  • if you are carrying your bag, put it on the outside of the green.
  • you take note of your pitch and all those you notice
  • to raise your pitch is to raise the impact of your ball when it has landed or hit the green
  • Pitching is done by closing the hole from the outside to the inside so as not to cut the roots of the grass and thus allow it to grow back quickly.
  • we look where other players' marks or balls are to avoid stepping on their lines. In this case, one avoids stepping over a putt line by going around it, one passes behind it.
  • you do not remove your ball from the hole with the head of your putter or any other club so as not to damage the clean cut at the edge of the hole.
  • the flag is carefully removed, put down and put back up again.
  • you do not lean on your putter to avoid the clubhead from marking the green
  • do not run on the green, do not jump, dragging your feet or twisting when putting damages the green considerably.
  • during a game, you never stand in the line of the player who is going to putt, so neither in front nor behind. This is both an infringement of the rules of golf and an embarrassment for the player who is going to putt.
  • One also avoids moving when a player is concentrating on his putt to follow.

On departures

Like the greens, the tee-offs are the most frequented areas of the course. It is therefore important to preserve these areas to a greater extent:
  • practice shots are forbidden in order to limit the number of divots.
  • you never drive on a start with your trolley or cart
  • when making a trial swing outside the tee, care must be taken never to line up in the direction of another player. Indeed, the head of the club can break and cause a serious accident.

In the bunkers

When your ball arrives in a bunker, the shot you'll have to make is likely to be tricky. It will be even trickier if your ball rolls into a footprint or behind a mound of earth due to poor raking:
  • raking a bunker means erasing all traces of its passage through the obstacle and is an obligation.
  • raking a bunker means flattening as much as possible the surface of sand that is stirred up
  • when the bunker is raked and levelled, the rake is placed outside, parallel to the obstacle and the handle is placed in the direction of the hole.
  • There are enough rakes for each bunker, and they are judiciously distributed for easy access. They are put back in the area where they are found to prevent the following players from taking unnecessary steps
  • if a bunker does not have stairs, you enter and leave the bunker from the lowest side to avoid a fall and the slipping of a lawn sod
  • when you come out of the bunker, you avoid bringing sand with you on the green... just tap with your club on the sole of your shoes, outside the green.
  • You also avoid driving your trolley through the grass bunkers. A tired, lying lawn does not favour a shot that will require a good touch of the ball ...

Spirit of the game and behaviour

Unlike other sports, amateur golf is played without the supervision of a referee (with the exception of a few high-level championships). The player's moral integrity is therefore relied upon to show respect for others and to follow and apply all the rules. All players should show courtesy and sportsmanship at all times, despite the competitive spirit that may be present. This is the spirit of golf.
  • Sharing a game with other players begins by arriving on time at the tee, greeting each other, even introducing themselves, and wishing everyone a good game. And when the game is over, thanks and a handshake are the order of the day after leaving the green.
  • you do not disturb a player who is at the address and who is about to play. You keep your distance, you get more free if your shadow interferes in his line of play, you avoid noises and movements.
  • we monitor the moves of each player who shares the game
  • avoid irritating gestures and swearing: a bad golf shot or a lack of success does not affect your playing partners in any way
  • some have the voice that carries, be careful not to disturb players who are on another part of the course. In general, avoid being noisy around the playing areas.
  • damage to the pitch is carefully repaired by replacing divots (sods) torn off during the execution of a blow. Avoid making more divots during trial shots.
  • there are bins at each departure to receive all waste, including cigarette butts
  • one should never play until the above players are out of reach
  • one shouts FORE or BALLE when one misplaces his shot towards another fairway

Moreover, playing on a course that is internationally renowned for its architecture and level of maintenance is no accident. It is therefore imperative to comply with safety regulations so as not to endanger the lives of the gardeners who carry out this precious work:
  • gardeners have priority on Mondays, as major maintenance work is generally carried out on this day.
  • signaling with an arm gesture alerts the gardeners to the wish to play
  • so we wait until they are out of range or attentive before hitting the ball
  • if a gardener has started mowing a green and has removed the flag, he has priority to complete his task before the player makes any shots
  • you scrupulously follow the indications put in place on the course and respect the instructions or warnings of the marshall (game supervisor).

Other internal club rules related to the game

  • It is forbidden to cut or pass through hole no. 18 or hole no. 10 on the way to or from the driving-range.
  • This prohibition is valid in all cases, whether or not there are players finishing their round. It is therefore imperative to take only the forest path.
  • The use of the telephone to make or receive calls is forbidden except in an emergency. Indeed, we come to the golf course to treat ourselves to a moment of relaxation, we even sometimes escape from our professional obligations to reach this haven of peace where discretion is an essential element of the comfort we want to find there.  The ban meets this need, both on the course where it is necessary to concentrate, and in the clubhouse where everyone's private life must not be exposed.
  • For "course", it is necessary to understand all the playing areas. The ban therefore also extends to the practice areas, i.e. the driving range, chipping and putting greens.
  • For "club-house", this includes all public areas, i.e. terraces, restaurants, bar and changing rooms. However, conference and bridge rooms can be used with the door closed.
  • Walkers, who sometimes have no interest in golfers, can interfere with your game. Arm yourself with patience and politeness, your next shot will be all the better, and so will the image of the golfers.
  • Members are responsible for their guests and for informing them of the rules in force at Bossey Golf & Country Club.
  • Training is only allowed in the areas reserved for this purpose.
  • Before leaving for the course, it is imperative to register with the secretary's office on the teeing list (or on the reservation system on the website), with the names of the players making up the game. Those registered, who cannot take the tee-off that they have reserved or that has been reserved for them, must inform the secretariat as soon as possible in order to free up the place for other players. This also applies to registrations for all Club competitions.


  • The competitions are popular because the club enjoys a good reputation with large companies. Thanking those who finance cocktails and prize boards helps to build loyalty, but whatever the competition in which you take part, paying tribute to those who have shone is the most beautiful mark of sportsmanship.
  • Coming to the award ceremonies is essential to the sporting and social life of the club.

Dress code / Internal regulations

To be able to access the course and all the training areas :
  • women's outfits; shirts with collars, round-necked blouses tolerated but only with sleeves and decent necklines, skirts and shorts close to the knees and no higher than the height of the scorecard, shirts above the waist and without openings in the back, comply.
  • men's outfits; shirts with collar and sleeves, turtleneck or turtleneck shirts tolerated, shorts close to the knees and not more than the height of the scorecard, protruding pockets for golf shorts allowed, belt obligatory, shirt inside trousers or shorts, are conforming
  • for all players; golf shoes without nails or metal studs. Jeans, training or leggings, and large advertising logos on polo shirts, jumpers or jackets are non-compliant.

For prize giving at competitions

  • women's clothing; dresses, blouses and skirts or trousers, decent necklines, town shoes
  • men's outfit; shirts with collar and trousers, jacket desired, town shoes
  • for all players; sport-chic

Respect for staff

Day after day and throughout the year, the Committee and its various commissions work to ensure that the club remains at the top of the golfing hierarchy in France as well as in Switzerland. Staying among the elite of the golfing elite is not possible without qualified and motivated staff, whatever the function and position they occupy. It is therefore imperative to respect the work of each individual and even more so when they participate in the application of the rules of good conduct set out above. It is everyone's role to identify and correct non-compliant behaviour. With a touch of friendliness, the pleasure of a beautiful day of golf will remain intact.


The 2019 FFG Rules of Golf Player's Edition