Handicapping Policy


GINS handicapping policy is according to the rules and guidelines set down in the CONGU Unified Handicapping System (UHS), with the following exceptions:

  • GINS uses the Par of the course rather than the Standard Scratch Score (SSS) to calculate the Competition Standard Scratch Score (CSSS). See Note 1.
  • GINS does not implement the Reductions Only (RO) classification. See Note 2.
  • GINS does not implement clause 1.13 of Appendix B. See Note 2.
  • In situations where the UHS calculation has deemed “Reductions Only” or clause 1.13 to be in effect, the GINS calculation will be:
    • If one or more player(s) have scored more points than the CSSS their handicap adjustment will be calculated in the normal manner.
    • If no player has scored more points than the CSSS then the handicaps of those player(s) who have scored the most points will remain the same and all other players will have their handicaps adjusted 0.1 upwards.
  • For the Ladies, GINS includes all golfers up to a handicap of 35.4 within Category 4. See Note 3.
  • GINS does not adhere strictly to the UHS guidelines regarding qualifying competitions being played on a ‘measured’ See Note 4.
  • As of January 2018 the UHS includes Category 4 (Handicap between 20.5 and 28.4) golfers within the CSS calculation. GINS does not. See Note 5.

Handicap Committee

GINS Handicap Committee comprises the Handicap Secretary and the three Course Representatives (Anoreta, Baviera and Los Moriscos).

Allocation of Handicap

New member with valid handicap certificate

New Members who hold a current (maximum 3 Months old) Handicap Certificate, from a Federated Club/Society, should initially play to this Handicap.

New member without valid handicap certificate

New Members who do not hold a current Handicap Certificate from a Federated Club/Society, are required to submit 3 cards, after which a GINS Handicap will be allocated.

Lapsed Member

Lapsed Members who re-join GINS are treated the same as New members above depending on whether they have a current handicap certificate or not.

Handicap Review

Generally, members should play to their lowest handicap; either a GINS allocated handicap or one held at a Federated club.

If a member’s handicap at their Home golf club falls below the GINS handicap then they should inform the GINS Handicap Secretary (GHS) at the earliest opportunity in order for their GINS handicap to be lowered.

If a member’s handicap at their Home golf club becomes higher than their GINS handicap then the GINS handicap still takes precedence.

NB: If a member’s handicap at their Home golf club has been substantially increased due to illness or injury then they may request a handicap adjustment as per the Request for Handicap adjustment/review section below.

GINS Member’s handicaps are subject to review and change under the below circumstances.

On return from absence

Members should play to their lowest handicap. When a member returns from a period of absence it is incumbent upon them to apprise the Handicap secretary of any reduction in their handicap.

Annual Review

An annual review as per UHS recommendations is performed once a year in January. 

Seven 0.1 adjustments

As per UHS recommendations a report listing all members who have had seven 0.1 handicap adjustments in a row is produced every three months.
The members identified in the report will be reviewed by the Handicap Committee and if deemed appropriate their handicap adjusted accordingly.


A Member may request an increase/decrease in Handicap at any time, stating the reasons for same, which must be approved by the Handicap Secretary.

Request for Handicap adjustment/review

A Member may request an increase/decrease in Handicap at any time, stating the reasons for same, which must be approved by the Handicap Secretary.


  1. The result of using the Par of the course rather than the SSS is that GINS handicap assessments are more ‘severe’ than you will find in UK golf societies.
  2. The CSS is meant to reflect the playing conditions on the day with a low percentage of golfers playing within their Buffer Zones equating to difficult weather conditions.
    For GINS, especially the ladies, it is comparatively rare for someone to play to their handicap (even when the sun is shining). The consequence is lots of ROs and everybody’s handicap staying the same.
    This causes handicap stagnation and results in ‘the same ladies winning every week and not getting cut
    Also, Clause 1.13 of Appendix B happens quite often. This has the same stagnating effect as above.
    Appendix B, Clause 1.13: When the number of competitors in Categories 1, 2, 3 [and 4] is five or less and if the calculated Competition Scratch Score (CSS) is equal to, or less than the Standard Scratch Score (SSS) the Competition Scratch Score (CSS) shall be the same as the Standard Scratch Score (SSS).
  3. Over 50% of GINS Ladies are in Category 5 and therefore not included in the CSS calculation.
    So few Ladies were included that one score in the Buffer Zone had an inordinate effect and produced a skewed CSS.
  4. As we are a society playing on multiple courses we do not have control over where the courses put the tees on days when we are playing an individual competition.
  5. In January 2018 the UHS was changed to include Category 4 golfers with Category 3 golfers for the purposes of calculating the Competition Standard Scratch. When GINS implemented this change it affected the CSS adversely in that the CSS was always 33, 34 or 35. It made it appear that the weather was inclement even on the mildest of days. On investigation it was found (due to our specific demographic: see Note 2) that GINS had a considerable number of golfers within Category 4 that never played within their buffer zone. This loaded the CSS calculation towards negative adjustments. So, we decided not to implement the new rule and keep using handicaps in Categories 1, 2 and 3 only.