ISSUE 1/2005

16 March, 2005  

Dear !*SALUTATION*! !*LAST_NAME*!,

The new concept was presented at the Kudos Travel Fair on 12 March. From left me with Ginger, Gardner and Brad from Outdoor Japan.
Golf in Japan has gone through some major developments!

Not only have we completed the course database, which now includes all 2,338 golf establishments in Japan, but we have also added a Forum to exchange views and ideas, we have now three columnists which regularly will provide us with interesting stories related to golf and instructions.

But perhaps most importantly for the future development of this project, we have made an alliance with Outdoor Japan, the leading site on the outdoors and travel in Japan. This also means that this site is now slightly re-branded - Outdoor Japan's Golf in Japan.

Course coverage
Interesting golf columns
Gordon           Paul             Bennett
Golf in Japan is fortunate enough to have three columnists that are very knowledgeable about golf in general and particularly about golf in Japan. Gordon G. Simmonds, Paul Jones and Bennett Galloway will provide their views on golf, instructions and interviews on a regular basis.

The latest contribution is by Bennett titled: "Time to thaw out that golf swing".

Interaction between golfers
One of the most important features of the site is the interaction with golfers. For those of you that have already used the site know that you could rate the courses you have played (for the benefit of other when they select courses to play), and you could also maintain your own playing record on the site, showing when and where you have played, your score, ratings and comments. To use this feature you need to register, but it is very simple and it is free!

But to further increase communication between the users of the site we have also created a Forum, where you could exchange views and experiences, trade equipment that you don't need (or buy, if you need) and find new golfing partners, or even promote your golf tournament of golf outing. If you have some complaints about the site, I prefer if you contact me first....

Reservations
Can't promise you can ride your cabriolet into the clubhouse, but we try to make you feel you could...
Yes, I knew you would ask about reservations....
The most important task ahead of us in the coming months is to develop a reservation system in English with as many courses as possible. This is a fairly complicated task as it involves contacting the courses to find out if they are interested in attracting more foreign players and capable of receiving reservations in English online. In case they are interested, but don't have staff capable of handling English, we would provide "live support", i.e. you send your reservation request to us, we contact the club in Japanese to secure your reservation and we confirm it to you in English.

In addition, there's also a financial aspect to it. We need to cover costs to setup the system and for the manpower to provide the live support, so someone has to pay for it. We don't plan to charge you, so the courses participating in the reservation system should pay a small fee. And this requires negotiations too... But before the hot season is here, we should have a fairly large number of courses signed up, that is our target!

Event Information
I will post in this bulletin information about coming golf events. If you organize an event that you would like to publishe here (and on the web site), please contact me.

15 April: Stora Enso Cup - Sweden-Finland Golf Challenge
The 7th Sweden-Finland Golf Challenge (team competition between the Finnish and the Swedish Chambers) is played on Friday 15 April for a trophy donated by Stora Enso Japan K.K. The event is played at at Windsor Park G & C.C. in Ibaraki Prefecture and open to members of the respective chambers. For further information, please click at right for a flyer. 30 May: The EU-Japan Friendship Cup Golf Day
This competition forms part of the EU-Japan Friendship Week Calendar. EU-Japan Friendship Week is an integrated series of sporting, cultural and academic events that is held annually during the month of May. This event is also played at Windsor Park G & C.C..
For further information, click link at right.

At the Kudos Fair (see image caption at the top) I had the chance to chat with perhaps 150 people and get their opinions on golf. Although this might not have any high statistical significance, I would say that about 30 % of them plays golf, 60 % don't like it and 10 % said that they used to play, but not anymore, or not after they moved to Japan.

One of the objectives of this site is also to change the minds of those 10 %. It is not that difficult to enjoy golf here (hopefully "we've made it easier"), and it is not as expensive as it used to be, and as many people think it still is.

Please enjoy the site and if you have any questions, comments, or want to promote your business on the site or in this bulletin, please  contact me .
There's a lot of sponsor opportunities still available...;-)

Best regards

Clas G. Bystedt