By John Jacksons

Tips for attending the 2011 Masters Championship in Augusts, GA April 4 – 10, 2011.

The 2011 Masters Championship, golf’s most glamorous tournament, begins with practice rounds on Monday April 4th through Wednesday, April 6th and the actual tournament runs for 4 days from Thursday, April 7th to Sunday, April 10th when a champion is crowned. Getting a ticket to the Masters is more difficult to get than a ticket to the Super Bowl, NCAA Final Four or the Kentucky Derby. If you want to attend this year’s Masters, the time to plan is now.

Augusta, Ga area hotels and accommodations go fast. Prices for hotels in and around Augusta are 2 to 3 times higher than other times of the year. If you can find a room nearby and are willing to pay the price, you should make your reservations now. Don’t expect to find any rooms within 30 miles of Augusta if you wait until there are only 2 or 3 weeks before the Masters Week begins.

One of the ways to save a little money is to book a hotel in a neighboring city. You might find a perfectly good room 30 miles or more away from the golf course and pay only a fraction of the rates the nearby hotels are charging. There are designated park and ride lots set up in the outlying areas so you can leave your car and take transportation provided during the Masters Champiosnhip week. Parking on Tournament grounds is on a first come first served basis for patrons with proper credentials, but it fills up fast.

Another good idea if you plan on attending this year’s Masters is to find a reputable agency that specializes in providing Masters Packages. There are a number of experienced travel agents and sports services that will combine a hotel room, transportation to the event and tickets for one all-inclusive price. Nothing is really cheap, but if you have your heart set on attending this special golf event, you should expect to lay out some serious money.

Masters Tickets for practice rounds are a whole lot less expensive than the actual tournament rounds. For a badge to admit you to 2 days of practice at the beginning of the week, you can expect to pay around $400. If you choose a package deal with hotel and admission for 2 days and nights, prices begin at around $1,200 and, depending on the particular hotel, they can run in excess of $2,000.

The serious money is spent if you want to see the last 2 rounds of the Tournament on the weekend and stay at a nice hotel. For two days of watching the world’s best golfers battle it out for the coveted Green Jacket, you might be set back close to $3,000.

If you are flying in from around the country, you should book a flight to Atlanta. It is a little over a 2 hour drive for the 140 mile trip to Augusta National. Other options for nearby major airports are Charlotte, NC which is also about 140 miles away and Jacksonville, FL which is just over 200 miles to the southeast of Augusta.

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