Garmin Approach S20 GPS Golf Watch Review

I received the Garmin Approach S20 GPS Golf Watch for my birthday in April and now that I’ve been using it for a few months I thought I’d do a review of its main features.

I wanted a GPS watch for golf as a substitute for a Bushnell and to give me an idea of how far I was hitting my shots. It currently retails for around £160-190.

Set up:

The watch takes a few minutes to get satellite signals and then download the course map. I've had no problems finding the courses I'm playing. I normally try and set up the watch whilst I’m warming up because there have been a couple of occasions when I’ve got to the first hole and had to wait for it to be ready before I start.

Layout and shot measurement:

The layout is very simple. I had considered buying one of the more expensive colour watches but all the basic functions you need are set out really clearly. I don’t use the watch for any purpose other than golf so I don’t make use of the steps feature or mobile phone notifications.

You can measure the length of your shot with the "Measure Shot" feature. The way this works is you have to select the option when you hit your shot and then when you reach your ball select a button again to record the shot length and you can scroll through distances from other holes to make a comparison.

Each hole overview screen shows the hole number, the par, distances to the front, back and pin location as well as a view of the green.

Garmin layout view


You can turn on the score tracking feature once the course map has downloaded. As soon as the watch detects you are on or near the green you input your score and can click through other holes too.

Other views:

  • Hazards – for par 4 and 5 holes you can see how far hazards along the fairway are and there is also a basic view of the hazard in relation to the green on the side of the screen

Garmin hazard view

  • Layup and Dogleg distances - it is really straightforward to see how far various layup and dogleg positions are

Garmin layup view

  • Green layout - this view shows you the shape of the green and you can reposition the pin

Garmin green view


You currently cannot keep track of statistics such as number of fairways hit, greens in regulation or putts on the watch (please tell me if I'm missing something!). This has to be done through the Garmin Connect or Garmin Golf app on your mobile phone.

It takes a little bit of time to get used to scrolling through the watch features and figuring out how to get to various features whilst you're playing so a touchscreen may make that a bit easier.


I can't really fault this watch as I bought it to keep a basic record of my score and measure my shots when I'm on the course.

The watch has helped me gain a better understanding of my distances with various clubs and so I feel a lot more confident with my club selection now that I can see the accurate distances to various points on each hole. However, as I progress and want more statistics about my game I may make use of other devices or apps instead.

Overall, I would highly recommend it to anyone wanting a clear view of the course as they play and a simple way to track their score and view accurate distances on the course.

I'll update you as I come across any other features on the watch or the app! I'm testing lots of other apps thanks to lots of recommendations on my Instagram so will do a future post on those too.

Happy golfing!

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