A good caddie is aware of the challenges and obstacles of the golf course being played, along with the best strategy in playing it. This includes knowing overall yardage, pin placements and club selection. A caddie is not usually an employee of a private club or resort. They are classified as an "independent contractor", meaning that they are basically self-employed and do not receive any benefits or perks from their association with the club. Some clubs and resorts do have caddie programs, although benefits are rarely offered. Particularly in Europe, the vast majority of clubs do not offer caddies, and amateur players will commonly carry or pull their own bags.
The first caddies appeared in 1817 in Edinburgh. It is believed that the first use of a caddie was by The Duke of Albany of Scotland in 1681 while playing the first international golf contest at Leith Links, which resulted in the construction of Golfers Land in Edinburgh.
Caddies report early each morning at the "Caddy Shack" where they wait until the caddie master assigns them to a golfer. At that time, they retrieve the golfers bag (typically from the bag room) and wait to meet the golfer out in an open area. When done with the morning round of golf(a loop), the caddie can either wait to work an afternoon "loop" or go home. Sometimes caddies show up late in the morning to only work afternoons where some days of the week it can be pretty slow in the morning.
Caddies typically work at clubs all week except Mondays with most traffic on weekends, being the busiest days. Additionally, caddies are often allowed to play the course at which they caddie for free, usually on a Monday (the day that most private clubs choose to close their course for maintenance). On pro golf tours, professional caddies accompany their player to all events, which usually take place from Thursday through Sunday. Additionally, the player may hire their caddie to carry their bag for them during training sessions and practice rounds.