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5 Tips for Aussies to Survive and Thrive at Oktoberfest

AUSTRALIA | Friday, 16 September 2016 | Views [1092]

At this year’s Oktoberfest, 6 million people are expected to celebrate the largest beer festival in the world between 17 September and 3 October, 2016. 20,000 of those revelers are Australians that will be descending upon Munich, Germany; and even more Kiwis and New Zealanders. It’s a festival unlike any other, and it’s definitely a good idea to be aware of the environment you’re going into as well as the ins and outs.

1. Booking Your Flight

Although Australians commute to Oktoberfest from countries from around the world, such as the US, Canada and the UK, roundtrip flights between Australia and Munich can often be quite pricey. It’s also a long distance to fly and can add some additional difficulty if you are just staying for a weekend getaway.

It’s often best to reserve your flight up to a year in advance, as this is when the prices are the lowest all year. For an event that is in such high demand, being on-time means being early.

As an additional option in these cases, you can quickly and easily search for flight discounts and promo codes at a site like Cuponation. Or even gain potential cashback on your flight with CashRewards.com.

2. Beer and Food

As you saddle up and head to the Theresienwiese fairgrounds for a full day of aggressive day-drinking, do yourself a favor and come physically and financially prepared.  This means having some food in your stomach and enough cash in your pocket. According to Oktoberfest-insider.com, the breakdown of food costs at Oktoberfest 2015 is as follows:

Oktoberfest Menu At-A-Glance

  • 2 beers, or similar drinks @ 11.00 Euro = 22.00 Euro
  • 1 chicken, or similar food @ 15.00 Euro = 15.00 Euro
  • 1 Brez'n (Pretzel), or similar food @ 5.00 Euro = 5.00 Euro
  • 2 trips on public transport @ 3.00 Euro = 6.00 Euro
  • Total cost, per person = 48.00 Euro

As prices do vary slightly from year-to-year, this is a good indicator of what the menu prices will actually be. Nobody ever said that Oktoberfest would be cheap, but it’s always good to get an idea of what a proper budget looks like to ensure that you have a great time.

Keep in mind that the pretzels sold inside the tents are actually enormous. They are perfect for getting something into your stomach between meals.

3. Finding a Seat

The Oktoberfest celebration is always a hectic frenzy. Getting into a tent and finding a place to sit for you and your mates is a must - yet there are unwritten guidelines of how this should be done. If you happen to have a reservation in a tent, you don’t have much to worry about besides showing up to the correct tent at the time of your reservation. If you don’t have a reservation, Oktoberfest is a different animal.

When inside a tent, it can be very tricky to find even one place to sit; and you must be sitting in order to be served. Being in a cheerful mood will definitely help as the people attending the festival are from all over the world. They are also aware of the lack of seating so striking up friendly conversation may persuade a group to make room for you at their table.

The opening Saturday of Oktoberfest, weekends and German Unity Day (3 October) are the most difficult days to enter the most popular tents without reservation. This requires waking up early to stand in line before 8am to hopefully get a seat. On weekdays, it is recommended to arrive before 3pm as these days are less busy.

4. Respect the Waitresses

The waitresses at Oktoberfest are primarily about 2 things only: serving beer, and no nonsense. They’re the all-important threshold between you and your beer. And as security is virtually omnipresent, they can also get you thrown out in the blink of an eye. So, when you see these ladies carrying 8-10 glasses of beer, be polite and give them enough room to maneuver around you.

Tipping your waitress is very (VERY) important. When you tip well, your waitress will recognize this and will be receptive and timely with your orders. Neglecting to tip well will almost assure that you will also be neglected, at least for some time.

5. Traditional Bavarian Fashion

The traditional Bavarian fashion that you often see sported at Oktoberfest consists of dirndl for women (dresses) and lederhosen for men (leather trousers). Wearing one of these outfits helps to immerse you in the Bavarian experience and keeps you from looking like a know-nothing tourist.

Dirndl can be found at very affordable prices, from $30 and up. But what’s also important is how ladies position the dress’ knot. A knot facing the back means that that the lady is a widow; a left-facing knot means that the lady is single; a right-facing knot signifies that the lady is taken; and a knot to the front means the lady is a virgin.

Lederhosen, on the other hand, can be made from various types of leather, from cow to deer, making them typically more expensive. You can find lederhosen for $50 and up. However a real, authentic lederhosen outfit might run you $250 or more.

Tags: australians, australians in europe, beer, europe, europe travel, germany, oktoberfest, tips, travel, travel tips


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