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Learn the Major Oktoberfest Do's and Don'ts Before Attending the Festival

A Quick Glance! 

Oktoberfest DOS👍         

   Oktoberfest DON'TS 👎

Make a To-Do-List to Spend an Ideal Wiesn Day

Don’t Book Your Accommodations Last Minute 

Eat Proper German Cuisine!

Don’t worry about a Traditional Outfit

Must Learn German Song!

                                                                

Don’t Drink too Much Beer! 

Learn Basic Oktoberfest ABC!

Don’t Bring Your Own Food 

Visit Famous Hotels!

Don't Pee in Public! 

Catch the Parade 

Don’t Keep Your Seat Free 

Bring your Cash!

Don't Photographing Topless Exhibitionists

Attending Oktoberfest in Munich, Germany, is a dream for many. This world-renowned festival offers a vibrant experience filled with traditional Bavarian culture, delicious food, and of course, overflowing steins of beer. To fully enjoy yourself in the festivities and ensure a smooth experience, familiarizing yourself with some Do’s and Don'ts of  Oktoberfest is essential.

If you are not prepared to attend Oktoberfest, the experience can quickly turn from fröhlich (happy) to frustrating. That's where learning the festival's etiquette comes in, as travel writer Sherry Mann emphasizes:

'Walking into Oktoberfest without a plan or any knowledge of the traditions is a recipe for disaster,' Mann says. 'Knowing the dos and don'ts helps you navigate the crowds, find a seat, and ultimately, have a more enjoyable experience- Sherry Mann, travel writer!

Oktoberfest Dos for an Authentic Experience

Oktoberfest is a blast, but knowing the ropes beforehand keeps things smooth. You'll avoid rookie mistakes, experience the true Bavarian culture, and most importantly, maximize the fun! 

#1- Make a To-do-List to Spend “Ideal Wiesn Day”! 

Before going to Oktoberfest, it's important to have an idea of how to spend a day at Wiesn to avoid any inconvenience. Plan your day with a schedule in mind so you can make the most of your time. For example, you can use this sample time management as a guide to create your own to-do list.

9:00 AM : Take the U4 or U5 metro to Schwanthalerhöhe for a convenient arrival. Enjoy a pleasant walk past the Bavaria statue for a fantastic view of Oktoberfest and Munich.

10:00 AM : Having breakfast at Café Kaiserschmarrn near the Löwenbräu Festhalle is a great insider tip!

11:30 AM: Visiting the Wiesn during lunchtime is best spent at the beer gardens. It's also highly recommended to check out the smaller tents. One insider tip is Ammers Hühnerbraterei - a wonderful small beer garden that serves the best Augustiner beer from the wooden barrel and delicious organic chicken. It's a fantastic culinary treat. You'll also experience a lot of sun, an authentic Bavarian lifestyle, and live music, all great bonuses."

2:30 PM: A leisurely stroll around the Oktoberfest grounds offers plenty to see! Don't miss the "Teufelsrad" and "Beim Schichtl" - two of the most traditional attractions at Oktoberfest. Also, be sure to take a ride on the Ferris wheel for impressive views of the area and the rooftops of Munich.

5:00 PM: It's best to head to the larger tents by 5 PM, as it becomes increasingly difficult due to reserved seating. The evening hours offer a wonderful atmosphere. The younger crowd tends to gather at the Schottenhamel Festhalle, Bräurosl, or Winzerer Fähndl, while a calmer and more sophisticated atmosphere can be found at Marstall, Ochsenbraterei, and Fischer Vroni. Keep in mind that entering Nymphenburger Weinzelt, and Schützenfestzelt without a reservation won't be easy.

10:30 PM: After Oktoberfest, celebrations continue at various locations throughout the city with After Wiesn parties. Check out these top locations:

  1. After-Wiesn at Heart, Lenbachplatz 2, Munich
  2. Après-Wiesn at Park Café, Sophienstrasse 7, Munich
  3. Wiesn-Club, Alte Kongresshalle, Theresienhöhe 15, Munich

Do follow this, you will have a great time!

#2- Bring your Cash! 

In a world where card payments are on the rise, Oktoberfest stays true to its traditions by accepting cash only in most tents. Even in the few places where card payments are accepted, the experience can be inconvenient as the waiters struggle to serve amidst the energetic crowds. To make the most of your time at the festival, consider tipping in cash with your first beer to streamline service throughout the day.

Maximize your festival experience by ensuring you have cash on hand before entering the grounds, saving you from long ATM lines. While Oktoberfest offers an amazing atmosphere, it's important to safeguard your cash, as the lively tents can attract opportunistic pickpockets. 

Don't let yourself be the one saying, "Someone has stolen money from my pocket."

#3- Eat Properly to Enjoy German Cuisine! 

When attending Oktoberfest, remember that food is an essential part of the experience, especially if you are drinking. Some traditional Oktoberfest food includes: 

  • Weisswurst (part of a balanced Bavarian breakfast)
  • Pretzels (Brezel)
  • Roasted almonds (Gebrannte Mandeln)
  • Roasted half chicken (Wiesn-Hendl or Halbes Hendl)
  • Fish rolls (Fischsemmel)
  • Roast pork knuckle (Schweinhaxe)
  • Desserts such as gingerbread heart (Lebkuchenherz)
  • Caramelized (Kaiserschmarrn)
  • Dumplings with sauce (Dampfnudel, Rohrnudel, Germknödel)
  • Battered fried apple ring (Apfelkücherl)
  • Apple Strudel (Apfelstrudel)

However, be mindful of the prices, as a half a chicken can cost around 20 euros. Also, it's best to avoid generic German specialties like Currywurst, which is better enjoyed in Berlin.

#4-Must Learn this Song! 

Learn only one song: "Ein Prosit." Most Oktoberfest beer tents feature traditional German bands that break into this song every 10 or 20 minutes.

      German                                             Phonetically English

Ein Prosit, ein Prosit                  Ayn Prawseet, Ayn Prawseet

Der Gemütlichkeit                     Dare Gae-meet-lich-kite

Ein Prosit, ein Prosit                  Ayn Prawseet, Ayn Prawseet

   Der Gemütlichkeit                  Dare Gae-meet-lich-kite

After the band performs this song, everyone raises their glasses and chants: "Oans, zwoa, drei, Gsuffa!" which means "one, two, three, drink!". You are required to sing this song and drink after each performance. It's mandatory.

#5- Do Visit these Hotels at Oktoberfest! 

If you're traveling to Germany for the biggest festival, it wouldn't be fair to miss out on visiting major hotels. Make sure to experience these two amazing hotels during your trip.

Aloft Munich

Experience an energizing stay at the stylish Aloft Munich! Situated directly across from the central train station, it's the ideal hotel for Oktoberfest. Unwind in the lounge with refreshing drinks and snacks, and soak up the lively atmosphere at the WXYZ Bar with its expertly crafted cocktails and live music. Your visit to Oktoberfest is bound to be unforgettable at Aloft Munich!

FourPoints by Sheraton

The Four Points by Sheraton Munich Central is the closest of all the Oktoberfest hotels to the fairground. In less than five minutes, you will reach the main entrance of the Oktoberfest. Similarly, in just about the same time, you will reach the pedestrian zone to explore all aspects of Munich during your stay. The hotel offers a comfortable bed, delicious breakfast, and freshly brewed coffee to provide some relaxing compensation for the eventful day at the Oktoberfest.

#6-Catch the Parade!

There are two fantastic parades during the first two days of the festival's first week. The first parade takes place on Saturday and involves all the breweries showcasing their horse-drawn carriages loaded with beer. You will see well-known brewery names, some smaller ones, and plenty of marching bands. On Sunday, the costume parade includes more cars and even more marching bands! Take advantage of these parades if you're at the festival during the first week.

Unfortunately, if you visit during the second or third weekend, you will miss the parades.

#7-Learn Oktoberfest ABC! 

You don’t need to go back to school or nursery to remember the ABCs! Just kidding. These alphabets represent important things that are associated with Oktoberfest or items you should bring along!

A for „Anzapfen“ ,,Ozapft is!“ which means „It‘s tapped“ The mayor of the city of Munich calls these words out every year, tapping a barrel and the Oktoberfest is officially open.

B for „Bandl“ Everyone needs a „Mass-Bandl“. It is a small ribbon for marking your beer mugs.

C for Champagne- You can get it at the Weinzelt and Käfer Wiesn-Schänke. Munich‘s High Society is a bonus! 

D for „Diridari“ Stands for currency of all kinds! You will need a lot of that at the Oktoberfest. 

E for End „Aus is‘ und gar is‘ und schad is‘, dass wahr is‘!“ Everything comes to an end. Everyday at 11 PM most tents close. Last orders can be placed at 10:30 PM! 

F for Flirt ,,Obandln“, as people from Munich say, means flirting. It‘s equally a part of the Oktoberfest like beer, garbs and roast chicken.

G for „Glupperl“ The Glupperl is a clothes-pin and a must-have at the Oktoberfest. Every guest should wear one with his name or nickname on it. 

H for „Holz vor der Hütt‘n“ A slang term for a full cleavage. Because a beautiful Dirndl just looks perfect with a nice décolleté. 

I for „Italienerwochenende '' The second Oktoberfest weekend is well known for lots of Italian guests.! 

J for „Janker“ Every real Bavarian has one: The Bavarian janker is the ideal jacket for colder days. 

L for „Lederhose“ The traditional attire to wear at Oktoberfest.

M for „Mass“ A Mass is the well-known liter of beer at the Oktoberfest. The price of a Mass beer rises slightly every year due to increasing expenses for the innkeepers. Well pronounced it is „Mass“ not „Maas“. 

N for „Noagerl Broadly translated it means dregs. Real Bavarians and passionate Wiesn enthusiasts leave the last flat sip in the glass.

O for „Ox am Spieß“ Ox on a spit. A real classic at the Ochsenbraterei tent is the full ox roast. Every year 116 oxen are prepared and eaten. 

P for „Promis“ When Oktoberfest is calling a lot of celebrities follow: Actors, models and sportsmen. Best chance to meet them at Käfer‘s Wiesn-Schänke, Weinzelt, or Marstall. 

Yes, q,r,s,t, u, v, w, x, y, z alphabets have meanings too. However, this will take your time as there are more important things here for you to know!

Tip- “Oh no! I think I‘ve lost something” 

Do Take Care of Your Belongings! Every year, up to 3,646 things are lost and found at Oktoberfest. Over the last few years, the lost items reported were;

  • 900 IDs 
  • 400 keys 
  • 230 glasses 
  • 3 wedding rings 

Most of these items are commonly found in parks or in tents, so it's better to keep your belongings with you to avoid losing them. With the crowds, there's a higher chance of misplacing things.

Some Major Don'ts of Oktoberfest! 

Oktoberfest can be a lot of fun, but knowing the don'ts ahead of time will keep your trip smooth! Know what not to do at Oktoberfest so that you can focus on the fun stuff - the music, the food, and celebrating with friends! Here are the major Oktoberfest mistakes to avoid at the festival;

#1. Don’t Book Your Accommodations Last Minute! 

People usually plan their trip to Oktoberfest well in advance due to the high demand for accommodations in Munich. As a result, places to stay fill up quickly, and if you wait until the last minute, you may end up paying significantly higher rates. It's best to secure your accommodation early to avoid long bus rides to the festival and to save money! 

Wait, are you still wrapped in a blanket, thinking about booking your accommodation tomorrow? Don’t be lazy, get up and book it now!

#2. Don’t Worry about Wearing a Traditional Outfit! 

Somehow, you are worried that you will stand out as an odd tourist because you are not wearing Bavarian lederhosen and dirndl. But don't worry - while many people will be dressed in traditional Oktoberfest attire, you'll be just fine in your regular clothes. By the end of the day, consider buying some leather pants or a poofy dress, just in case you come back to Oktoberfest. 

Suggestion- Don't buy the low-quality ones sold to tourists for 99 Euros at the train station. If you're going to get traditional attire, invest in the good stuff, such as authentic lederhosen.

#3. Bringing Your Own Food- A Big NO! 

A beer tent isn’t just a beer garden! That's why you are not allowed to bring your own food. Those who do are quirky and thrown out. Usually, there are beer gardens in front of the tents where you can enjoy your snack without upsetting anyone! 

#4. Drink too Much Beer? Absolutely NO! 

Getting tipsy is a part of the fun at Oktoberfest. However, binge drinking is simply not pleasant. When people stumble around the event drunk and end up vomiting in the crowd, they ruin the experience for themselves and others. After all, you didn't come all the way to Munich to forget everything because you drank too much.

#5. Peeing in Public - No Way, Yuck!

At some point, you will need to use the bathroom due to all the beer you have consumed. Despite long lines, it's important not to urinate behind the tents. Just as you wouldn't do this at home, doing so at the event can result in a fine of up to €100 (about $96).

Helpful Suggestion- It's better to plan in enough time to make your way to the next toilet - there are hundreds of them.

#6. Keeping a Seat Free - No, That's very Uncool!

Tables like the ones in the beer tents are highly sought after, and the tents often have to turn people away because they get too crowded, especially on weekends. However, it's important not to save a table for your friends. The staff will promptly make sure that any unoccupied seats are given to customers waiting for a spot.

#7. Photographing Topless Exhibitionists? Don't!

It is absolutely fine to capture wonderful moments with women at a party, but it is important to respect their boundaries. It's inappropriate to photograph women who spontaneously decide to remove their tops, known as "Blankzieherinnen" in German. Everyone deserves respect and privacy, and it's not okay to take pictures of people in vulnerable situations. Make sure that everyone feels comfortable and respected, and cherish the memories at the Oktoberfest without sharing moments that are meant to stay private.

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