6 Things I learned Going to Ocktoberfest

Photo of 6 Things I learned Going to Ocktoberfest 1/1 by Robert Walsh

My birthday was this month and I turned fifty, (hard to believe) so was looking to do something different, so I headed over the Munich, Germany for the famous Oktoberfest. One thing you may not realize is that it starts in mid-September and ends the first week of October.

This trip was part of a longer trip that I will write about at a future date. I got into Munich the Friday before Oktoberfest started and had planned on going to the opening beer tapping. Honestly I had not done a whole lot of research before going so I had a lot of planning to do.

Which brings me to my lesson one,

If you want to sit down inside a tent and order a beer, you need to reserve a seat. What I found out is that you need to reserve about a year in advance. Well obviously I didn’t do that so I had to just show up.

So lesson two; if you don’t reserve a seat in advance go during the week, preferably during the morning "session". I went around noon on Sunday, the second day. I was very fortunate. It was a lousy rainy day; but this was a GOOD thing.

Why is that you say?

Well it kept away the crowds. I was able to get into the tents before they closed. Yes, the “tents” close and you are stuck waiting in line, maybe for the rest of the day.

Side note, I dont know why they are called “tents” . There is nothing remotely tent like about them. They are large buildings, decorated warehouses with a fabric roof.

Lesson three; if you want to have a beer, (why else are you there) you need to have a seat in a tent. You cant just get a beer standing around, and that’s all I was able to do. You also cannot drink outside of the tents! There are no “beer stands” to be had. So if you’re not in a tent and seated, no beer for you!

Luckily, I was able to find some outside seating that was covered from the rain and able to secure a seat there and get my beer.

Lesson four, dont be shy, you will have to ask people if you can sit at their tables. You are never going to just find an open table.

Lesson six; bring your favorite headache medicine, I had the worst hangover the next morning, while tht beer was excellent, it will give you a splitting headache.

I had a lot of fun and I highly recommend going, just do some planning and learn from my mistakes.