Oktoberfest is so close you can pretty much smell the pretzels and almost hear the drinking chants somewhere way off in the distance. But you’re a little Oktoberfest virgin. And you’re just not in-the-know. That’s where we come in, our cherries having been popped many moons ago when you were still a seed in your father’s ball bag.
- Meeting points: Oktoberfest itself is huge. And any idea you had of perhaps finding your friends after you ducked away for a pee is unrealistic. Especially when almost the whole festival (yourself included) has been suckling away at that golden ale and everyone dressed in dirndl and lederhosen look suspiciously similar (and suspiciously sexy.)
- Waitresses: being the avid dirty traveller that you are, chances are that you have worked some shitty hospitality job, and you’ve probably had to deal with pesky or annoying customers. Unless you’re sitting at a table or are at the Hofbrau tent, don’t try to catch the attention of one of the bier waitresses to order from them. That’s what the bars are for. And no matter how perky those dirndls make them look, DO NOT TOUCH. This is guaranteed to ensure that no more beer will come your way (at least for a while). And on that note, tipping your waitress is a way to guarantee the opposite.
- Pace yourself: Suddenly feel like you maybe shouldn’t have participated in that raucous chorus of a German drinking song and your gag reflex is working overtime? That’s okay. We’ve all forgotten our limits at some point. The Germans have a word for passed out little partiers/tac-nappers just like you: bierleichen, or beer corpses. Just remember: it’s a marathon, not a sprint. Lucky for you, the food at Oktoberfest is finger-licking, damn-freaking-amazing good so you can certainly soak up some of that booze. Load up.
- Choose your times: Oktoberfest offers plenty of different vibes, depending on when you choose to grace it with your presence. The weekends are naturally the busiest times of the festival. During the week you will have more chance of finding some space in the beer tents and will be more likely to come across Germans enjoying themselves and less likely to find the rest of the world ad-libbing German chants.
- Pack warm: Although maybe you’re used to the sun-soaked beaches of Spain and Greece, this is Germany and it is quite a bit further north. And it’s the end of September, which means that come nighttime, it is chiiiii-lllyyyy. We recommend packing all your thermals, a beanie, gloves, a fleece, a ski jacket, snow pants,a fox-fur snood, sheep-wool hiking boots, an eye mask and toe warmers.
- Dress up: Remember that time you rocked up to a dress-up party as the only person whose costume couldn’t possibly have the word ‘sexy’ before it? That’s what it’ll feel like if you don’t embrace the whole experience and don the traditional dirndl for girls and lederhosen for boys. But even if you are down and dirndl-less or sad and sans-lederhosen, don’t worry! Stoke will be selling them right from their own campsite. You don’t even have to travel that far to get into the swing of things.
- Bring moolah: There’s literally no worse thing on this entire planet (literally, nothing) than having to wait in a huge line to get cash out because you were too lazy to think ahead and get some out anywhere else. And god forbid you drunkenly try to order half a roast chicken in order to sober up, only to find that your bank card is received with a dirty look from the cashier. And be careful not to lose it. We know how bad you are when you’re drunk.
- Campsite: On some days, people are at the festival site as early as 8am, to secure a spot inside one of the beer tents. Which means that a whole day at Oktoberfest can involve several drunk-hungover cycles and can be exhausting. Lucky for you, Stoke’s campsite has a bunch of ridiculous activities for you to participate in, dangerously close to the tent you can pass-out in at any point if you choose. So kick up with some unlimited beer and sangria – once you’ve had your fair share of beer halls – and come and party with us!
Knowledge is power, and you now have the power to power-drink, power-eat and power-chuck with the best of ‘em at Oktoberfest. You’re welcome.
P.S. Book with Stoke, we know everything.
Written by the Hobos.