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Oktoberfest Questions

Chicago, Illinois
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Oktoberfest Questions

Hi All-

5 of us are heading to Oktoberfest this year and after searching the web and this forum for some time, I still have a few questions. Any help would be much appreciated!!

1.) We're driving to Munich on Sunday, Sept. 19, from Amsterdam. Best case scenario is that we will arrive to our hotel(Hilton City Centre) at 5:00. Should we even bother trying to head down to the festival that night? Or is that so late that we wouldn't have a chance of getting into a tent?

2.) Anyone ever make the drive from Amsterdam to Munich? Google says it's about 7.5 hours..is that realistic?

3.) We're a group of 5 and plan on going to the tents on Monday and Tuesday. How early should we get there to gaurantee a table(planning on Hacker and Hofbrau)?

4.) If we get there in the early afternoon, is there any way to make sure that we're not at a table which is reserved for the evening session, so we don't have to change seats half way through? We'd prefer to grab our table and know that we're secure for the entire evening.

5.) Will we be 'obnoxious Americans' if we all wear lederhosen and dirndls?

6.) Any touristy 1/2 day trips you would recommend we could do and still have time to get to the festival in the afternoon?

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Boston...
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1. Re: Oktoberfest Questions

I can help with a couple. We went last year and it was a great time!!

1. I would give it a try. Usually on Sunday a few people leave since some people will have to work on Monday

3. I think if you are there by noon or so you should be fine. I am no expert there but weekdays tend to be easier

5. Not at all. A LOT of people wear lederhosen and dirndls. More than I had expected.

6. Neuschwanstein Castle or Mike's Bike Tour of Munich. We loved Mike's Bike Tour!

PS...If you don't mind standing go to the Hofbrau. There are standing "bar height" tables that you can stand at the far end, in the center of the tent. Very fun!

london
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2. Re: Oktoberfest Questions

1. Definitely worth going - Sunday late evening is not that busy and you have great chances to squeeze in somewhere.

3. Better no later than 4-5pm. I even managed to sneak to Hacker, one of the most popular tent, at 7 pm at weekday but at this time it's full to the brim and one have to stand.

4. There should be a reservation sign, if not - double check with the waiter. Normally all the boxes and balconies are reserved for evening, so better chances in the central area.

5. Before it was not normal for non-German to wear lederhosen, now it's more acceptable.

6. It's difficult to squeeze outside trip in half day, so you can go somewhere closer like Olympia park, if the weather is good.

Agree with srauhala - you may try "the Zoo" - standing area in the Hofbräu tent. Very impressive.

Florida
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3. Re: Oktoberfest Questions

The Liederhosen question for me is quite easy to answer. I am of German blood (50% on father's side), and Irish on Mother's side.. My Great / Great grand parents came to America only 110 years ago. Also, I speak the language, lived in Deutschland for 3 years, and have been back to the fatherland 14 times in the past 12 years. There are many of us "just like that" in America, and we have no issues wearing the Bavarian attire. Moreover, I have many friends in Munchen whom have come to expect it from some of my "skinnier" friends like Luch & Carl, etc. As for myself, I was wayyy over 325 lbs for about 6 years, so I have not worn them in several years. However, I have gone from 390 lbs to 252 lbs in the past 8 months. I will at least wear the shorts & shirt this year! (on a semi-warm day..)

Munich, Germany
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4. Re: Oktoberfest Questions

With 5 of you even during the week you will want to get there early afternoon (2ish) latest to guarantee enough space. Especially important if the weather isn't too good. Even more important to get early if you choose the Hacker or "the Zoo"

Lederhosen/dirndl question - Definitely Lederhosen - the dirndl makes my bum look big (I wear Lederhosen etc every year because I can't get into my Bavarian G'friends dirndls)

Plenty of places to buy outfits. A couple of shops "In Tal" which is the street between Marienplatz and Isartor. C&A in Marienplatz also do a large selection

Chicago, Illinois
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5. Re: Oktoberfest Questions

Thanks a lot for your help guys. Really appreciate it!!

Amsterdam, The...
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6. Re: Oktoberfest Questions

I have done this trip numerous times by car for visiting the Oktoberfest ( I live near Amsterdam). If your lucky you can do it in 8 hours (or six if you drive 200 km/hour), but I have also had some bad experiences where the drive took me 12 hours, also on sundays. Be careful on the autobahn though, if you're not used to it, it can be dangerous. Especially when you switch to the left lane, as there always might be a Porsche coming with 280 km/ hour, and he expects you to give way. Or there can be a sudden traffic jam, and you have to brake like crazy. This year I am flying though. Check it out too, Lufthansa is selling roundtrips AMS-MUC for 99,- euro

It would be great if you could make it early, as sunday evening is a great evening for the Oktoberfest, probably the one with the best atmosphere.

BTW I am planning a group visit to the BMW factory for tuesday sept. 18. If you are interested I can add you to the reservation request?

5.) Will we be 'obnoxious Americans' if we all wear lederhosen and dirndls?

No, you will look great, and people will appreciate your effort. Anyway it is much better than wearing fraternity shirts or something like that,

Munich, Germany
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7. Re: Oktoberfest Questions

As i am owning a Trachten shop within munic i can tell you that nowadays Dirndl and Leathertrousers will be a kind of costume for all people who want to celebrate together within octoberfest. Its usual also for tourists if they wear dirndl and leathertrousers. But to avoid some faults you should buy dirndl in kneelenght - no mini dirndl style over the knee and the men should avoid to go for cheap ebay leathertrousers. Everybody will see that this is a fake. Normal prices in dirndldresses are from 60 EUR upwards. Leathertrouser in original style you will get from 90 EUR. Inside the city around marienplatz and hauptbahnhof are mostly tourist traps and they sell cheap costumes which are more fancy like normally dirndls are - avoid neon colours - mostly these are from inida or pakistan and not at all what a german lady would wear. If you need some assistance you can visit us at Trachtenrausch munic.

U.K.
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8. Re: Oktoberfest Questions

1,

You've had the answers but IMO on first night I'd take the opportunity to check out the old town of Munich. Many visit for Oktoberfest and don't take time in the city, its great, personally I can only take one night of Tents activities, I prefer the bars, halls and beer gardens in town so don't miss that part of Munich by only going to the fair grounds.

2,

I've done the drive a few times, well from just south of Amsterdam anyway.

It is very traffic dependent. It's about 800km so without traffic 7 hrs, best allow 10 to be sure.

Also Ger Holland is right about that late stretch of Autobahn.

I've driven at 120mph on the two lane carriageway to be constantly flashed from a mile back, then 'passed' in the blink of an eye by a Porsche or Merc.

Some go way too fast for such a narrow road in places and the police Porches literally fly past you catching dangerous drivers at incredible speeds.

5,

You see all sorts, the local Muncheners look fabulous the visitors tend to look ill fitting and uncomfortable but nobody cares :-)

Stoofer

Munich, Germany
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9. Re: Oktoberfest Questions

Regarding driving on the Autobahn. Never, ever, undertake on German roads. If caught you will be fined heavily. At worst you could cause an accident. Drive as fast as you feel in control. However, the motorways in the southern 2/3rds of germany rarely allow all out pace due to the eastern european trucks etc. Think about an average of 130 km/h and that would be realistic at best. If you cross over at Duisburg into Germany there is usually building sites or accidents in this area. So try and avoid the Rhine/Ruhr centres.

Amsterdam, The...
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10. Re: Oktoberfest Questions

If you take the route along Arnhem-Frankfurt-Nürnberg (A3), you will have some good stretches with 3 lanes where you can go pretty fast!

The A61 is sometimes less busy, but has only two lanen.

For a rental car, try to get one that runs on diesel fuel, it saves a lot of money!