Attraction Review: Oktoberfest – What’s All The Hype About? 6 Things You Should Know From A Local

by Kerwin McKenzie on August 26, 2017


The first time I heard about Oktoberfest, I had no idea what it was. So eventually, in 2011 I decided to go find out what all the hype is about. I was even more confused as it started in September and not October, I’m sure you are too :-).



Beer steins Oktoberfest Munich, Germany


2016 is the 183rd time they are doing this. I won’t go into the history, but you can read about it here if you care to. In short, its a party that started back in 1810 in October as a wedding festival after the then Crown Prince Ludwig, who later became King Ludwig I, married Princess Therese of Saxony-Hildburghausen. Aha! Got it.
Date: September 17, 2016 – October 3, 2016
Train: Every S Bahn to Hackerbrücke or Subway U4/U5 to Theresienwiese
Nearest Airport: Munich International, Munich Germany (MUC)
Airport To The City: Take the S Bahn, it takes 40-45 minutes; alternatively you can take a taxi for 60 EUR

I have a few friends in Germany and one of them that lives in Munich have these tips for you:

  1. Don’t go as its really expensive 🙂 –  He’s kidding about the not going part, but not about it being really expensive. As its a festival be prepared to shell out some bucks. With the Euro at ($1.12 to 1 EUR), your dollar will go a little farther this year. When I went in 2011 the steins (beer mugs) was 10 EUR a pop! So brace yourself. Ensure that you use an ATM to get money rather than change at a currency exchange place as you’ll more than likely get a better exchange rate. Also if asked if you prefer to be charged in USD or EUR choose EUR as you will get a better exchange rate when the transaction hits your bank.
  2. Roller Coaster Riders Oktoberfest Munich, GermanyIf you are thinking of trying a roller coaster, do so before you go to a beer tent. I actually did the roller coaster before the tents indeed. This one is common sense though, no throwing up while on the roller coaster please.
  3. If you can avoid it, don’t go on the weekends unless you have a reservations or are coming in the early morning. The crowds is insane on weekends. People from all over Germany comes to this event and of course on weekends they are free from work, so the crowds are more. And I’ll tell you there is a huge crowd.
  4. Go at midday. This one speaks for itself. Not sure why, but he says there are less people there. Maybe they are having lunch elsewhere :-).
  5. Make sure you’ve eaten enough as the beer is strong. Yes please eat before drinking. Typically, once you enter a beer hause, you’ll stay there and just drink, sing and be entertained. They do serve food, but its pricey, so be prepared. And have cash to buy your beer.
  6. In terms of choosing a tent to go, its a matter of taste, so pick a tent with the beer you like. When I went, I was just standing outside one of the tents and two guys came by, said hello and invited me to their tent. I had way too much fun. They were a bunch of local college students who had come in for the day.


Hippodrom Tent Oktoberfest Munich, Germany


Where Am I Going To Stay?

Hotels are either going to be packed and/or overpriced and more than likely sold out. Augsburg is a town close by, so you can try finding a place there if you cannot find anything in the city itself. But use Google Maps, find a town with train service and see if you can find a place to stay there.

You can also try hostels as well, but their prices will be a little higher during Oktoberfest. There’s also some Airbnb options and HotelTonight (App download required and use my code kmckenzie15, to get $25 off your first hotel booking and I will get a $25 credit as well. So we both win.).

Plus you can use this hotel booking widget to check for rooms.


Flights To/From Munich, Germany (MUC)


With that said, getting to Munich by plane during the Oktoberfest time period is tricky despite the many nonstop U.S. gateways into Munich. But I’m here to help you over that hump. So here is a list of nonstop flights to/from North America. Note that you can pretty much get to Munich nonstop from any of the major European hubs. So if any of these nonstops are full, then fly to a major European city and then take the train or plane to Munich:

Flights from North America to Munich, Germany (MUC)

MEX10:40MUC5:10 Next Day11H30MLufthansa (LH521 / 346)
IAH16:25MUC9:50 Next Day10H25MUnited (UA102 / 763)
ATL16:36MUC7:50 Next Day9H15MDelta Air Lines (DL130 / 76W)
LAX17:05MUC13:30 Next Day11H25MLufthansa (LH453 / 346)
IAD17:30MUC7:50 Next Day8H20MUnited (UA106 / 777)
JFK17:55MUC7:55 Next Day8H00MLufthansa (LH411 / 346)
EWR17:35MUC7:40 Next Day8H05MUnited (UA30 / 763)
ORD18:05MUC9:50 Next Day8H45MUnited (UA952 / 777)
PHL18:40MUC8:55 Next Day8H15MUS Airways (US716 / 333)
YVR18:35MUC13:40 Next Day10H05MLufthansa (LH477 / 346)
CLT18:35MUC9:35 Next Day9H00MLufthansa (LH429 / 333)
YYZ20:25MUC10:05 Next Day7H40MAir Canada (AC846 / 77L)
EWR20:05MUC10:00 Next Day7H55MLufthansa (LH413 / 346)
YUL20:20MUC9:50 Next Day7H30MLufthansa (LH475 / 333)
SFO20:45MUC17:05 Next Day11H20MLufthansa (LH459 / 346)
ORD21:20MUC13:05 Next Day8H45MLufthansa (LH435 / 346)
IAD22:30MUC12:45 Next Day8H15MLufthansa (LH415 / 333)
YYZ23:05MUC13:00 Next Day7H55MLufthansa (LH495 / 333)

Flights from Munich, Germany (MUC) to North America

Departure Arrival DurationAirlines
MUC9:30IAH14:2011H50MUnited (UA160/763)
MUC10:15DTW14:009H45MDelta Air Lines (DL23/764)
MUC10:55ATL15:3010H35MDelta Air Lines (DL131/764)
MUC11:40IAD15:009H20MUnited (UA107/ 777)
MUC11:50YYZ14:308H40MAir Canada (AC847 / 788)
MUC12:00LAX15:1512H15MLufthansa (LH452 / 346)
MUC12:05JFK15:059H00MLufthansa (LH410 / 346)
MUC12.15CLT16:2010H05MLufthansa (LH428 / 333)
MUC12:15PHL15:309H15MUS Airways (US717 / 333)
MUC12:20ORD15:109H50MUnited (UA953/ 777)
MUC12:30EWR15:409H10MUnited (UA31/763)
MUC15:30YVR16:5510H25MLufthansa (LH476 / 333)
MUC15:35IAD19:009H25MLufthansa (LH414 / 333)
MUC15:50YYZ18:509H00MLufthansa (LH494 / 333)
MUC15:40ORD18:259H45MLufthansa (LH434 / 346)
MUC16:00SFO18:5511H55MLufthansa(LH458 / 346)
MUC16:10YUL18:408H30MLufthansa (LH474 / 333)
MUC16:15EWR19:209H05MLufthansa (LH412 / 346)
MUC22:25MEX04:00 Next Day12H35MLufthansa (LH520 / 346)
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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

avatar Bruce T. September 12, 2014 at 10:19 pm

I took my family to Oktoberfest last year and had a great time. One option to consider for traveling to and fro is through Frankfurt. We flew into Munich but came home through FRA. The cost of a one-way car rental was reasonable, and space availability was much better for non-rev travel. As a bonus, I got to drive on the Autobahn!


avatar Kerwin McKenzie September 13, 2014 at 3:16 am

Good deal Bruce.
The FRA option definitely will work.
If you care not to drive the train will work as well.



avatar Tammy Smart September 18, 2014 at 7:18 pm

We are going to Oktoberfest for the first time this year. And we booked our stay thru (thanks Kerwin for informing us about that earlier!). Also just as an FYI: CLT-MUC-CLT on Lufthansa, the flights are still wide open. This is in part due to US Airways moving to the One World Alliance, thus leaving LH on the Star Alliance with no connecting passengers from US Airways. We are planning on using LH for our trip. Danke


avatar Kerwin McKenzie September 19, 2014 at 12:16 am

Excellent news Tammy. Glad we were able to help in anyway. I’ll see if I can pass that information along to our readers.
Good luck and have loads of fun.



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