Last updated: 09:00 PM ET, Wed August 17 2016

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  • Worldwide Scott | August 17, 2016 9:00 PM ET

    A 6 Pack of Tips and Tricks For Oktoberfest in Munich

    A 6 Pack of Tips and Tricks For Oktoberfest in Munich

    Photo by Worldwide Scott

    Despite what your local bar and grill may have just posted on their Facebook page, there is only one Oktoberfest, and it takes place every year in Munich, Germany.

    And it may just be the funnest thing in the entire world.

    Seriously, where else will you find tens of thousands of people under one tent drinking, singing, dancing, and most importantly — getting along with each other? Not many places, that's for sure.

    This year the festival runs from Sep. 17-Oct. 3, and if knocking back a few steins of beer at Oktoberfest is near the top of your bucket list, here are a few tips and tricks I've learned over the years to help make your trip extra special.

    1. Go on a Weekday

    Oktoberfest is going to be a “pinch me” type time regardless of the day of the week you choose to go, but if you attend on a weekend, the crowds are going to be borderline unbearable. As tempting as it is to be there for opening weekend, just avoid it. I promise that the fun bands and the beer will be there on Monday.

    READ MORE: Where Is the World’s Biggest Wine Festival?

    2. Don't Make a Table Reservation — Just Get There Early

    While the weekdays are certainly home to less crowds than weekends, festive and friendly throngs are still the general rule. A lot of people will tell you that you must have a table reservation at Oktoberfest — that's hogwash, because around a third of each Oktoberfest tent is completely open seating.

    The trick here, though, is that you have to get there early to make sure you get a spot. It's strictly first-come-first-served, so once you are seated, you could in theory sit there all day, and most people do. It's extra important to have a seat, too, because beer will only typically be served to those parking some part of their body on a bench. 

    3. Rotate in a Radler

    When you are spending all day drinking beer, it may be tempting to take a break. Obviously this is not allowed, but you are allowed to order a Radler at some point to mix up your consumption. Radlers are half beer/half lemonade and will go a long way to helping you see closing time.

    4. Eat, Eat, and Be Merry

    Along the same lines as the Radler, why not mix in some food at some point? Obviously, you are legally required to buy a pretzel as big as your head, pose for a picture with it, then eat it, but may I also humbly suggest a roast chicken (hendl), pork knuckle or even some smoked fish? You won't regret any food decision in the tents and the fuel will keep you dancing and singing all night. Speaking of that...

    5. Pack Your Singing Shoes

    While drinking beer is a big part of the fun in the Oktoberfest tents, music is the star of the show in the afternoons and evenings. The oompah-style bands blend classic hits and modern music with a Bavarian twist, and those that sit on their hands or stay quiet do so at their own peril. If you really want to impress your fellow revelers, memorize the lyrics to "Country Roads," "Hey Baby (If You'll be My Girl)" and a wacky song called "Fliegerlied" (video below) ahead of time — just trust me.

    6. Dress the Part

    While at first I definitely thought it was sort of weird for tourists to sport the traditional dress of dirndls and lederhosen, the more I attended Oktoberfest, the more I realized that it was totally cool — and really fun. You can pick up the garb all over Munich, with the C&A department store being a popular spot for typical checked shirts for guys and dirndls for girls.

    READ MORE: The Stuttgart Beer Festival: Look Out Oktoberfest

    Just remember, though, that this is traditional garb of the region, and you should never do anything to disrespect it — like leave a half-drunk beer on the table.

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Worldwide Scott The Adventures of Worldwide Scott

Worldwide Scott Born in the U.S.A like Springsteen but trying to see the world like Pitbull, Worldwide Scott is the voice behind the hard-hitting travel site of the same name. Employing a groundbreaking strategy of visiting destinations, coming home, and then writing things about them on the internet, Worldwide Scott only tackles the tough questions that other writers wouldn't dare touch: Is travelling fun? Are there pretty places in the world? Do people in other countries wear clothes? Does Europe really exist? And if so, what's the beer like there? Stick around, he's going places.
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