Oktoberfest Rules!

by Claire Valenty on October 22, 2010

in Gifts & Celebration Etiquette

gift oktoberfest etiquette

Oktoberfest is a German celebration held world-wide each September. To find out why something with “October” in its title is celebrated in September, as well as what you can do to ensure you’ve got the low down on how to properly celebrate Oktoberfest, read this article!

Whether you are celebrating Oktoberfest in Munich, New York City or anywhere else in the world, Oktoberfest rules! And there are some Oktoberfest rules to follow, too!

1) Leave no man behind! Beer halls, which is where most Oktoberfest celebrations take place, are usually filled to capacity or beyond with people who have been drinking all day. And if you are at Oktoberfest in Munich, there is literally beer tent after beer tent to check out. Getting separated is easy; finding each other is impossible. Make sure before your group even heads out that you have a designated place and time to meet if anyone gets lost. It will save a lot of fighting later on over who ditched who!

2) Be a lover, not a fighter. While at Oktoberfest in Munich, I was beyond amazed that a fight didn’t break out every two minutes. These people were from all over the world, bumping into each other, drinking beer from 9 am until midnight and I did not see a single fight. For someone from Orange County where an accidental shoulder check can get you punched in the face, it was like heaven. Remember the Oktoberfest spirit and keep your temper in check. Everyone is just there to have a good time!

3) Cash is king. Although some of the beer tents are starting to accept plastic, these places operate like an assembly line with beer being dropped off at the table and cash being picked up. Plastic slows everything down and ruins the fun. And don’t forget to tip your beer maid! Especially if you’re in Munich – if you’re in a beer tent, your beer maid is the only way you’re getting served. And if she doesn’t like you, you don’t get to drink!

4) Don’t be afraid to join in the singing! Even if you don’t know the words, no one else minds!Besides, they play the classic German songs enough that you should be able to catch on by the end of the night!

And, if you are wondering why it’s called “Oktoberfest” but is celebrated in September, we’ve got the answer! Oktoberfest came about to celebrate Prince Ludwig’s marriage to Therese von Sachsen-Hildburghausen in October. Over time, as the weather in September is a bit warmer, the festival was moved up, allowing the festival goers a better climate to drink beer in. Also, as German unification day is Oct. 3rd, moving the festival to earlier in the year allowed it to end right around this same time.


Photo: flickr/blgrssby

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