Sep 6, 2017

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Oktoberfest 2017 last-minute guide

Oktoberfest 2017 last-minute guide

If you’re one of those boundless optimistic types who is not put off by incredibly pricey flights, a patent lack of hotel rooms, and all the other signs that, goddam, the Oktoberfest 2017 is going to be packed, read on. Here is our guide to (not) planning your last-minute trip to Munich for the world’s premier beer festival – which, as a panicked look at the countdown reveals, begins in just 10 days.

If you believe you can fly…
Forget late-night trawls through everyone’s favourite booking engines in the folorn hope that those last £30 Ryanair tickets are still to be found if only you google “Munich flights” long enough. Let us break it to you gently: they’re not.

The smarter option is to stay at ground-level – and even below, because the Channel Tunnel is your portal to the continent and you can make it to Munich in a day by car, bus, or train. Even if (run by the German national rail provider) doesn’t have any of its cheap saver fares from London left, it might still work out cheaper to just turn up at St. Pancras and buy to Lille or Paris or Brussels on the day and to try your luck from there; a look at will give you an idea of which trains still have seats. A much-neglected option comes in the form of German coach operators such as MeinFernbus, whose cheap busses are, while grindingly slow, comfortable and equipped with sockets and wifi.

Last-minute Oktoberfest 2017: where to stay

A few years back, we suggested avoiding the crazy Oktoberfest hotel prices by camping or getting container accommodation; then, the year before last, we prized AirBnB’s vastly increased number of Munich hosts. Last year, even these options caught up price-wise, too, as demand reliably outstrips supply. Our only advice now is to be extremely flexible about where you stay: the ends of the U3, 6, and 5 metro lines are still cheap and within direct reach of the Theresienweise. Then just check everything – from hotels to Airbnb to Couchsurfing to camping – and opt for whatever you can afford.


Smart choice: ordering online

Order your dirndl and lederhosen online
As unbelievable as it may sound, even at this stage of the game – with only 10 days to go until the first keg is tapped – it is far smarter to order Oktoberfest clothes online. After all, when you can get your costume delivered from Germany straight to a UK address in two working days, and that’s got to be better than following every other tourist into the same cheap outlets for lederhosen to buy a lower-quality product – all the while losing valuable drinking time!

Tents at Oktoberfest 2017
You’ll here all sorts of rubbish about how you should have reserved your table months back and how packed the tents are. Certainly, if you try to get into one of the big tents mid-afternoon on a Friday when the world and its wife has left work early and is in the mood for a drink, you’ve got a problem. If, however, you turn up to the tents early (around 9am) and head straight for the unreserved tables near the bandstand, you’re almost guaranteed a seat: these areas are kept specifically for spontaneous types like you. After all, it’s you and your sense of fun that makes things interesting – so Prost! and see you in a couple of weeks’ time!

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