Few experiences compare to the beer drinking that happens at Oktoberfest aka Wiesn in Munich. Perhaps tailgating for college football is comparable, except for there is no Coors Light in the tents in the southern German state of Bavaria. München is Germany’s third largest city; around 1.5 million people live there and another 200,000 come in daily to pound liters of lager. It would be easy to keep on hitting that lame Oktoberfest at the only German bierhaus in your town – or you can rally the crew for a trip to the one and only in Wiesn in Munich. Digest these words of wisdom and maybe… just maybe you will survive Oktoberfest without scrapes, bruises or lost items.

Consider the Chain Gang
More than a thousand cell phones, hundreds of wallets and at least one set of dentures are lost each year at Oktoberfest. A lost cell phone or wallet is a disaster, losing your cell phone or wallet in a foreign country is much worse – it’s a nightmare. As insane as this sounds, consider a wallet or phone security system to ensure you get home with your essentials. There are several strap, chain and lanyard options available online and it’s much better than the alternative.

Try the White Powder, Do It!
It’s snorted and it will help to keep you going, but it’s not cocaine – it’s glucose and menthol like snuff. The locals call it Wiesn koks (Oktoberfest cocaine), and it’s also called Wiesn Pulver (powder) or Bavarian cocaine. Try to resist the lame Tony Montana moment, which is unlikely because after two liters aka “masses,” approximately seven or eight American beers… restraint is out the window. As the evening transitions to the night, don’t be surprised to see your new friends from Australia or Canada with Wiesn koks all over their face. Look around the tent – they’re not the only one.

Pace Bro, Pace
The ultimate standard of excellence for Oktoberfest beer consumption in a day is 10 masses, which is 10 liters, that’s approximately 28 beers. However, unlike Bud Light which is 4.3-percent alcohol, Oktoberfest beer is 6-percent… this is a huge difference. Here is a little secret: consider mixing in a “Radler,” which is half-beer and half-lemonade. Even the locals do it so do not be ashamed. And for the love of god, don’t forget to eat and be sure to each a huge meal. Go for the roast chicken, potato salad, bratwurst and pretzels. The food is just as much of a reason to be there and it can save your day. At all cost avoid the hill of shame, a grass hill behind the tents – that’s where the wounded go to rest, it’s a pathetic sight to see.

Dress the Part
Lederhosen is definitely a good idea! It doesn’t matter if you are German, Polish, Chinese or American – everyone wears Lederhosen. The combination of leather and cotton garments was the garb of the farmer – today they represent the people of South Germany and symbolize Oktoberfest. You can get the head-to-toe authentic look for around $200 online and consider this: for the rest of your life, once a year you can go to that local lame Oktoberfest party with your Lederhosen and tell everyone how it really goes down in Munich.

Six Months In Advance on Everything
Here are the key components to Oktoberfest: flight, hotel, Lederhosen and table reservation at one of the 14 big tents. More than six million people come to Oktoberfest each year from all over the world: Australia, Brazil, Italy, UK, Canada, Scandinavia and America. The tents are packed on the weekdays, they are super-packed on the weekend – consider two or three days in the midweek for better deals. Consider this: Monday through Wednesday in Munich and then head north to Cologne, Dusseldorf and Berlin for the weekend. Also, be sure to check out several tents and walk around.

In closing, be sure to learn these words because you will hear this song at least 30 times a day:

Ein Prosit, ein Prosit der Gemütlichkeit
Ein Prosit, ein Prosit der Gemütlichkeit

Oktoberfest is an experience you will most likely enjoy the second time, once you have a bit of experience under your belt. Some lessons can only be learned from losses and frankly, Oktoberfest does not lose.

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