How To Dress For Oktoberfest:
Almost everyone attending Oktoberfest in Munich dresses in traditional Bavarian outfits (trachten), so consider taking part yourself. Dressing in authentic clothing will help you blend in better, feel less like a tourist, and makes the whole Oktoberfest experience a lot more fun. Although over 85% of Oktoberfest visitors are German-speaking, as an American or forigener you can still feel the part by dressing up like a local. This clothing guide will ensure you know how to dress for Oktoberfest in Munich. Even outside of the Oktoberfest celebrations, we have been surprised to see how many people tend to dress up to go out around Munich no matter what time of year it is. As they say, When In Rome…
History of Oktoberfest Outfits:
In the 1500 and 1600s, traditional Bavarian outfits were everday facets of life for common people in Munich from going around town to even working in the fields. As the use of the traditional clothing started to fade in favor of the fashion of the 1800s, wealthy people from the city began to revive the old clothing out of a longing to capture the romantic feelings they got while visiting their country-side vacation homes. Groups of locals then slowly came together for a huge revival to make sure this part of Alpine culture stayed strong.
In 1835, the first Riflemen and Costume (Tracht) Parade was added to the Oktoberfest celebrations, and in 1883 they started the traditional costume association called the Traditional Custome Society (Trachtenverein). Today you will find that in upwards of 90% of visitors are dressed up on some level for Oktoberfest in Munich with most wearing full traditional outfits.
How Many People Really Dress Up? Around 90% of visitors will be dressed up on some level for Oktoberfest and over 75% will be wearing full traditional outfits. Keep in mind that vast majority of the over 6 million annual attendees are either from Bavaria (70%) or the rest of Germany (15%) so dressing up for Oktoberfest is the norm.
Can I Wear Normal Clothes? You definitely can wear regular clothes and still have a great time, but you will be missing out on a key piece of the Oktoberfest experience. Taking part will make you feel more involved, makes it even more fun, helps you to be in the moment, and it will make taking photos way better. If you are going to wear “normal” clothes, we do suggest staying away from tacky novelty t-shirts, or shirts with your city/country blazened across the front and instead consider wearing a checkered shirt with your jeans.
What Are The Outfits Called? Authentic outfits for Oktoberfest in Munich are called Tracht (Tra-oct). Women wear traditional dirndl (DEERN-dul) dresses while men wear leather lederhosen (LAY-der-hozen) shorts. There are dozens of fraternal folk groups that all have their own Tracht with specific ensemble elements, set color combinations, matching embroidery, and formal accessories.
Where Should I Buy My Outfit? With retail options from online stores and eBay to in-person retail outlets, there are tons of great options to find your Bavarian flavor regardless of your budget or style. Below we have a women’s and men’s guide on what you should consider for your Oktoberfest ensemble followed by our favorite places to shop at both in Munich and online.
There are thousands of variations in Women’s outfits for Oktoberfest ranging from traditional to modern. There is no “right way” to dress but usually you will want to wear a Bavarian dirndl dress that goes at least to your knees and comfortable shoes. Below is an overview guide of costume tips and ideas of the most essential elements for a woman’s Oktoberfest outfit.
1. Traditional Dirndls:
The staple of a woman’s outfit at Oktoberfest in Munich is a white blouse under a tight-fitting Bavarian dirndl (DEERN-dul) dress with an apron tied around it. A dirndl dress can come either all in one piece or in two pieces with a separate bodice and skirt. Because dirndls are meant to fit snugly around your sides, most dressmakers suggest that if you are in-between sizes you should consider getting the smaller of the two. An authentic dress for Oktoberfest will have some give to them both from the material and loosening the ties.
The dirndl has been used as a rural or peasant worker outfit and and housemaid uniform since Medieval times but started to become revived in urban fashion in the late-1800s. This was a big change compared to the first modern Oktoberfest in 1810 when most of the wealthy and urban women wore large hoop dresses that were popular at the time. Before this traditional revival, dresses at early Oktoberfests in Munich were more Gone With The Wind-style with tiny umbrellas than the classic Heidi look.
Today, modern dirndl dresses have continued to become very fashionable while maintaining their traditional roots. The once simple Bavarian dirndl dresses now have elaborate designs, endless color options, custom embellishments, and tons of flair. Even if you can’t afford a really expensive hand-made dirndl, you need should get a proper dress instead of a cheap looking beer girl Halloween costume.
We have a guide on where to shop at the bottom of this page, but the most popular brands of dirndl dresses in Munich are Stockerpoint, Krüger, and MarJo. A pretty decent dirndl dress set will cost anywhere from 70-150€, really high-end sets can be 250-600€, and custom tailored dirndls can be well over 1000€.
2. Dirndl Dress Length:
An authentic dirndl (DEERN-dul) dress for Oktoberfest can come in a few different lengths, but they usually go below the knees. The most traditional length option is the long dirndl (langdirndl) which goes to a little above your ankle, the middle length dirndl (mididirndl) will go anywhere from your shin to just below your knee, and the short dirndl (minidirndl) will stop a couple inches above your knee. Depending on the fullness of your dirndl skirt, you may opt for adding a petticoat or underskirt for extra volume and movement.
Overall it doesn’t really matter which of the three dirndl dress lengths you go with as all of them are common and acceptable, but most of the Bavarians go with one below the knees. The long dirndls can be a bit formal, a little warm, and the length can be restrictive for dancing or stepping over benches inside the tents. Because of this, we recommend the middle length option to most people and you can choose to go longer or shorter depending on your style.
It gets easy to spot the American girls in the tents as they are often the ones with the really short Halloween costume-style dresses only the length of a skimpy mini-skirt. Most American stores only keep these cheesy Halloween versions of beer girl costumes in stock, so for a more legit outfit you have to shop online (suggestions below) or in person when you get to Munich. If you really want to feel like you are dressing for Oktoberfest instead of a Halloween party, you should spend the extra couple euros and get a real dirndl set even if it is a shorter one.
If you have a shorter dress for Oktoberfest in Munich and the weather looks unseasonable cold, you can add a thicker pair of pantyhose pretty easily to stay warm. While most pantyhose are either natural colored or sheer, both solid black and white colors as well as bits of lace can be natural complements to the style of your dirndl dress for Oktoberfest.
3. Blouses & Bras:
Classic Dirndl blouses are normally white with covered shoulders and the cut of the neck depending on how much skin you want to show. The shape of the blouse opening around your décolletage (upper chest) is usually used to complement the typically square frame of the top of your dirndl bodice. The playful blouse opening options range from heart, diamond, or oval shapes, and even full coverage.
The most popular Oktoberfest blouses have short sleeves, a poofy shoulder, and vertical popped collar. This vertical collar can be stiff or ruffled and either option adds an extra noble feel to your outfit similar to Snow White. You can even choose between off the shoulder, peekaboo shoulder, or couture lace options depending on your style. Some of the more lacey options are also cut in a way to double as a mildly supportive bra if needed.
Although most women show a decent amount of their décolletage, younger girls tend to stay on the wholesome side while staying conservatively covered. Most adult women show quite a bit of cleavage at Oktoberfest, but it isn’t really because of the neckline of the blouse alone. This classic look is actually heavily aided from a special corset bra (mieder büstenhalter) which provides the pushup look you may have seen. These special bras provide a specific type of push and lift which can be a more difficult look to replicate than you think.
4. Aprons & Bow Placement:
An authentic dirndl dress will be wrapped in an apron (schürze) and tied with a bow (schleifen) on the front. Because dirndls started as everyday work outifts, the apron was important to keep the dress clean and free of wear. Aprons for dirndl dresses at Oktoberfest are usually either satin or cotton depending on the desired texture to fit your style.
The placement of your dirndl bow is very important as it tells people your relationship status:
- Left side if you’re single (ledig).
- Right side if you’re taken (vergeben) or married (verheiratet).
- In the middle if you are either a child (kindl) or a virgin (jungfrau).
- On your the back if you are either a waitress or widowed (verwitwet).
This bow placement also symbolizes the traditional seating arrangement for families in Catholic churches in Munich. The men would sit on the right, the women on the left, the children in front of them, and the eldery in the back.
Wedding rings are usually worn on the right hand in this part of Germany if at all, so proper placement of your dirndl bow can be very important. If you ever see advertisements selling dirndls the bow is usually on the dress’s left side meaning available.
5. Shoes For Oktoberfest:
The most common shoes are either standard ballerina flats or flat with a strap across the foot called a Mary Jane. The local Mary Janes are leather with a comfortable rubber sole plus cleated heels and toes to make noise while dancing. For most women deciding how to dress for Oktoberfest, flats and Mary Janes are best because they are very easy to pack in your luggage.
If you want to wear heels, most American-style stilettos can be hard to match to your dirndl and have way too thin of a heel to be practical at Oktoberfest. There is a perfect traditional looking alternative to stilettos called Dirndl pumps which have a thicker high heel and a classic buckle strap. These goatskin leather shoes are comfortable, provide a lot of support, are more stout, have great traction for beer-soaked floors, and will better match the Bavarian look. Expect a good pair of Dirndl pumps will cost around 50-80€, but you can wear them year round.
The third main footwear option that is popular for women to wear at Oktoberfest are sturdy leather ankle boots (Trachten Stiefelette). These seductive looking 80-120€ boots are very similar to the Dirndl pumps but they have a lace-up top going 2-5 inches above your ankle which can include a side zipper for easy access. There are surprisingly a lot of ankle boot variations from more formal to almost work boot styles. For authentic ankle boots, the five best brands to look for are Stockerpoint, Spieth & Wensky, Hirschkogel, Hailys, & Tamaris.
We suggest avoiding American cowboy boots as they aren’t Bavarian at all and can look awkward with a dirndl. You also need to avoid open-toed shoes because of the number of beer glasses that get broken at Oktoberfest in Munich. Even inside the more tame beer tents, the floors can get sloppy and messy making open-toed shoes a big safety issue.
Socks and pantyhose are also something to consider as far how they go with your shoes. With most flats and open top heels, you will likely have either pantyhose or a classic just-below-the-knee decorative knit sock. If you are wearing ankle boots a slouchy cotton sock with a lace frill on top is an excellent choice.
6. Purses & Bags For Oktoberfest:
As a rule of thumb, you really need to keep your purse for Oktoberfest in Munich as small as possible. Not only are large bags not allowed inside the beer tents, but giant purses just aren’t very practical. Tiny clutches may seem like a good idea, however, it can get pretty difficult to drink massive 1-liter glasses of beer while always having to hold your clutch.
The best bag option for Oktoberfest is to bring a small crossbody purse. This will keep your bag small, secure, and handsfree. You can find tons of decorative purses with crossbody straps themed for Oktoberfest or made to match any dirndl dress. Some of the handbags are made out or lederhosen material or shaped like the gingerbread heart cookies which are popular at Oktoberfest in Munich.
They even make dirndl wallets (dirndltasche) which are made to match the material of your dress and attach directly onto the tie on the front of your apron. These dirndl wallets have a very slim profile and are typically just a little bit bigger than 6 inches (15cm) tall by 6 inches (15cm) wide. This is the perfect size to hold your money or wallet, your ID, a smartphone, a minimal amount of touch-up makeup. We have had no problem also fitting a little bit of toilet paper, a plastic mini-shot of booze, and small battery pack in a Dirndltasche. Some people bring their passports, but normally a driver’s license is fine, and you won’t normally get ID’d unless you look pretty young as the drinking age is lower in German at only 16.
7. Hair, Hats, & Fascinators:
What lady doesn’t spend as much time planning out their hair as they do their outfit? At Oktoberfest, your hair can be the final piece to really make your ensemble come together. The classic Hiedi look is to have pigtails (or twin ponytails) secured with pieces of ribbon to match your dirndl. We often see women who even braid small meadow flowers, mini roses, or pieces of ribbon into their hair which can look great in modest amounts. Being more juvenile with your hair is totally fine as you can always balance it with a more adult dress style.
While it is mainly men that wear traditional wool & felt Alpine hats, they have become a lot more common with women as they now come in many colors. The women’s hats are a little narrower than the men’s and are often dressed up with a long flamboyant peacock or pheasant feather. Like in England, fascinators have also very popular at Oktoberfest. Fascinators for Oktoberfest range from colored feathers secured by an edelweiss-shaped pin to mini-versions of Alpine hiking hats. Coordinating your headgear with your jewelry (schmuck) can be a great extra touch. Because the modern Oktoberfest started as a Bavarian royal wedding celebration in 1810, a fascinator can be a pretty fitting accessory as you are partially celebrating a marriage.
8. Jewelry & Accessories:
Adding fun jewelry (schmuck) to your outfit is a must when decided how to dress for Oktoberfest in Munich. The most common accessory is a Weisn necklace or ribbon choker to match your dirndl. A pewter edelweiss flower is a classy way to dress up your choker or necklace, but we also see ones adorned with stags (deer), lions (for Bavaria), pretzels, and beer steins. Bracelets usually follow the same theme as your dirndl also and are often ribbon, leather, or metal. You can even use a short handkerchief scarf which you can move from your neck to your wrist at any point to change your look up on the fly.
Edelweiss symbols are important in Alpine culture and Oktoberfest jewelry as it is a flower that only grows high up in the mountains. Young men would sometimes have to risk their lives to pick one for a girl so receiving one was a big deal. It is now illegal to pick edelweiss flower as they are protected, but you can still have a metal one on your necklace.
To dress up your dirndl itself the coolest accessory is to add traditional chains filled with hanging coins to the front of your bodice. There is just something timeless about the decorative chain (mieder) look and it can be a great way for husbands and wives to have a matching accessory. Often pieces of someone’s chain are handed down through generations as family heirlooms. If you are on a tighter budget you can give your dirndl some flair with a playful Oktoberfest clothespin (wiesn klammern -or- glupperl) which we explain below.
Since about 2015 we have been seeing a large increase in the use of temporary flash tattoos as an accessory when decideing how to dress for Oktoberfest. These foil tattoos press on easily and have a metalic shine that looks cool with the light reflecting on them. You can get them themed for Oktoberfest or for general hunting and deer icons which fit in well at Wiesn in Munich. They are also ser cheap as you can buy them on eBay or from Alpinewahnsinn (website) for only a couple of dollars.
We often get asked about bringing an umbrella as an accessory if it rains, but that is a bad idea. Chances are you will see a 10-day forecast before leaving for Oktoberfest in Munich and if it looks like rain then we suggest bringing a small plastic travel poncho. These disposable raincoats cost less than $1, take up almost no luggage space, and can be discarded once you get into the beer tents if needed to keep your hands free.
9. Jackets & Sweaters:
A classic Bavarian woman’s traditional jacket (Trachtenjacke) comes in various thicknesses, but all are cut to create a feminine silhouette. The waist of the wool blazers tapered inward and the torso is quite shorter than the arms. Most women’s jackets for Oktoberfest have a stiff collar (not folded) and have a neckline cut of either covered or open.
Just as popular as the traditional blazer jackets, cardigan sweaters are a must for anyone looking to put their outfit over the top. These cotton outer layers are perfect for chilly Fall days or evenings. The cardigan can be knit of solid, have cuts that mimic the traditional jackets, and often have flowered embroidery. Really good jackets start at around 150 while the cardigans are 50-80.
10. Female Lederhosen:
Becoming more and more common, especially with international visitors, are the female lederhosen (LAY-der-hozen) shorts. This high-cut version of the traditional leather shorts come with suspenders and can be seen as very sexy if you have the legs to pull it off. Lederhosen for women tend to have a little more of a softer suede-like texture to them compared to ones for men. Sizing isn’t very flexible with lederhosen so you should try them on before you buy.
11. Wiesn Glupperl:
What the heck is a Wiesn Glupperl? Also known as a Wiesn Klammern (vee-sun klam-ern), it is a common wooden clothespin decorated with some Oktoberfest (wiesn) flair and your first name scorched on with a wood burner. They are a little tacky, but very fun and a great icebreaker. Even outside of Oktoberfest you can find clothespins used as nametags around Bavaria at both weddings and corporate events.
Younger Germans often wear Wiesn Klammern at Oktoberfest to be humorous and use funny fake names or dirty words instead of their real names. There are stands at Oktoberfest selling Wiesn Glupperl and they will etch on your name or a funny phrase. You can even buy them custom ordered within 15 minutes inside the Oktoberfest tents. HERE is an example. We love to get out clothespin custom made when we arrive at the Oktoberfest tents, however, you can pre-order from places lie Weisn Grupperl Shop (website) if you want to incluinde them as small gifts for the people you are traveling with.
Men’s Oktoberfest outfits are a little more straightforward than the ladies as the options tend to stay a bit more traditional. A typical guys outfit at Oktoberfest will have a button-up shirt (either white or checkered), leather Lederhosen shorts with suspenders, an Alpine hat, classic socks, and sturdy Bavarian shoes. When you take it up a notch, there are extra options for hat accessories, jackets, and vests for Oktoberfest which we explain in detail below. As a rule of thumb, we suggest spending the extra euros for an authentic outfit over a cheap Halloween costume-style one.
1. Lederhosen Options & Sizing:
There are number traditional Oktoberfest pants styles each with a unique name. Lederhosen (LAY-der-hozen) are the main Bavarian-style leather shorts that stop slightly above-the-knee and come in either dark or light brown. Plattlerhosen (or Miesbacher) go closer to the knee and are typically black leather instead of brown. Bundhosen (or kniebund) are a little longer below-the-knee Capri length pants that often have ties at the bottom. Most pairs of leather lederhosen pants will come with bone or animal horn buttons and some are even Gauplattlerhosen which means they have more decorative embroidery (stickerei).
Traditional lederhosen trousers run a bit tight and are stiff in the thighs at first, but have drawstrings in the back to give you more room around the waist. The leather of the thighs will soften and stretch a little with use, however, if you aren’t going to have time to really break them in before Oktoberfest you should consider getting them one pant size big.
Local Bavarian men typically only buy one really nice pair of custom-fit lederhosen as an adult and rarely wash them which adds to the look. The more expensive lederhosen are often hand-crafted out of deer skin and sewn by a genuine Lederhosen maker (Säckler). Deerskin is a very durable and robust material that softer to the touch than the cowhide which are used on cheaper Lederhosen. Goat hide can be an affordable option that is one of the strongest but Elk hide is the most prestigious and expensive.
You really want to avoid buying Halloween costume style lederhosen as they are horrible to wear. They may be cheap, but the Halloween costume lederhosen for Oktoberfest fit horribly, are made poorly, have thin fabric, and typically lack pockets. As the name Lederhosen (Leather Pants) implies, all authentic pairs are made out of real leather while the costume ones are thin cotton. So not only with you look silly, but the costume style lederhosen also aren’t very functional compared to a traditional leather pair. If you aren’t willing to spend the money on a properly fitting pair (100-200 euros) then you are better off attending Oktoberfest in jeans and a Bavarian checkered shirt than wearing a cheap Halloween costum with no pockets.
2. Traditional Hats:
While you don’t have to wear a hat, if you do, the wool or felt Alpine and Bavarian hats (Tirolerhüte) are by far the way to dress for Oktoberfest. A real Alpine hat will be soft to the touch, are slightly flexible, and are sized very comfortable. This high quality is a far cry from the cheap Halloween costume style hats which are usually one-size-fits-all and are either way too stiff or overly limp. While some very well made dense wool hats can be over 200 euros, you can expect to spend on average about $30-50 on an authentic hat for Oktoberfest.
When you see groups of Bavarian men together they often have the same hat as there are many faterneral clubs in Munich where the members dress the same. The most traditional hats amoung these local groups with be quite rounde and flat with a low profile. We prefer the taller Alpine hiker-style hat for both the look and because it gives better surface area to attach souveneir pins and decorative featers.
In addition to traditional Alpine hats at Oktoberfest, you will see many people also wearing floppy farmer hats (sepplhut) as well as some with beer mug-shaped hats, Harry Potter wizard-style hats, and even some chicken drumstick hats. We have yet to ever see a local one of the silly hats. If you really want to dress like a local for Oktoberfest you need to go with a traditional Alpine hat and not the tacky touristy hats.
3. Hat Pins & Feathers:
A standard hat (hut) for Oktoberfest will typically have a single pheasant feather on the side for decoration. Upgrading this feather to either an ostrich, peacock, or a pinned-on bundle of feathers is a good way to make it look like you didn’t just buy your hat on your walk to the beer tents. Traditionally, the bigger the feather or tuft of hair on your hat the wealthier you were, as it is a sign of high standing.
If you want to get really fancy, you can replace the feathers on your hat with a brush made out of hair from either a European goat (Chamois) or a wild boar. Emperor Maximilian I was the first noble person to wear a brush of hair (Radlbart) on his hat back in the 1400s. Later in the 1700s, Archduke Johann of Austria made wearing huge plumes of hairs known as a Hat Beard (Gamsbart) popular. We love how the hand-made Gamsbarts’ 200-300 hairs bounce and flow as you move your head.
It has also long been a custom to add pewter pins (Volksmarching) to the side of your Oktoberfest hat based on what cities you have visited and interests you have such as hiking or hunting. As you add pins to your hat it becomes a statement piece to help tell your story and the places you have been. These pins are both a great conversation starter, but also an important way to have some stake in the sentimental value of your hat so you are less likely to lose it.
4. Shirts For Oktoberfest:
Bavarian trachten shirts (Hemd) are the most common style of shirt. These shirts can be a solid color, but are usually a plaid pattern checkered in either red or blue. When choosing your shirt, remember that white and blue are the official colors of Bavaria, but you can also go in a more bold direction with your color choice if it fits your style. Tradationally trachten shirt for the working class would be white on the weekday, pink on the weekends, and would be extra long so they chould also be untucked and used as a bedtime nightshirt.
While trachten shirts at Oktoberfest appear to be short-shelved, most are actually long sleeved but rolled up. A hidden feature on these traditional Oktoberfest shirts is the arm button which lets you roll up the sleeves and hold it in place. Recently it has become more common to get a slim-fitting trachten shirt compared to the older baggy ones but the handy sleeve button is on both styles.
Whatever you do, don’t wear a t-shirt to Oktoberfest or you will feel like a stereotypical tourist. The minimum effort you should put in is at least jeans and a checkered shirt, but avoid t-shirts, soccer jerseys, or corny shirts with the city/country you are from plastered all over it.
5. Lederhosen Suspenders:
Traditional suspenders (hosenträger) are the most classic lederhosen look and with come with your even the short fit well enough to stay up on their own. The front strap breastplate (bruststueck) will form an H across your chest while the straps should be crisscrossed on your back. An embroidered front strap on your suspenders is a good way to add some flair to your outfit if you are working with a basic ensemble.
If you have an extra 50-80 euros in your budget you can get a very classy Oktoberfest vest and wear it in place of your lederhosen suspenders which are removalable. Suspenders on a high-quality set of tracht will also be easy to adjust for your height or to swap out the cheat plate, while the cheap Halloween costume lederhosen doesn’t adjust at all. This problem with cheap lederhosen can be super annoying as not only will they fit poorly, but the strap will constantly be falling off your shoulders. In short buy a real set of lederhosen for Oktoberfest over the costume-style.
6. Traditional Shoes:
Bavarian men wear traditional shoes called Half Shoe (Haferlschuhe) which are a mix between a dress shoe and work boot. The ankle high Half Shoes (Haferlschuhe) often have rubber cleated bumps on their wooden bottoms but have smooth leather or suede on top. Traditionally the wooden bottoms were designed as work shoes for farmers working on steep slopes as far back as the 1600s. The Half Shoes are meant to be comfortable, fashionable, and above all durable. While you shouldn’t wear basketball or tennis shoes with your Oktoberfest outfit, many companies have started making brown leather tracht sneakers which are a great alternative.
If you are on a budget or just don’t want to pack an extra pair of shoes for Oktoberfest, then consider wearing a just-above-the-ankle pair of leather hiking/work boots. Popular brands for this option include Red Wing or Timberland, but try to find something that isn’t too much of either a dress shoe or a full work boot. Hiking shoes can be okay too, especially if you wear slouchy socks, however, basketball sneakers will make you look like a tourist.
Whatever you do, do not wear sandals and not only will you look silly, but open-toed shoes are also a safety risk with debris and the occasional broken glass in the Oktoberfest tents.
7. Bavarian Socks:
Socks for Oktoberfest can be wool, but are normally cotton with stripes or checkered patterns on them. While plain slouchy socks are common, the coolest combo is a low cut cotton bootie sock with a matching mid-shin wool leg warmer (Loferl -or- Wadlstrumpf ) worn on your calves. If you go with the calf warmer style, note that in Bavaria the double stripes go on top and are folded either a piece of elastic or string used to keep them up.
8. Jackets & Vests:
Most of the established Bavarian men have either a sturdy vest or wool collar-less jacket (janker) to accent their outfit for Oktoberfest. A traditional vest is called a Prien and it is often worn along with a leather belt instead of using suspenders with your lederhosen. While some of the vests for Oktoberfest are flat material, many are quilted and often have decorative metal or bone buttons as embellishments. The vests can be accompanied by a tracht tie (not a business suit tie) while is usually are worn plain or with fancy metal tie rings.
We are also huge fans for the tradition collar-less Bavarian jackets, although they can be very expensive. You will notice that most well-to-do fathers who are with their families have these sleek looking coats. Alternatively, you can get a button up wool cardigan sweater for about half the price of the jackets ($60 versus $150+).
9. Men’s Accessories:
For a guy dressing for Oktoberfest in Munich, there aren’t as many accessory options as the women get, but there are still a few good ones. Similar to adding pins or feathers to decorate your Alpine hat, you can create some flair on your lederhosen by wearing a Charivari chain.
A decorative Charivari chain are often filled with hanging pewter coins and sometimes pieces of stag antler or other hunting elements. Traditionally these chains are family heirlooms of sorts that are acquired at your 21st birthday, from your wife, or inherited from your father when he dies. You can attach the Charivari either to the lap of your lederhosen, to the chest straps, or to the outside of your vest if you wear one. If the chain is connected to a pocket watch (Taschenuhren) it is actually called a Mieder instead of a Charivari which can make shopping for them online confusing.
Other male accessories you can wear include an inscribed Wiesn Klammer clothespin (described in detail above in women’s section), a stately belt buckle, short scarf, or a handkerchief tie (Nickituch). These handkerchief ties are really simple as they is basically just a bandana tied loosely in a double knot with the knot side facing forward. Long handkerchiefs were once more common around the neck if a man chewed tobacco or took snuff, but today you are more likely to see a small handkerchief as a pocket square on an Oktoberfest vest.
Although bracelets and wristwatches aren’t traditional Bavarian wardrobe items and can look awkward with lederhosen, they are totally fine to wear.
From eBay and Amazon to Old Town Munich and the cheap stands at the train station, there are tons of great places to buy Oktoberfest outfits. Below are some of the places we have had the best luck shopping at both in person and online.
Best Places In Munich To Shop In Person:
Buying your outfit in person is a great way to get exactly what you want and most importantly to make sure it fits. If you are shopping during Oktoberfest, except that the retails stores will be quite packed. You may be able to find some older styles on sale in person, but the selection will be limited. It is also important to note that all of the shops in central Munich are closed on Sundays.
1. Steindl Wiesn Tracht und Mehr (Tal 19): The Steindl store in the heart of Munich is open all year (excluding Sundays) and have excellent staff to help you get properly fitted and get the most out of your budget. They have cheaper options, but the best deal is their set of socks, shoes, shirt, scarf, and high quality lederhosen for rought 190€. The girls’ clothing here has a lot more options than the walkup stands around town. You can find a wide range of tradiational drindls to sexy (but tasteful) options at Steindl. Hours: Monday-Saturday from 10am-10pm. Website: (HERE).
2. Resales Second Hand & More (Sonnenstrasse 2): Is a great consignment location for 2nd hand outfits. This store has the most stuff and best prices out of the 2nd hand places. They have 5 locations in Munich including one between the train station and Old Town in Karlsplatz, one right in Old Town, and another on just South of Oktoberfest. The general hours are open Monday-Saturday from 10am-8pm. Website: (HERE).
3. Train Station Stands: Outside of the Munich train station are a number of temporary stands selling complete outfits. The quality isn’t great but they have a wide enough selection and are helpful in a pinch. You can get a shirt and lederhosen together for 60-120€, and with shoes for 150-180€. Dirndls with a blouse at the stands will range from 40-120€. The stuff here isn’t super high quality, but it looks decent and should be good enough to get you through a few days of partying. That being said, we have also have souvenier stand lederhosen that have lasted less than two hours of Oktoberfest before they ripped while sitting so you get what you pay for.
4. Akmenrausch (Tal 21 & 1): Is open from Monday-Saturday 10am-10pm. The flagship store is at Tal 21. They are a little more expensive, but because they have the best stuff they are always packed. Their online shop is a great way to browse the inventory. Website: (HERE).
5. Angermaier (Rosental 10): Is another expensive designer place, and they have a special tourist package during Oktoberfest for 129 euro for the girls set and 200 for the guys’ outfit. They’re open Monday-Friday 10am-7pm, and Saturday 10am-4pm. Website: (HERE).
6. C & A (Kaufingerstrasse 13 & Bayerstrasse 21): C & A is a newcomer to our list and we couldn’t get over how may high-quality items they had at affordable rates. The website is pretty good but if you get to their stores in Munich they have over 10,000 items and even second-hand stuff. They’re open Monday-Saturday 9am-8pm. Website: (HERE).
Best Places to Shop Online:
While there is an argument to be made for trying things on beforehand, we prefer shopping for our outfits online so we have them before arriving in Munich or at Oktoberfest. Buying online ahead of time will help save you time going from store to store that you can be spending enjoying your vacation. You can get the costume style outfits online really cheap, but we recommend spending the extra couple bucks and getting a truly authentic Oktoberfest outfit.
About Sotckerpoint: To get the perfect Trachten outfit before you get to Munich or Oktoberfest make sure to shop at Stockerpoint. They have the best mixture of modern and traditional outfits highlighted by very detailed Dirndls with bright colors and contemporary patterns. The cool people in Germany buy from Stockerpoint because you can get something unique that you know will last a long time. In addition to high-end outfits, they also have affordable options ranging from 99-199 Euros with shipping to the US around 40 Euros. Website: (HERE).
2. Alpen Wahnsinn:
About Alpen Wahnsinn: Great modern selection of Women’s outfits and they are always having sales. A lot of what they sell are directly from Stockerpoint which is listed above. Shop Stockerpoint directly first but make sure to also check Alpen Wahnsinn’s sales as they sometimes have some very high-end Dirndls for only 99 Euros. Website: (HERE).
3. Kruger Tracht:
About Kruger Tracht: The Kruger brand is one of the most popular in Bavaria for men’s and women’s Oktoberfest and we especially see a lot of it when we are traveling in Austria. Their dresses are very high quality and they have some of the most unique styles for the money we have found. The coolest collect there Kruger carries are the Men’s Regional Outfits which has custom lederhosen for different cities and countries. Women’s Dirndl Dresses: (HERE). Men’s Lederhosen: (HERE). 3rd Party Seller: (HERE).
4. Marjo Dirndls:
About MarJo Dirndl: Like Kruger, Marjo is very in touch with the modern retail side of Oktoberfest fashion. This dirndl of Marjo’s is one of our favorite ones we have ever seen and really helps get you to think outside the box for your unique outfit for Wiesn. Because MarJo is only sold through 3rd party outlets it can be difficult to find them but well worth it. MarJo’s Ggwandlalm collection is made in limited qualities and really cool. Women’s Dirndl Dresses: (HERE). 3rd Party Seller: (HERE). Another 3rd Party Seller: (HERE). 3rd Party Seller For Kids: (HERE).
5. Alpen Classics:
About Alpen Classics: If you really aren’t sure where to start, but want a lot of great options for the whole family, then you may want to browse the website for Alpen Classics. What we really love about them is they they carry tons of different high-quality brands of dirndl dresses and lederhosen for both adults and children at really good prices. Women’s Dirndl Dresses: (HERE). Men’s Lederhosen: (HERE). Outfits For Children: (HERE).
6. Angermaier Trachten:
About Angermaier Trachten: Open since 1948, Angermaier Trachten is one of Bavaria’s most established, and one of the most trendy Oktoberfest clothing stores. While all of the items they carry are very fashion forward, the diverse styles are still more affordable than you’d imagine. Especially with the women’s dirndl dresses for Oktoberfest, we love the wide range of neck styles Angermaier Trachten has and how easy it is to search their website. Angermaier Trachten also specializes in helping couples and families coordinate their color schemes. Maybe the best thing about this company is that they also have two walk-in stores in Munich and one in Nuremberg. Women’s Dirndl Dresses: (HERE). Men’s Lederhosen: (HERE). Outfits For Children: (HERE).
7. Angermaier Trachten:
About Wirkes Tracht: This is another excellent store with options for the whole family. We especially love their women’s dirndl dresses for Oktoberfest which have a wide range of neck styles that are easy to search on their website. Wirkes Tracht also carries some of the best dirndl dresses for children. Women’s Dirndl Dresses: (HERE). Men’s Lederhosen: (HERE). Outfits For Children: (HERE).
8. High End Fashion Dirndls:
About High End Options: While Stockerpoint, Alpen Wahnsinn, and Angermaier are our go-to places for buying outfits for Oktoberfest in Munich, there are also a few high-end fashion boutiques you may want to consider if you have a higher budget. One of the most well-known designer options in Munich is Edelweiss-Muenchen who is well known for dressing celebrities in fancy, fashion-forward dirndl dresses. Their dirndl dresses can be up to 10x more expensive than other options but the quality and uniqueness of the craftsmanship is unmatched. Edelweiss-Muenchen’s specialty is in fairytale style dirndls which look straight out of a fashion magazine.
Edelweiss-Muenchen Website: (HERE).
9. Stores On Ebay & Amazon:
About Buying From Ebay & Amazon: There are obviously a lot of flyby night places trying to make a quick dollar selling Oktoberfest clother online, but both EBay and Amazaon can be good fall back outlets. It is wonderful that if you already know your sizing your can order directly from Amazon with quick shipping and extra protections for returns if you have Prime.
A great place on Ebay to buy a complete guy’s outfit from head to toe is Trendswear 4U’s page. Their garments are made in the Middle East which allows you to get a pair of shoes, socks, shirt and leather lederhosen with suspenders for only $125 total. They have a very strong Ebay rating and ship from the United States which takes some stress out of buying, especially with shipping. The outfits bought here for $99 can be over $250 anywhere else. While have had lederhosen from Ebay last over 5 years, the quality isn’t meant to be a long term of lifelong answer for your outfit but can definitely get you through 1-2 year of the Wiesn with no issues. Ebay Store: (HERE).
How Much Should I Pay For My Outfit:
Full authentic outfits typically range from 100-200 Euros, but they can be in the 1000s of Euros depending on the detail and accessories you go with. If you are really on a budget the cheap costume style outfits can be as cheap as 49€, but you get what you pay for. If you get lucky at the train station stands sometime they are on a steep discount.