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Oktoberfest 2013: 12 German Phrases Every Traveller Should Learn

young people in traditional costumes drinking beer on the Octoberfest
young people in traditional costumes drinking beer on the Octoberfest

Oktoberfest 2013 is just around the corner and for every well-seasoned, beer-sipping, bratwurst-munching festival veteran, there's bound to be a few newcomers to one of Germany's largest fall festivals.

For the uninitiated, this year's Oktoberfest runs from Sept. 21 to Oct. 6 and continues what started as a horse race to celebrate the royal marriage of Prince Ludwig I and Princess Therese of Saxe-Hildburghausen back in 1810. Now, there's always a few places around the world to celebrate, but if you're looking for the heart of it all, head to Munich, Germany.

If you're in Munich, you won't be able to miss it thanks to the dozen or so beer tents set up in the Theresienwiese, a meadow near the centre of the city. But come expecting plenty of company.

The celebration is regarded as one of the largest food festivals and for good reason — the Winzerer Fähndl alone, the largest tent, can accommodate nearly 11,000 visitors. Factor in the other 30 or so tents and you've got yourself plenty of opportunities to make some pen pals. While it's not necessary to be fluent in German to attend the festival, a little effort goes a long way whenever you're in a foreign country.

Now, German isn't the easiest language to pick up, but some key terms the Daily Telegraph suggests to watch out for are "aufmandeln" which means to get angry, usually over the fact that it's tough to find a seat; "Aufstöin" which translates to donating a beer and "prost!" which travellers can expect to hear a lot because it means "cheers!"

While that's just scratching the surface, Huffington Post Canada Travel did some digging and with the help of, a language learning system, compiled a list of German phrases that travellers might want to put in their back pocket for the next 16 days.

So, brush up on your German and "prost" to another Oktoberfest!

12 Oktoberfest Phrases You'll Want To Know

Wo sind die Bierzelte?
Translation: Where are the beer tents?
Ist dieser Tisch frei?
Translation: Is this seat taken?
Wissen Sie, wo ich noch einen freien Platz finde?
Translation: Do you know where I can find any free seats?
Das Essen schmeckt sehr gut. Was genau esse ich hier noch mal?
The Associated Press
Translations: The food here is delicious. What am I eating again?
Mehr Bier, Bitte!
Translation: More beer, please!
Ist das ein Liter?
Translation: Is that a litre?
Wo finde ich die Toiletten?
Translation: Where can I find the toilet?
Pass auf, dass uns niemand den Tisch weg nimmt
The Associated Press
Translation: Make sure no one steals this table. Not urgent enough? Try: "Verteidige diesen Tisch mit deinem Leben" for "Guard this table with your life!"
Reichst du mir bitte die Brezeln?
Translation: Can you pass the preztles?
Ohje. Bitte keinen Alkohol mehr.
Translation: Oh God. Please, mo more alcohol.
Wo kann ich mich übergeben?
Translation: Where can I puke?
Lass uns das nächstes Jahr wiederholen.
The Associated Press
Translation: Let's do this again next year.

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