Everything You Need To Know About Oktoberfest

You already know the Oktoberfest basics – big beers at the world’s biggest beer festival; German culture, or better still Bavarian culture, on display; more than seven million people in attendance over the course of the 15 day festival. You also know that Stoke Travel is the biggest tour operator to Munich, that we have the craziest, most fun pre and post beer hall parties, and that for only €60 per day we have your accommodation, cooked breakfast and dinner, and festival within a festival atmosphere covered.

But here are some other things about Oktoberfest that you might not already know, and that we think you really should know.

The beer tents are temporary

They’re huge, solid, seat up to 10,000 people, with elaborate woodwork, balconies, gazebos for the bands, paintings, kitchens, huge bathrooms… and they’re totally temporary. Construction, and deconstruction, of the beer tents takes around a month, and they’re fitted with plumbing, electricity, heating and AC, as well as animatronic lions (Lowebraü), or giant beer mugs, or a rotating roast ox.


It’s almost as much about the food as it is about the beer

The food is perfectly salty, fatty, hearty beer drinking food. Big hunks of meat, be it pork, or beef, or chicken, fish, schnitzels, the wurst sausages, dumplings, sauerkraut, fries, pretzels, radishes (!). Stoke Travel includes a hot, filling breakfast and dinner, but for lunch you should dabble in the beer hall fare at least once.


There is an insane carnival seemingly devoted to encouraging you to vomit

Like the beer tents, the carnival is temporary, but that doesn’t mean it’s in any way, shape or form like the temporary carnivals you know. The rides are huge, hectic, and will definitely challenge your ability to hold your beer and beer drinking lunch down. Once you’ve had your fill of delicious Bavarian beer, make the stumble to the fairgrounds.


The beer servers work Oktoberfest and then have the rest of the year off

It’s a rumour that we’ve consistently heard for the past 10 years or so that we’ve been attending this festival, that the beer servers will work the 15 days of Oktoberfest straight, and then retreat to their home villages and live off the profits for the rest of the year. They work off tips, and the average should be around €2 per beer. When you consider that seven million beers are consumed over the course of the festival and there are around 1000 beer servers, that means that on average servers are taking home €14,000 from their 15 days of work in tips alone, not including food, wine or soft drinks. But don’t worry, they earn it working 16 hour days, dealing with the drunkest people on earth, and carrying up to 14 litres of beer at a time.


You can choose Oktoberfest by day, or by night, but only a fool would try and do both

Apart from the first day, when the first keg is tapped at midday, the beer halls open at 10am on weekdays and 9am on weekends. They then serve beer non-stop until 10:30pm every day. Now, the beers are very tasty, but also rather strong, with about 6% alcohol content, and are obviously served by the litre. What we’re saying is, you will get rather drunk if you stay in the beer halls for too long, and while many a partier has tried to follow the day session with a nighttime party, most fail miserably.


Wearing the traditional clothing isn’t mandatory, but you have to do it

The locals wouldn’t be caught dead at the Theresienwiese (Oktoberfest fairground) without their dirndl (women) or lederhosen (men, sometimes women). Sure, you can enter if you don’t wear the traditional Bavarian beer drinking costume, but you really won’t feel like you’re taking part in the ‘Fest. You can buy crappy, fancy-dress style outfits for €10-20, or you can buy crazy tailored made ones for 100s, if not 1000s. We sell high quality, leather lederhosen and the cutest dirndls at our campsite at amazing prices, so probably just hook yourself up there.

You will get a hangover from the pure beer, maybe just a little less of one

Don’t listen to what anybody says, because while Oktoberfest beer does strictly adhere to German purity laws – only water, malt, barley and hops legally allowed in the beer – you’ll be drinking enough of it to get properly drunk, and the next day you will have a hangover (you’ll probably think it’s a good idea to do Jager shots, etc, so that will contribute too). No next-day pain, no night-before gain.

Seven million beer drinkers will make their way to Munich for the world’s biggest, and original, beer festival – with more than seven thousand of them staying with Stoke Travel. We have the biggest, best and wildest pre and post parties, and give you wayyyy more bang for your buck, when you pay €60 per day all inclusive. This event will sell out, so book sooner rather than later.


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Stoke Travel’s Guide To Getting Kicked Out Of Establishments

Like death and taxes, getting kicked out of bars, restaurants, pubs and clubs can be totally avoided. In Europe, where Stoke Travel lives and dances, getting asked to leave, or forcefully ejected from, establishments is a rarity, a situation reserved for only the most monstrous of partiers. This is in contradiction to Australia, and the USA, where overzealous security personnel will eject a reveller for having too much fun, as if that wasn’t the only wholesome reason for entering any place that serves alcohol.

Sometimes, however, no matter where we are we’re going to be watched by security, cut off from the bar, made to drink water, told to take it easy, asked to leave, or even forcefully removed from the place you want to be in, the place where all your friends are, the place you’re invested in having a good time in! And when those times come, we want you to be prepared for them.

Phase One: Avoid Attention

If they can’t see you, they can’t hassle you. It’s as simple as that. The problem is, security are actively looking for you. It’s not only their job, it’s their passion to exert some control over you, compensating for all the school years when people like you had more fun than them. They’ve got chips on their shoulders and a plastic badge and can of pepper spray to back it up.

So you’ve got to outsmart them, which isn’t hard because as a very general rule, security guards aren’t so smart. You have to be a master of barroom camouflage, blending into your environment so that you might safely slam vodka sodas without the fun police’s night-ruining stare stuffing up your chances of getting nicely festive. Here’s how:

  • Wear inconspicuous clothes – tracksuit pants, grey sweater. Show very little of your body, nothing attractive, nothing noticeable. Wear a potato sack, actually. You want to be as straight up and down and beige as possible.
  • Choose drinks that don’t draw attention. Forget the fancy cocktails and brown mixed drinks – they scream “i’m getting sloppy/emotional/both”. Go for something discrete, like vodka. Straight. In fact, why not enter the venue with a water bottle filled with straight vodka down your pants? Then sip it all night like the hydrating athlete you want them to think you are.
  • Hang out with people who are wilder than you are. Find a group of the biggest, drunkest, loudest idiots and just sort of slot into the crowd, hide amongst the exuberance, and by being a part of such a maelstrom become invisible.

WILDCARD: during this phase you can try and curry favour with the security forces. This can be a wise tactic, as they may look at you compassionately because you asked them how they’re going, and whether they’ve had a busy night, with much trouble. But it’s dangerous, because now they know who you are, and  if the security can’t find anybody else to flex their muscle on, your now familiar face might be enough to see you evicted.

Phase Two: Dealing With Your Eviction Notice

Ok, so it’s unlikely you were able to avoid security all night, so at some point they’re going to approach you and try and stop you from having fun. How you behave at this stage is going to determine whether you spend the rest of the night dancing like a legend and making out with babes, or sitting alone outside the fun zone, considering getting a falafel wrap.

When the security guards approach you, they’re going to accuse you of being too intoxicated. Here are some of the questions or accusations they might throw at you, and some responses you should conisder.

  • “How much have you had to drink?”
    There is no correct answer to this. Too few and you’re a filthy liar, but too many and you’re a confessed drunken maniac. We would suggest saying something cheeky like, Why, did you want to buy me one? It won’t work, but nothing would have.
  • “Your eyes are pretty red. You must be smashed.”
    If you’ve spent too much time surfing, your eyes will be red, and apparently that’s ground to be evicted due to intoxication. A potential response to this is, I’ve barely had anything to drink, sir, it’s just that my roommate farts on my pillow every night. Be careful, I think pinkeye is contagious.
  • “How about you take a break from the drinks for a while? Maybe have a water.”
    When a security guard mentions this they’re compromising their boss’s entire business model, which is for people to buy alcoholic drinks. You should suggest this, ask to see a manager, demand to see the big boss, and when they agree that you should drink water, refuse on the grounds that That’s where fish have sex.
  • “It’s time for you to go.”
    There’s nothing you can do now. Say, Sure. I understand your position, and you can’t possibly have intoxicated people in your venue. But if I may say one thing before I leave, it’s that out of everybody here I’d have to be the most… at which point you leg it for the crowd, frantically rip your shirt off, start making out with somebody in a corner, generally hide.

Final Phase: Getting Evicted

This is where you have the chance to retain a final shred of your dignity. Once you have no other option to remain inside the venue having fun, you should take the high road, and when it comes time to be escorted out of the pub/club/bar you should thank your captors for their professionalism, say goodbye to your friends, and then promptly flop on the floor and play dead. There is nothing quite as difficult to carry as a completely lifeless body, so if they want you out of there, they’re going to have to work for it. Fuck ‘em! It’s their loss to not have you in there, you were about to bring up the value of the place with your fire dance moves.

The hardest place in the world to get kicked out of has to be a Stoke Travel camp. Our open bar is legendary, and if you’re not annoying anybody else – or being a danger to yourself – you’re free to continue having a good time. Why don’t you check us out in Valencia, for La Tomatina, or in Munich for Oktoberfest, where we’ll be partying with more than 7000 new best friends!

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Tried And Tested Ways To Officially Cock-block Yourself While Travelling

Have you ever been in that super awkward situation where you’ve met a guy in your hostel, he asks you to go for a drink somewhere and you oblige despite knowing exactly how he wants it to end? You go for the drink, but you’re really not feeling it. Obviously, as any well educated and intelligent person knows, all you have to do is simply cock-block yourself. Soon after, he’s the one left feeling incredibly dumb and wondering what on earth was going through his mind when he thought he wanted to have sex with you.

If you’re wondering how this can be done, it’s really quite simple. There are many ways you can successfully cock-block yourself. Hell, you can even get a lil’ creative if you want. We’ve tried and tested many methods in this fine art, and although we wouldn’t consider ourselves to be experts just yet, we reckon we’re pretty bloody good. Here’s a list of our top five ways to successfully cock-block yourself:

  1. Yawn heaps

This simple yet effective move shows that you are absolutely, completely 100% disinterested in what he has to say and in turn, his company. This is going to put him off because he will naturally assume that everything he is saying is useless and uninteresting, and he’s probably right. If you really want to amp it up, in conjunction with your excessive yawning, verbally express how exhausted you are and he will correctly assume you’re way too tired to participate in any kind of physical activity.

  1. Talk about your ex a lot

This move not only scares him off but it also makes him fully aware that you’ve got emotional baggage, which is less than ideal. It works better if you talk about the happy times you shared rather than the sad. Doing this might lead him to assume there’s a chance you two might rekindle things in the near future, the ultimate cock-block. Another important thing to note when talking about your ex is that this poor guy is now almost definitely imagining the two of you getting freaky. This has the potential to totally turn him off, or it could backfire and make him want you even more. Usually it turns him off but it’s always good to be prepared for either outcome.

  1. Call him ‘mate’ a lot

By calling him mate frequently during conversation, you’re really getting the point across that he’s exactly that, a mate. It’s highly likely that his ego will be quite bruised and he will probably never try to make a move on you ever again. Men don’t often like to be called mate by women they are trying to make out with, especially not multiple times in one sitting. There is something about a woman calling him mate that instantly makes a man’s penis dramatically decrease in size, and despite many tests being run on why this happens, there is no scientific evidence to explain it. Whatever the reason is, it’s a good, simple way to cock-block yourself while getting some sick enjoyment out of watching him squirm with every ‘mate’ you drop.

  1. Spend the whole time on your phone

In this day and age, we’re always on our phones. The rectangular bastards rule the roost and it seems to have become the norm to always have them present, replying to every little buzz and beep the demanding little thing makes. Take this to the next level by aimlessly scrolling through instagram, barely replying to anything he says with the exception of the occasional and obviously uninterested Ohhh yeahhh and to really amp it up, watch facebook videos out loud. This will not only make you look like you’re super popular and untouchable but he will probably get pretty sick of the one-sided conversation and wrap things up early.

  1. Turn up covered in tomatoes

You’ve just returned from a trip with party masters Stoke Travel, to the world’s biggest tomato fight, La Tomatina. You’ve had the time of your life smashing thousands of strangers in the face with acidic red fruit, and getting smashed in return. There is not one part of your body that has escaped the messy wrath of the tomato fight and you’re starting to wonder if you might ever be clean again. The key here is to embrace it! Go on the date in all your tomato glory, don’t wash your hair, relish (haha, get it, relish) in the aftermath of having gone swimming in the worlds biggest bolognese. When you arrive, he will look at you funny and you’ll play it cool, leaving him confused and probably disgusted (in himself for not coming) and the date will be inevitably cut short so that you can go home and shower.

The age old art of cock-blocking has been practiced for female enjoyment for a number of years now and there are many, many ways it can be done. Although we have only touched on a mere five, (the fifth is the best and most effective by far) you can always get creative with your methods. Get yourself along to La Tomatina for the world’s biggest food fight, get saucy, get drunk and work on your cock-blocking skills in the biggest, most fun, all inclusive campsite in Valencia. See ya there!

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Australia v Austria: Watch the 2018 Davis Cup with Stoke Travel

So you’re just a wayward sportsfan kicking around Europe for the summer. You’ve already got plenty of plans that involve various types of booze and occasions in which to consume it, including Stoke’s Oktoberfest, the crown jewel of boozy events. The problem is twofold: you have some spare time before the Bavarian behemoth of beer festivals, and by then your body will be screaming out for respite from the good times. Cue the Davis Cup group playoffs in Austria— a way to solve both dilemmas in one swift forehand strike.

Some quick facts before we get into our breakdown comparison of the teams at hand: the Davis Cup is kind of like the World Cup of men’s tennis, only with considerably fewer bribes and considerably more grunting. Teams compete individually and in doubles to win the cup for their home country. The U.S. has the most overall victories, surprising nobody, but are followed closely for most overall wins by Australia, who kind of wish the prestige was for a less nancy-sport. And finally the funnest fact of them all: for the first time, Stoke Travel is joining We The People at the 2108 Davis Cup. That’s right, you’ve finally found a rowdy enough crowd to make spectator tennis fun!

So, to the match-up at hand.  Don’t worry that you didn’t realize Austria and Australia were bitter rivals (ever since the first instances of abbreviating country names on scoreboards) because here’s Stoke Travel’s comparison of the two competitors in several categories with varying levels of relevance to tennis.

1. Tennis prowess: Australia
Australia and Austria have very different histories with tennis. Australia holds the second-most Davis Cup wins in history, including a streak of 15 wins in 18 years between 1950-1967. Austria, on the other had, has zero wins in the history of the Davis Cup. To those less savvy on sports talk, this translates to a pretty piss poor performance by the Austrians, who’ve had 81 chances so far and have failed to ever do better than that one time in 1990 when they made the semifinals.

2. Home court advantage: Austria
You’ll be watching the “rubbers” (incredibly silly way to say matches) in Austria, which is historically the home of Austrians and the Austrian tennis team. Austria therefore gets the point for this category because the Australians might get a bit frazzled after being confronted with so many people speaking German. Maybe they didn’t get what they wanted to order for lunch, maybe it’s just an air of tension created by the aggressive sounding language, but either way you can bet that the Aussies won’t have thought to add German language to their training regimen. The advantage is minimized, however, because the matches will be played on a clay court rather than grass, and the Australians are well used to dirt and clay while having likely never encountered grass before.

3. Fans: Austria
Austria has never won or even made it to the finals of the Davis Cup, but the Austrian team will likely have more fans in attendance than Australia because of basic geography. Also, Australians are likely focused on more niche sports like Australian Football and Not Being Killed by Poisonous Animals. Australia does have a large contingent of travelers and expats, however, which could even the odds in this category if mobilized in support of their racquet-wielding countrymen.

4. Number of letters in name: Australia
Perhaps the closest match-up of this contest, but Australia has the advantage here, with two letters more in the overall category and one unique letter more.

5. Number of famous people: Austria
In the category of famous legacies, Austria and Australia are relatively evenly matched, the former with just a few, and the latter claiming not very many. Off the top of our heads, we’ve got Arnold Schwarzenegger and Steve Irwin. Maybe Mozart, he was Austrian, right? Sigmund Freud was also Austrian. Okay this one goes to Austria, unless you count Adolph whatshisname, in which case you’d default the victory Down Under.

Overall Pick: Australia
While Austria does have some things going for it, those things are generally unrelated to tennis. We like Australia to win, but you’re welcome to root for Austria if you like the inclusivity of cheering on the home team.

Add the Davis Cup onto your Oktoberfest package so no matter who wins, you can celebrate/commiserate with us at the world’s largest beer festival!

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Stoke Travel Officially The Biggest And Best At Oktoberfest

Here’s why

According to TourRadar, Stoke Travel is officially the best tour operator in Munich for Oktoberfest. We’d always known that, but it was nice to have it confirmed officially. They made their choice based on guests’ reviews, of which we either get exceptional ones, or terrible ones. For Oktoberfest the exceptional far outweighed the terrible.

This is partly because of our all-inclusive, no hidden cost nightly price of €60 per day, €70 if you want a wristband for the open and unlimited beer and sangria bar that we have on site (you do). For your €60 you get twin share camping accommodation, with sleeping mat and bag, a hot breakfast and dinner, and a beer when you arrive. This is already an exceptionally good deal.

We don’t stop at that, however. Stoke Travel goes to great lengths to ensure that where you camp is also the best party you’ll ever see. We have pulled together a giant area for drinking, socialising, and chatting each other up. Every night we have bands, or DJs, or live burlesque performances, or magicians, or carnival sideshows, or all of it together. We have drinking game stations set up, and our infamous Wheel of Misfortune means that there’s usually somebody running around naked or drinking from their shoe.

That’s what we do from our side, in order to attract the best group of travellers we can. And they come, you come, in droves. We are by far the biggest tour group in Munich, with 7000 people joining us over the three weekends of Oktoberfest and all the days in between, topping out at over 2000 on any one night when we’re at our busiest.

We have travellers partying with us from all over the world, from more than 80 different nations, meaning that when you stay with us you won’t be surrounded only by people from your country (although there will be plenty of them if you want to a taste of home). This is a truly international experience, where you can meet new people from all over the globe and party with them, fuelled by unlimited beer and sangria from the aforementioned open bar.

Stoke will have 300 or so wild, weird and wonderful staff on hand to take care of you – mostly volunteers who will be on hand to offer you a beer on your arrival, check you in, show you to your tent and make sure everything there is in order, serve you beer or sangria from the open bar, produce our radio show that plays over the camp when there are no DJs or bands, man the travel desk that will help you get to your next destination, make sure you find the right dirndl or lederhosen for you, and cook your food for you.

Cook your food for you. This one’s important. We have a team of chefs and cooks who spend 18 hours a day preparing your breakfast and dinner (it takes that long to prep for serving so many people). At dinner time they will be serving up German specialties, like bratwurst and sauerkraut, and traveller’s staples like nachos and chicken schnitzel burgers, and even paellas because Stoke’s roots are in Spain. For breakfast we’re talking bacon and eggs, french toast, and so on. Something hardy and cooked to line your stomach before a huge day of beery boozing. For some travellers, a stay with Stoke represents the best meal they’ve had in a good while.

We also have coffee roasters onsite, serving up real coffee for a small fee (there’s free instant with breakfast). They have sourced the beans and are skilled in the art of preparation, including putting generous nips of various spirits in your coffee if you so wish. We also have Kontuz Manos serving up homemade, steaming hot, Australian-style meat pies. They’ll also cost you a few euros, but go down so well with beer, while you’re waiting for dinner to arrive.

Our aim is to create and environment for you to be whomever you want to be, to party however you want to party, to provide somewhere for you to warm up for the beer halls, or to keep the party going when you return. We know that you travel to festivals to make the most of them, and so we provide space and installations and services for you to have the most wonderful Oktoberfest possible. Nobody else in Munich goes to these lengths, and that is why Stoke Travel is the biggest tour operator at Oktoberfest, and also the best.

Want to learn more about the festival itself? Click here for Oktoberfest information. Or if you’re already sold, just dive over there and book. Prost!


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NO SHIT: Traveller Doing Nice Things In Europe

It has been revealed by a series of social media posts that Natasha Beckinsale, 23, has been doing some pretty nice things while travelling in Europe.

The surprising news was first revealed when, in the airport waiting for her flight to the continent, she treated herself to an overpriced glass of white wine. Plenty more of this where I’m going, she quasi-cryptically quipped to her 460 followers, who were painfully aware of where she was going due to the last eight months essentially being a countdown to her three week Euro jaunt.

Since then Beckinsale’s followers have been treated to a steady deluge of nice things, with casual observers noting that she is spending most her time away either near crystal clear azure waters, leaning on whitewashed walls, or standing awkwardly in pot plant laden laneways. She also seems to spend most of her city time walking past cute street art, or drinking coffee out of tiny mugs.

According to her self-curated feed, the young traveller is sustaining herself almost exclusively with gourmet snack food – thinly sliced ham, olives and cheese mostly – or acai bowls. She also seems to be consuming a worrying amount of wine, going well over the one glass a day that is recommended by almost every health organisation in the world. Nevertheless, despite giving the impression that she is a problem drinker, Beckinsale does seem to be having a nice time while doing it.

Much of the time Beckinsale’s indulgence in nicety runs contrary to the situation of the country she finds herself in. While Greece was mourning up to 80 dead in forest fires, Beckinsale was declaring that Santorini has stolen [her] heart, and a post next to the Eiffel Tour that identified her Gypsy soul, failed to mention the 76 Roma beggars she’d ignored that morning who suffer the term “gypsy” as a racial slur.

She’s also managed to do nice things in a diverse array of locations and with various experiences. In the space of a week the pescetarian had run with bulls, or at the very least posed in the clothes the bull runners wear, and floated on a big, pink, inflatable flamingo in the Mediterranean, mountain the plastic pool toy while vocally supporting a supermarket chain’s decision to phase plastic bags out of their stores.

The posting schedule seems to be having the desired effect, with Beckinsale’s friends and family back home in Australia acutely aware of the nice time their intrepid peer is having. “Yeah we get it, it’s fucken nice over there,” said Beckinsale’s it’s complicated partner, Jeremy Sims, 28. “I dunno, I’m stuck here up to my elbows in human waste, feeding her bank account when the fortnightly fund requests come in from her, and I’m forced to sit through a non-stop stream of her drinking beachside cocktails with slimy European blokes in speedos. It’s fucked.”

At the time of publication Beckinsale was leading somebody by the hand to yet another European port, where her Instagram story would confirm she’s eating sardines and drinking white wine. Sims was not as concerned for her cholesterol levels following her overindulgence in the oil and fat heavy Mediterranean diet, as he was about “That fella taking photos of her. Who the fuck is he?”

Do you like doing nice things? How about La Tomatina, down on the Mediterranean by Valencia, or Munich’s Oktoberfest? They’re nice, you should do them.

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Is Oktoberfest Worth It?

Is Oktoberfest worth it is a question that often pops up among young travellers. There’s no denying that the world’s biggest beer festival is most certainly attractive, but is it worth dropping your hard earned, even harder saved, pennies on?

Short answer, abso-fucking-lutely.

But if you’re still not convinced, let’s break it down for you.

Entry to the Oktoberfest: €0

This is by far the best value you’ll find on your travels. Entry to the Therenweisse, where Oktoberfest is held, is absolutely, completely free. From there you can walk the festival’s streets, eyeballing the proud horses that pull the kegs of beer around the grounds, visit the funfair which has rides that are almost Disneyland in quality, and of course enter all the beer halls you want to. The vibe is spectacular, the spectacle is stunning, the place is steeped in history and you can laugh at all the drunks.

Oktoberfest beer: let’s say €12 with a tip

So this is a little expensive. The beers themselves come in around €10, or a little over, but you really want to tip your server so they return to your table as often as you need them. The Oktoberfest is huge, with beer halls hosting around 10,000 people, so you’ve got to make sure that your Bavarian beer wench knows you, likes you, and wants to keep on serving you. For €12 what you get is a litre (33oz) of perhaps the most delicious beer you’ll ever taste, that is not only bullshit free (German purity law allows only water, barley, hops and malt to be added to beer), but damn strong too, coming in at 6% and up. One of these beers will have you nicely buzzed, two will see you dancing on tables, and anything after three, but before five, is where the magic happens – magic that you probably won’t remember.

Beer drinking food: pretzels €3, main €10-20

You won’t have to worry about breakfast or dinner, more about that later, but you will want to buy something delicious to soak up the beer, and just to bloody enjoy the experience. The pretzels are huge and salty, so you can share them between a few of you and scrape some of the salt off. For the mains, well you’ve never seen an array of food better suited to beer drinking. German sausages, sauerkraut, dumplings, roast chicken and the crowd pleasing pork knuckle. These meals are all huge, hearty, and something every visitor to Oktoberfest should consider trying at least once.

Your Oktoberfest stay: €60

This is almost as good a deal as the free entry to the festival. Your stay with Stoke Travel will set you back €60 a day, and will include twin share tent accommodation with mats and sleeping bags, cooked breakfasts and dinners, and Stoke Travel’s famous off-Oktoberfest parties with bands, DJs, games, shennanigans and our infamous €10 per-day all-you-can-drink beer and sangria bar. Staying with Stoke you’re guaranteed to be with a group of 100s, if not 1000s on the weekends, of like-minded travellers, all there to meet new people, have fun and, most of all, drink beer. Stoke create the perfect environment for you to start your day with something filling, hearty and warm, have some pre-beer hall beers, and find new crew to drink with by playing beer pong, spinning the Wheel of Misfortune, doing beer bongs, or simply sitting around in our shaded areas and chatting. Then when you return from the beer halls we’ll be serving you a chef-prepared dinner, have live bands, DJs and acts playing and you’ll find yourself in an environment where you can do absolutely whatever you want and be whomever you want to be. There’s no better way to finish up your day at Oktoberfest.

In total, you’re Oktoberfest stay will cost you around €100-120 per day, depending on how many beers you drink in the beer halls, and how much food you fall victim to. This is the biggest beer festival in the world, the biggest folk festival too, and the original Oktoberfest. It is steeped in tradition, has the most people by far, and the tastiest beers. It’s something that everybody has to do at least once in their lives; you can’t have more fun with a beer in your hand.

Also, when you consider that hostels in Munich during Oktoberfest go up to at least €50, plus breakfast, lunch, dinner and beers, you’ll realise that travelling with Stoke is the most cost effective way to travel. There’s so much included! And you’re guaranteed to meet new, cool, maybe cute, people. What kind of price can you put on that?? (We’ve worked it out and the price you can put on that is €60).

If you’re still not convinced then you need to sort out your priorities! The world’s biggest beer fest! It’s so, so worth it. Stoke Travel has plenty of space, but we do sell out on the weekends, so you’d better consider booking sooner rather than later.

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How To Make Sure Everyone In Your Dorm Hates You

Every 20-something traveller has stayed in a hostel at some point in their lives. If you’re busy running around Europe like the barefoot boho babe your instagram depicts you to be, there’s a high chance you’re probably spending a fair bit of time in hostels. It’s a common misconception that you immediately make friends with everyone in your hostel dorm because you’re all young, hip, cool travellers. Sometimes this is true, sure, and while we’ve heard some straight up heartwarming stories of love and lifelong friendships, this isn’t always the case.

Everyone has that one person in their dorm who is just really fucking annoying, and although you might think that’s just their personality, they have probably spent a long time practicing the art of being the shittest person in the dorm. If for some reason, you want to be that person, even if it’s just every once in a while, here are the top five tried and tested ways to make everyone in your dorm hate you.

  1. Come back late at night and turn the light on

This is a classic move. You’ve been out boozing with your mates (or hot foreign strangers) and decide it’s finally time to retreat back to the hostel and rest your weary head. It’s late at night and you know for a fact that everyone is going to be asleep in the dorm. This is where you get to practice being a real dick head! You barge into the room after fucking around with your key-card and once you’re finally in, you flick on the light. The room lights up in a very bright fluorescent manner and the sound of the irritated mumbles from your sleepy dorm-mates fill the room. Leave the light on for as long as you dare. Well done, you’re one step closer to being the most hated person in the room.  

  1. Skype your best friend in the room (extra points for doing it without headphones)

You’ve been away for a while now and your best friend is dying to tell you the latest mundane gossip about the same boring people back home, and of course, you’re dying to hear it. You climb into your bunk bed and begin the call that is going to go for an hour at least, and start your very intensive gossip session. People come and go, they put their headphones in, shoot you dirty looks and aggressively pull shut the curtains on their bed (if your hostel is fancy enough to have bed curtains), but you couldn’t give two shits. Continue on for as long as you can, talking at an above-average volume about how you always knew Stacy was a bitch and that you’re glad her and Brad have broken up. The longer (and louder) the conversation, the more hate points.

  1. Return to the dorm absolutely shit-faced and vomit on the floor

This is a big move and an even bigger commitment, because after you have done it, you’ll need to find a way of cleaning it up. You finally make it back to the dorm after a long night consisting of way too many tequila shots and the second you lay down you regret it all. Your mouth is watering and you waste too much time laying there trying to figure out if this is the real deal or a false alarm. It’s too late, before you have the chance to decide, your body decides for you. It’s the real deal. You try to make it out of the room but you don’t quite get there in time. Tequila vomit now covers the floor of your dorm room and it smells less than ideal. Someone MIGHT get up and offer to help you but it’s far more likely that they will just lay there, curse your name using some colourful words and shoot you some absolutely filthy looks the next morning.

  1. Bring that special someone you found in the club back to the dorm

After a successful night in the club you’ve found yourself a honey and you it’s time to get out of there and head to somewhere a little more quiet so you can get to know one another…Yeah right. What you really want is to bring said honey back to the dorm so you can get a lil freaky, and that’s exactly what you do. After jumping in a cab to speed the process up a bit, you barge into your dorm room, letting everyone know you’re about to get lucky and then it’s game on. Extra hate points if you’re on a top bunk.

  1. Brag about all the places you’ve ‘done’ and how cultured you are thanks to your 6 week Euro trip

This is a good way to spend a decent amount of time talking about yourself and pissing people off at the same time. Double whammy. Statistics also show that people who have travelled with Stoke are especially good at bragging about all the fun they’ve had on their travels, all the cool fiestas they’ve been too, all the super hot people they’ve met (and made out with) and all the free beer they’ve consumed. Asking them if they’re going to La Tomatina or Oktoberfest (proof that you’re cultured) is also a good way to rub salt deep into the wound, even more so if they say yes but they’re not going with Stoke. Losers. Make sure you tell them to have fun watching you have the time of your life while they sit miserably across the campsite with no hot food, no free beer or sangria, no live music and no hot babes. Cause that’s what will happen. Oh well, you warned them, they should’ve come with Stoke.

Come and hang out with us at La Tomatina or Oktoberfest for the opportunity to do all of these things, but without people hating you, because there’s a very high chance they are also doing all of the above. We all like to do all the dumb things together so that no one gets left behind! Book your trip with us now to ensure only the best of times and none of the worst.

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By far. And that’s precisely why you have to go NOW!

Life is full of parties! When you were born, it’s likely your dad went out and got drunk. Soon after your mum did too. You don’t remember your first birthday, but there was a party that went by unappreciated by you. Christmases were parties based on parents lying to you in order to keep your behaviour in check. School dances were parties where boys and girls stood on opposite sides of the hall and were reluctant to touch each other; older school dances became parties where boys and girls stood against the wall on the same side of the hall and enthusiastically touched each other.

Parties! And on some level almost all of them involved beer, either in the hands of your young parents, or in your trembling teenaged hands, or your teachers once the school disco was over and the frisky adolescent hormones had cleared the air.

We’re no mathemastaticians, but it seems like from day one the following equation could describe human existence:

Living = partying and partying = beer

Then we get old enough to openly and freely drink beer and party and while we sometimes shun the amber ale for stronger, or more situation specific substitutions, we always have a place in our life for drinking beer. Hot days. Pre drinking. In the shower. Once you’ve moved onto vino and jäger bombs and vodka and soda water with a dash of lime, beer will still be the go-to staple social lubricant/erection deterrent.

Given beer’s influence on our parties, and partying’s indelible connection to our lives, it makes crystal clear sense that we’d be interested in a party devoted exclusively to the imbibing of brewskis. We can skip the occasion, cease pretending to be interested in cousins’ confirmations, your grandma’s college graduation, the finalising of your parents’ divorce, and get straight and unadulteratedly into the tippling of loudmouth juice.  

Oktoberfest is now a global phenomenon. The world over, one can find gatherings of people worshipping German, or any, beer. Cities have Oktoberfests, villages do too. North America, South America. Asia. Africa. Australia. All over Europe. Sometimes there are Oktoberfests in October and sometimes they’re in other months entirely. It doesn’t matter, all that matters is that there is beer, and plenty of it, and it’s delicious.

But there is absolutely nothing like the orginal. The OG. The mack daddy of brew fests. Germany’s Oktoberfest, that started as a royal wedding celebration and turned into a global party phenomena. If life is partying and partying is done with beer, then heading to Munich’s hallowed beer halls is a pilgrimage we must all take at least once in our lives. It could be said that you haven’t really lived until you’ve stood on a table surrounded by thousands of Bavarians and globe travelling beer lovers and put away a litre of Germanic dancing juice.

It’s not just the Oktoberfest in Munich is the original Oktoberfest, it’s also the best! The best beers, brewed where you will be drinking it. The best ambience, with beer halls that house 10,000 people and more. The best beer drinking food, like giant pretzels and perfectly seasoned meats and vegetables and the greatest in German cuisine.

Then there is the tradition, the tradition that exists to make the drinking of the beer an even more pleasurable experience. There are the beer drinking costumes, the lederhosen and dirndls that exist only to get you in the mood for partying. There are the oompa bands in each and every beer hall who know the songs to play to get your already high spirits soaring.

But the thing that really separates Oktoberfest Munich from its global imitators is the sheer size. More than seven million people will attend Oktoberfest in 2018. Seven million! That’s about as many people that live in Bulgaria, and greater than the population of Fiji, Slovenia and Jamaica combined, all convening on Munich in order to drink beer.

Seven million people, every year. At Stoke Travel alone we have 2,000+ staying with us on the big nights. The sheer magnitude of Oktoberfest makes it a festival you just have to visit. The population of Hong Kong getting together to celebrate beer, which in its own way is a celebration of life itself. You’d be crazy not to join us this year, and we know that you’re not at all crazy. You’re beautiful, and we want to celebrate you.

Life = partying = beer and the world’s biggest beer party is probably the best way to live your life this September and October. Stoke Travel fills up for this festival, so you’d better be booking soon.


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Stages Of Getting Pissed At A Festival

Everyone knows the number one rule at a festival is to get as fucked up as humanly possible. This is all well and good, but we weren’t born yesterday and we know this doesn’t happen instantly. As with anything worth doing, it comes in stages – stages that have been perfectly mapped out so as to achieve the desired effect at exactly the right moment, resulting in everyone having the time of their lives! Pfft, yeah right.

If you’ve ever been to a festival with more than two people, you know things almost never work out that way. There is always at least one person who cooks their shit, someone is now their dedicated carer, someone else is flying so high they might never come down and someone else isn’t fucked up enough. After our recent trip to Bilbao’s very own BBK Live Festival and in preparation for the seven-day Hungarian bender that is Sziget, we’ve taken the guessing work out of getting pissed at a festival. What are the stages of getting cooked and how do you know how far along you are? What is the perfect level? How do you know when you’re in the danger zone? That’s where we come in with this handy little list of tell-tale signs.

  1. I’m feeling pretty chill, might only have a few and take it easy

This is the most common lie we tell ourselves at festivals. You rock up fresh faced and in absolute denial of the tom-foolery that is about to take place within the grassy fields, you’re so taken aback by the beauty and the all round good vibes that you just want to sit back and take it all in. That’s fine, but for no longer than 10 minutes, max. You’re not here to sit and smell the roses, you’re here to fuck and get fucked up. So stop acting like a little bitch, crack open a beer (while they’re still cold) and grow up.

  1. Oh shit yeah, now I’m feeling it

That glorious moment after you’ve casually consumed anywhere between one – five beers (depending on your tolerance), you can feel the party brewing and you know things are about to get silly. Your limbs might start to feel a little tingly, your ears warm and your cheeks red. You might start to zone out into a state of bliss, usually where you’ll ponder over how lucky you are to have the friends you do and to be where you are at that exact moment in time. Beware – this can often be the stage in which people get sleepy, or even worse, soppy. Push on, follow that party urge you feel inside you.

  1. Almost fully razzed (the breaking of the seal)

At this stage you’ve pushed passed the soppy emotions, the sleepiness and the idiotic thought that you were going to take it easy tonight. Congrats! If you’ve broken the seal already, which by now it’s almost impossible that you haven’t, be prepared to pee a lot. It’s usually at this stage, after having broken said seal, that you’ll find yourself sitting on the toilet wondering when things got so fuzzy and you got so drunk. After that all important moment of self realisation, you burst out of the toilet and stumble back to your friends to consume yet another beer and sloppily yell things in each others faces.

  1. The perfect level

This is the stage where you’re likely to have the most fun. You are guarded by the armour of liquid courage and damn right you’re gonna pull that hot chick you’ve been eying off all night. You’re in the mosh, singing and dancing, throwing your arms around and tripping all over everything. You make at least 10 new besties in the mosh, take a couple of selfies, maybe some videos in which the background noise is entirely you singing terribly but you couldn’t give less of a fuck. This is you in your prime! Enjoy it while it lasts! It is important at this stage to keep the vibes high and your friends close. You will get ultimate enjoyment out of this most glorious stage of getting pissed if you’re around people that you like.

  1. Well, fuck (almost always literally)

This is the final and (often) the most risky stage of getting pissed. Some cry, some vomit, some keep drinking until the early hours of the morning and some disappear completely. Don’t be alarmed when things become a big blurry mash up of events, and some are wiped from your memory forever. It is at this point in the night you will most likely retreat back to your tent with a special someone and engage in some good old fashioned sloppy tent sex. You’ll be less than graceful and hell, your neighbours are almost definitely going to hear you but it’s important to remember to ask for forgiveness, not permission. Make sure you have water nearby because trust us, as soon as the morning sun hits your tent, you’re gonna need it. Well done comrade, you have made it to the final stage of getting pissed at a festival.

Now that you’re well acquainted with the five stages of getting pissed at a festival, you’re officially qualified (and hereby invited) to join us for the rest of our summer festivals! If music is your chosen vice, then why not come and get pissed with us at Sziget? If it’s a big ol’ food festival you’re after, La Tomatina is the one for you. If it’s simply beer you want then you’ll be right at home amongst our other 2000+ campers at Oktoberfest! Or even better still, get your hot little hands on the most flexible passport of them all, the Stoke Passport, and be front and centre for all the action!

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