Inflation hits Germany's Oktoberfest

Inflation is pushing prices to record levels at Oktoberfest.

© Munich Tourism/Werner Böhm

Inflation is pushing prices to record levels at Oktoberfest.

© Munich Tourism/Werner Böhm Inflation hits Germany's Oktoberfest A one-litre mug of beer will cost 15% more at Germany's Oktoberfest than three years ago, and that's not the only thing likely to hit revellers at the world's largest beer festival.

The €10 mark for a one-litre mug of beer at Munich's Oktoberfest was broken for the first time in 2014. While that prompted an outcry at the time, visitors would be happy about such prices in 2022. With an average price of €13.35 for a mug of festival beer, the upcoming Oktoberfest from 17 September to 3 October is likely to be the most expensive ever.

A one-litre mug of beer will cost between €12.80 and €13.70 in the 16 festival tents. This means it will be a good 15% more expensive than at the last Oktoberfest in 2019, when you paid almost two euros less per mug.

Covid & Ukraine

The reasons for the price increases are many – and understandable. The enforcement of 2G rules (vaccinated and/or recovered from Covid) alone, which apply at the first Oktoberfest since the pandemic, has cost millions. Since entry is traditionally free, drink and food prices are one of the few financial levers available to organisers.

The pandemic and the war in Ukraine have also driven up commodity prices. Beer prices have already been increasing for some time. Brewers are currently paying nearly twice as much for their malt as they did a year ago. The energy-intensive glass industry, an important supplier to the brewing industry, has also been hit by soaring gas prices and is passing on at least part of the extra costs to beverage bottlers. 

Where is the cheapest beer?

You can enjoy the cheapest mug of beer at the Augustiner Festhalle. A litre of Edelstoff from a traditional 200-litre wooden barrel, called a Hirschen in Bavaria, costs €12.80 here. The Käfer Wiesn-Schänke, Schützenfestzelt and Marstall charge the most, at €13.70 each. Another tip for the cheapest beer: in the Museumszelt, where old Oktoberfest paraphernalia from wooden rides to historic shooting galleries are displayed, beer costs just €12.60. 

And the food?

Although food prices for the most part have not yet been set, revellers can expect increases here as well. As with beer, caterers are grappling with rising costs for everything from sunflower oil to gas-powered grills. Exactly how much that will hit festival goers in the pocket remains to be seen. However, it seems certain a standard half chicken is not going to be available for €11.70, as was the case in 2019 in Augustiner Festhalle.