Do you need reservations to visit the tents?
No, you don’t. The exorbitant prices eBay sellers and scalpers quote result from the fact, that the beer tens are usually closed on Friday evenings and Saturdays for overcrowding. In this case, a reservation wrist band is your guaranteed entrance. It’s never a general requirement, though. Also, in order to find seats in the tents, reservations are, of course, very beneficial, but not a requirement. The large tents have to keep a quarter of their seating capacity free for spontaneous visitors at all times. On Saturdays, Sundays, and on October 3rd, even 50% are non-reserved before 3 pm and still 35% afterward.
If you’re only planning to visit the Oktoberfest this one time, you don’t need to get your hopes ups anyway. Evening and weekend reservations are only given to regular customers. Weekday lunchtime reservations are only valuable for larger groups at Hacker-Festzelt, Augustiner-Festhalle, or Ochsenbraterei. See our special site to find out more about Oktoberfest table reservations. Also, we provide the only overview on the web over available Oktoberfest reservations.