The opening of Oktoberfest is said to be good news for both beer lovers and the German economy.
Despite the formidable weather experienced by Munich in Germany, a million travellers made it the picturesque Bavarian region for the opening of Oktoberfest, the world’s largest festival. Not only has attendance rocketed sky-high but the amount of beer and bratwurst consumed over the weekend also reached in the millions.
Munich Mayor Dieter Reiter opened the 181st edition of the beer festival, first held in 1810 to mark the marriage of Prince Ludwig to Princess Therese of Saxe-Hildburghausen, by tapping the first keg.
The 16-day event is said to attract over six million visitors this year.
These figures are great news to the German economy.
While the tent extravaganza is said to be a rowdy affair, it is also known as a multi-cultural event, attracting thousands from all over the world – particularly Italy.
The surge of tourists not only tap into the kegs of world famous German beer but also pump the country’s tourist revenue.
The festival has become a booming business for Munich, with vendors, airlines, hotels and restaurants reaping millions of euros in profit.
According to The Guardian, the estimated 6.4 million Oktoberfest guests are thought to spend in the Bavarian capital in that fortnight, around €320 million on the grounds of the Oktoberfest alone. Hotels and hostels rake in just over €300 million, with some hiking room prices five, or even eight-fold.
The six official Munich breweries authorised to sell beer at the Oktoberfest are protected by city council edicts, ensuring that the beer money, at least, stays in the local economy. A total of 12,000 people find employment at the Oktoberfest each year.
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