Tobias Stoffels

DMNW On the Road: The Craziest Things We Learned About Airbeat One Festival in Germany

Would you ever travel to an airfield in middle-of-nowhere Germany, to attend a music festival full of your favorite artists- despite not really knowing the language, the public transportation system, what the weather is like, etc? Would you take that relative leap into the European unknown? Don’t know about you, but we would. And did.

Airbeat One Festival is the largest music festival in Northern Germany, and one of the biggest in all of Europe. Taking place a week before Tomorrowland, Airbeat One attracts some of the biggest names year-after-year as artists make their way to Belgium to perform at arguably the biggest festival in the world. This year’s Airbeat One was promised to be the best one yet.

Neustadt-Glewe Flugplatz (airfield): Home of Airbeat One Festival. (Photo: Steffen Schulze / Airbeat One Festival (on Facebook))

With a ridiculously stacked lineup, and stages from trance powerhouse Transmission Festival, and hardstyle juggernaut Q-Dance, we decided to pack our bags, grab our passports, and journey into the heart of North Deutschland earlier this month during our European adventure.

Here are 25 things we learned at our first Airbeat One:

1. If you take the train to the festival, German police will be the first ones to greet you as soon as you get off. And there will be a lot of them.

2. Attendees dress in casual attire. Most guys wore shorts and a t-shirt.

3. Most women wore pants and a t-shirt. ALL women were clothed. No pasties, g-strings, fishnets, etc. Much different than what you see at festivals in America.

4. Kandi isn’t a thing. Instead, we saw people wearing wristbands from other festivals.

5. Spirit hoods, also not a thing.

6. Onesies are cool though!

7. German dudes are tall! I’m 5’10; they made me feel much shorter.

A cashless wristband “refill” station. Could this be a common sight at festivals in America sooner, rather than later? (Photo: Stanley Sutton / DMNW)

8. Credit cards and cash aren’t accepted inside the festival. The event is cashless. What you do is load money onto your festival wristband at a loading station. Vendors scan your wristband when you want to make a purchase. Could we see more festivals go 100% cashless in North America?

9. If you try to take photos or snaps, you WILL be photobombed by randoms.

10. Selfies are acceptable though! Especially at the mainstage area.

11. Riddim isn’t popular here. At all.

12. Psytrance, hardstyle, and big room on the other hand….ESPECIALLY hardstyle. That stage was packed from start, all the way to its 8am finish the following morning!

The Massive Q-Dance Hardstyle Stage by Day (Photo: Stanley Sutton / DMNW)

The Massive Q-Dance Hardstyle Stage by Night (Photo: Stanley Sutton / DMNW)

13. Tiesto, Hardwell, and CARNAGE are kings here.

14. Mosh pits will open, but only on artist command.

15. The festival begins in the afternoon, and ends around 0800 the following morning! The mainstage shuts down at 0300, but there are 3 other stages that keep the party going into the sunrise.

16. The party is non-stop in the campgrounds.

17. Being sober is cool, and the popular thing to do.

18. You will make new friends. Even if you can’t understand each other because of a language barrier!

19. There are carnival rides galore. Almost as many as EDC Vegas!

20. Ran-D’s “Zombie” cover is the current hardstyle national anthem.

21. In true German fashion, there is a Jaegermeister tent on site, and it is amazing.

The Mainstage. This year’s theme: Great Britain. (Photo: Stanley Sutton / DMNW)

22. VIP areas are HUGE and provide for some terrific views.

23. Knowing some basic German will do you wonders- especially when ordering food.

24. Very few visitors are from other countries. Guessing 98% of attendees were German. A noticeable amount of Swiss though.

25. The best production we’ve ever experienced in-person. Each stage made our jaw drops.

Airbeat One returns to Neustadt-Glewe’s airfield next year, July 10-14, 2019. Have you ever gone to a festival in Europe? Did you notice differences/similarities between Pacific Northwest festival crowds and European ones? Let us know in the comments below!