"If you plan to enjoy a night..." Oslo Local Custom Tip by planB76

Oslo Local Customs: 147 reviews and 243 photos

If you plan to enjoy a night on the town with locals, you need to be aware of the typically Norwegian night life phenomenon called a 'vorspiel'. The Norwegians have given this German word an entirely new meaning: 'Pre-party' - a party before the real party, where a few beers, glasses of wine or maybe a couple of longdrinks are consumed.

The reason for this ritual is simple. As you may have discovered, alcohol and tobacco are heavily taxed in Norway. Consequently, young people in Norway make a 'vorspiel' at somebody's apartment before going out, to get a little ?tipsy? in a budget fashion. They bring home brew, alcohol bought in shops, the Wine Monopoly, or stolen from their parents? wine cellar, put on some records, tell about the latest incidents and get on the good foot. This is often very good fun, sometimes even more amusing than the bar/clubbing bit that follows. At a 'vorspiel' everybody is cheerful and still have great expectations to what experiences the night will bring.

Unfortunately, 'vorspiels' may also lead to people getting totally wasted before even reaching the doorstep of a club. Be aware, as you may encounter a lot of half-digested pizza on your night out in Oslo. And if you feel that sober Norwegians enjoy practising their English, those you meet at a 'vorspiel' are truly blabbering away.

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  • Updated Aug 26, 2002
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