GABF 2018: The Dates & Details You Need to Know

Did anyone else wake up this morning to realize that June is nearly over? Sunday we’ll be rolling into July, and maybe it’s just us, but this summer seems to be flying by. It’s enough to make us think about that quote from the famous prophet of our generation: “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.” Yessir, that Abe Froman certainly knows what he’s talking about. 

While we’re sad to see June wrapping up so fast, we’re pretty excited for July. Next month we look forward to lots of backyard barbeques and sweaty afternoons, the perfect setting for a few cold beers. We’re also excited because July is when tickets sales begin for the biggest & best fest around, the Great American Beer Festival, aka GABF. With GABF ticket sales happening in just a few weeks, now seems like a good time to cover all the dates and details you need to plan your GABF adventure! So grab your calendars and let’s get these dates penciled in before any more time slips away.

The 2018 Great American Beer Festival

In case you’re new here and not sure what all this fuss is about, the Great American Beer Festival (GABF) is the premier U.S. beer festival and competition. Since 1982, this festival brings brewers and beers from across the nation to Colorado for an annual gathering that is part competition, part beer festival, and all sorts of awesome. The festival has grown bigger and better each year, and this year they are expecting more than 4000 beers that you can sample on the festival floor! Simply put, GABF is a bucket-list beer festival.

2018 GABF Festival Details

GABF will take place September 20-22, 2018 at the Colorado Convention Center in Denver. There will be 4 individual tasting sessions. Tickets for each session includes festival admission, a festival program, commemorative tasting cup, and unlimited beer samples.

Ticket Sale Dates

Members* Presale – July 31, 2018 at 10:00 AM MT
General Public Sale – August 1, 2018 at 10:00 AM MT

All tickets will be sold via AXS, at or via the AXS app.

Individual Session Details

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During the ticket sales, there is a 6 ticket limit for general sessions and a 2 ticket limit for the Members Session.

*Members Presale 

American Homebrewer’s Association (AHA) and Brewer’s Association (BA) members are eligible to purchase tickets a day earlier than the general public and can get tickets to the general sessions for a reduced price. More importantly, only AHA and BA members can purchase tickets for the Saturday afternoon Members-Only Session. Yes, membership does have its privileges! Fortunately, it’s not too late for you to become a member. Join the AHA on or before July 18, 2018, at 11:59 p.m. MT to receive a Members-Only presale code via email in advance of the ticket sale date.


Elevate your GABF experience by purchasing PAIRED + GABF Tickets. At PAIRED, exclusive beers are served alongside small bites created by celebrated chefs, all in an intimate setting just off the GABF festival floor. Beers served at PAIRED cannot be found anywhere else at GABF, and the food selection is unbelievable! PAIRED takes place from 5:30 PM to 9:00 PM during the Thursday & Friday sessions. Tickets to PAIRED + GABF are $160 each, which includes admission to the GABF general session. For more information on PAIRED visit

Designated Driver Tickets

Designated Driver tickets are $30 and are available to all sessions during the ticket sale. Designated Drivers can walk around the festival and attend the various beer and food seminars. They also get access to hang out in the Designated Driver Lounge, where DD’s can enjoy complimentary snacks and non-alcoholic beverages, games, movies, and other perks, including a free gift!

Additional Details

For more information on GABF, including ticket sale FAQs and much more, visit

GABF 2018 Important Dates

Did we give you too much info about GABF? Is your head already spinning thinking about all the incredible beer you’ll be able to sample under one roof? Here’s a quick recap of the dates you need to remember:

July 18 … The last day for you to purchase or renew your AHA membership to be eligible for the Member Presale.

July 31 … The day of the Member Presale, happening at 10:00 AM MT via AXS.

August 1 … The day of the General Public Sale, happening at 10:00 AM MT via AXS.

September 17 … The day that GABF Week events start to pop up all around Denver. Visit the GABF website for event details as the festival gets closer.

September 19 … The day you need to download and/or update your MyGABF App so you have all the latest details on beers at the festival.

September 20-22 … The 3 days that the GABF sessions take place at the Colorado Convention Center.

September 22 … The day the GABF competition winners are announced! Get the list of winners on your MyGABF app or on the GABF website.

September 23 … The day you’re going to want to keep open so you can sleep in and recover from all that GABF fun!

Follow BMT for More GABF News

Of course, we will have lots of Great American Beer Festival coverage for you leading up to the big event. Visit Bottle Makes Three often for more GABF news before, during and after the festival. Also, follow us on Facebook and Twitter for live updates, photos and videos during the fest. Hopefully, we’ll see you there!

Want to read about last year’s winners, so you can plan to try their beer first this yet? Yeah, we’ve got your 2017 results, too. Check them out! 

Credit: The Brewtography Project

• Cheers Y’all! •