Living in Sweden

tomas_utsi-midnight_sun-1585It’s a great place to be!

A small country in the Northern Hemisphere with just 10 million inhabitants. Why is Sweden considered so attractive? Well, there are quite a few good reasons, some of which we have listed below:

  • Nature – Clean air, a stunning coastline and long summer nights! In addition, The Right of Public Access (Allemansrätten), gives everyone the right to enjoy Sweden’s outdoors. It allows the public to roam freely, even on private land, to camp overnight and to pick mushrooms and berries. The Right of Public Access is written into the Swedish constitution.  
  • Infrastructure – Taxes in Sweden are considered high, but you get a great deal in return! A free education system, a state-subsidised healthcare system and well functioning transport networks are all results of monies paid in to the state’s pockets.
  • Family friendly  When it comes to equality between the sexes, Sweden is one of the leaders. There are shared maternity/paternity leave arrangements, generous child benefit allowances and couples are entitled to 480 days of paid parental leave for younger school-age children, time which can be shared between both parents. A good work/life balance is considered a priority for all.
  • English speaking – With 9 years of compulsory English at school, most Swedes happily converse in English. You might have to insist to speak Swedish if you want to learn the language, as Swedes very much enjoy practicing their linguistic skills! 
  • Education – Pretty much all schools are state-funded, which means that there are no fees. Childcare, involving Pre-School, is heavily subsidised, and daily cooked meals are free for schoolchildren. Universities in Sweden are free for citizens of the EU/EEA or Switzerland. Several international schools are free of charge, but check their admissions policy to confirm eligibility.
  • Sustainability – Sweden is at the forefront of sustainable thinking, with far-reaching initiatives to be found at municipal level. Recycling is second nature to most people living in Sweden, with 8 different recycling sections in most households, and a system to return plastic bottles and cans to supermarket recycling points for a voucher or cash deposit refund.
  • Food culture – Swedes love good food and the range of organic produce is just getting better. Children at school get to learn what “Kostcirkeln” is from an early age, and the importance of a balanced diet. Drinking tap water is safe in Sweden and saves you both money and waste. And the Swedish Chef of 2014 does not look like the one in “The Muppet Show”!  
  • IT friendly – Sweden is a world leader when it comes to access to media technology such as digital TV, computers, mobile devices and internet. It’s also close to becoming a cashless society, where it’s perfectly normal to pay for one cup of coffee by bank card. 92% of Swedes have access to the internet and courses are available for all ages through the many Study Circles/Studiecirklar 
  • Beautiful capital – Frequently referred to as the “Venice of the North”, Stockholm is a gem of a city built on 14 islands, renowned for its beauty and world-class attractions. With an ice bar, boat trips, green parks, museums, medieval streets, a 17th Century warship, sky-high views, funfairs, Scandinavian chic and city swimming, there’s something for everyone!
  • Nordic NoirThe Killing, The Bridge, Borgen, Wallander – Scandi-drama has captivated TV audiences world-wide in the last few years, firmly putting Skåne and the Öresund region on the map and spawning a whole new genre, Nordic Noir. Walk in Wallander’s footsteps in Ystad, cross the beautiful Öresund Bridge with Saga and Michael, follow Sarah Lund and Birgitte Nyborg around Copenhagen – even Midsomer Murders based an episode here! Come and see what the rest of the world is talking about!