Moving to Sweden From UK – The Complete Guide

Moving to Sweden From UK – The Complete Guide

Moving to Sweden From UK – The Complete Guide

Everything You Need to Know About Moving to Sweden

Over 2,500 UK professionals relocated to Sweden in 2023, drawn by its thriving tech scene, generous work-life balance, and consistently high ranking on quality-of-life indexes. Whether you’re an ambitious professional seeking career opportunities, a family seeking a safe and enriching environment, or a student eager to experience world-class education, Sweden offers a compelling combination of factors. For those considering the exciting prospect of moving to Sweden, Schepens, a leading provider of removals to Sweden for over 30 years, can help ensure a smooth and stress-free transition to your new life.


Sweden’s Appeal – Spaciousness, Nature, and Happiness

For those accustomed to the hustle and bustle of a small island nation like Great Britain, the vastness of the untouched Swedish landscape holds an undeniable allure. Imagine a landscape twice the size of the UK with only one-fifth the population, dense forests blanketing much of the land, and untouched wilderness stretching across the north. And while it may not be an island, water defines Sweden’s character with its 3,000 km coastline and 100,000 sparkling lakes.

But Sweden’s beauty is only part of the story. It’s also a nation consistently ranked among the happiest in the world. Since 2013, the World Happiness Report has consistently placed Sweden in the top ten, highlighting factors like:

  • High trust. Swedes have strong faith in their institutions and fellow citizens.
  • Personal freedom. Individuals enjoy significant autonomy in life decisions.
  • Low income inequality. Sweden strives for equitable wealth distribution.
  • Strong governance. High standards are consistently maintained by government and institutions.

Feeling the pull of Scandinavia ? Then let Schepens be your guide! Our “Moving to Sweden from the UK” guide, informed by extensive research and feedback from UK citizens who have already made the move, provides invaluable insights in two sections:

  • Before You Leave the UK – Practical steps for visa applications, paperwork, and logistics.
  • When You Arrive in Sweden – Navigating daily life, setting up your home, and adapting to Swedish culture.

We’ve carefully curated the information based on what a survey we carried out amongst movers either living permanently, or working temporarily in Sweden revealed: the top 10 areas UK citizens wished they’d known more about before relocating to Sweden.

Here are their top 10:

  • Making friends and creating a support network
  • Cultural differences
  • Calculating a rough budget for life in Sweden
  • Removals to Sweden
  • Local knowledge
  • Finding somewhere to live
  • Healthcare
  • Work culture in Sweden
  • Laws that may affect me
  • Transport locally and across the country
moving to sweden

While our guide addresses the practicalities of relocation, we know your Swedish journey extends far beyond paperwork and checklists. That’s why we also take a look at Swedish culture, exploring customs, lifestyle, and social nuances. Moving abroad, even temporarily, reshapes your worldview and becomes an adventure we want you to embrace fully. This guide equips you with the knowledge and understanding to navigate these cultural differences with confidence and fully enjoy your Swedish experience.

BEFORE YOU LEAVE

Budgeting for Your New Life

The buzz about Sweden’s cost of living might leave you with more questions than answers. Here, we peel back the layers to reveal some surprising truths and help you estimate what your life in Sweden could look like, financially speaking.

Budgeting Tools for Peace of Mind

Websites like Numbeo are a great resource when planning your budget. They offer detailed price breakdowns for everyday expenses like rent, groceries, dining out, and clothing. The cherry on top? You can compare these costs between Swedish and UK cities. Brace yourself for some unexpected comparisons!

Despite Sweden’s reputation for high prices they are lower than their London equivalent in most cases. Except when it comes to groceries which are nearly 1.5% higher.

Cost of Living Comparison Between London and Stockholm

  • Consumer Prices in Stockholm are 14.9% lower than in London (without rent)
  • Consumer Prices Including Rent in Stockholm are 30.8% lower than in London
  • Rent Prices in Stockholm are 51.0% lower than in London
  • Restaurant Prices in Stockholm are 23.6% lower than in London
  • Groceries Prices in Stockholm are 2.6% higher than in London
  • Local Purchasing Power in Stockholm is 12.7% higher than in London

Once you have your Numbeo snapshot of prices, you could follow up with a search of Reddit, or Quora. If you can’t find what you’re looking for, post some questions of your own. Often this kind of research puts you in touch with people who’ve gone through a similar experience and can offer fascinating insights into managing a budget in a new country.

Rental costs are key to knowing what your standard of living will be; take a look at this overview of average rental costs for 2023/24 in Stockholm. You’ll quickly get an idea of what kind of property, and which locations you’re going to be able to afford. If you’re ready for a deep dive you can also start to factor in daily travel costs, internet packages, utilities etc.

Once you know what an average month in Sweden is going to cost, you can set it against your monthly income.

Sweden Cost of living

Documentation You’ll Need

Don’t underestimate the amount of documentation that is needed to set up your new life in Sweden.

sweden visa application
  • Passport (must have 6 months left on it)
  • Visa or Work Permit
  • Birth Certificate
  • Medical Records
  • Insurance documents
  • School Records (for children of school age)
  • National Insurance Number
  • Marriage Certificate (if appropriate)
  • Driver’s License
  • Tax Records
  • Divorce/Child Custody Papers (if appropriate)
  • Adoption Papers (if appropriate)
  • Pet Vaccination Records (if appropriate)

Anyone itching to explore Sweden by car is in for a major treat! There are some classic scenic drives just waiting for you. We would recommend:

  • The Blue Drive. This actually starts in Norway and ends in Russia! The Swedish part of the drive runs from west to east and takes in a sparsely populated area which is rich in forestry and lakes.
  • The Wilderness Road. This aptly named route takes you into the north of Sweden. It’s stretches across 500km and through mountain ranges, and over the extraordinary Stekenjokk Plateau.
driving in sweden

Just a couple of words of caution: if you’re caught committing a minor driving offence whilst driving in Sweden, you could be given an on-the-spot fine of up to 4,000 SEK (around £340). Apart from that, remember to drive on the right, always check out weather conditions before driving, and ENJOY!


Emergency Funds For Your Swedish Move

Moving abroad for work or life is an exciting adventure, but it can also come with unexpected challenges. That’s where a robust emergency fund becomes your invaluable safety net, providing peace of mind and financial security during those crucial settling-in months.

Why an Emergency Fund is Essential

Imagine facing unexpected medical expenses before your Swedish healthcare coverage starts, or encountering a delay in receiving your first paycheck. An emergency fund acts as a buffer, protecting you from such financial bumps in the road and ensuring you can navigate these initial hurdles with confidence.

Calculating Your Emergency Fund

To determine the ideal size of your emergency fund, consider your estimated monthly living expenses in Sweden. Aim to save at least 2-3 months’ worth of these expenses, providing a comfortable cushion for unforeseen situations. Expenses can include:

  • Rent or mortgage payments
  • Groceries and utilities
  • Transportation costs
  • Phone and internet bills
  • Social activities and entertainment

Building Your Fund

Start saving early and consistently, even if it’s just a small amount each week or month. Consider setting up automatic transfers to your emergency fund account to ensure steady growth. Remember, every bit saved adds to your safety net.

Using Your Emergency Fund Wisely

Reserve your emergency fund for genuine unforeseen needs, such as:

  • Urgent medical expenses
  • Unexpected repairs or appliance breakdowns
  • Temporary job loss or income disruption
  • Travel disruptions or delays

Avoid dipping into your emergency fund for everyday expenses or planned purchases. Treat it as a dedicated safety net for those unforeseen moments.


Finding Somewhere to Live

Whether you’re embarking on a year-long contract or planning a longer stay, finding your ideal home in Sweden is an important step. For most professionals, renting offers flexibility and convenience, especially with its unique advantages. Sweden’s robust rent control system ensures fair and predictable rental costs compared to other European countries. Also the standard of rental properties in Sweden is extremely high, you’ll enjoy well-equipped kitchens, reliable broadband, and efficient central heating

Sweden offers various rental options to suit your needs and timeframe:

Short-Term Rentals (Ideal for temporary stays):

  • Finding a place. Popular platforms like Hemnet and Blocket list short-term rentals. Airbnb can also be an option, though regulations may apply.
  • Simple Process. Provide your passport and proof of income for hassle-free lease arrangements.
  • Cost Considerations. Short-term rentals often have similar rates to long-term options, but offer increased flexibility.

Long-Term Rentals (For extended stays):

  • Landlord-Managed Rentals. These are highly desireable because of their stability but can be harder to find. You’ll need a Swedish Identity Number, employment contract, and income proof.
    Sublets. More readily available, but often come with slightly higher monthly costs. Research carefully and check the sublease agreement terms.

Pro Tips for Your Search:

  • Start Early. Begin your search well in advance, especially for coveted first-hand contracts.
  • Consider Locations. Explore different areas based on your needs and preferences. Proximity to work, public transportation, and amenities can impact your choice.
  • Utilise Resources. Websites like Bostadsmarknaden, Samtrygg, and Facebook groups for expats in Sweden can offer valuable insights and listings.
  • Seek Professional Help. Consider engaging a relocation specialist or real estate agent familiar with the Swedish housing market. They can navigate the language barrier and paperwork, saving you time and stress.

A good place to start is this guide to renting in Sweden.


Healthcare – Navigating the Transition from UK to Sweden

Moving to Sweden means embracing a new healthcare system, and the thought of navigating the transition can be worrying. Planning a bridge between the two systems can help you to avoid any gaps.

Preparing for the Gap:

  • Plan Ahead. Schedule an appointment with your current UK GP before your move. Discuss your upcoming relocation and any ongoing medication needs. They can ensure you have enough prescriptions to last until you register with a Swedish doctor.
  • Digital Records. Request a digital copy of your medical records. This valuable document will provide your new Swedish doctor with a comprehensive overview of your health history, facilitating smoother continuity of care.

Connecting with Your Swedish GP

  • Registering. Once in Sweden, register with your local “vårdcentral” (healthcare center). This will entitle you to access primary healthcare services.
  • Making an Appointment. Scheduling an appointment can be done online or by phone. Remember, wait times can vary, so plan accordingly.
  • Your First Visit. Bring your UK medical records and any relevant prescriptions to your initial appointment. The doctor will review your health history and discuss your ongoing needs.

Language – Do You Need to Speak Swedish?

If you move to Sweden without a word of Swedish you’ll probably never find yourself in a situation where you can’t be understood. Swedes have very high levels of fluency in spoken English, to the extent that for many of them it’s a second language.

So, do you need to speak Swedish to live and/or work in Sweden?

Here’s 3 reasons why doing so might give you a deeper understanding of the country:

learn swedish language
  1. Making Emotional Connections. Learning a new language means blundering every now and again. Which can be the perfect way to start a conversation, laugh together, or simply accept help. Learning the language helps you to make friends in your new country.
  2. Improve Your Status at Work. Many businesses are happy to work with non Swedish speakers, but not knowing the language limits your potential. There will always be emails you can’t read or phone calls you’ll need to hand over.
  3. Understand the Culture. As a visitor to Sweden it’s easy to skate over the surface of the culture, enjoying it as a tourist. Learning Swedish helps you to dive deeper, find out what people are talking about, experience the humour, and spend time with Swedes.

Local Knowledge – Which Restaurants Will You Try?

After a day with your head buried in the admin that every move entails, it’s a good idea to do a bit of fun research about where you’ll be living. One of the most exciting things about moving to a new country is the opportunity it gives you to try new kinds of food, shop in unfamiliar ways, and experience new kinds of social events. TripAdvisor is a great starting point for this kind of research.


Pets

If you have a pet that you want to take with you to Sweden, you’ll need to check out the requirements for ‘bringing a pet into Sweden’. You may take a look at the requirements and decide that this is a job for the pet relocation professionals! They will take care of scheduling flights, managing customs and transfers at each end.

Ultimately, you’ll need to make your decisions based on what’s right for your pet. Their age, health and temperament will determine quite a few of the decisions you make about your move to Sweden.


Removals to Sweden

Finding the right removals company can make the process of moving to Sweden from the UK seem surprisingly simple. Choose the wrong company and it will make the whole experience miserable. After decades of helping people to move to Sweden from the UK, we have put together a checklist of things to look out for when choosing your European Removals Company:

Questions to Ask When Choosing a Removals Company for Moving to Sweden

You want to know that the company you choose has been established for a while. Fly-by-night companies come and go – you need to be able to rely on your removals team.

Ideally you would want a removals company that specialises in removals to Sweden. They will have experience with Swedish customs, routes, driving in winter, and regulations. They will also be able to give you the most informed advice and guidance to help with your move.

A company that makes regular runs to Sweden will be able to offer you a more competitive price than one that will need to schedule in a special journey for your move. They will also be able to offer flexible scheduling and provide full, or part load shipping.

You’ll probably want to compare 3 or 4 companies before making your choice. Beware free quotations that offer a ‘ball park figure’; these are rarely accurate. A detailed quote, taking into account the specifics of your move will help you to plan your budget with precision.

Look on the website and social media for up-to-date reviews over the past few months. Pay special attention to people who’ve made the same kind of move as yours.

Look for professional accreditations such as: British Association of Removers, ISO 9001, or FIDI FAIM

You will want the peace of mind that comes with knowing that your goods are covered throughout their journey from the UK to Sweden.

If you’re moving to Sweden a fixed-term work contract, you may want to put your goods in storage in order to rent out your home whilst you’re away. Local storage in the UK, linked to your removals company, will save you a good deal of time and effort. Once you’re in Sweden, you may need storage for your goods whilst you are sorting out your accommodation.

Most removals companies equipped with a fleet of removals vehicles can schedule your move with around a month’s notice.

When managing overseas removals there’s rarely time to pack up the house as well as everything else. Most removals companies provide professional packing services, using sturdy cartons and packing materials.


Residence Permits – Work Visas for UK Professionals

Since the UK’s departure from the EU in 2020, the landscape for professionals seeking to work in Sweden has shifted. While securing a job remains the first step, navigating the visa process now requires some additional considerations.

Securing Your Work Permit:

The journey begins with securing a job offer from a Swedish employer. Once confirmed, your employer will initiate the work permit application process, which involves:

  • Your employer submits details of your role, and your basic details to the Swedish Migration Agency.
  • You’ll receive instructions about the application process for you (and your family, if applicable).
  • Compiling the required documentation, including proof of qualifications and skills.
  • Paying the application fee.

The Migration Agency’s Scrutiny

Following submission, the Migration Agency will carefully assess your application. This may involve additional requests for information or documentation.

Reaching Your Destination:

Upon approval, you’ll receive your work visa, granting you the right to relocate to Sweden. Once settled, you’ll register with the Swedish Population Register to access essential services and benefits.

Swedish Weather/Climate

The Swedes love to talk about the weather as much as we do in the UK, because there’s variation throughout the year and each of the seasons has a distinct personality. We tend to think about long winters and long summer days in relation to Sweden. This is largely true but there are variations across the country.

Stockholm enjoys 17 hours of daylight in the summer and just 6 hours in the winter. The city temperatures climb to around 23°C in July and August, but plummet to -1°C in midwinter. Perhaps the greatest difference between Stockholm and London lies in the amount of snow that falls. If you yearn for a white Christmas, the odds of getting one are higher in Sweden than in the UK. On average, snow falls for 10 day throughout December.

stockholm weather

WHEN YOU ARRIVE IN SWEDEN

Apps – Find the Ones Locals Use

Moving to Sweden is an exciting adventure, but finding your way around and connecting with others can be daunting. Here’s where embracing local apps can play a game-changer! By stepping out of your UK-centric bubble and exploring Sweden’s digital terrain, you’ll unlock a wealth of resources and opportunities to feel at home.

Connecting with your Community

  • Meetup. Join themed groups, discover events near you, and connect with people who share your interests. Whether it’s hiking enthusiasts, board game players, or fellow dog owners, you’ll find your tribe in no time.
  • Joi. This video chat app puts a twist on social connection, allowing you to meet locals and expats spontaneously through quick video calls. Practice your Swedish, swap tips, and make instant friends!

Discovering the City

  • Citymapper. Navigate public transportation seamlessly with real-time updates, journey planning, and interactive maps. Explore your city like a local and never get lost again.
  • Resuméappen. Craving Swedish cuisine? This app showcases the best restaurants and cafes in your area, complete with user reviews and ratings. Discover hidden gems and savor the local flavors.

Making Daily Life Easier

  • Swish. Ditch cash and embrace Sweden’s cashless society with this ubiquitous mobile payment app. Pay for everything from groceries to coffee with a simple tap of your phone.

While local apps are a fantastic starting point, don’t underestimate the power of personal connections. Join language classes, volunteer in your community, or engage in activities you enjoy. Building genuine friendships takes time, but the warmth and support of Swedish connections will enrich your experience beyond measure.


bank in sweden

Bank Account

One of the first things you’ll need to do once you’ve arrived in Sweden is to set up a local bank account. The Swedish banking system is pretty simple to navigate so you shouldn’t have too much trouble getting up and running. You can then use it for your salary, paying utility bills and for saving money on international fees.

There are 4 high profile banks in Sweden:

  • Swedbank
  • Nordea
  • Handelsbanken
  • SEB.

Banking hours are 10-4pm, Monday to Friday. The simplest way to open your account is by visiting your local branch. You’ll need your passport, your Swedish ID card and proof of address, but check on the bank’s website to see if there’s anything else required.



Cultural Differences

No matter how much you love your new home, and relish the challenges of a new and diverse workplace, you will bump up against a number of cultural differences. These can be exciting, even exhilarating, but the common message they deliver is that ‘you are different and don’t belong’. Some people thrive on the challenge of adapting. For others it’s a daunting and uncomfortable task.

Culture shock is a feeling of disorientation that occurs when you encounter a new way of life which is unfamiliar to you. This could be as small as feeling knocked back by someone at work, or realising you don’t know how to pay a bill. Suddenly you are forced to become a beginner again, and to learn things that you have always taken for granted in your native culture.

Everyone deals with culture shock differently. Some people find it helpful to understand it as a journey with distinct staging posts:

culture shock stages

This is the good bit – when you’ve just arrived and everything is fascinating and wonderful. You’re intrigued by the food, the shops, the natural environment. You have no doubt that you’ve made the right decision and every day feels like an adventure.

The energy that sustains you through the honeymoon period wears out after a while, and a fatigue with things being different sets in. This shows itself in a creeping frustration. Anything can set it off; people misunderstanding you in a shop; not knowing how to order a takeaway; discovering you’re not part of a social event at work. Suddenly life feels unbearably hard every single day and you think you may want to go home.

Human beings are endlessly adaptable; it’s how we’ve survived for so long. Gradually you’ll find ways to cope with feeling a bit lost. The city will become easier to navigate, shopping will get less stressful and people will start to recognise you. Little by little you’ll begin to feel like you belong in this new life.

This is a good place to be; it’s the acceptance stage where you stop trying to wrestle the culture round to what you want, and accept it’s different. Once you stop fighting and comparing, you can take a step back and relax. You’ll like some things and dislike others – just like home – but all you can do is fit in where you can and keep learning.


education in sweden

Education

Schooling is student-centred in Sweden, which means that young people have the choice of where they go to school and whether or not to continue their education after the age of 15. As this is just one of many choices they are able to make in the course of their schooling, there are hardly any ‘drop-outs’ from the system. In fact the record of attendance and attainment is extremely high.

Compulsory education begins at 6 but pre-school options are available from 1 year. Primary schooling runs from 6-15 years. Secondary school starts at 16 and runs for 3 years. You have a choice of public schools, funded locally, private schools, and international schools. If your children will be at school in Sweden for a short period only, the international school system will ensure they stay up to date with their home curriculum.


Healthcare

If you have a job in Sweden, and you’re registered with the Swedish Tax Agency, you will have access to the excellent Swedish healthcare system in the same way as native Swedes. The system isn’t entirely free, but the fees you pay are very reasonable. A standard visit to the GP costs between 11-22 euros, and a specialist appointment costs around 40 euros. Hospital stays cost 12 euros per day for 10 days, and then this sum is halved.

Once you are registered in the tax system you’ll be assigned a doctor in your local area. You can, however,  select a doctor of your choice. The 1177 website gives you loads of useful information about finding doctors and healthcare services.


Making Friends and Creating a Support Network

Not everyone finds making new friends easy, and trying to create friendships in a new country can be really tough. Quite apart from the language barrier, you’re also a ‘foreigner’ trying to break in to already established groupings. Like it or loathe it, though, you’re going to need a support network in Sweden, especially during the early months of your adjustment to a new culture and way of life.

We’ve come up with 5 ways to meet people in your new home:

  • Find an Expat Group Nearby. This is the easiest option and it’s a way to find people who will know what you’re going through. Use local apps to locate expat groups, or search in Facebook Groups for your city. You’ll probably have to make a request to join.
  • Look for a Language Exchange. If you’re learning Swedish, find a conversation partner. Most Swedish cities have Language Exchange meet ups and you can choose the level of proficiency you feel happy with. You’ll get to improve your Swedish, and meet new people.
  • Get Crafting, or Cooking. Swedes enjoy arts and crafts, or cooking get togethers. Find a club that appeals to you and go along. The pressure won’t be so great because you’ll be focusing on ‘doing’, but you’ll get to know a group of people with shared interests over time.
  • Volunteer. If you’ve volunteered in the past, you’ll know how great it is for getting to know people from all kinds of different backgrounds. Find out what’s on offer in your local area and join in. It will give you a deep dive into the city and a group of new contacts all in one.
  • Get Involved in a Sport. Whether you’re into running, hiking or football there are groups across Sweden you can join. And the great thing is that sports activities tend to end up with drinks in the pub, or a eating meal together.
making friends in sweden

Places to Live in Sweden

The four most popular destinations for UK movers are Stockholm, Gothenburg, Malmö and Uppsala. But what’s it like to live in each of these cities? We asked some of our movers, who are now living in Sweden, to give us a snapshot of life in Swedish cities.

move to stockholmIt’s a city that’s spread across 14 islands, bordered by the Baltic Sea and Lake Mälaren, and it’s pretty unique. The streets are clean, and safe; the culture is Green and liberal, and the population is globally diverse. Stockholm is known for its ‘start ups’ especially in tech, and it’s characterised by a young and entrepreneurial workforce.

move to malmoMalmö is just a 30 minute drive across the Øresund Bridge to Copenhagen. So even though the city is on the other side of Sweden to the capital, there good access to city life. Malmö is beloved of young Swedes and it has a hipster vibe because of this. Very laid back, very diverse, a great city to work in.

move to gothenburgThis is a city with a stunning location. Gothenburg is on the dramatic west coast, around 3 hours north of Malmö. It has two universities which means the population is young and the nightlife is good. Business and academe has a good working relationship which has turned the city into something of an innovation hub. Oh, and Gothenburg hosts the largest film festival in Scandinavia.

move to uppsalaUppsala is home to the oldest university in Sweden. Founded in the 15th century, the university is the heart of the town, drawing students from across the world. The city is located just 70 km north of Stockholm, so it’s a popular location for people looking to live outside the capital. During the summer the population shrinks by around half as students travel home. For some residents this is the best time of the year; other describe it as a ‘ghost town’.


Public Transport and Commuting in Sweden

Whether you prefer the convenience of public transport or the freedom of the open road, Sweden offers efficient and reliable options to get you around. Here’s a glimpse into what you can expect:

Public Transport:

  • Clean, Efficient, and Punctual. Sweden’s public transport system is renowned for its cleanliness, efficiency, and impressive punctuality. Trains, buses, trams, and ferries connect cities, towns, and even archipelagos seamlessly.
  • Multiple Modes. Explore diverse options like high-speed trains, regional trains, extensive bus networks, charming trams in cities like Gothenburg and Stockholm, and even scenic ferry journeys across archipelagos.
  • Planning Tools. Make informed travel choices with user-friendly tools like Resrobot, which details routes, schedules, and transfer connections. Consider pre-purchasing tickets online or through apps like SL and Västtrafik for added convenience.
  • Cost and Options. While subsidised, public transport in Sweden can be more expensive than in some other countries. Explore options like commuter cards for frequent travelers or consider alternative modes for shorter trips.

Driving:

  • Pleasurable Experience. Driving in Sweden is often a joy, with wide, well-maintained roads and stunning scenery. Traffic congestion is generally low, especially outside major cities.
  • Winter Preparedness. Remember that winter tyres are mandatory between December and March, ensuring safety on snow-covered roads. Keep your headlights on at all times for improved visibility.
  • Parking and Costs. Parking regulations can vary, so be mindful of signs and designated zones. Fuel costs are generally higher than in some other countries.

Beyond the Options:

  • Cycling. Sweden’s cycling culture offers a healthy and eco-friendly way to explore. Extensive and well-maintained bike paths make it a joy to get around on two wheels.
  • Walking. Many cities are pedestrian-friendly, with walkable distances and dedicated pedestrian zones. Lace up your shoes and experience the vibrant atmosphere at your own pace.

Sports

While the passion for football might be a bridge between Sweden and the UK, their athletic landscapes unfold in distinct ways. Let’s dive into the heart of Swedish sports, where dedication dances with the majesty of the natural world.

sweden sports

Beyond the Pitch – Reframing Swedish Football

Yes, football holds a special place in the hearts of Swedes, but labelling it simply “mediocre” would be a disservice to their commitment and athleticism. While the nation may not boast the sheer number of mega-cities as the UK, the dedication of young players and the professionalism of the leagues paint a vibrant picture. From Zlatan Ibrahimović’s iconic legacy to the rising stars of today, Swedish football is a tapestry woven with skill, determination, and a hunger for success.

Embracing the Great Outdoors

Beyond the polished world of organised sports, the true spirit of Swedish athletics lies in embracing the vast expanses of their natural environment. Hiking trails snake through ancient forests, inviting exploration at every turn. Cycling paths weave through charming villages and breathtaking landscapes, offering a healthy and scenic way to experience the country’s beauty.

Embracing the Great Outdoors
Water, Winter, and the Thrill of Adventure

Water, Winter, and the Thrill of Adventure

For the water-lovers, Sweden’s countless lakes and rivers beckon with opportunities for swimming, kayaking, and even the occasional dip in a natural thermal spring. And when winter casts its frosty spell, the Nordic nation transforms into a wonderland for skiers and snowboarders. From gentle slopes for beginners to heart-pounding black runs for the adrenaline-seekers, Swedish ski resorts cater to every level of adventurer.

Facing the Rapids

For those who crave a rush of adrenaline, Sweden also offers its own brand of aquatic adventure: canoeing in its “fairly terrifying rivers.” These white-water challenges are not for the faint of heart, but for the skilled paddlers who dare to navigate the churning rapids and icy waters, the experience is akin to communing with the untamed spirit of nature itself.

Facing the Rapids

More Than Just Games

Swedish sports are not just about achieving athletic prowess; they are about connecting with the land, embracing the elements, and forging a deep bond with the natural world. Whether it’s the rhythmic crunch of hiking boots on a forest trail, the exhilaration of gliding down a snow-covered mountain, or the quiet satisfaction of casting a line into a glassy lake, Swedish sports offer a chance to reconnect with ourselves and the breathtaking beauty that surrounds us.


Tax Registration

As a new resident in Sweden, one of your first and most crucial steps is registering with the Swedish Tax Agency (Skatteverket). This process, known as “folkbokföring,” lays the foundation for your Swedish life, integrating you into various key systems:

  • Tax collection. The Tax Agency efficiently manages your tax obligations, ensuring smooth and transparent financial administration.
  • Personal identification. You’ll receive a unique “personnummer,” similar to a British National Insurance number, serving as your official identifier in Sweden. It’s essential for everyday activities like opening bank accounts, accessing healthcare, and even renting an apartment.
  • Marital status monitoring. Your registration reflects your marital status for official purposes.
  • Mailing address information. Ensure smooth communication by having your correct address on file with the authorities.
  • Insurance purposes. Registration facilitates access to Sweden’s robust social security system and relevant insurance benefits.

Beyond these practical benefits, registering with the Tax Agency is symbolic of becoming a recognised member of Swedish society. It opens doors to various opportunities and empowers you to navigate everyday life with ease.

The Power of the “Personnummer”:

Your “personnummer” is the key that unlocks many aspects of Swedish life. It’s used for:

  • Banking and finance. Open bank accounts, apply for loans, and manage your finances seamlessly.
  • Employment. Receive your salary and handle tax obligations through your “personnummer.”
  • Social security. Access healthcare services, social benefits, and pension plans as part of the Swedish system.
  • Official paperwork. Sign contracts, register vehicles, and complete legal documents with ease.

Registering Made Simple:

The Tax Agency website provides clear instructions and online forms for convenient registration. You can also visit a service center in person for assistance. Remember to bring relevant documents like your passport, proof of address, and employment contract (if applicable).

By prioritising your tax registration, you take a crucial step towards a smooth and fulfilling integration into Swedish life. It’s a gateway to enjoying the benefits and opportunities your new home offers.


5 Things About Working in Sweden

Differences in work culture shouldn’t be underestimated. Many of them are small, but they can make the difference between a good day at the office and feeling like you’ve landed from a different planet. Here are 5 key cultural differences to watch out for in the Swedish workplace:

  1. There’s no excuse for being late. Punctuality matters in Sweden in a way it doesn’t so much in the UK. Meetings start on time, and employees arrive and leave on the dot. This isn’t about people being ‘sticklers for the rules’ it’s a part of the culture and everyone buys in.
  2. Work colleagues and private friends. The Swedes like to keep a very clear dividing line between work and home. They enjoy their time with their family or friends and don’t want it encroached upon. Colleagues at work tend to be just that, therefore. There may be drinks after work, or coffee and cake, but the relationship will always retain a little formality.
  3. Fika is part of the working day. Many Swedish workplaces schedule in coffee breaks (fikas) in the morning and afternoon. These are times to socialise with colleagues and step away from your desk. They can last anything between 10 minutes and half-an-hour and they’re considered essential to the maintenance of a good working culture.
  4. Think week numbers, not months. In the UK we tend to talk about ‘the middle of June’, or ‘at the start of November’ when we’re scheduling in appointments. In Sweden it’s quite different. Week numbers are used instead, and the month may get used as a follow-up confirmation.
  5. Get your work done and go home. Forget working overtime in order to impress your boss. In Sweden there is no culture of selling your soul to the company. Working beyond the time you should finish is seen as a signal that you’re not coping. Swedes get their work done efficiently and leave the office punctually.
Working in Sweden

Are You Moving to Sweden From the UK?

Schepens has been providing stress-free removals to Sweden for over a century. We’re a family-run UK based removals company now in our 4th generation. Little wonder, you may think, that we’re the UK’s leading provider of when it comes to moving to Sweden from the UK. And it’s not just one-way traffic; we move as many people from Sweden to locations across the UK and Europe, as we do the other way around.

We specialise in moving families, solo professionals and students in the UK or Europe to locations across Sweden. The Schepens European removals team makes weekly runs to all the major cities in Sweden, including Jönköping where we have a depot. This means that we’re able to guarantee our clients affordable prices, flexible scheduling, and full or part load shipping.

At Schepens we don’t just get people moved; we care about our movers’ experience of removals from the UK to Sweden. A European move is always an upheaval, which is why we assign a move co-ordinator to each mover. They will create a tailored removals plan for you, and manage the logistics from start to finish.

“Thank you very much. My husband and I really felt like we could trust your service when we moved from the UK to Sweden. Thank you for the quick communication and updates and for handling our stuff with care!”

Rosa


Want to know more about how Schepens can help with moving to Sweden from the UK? Call us today on 01794 323558, or contact us online for a quick quote and a prompt response.