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LIFE IN SWEDEN

All You Need To Know About Sweden

Introduction about Sweden

Guess what’s one of the largest European countries with a low population? It’s the Scandinavian region of Sweden, being the fifth largest country in Europe. The culture here of course is fascinating – Swedish people love to recycle as 50% of waste is recycled and the rest is burnt for energy. Donald Duck is the favourite Disney character of Sweden – they even have a tradition of watching this show on Christmas eve. Swedish people love carbonated beverages or soda known as Julmus, especially during the yuletide. Work-life balance is a priority in Sweden where they practice break twice daily where workers enjoy coffee, cake and chat – which is known as Fika. Maybe that’s why Swedish employees are the fourth happiest workforce in the world. If anyone has given up smoking with nicotine gum – thanks to Sweden, they came up with this. The majority of the people in Sweden live in urban areas. Collectively doesn’t it make Sweden a happy country?

Language Spoken, Currency Usage/ Spending Patterns

Spoken by almost 10 million people in the world, Sweden folks speak Swedish or ‘Svenska’- which has a grammatical structure similar to English & high vocabulary. The majority of Swedes are multilingual – around 200 languages are spoken in the country. The currency used in Sweden is krona SEK, whereas the bank notes are printed in the values 20, 50, 100, 200, 500 and 1,000 kronor, whilst coins are available as  1, 2, 5 and 10 kronor. However Swedish society is considered one of the most cashless societies as most of the shops and restaurants only accept mobile or plastic payments. Paying with contactless cards is the new practice in stores in Sweden. Many in Sweden use the app called ‘Swish’ which is connected with ‘Bank ID’ which has your social security number which is unique to do transactions.

Landscape & National Identities

Sweden is one-tenth larger than California and is the fourth largest region in Europe. The north of the country is surrounded by mountains and lakes, south & east are surrounded by central lowlands, forests, valleys and plains. The coast of Sweden is very dramatic with lakes, pines & birch trees. Traditionally the country is divided into three regions as Norrland in the North, Svealand in the center & Gotland in the South. A smaller percentage of the country lies within the Arctic circle, where there are 20 hours of darkness relieved by 4 hours of twilight. Another position in Greenland’s latitudes enjoys a good climate with mild and changeable weather. The national animal of Sweden is Eurasian elk which are plentiful in the region, they are also considered a symbol of majesty. The national tree is Orna’s Birch which is along the coast and the national flower is Linnaea Borealis pink flowers. The most popular dish of the Swedes is cinnamon roll and Snaps, a sweet alcoholic liquor that is the national drink. These fun folks’ national dance is Polska, accompanied by violin plays.

Sweden People & Culture

Swedes are generally humble in nature and listen to others actively. They also speak very soft and calm and rarely show anger in public. Swedish folks are known for their hospitality & kindness and failing to thank someone is recognized as negative behaviour. This society does not encourage competition and children are not raised to compete with one another to show their specialty. The ‘Work hard play hard’ concept is not the Swedish people’s cup of tea. Remember that if you are invited to a Swede’s home you need to take some gifts such as flowers or chocolates! Meanwhile, if you are given a gift by a Swede then it is a custom to open it upon receipt. Aren’t these people sweet?

Sweden Inventions & Protocols

Not to forget to mention how smart Swedes are – if you know they have really shined in inventing or modifying the things or technology that we often use. Some of the Swedish inventions and tech modifications are GPS, Skype, a three-point seat belt, a zipper, a flat-screen monitor, safety matches, a telephone handset, a Celsius temperature scale, a computer mouse and the most iconic consumer design – the coke bottle. Sweden is also considered as the safest country in the world for tourists and residents – however, there are minor crime cases such as pickpockets and it’s up to us to take basic precautions. There are strict laws and regulations governing healthcare, data protection, criminal laws and drug trafficking. Do not hesitate to visit Sweden – you are in safe hands!

Vacation &Recreation

The summer vacation in Sweden starts from mid-June to mid-August. In addition, they have two weeks of Christmas holidays from the end of December to the first week of January. On the eve of the holiday shops, and museums close a bit early.  Midsummer can be compared to Christmas. Just about everything is closed and a lot of Swedes go to their holiday home. Some of the recreational activities in Sweden include various sports, dance and theatre, playing music, playing video and computer games, and reading books. In terms of education.

Literacy Levels, Salary and Livelihood

Swedish people have a high literacy rate – it is evident by 50 universities & colleges in Sweden which are mostly state-run whilst independent institutions of higher education also prevail. Sweden does not have a minimum salary – however, they are known for their high living standards & organized society. The average salary in Sweden is 3400 USD per month. Accommodation is harder than landing a job as the country faces a strong residential deficit. High-skilled professionals can land a job easily whereas low skills & refugees strive to get jobs in the Swedish market

Economy & Job Opportunities

Sweden’s economy is focused on export markets in Germany & UK for Swedish goods. . The career perspective for the IT industry is great in Sweden regardless of your nationality. The citizens of EU/ EEA, Nordics or Switzerland do not have to pay for tuition for Bachelor’s / Master’s degrees in Swedish public universities. However, students who are apart from the mentioned regions need to pay – the cost is between 7,500 – 25,500 EUR/year depending on the study programme and university. Expensive courses are business & architecture. An international student can work part-time and can earn up to 1500 USD after tax deduction – however, 40 hours of study per week is compulsory for students. Full-time workers are entitled to 25 days of annual leave while part-time work leave is calculated depending on the organization you work – a 40-hour working week is imposed by the Swedish Parliament.

PR process

Fascinated by the above facts? Want to get a PR in Sweden? Well – you must be living in this region for five years – EU citizens will be granted PR by the end of 5 years even if they were unemployed; vice versa non-non-Citizens should prove that they were employed for five years to get the PR. Overall this culture-centred country which is known for its kindness and hospitality is a great place to live.

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