7 things to do in your first 7 days in Sweden


Written by Nguyen

27 Aug 2020

You have just arrived in Sweden. You are excited but also tired after 24-hour flights across 2 continents! So much information and you don’t know what and where to begin with?!

I hope this list can help you get through your first 7 days in Sweden.

1. Sleep

Believe me nothing is better than a sleep after a long and exhausted flight. After everything you have been through to land in Sweden, you deserve a sleep.

Photo: Giphy

I remember the sleep on my first day in Sweden was one of the best sleeps I ever have had. Sleeping would help you regain energy for a full week of activities and exploration in Sweden.

2. Get a sim card for your mobile phone

Prepaid sim cards are available at convenience stores such as Pressbyrån or 7Eleven. You can also get them for free from your universities on Arrival Days. After getting the sim card, you should be able to activate it immediately. You can also easily top up your sim card with different types of subscriptions by buying top-up cards at convenience stores.

A woman paying to use a Voi electric scooter with a mobile app.
Photo: Lieselotte van der Meijs/imagebank.sweden.se

In my case, I received my sim card from Lund University on Arrival Day. It is included in the Welcome package. Mine is from Telenor, ↗️ and it already had 1GB for internet surfing.

Besides Telenor, there are also other mobile sim cards providers such as Telia, ↗️ Comviq ↗️ or Hallon ↗️for your choice.

3. Join University Arrival day

University Arrival day and Orientation week may be varied among Swedish universities. On this day, there would be a range of different activities organised by the universities such as registration, campus tour, library tour and introduction, or city tour, etc.

Students sitting on wooden steps outside.
Photo: Simon Paulin/imagebank.sweden.se

This is a perfect opportunity to get to know your university’s history and campus, make new friends through mentor groups and explore a variety of activities and organisations that your university offers. Participating in these activities either online or in-person would also help you quickly adapt to the new environment. One of my best experience when first arriving in Lund is playing Kubb (a traditional Swedish game) with my mentor group.

A group of international students playing the Swedish lawn game 'Kubb' in a partk.
Photo: Ulf Lundin/imagebank.sweden.se

Note: Remember to keep social distancing and avoid more than 50-people gatherings when participating in these activities 🙂

4. Register for Personnummer

As a 2-year student, you will be able to register for Personal number or Personnummer with the Tax Agency (Skatteverket). ↗️ It is recommended to register as soon as possible since the queue may be long.

Photo: Skatteverket/ skatteverket.se (screenshot)

You can either fill the registration form online or by visiting the Tax Agency. Later when you’ve already got your Personnumber, you can book visit to the Tax Agency to register for Swedish ID kort (card).

Follow Katharina’s blog on guideline to fill in Personnumber registration form online.

5. Familiarise yourself with public transportation

In the first week of your arrival, you may not have your own bike to ride around your city yet. Thus, why not buying a 24-hour bus ticket for students and explore your city by bus? I’m sure you would have one of greatest experience in your first days in Sweden. Students get a lot of offers for public transportation, and buying group tickets may also get you some discount.

A green and yellow tram.
Photo: Fredrik Schlyter/imagebank.sweden.se

In Lund and Skane region, Skanetrafiken ↗️ app is what you would need to buy tickets and travel by public transportation including local buses, regional buses and trains. In Stockholm, it’s SL, ↗️ while in Uppsala, it’s UL. ↗️ Gothenburg also has its own traffic app which is Vasttrafik. ↗️

6. Familiarise with supermarkets, local shops and… second-hand shops (a must!)

And of course, grocery and furniture shopping cannot be missed in this list. Usually student accommodations provided universities are located near supermarkets and grocery shops. Why not taking a walk around your neighbourhood and exploring what your locals offer?! Some of common supermarket chains in Sweden include ICA, Willys, Lidl, Coop or Netto.

And as you are in Sweden, the nation of second-hand shopping, it’s a must to at least visit a second-hand shop in your first week here. You may find better deal for clothes, plates, bowls, utensils or also furniture such as chair, couch or table.

A woman browsing clothes in a vintage shop.
Photo: Simon Paulin/imagebank.sweden.se

Follow Lusanda’s blog for a guide to shop in second-hand shops.

7. Get a Fika with your new friends

It’s already your Day 7 in Sweden, from a fresh newcomer with nervous look, now you feel comfortable walking around your Swedish city. You may make a few new friends who also just come to Sweden like you. You share your first trips to a second-hand shop, first grocery shopping to a local ICA or visit to university library together. So what’s better than a fika to conclude your first week in Sweden?

A woman sitting in a cafe drinking coffee and eating a cinnamon bun.
Photo: Tina Stafrén/imagebank.sweden.se

A cup of cafe latte, a piece of Kanelbullar and some chit chat with new friends in a cosy coffee shop on a chilling autumn day, it’s one of the most Swedish moments ever.

Remember “Fika is much more than having a coffee”↗️ 🙂

What’s your plan or what else have you done in your first 7 days in Sweden? Please share with us! 😉

All the best to your new adventures in Sweden!


Written by Nguyen

27 Aug 2020