Students hanging out on a street in Stockholm. Photo: Simon Paulin/imagebank.sweden.se

Checklist before coming to Sweden

Accepted to study in Sweden? Congratulations! Here's what to do next.

The wait is finally over! Now that you’ve officially been offered a place at a Swedish university, it’s time to get excited: you’ll be coming to Sweden in just a few months. Here’s a checklist with the top 8 things you should be doing to prepare.

1. Pay your first tuition fee instalment

To be able to apply for your residence permit, you’ll need to have paid your first tuition fee instalment. (This only applies to students who are required to pay fees – see Am I required to pay? on UniversityAdmissions.se for details). Your university will provide you with information on how to pay.

2. Apply for a visa and residence permit

If you’re from a country outside of the European Union, it’s time to start applying for your residence permit for studies. See Residence permits and visas for the basics, then head to the Swedish Migration Agency’s website to apply.

3. Find housing

Depending on where in Sweden you’ll be living, you’ll have different types of housing to choose between – see Accommodation for an overview. After you’ve read through the basics, your first point of contact should be your university‘s housing office. They’ll give you more information on the housing situation in your city and how you can start your search.

In some places (especially in larger cities like Stockholm, Gothenburg and Malmö, or in university towns like Uppsala and Lund) finding housing can be a challenge, so it’s a good idea to start your search as early as you can.

4. Arrange the practicalities

Make sure you arrange health insurance before you leave home – see Health insurance and medical care to find out what applies to students from your country. It’s also a good idea to look over your financial situation and consider whether you want to look for a part-time job during your studies. And don’t forget to read through our practical advice, so you’re prepared for day-to-day life in Sweden.

5. Connect with your classmates

Getting in touch with other students on your programme is a great way to make friends before you arrive on campus. Your future classmates may also be able to help answer some of your questions. Find your new classmates by checking for posts on your university’s Facebook page, or searching for a Facebook group for your programme. You can also check social media or online forums that are popular in your country to connect with other students heading to Sweden. If you don’t find a pre-existing group, why not start one yourself?

6. Read up on Sweden and your new city

There’s lots to learn about Swedish culture and things to look forward to in your free time. Here are ways to get started:

Don’t forget to follow your university on social media to get in the loop on what’s happening on campus! Most Swedish universities have Facebook, Twitter and YouTube pages; many are also active on Instagram, Weibo and others.

7. Pack wisely

Whether you’re someone who starts packing weeks in advance or procrastinates until the very last moment, it’s a good idea to pack wisely. You’ll be living in Sweden for at least a year, so you’ll want to take the essentials with you. But avoid packing too much: anything you didn’t bring, you will almost definitely be able to find in stores here in Sweden – except maybe pictures of your grandma or your favourite sweets from home.

8. Come to Sweden!

In late August, it’s time to get on a plane, train or boat to Sweden. Your university will provide you with details on orientation for new international students. Make sure to arrive in time to get settled (and maybe visit a certain Swedish blue-and-yellow furniture store for basic home furnishings and a plate of meatballs) before orientation starts.

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