Do’s And Don’ts Of Visiting Sweden

By Dhruvalakshmi Paithankar on Dec 20, 2018
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When people travel to Sweden, they have a lot of questions. ‘Do they speak English in Sweden?’ is surprisingly the most popular one. (Yes, they do speak English!) But, there are also several other things to know before visiting Sweden. From the coffee traditions to weed questions, here is a blog that will answer it all. Want to know what to do and what not do in Sweden before you start planning your trip? Read these do’s and don’ts right away - 

1. Forget your beloved weed

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Sweden and weed do not go hand in hand. You cannot buy, sell, or even carry weed when you are here. Even medical-usage is limited and permittable only in rare cases. So, if you are not planning to stay in a Swedish prison for a minimum of 6 months, say goodbye to that joint. 

2. Keep your voice low

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You may feel eccentric about work or excited about some personal news, but no one in Sweden gives a damn. No need for that animated body language or happily raised voices. ‘Keep calm and carry on’ is the perfect mantra when you are in Sweden. 

3. Do not litter, ever! 

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This one is a no-brainer. You do not go to the greenest country and make it dirty (you should not do that no matter where you go). Sweden recycles, and it recycles a lot! People even avoid drinking bottled water as plastic is used in them. Drink tap water and save the environment! 

4. There is no such thing as decaf

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Wondering what to know when traveling to Sweden? Here is the most important one - For Swedish people, a decaf is not a coffee. They love their fika (a coffee break) relaxing and their coffee hot and strong. So, if you are decaf-lover and want to go to Sweden, learn to drink coffee the Swedish style from now on. 

5. Do not compare Sweden with other Scandinavian countries 

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Sweden shares a geographical identity with other counties but that’s it! They do not share cultural similarities and are not happy when tourists suggest this. If you think something is similar to Denmark or Norway traditions, keep that to yourself. 

6. There is no such thing as ‘awkward silence’

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Silence is great, silence is welcomed when you are in Sweden. You will never find anyone complaining about it. You may not be familiar with this, but do not worry if you think people in Sweden are giving you a silent treatment. They are just being who they are. 

7. Do not talk about politics 

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You may get excited when someone mentions ‘Donald Trump’ but that’s not the case in Sweden. They will not initiate any political conversation and if you do so, the only thing you will get in return is silence. And trust me, that silence will definitely be awkward. 

8. No need to bring religion up in any conversation  

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Sweden is not a religious country and they do not stress over different religious practices. Do what you want to, follow a religion you are fond of, just don’t share those details unless you are asked about. 

9. You have to love Sweden’s hockey team 

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It does not matter if you are a soccer fan and do not know a thing about hockey. When you are in Sweden, the only thing you have to love and support is their hockey team. While watching a game, say ‘yay’ when everyone is happy and stay silent when everyone is sulky, and you will be safe. 

10. Do not pay with cash everywhere

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No need to run to ATM every time you are going shopping or to a bar. In fact, most of the places will welcome you with ‘cash not accepted’ board. Carry a credit/debit card and you will be welcomed with a smile. 

Keep these points in mind and plan a trip to Sweden without worrying about anything!

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