Fact file: Sweden

Did you know?
There are 100,000 lakes in Sweden.
Language
Swedish; Sami dialects in the northern Sami regions; widespread English.
Visas
None required for UK citizens
Getting there
Several daily flights to the capital Stockholm, Malmo and Gothenburg from Heathrow, Gatwick, Manchester and Edinburgh. By boat from Newcastle.
Flying time from London
Two and a half hours
Getting around
Sweden is big, and has around 10 domestic airlines; tickets are expensive but there are substantial discounts available. Long-distance buses go almost everywhere and each town has a bus network. There is an extensive railway system and trains are fast, give good service, and are expensive. Driving is feasible as the roads are excellent. Drive on the right.
Currency
Swedish Krona (SKr)
Costs
Pint of beer £2.50-£4, litre of petrol 75p, three-course meal with 1/2 bottle of wine £20-£30, roll of camera film £3, four-mile taxi ride about £7. All prices vary.
Weather
Summer can be warm and sunny - especially June and July, while August is warm but sometimes rainy. July averages are 17C (63F) in Malmo and 11C (52F) in the northern mountains. It's very cold and dark in winter, averaging -5-2C (-23-35F). Annual rainfall is highest around Gothenburg at more than 700mm. Snow in Lapland stays on the ground for 150-200 days a year.
Time difference
One hour ahead of GMT
International dialling code from the UK
00 46
Voltage
220 V AC, 50 Hz
Opening hours
Banks usually open 9.30am-3pm, or 5/6pm in big cities. Shops open 9.30am-6pm weekdays and till 2 or 3pm on Saturday. Lunch begins at 11am and is over by 2pm in restaurants. Stockholm has many 24-hour shops.
Health - Before you go
You don't need any vaccinations. To obtain free healthcare get an EHIC form before travelling (from UK post offices).
Health - When you are there
If you need medical care and you have an EHIC form, see doctors affiliated with the public insurance scheme. For information and refunds go to the local Social Insurance Offices - the Lokala Forsakringskassan.
Warnings
There are many remote parts where it is easy to get lost and, despite the efforts of rescue services, get hypothermia and die. Take a guide, or follow marked trails when doing countryside activities, skating, skiing, etc. When driving in the north, watch out for reindeer and elk on the roads. Otherwise Sweden is one of the safest countries, with the usual city precautions. You may want to take your alcohol with you as it costs a packet, and the Swedes have draconian drinking laws.
Emergency
General emergency dial 112. British Embassy, Skarpogatan 6-8, Stockholm, Tel. 08 671 9000.
Customs
Swedes do enjoy boisterous drinking sessions but these rarely end in socially disturbing behaviour, which is considered not funny and unacceptable.
Pets
Sweden is part of the Pet Travel Scheme. Your pet needs the right documentation, which takes some time to set up. Ask your vet for further details.
Tipping
A tip is not expected where there is service charge on the bill, but leaving some change is quite common. In taxis round up the tariff.
Tourist office
The Swedish Travel and Tourism Council, 5 Upper Montague Street, London, W1H 2AG. Tel. 00800 3080 3080.


Telephone

+44 (0) 203 696 2870

Mon – Fri 8:30am – 5:30pm

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