Are you ready to start on one of the biggest adventures of your entire life? If you are studying in Sweden or any other country, there are a number of things that have to be in order before you even step foot on the plane that will take you to Sweden. This checklist is not comprehensive by any means; it just includes all of the questions that you should be asking yourself before you embark on your journey.
- Have you applied and been accepted?
- Have you accepted your offer of acceptance, and did you fill out the appropriate paperwork?
- Do you have everything together in terms of finances? Have you paid tuition and fees or have a plan in place in order to do so?
- Have you applied for scholarships, loans, and grants if necessary?
- Are your classes in order?
- Do you know when your classes start, and did you give yourself sufficient time between your arrival and the first day of class?
Note: More information about your educational and academic endeavors can be found in our how to apply, education costs, and requirements for entry sections.
Travel and Arrival
- Do you have your plane and/or train tickets purchased for your trip?
- Do you have arrangements to get to the airport or train station when you leave?
- Do you have a way to get to your residence upon arriving in the country?
- Do you have everything in order for transportation while in the country (vehicle, public transportation, bicycle, etc).
- Have you taken a look at a map, or do you have one that you will have access to when you arrive, so that you don’t get lost as soon as you get there?
- Do you know where you are staying when you get to the country? Sometimes, your residence won’t be ready when you arrive. Do you have a game plan in case that is the case?
- Are all of your financial means straightened out? Housing deposits, security deposits, and other fees should be paid before you arrive or as soon as you get to Sweden.
- Do you have a way to get in? Are you supposed to pick up your keys from somewhere when you arrive, or were they sent to you?
- If you are staying with others in a homestay or in a flat, do they know when you are arriving? Do you have plans on how you are going to get to them?
Note: Our accommodations page will tell you everything that you need to know about finding somewhere to live while studying in Sweden. If you need more resources, the international studies and/or student union at your university can also help you.
Visas and Immigration
- Did you apply for your visa as soon as you were accepted to your university? Do you possess your visa? If you don’t, they won’t even let you into the airport or station.
- Do you have an updated passport, with one to three recent photographs?
- Are your visa and passport are in a place that you can easily access them? This can be your carryon, a purse, or some other type of bag that you take onto the plane or train with you.
Note: We have more information about passports and visas in our passports and visas section. You can also contact your student union, your admissions office, or the Migration Department of the Swedish government for more information.
Health Insurance and Medical Care
- Have you had an appointment with your family physician or general practitioner recently? They can get you the medication that you need until you can get it in Sweden, and they can make sure that you don’t have any ailments that will prevent you from traveling.
- If there are vaccinations or medications that you need to take before you arrive in Sweden, your university will let you know; make sure that you get that done promptly.
- Do you have your health insurance straightened out, or do you have the right safeguards in place so that you are covered while in Sweden?
- Do you have documentation of any ailments or chronic illnesses that you may have, and the treatment that you need for them? Do you have arrangements for that treatment upon your arrival to the country?
Note: Our health care page can give you all of the information and links that you need in regards to health care and insurance in Sweden. You can also find information at the Swedish government’s health care website.
When you are packing, there are a lot of things that you have to keep in mind. It may be hard for you to choose what you want to bring and what you don’t want to bring. Have you made a list yet?
While you are packing, also make sure that everything you are taking is in compliance with whatever transportation you are taking (train, plane, bus, etc). There are many rules in place that you need to be compliant with, mainly for safety reasons, so don’t disregard those things. The transportation authority that you are using can help you out, as can the student union at your university. The postal system can also help you out, because you may be able to send items via mail instead of paying excess baggage and/or luggage fees.
Also, make sure that you have two days worth of clothes and some money for toiletries packed in the bag(s) that are with you. That way, if your luggage is misplaced and you cannot get it for a couple of days, you will have clean clothes and you will be able to take care of yourself during that time. Don’t bother bringing toiletries with you, because it’s usually cheaper to buy them when you arrive as opposed to packing them.
- When you study abroad, whether it is for a year or for your entire course of study, you need to make sure that you say goodbye properly. Have you taken the time to do so?
- Do you have contact information for everyone that you want to keep in touch with while you are overseas? This has been made much simpler with the internet, so make sure that you utilize social media (Facebook, Twitter), email, and instant messaging services to keep in touch. If you don’t have any of these accounts yet, sign up for them before you leave. It’ll be easier to share your contact information before you leave, instead of after. There’s nothing wrong with using a home address to send letters, either.
- This is optional, but have you set up a blog for your travels? Many people don’t realize how easy it is to keep a blog and update people on what’s going on in your life, no matter what you are doing. Studying abroad is an adventure, and keeping a blog (which is, essentially, an online journal) can help you share your adventure with your loved ones and anyone else that may come across it.
- Have you started your packing early enough that you don’t feel rushed in the last week? Many people make the mistake of packing during their last week in their home country, which means that they don’t have time to hang out with their friends and family. So start two or even three weeks ahead of time, so that you can cherish every moment that you can have with them. Packing is going to take awhile, so make sure that you have a considerable amount of time to get everything done that needs to get done. Consider throwing a party or some other get-together so you can say goodbye to multiple people at the same time. It can also be a fun way to get your information out to other people.
This checklist is only meant to be a guide, and there are a number of other resources that you can use in order to make sure that you are ready for your trip to Sweden. The international studies office, admissions office, and/or student union can help you determine exactly what needs to be done before you start your studies in Sweden. All of those organizations help hundreds of international students, so they are founts of information that you should utilize.
Now that you’ve gone through your final checklist, do you feel like you’re ready to go? We hope that everything on this website has helped you in your journey to study abroad in Sweden. Sweden is a wonderful, and affordable, country to study in, and you will not regret your decision to study there. Enjoy your time there, and let others know what you enjoy about your experience. Thank you for checking out our website, and good luck as you embark on this new chapter in your life!