Let’s go Shopping for Sweden

Now that all the basic formalities are done for everyone coming to Stockholm this Autumn, and almost everyone has a place to live as well. Many of you would be in a big dilemma about what to bring to Stockholm and what to buy in Stockholm itself. I have compiled a list of all such things below from my experience, I hope this will help to clear the confusions and doubts.

Luggage

First things first, this is something that people don’t plan carefully and later end up regretting.

I’ll suggest distributing your luggage as following.

  1. The Main Bag: Get a big 4 wheeler bag, that can accommodate up to 30 kg of stuff. Pack all your heavy things in it.
    This can serve as your storage bag in the long term where you can keep all the clothes that you don’t need in your shelf at that point.
  2. The Rucksack: This is going to be the best investment for you in the long term, get a 40-50 liter rucksack.
    This can be your travel bag when you travel in Europe. Most of the budget airlines don’t allow free check in bags, so you need to take everything in the flight cabin, that’s when the rucksacks come into play, 40-50 liter rucksacks fit perfectly in the cabin, and they’re better than the small suitcases.
  3. The Backpack/Small Suitcase: Here you have some choice, most of the airlines allow around 7kg as your carry-on luggage (except British Airways which allows 23kg), so you could either stuff this 7kg along with your laptop bag or carry a lightweight laptop bag, and an additional carry on bag/suitcase. You can choose to take some weight off the Main Bag and add a third check-in bag.
    I would advise buying a good Laptop bag, which has some extra space for books, tiffin etc, so it may serve as your daily bag for the university.
  4. Laptop/Camera Bag: Laptop and camera bags are not counted in the carry on luggage and if you go by the rules, you can even carry a Guitar, Umbrella, Tuxedo. But we just have only two hands; moreover, in the end, it all comes down to the guy standing at the check-in counter, who might not allow you to take all the stuff (I know it isn’t fair but that’s what happened with one of my friends few days ago), So don’t take more than two bags to check in for a safe side.

So my advice would be (The way I did it):
Check in Luggage: Main Bag + Rucksack + Small Bag
Carry on Luggage: Backpack + Laptop/Camera Bag

Some more tips:

  • If you are staying with KTH Accommodation, you’ll get a bag with a duvet and a pillow. Be prepared to carry one extra bag on top of everything as you go from campus to your accommodation.
  • A common query that I get is if there is any problem with steel reinforcement rods in the rucksack. Well, there is no problem with those, I have traveled to a lot of countries with a rucksack like that, and didn’t face any problems so far.
  • Most of the airlines allow extra baggage allowance to students, so allowed baggage goes till 40kg. BUT, Never put more than 32kg in a single bag, it’s one of the airport rules that is not mentioned everywhere because the normal allowance is less than 30kg. One of my friends faced problems because of this.
  • Buy a lot of Ziplock bags to isolate stuff inside your bag. You never know what might leak and screw up everything else.
  • Having Packing Cubes helps big time to isolate things inside the bag, they help a lot while backpacking as well.
  • You can use Vacuum bags to squish in more clothes in little space.
  • If you’re not comfortable with stacking everything inside rucksacks and want something organized, look up for Panel Loading Backpacks, they open up like suitcases.
  • Don’t exceed the baggage allowance at any cost, it is not wise. If you’re coming from India, I can surely suggest you something, India Post has pretty decent prices, they charge around 400 per kg, while airlines will charge you 6 times more for extra baggage. If you really need something extra, just send it to your address (it’s on your accommodation contract) before you leave. It will reach in 8-10 days. Check out their price calculator here.
    It is even cheaper than this if you send by parcel instead of Speed post, it takes usually 10-15 days for the parcel, so not a big difference.

Electronics

In General, most of the electronic products are expensive in Sweden compared to the rest of the places across the globe. On top of that repairing is also expensive. I remember, I asked for a spare part for my MacBook and the service center quoted 1500 SEK for that, later I got the same part from eBay for 120 SEK and fixed it myself.

When buying electronic products, make sure that the brand you’re buying has international warranty and has service centres in Sweden. Otherwise even for a small problem, you’d be forced to spend a lot of money or buy a new one.

What Should You buy

Laptop: There are always mixed views on this, if you want to buy a MacBook, it is cheaper in India and rest of the countries as compared to Sweden even after the 10% student discount. However, in brands like HP and Lenovo, there are student discounts on select models and you might get some of the high-end models which are not available in some other parts of the world. But you’ll get a Swedish keyboard in most of the cases.

However, these discounts are still on the Swedish selling prices, which are usually higher, so my advice is to look carefully before investing.

Laptop Accessories

  • Grab a good pair of headphones, you’ll need it (Sony headphones are cheaper in Sweden than India).
  • Buy a good wireless mouse, you’ll need that as well.
  • A USB extension wire and an Aux audio cable might come in handy.
  • I won’t mind buying a decent USB/Bluetooth speaker.
  • An External hard drive always helps, You can get a decent discount on WD hard drives here in Sweden.
  • USB Flash Drives (Pendrives) come in handy, bring at least one.
  • Don’t buy Windows and Office licenses, KTH provides student licenses to all the students, also you’ll get a licence for a lot of software like Matlab etc.

Photography Stuff

If you’re into photography, don’t just bring your camera, buy a tripod as well. And if you want to try time-lapse etc, buy an Intervalometer.

Bring a cleaning kit and a good camera bag for your gear.

Internet

Even if you get an internet connection at your accommodation, you would just have a LAN socket in your room. So buy a good Wi-Fi modem (A Router to be more specific, not an ADSL modem), when I say good Wi-Fi modem, I really mean it, I’d prefer to get a dual band modem (The “why” part of this is explained in comments).

Your modem should be capable of exploiting these fast internet, this is the speed of connection at my apartment, I had to get a new modem to squeeze it out.

Your modem should be capable of exploiting internet speeds of this order, this is the speed at my apartment, I had to get a new modem to squeeze it out.

A lot of my Indian friends ask for recommendations about dual band modems, this is what I suggest: TP-Link AC750 or D-Link DIR-816. There could be many better options as well, but these are cheap and good.

Smartphone: At a place like Stockholm, a smartphone is kind of an obligatory thing, from helping in travelling to allowing us to make WhatsApp calls, smartphones are needed for everything. Again, I find the prices of smartphones and accessories more than back home. I recently got a new phone, which one of my friends brought from India, I got it for 3/4th of the price that I would have paid in Sweden. On the other hand, some of my friends bought Huawei phones in student offers at very low prices here in Sweden.

Smartphone Accessories:

  • Get a nice pair of earphones, again these are expensive in Stockholm.
  • Buy an efficient Power Bank, at least 5000 mAh. With Wi-Fi/4G and GPS on all the time, phones suck power at unimaginable rates.
    If you’re buying it in India, I have a couple of recommendations, Lenovo and Rockstone, I have owned both of these for nearly a year, these are quite handy.
  • If you wish you can bring spare screen guards and phone covers (I did that).

Converter and Extensions:

Sweden has a Residential Power supply of 230V at 50Hz, same as India. However the power sockets are different (C and F type, see the picture below).

I’d suggest buying a couple of Travel adapters ,(suggestions below), and a Multi-socket power extension to make your life easy.

Power Socket

More Stuff

  • Buy an Iron box, preferably a Steam Iron.
  • If you own a Tablet PC, bring it, it will help you when you read all those eBooks and papers.
  • Bring a small toolkit if you like fixing your stuff, I brought a small screwdriver kit, soldering kit, wire cutter and a plier, A Swiss army knife can be handy as well.

Stores to check Electronics Prices

  • Kjell & Company – A lot of stores, a bit expensive
  • Biltema – Huge stores, nominal prices
  • Jula – Huge stores, nominal prices
  • Webhallen – You can get nearly everything here
  • IKEA – Self explanatory
  • Öob – Cosmetics, Food, Electronics, Furniture
  • Teknikmagasinet – A lot of stores, a bit expensive
  • Prisjakt – Search prices on all stores
  • Pricerunner – Price comparison

Clothing

Apartment Essentials: Buy at least 2-3 bedsheets; if you’re buying cotton bedsheets, make sure that they are a bit oversized because they’ll shrink when you wash and dry them here. No need to bring Duvet and Pillow if you’re getting KTH Accommodation, you’ll get one when you arrive, you can buy the cover for these at IKEA.

General Clothing:

  • Bring at least one Tuxedo, there will be occasions when you need to wear it. A couple of traditional dresses as well. If not a Tuxedo, at least bring a blazer. I’ll suggest ladies to bring a couple of formal and party dresses as well, but even if you don’t HnM has a lot of stuff for you.
  • When bringing cotton clothes, remember they’re gonna shrink big time when you wash them here, I still don’t know how to avoid that.
  • Bring at least 7-10 pairs of undergarments, socks and hankies, mostly you’d be doing laundry once a week, so this makes it easy. (I’m also indirectly suggesting not to skip bathing).
  • Lowers and exercise clothing is available at nominal prices at Decathlon and Stadium, you can still bring a pair. If you’re a fitness freak then bring the gym gloves and back support.
  • Towell and hand towels could be bought at IKEA, but you can still bring.
  • Bringing a laundry basket/bag is recommended.
  • Bring Hangers, at least 4-6. The good ones are expensive. I found cheap yet good ones at a remote place for 1 SEK each, I consider myself pretty lucky for that.
  • Bring a Sewing kit, will help to fix those loose buttons.
  • It doesn’t rain as much as other parts of Europe, so a raincoat won’t be really necessary, an umbrella should suffice. Buy a windcheater here.

Winter Shopping: This is the section that’s been the source of maximum queries, so I’ll write this in detail. While some people may advise you to buy all your winter clothes only in Sweden, but my views are a bit different.

If you look at the temperature trends in Stockholm, four months December, January, February, and March are the months when you’ll get the taste of “Swedish Winter”, In January temperatures go as low as -20°. However, if you see except June, July, and August, the temperature is mostly below 15° and even in these months temperature can be cold (Yesterday it was 5° at night). But you won’t be wearing a heavy Eskimo jacket in May. If you come from a place with 30+ temperatures during August, you’ll feel a bit cold then also. Don’t be horrified by these temperatures, all the winter stays outdoors, and the apartments are perfectly insulated and centrally heated, I was still wearing a t-shirt indoors, while it was colder than -15° outside.

Average temperatures in Stockholm

Average temperatures in Stockholm (the blue portions highlight the Swedish Winter)

So here’s what I’d recommend:

  • Bring one or two jackets, a pullover, a windcheater that can help you survive till Mid-November, these will be your best friends after the snow melts away but it’s still mildly cold during April and May. Don’t bring much of sweaters, I personally don’t find them significant. Bringing mufflers, caps is highly recommended.
  • For December-March, you’ll need to buy winter jackets, maybe with down filling, you will have to buy it here in Stockholm only, You’ll also need to buy winter shoes.
  • Bring a couple of pairs of thermal wear (upper and lower both), it’s not easy to find those here, but you can’t trust just a pair of jeans to shield you from -20°.
  • Winter socks are better bought in Sweden, I bought mine from Clas Ohlson and they are awesome.
  • Buy gloves as well as shoes from some sports store like Decathlon or Stadium.
  • Try to explore the second-hand stores during August and September, there are chances of finding some good winter-wear at lower prices.
  • The cost of winter jackets is 700-1500 SEK. Winter Shoes cost 600-1200 SEK, Gloves 100-400 SEK, Socks 50-100 SEK.
  • Try to wait till Christmas for most of the shopping, most of the stores offer 40-70% discount after Christmas, and that’s one of the reasons everyone is out on streets during holidays.

Read this blog about surviving in Swedish winter that I wrote back in January.

Footwear: You’ll be walking a lot here, bring at least a pair of Sports Shoes, a pair of casual shoes. Winter shoes better be bought here. When you have to walk so much, sandals don’t make sense here, I don’t see anyone wearing them. Bring a pair of indoor slippers. You can bring a pair of formal shoes to match with your tuxedo.

Kitchen

Utensils

  • Usually, there are leftover utensils/cutlery in the apartments, and most of the previous tenants leave their kitchen stuff, so It’s wise not to bring a lot of stuff as it will just add to the weight, and you can eventually get everything at IKEA. Especially, if you live in corridor rooms, you’ll find enough utensils in the common kitchen that you don’t need to buy your own.
  • You’ll need normal cutlery, a couple of knives (it’s easy to sharpen them with each other ), it’s better to have microwave ready utensils. Having a Can opener is a must thing, you’ll be needing it a lot.
  • If you’re going to share your apartment with someone, it’s better to get in touch with them and decide, who brings what, that will save space and money for both of you.
  • Boxes, Tiffins, Mugs etc can be bought at IKEA or Öob.
  • I’d recommend buying a hand blender and a sandwich maker once you’re here, it will make the breakfast process really fast.

Indian Kitchen Stuff

  • Bring a pressure cooker, rice cooker (if you need), rolling pin and board (belan), also bring spare gaskets and safety valves for the pressure cooker. If you’re living in corridor rooms with shared kitchen, it would be good to tell the non-Indian neighbors that when the cooker makes that whistling sound, it’s totally fine, so that they don’t freak out.
  • Remember that there are no gas stoves(cooktops) here in Sweden, they’re mostly Electric Cooktops (hot-plates) or in some cases Electric Smooth tops (ceramic surface with radiative Heating). In both cases, you’ll need flat base pans/cookers, and in both cases, you’ll face quite a lot difficulties in making chapatis (personal experience). DO NOT BRING ROUND BOTTOM UTENSILS, which are quite popular in India.
  • Bring all the spices you’re going to need, and bring enough to last for at least a year, they’re very expensive here compared to India. Bring pickles as well. But seal them else they’ll spoil everything in your bag.
  • Don’t worry about pulses, rice, flour etc, you get everything here, and don’t take the pain of bringing all this from home, anyways you’ll consume it in a month and then buy from here, there are places where you can get it for cheap.
    Read the blog about Grocery Shopping in Stockholm once you’re here.
  • Don’t get the crazy idea of bringing Oil/Ghee, if one of these leaks, it will force you to throw everything else in that bag. And anyways, Olive oil is really cheap here as compared to India, (1/4th the price).
  • Pack everything in dual layers of zip-locks to make sure there is no leakage.
  • Instead of bringing all the pulses etc, I’ll highly recommend bringing Laddoo and Namkeen(Mixtures) and some more snacks which can make for good breakfast till they last. Because even if you bring a lot of pulses, I don’t think they’ll last very long, and eventually you’ll have to buy them here.

Stationery

This is the section you should worry least about, just bring one notebook and a couple of pen/pencils to last until November. In November, there would be Armada- The career fair. And all of those 150+ companies who’d be participating in Armada would be giving away free stuff, I would recommend participating in the team organizing Armada, it gives you a lot of exposure to the way things work in Sweden and you’ll get to make a lot of friends. You can get a year of stationery from there if you just visit every counter, Pens, Pencils, Notebooks, Notepads, Highlighters, Chocolates, Pendrives, Keychains, Towels, Sippers, Rulers, Sticky notes they give away everything. However, there are some things that you should bring:

  • Scientific Calculator, Make sure you bring one, it’s way too expensive here.
  • Stapler, and enough pins for that.
  • Binder clips, they help in a lot of things.
  • Whitener (correction pen) if you feel the need of it.
  • A Paper cutter, with spare blades for that, Scissors as well.
  • If you’re a fan of Gel pens, Uniballs, bring them, if you bring fountain pen, bring ink as well.
  • Bring some stickers for labeling stuff if you want to keep things organized.
  • Bring a Permanent marker, might come in handy.
  • An Exam pad (not for exams) helps when you’re too lazy to sit on the chair and studying on the bed.
  • Don’t worry about printing, you get 200 SEK worth of free prints every semester from KTH. That is 200 Coloured or 400 B/W Prints.

Health & Fitness

Medicines

  • Don’t forget to bring a Thermometer, if it’s digital, bring spare batteries.
  • Visit your family doctor and ask them to prescribe you some medicines that are not banned in this part of the world for some normal problems. Medicines for Cough, Cold, Mild Fever, Stomach Problems, Eye drops, Tooth pain. Bring the prescription as well. However, if the problem is mild then only take these, otherwise go see a doctor.
    Read this blog about accessing healthcare facilities as a student in Sweden.
  • I recommend having a proper dental checkup before you leave, the insurance cover of dental costs is pretty bleak.
  • Bring a first aid kit: Band-aids, Pain reliever Spray, Crepe Bandage, Hot water bottle, off the shelf anti-allergy and antiseptic creams, Dettol, Burnol, Vicks.

Gym

Although it’s quite cheap to get access to the Gym here. Although, the gym accessories are a bit expensive. If you live near the main campus, then KTH-Hallen, the KTH Sports club is the best place for you, they offer free access to all the fee paying new students for a year just pay the registration fee of 100 SEK. However, if you’re living away from the main campus (like me), Fitness 24×7 is a great gym, they charge 169 SEK monthly from students, and are open 24 hours, so go anytime, even I go at midnight.

So if you’re going to work out at the gym, bring all the essentials like the Gloves, Belt, Athletic supporters, training clothes.

Personal Care

All the personal care stuff, i.e. Shampoo, Conditioner, Body wash, toothpaste etc are priced normally, and as far as I have seen Willis Supermarket and Öob have the lowest prices. However, if you have some particular favorite toothpaste, toothbrush, bring enough for a year or two. If you’re coming from India, bring some shampoo, conditioner pouches, they come in handy while traveling.

Buy a good hair trimmer, you can buy hair dryer etc here for nearly same prices.

For Ladies

I asked a couple of friends to help me out with this section of the blog, so here’s a compilation for what you need to buy before you come to Sweden.

  • Epilators are recommended, waxing etc is really expensive here, bring tweezers as well.
  • All the nicer face lotions/face washes are more expensive here, and the selection is also much more limited; don’t count on being able to find your brand/product here. Also, there is not a great selection of deodorants and it mostly contains the wet roll-on type, not the stick.
  • If you’re really used to some particular product, bring full supply, don’t count on finding it here.
  • There are some good makeup shops, like FACES. Apotek for lotions/face washes, Lyko.se is good for buying cosmetics online.
  • H&M has cheap personal care products too, makeup, shampoo, hair color, etc.
  • You should bring the hairpins, hair bands etc.

Accessories

  • Bring one or two pairs of spare glasses, they’re extremely expensive here 500+ SEK (You can get Crizal lenses for this price in India).
  • Invest some money on buying a good pair of Polarised Sunglasses, the sun is pretty harsh here, During May – August you can’t go outside without sunglasses on a sunny day. I’d recommend getting Ray-Bans.
  • Although since the inception of Cell phones, watches have become a little insignificant, but if you have one, bring spare batteries for your wrist watch.

That’s all I’ve been able to think in past 48 hours, If you have any doubts just Drop a comment below and I’ll get back to you. I’d really prefer having comments over messages because then the information would be visible to everyone else. You can also suggest what you wish to read about in next blogs.

Check out the blog post about packing list here


Let me take you to Stockholm

42 thoughts on “Let’s go Shopping for Sweden

  1. Ram Prakash

    Though I have been travelling a lot ….& inspite of having a 55 Litres Dueters Ruck Sack ….Never thought to add in the checklist…
    Thanks for picture perfect checklist
    Thanks Tomar…

  2. Soumya Ranjan Nanda

    Hey, that was all i needed to know. Thanks for the heads up.

    Although you have covered each and everything there something bothering me about. I will be flying in aeroflot Nd it offers 2 pieces of checked in baggage not weighting more than 23 kgs.
    How do you recommend packing that many things?
    Any clarificarion is highly appeciated!
    Thank you!

  3. Abhineet Tomar Post author

    Hey Soumya,

    Aeroflot is a bit tricky case, you should have individual bags of 23KG each, i guess you might not be able to stuff 23 kg in a small rucksack, get a bigger one or get two suitcases (although I don’t recommend two, it’s difficult when you have to go though stairs).
    Don’t stuff more than 23 in individual bags and be ready to open them, there are high chances that they might ask you to open it up and show what’s inside In Moscow, that’s what people have told me.

  4. Soumya Ranjan Nanda

    Okay then!
    2 bags not more than 23kgs each and a carry in bag!
    Thats all then.
    Thank you!

  5. Abhineet Tomar Post author

    Exactly, you can have another bag with laptop/camera along with your carry-on baggage.
    Be careful about not exceeding the weight limits.

  6. Ashish Kumar Bhalla

    Hi Abhineet!
    First of all, thanks for the information. It is of great help.
    I was thinking of buying electronics (laptop and a phone) from amazon.com instead of using amazon.co.uk or buying from India as it electronics are cheaper in US compared to India and Sweden. Any suggestions for that?

  7. SWAPNIL JAY

    As we know Software Compatability of Macbook has some limitations.
    I was thinking to purchase a Mac from there , but as mentioned the price factor.

    What brands on the Windows will suffice the Softwares that we will be using in Labs and designing purposes,
    Still the International Warranty is limited when you buy it from India.
    Could you suggest something

  8. Abhineet Tomar Post author

    Hi Ashish,

    As far as I know, no matter how cheap the products look on the amazon.com/amazon.co.uk, when you order them to India, Customs would be levied on your order so it will make it as expensive as in India (sometimes even more than that), so your best bet of getting the products at US prices is if someone who is coming from there brings it for you.

    Last year there were a lot of student discounts on Apple products between June-September in India (Around 13%), do enquire if there any such discounts this year. Otherwise you don’t have much choice.

  9. Abhineet Tomar Post author

    Hi Swapnil,

    The kind of software you need really depends on the courses you’ve taken. In our department most of the tools we had to use were on the Linux server of KTH, so either we were using Linux-based virtual machines, or working on servers through SSH or directly working in the Labs, Mostly if you don’t need to use any software with high graphic requirements, it all works fine on the laptops with moderate configuration.

    I have been using Macbook for past 7 years, and I don’t find anything incompatible with it. If you have to use some software that’s available solely for Windows you always have options of using Windows on Bootcamp or Parallels Desktop. In case you find any difficulty with MacBook, feel free to get in touch with me.

  10. Ashish Kumar Bhalla

    Thanks Abhineet!
    But I was talking about delivering the products to Sweden from amazon.com and not to India.

  11. Ashish Kumar Bhalla

    And what about buying Swedish manufactured products there, for example Doro smartphones?

  12. Abhineet Tomar Post author

    Hi Ashish,

    In that case, you’ll have to pay customs in Sweden, the best way to check the amount you’ll pay after customs is to add it to your cart on Amazon and reach the payment page after entering the address, Amazon adds the taxes to your checkout amount. So you can easily check the taxes you’re going to pay.

    So you can compare the amount’s you pay while ordering to India and to Sweden and then compare it with the prices you pay when buying locally from India or in Sweden.

  13. Dikshant Chauhan

    Hi, the blog is pretty helpful. I liked how you compiled everything, esp. the “belan” part

  14. Gokul Sreram

    Great work in the blogs! Really makes many lives easier.

    Coming from India could you suggest, how often u cook, or get a chance to do so. Since the essence of travelling to a new place is complete only by tasting the local food. And if possible can you mention some (essential) dishes that we can learn which comes in handy.

  15. Abhineet Tomar Post author

    Hi Gokul,

    I kind of enjoy cooking, so I usually cook twice a day. For a vegetarian like me it’s not much of a choice to eat outside, so even when I’m travelling outside Sweden I cook my own food. Cooking your own food is economic as well. For people on a student budget, restaurants are expensive, even the locals bring their lunch boxes and you’ll see a lot of people around microwaves at lunch time.

    Regarding the recipes, my advice, Learn everything you can, everything you like, you can’t be repeating those 4-5 dishes for two years, so just learn whatever you can, but for a quick start, learn the basic dishes that you can cook faster, some quick breakfasts, something that you can cook with rice (biryani etc), this works fast. Then I’d highly recommend learning at least one dessert; once in a while, you get an intense craving for that. All the best for learning cooking.

    At the end of the day, you learn whatever you don’t know from Internet.

  16. Ganesh

    Bro.. In case of shared apartment, will refrigerator, induction stove be available in the kitchen ?

  17. Abhineet Tomar Post author

    Hi Ganesh,

    By “Shared apartment” if you mean Shared Studio Apartment, then yes, there is A refrigerator, a freezer, an oven and hotplate or radiative cooktop stoves (No Induction cookers) in the apartment that would be shared by you and your flatmate.

  18. Limara

    Hi!
    I’ve got an accommodation from KTH and it’s a studio apartment. is there any freezer available in such rooms?

  19. Balaji

    Hello bro!

    Which is advisable? Getting a foreign travel card or using International debit card from Indian banks?

  20. Abhineet Tomar Post author

    Hi Balaji,

    I’ll suggest having a travel card, so that you can load more currency at once when INR is strong against SEK, otherwise whenever you make a transaction you pay according to that day’s rate. And at many occasions, especially on online transactions, you might be charged more or Indian debit card might not work.

  21. Abhineet Tomar Post author

    Regarding the “why dual band modem” part. There are two reasons.

    1. Speed: The wifi 2.4 Ghz band normally works on B/G/N standards, these have maximum practical speeds of up to nearly 100 mbps (B – 11 mbps, G – 54 mbps, N – 130 mbps with single antenna), the 5 Ghz band works with AC standard, which is also called Gigabit standard, so you can squeeze out a speed of up to 1 Gbps. Serves the purpose.
    In simple words, the maximum speed that you can get on a Wi-Fi is defined by the band.

    2. Interference: Apart from bands, there is one more thing in Wi-Fi, Channels, there are around 11 channels for 2.4ghz band, however far more for 5 GHz. Since there would be a lot of people using Wi-Fi in the same area as yours, so you’ll have to share the bandwidth with them. On 5GHz bands, there is less interference so you can again get more speed.
    In simple words, channels are like lanes of a road, no matter how fast your car can go, if more people share the road, your speed is limited because of them.

  22. Balaji

    Thank you Abhineet! Many banks in India doesn’t have the facility to credit the INR as SEK. Should I search for banks which will credit the money as SEK or shall I credit as EURO which will be converted into SEK while I purchase in Sweden?

  23. Abhineet Tomar Post author

    Hi Balaji,

    Don’t buy Euro, no sense of paying double conversion fee, I personally know HDFC and ICICI bank give Multicurrency cards with options of loading SEK on them. Go and check them out, Make sure that you get a PIN protected card, else you’ll have a lot of difficulty in doing transactions.

    You’ll be required to show your RP in order to get a Multicurrency card as far as I know.

  24. Shivanand Ambalavanan

    Hej Abhineet!

    Firstly, thank you so much for your excellent blogs!
    Your helping us out a great deal!
    I have a few queries on what you have mentioned, which I hope you can clarify when you find time.

    a) Do we need a modem or a router? I have got accommodation in Lappis, single corridor room. I saw on the website that it has a LAN connection. In that case, wouldn’t a router suffice?
    b) The F type socket in Europe is similar to Indian sockets right? Just that they don’t have the earth pin, if I am not wrong. So any 2 pin cable appliance should work smoothly Correct me if I am wrong.
    c) Are the mobile networks compatible with most handsets? Everyone cannot afford an iphone so do brands like Motorola, Xiomi etc. work there?

    That’s it for now!

    Thanks!

    Cheers!

  25. Abhineet Tomar Post author

    Hi Shivanand,

    1. You need a Router (the one that gets a LAN cable as Input and then makes a Wi-Fi AP from it. Don’t confuse it with an ADSL modem. You will have a LAN socket in your room.

    2. F-Type might seem similar, I posted an Image of it above. As you see that the plug has to fit inside the socket, so some of the wide two pins plugs won’t go in, most of the mobile chargers are designed for this, and many laptop chargers too. I’ll still recommend carrying a travel adapter, also helps when you visit other countries in south of Europe who don’t have same power sockets.

    3. Yes, mobile networks are compatible, I have a Oneplus and a Motorola handset, both work fine, Mi also works fine. Make sure that your phone supports 4G(LTE) as most of the providers have 4G internet.

  26. Jaisal Ashraf

    Hi Abhineet,

    Just one doubt regarding luggage. Mine is Emirates flight with max 30kg check luggage allowed. Is it required to have whole 30kg as single luggage/ can v keep it in 2 separate bags?. Is that allowed in Emirates?

    Thanks,
    Jaisal Ashraf

  27. Abhineet Tomar Post author

    Hi Jaisal,

    There’s no problem with multiple bags, I’d in fact recommend multiple bags, one big bag of 30kg might be difficult to carry around. I’ll say, Bring two bags for check-in luggage + one for carry-on luggage, that’s convenient, because if you’re getting accommodation from KTH, you’ll get another bag (with duvet), when you arrive here.

  28. Chaitanya

    Hi Abhineet!
    I wanted to ask you a few extra things –
    1. Is induction stove available in the kitchen or can we buy the same?
    2. Are cut vegetables available readily in the market?
    3. Are basic condiments like haldi, mirchi and salt available to buy?
    4. Can we cheap lightweight quilts there or do we have to buy them from India?
    5. Can we use a formal suit instead of a tuxedo?

    Thanks for all your help.

  29. Abhineet Tomar Post author

    Hi Chaitanya, Here are your answers:

    1. Is induction stove available in the kitchen or can we buy the same?
    It’s not induction stove, it’s hotplate type electric stove. And you don’t need to buy, it is there in all apartments.

    2. Are cut vegetables available readily in the market?
    Frozen cut vegetables like carrot, cauliflower, broccoli, beans, capsicum etc are available and are actually cheaper than fresh vegetables.

    3. Are basic condiments like haldi, mirchi and salt available to buy?
    Yeah, it’s all available. But haldi, mirchi etc (the indian spices) are expensive, and we don’t use them in big quantities either. So it would be a good idea to bring a kilo of each to last enough for a year. Salt is available everywhere.

    4. Can we cheap lightweight quilts there or do we have to buy them from India?
    Don’t bring these from India, if you stay with KTH accommodation they will give you one for free. Else IKEA has cheap good options.

    5. Can we use a formal suit instead of a tuxedo?
    Of course.

  30. Cleo

    Hi Abhineet,

    Thanks for all your helpful advice thus far. I was just wondering if you had home insurance/would recommend home insurance for an exchange student staying in accommodation provided by KTH and if so, what company would be best? I’m just a little worried what the cost would be if something happens if I didn’t have it and also how someone who cannot get a personnumber would be able to get one.

    Thanks in advance!

  31. Abhineet Tomar Post author

    Hi Cleo,

    I don’t have any extra insurance, and as far as I know the housing in Sweden is quite safe if you are living in one of the KTH allotted apartments. I have come to know of only one case in Lappis where someone had a break-in. But I don’t have any knowledge about house insurance companies. I’ll look up about it and get back to you.

  32. Jyothi Rao

    Hello Abhineet,
    went through your blog.Its very informative.
    My daughter is coming to Sweden this August,to the university of Skovde as an exchange student.She ‘ll be there for an year.
    As a mother I was quite apprehensive about a lot of stuff
    But you covered most of the doubts a first timer to Sweden would have.
    Good job!!.
    Just wanted to know about sim cards.
    1.will they be able to use whats app from their current/Indian data providers(like idea) temporarily?
    2.how do they get new/local sim cards? does it involve a lot of documentation etc?
    Thank u once again for your input.

    Mrs Jyothi Rao

  33. Abhineet Tomar Post author

    Hello Mrs Jyothi Rao,

    Great that you liked the blogs, here are answers to your questions.

    1. Will they be able to use whats app from their current/Indian data providers(like idea) temporarily?
    Whatsapp is something that doesn’t bother which data provider you use, so as soon as your daughter connects to any Wi-Fi or installs a SIM with data, it will work. The only problem would be, if she uninstalls Whatsapp and has to configure it again, then it will send a confirmation text on the phone. And I’m pretty sure that with Idea, you don’t get international roaming for free. So If you move the same number to Airtel, because with Airtel you at least have the ability to get SMS while being abroad without any extra charge.

    2. How do they get new/local sim cards? does it involve a lot of documentation etc?
    Getting SIM cards is as easy as buying Chocolates, there is no paperwork and all the SIM cards are preactivated. All you need to do is to go to the nearest Pressbyrån or 7Eleven store and get a SIM card. Some providers like Hallon have cheap offers for students but are postpaid.

  34. Prathamesh

    Hey,

    Nice Blog. Appreciate it.
    Which Airlines did you take from India to Sweden?
    ———————————————————
    So my advice would be (The way I did it):
    Check in Luggage: Main Bag + Rucksack + Small Bag
    Carry on Luggage: Backpack + Laptop/Camera Bag
    ——————————————————————–
    I was wondering which Airline allowed you to take all these? I am taking British Airways and they have mentioned only one check in Luggage not more than 23Kgs

  35. Abhineet Tomar Post author

    Hi Prathamesh,

    I flew with Emirates, but this year there is some problem with Emirates allowing the extra allowance for students. British Airways used to allow one extra 23kg bag for free to students back then, but now I see that the offer is limited to students flying to UK.

    But British Airways allows 23kg of cabin baggage, that increases your total allowance to 46kg. Moreover, you can always send a parcel by India post to your address in Sweden which will be cheap and convenient.

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