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5 Swedish words to learn before coming to Sweden

The most intriguing thing I had in my mind before coming to Sweden was if I could survive in Sweden without any background in Swedish. The answer is Yes. Most of the Swedish people can easily understand and speak English. But it is fun to learn a new language and converse with people who speak a different language than you usually do.

The first time I fell in love with Swedish was during an open mic poetry event. The Swedish vocabulary and poetic rhythm made me interested in the language.

Here I present to you 5 common Swedish words that I use almost everyday.

1. Hej

Image source: https://hejsweden.com/en/how-to-be-swedish-say-hej/

Hej (Read Hey) is Hi/Hello in Swedish. It is the most commonly used word in mails and greetings.

2. Hej då

Hej då is goodbye in Swedish. You can see this in the exit boards of Ikea.

Image source: https://hungrytravelbaby.wordpress.com/2014/01/15/ikea/

3. Tack så mycket

Tack så mycket means “Thank you so much”. Whenever someone helps you over with an assignment or assists you in finding the right bus back home, you can reply back by saying Tack så mycket or simply just Tack.

5 Ways to Say Thank You in Swedish
Image source: https://www.swedishpod101.com/blog/2017/11/27/how-to-say-thank-you-in-swedish/

4. Ursäkta

Ursäkta (Read: Ur-sek-ta) means “Excuse me”. Whenever you want someone’s attention towards you, while trying to interrupt the class to ask questions to the professor, we use the word Ursäkta.

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Image source: https://www.thenewbieguide.se/learn-5-basic-swedish-words/

5. Skål

Image source: https://www.spreadshirt.com/shop/design/viking+beer+sweden+scandinavia+skal+skol+mens+t-shirt-D5dc9b990205176484757b944?sellable=XypXngy8OMFGQDe5BlMR-210-7&view=D1

After finishing our exams, KTH has a tradition of TentaPub (Afterexam celebrations). Everyone raises their glass to the end of the semester and chants “Skål”. Skål is “Cheers” in Swedish. It is used whenever you want to raise a toast.

So here is a list of words which I have frequently used and felt belonged within my Swedish friends. You will eventually catch up with the pronunciations and vocabulary.

Vivek Anandbabu
Hej, I am from India currently pursuing Integrated Product Design at KTH. Moving to Stockholm has given me an opportunity to explore the new city like a local yet maintain the awe of a traveler. The vibrant KTH campus and its activities are itself a treat to a creative and aspiring mind. Join me on this journey of stories as we meet amazing people, exploring the innovation and sustainability pursuits happening throughout the KTH campus and the historical treasures of the city and the ways of employing jugaad to survive on a budget in one of the most expensive cities.