Hey everyone! As a student living in Stockholm with a tight budget, I think it’s important I share my monthly expenditures with you. As Lorenzo mentioned in his last post, we all tried to “wrap our heads” around the living costs in Stockholm before deciding to study here!
Since I live in a corridor apartment in Lappis, the monthly rent is 3911 KR (approximately 350€). The area is 30min away (by metro) from the city center and 20min from KTH. All the utility bills are included, such as electricity, water, and heating, so there is nothing to worry about! SSSB takes care of the surroundings, the buildings, etc., and helps you out in case you are in trouble! There is also a yearly fee of 360KR (32€) to stay in the queue for accommodation at SSSB and collect days! But this includes two free tickets to the biggest parties at KTH per year!
In winter, I use public transportation, which adds up to 650KR (around 60€) per month, around 4 months per year. At other times of the year, I bike everywhere and enjoy add-free commuting! Then, phone services cost 100 KR (around 9€) per month. To sum up, I spend 420€ per month in winter and in summer 360€!
Thankfully, in Stockholm, there is a culture among students to cook their own meal for lunch and warm it up! Almost every building at KTH has microwaves. The architecture campus is designed not only as a school but also as an office, so we have kitchens on every floor! It really makes you enjoy your own cooked lunch with your friends and saves you lots of money! We have many coffee machines in our kitchen, and we calculated that when we make coffee here and do not buy it at a “7-Eleven” supermarket, we save around 300 KR per month (drinking americano). If you drink a latte, you will save up more!
I shop at cheaper supermarkets that save you a lot of money, and you really feel the difference. Okay, I buy nice bread at a more expensive supermarket because of the taste…but that is pretty much it! So on food, I spend 2000-2500KR (180-230€ max) per month!
I probably eat less than Lorenzo, but I spend more on skin and hair care products…! I usually order my beauty products, medicine, and vitamins from pharmacies online because they do free delivery! Prices for shampoos and skin care products really vary depending on how much you would like to spend. Normal shampoo prices go from 50 KR (around 5€) and up! Personally, I spend about for one shampoo and one conditioner around 300 KR (less than 30€) and that lasts more than a month.
Second-hand shopping is super trendy here. I feel that second-hand shops and “fast fashion” stores have more or less equal prices now. If you buy discounted clothes, sometimes I think new clothes cost less. But you could find a pair of jeans at the second-hand shop for 50KR (less than 5€); you need to know where to look! I bought a pair of winter shoes in a typical shoe store and paid around 800 KR (around 72€), which is a great price for Stockholm. If you are really on a tight budget, there are cheaper clothes stores further away from the city center or even outside the city. Right now, I buy clothes only when necessary, so I spend around 300-500KR (25-50€) per month.
I play badminton in a club close to Lappis. There is a huge sports facility, and you get great student prices! I pay for membership around 30€ per month. It includes four times a month (2h one badminton session with a coach). Indeed, this is a brilliant deal for students. There are more options to choose from: a gym, a tennis court, table tennis, floor hockey, and so on!
Occasionally, I go to a nice restaurant or bar with my friends. Some apps give 30, sometimes even 50 percent discounts! This is a great way to have a cozy dinner with your friends and not spend a fortune…You just book a table through the app, wait for the approval, and you are good to go! If a burger costs 140KR, with the discount, you pay 98KR.
All in all
To live in Stockholm as a student is definitely not as expensive as I imagined! I used to spend much more when I used to live in London (in comparison the monthly card for transportation cost more than 100€ zones 1-2). I remember paying almost 600€ for rent in a much smaller place in London…So all in all, I spend more or less 8000KR per month here in Stockholm, which is a bit more than 700€!
Hi guys, it is Raygo here again today! last week, I had been to the Stockholm Furniture Fair (SFF) 2023. This yearly event is the most significant platform where different Scandinavian furniture and lighting companies gather and showcase their designs. This year there were over 400 exhibitors involved in the fair organized at Stockholmsmässan, one of the largest exhibition facilities in the city.
Although the event ran for only one week and ended on 11 February, I will share my favorite discoveries there and introduce some Scandinavia design features with you all!
The fair is divided into three main sections, with the exhibitors’ booths located in the three halls at the venue. Organized in parallel with the exhibition, there are several talks every day during the week inviting the designers, architects, and professionals to share their thoughts on furniture and Scandinavian designs.
One of the exhibition zones that I enjoyed the most was the chair section. Different chairs were displayed, from stools and armchairs to sofas and many others. And each of them has been thoughtfully designed considering ergonomics, materials, construction techniques, etc. It reminds me of one of the core values of Scandinavia design: being functional while not missing out on the details and quality.
As an architecture student, I also got excited when entering a booth and seeing architectural models of different scales lining up in the room. Those are the works done by architecture, urban planning, and design students. And some of them are by our seniors and graduates from the KTH School of Architecture! The booth’s theme is sustainable design and its application in building construction, where there are also prototype models of tiles made out of recycled materials such as plastic bottles. It highlights Swedish companies and designers’ innovative ideas and efforts, attempting to promote sustainability by applying the concept to different industries and productions.
Another fascinating brand I have found out about invents an interior design product with moss, a plant that grows naturally in the wild. According to the brand representative I have talked to, this organic material performs exceptionally well in sound absorption. It is flexible to form different shapes and becomes interior decorations or installations appealing in offices or homes. I am impressed by how this tiny plant can be collected and utilized as a part of the interior and transformed into lively artwork. More importantly, it is an environmentally friendly way of design by using naturally sourced materials and minimizing wastage, which also matches the Scandinavian design concept.
Overall, I have been genuinely inspired by the works I saw during the furniture fair and by the fact that every furniture piece, regardless of how small or big it is, tells a story about the designers through their processes of thinking and developing. And this dedication to craftsmanship and details is a spirit I have drawn on when designing my projects. Stay tuned, and I will share more in my upcoming posts about other Scandinavian designs that can be found around Stockholm!
Hello all! Have you applied to KTH and are wondering what the possibilities of part-time jobs to earn some extra money are when living in Sweden? I completely agree that living costs in Sweden are “rocketing” high for students but you want to enjoy the years here! So, I know a few part-time jobs that my friends have where it is not required to know the Swedish language:
My friend Tassilo just recently got a part-time job in a small restaurant in Stockholm. He approached that place through Instagram ( I call it “The third door” way). Thinking outside the box! Tassilo is working sometimes in the evenings and sometimes on the weekends, approximately 16 hours per week. I am sure that you can negotiate for more/fewer hours! Plus, they probably would treat you to nice meals! The salaries vary a lot on your experience, it can go from 100-120KR/h and up!
Sandra, a friend from Lithuania, is working in a bar/restaurant and she is liking it! She is serving drinks and food in a great and casual place in the city centre! Even though Sandra does not speak Swedish, it wasn’t a problem getting this part-time job. You have to search for many places that don’t require Swedish but it is possible!
Arnold, the aerospace engineering student that I told you about in my previous post, is teaching children physics in French! Through an app, he created a profile and started teaching French kids, living in Stockholm. The perk of this part-time job is that you can work whenever you want! The hourly rate can vary from 150KR and up! Remember, you are your own boss. Also, lectures could be held online – can it be better? I don’t think so…
Alicja, from Poland, decided to teach youngsters the Polish language. She is working from home and having online classes only! Alicja mentioned it is a very enjoyable and easy part-time job when you are a student. She created her profile through an app too!
If you have software engineering skills, I think it’s easier for you to find a job. The job does not require Swedish at all and most of the time people speak in English in offices. Research online platforms where you could create your profile and advertise yourself to the market. So, if you are studying programming, this could be your chance!
Working for KTH
Working for a huge organisation like KTH will definitely stand out on your CV! The job opportunities vary from research vacancies to administrative jobs. You can check their job openings on their website regularly! Great tips on writing your CV and a motivational letter written by KTH and other links for job openings can be found here.
Sofia, one of the “Instagrammers“, is also working as a partnerships coordinator at a small start-up company. She is managing the micro-influencer campaigns so she is scouting for people who could advertise the brand’s products. Particularly, her job is from scouting potentials to setting up the collaboration, sending the product and collecting the content in the end. I believe Sofia is very passionate about this sector since she is studying communications! This really shines on your resumé and I am sure it is easier to get a job like this! If you are excited about public relations, perhaps this could be a start-up for you too!
A super flexible job could be walking cute dogs! If you are a dog lover, this could be for you! I know there is an app where you can contact dog owners and take their dogs for a nice walk from time to time! If you live in a studio apartment, you can sit the dog at your place and study at the same time! It’s a great opportunity if you are on a busy schedule and can study from home! Plus, dogs are amazing…you would receive so much love back… It just makes your day!
Start thinking now!
To sum up, start looking for a part-time job now and don’t give up straight away! Consistency is the key! Put a lot of effort into your application, and have a plan of how to approach the job position, and how to stand out. Perhaps you will need to step by an office/place to get their attention? Show them how much you want this job. I think it all comes from the details and effort you put in the end.
How to become the student ambassador, we will write in the near future!
Hello everybody! In this new post, I’ll show you my accommodation and tell you a little bit more about it. I live with 6 other students in Djursholm, slightly North of Stockholm, in a nice villa which was converted into student accommodation.
As I said at the beginning, I live in Djursholm, which is part of the Danderyds Kommun. It’s a very calm residential area, full of green spaces and big houses. It’s not exactly a student place, but it is still possible to find some rooms and accommodation even here. As mentioned in my cost of life post, I spend 4200 SEK/month of rent, including heating and electricity – which I think is a great deal considering the area! I found this accommodation on Akademisk kvart.
In total, we are seven people in the house: each of us has her/his own bathroom, and there are two kitchens – so that it’s not that difficult to organise the cooking! Plus, we also have a big garden to have barbeque parties in the Summer.
My way to KTH
I have three ways to get to KTH (oh my, I love Stockholm’s public transportation network!): the subway, the Roslagsbanan and the bus (which I never take).
The Roslagsbanan is a cute little train which takes me to KTH in about 10 minutes. I usually choose this option, both because it’s the closest to my house (15 minutes of walking) and because it comes very often (there is a train every 5-10 minutes during the day). Also, I love that journey! The incredible views over Stockholm’s lakes and forests can light up your day in a split second.
The subway is a bit further from my house (about 25 minutes walking), but it comes even more often than the Roslagsbanan. Plus, the walk to come back home is really nice as it passes through a small forest, where I sometimes happen to see cute little deers.
In conclusion, I really enjoy my life here – I love the nature, the tranquillity, my house and my housemates. However, I wouldn’t recommend living in Djursholm to everybody: being a residential area, there isn’t a wide choice of places to hang out, especially during the night. Sure, Stockholm is close and the public transportation works nice also during the evening, but it may still be a bit of a problem if you’re a night crawler! Living in Stockholm City would surely mean having more places to hang out and have fun.
That is all for today’s post. In the next weeks we’ll talk more about the cost of life in Stockholm, part-time jobs and how to find accommodation here – so stay tuned! In the meantime, why don’t you check out Raygo’s and Martyna’s post on KTH accommodation and living in Lappis?
I thank you very much and wish you a good weekend!
Hello everybody! This is the first of a series of posts on the costs of living in Stockholm. In each post, one of us will tell you how much she/he spends on a daily basis, living in Stockholm. This was a topic we were all concerned about before moving to Sweden to study at KTH, so we thought it would be nice to give you a holistic view of the topic. Today it’s my turn!
Most of my monthly expense goes into recurring payments, such as rent. In particular, every month I spend 4200 SEK (approx. 370€) of rent, inclusive of everything, plus 650 SEK (approx. 57€) for my public transport card (with student discount) and 100 SEK (approx. 9€) for a student-discounted phone subscription (8Gb of internet, limitless calls and text messages in Sweden, cheap intenational calls). In total, that’s around 5000 SEK every month.
I would say that this is quite in line with what most of my friends spend in recurring expenses. Of course, rent can vary a lot from case to case but, in general, for a room with shared kitchen you can expect to pay something like 3000-5000 SEK/month. This cost could rise considerably if you are planning to rent a one-person apartment, which oscillates around 10000 to 15000 SEK/month depending on the area.
In my case, I live in a house 30 minutes North of KTH and I have my own room and bathroom, but I share the kitchen with four other people. I’ll tell you more about it next week!
I try to cook my food everyday, but it happens that I have to eat outside and, usually, I end up buying a sandwich (25-60 SEK) in one of the cafeterias close to the university. Sometimes I eat at the Student Union, which offers complete meals for around 80-90 SEK (similar to what you’d spend for a complete menu in a fast food) or at a buffet place, where you usually spend around 150/180 SEK and you can eat as much as you want. Lastly, as I am really bad at containing my Italian instincts, I can tell you that a (good) pizza in Stockholm costs between 120 and 160 SEK.
When it comes to the groceries, I can sum up my meals in the following way:
a lot of pasta (500g are around 15 SEK, but – for some reason – spaghetti are way cheaper). You can save money buying from non-Italian brands. Pasta sauces range between 15 SEK for 500g of tomato sauce up to 35 SEK for 190g of pesto (once again, you can save money buying from local brands);
some meat (mainly chicken, which is around 120 SEK/kg) and cheese. Oh my, I love cheese. Some examples of what I like to buy are gouda (40 SEK for 400g), gorgonzola (35 SEK for 200g) and, of course, the king of all cheese: Parmigiano (60 SEK for 200g);
some vegetables and fruit (not a fan). One cucumber is about 20 SEK, 250g of tomatoes are about 30 SEK (but they are often in promotion), a box of six apples is about 35 SEK, half a kilo of white grape costs about 45 SEK… you can find basically everything and, if you’re vegetarian or vegan, you won’t have any difficulties here. Once again, the cost can vary greatly depending on the vegetables quality.
I also love salmon, which is way cheaper here than what I was used to (100g are around 35 SEK, but this highly depends on the fish quality).
All in all, I spend around 2500-3000 SEK/month in food. Remember that where you buy food can make a HUGE difference! Thankfully, you can find a wide range of supermarkets in Stockholm and choose accordingly (I mostly go for the cheapest options).
I admit it: I’m not a sport person. I love going to the cinema (a ticket is around 120 SEK), but sweating is not really my thing. However, I can give you some general considerations that I’ve heard from close friends:
Gym subscriptions: the cost of a gym subscription in Stockholm can vary a lot. Usually, gym chains are cheaper and they can be VERY cheap with student discounts – a friend of mine spent 900 SEK for a 5-month subscription!
Ski and Winter sports: once again, the cost varies drastically based on where you go, ranging from 200 to 400 SEK for a daily skipass for downhill ski. Renting for one day is around 250 SEK, but there is a way to rent ski equipment for free: you just have to go to Fritidsbanken. There, you’ll be able to rent whichever Winter sport equipment you want for free. A true game changer for me! Speaking of Swedish Winter, you can check out Raygo’s post on Swedish Winter sports for some more info and inspiration!
Bouldering: one session is around 170 SEK, and a one-month subscription is approximately 400 SEK.
Another nice way to practice sports (basically for free) is to join some of KTH clubs! KTH has clubs of any sort, ranging from chess to American football or rowing – and the same goes for hobbies. There are tons of student associations for you to join, both to try new experiences and practice your favourite ones! You can find more info on the Student Union webpage.
On the whole, I spend around 8000 SEK/month. Honestly, before coming here I thought I’d spend much more, since Northern Europe has the reputation of being very expensive.
One way to cope with the life cost is to find a part-time job: in the next few days, Martyna will write a post about it – and no, Swedish knowledge is not essential!
I hope you found this post useful. As usual, feel free to leave a comment for any doubt you might have! If you still haven’t done that, I’d also suggest you to check out Raygo’s post on KTH accommodation and Martyna’s post on living in Lappis: more posts about accommodation will follow!
Hello all, it’s Raygo here again! As Martyna introduced her accommodation at Lappis last time, this time it’s my turn to talk about my place at another KTH Accommodation option for students: Malvinas väg!
Malvinas väg is conveniently located within the KTH main campus. It is situated next to Q-Building (The integrated teaching building) and is a 5-minutes walk from main facilities such as the main library and KTH Entré (The reception and administrative building). Thus, it is convenient for new first-year students to get used to campus life by living here. I am also pleased by its location as I usually have classes at the Architecture Building, which makes it easy for me to arrange a more flexible schedule.
Each flat in Malvinas väg is furnished with a private kitchen and bathroom, also known as a “studio apartment.” The apartment size and monthly rent depend on the accommodation type (single studio or larger single studio, which are suitable for single and double tenants, respectively). To me, Malvinas väg offers an ideal set-up as I cook daily and enjoy having my bathroom, so it fits my needs while providing a cozy and modern living environment.
The laundry room is located on the ground floor of Malvinas väg Block 18, where we can book our desired laundry sessions with the app. There are sufficient washing and drying machines which operate daily from 6 am to 10 pm. Apart from that, the mail room is located on the ground floor of Block 16, plus the recycling room and bike parking area inside the building for the tenants.
Overall, I enjoy living in Malvinas väg because of its central location on the campus and the private living space it provides, as all you need are inside the apartment. However, I wish there was a common area for people to gather on each floor. Still, regardless of that, I often invite my friends to visit me at my place for dinner and games, and the comfortable living environment serves well for that purpose!
So that is it for today! Stay tuned for more information about the accommodation at KTH and in Stockholm, and I wish you all a lovely weekend ahead!