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Sweden is attracting more and more emigrants in modern times. This is in no small part due to the vivid landscapes and scenery, but also because Sweden has one most equal distributions of income in the world, ranking 2nd. Generally, quality of life is quite high, with a focus on equality between the sexes in particular being one of it’s well known attributes. Before making a relocation there, however, there are a few things to take into account.

Research the area you want to live

The best way to know what to expect when you move to Sweden is by making a short visit to areas you are considering living in. This will give you a good idea of what amenities and essentials are close by, what the local community is like, and how expensive house prices are. You can also contact local estate agents and get a good idea of what properties are on the market.

Learning Swedish

If you are moving from the UK, then you might be pleased to hear that the majority of Swedes speak English. This is certainly an advantage at first, as you will be able to clearly communicate with any property agents and the local authorities when relocated. Many Swedes will welcome the opportunity to speak English, as they are able to brush up on their language skills. That said, you should also make an effort to try and learn some useful phrases, as you will become part of your community a lot quicker this way.

Taxes and Visas

Because there is quite an extensive use of tax to fund medical care, benefits and areas that we might rely on charities for in the UK (such as cancer research or homeless shelters), tax in Sweden is quite high. It can be useful to research what you will be expected to pay when you have relocated, and factor this into your budget. The Swedish currency is Kronor, with £1 being worth around 10 Kronor, so you will have a favourable exchange rate. If moving from the UK or any other EU country, you won’t require a visa, but make sure all other important documents are up to date, such as passport and driving licence.

Important things to do when you arrive

The main thing you will need to do is get a Swedish ID card. This serves as your main form of identification in Sweden. It’s generally a good idea to have some form of employment lined up before you arrive, as in order to get an ID card, you need a colleague or family member to accompany you. That said, anyone who has a Swedish ID card can vouch for you when you apply, so if you have friends living in Sweden, this will also be an option. You will also need to make sure you have a bank account and insurance, as well as registering with the Swedish tax authority. If you hold a valid UK or European driving licence, then you won’t need to apply for a Swedish one.

Healthcare and Education

If you’re moving with children, make sure you have access to a local school of the appropriate level for your children, and that you are happy with the standards there. It should be noted that higher education is not free in Sweden for anyone outside of the EU. Healthcare, while state funded, still requires private contributions if you need to see a doctor or use hospital facilities, although the charges are not overly high compared to other private only healthcare systems.

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