Hans - a German tourist - is driving through Skåne in southern Sweden with his caravan looking for a place to stay the night. He meets Johan - a local Swedish farmer.
Hans: Ursäkta mig. Vet du var husvagnscampingen ligger?
English: Excuse me. Do you know where the caravan camp is located?
Johan: Ja, det är bara att följa den här vägen 5 kilometer och sedan svänga åt vänster.
English: Yes, just follow this road for 5 kilometers and then turn left.
Hans: Tack så mycket! Jag har letat i flera timmar.
English: Thank you very much! I have been looking for several hours.
Johan: Det är ingen fara. Fin husvagn förresten. Varifrån kommer du?
English: Don't worry about it. Nice caravan by the way. Where are you from?
Hans: Jag kommer från Tyskland och är här i Sverige på semester över sommaren, som du kanske förstod.
English: I'm from Germany and I'm here in Sweden on vacation during the summer, as you might have imagined.
Johan: Jo, det är ju många tyskar som kommer hit under sommaren.
English: Yes, there are many Germans coming here during the summer.
Hans: Kanske för att Sverige är så underbart. Hur som helst måste jag åka nu. Tack så mycket för hjälpen igen!
English: Maybe because Sweden is so wonderful. Anyhow I have to go now. Thanks so much for the help again!
Johan: Ha en trevlig semester. Hej då!
English: Have a pleasant vacation. Good bye!
Travelling in Sweden is easy. Most people understand and speak good English. Some people are also skilled in German, French, Spanish, and Finnish. Most Swedes can easily understand Norwegian and well articulated Danish.
The biggest railway company is Statens Järnvägar (State Railroads).
There are also buses travelling all over the country. The biggest provider of long distance bus travel is Swebus Express.
In Sweden, driving is done on the right side of the road. For some rules and regulations, see Vägverket (Swedish Road Administration). You can drive freely for one year on a valid non-Swedish driving licence, and forever if you have a driving licence from an EEA country. Swiss or Japanese drivers’ licences can be exchanged for a Swedish licence for permanent residents.
Allemansrätten - All People's Right
In Sweden, one is allowed to walk in forests and fields and pick berries, mushrooms and flowers, even if it is on private property. This is in Swedish called 'allemansrätten'. There are some restrictions, which mostly anyhow fall under rules of politeness. The right only extends to "the wild" (as forests and meadows), not to obviously planted gardens. The area closest to a house also is exempted. Thus, for instance, one should not camp directly in another's front yard, nor can one light a fire if fire restrictions are in effect. You should not pick flowers that are rare or planted. This also extends to branches and twigs on living trees; the owners of a forest may have planted them, and probably plans to sell or let their children sell the trees as wood to the Swedish forest industry, Thus, you only may take fallen wood for a fire. when they are full-grown. You can camp one night on another's land. This right also does not extend to littering or bothering the animals, and you must pack out everything you take in,
The currency in Sweden is the Swedish krona (SEK) and öre, where 100 öre is 1 SEK. Öre are no longer used if paying cash. The exchange rate is about 8-9 SEK for 1 €. Many Swedes will use the word "crowns" for their currency, since that is the literal translation for kronor. To get cash in Sweden is easy, visit the closest ATM (called Bankomat or Minuten) with your VISA, MasterCard or similar.
The coins of less value than the 1 SEK are no longer used, however, you will still see prices such as 11 kronor 90 öre, but these prices are rounded to the closest amount in kronor, if you pay cash.
- En bil - A car
- Ett tåg - A train
- En järnvägstation - A train station
- En buss - A bus
- En biljett - A ticket
- En maskin - A machine
- En biljettmaskin - A ticket machine
- En karta - A map
- En bilkarta - A roadmap
As you can see, words can quite easily be put together to form new words. One difference from English is that in Swedish you don't separate the words, you write "en bilkarta", not "en bil karta". Writing it with a space is called "särskrivning", literally "separate writing", and should be avoided as it's incorrect.
This is some short introductory grammar to the definite form in Swedish. For a more complete guide, look at the page about nouns.
To make a word into definite form, you add letters to the end of the word and remove the "en" or "ett" from before it. To do this, first you have to know if it's "en" or "ett". In most cases, not always though (I'll come back to this), you simply add a "n" to "en"-words, and a "t" to "ett"-words if they end with a vowel. If they end with a consonant, you do the same thing, but add an "e" between the word and the ending.
- En bil -> Bilen
- Ett hus -> Huset
- En karta -> Kartan
Plural isn't as easy, as there's five "declensions". These you simply have to learn, but when you've read and spoken Swedish for a while, you won't have any trouble with it, you'll simply know when to use a certain ending. For now, ask a Swede, or look the word up in a dictionary. More on the declensions here (link to wikipedia).