Money Matters

The monetary unit in Sweden is the krona (SEK). There is no limit on the amount of Swedish and foreign currency taken into Sweden.

Sweden has yet to ratify the Euro treaty.

Making Purchases

Sweden is one of the most expensive countries to live in, though accommodation and dining out are cheaper in Stockholm than in most other western European capitals.

Average Prices (for your reference):
  • Bottle of Coca Cola: 10 SEK ($1.70)
  • Beer in a bar: 45-70 SEK ($7-10)
  • Hotel:1300 SEK ($215)/night
  • Hostel:150-350 SEK ($30-50)/night
  • Bus/subway ticket in Stockholm, Gothenburg and Malmo: 25 SEK ($4.20)
  • One meal: 100 SEK ($16.50)
  • 1 litre of petrol fuel: 15 SEK ($2.50)
  • Pack of 25 cigarettes: 70 SEK ($11.60)

If you are a careful with your expenses, a daily budget of around 1000 SEK ($156) will be enough. Recently opened discount stores such as Lidl, Netto and Willy’s offer a wide range of items at more affordable prices.

Credit cards

Major credit cards (some restriction may apply to American Express) are widely accepted throughout Sweden at banks, hotels, stores, restaurants, taxis, car rental companies and transportation utilities. Please note: in order to pay or withdraw cash with your credit card it requires that you have a card with chip and PIN number. The older magnetic-stripe cards won’t work.

Traveler’s Checks

Traveler’s checks are generally accepted as payment throughout Sweden. Change will be given in Swedish kronor. Please note that a nominal fee is charged when using the checks as payment.

ATM

The most used Swedish word for ATM is Bankomat, although several banks don’t use it at all. A more generic word would be Uttagsautomat; you may also see an ATM called Uttag, Minuten and Kontanten.

Nearly all machines regardless of operator will accept the MasterCard, Maestro, Visa, Visa Electron or American Express. You can withdraw up to 10,000 SEK ($1,420) per use. During a seven-day period you can withdraw a maximum of 20,000 SEK ($2,840).

Try to avoid changing your cash (U.S. dollars) into local currency at a money changer’s establishment or a local bank. Even if the establishment states that it does not charge a commission for the exchange, the rate of exchange that you will receive will be terrible.

Pickpocket Reminder

Pickpockets are rare but not unheard of. They usually work in tourist-frequented areas, such as airports, rail stations, shopping areas and festivals. Most Swedes carry their wallets in their pockets or purses and feel quite safe while doing it. Still, almost all stores and restaurants accept most major credit cards so there is no need to carry a lot of cash around. If you have a bike, do lock it or you may lose it.