Tag archives for international students

Rollercoaster – what a week, what a year

The last few weeks have seen me finish a Masters degree, say good bye to many loved friends, have a final trip around Scandinavia (Norway to be precise) and move black home! It’s been a rollercoaster few weeks and emotions have been running high! To say I’ve enjoyed this year is putting it lightly it has been one of the best years of my life (possibly the best) a lot of this due to the people I both knew before I arrived and who I met on arrival, (especially one person in particular you know who you are) :)

Bright!

The end is nigh! Sadly :( But there is still one small, slight hurdle! That of my thesis defense! It takes place on Friday so currently most things are taking second priority. However, whilst taking a break I thought it would be nice to share with you the recent fun things I’ve been up to!

It’s bright! So bright!
With glorious May, the weather has changed from fiercely cold only a couple of months ago to blissfully sunny! The days are so long that light has been streaming in at 3am! If you’re not a fan of light rooms when you’re sleeping you might not be so keen on Swedish rooms during the night!

3.18am Wednesday 29th May 2013.

Walking outside whilst the sun is shining so bright, is essential!
The long days make me eager to take a walk out early on in the day. But more often than not I’m distracted by some other fun thing especially on weekend mornings whether it be making/eating a full English breakfast (the vege version) or lying on the sofa reading a book! So by afternoon I force myself to venture out. Last Saturday I did just that and was rewarded with stunning views across the various bridges of Stockholm. The canals, boats, various flora and fauna, not to mention the numerous keen sunbathers all out basking in the sun!

One of the many waterways in Stockholm!

I’m hoping the future’s bright 
Walking outside and waking up early only make you think more, wonder more both about the good and the bad! How good it has been to live here in Stockholm for just under a year but how bad it is, how sad it is that this time is coming to an end! All I can hope is that the future will bring me back very soon so I can enjoy this beautiful city again soon!

The future’s bright! I hope!

The cost of living in Sweden

Being in Sweden is one of the most satisfying experiences to have. There are plenty of attractions throughout the country and an abundance of culture to take part in. However, as a student, staying in Sweden can be challenging. Coming from the US everyone was under the impression that Sweden was a “more expensive” country than a America. To a degree that is true. So for anyone out there who is thinking of moving to Sweden for whatever reason I would like to go over the monthly costs that you will have to face:

  • Accommodation: 3000+ SEK. Accommodation is the hardest thing to find when coming to Sweden because it requires you being in a queue for some time and may be the reason that some people won’t come. So if you are able to find a place to stay consider yourself lucky. On the low end you can be paying about 3000 however you will probably will be sharing a flat or a corridor. The more you are able to pay, the better your accommodation will be.
  • Transportation: 560 SEK (student price). Getting around Stockholm is very easy with the public transportation system. You are able to buy a monthly SL pass that will give you unlimited access to that system for the month. For anyone new to Stockholm I recommend getting it so that you have a good chance to explore. If you are looking to save money though you might not have to get this pass if you live close to school and perhaps a grocery store. Some people also buy bikes a ride those around during the warm months and only buy a pass for a month or two in the winter.
  • Food: 1200 SEK. This amount will depend on what exactly you eat and will vary. 1200 is the value that I spend on average a month for food.
  • Insurance. Remember you have to get insurance, both home and health/dental. If you are a student find out what insurance you can get abroad.
  • Phone: 150 SEK. I have a smartphone and use Google Maps a lot to get around so I had to make sure I got a plan with data on it. There are plenty of companies to choose from. The most popular one for students is Comviq. I have a prepaid plan from Telenor. I pay 150 SEK for 3000 minutes, 3000 texts, and 500 MB of data for 30 days. I have never reached any of those limits so I though this was the best plan for me.

Putting everything together, at the very least you will be spending about 5000 SEK per month living here. That does not include things such as: eating out, buying books, or any extra expenditures that you have. I hope this information is useful for anyone considering on coming over to Sweden.

Photo of an ice cream cone and Mehsum Rupani at Kista Centrum – Photo by: Kazem Behbahani

Let us help you!

Many of you who applied for a Master’s at the KI may have been accepted to a programme and may now be preparing for your journey across to Sweden. Many congratulations, I hope you’re very excited for this new phase in your life! You have much to look forward to! For those of you who unfortunately didn’t receive a place, many commiserations. Please keep in mind that the process is very competitive and that there are many opportunities out there to fulfil your ambitions.

Whether you have a place at the KI or not the sky’s the limit! Photo: Oscar Eriksson.

Whether you have a place at the KI or not the sky’s the limit! Photo: Oscar Eriksson.

Throughout the last couple of weeks I’ve received and been in contact with a number of you who have had questions and concerns about your move across. No doubt many of you have similar questions so here I thought I’d outline some questions and answers…

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The Swedish countryside: perfect in all seasons

Before I first came to Sweden I associated the country with blue and yellow Ikea, the world famous Eurovision sensation ABBA, meatballs (even as a vegetarian I know these are good homey Swedish food); I associated Sweden with Phoebe in the American sitcom “Friends” playing a Swedish masseuse but maybe more serious and something I aspire to win one day: the Nobel Prizes (yes I intend to win them all :) . However, during my first trip here I experienced a side of Sweden that for me is one of the best aspects of Sweden.

Sweden has a population of around 10 million people. The main cities are Stockholm, Gothenburg and Malmo. However, a large part of Sweden is the countryside, the rural aspects that are not only people but deer, moose, fox, hares, owls and all sorts of other fascinating creatures. To me the Swedish countryside could easily be a place I could call home!

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