Sweden is generally one of the safest countries in the world, so much so it’s become the model of a utopian state in some societies!
But through the years, Sweden has seen a decline in its safety rating. Crime rates are slowly increasing, with petty crimes happening left and right.
If you’re living in Sweden as an expat or tourist, please be sure to follow these safety tips.
Safety Concerns for Tourists
Through the years, we’ve all known Sweden to be safe. Walking around the city and taking in the majestic views feels like a scene in the movie.
Not until you start panicking because you’ve fallen victim to a petty crime or become a witness! The next thing you know, the local media is harassing you just to get your statement.
When visiting Sweden, you and your fellow tourists must be wary of some common safety concerns.
Common Tourist Crimes
Most travelers in Sweden generally think that these small crimes don’t exist, but it does. You could be at the wrong place and time when this happens.
Petty crimes such as theft and robbery are common in Sweden.This happens even to locals but even more to unsuspecting tourists!
These petty crimes usually occur in public transportation, tourist attractions, and transportation hubs. So whenever you’re in these areas, watch out for your things.
You don’t have to worry about violent crime or attacks while visiting Sweden. It’s uncommon even in cities, so you can have full confidence that this won’t happen.
Safety Tips for Tourists
You can easily avoid falling into a bad situation when you visit Sweden. One of the most common-sense solutions we can share with you is to be mindful of your belongings!
Many thieves are good at their job; you’ll hardly notice they’ve taken anything from you! This being the case, here are the ABCs of safety you need to remember:
- ALERT: Stay alert regardless of where you are. Watch out for your belongings, your friends, and most especially you!
- BRING: Bring only the necessary items when you’re going out. Losing your passport in this big country is an ABSOLUTE NO NO.
- CALL: Never hesitate to call the attention of local authorities and ask for emergency consular assistance in case anything happens to you. They’re the best people to sort out your problems.
The ABCs apply even if you’re traveling to other European countries. Make sure to keep this in mind to protect you from petty theft and violent crimes.
Areas to Avoid
There are a lot of beautiful cities to visit once you enter Sweden. Surely, you’ll be tempted to try reaching these places without considering the consequences ahead.
Before you embark on this adventure, STOP. Think of where you’re going and always do your research on the internet if it’s safe to visit. This is an important piece of advice we always give to solo travelers and even female travelers.
Although Sweden is safe, some areas are notorious for small crimes. In general, the outskirts are a good area to avoid.
They are farther from the cities, making it much harder to call emergency services. You could be stuck in the rural areas of Sweden with no money and without a car! Yikes.
Statistics on Crime Rate in Sweden
One of the beauties of living in or visiting Swedish cities is they’re safe to walk around. You can enjoy the fresh and cool mountain breeze while taking a stroll.
Nonetheless, exercise even the most basic precautions because you can never know what may happen to you.
Is Sweden dangerous? Not really, but Sweden’s crime rate has been rising recently.
Assault rarely happens in Sweden, especially towards women. Notwithstanding this, men can also find themselves victims of an assault.
That said, always keep your guard up and try to avoid trouble. You don’t want to be in the streets of Stockholm fighting like wild animals!
Leaving the doors to your hotel room open won’t be a problem. No need to worry about burglars wandering around. Nonetheless, it still pays to be cautious!
Just because burglary isn’t high in Sweden doesn’t mean you can be careless and always leave your doors open.
The last thing you’ll find in Sweden is drugs.
How so, you might ask? The Swedish government’s zero-tolerance policy keeps the country drug-free from drugs.
You’ll be surprised at how low the drug-related crimes in Sweden are.
Mugging is a prevalent problem across European cities. Sweden usually reports several cases of mugging daily, especially in Stockholm and other major cities.
This crime usually happens at night or on any unlit and empty street. Watch out for these areas, especially if you’re walking alone.
Scams are prevalent in any country you visit, and Sweden isn’t an exception. Some of the most common scams in Sweden include picture and taxi scams.
In the picture scam, locals would hand their cameras to you to take their pictures.
If you try giving it back to them, they’ll drop it on purpose. They might even accuse you of theft.
They’ll ask for a really large sum of money afterward!
In taxi scams, some drivers overcharge how much you have to pay. Most Swedes recommend hailing a reliable cab company or booking your mode of transport in advance.
Thankfully, the statistics for terrorist attacks are very low in Sweden.
This is because Sweden is a well-regulated country. If there’s any threat of terrorism, the Swedish police will address these ASAP.
You will be informed through the local media for updates.
Violent crimes usually happen occasionally and are common in cities like Gothenburg and Stockholm.
Local authorities usually don’t report it to the media. This leaves locals and tourists clueless about what happened.
You could be at the wrong place and at the wrong time, surrounded by Swedish authorities investigating a crime that just took place.
Warnings & Dangers in Sweden
You can easily fall in love with the beautiful country of Sweden. You can take in the city as you find yourself in cozy coffee shops. At night, you can watch the northern lights hypnotize you.
But before you do any of these things, always make sure to be cautious and stay alert. The cities offer a lot of magic, although you might encounter some problems.
1. Transport & Taxis Risk
Public transportation is awesome in Sweden.
It’s reliable and fast; you can get from point A to point B quickly.
Train stations will help you arrive at your destination in no time.
Another way you can get around is by taking a cab in Sweden. It is a pretty convenient way to commute, so we recommend this option too.
Most cabs are generally safe and reliable.
However, be selective about what taxis to ride. Some taxi drivers may trick you into paying a higher fare than what’s indicated on the meter.
This is pretty common in most countries, not just Sweden.
2. Risk of Theft
There will always be snatchers lurking wherever you go. Sweden is no exception; you might even experience this if you’re unlucky.
Petty theft is common around tourist attractions because it’s crowded. You’ll hardly notice losing your things during the moment. You might only discover it when you go back to your apartment.
Don’t flash your expensive jewelry and gadgets around as much as possible. You might just be the next target of thieves when they see something interesting from you!
3. Natural Disasters Risk
There aren’t too many natural disasters in Sweden, especially during summer. Based on our experience, visiting Sweden during the summer season is a lot better and more tolerable.
Unfortunately, the conversation changes when you plan to visit Sweden during winter. The breeze is ice cold; some people would feel frozen in place. The temperature could reach below 0, instantly turning you into human popsicles.
That being said, use proper clothing for the right season. Invest in a good warm coat, and don’t be a daredevil by braving the snowstorm. You’ll just end up feeling cool instead of looking cool.
4. Mugging Risk
Mugging occasionally happens in Sweden. This risk can easily be avoided if you watch out for ‘hot spot’ areas where mugging is prevalent.
If you’ve visited Sweden, you know walking the streets is safe. Nevertheless, we recommend you exercise vigilance regardless of where you are. Avoid the outskirts, and stay close to where the people are.
If you’re alone or drunk, don’t even think about walking the streets at night. You can never be too sure who you might encounter on the streets!
We don’t want you to risk your safety in exchange for a good time.
5. Terrorism Risk
Terrorism risk is low in Sweden; it hasn’t experienced any terrorist attacks. Nonetheless, the Swedish government is vigilant and prepared if something happens.
Considering the series of events happening around the globe, their government isn’t removing the possibility that an attack may happen.
In any case that there is, be sure to stay tuned to the local media. Make sure you have adequate supplies ready, and listen to what the government has planned out.
6. Scams Risk
Scams are prevalent everywhere in the world., even in Sweden! But unlike other countries, we can say that we’ve experienced fewer scams in Sweden compared to others.
Scams typically occur in populated areas of the country, like the big cities!
Locals of these cities already know of these scams and how to avoid them. But tourists, they have yet to learn of this.
To prevent being scammed, be cautious with the people who approach you. We know it’s hard to tell their true intentions. But when in doubt, trust your gut and avoid potential scammers.
7. Women Travelers Risk
Women can safely travel around Sweden, even if they’re alone. The Swedes are generally accommodating, respectful, and friendly!
However, watch out for people who have bad intentions. If you’re a woman traveling alone, ALWAYS check your surroundings.
Don’t go to pubs and bars alone, and certainly do not wander around town at night! That’s a big no-no every woman traveler should keep in mind.
What Are the Benefits of Living in Sweden?
We’ve found some of the best places to live in Sweden, which convinced us to pack our bags and relocate to a new country.
If you’re considering doing the same, we’ve listed some benefits you can enjoy in this beautiful country.
1. Convenient Transportation System
Transportation is an important consideration. Fortunately, you can easily find the transport information of a country online!
The ideal place to live in must have a reliable transport system. This gives you an easy time traveling in and out of the city.
Based on our experience, Sweden meets this criterion.
You can find various train stations that travel to different parts of Sweden. The fare is pretty reasonable, considering the speed and convenience you can enjoy.
2. Little to No Pollution
There’s hardly any pollution in Sweden, thanks to its responsible citizens. They observe their local laws to the dot, making it the ideal society.
You can breathe in fresh and cool air any time of the day, especially if you stay in northern Sweden.
Although the cost of living is higher than in other Scandinavian countries, you’re getting a lot of perks in return.
Living in a pollution-free country is a big perk in itself. Today, you can hardly find a country that doesn’t experience pollution. Luckily, Sweden is one of the few you can enjoy.
3. Excellent Healthcare
Healthcare in Sweden is top-notch.
It’s more affordable than others, and the services are fairly reliable. You can grow old in this country and have your health be the priority.
You may not enjoy paying taxes, but it’s worth knowing that your contributions are helping to maintain the stellar healthcare system of Sweden.
Everyone in the country is privileged with equal access to medical care – a blessing that shouldn’t be taken for granted.
It’s especially beneficial for younger generations, who can start taking care of their health from an early age.
This helps them be more health conscious, regardless of their age.
4. Fair Working Conditions
Regardless of your industry, you can guarantee fair working conditions across the board. No one is being overworked and overpaid, two of the big red flags in a company.
Working in Sweden will hardly feel like a job and more like a hobby you’ve started to gain interest in. You can come home at the end of the day feeling happy and fulfilled.
No wonder a lot of people aim to work in Sweden. With its outstanding benefits and fair working conditions, who wouldn’t be enticed by this beautiful country?
5. Narrowed Gender Gap
If there’s anything that we’re sure of about Sweden is that equality and equity are prevalent across the country.
Regardless of where you are in the Scandinavian peninsula, you don’t have to worry about unbiased treatment.
There’s a good balance in the number of male and female population. Not only that, but the opportunities are equal regardless of gender.
Women, most especially, don’t have to feel anything less than what they deserve.
Because of this, everyone treats each other equally. No one is better or above another person, and people treat each other respectfully.
Keeping Your Money Safe in Sweden
The Swedish krona is the currency of Sweden, and it goes way back in history. Its currency is so valuable, primarily because it costs a lot when you exchange it for other currencies.
That being said, be sure to keep your money safe in Sweden. You don’t want thieves getting to it. You’re practically giving free money in exchange for being careless.
Here are helpful tips to help keep your money safe while in Sweden.
Card Don’t Cash
Carrying a huge amount of cash is risky, especially if you lose all of them in one go. As much as possible, if you can card your expenses, go for it.
This is a good idea because you’ll only need to take out a single card for your peace of mind. Plus, you no longer have to pull your wallet in and out of your pocket.
Spread Your Cash
If using cash is your only alternative, don’t put all your bills in your wallet. Spread them evenly, like inside your bag, wallet, or book!
You don’t have to worry about losing cash in one go, especially if you drop your wallet.
Be sure to have backup cash inside your bag or your hotel room. This is always a good idea so you can access funds if something happens.
Swedish Nightlife Safety
You can’t go to Sweden without experiencing the nightlife. It’s an adventure because of the amazing food and drinks you can try.
You’ll probably have a bottle or two or even too much! When this happens, be sure you’re around good company that can bring you back to your place.
Don’t wander around at night while you’re drunk and alone. These two are common reasons you could fall victim to a robbery, which we don’t want to happen.
Finally, ride a cab to go home if you’re unsure where you are. This is far safer than going for a walk at night in a completely unfamiliar place.
Frequently Ask Questions
Before we leave without parting words, allow us to answer some of the FAQs we usually get about Sweden. Keep reading because you might just learn a thing or two about this beautiful country.
Is Healthcare Free for Tourists in Sweden?
Unfortunately, healthcare isn’t free for tourists in Sweden. Nevertheless, tourists will still be able to enjoy the awesome health care services the country offers, although at their own expense.
Some travelers may find it expensive compared to their own country. But the services they can get in exchange are top-notch.
If you experience any medical emergencies in Sweden, feel free to visit nearby hospitals. In addition, having travel insurance can help you with the costs.
Are Swedish People Friendly to Foreigners?
The Swedes are generally friendly and polite. Being friends with them is easy, especially if you’ve got something in common.
However, remember that it isn’t common for strangers to randomly strike up a conversation with you in a restaurant. Although friendly, they aren’t fond of social interactions like other countries.
What Should I Avoid in Sweden?
Like we’ve said above, avoid walking alone, especially at night or when drunk. You don’t want to land on the first page of local tabloids as the tourist who got mugged.
At the same time, avoid going to the outskirts of the cities. This is important advice for very adventurous tourists who don’t consider the consequences of their actions. There won’t be any security guards to help you.
We recommend saving the important Sweden telephone numbers, so you can ask for help wherever you are.
Is Sweden Safe to Travel Alone?
Scandinavian countries, like Sweden, are generally safe to travel even if you’re alone. Crime rates are low, which makes it a good place to visit.
Just be sure you have travel insurance and health insurance in cases where you get into accidents or other emergencies.
You should be able to ask for assistance from the locals should anything happen.
More importantly, be mindful of your environment. You must be extra vigilant when traveling alone because only you can protect yourself.
Is Sweden Safe to Travel for Families?
Sweden is a good place to take your family for a vacation. This country in northern Europe offers a hard-to-beat landscape and destinations.
Plus, it’s also an incredibly safe country to go around.
You can schedule your visit when the midnight sun is the longest and have a completely different experience from what you’re used to.
If you’re looking for a country that’s safe, Sweden should be the first on your bucket list. It’s perfect even for children! Consider having an international driving permit so that you can go around comfortably.
Is Sweden a Cheap Place to Visit?
Unfortunately, the cost of living in Sweden is quite expensive. It’s one of the major complaints we get about Nordic countries, which we will never be able to change.
Despite its cost, Sweden is still a worthwhile country to visit. Many awesome things await you once you finally have the budget to visit the government of Sweden.
Fair warning, don’t even consider moving to Sweden without a job, or you’ll have difficulty buying the essentials in the supermarket.
When Is the Best Time to Visit Sweden?
Sweden tends to get super cool during the winter, which few people can tolerate.
If you’re coming from the Middle East or any tropical country, you might not enjoy your stay due to the cold winter!
Thus, we highly recommend you visit Sweden during summer, anytime between May and September.
There’s more sun to keep you warm, although it can sometimes rain. But at least you don’t have to worry about a big weather adjustment.
Sweden has its charm that we can’t even begin to describe. It’s best left to be experienced while enjoying your meal and taking in the view.
Not only that, but the country is generally safe. It’s perfect for people regardless of the age group! You can feel electricity running in your veins when you take in the majestic views.
We hope you strongly consider living in Sweden very soon!