Cost of living

 

You have certainly heard of the high cost of living in Sweden. But what do things really cost? This page will help you in the budgeting of your stay in Sweden.

The cost of living in Sweden is quite high. To start things off on a light hearted note (pun duly noted) we can begin by looking at The Economist's fabled Big Mac Index... where Sweden was listed 3rd most expensive in early 2012! Yes, a Big Mac here will cost you the equivalent of $US 5.91, implying a 42% overvaluation. What does this mean for those of you not immersed in "Burgernomics"? Goods, in this case represented by a hamburger, are much dearer than you would expect given the exchange rate.

The Migration Board stipulates that students should have access to 7300 crowns per month for the duration of their time in Sweden. This is an indicator of the amount you need to comfortably live in Sweden. Note, this does not mean "living comfortably" à la "Breakfast at Tiffany's", despite it seeming like a large amount of money. In Uppsala you can expect between 2000 and 3500 crowns per month to go to rent - 2000 representing the unusually cheap end of the spectrum, and 3500 being the premium end of the market. On top of this you may have costs for electricity, water, telephone and broadband (many student rooms include these costs in their rent - it is mostly in apartments and privately leased rooms that you may have to pay these costs). Food will set you back about 500 crowns per week. Already our budget has reached 5000 crowns per month!

A budget of 5500 crowns a month is really quite reasonable, even though it seems a lot. Even if you do literally nothing other than study (never go out to movies, never buy clothes, never take the bus and so on) and eat the cheapest food while in Sweden (which is not the best way to enjoy life!) I imagine that you will need a bare minimum 5500 crowns per month. This will not give you any leeway at all - if you get sick, need to buy course books or various other fees or whatever then you will be in trouble! In any case you can check the exchange rate for your local currency at the following website to try and get a better idea of what life costs here in Sweden.

Current exchange rates

Here follows a list of different goods and services so that you can get an approximate idea of various costs.

Going to the cinema: 80-100:-

1 year gym membership: 2200-4000:-

Winterjacket: 2000:- and upward

Organic milk: 12:- per liter

90 minute local bus ticket: 25:-

1 month bus card: 350:-

Buying a house in Uppsala: 19000 crowns per square metre

Student Union fee: 45:- per semester

Nation fee: 250-350:-

Course books: 1000-3000:- per semester

Visit to the dentist: 450:- and up - depending on how well you have brushed your teeth

Laptop computer: a basic laptop can be bought new for around 3500:-