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Sweden is very welcoming towards young students and trainees. By moving here, you will have the chance to acquire expertise in a working environment with strong egalitarian values, be a part of an international hub of professionals and use cutting edge technology and advanced tools. To be able to intern in Sweden though, you will have to get a permit if you’re not an EU or Nordic citizen.

 

What you should know about internships in Sweden

If you are an EU or Nordic national, you do not require a visa or permit to perform an internship in Sweden. Nevertheless, an internship does not give you the right of residence for more than 3 months (like finding a job or studying in Sweden does). So you will have to register to the Swedish Tax Agency as “looking for work”, which will give you the right to stay for 6 months. If your internship lasts longer than that and is an unpaid one, you will have to register as a “self-sufficient person” and provide proof you have enough funds to support you for one year in Sweden (around 150,000 SEK).

If you are a third-country national, getting an internship in Sweden is more likely to happen through an international exchange programme (within organisations such as AIESEC, IAESTE, JUF and SACCUSA) or an international agreement. Sweden currently has such agreements with countries such as the USA and Canada, as well as China (for young managers). In all these cases, the organisation or programme will submit the application for the internship on your behalf. If you secure an independent internship though, you will have to apply for a permit by yourself and pay the relevant fees.

 Useful link:

Migrationsverket: Permits for trainees

Finding an internship in Sweden

The easiest way to find an internship in Sweden is through your university if you are a student. Universities career services can help you find a placement that suits your qualifications — and companies themselves contact such services in order to recruit new talent.

If you are not a student, you contact companies that interest you directly. Start by checking out for any internship programmes on their websites. Feel free to send them spontaneous applications as well: you may get lucky, as many local companies are open to individual internships even if they are not part of a broader programme.

Will you have access to healthcare as a trainee?

Health care in Sweden is rather expensive, but Swedish nationals are entitled to a particularly efficient social security system which is mainly financed by tax. Indeed, tax rates are quite high in the country. Since you won’t be paying taxes though (as you won’t have a salary), you also won’t have access to Swedish healthcare.

Therefore, you need to subscribe to a private health insurance before travelling to Sweden. You can still inquire whether you will be covered by your home country's social security system during your stay. Make sure, however, that your insurance will provide coverage in Sweden.

European Union, EEA and Swiss nationals who have registered with their home country's social security system and who have a European Health Insurance Card are eligible for basic health care in Sweden.

Nationals coming from non-European countries for a more than a year's internship period in Sweden are eligible for the same health care as Swedish nationals, provided they have registered with the Swedish Tax Agency. However, coverage is not provided in the case of illness. If you are moving to Sweden for a less-than-a-year internship period, you will not be eligible for the same facilities.

 Good to know:

You can also submit a claim for insurance at the governmental Kammarkollegiet insurance as a foreign visitor.

 Useful links:

Swedish Migration Agency – Migrationsverket
European Health Insurance Card
Employment Agency
International Association of Students in Economic and Commercial Sciences – AIESEC
The International Association for the Exchange of Students for Technical Experience – IAESTE
The International Federation of Medical Students Association – IFMSA
European Law Students Association, ELSA

We do our best to provide accurate and up to date information. However, if you have noticed any inaccuracies in this article, please let us know in the comments section below.