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If you are planning to move to Sweden, you are probably wondering whether you need a visa or permit. Find out everything you need to know in this article.

Considered by many the cultural (and geographical) centre of Scandinavia, Sweden is an open and welcoming country — and as such, attracts many expats each year. Being a member of both the EU and the Schengen area, many nationals won’t need a visa to travel to Sweden. Read on to find out what applies in your case.

Do you need a visa to travel to Sweden?

If you’re an EU/EFTA national, a Nordic citizen (Norway, Iceland, Finland, Denmark, Greenland and Faroe Islands) or a citizen one of the non-EU countries that have signed and implemented the Schengen treaty (Iceland, Liechtenstein, and Switzerland) you don’t need a visa to travel to Sweden: a valid passport and/or identity card will be enough. Sweden also has agreements in place with several countries all over the world where, if you have a biometric passport (or a diplomatic passport, in some cases) you won’t need a visa.

If your home country is on the list of those that need a visa to travel to Sweden, and you plan on a short stay in the country (for less than 90 days), then you can apply for a tourist visa. You will need to provide a valid passport (that is still valid for at least 3 months after your visa expires), as well as proof that you can support yourself financially and a medical insurance which covers costs of at least EUR 30,000. This visa will also be valid for visiting any other of the Schengen countries within a 90-day period.

Good to know: If you’re a citizen of Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Georgia, Macedonia, Moldova, Montenegro, Russia, Serbia or Ukraine, you should contact your home embassy or consulate first, as Sweden has a Visa Facilitation Agreement in place with these countries.

Customs in Sweden

The type and amount of goods you are allowed to bring with you to Sweden depends on your nationality, depends on whether you’re coming from another EU/EFTA country or not. As a general rule, any goods that you will be using during your trip to Sweden (like clothing, cameras etc) can be imported duty-free. You can also import food to Sweden from EU/EFTA countries. However, if you’re coming from a non-EU/EFTA country, food items cannot be brought to Sweden if you don’t have a permit from the Swedish Board of Agriculture. As per other goods, you will be using during your trip, they have a maximum limit: 4,300 SEK (about 430 euros) if you enter the country on a commercial airline or a ferry, and 3,000 SEK (about 300 euros) if you enter the country in any other way. If you exceed that limit, you’ll have to pay import tax.

 Good to know: Specific rules apply for the import of alcohol and tobacco. Be aware that you must be at least 18 years old to bring tobacco to Sweden, and at least 20 years old to bring alcohol.

Some goods, like firearms and dangerous articles, medicine and narcotics, are restricted. You will probably need permission from the Swedish Police in order to transport weapons over the border, and the process varies based on whether the articles will also be taken out of Sweden or not. Regarding medicine and narcotics, you are allowed to bring your prescription drugs if you intend to use them personally, or to use them on your pets (in which case, they need to have been prescribed by a veterinary surgeon). Be aware that there are differences on the amount of medicine you are allowed to carry with you, depending on where you’re coming from.

 Good to know: When it comes to money, you have the right to carry up to 10,000 euros (or the equivalent in SEK) with you in cash. If you exceed that amount, you will have to declare it to Customs.

 Useful link:

Swedish Customs

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