Passports and Visas
All passengers require a machine-readable passport valid for six months beyond the conclusion of their trip, with appropriate visas. You should carry your passport with you at all times to ensure against its loss or theft in hotels. Check with the Swedish Consulate to determine if any visas are needed. Securing required documents is the responsibility of the traveler. This information is a guide only and it is essential that you check all current passport and visa rules with your travel agent before departure.

Currency
Sweden uses the Swedish krona, often referred to as "crowns" by Swedes speaking English. Even though Sweden joined the European Union in 1995, the country chose not use the euro. You can change US dollars at banks and currency exchange agencies for the best rates, hotels and some shops can also change them for you, but the rate will likely be much higher. ATMs are also an efficient way to get money in the local currency. Credit cards are widely accepted by many establishments in Sweden.

Voltage
Sweden has 220-230 V at 50 Hz, with a type C or F socket. America's electrical currents are 120 V at 60 Hz, with a type A or B socket, so you'll need a converter and an adapter.

Internet Access
Wireless and wired Internet access is widely available throughout the populated areas of Sweden. Many of the hotels we use offer this service free or at a small charge. You can also check out the Internet cafés in main cities that allow you access, usually for a small charge. Swedish airports, train stations and public libraries are other locales where Internet access is commonly available.

Phones
Phoning home from another country can be expensive. All hotels will add a service charge to the cost of any phone calls you make from your room. This charge can be very high. It is always cheaper for you to use public telephones (payphones) if your cell phone is not set for international calls. Your Travel Director can explain how to dial internationally if you are unsure.

Shopping
Minimalist, smart, efficient, functional and with a dash of clean style -the signature qualities of Swedish design are evident everywhere, from IKEA furnishings to the country's finest glassware, jewelry and gadgets for the home.

Shopping in Sweden is a vacation pleasure not to miss, whether you have your heart set on high-quality artisan glass and crystal, china and pottery, jewelry, furs or textiles and traditional Scandinavian wool rugs called "rya."

World-famous Swedish glass made by local artists’ glimmers in the windows and on the sunlit shelves of the major glassworks shops. In the province of Småland lies an area called the Kingdom of Crystal, home to 15 different glassworks shops including the illustrious Orrefors and Kosta Boda. Inside, you can even watch the glass blowers work their magic, working a glowing mass into a unique creation.

From the bigger cities to the tiniest villages, "hemslöjd" (handicrafts) shops tempt shoppers with traditional handmade goods like knitted sweaters and hats, needlework and woodcarvings. Traditional markets and country fairs of all sizes fill the shopping event calendar in Sweden.

Among the finds is the Dala Horse, a highly popular Swedish souvenir. These small, painted wooden horses are fairly expensive, but have been prized collectables since the 17th century. In Dalarna and the municipality of Mora, workshop doors are propped open so you can peek in on the artists carving and painting their horses.

Tipping
We suggest the following tipping rates: Taxi drivers won't expect a tip, but rounding up the fare on the meter is appreciated, Restaurants and bars 10-15% of the total bill.

Transportation
As with most of Europe, traveling within cities and towns can be easily done on foot, by bus, tram or taxi. If your travel plans include two or more cities, bus and rail networks will get you to and from. The extensive Swedish railway network is comfortable, modern and very efficient. Renting a car may also be a convenient option, as driving is among the safest in Europe here. Just keep your eyes peeled for the moose, elk, deer and boar who have been known to wander onto the road.

Dress
Generally, casual jeans or slacks, shirts, sweaters, a jacket and comfortable walking shoes are all you'll need. If you plan on an evening at a nicer venue, dressier clothes may be called for. Warm clothing and a rain jacket or umbrella is usually a good idea as well, regardless of the season. Mosquito repellent is also suggested if you're visiting forest or mountain areas.

 

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