Student Life in Sweden

Student Life in Sweden

Photo: Simon Paulin/

Student Life in Sweden

Wondering what it's like to study abroad in Sweden? Leaving your country to study abroad is about more than just the classroom! You'll meet Swedish students, other international students from all around the world and explore your new study abroad location. Here are a few highlights about what makes student life in Sweden unique.

Student Unions and Nations in Sweden

Student unions are present at every university in Sweden. You don't have to join, but if you do you'll get access to what is usually the focus of social life at Swedish unis. They'll help you meet new people through night life events, sporting clubs, and arts and theater activities.

Student unions at older universities in Sweden join student unions called ''nationer'' or ''nations'' in English. Historically, students would join the student nation that was named after the region in Sweden that they came from. Nowadays, students join whichever student nation they like, and usually select the one that best matches their interests. Some nations will be more focused on night life, while others will be focused on sports or the arts, or other hobbies.

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Student Nightlife in Sweden

Many universities have pubs and clubs on and nearby the campus. In bigger towns and cities students can choose from an array of bars and clubs. The legal drinking age in Sweden is 18, though occasional bars and clubs may only admit people over 20 or 23 years of age.

Going out on the weekend is popular in Sweden, so some of the more popular establishments might have long lines outside of the door. Some nightclubs in Sweden charge an entrance fee, usually ranging from 50-150 SEK or approximately 5-15 EUR.

Sports and Outdoor Activities

Fitness and enjoying the outdoors are both popular pastimes in Sweden. Your university will likely have a sports and fitness center and may have intramural teams for sports like football, handball, hockey or bandy. With nearly 100,000 lakes and a lot of coastline, you'll never be too far from water in Sweden and can also enjoy boating and other watersports. If you enjoy hiking, Sweden has 29 national parks as well as ample green-space in and around cities for shorter hikes. Residing in Sweden, you'll also get to benefit from ''allemansrätten'' which is essentially a law that allows you to hike and camp anywhere in Sweden provided you follow a few rules like cleaning up after yourself, and not camping within sight of houses

Are you considering applying to study in Sweden? Find out the 7 steps you need to take to study abroad in Sweden:

7 Steps to Studying in Sweden


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Photo credit: (from left) Niclas Vestefjell/, Melker Dahlstrand/ Melker Dahlstrand/, Johan Willner/, Ola Ericson/, Ola Ericson/, Carolina Romare/, Helena Wahlman, Söderarm/, Rodrigo Rivas/, Magnus Liam Karlsson/, Erik Leonsson/

Last update: 24 Oct 2016