Are you planning to move to Sweden?
There are many reasons why you will want to move to Sweden. Sweden is all a socialist paradise, the most liberal country on the planet. It offers equal opportunities to one and all. Regardless of their color, economic status, race or religion. Are you planning to move to Sweden soon?
There are many reasons why you will want to move to Sweden. Sweden is all a socialist paradise, the most liberal country on the planet. Sweden offers equal opportunities to one and all. Sweden is a multi-ethnic diverse democracy, which celebrates inclusiveness during a time when it has almost become a crime to be an immigrant in many countries in the West.
Sweden is well known for its egalitarian values and Swedes are believed to be among the happiest people on the planet. When you move to Sweden, you can benefit from policies such as paid parental leave, affordable health care and warm and friendly people.
However, there are things you should know before moving to Sweden, such as the local customs, the Swedish language and adjusting to the sudden weather change – it stays dark for 20 hours during winter here in Sweden. Here are the most important things you must do before moving to Sweden.
#1: Be at least 18 years old (or have someone in Sweden who is closely related)
If you are applying for an adult citizenship in Sweden, then you should be 18 years old at least. If you are under the age of 12, you can have your parents applying for your citizenship on your behalf. Children that are aged 12 and above will need consent from their parents to apply for citizenship, and those above the age of 15 will need to have lived in Sweden for at least 3 years and conducted themselves well before applying for a citizenship.
#2: Have a proper proof of identity
You should have a passport or a similar document which shows that you are who you say you are. If you don’t have such a document, you should have a close relative or a loved one who is already a Swedish citizen who can vouch for you. If you have a spouse who is a Swedish citizen and they vouch for you, then it is important that you should have lived together for a certain period. Your spouse should have sufficient knowledge of your background and should be able to confidently attest your identity.
#3: Get a residency permit at the Migration Agency
The most important thing to be done before you move to Sweden is to get a residency permit to legally live and work in the country, well before you arrive in Sweden. This could be through a job, family or college. Remember – all residency permits have an expiration date attached to them. So you should get in touch with the Migration Agency as soon as possible to renew the permit or for other issues related to the visa.
#4: Register with the Swedish Tax Agency and get a personal identification number
When you move to Sweden and get your residency permit, you should get registered with the Skatteverket or the Swedish Tax Agency. This registration process, called as folkbokföring, will enter details such as your personal identification number, marital status, physical address and other details into the national database, and you will be given a unique personal identification number referred to as the personnummer. The personnummer is very important and will be asked for all critical tasks such as opening a bank account, getting a paycheck from the company you work for and so on.
#5: Register with the Swedish Social Insurance Agency
After getting the personal identification number, you should immediately register with the Swedish Social Insurance Agency, called as Försäkringskassan. Doing so will grant you important social benefits such as healthcare, child allowances, parental benefits and disability coverage. This is very important as it will give you the protection you need in case you happen to get into a mishap or face a medical emergency.
#6: Obtain a resident ID card
The next step is to apply for the Swedish resident identification card called as the identitetskort. You will be asked for this card to prove your identity when applying for a credit card, opening a bank account or to verify your age when purchasing alcohol. You will need this card even to pick up mail from the post office.
When applying for this ID card, you will need someone who already has their own Swedish ID card to accompany you to the Swedish Tax Agency and vouch for you. This could be your current employer, a colleague or a friend.
#7: Open a Swedish bank account
Opening a bank account in Sweden is a simple process once you have the Swedish ID card and the Swedish personal identity number as well as a valid passport.
Sweden has four large banks – SEB, Swedbank, Nordea and Handelsbanken. You can choose any of the four banks and benefit from their services.
#8: Find a job
Being productively employed is very important once you move to Sweden. You should register with the Arbetsförmedlingen, the Swedish Public Employment Agency.
The officials at this agency can find you a job based on your qualifications, work experience, and skill sets and even assign a job coach for free to train you for the interview process. This should give you an idea of how well immigrants are treated in Sweden!
#9: Find a house or apartment to stay
You may have arranged for a room to stay at temporarily before arriving in Sweden. But once you make the move to Sweden, you should look for a more long-term living arrangement.
It is not easy to find rented accommodation in Swedish cities such as Malmö, Stockholm, and Gothenburg, but you can get help from the local administration by registering for the municipal waiting list for home seekers, called as bostadskö.
Be on your very best behavior when you make the move to Sweden. If you want to be a Swedish citizen at some stage, you must obey the law of the land at all times. You must not have defaulted on debt, not committed any crime and should not be considered to be a security threat by the law enforcement.
You should also learn Swedish. If you follow all the rules and behave impeccably, you will be considered for citizenship after a few years by the Swedish Migration Agency.
All the best!