Is Sweden as expensive as many suspect

Corona still determines the travel plans of all of us - or prevents them. Sweden is no exception. The country is still in the middle of the third wave with very high numbers of infections. This is certainly due to a large extent to the so-called Swedish “Sonderweg” that the country has taken - without lockdown, with mostly open schools and for a long time without the use of masks.

Many travelers who want to go to Sweden were and are insecure. Is it possible to travel to Sweden right now? Or from when again? We put together the most important information and try to be as current as possible. (We cannot, however, accept any liability for the information. We cannot, may and do not want to give legal advice - that is what lawyers are for.)

 

What is the current development like?

After the high numbers in spring, the number of infected people fell significantly in summer and rose again in autumn. After the preliminary peak around the New Year, the numbers fell. In February, however, they remained at a fairly high level, only to rise again afterwards. The third wave is now also in Sweden, with the British mutation spreading rapidly.

At the moment (May 18) there are 1,047,143 confirmed corona cases reported in Sweden, as reported by SVT. 14,301 died from or with the virus. Compared to its Nordic neighbors, the number of infections and deaths in Sweden is significantly higher. The 7-day incidence value is now falling, but is still at a high level with just under 300 new infections per 100,000 per week. This makes Sweden one of the countries with the highest incidence rates in the world. At the same time, the death toll has been falling since the end of January, but is currently stagnating.

The situation is sometimes very different. For example, while Åmål municipality only had three new cases in the past 7 days, Högsby municipality is struggling with over 1200 cases per 100,000 inhabitants in the same period.

Should I currently travel to Sweden at all?

It is more than questionable whether May or early June is the ideal time to travel. The falling numbers give hope, however, that the situation will soon get better (and thus perhaps certain restrictions will also be removed). In order to narrow down the question better, the regulations and recommendations in Sweden must be observed as well as the travel advice and warnings from the German Foreign Office. A travel warning has existed for all of Sweden since November 15, 2020. A trip to Sweden is therefore not advisable at this point in time, unless it is urgently needed.

 

What is the Swedish government saying?

For a long time Sweden held back with severe restrictions. Right at the beginning of the pandemic, the opportunities to visit old people's and nursing homes were restricted. On the whole, however, it was assumed that the residents would behave responsibly by consistently keeping their distance from one another. It works sometimes, but not always. In the second wave, however, the tone became sharper and people were urged to urgently reduce contacts and avoid fitness studios, cinemas, shopping centers, etc.

The government also advises Refrain from traveling that is not absolutely necessary. If you travel, then only under the following conditions: You are healthy and you take responsibility by avoiding crowds, keeping your distance and adhering to hygiene guidelines.

In many regions, museums, theaters, swimming pools, etc. are closed and people are encouraged to avoid shopping malls or other places where many people gather. Since November 24th, only 8 people have been admitted to public events. Alcohol cannot be served after 8 p.m.

Since December 24th, only a maximum of 4 people have been allowed to come together in a round in restaurants; After 8 p.m. no more alcohol is sold. Since January 7th, it has been recommended to wear a mouth and nose protection in local public transport. In some regions, it is advisable to wear a face mask in other places where the minimum distance cannot be maintained.

Reliefwere forBeginning of June 2021announced. These will probably include opening times of restaurants and amusement parks, among others. As soon as there is more information on this, you will definitely find it in this post.

Here you can find a good overview (but in Swedish) that shows which rules currently apply in which countries: https://www.svt.se/nyheter/inrikes/lista-har-ar-restriktionerna-som-galler-i -sverige

Meetings in public spaces with a maximum of 8 people

The regional recommendations and restrictions were converted into national regulations from December 14th. The maximum number of 8 people at public gatherings now applies across the country. This also applies to demonstrations, for example. For private meetings it is also advised that there are no more than 8 people. Children are not excluded, but are counted. Regional or local regulations and measures can, however, go beyond these national ones.

Negative test on entry

Since February 6, all non-Swedes who want to enter Sweden must be able to show a negative Covid 19 test that is no older than 48 hours. Those who cannot do this will be turned away at the border.

Exceptions only apply to cross-border commuters, under 18s, non-Swedes who live in Sweden, and people who have to travel because of an urgent family matter.

It does not have to be a PCR test, LAMP and antigen tests are also possible. The test must be in English, Swedish, Danish or Norwegian.

You are currently not allowed to enter Sweden from countries outside the EU (including Switzerland and Norway). However, there are a few exceptional countries that have particularly low infection rates.

 

What does the Federal Foreign Office say?

A travel warning has been in place for all of Sweden since November 15, 2020. Anyone who travels to Sweden now has to expect a quarantine on their return. As of March 7, 2021, Sweden was classified as a high incidence area. This means that you have to show a negative test result that is not older than 48 hours when you return to Germany.

Since the numbers are constantly changing, the current status should be checked urgently before the trip.

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When will I be able to travel to Sweden again without restrictions?

Unfortunately, there is no answer to that at the moment. In summer - depending on the development of the infection - travel could perhaps be a little less problematic again. For example, the negative Covid test on entry or the quarantine on the return journey could be omitted. Serious information is currently not possible.

In the course of this week the Swedish government wants to present a possible roadmap for the summer. As soon as it is announced, we will of course report on it here.

Like the other Nordic countries, Sweden shows great interest in a vaccination certificate, so that vaccinated people are more likely to travel. However, it is not yet clear whether and when this will come.

Can I take the ferry to Sweden?

The lines from Stenaline (except from Sassnitz to Trelleborg), TT-Line and Finnlines were used during the entire time and are therefore also in operation now.

The route with the Colorline via Norway is not possible. The ferry service is currently closed. For the time being, this applies until May 19.

 

Is it possible to travel through Denmark?

Denmark has again imposed strict entry restrictions. However, transit from Germany to Sweden (or the other way around) is possible. However, you have to expect controls. Then you should have a booking confirmation for your accommodation in Sweden with you. The transit should also take place as quickly as possible and without a long stopover. If you show symptoms that are typical of the corona, you may be turned away at the limit.

Further and always up-to-date information at: https://coronasmitte.dk/en/entry-into-denmark

UPDATE from March 30th, 2021: After the border from Denmark to Sweden had been closed for most due to the British mutation, which was widespread in Denmark at an early stage, the border can be crossed over the Öresund Bridge again from March 31, 2021. The only requirement is a negative Covid test that is not older than 48 hours.

 

Can i cancel if i'm unsure?

As long as there is no travel warning, it will be difficult to enforce a free cancellation. Hotels in Sweden, in particular, had often stood up to their feet when the travel warning was still in effect. If you still do not feel comfortable with the trip, then get in touch with the hotels, holiday home owners, airlines ... and try to talk directly to them. Maybe you are accommodating.

For those regions for which there is a travel warning, a free cancellation should actually be possible. If you booked through a German tour operator, it usually works without any problems. Individual travelers can possibly get into difficulties when hotels in Sweden stand in the way.

Airlines and ferry lines have so far been quite flexible when it comes to changing bookings free of charge. Perhaps that could be a solution: not to cancel your vacation completely, just postpone it.

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Do I have to be quarantined when I return?

Sweden is currently a high incidence country, which means that you will have to be in quarantine for 10 days after returning from Sweden. However, this can be shortened with a negative test after 5 days. Exceptions apply to completely vaccinated persons and genesis with a corresponding ID.

In NRW, the quarantine rule was changed on November 20. suspended for the time being by the Higher Administrative Court in Münster.

If you are unsure, the best thing to do is to contact your local health department. There you will get a reliable answer.

You can find more information at the Ministry of Health.

 

How can I protect myself in Sweden?

The protection against viruses is ultimately the same everywhere - and not just in Corona times. Regular and thorough hand washing is just as important as sneezing into the crook of your arm. Keep a minimum distance of one to two meters from your fellow human beings and minimize social contact, for example avoid hugs and avoid large gatherings and celebrations. A Mouth and nose mask is not mandatory; but is recommended - in local public transport and in all areas where the distance cannot be consistently maintained. So it makes sense to have a face mask in your luggage. If you should show symptoms, get tested and stay at the vacation home, caravan, hotel, or whatever you are on vacation.

In Sweden, make sure that in rural areas, especially in the far north, the nearest hospital can be a long way away. So if you feel sick, it would be a good idea to go to a place with a hospital as a precautionary measure.

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Are there any restaurants, shops, museums and other tourist attractions open in Sweden?

Contrary to what some demonstrators at the Corona demos claimed, life in Sweden has never been completely normal since the outbreak of the pandemic. For example, gatherings with more than 50 people were forbidden for a long time; since November 24th only 8 people have been admitted. In restaurants, a maximum of 4 people are allowed to sit together at one table. As of March 1st, restaurants, bars, pubs and cafes should close by 8:30 p.m. at the latest.

While restaurants, cafés and shops are otherwise open regularly, many museums and cultural institutions such as theaters are closed. Since March 25th, individual museums, art galleries and similar institutions have reopened under strict conditions. So it's best to check their homepage before you visit. The big amusement parks like Liseberg in Gothenburg and Gröna Lund in Stockholm are not allowed to open. Astrid Lindgren's World in Vimmerby is also closed. These parks could reopen in June 2021! Some other tourist offers are currently not possible or only possible to a very limited extent. On March 30th the news came that the festival “Sweden Rock” will be discontinued again.

It is now strongly advised not to visit stores and shopping centers. Only important purchases should be done - and these alone. The stores are called upon to keep the number of customers as low as possible.

Hotels and campsites are usually open as usual.

And what about the schools?

By April 1, the Swedish Ministry of Health recommended that high schools (i.e. grades 10-12) should take distance learning. This recommendation was not extended in April. It is now up to the individual municipalities to decide whether the pupils should be trained in face-to-face or distance lessons. The Högstadiet students (grades 7-9) are mostly, but not always, in face-to-face classes. The younger cohorts were taught in school throughout.

 

Do you have any further questions? Write them in the comments so we can take them in and - if possible - answer them!

 

 

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